Wednesday, January 4, 2017

UN Hypocrisy and US Collusion

Does the "United Nations" have any credibility?

I’ve long struggled to understand how any rational
person takes the United Nations seriously.

And how citizens of the Free World tolerate their governments participating in this deplorable body.

Sadly, the so-called United Nations represents the very worst of humankind, the dregs of humanity if you would. Hypocrisy at it’s very ugliest.

Here we have a gang of despicable self-righteous thugs of nations that include the most incorrigibly compromised rogue states on earth, like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and others, who themselves are guilty of  the most heinous abuses and crimes against humanity. Whether state-sponsored or just overlooked, horrific crimes are regularly committed in many of these dictatorship police states, like executions, stonings, beheadings, honor killings, subjugation of women, slave labor, corporal punishment that includes flogging, amputation and torture, just to name a few. Forget about freedom of press or freedom or religion. The concept of freedom doesn’t exist in countries like these.

And yet, the so-called enlightened Western Nations sit together in assemblies and councils with representatives from these rogue states, in a body called the United Nations, and have the unmitigated gall to shamelessly target Israel, one of the tiniest states on Earth and freest state in the entire Middle East, to placate the villainous goons that they have shamefully “united” with.

It is almost laughable that China, a nation that sits as a permanent member of the so-called United Nations Security Council, is in fact an authoritarian state, one that systematically curtails a wide range of fundamental human rights, including freedom of expression, association, assembly, and religion. A government that regularly imprisons and beats human rights lawyers or dissenting reporters, that compromised government has a permanent right to weigh in on what’s right and wrong for the rest of the world?

Who else sits on the UN Security Council? Egypt? A country where over 90% of women are victims of female genital mutilation, over 82% of which were perpetrated my state-recognized health-care professionals!? A country where gang rapes have been encouraged by the government to stop women from demonstrating in protest against corrupt government policies!? A state where political prisoners are regularly stripped and beaten to obtain forced confessions, where children are kidnapped and tortured by the government’s own security forces?

This very nation drafts a bill condemning Israel for building homes for its women and children on land their ancestors lived on for millennia!? And then 14 out of 15 members vote for it? And one abstention? This, coming from nations who claim moral and ethical clarity and superiority, yet in fact are morally bankrupt, or are in cahoots with nations who are morally bankrupt?

Can someone pinch me? Am I in the Twilight Zone, because that’s sure what it feels like.

Nations who are guilty of mass murdering their own civilians with weapons of mass destruction, who proudly sit in this Assembly… their heinous crimes get barely a mention, or at most, a symbolic slap on the wrist. But Israel alone is singled out for condemnation after condemnation.

Out of all 23 resolutions that the United Nations adopted in 2016, a whopping twenty resolutions condemned Israel, and only three for other nations. One for Syria, a regime that has murdered more than 200,000 of its own people, one for Iran and one for North Korea, both rogue police states that sponsor international terrorism.

Fascinatingly, these latter three resolutions passed with far fewer votes than the twenty lambasting Israel that passed with vast and sweeping majorities. In fact, there was even a resolution ordering Israel to cede the Golan Heights to Syria, the mass-murderous regime where over half a million are dead in the past few years!


Is anyone paying attention to this appalling hypocrisy?

Shame on the United States and all other Western Nations that sit on this lame assembly!

Is that whom you wish to be united with? Syria, Iran, North Korea, and their ilk?

Even worse, is this our outgoing president’s legacy? To collude with this villainous organization that has nothing else to do in the world than attack Israel, a nation surrounded by hostile enemies who wish to destroy her?

"Return to pre-1967 borders" is their mantra.

Does anyone bother remembering that in ’67, hostile Arab nations were announcing their plans to obliterate Israel in the same style of the Mongolian hordes who laid waste to complete cities in the Middle Ages? These militarized Arab states were planning for mass graves in every Israeli city they dreamed of conquering, in which to dump the bodies of all the Jewish men women and children they planned to slaughter and mass murder. Does anyone bother remembering the great existential threat that Israel found itself in then, and still does today?

Does anyone find it ironic or cynical that the very nations who perpetrated horrific atrocities against the Jewish people in recent history, whether fascist or communist, Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox or Muslim, sit there self-righteously at 1st Ave and condemn Israel for defending itself against contemporary mass-murderous fascists and bloodthirsty fanatics? Nations who persecuted, dispossessed and banished Jews for millennia, dare lecture the descendants of their Jewish victims to not build homes for their babies in the Jewish People’s own ancestral homeland? Nations who are guilty of unspeakable historical crimes against humanity preach to the descendants of their victims about maintaining unsustainable “historic status quos?” Does anyone find this ironic?

No, of course not. Because it’s always Israel-Bashing season all the time in the UN. That’s the only agenda the Nations of the UN seem to be United on. I cannot think of a single organization on earth that has done more to discredit itself than the UN.

*                      *                      *

Words are important, and so are letters.

In fact, acronyms are meaningful too.

With regard to the U.N., the acrostic says it all.

That’s why they call themselves the UN, get it? Because “un” means “not,” or the opposite of.

For example, the UN Human Rights Council means “un-human rights.” It’s obvious that that's the case, since the 2017 UN Human Rights Council includes an all-star team of such notoriously egregious human-rights violators such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Venezuela, China, Cuba, Iraq, Burundi, Bangladesh and United Arab Emirates.

The UN Human Rights Council claims that their mission is the “promoting and protecting of all human rights around the globe.”

Huh? Did I miss something?

Are we now considering these scoundrels world experts and champions of human rights!? Have we put the wolf in charge of the hen house?

But now, it all makes sense. You just have to read it with the “un.” Their mission is really to un-promote and un-protect human rights around the globe.

For example, when UNESCO ridiculously rejects any historical Jewish ties to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, ignoring millennia of indisputable historical and archeological evidence, we can now understand why they’re called UNESCO. It’s not the “United Nation Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.” It’s the un-educational, un-scientific and un-cultural organization. Clearly, they’re anti-education, science and culture.

The UN Security Council is really the un-security council, because they are clearly set on further destabilizing an already deteriorating security situation in the Middle East and the world.

UN Peacekeeping is really about keeping the un-peace. That explains their appalling record, and why they hire criminals to be so-called “peace-keepers,” as was recently discovered in Burundi, for example. And that explains how Hezbollah terrorists could dress in UN uniforms and use a UN vehicle to kidnap and murder Israeli soldiers, and how the UN denied having a secret videotape of the kidnapping for many months.

UNRWA is an un-relief and un-working agency for the so-called Palestinian un-refugees, who are actually  un-Palestinian too. In fact, the UN’s cause celebre, the entire notion of Palestinianism has no sense of positive self-identity. It just means that one wishes Israel to not exist, and then to ethnically-cleanse the Levant of all Jews. There’s no positive pride in being Palestinian other than wishing to purge Jews and have an exclusively Islamic police state, like Hamastan (Gaza), Qatar, Saudia Arabia, and all the others. So in essence, Palestinianism is an “un-identity,” that is, a nationalist identity only toward the end of negating Jewish statehood, or any Jewish presence period.

That’s why it’s the UN’s most important project. Or should I say, their un-project?

Of course, that’s why incitement and demonization of Jews goes on unabated at UNRWA schools for Arab children. It’s not about relieving the so-called Palestinian’s plight. It’s about un-relief, and perpetuating their grief.

It’s all in the “un.”

Indeed, the UN’s record of accomplishing anything around the world is rather unimpressive.

UN Ethics Office is about un-ethics, because there are few organizations as unethical, un-balanced and untruthful as the United Nations.

That’s why the unstable “peace” they promote is unachievable, unfair, unreasonable and unsustainable.

That’s why their unhinged resolutions don’t resolve anything, but only ensure that things will remain unresolved, or worse.

Their efforts to help are unhelpful, and as peacekeepers they are unsuited, unqualified, unfit, unreliable, uninformed, untrustworthy and unproductive.

Not unsurprisingly, the UN’s sense of justice is unjust and unrepentant. Their skewed view of reality is unreal. Their unrelenting audacity is unthinkable, unimaginable and continues to go on unabated. The UN’s unceasing hypocrisy is truly unbearable, and the fact that the Western World has continues to support this is simply unbelievable, unjustifiable and unforgivable.

Our only consolation is that the Guardian of Israel, G-d Almighty, neither slumbers nor sleeps.

We hope and pray that Israel remains unabashedly undaunted, undeterred, unafraid, unintimidated, and most of all, unaffected by this nonsense. Indeed, the bond between G-d and Israel is unbreakable and unassailable.

The UN is undeniably an unambiguous reminder that the world is still unredeemed. We need to understand just how badly the world needs Moshiach.

But enough talking about them and how un-acceptable they are. Let’s talk about us

That’s right, the United States, the US, that spells us! Collusion with the UN is so un-American and so unbecoming for us. We stand higher. What has happened to us!? The US, us, colluding with the lowly UN? It’s so UNlike US!

The UN might go under, but Israel will surely prevail.

To all my fellow Americans, it’s time for us to undo the damage and hold our outgoing president accountable. Time for us to be on the right side of history.

G-d bless America. We stand with Israel.

Am Yisrael Chai. Peace!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Chanukah and the recent UN resolution

Am I the only one fascinated by the alignment of the last day of Chanukah and beginning of the new secular year?

Do you know that 2017 has nine calendar days for Chanukah? Today, January first, and then again for eight days in December. So 2017 is unquestionably the "Year of Chanukah!"

Of course, Chanukah never really ends. Rather, the awesome message of this year's Chanukah has been gained and added to our treasure trove of experiences. It continues to enrich us and empower us, even long after the eight-day festival is over.

Sadly, this year's Chanukah was marred by a rather unsettling event (pun intended), a typically-vicious anti-Israel resolution at the UN, and an unprecedented US abstention.

Ironic, because Chankuah is all about the triumph of light over darkness. But this year, darkness seems to have prevailed over light, and ignorance over reason.

In a stunning move, the fanatically biased United Nations condemned Israel for allowing Jews to live in their ancient capital, Jerusalem, or even from praying at the Western Wall, and the US abstained.

Even worse, it appears as though our president colluded with the UN in drafting and promoting this resolution!

Even more shocking is the date in which it transpired, the day before Chanukah, the day that the Maccabbees reasserted Jewish sovereignty over Jerusalem and the Temple Mount and drove out the Hellenist invaders.

So along comes the UN and negates thousands of years of uncontested Jewish sovereignty in one fell swoop, and the United States tacitly approves.

I think it’s fair to assume that most Americans consider this a cataclysmic failure in US foreign policy, while some erroneously think that this might somehow pressure Israel to make more concessions that might somehow jumpstart peace talks again.

But everyone realizes how absurd it is to disassociate Jerusalem from the Jewish People.

Jews lived in Jerusalem longer than the English lived in London or the Spanish lived in Spain, or the Romans lived in Rome. In fact, Jews lived in Jerusalem long before the English or Spanish even existed, and even well before the Romans even existed.

A Jew is a walking relic from the past, and Jerusalem is his ancestral home for most of recorded history.

The Jew has been persevering  to maintain his Holy City for millennia. Every foe who succeeded in conquering Jerusalem from the Jews ultimately faded away and disappeared behind the cobwebs of history.

The Seleucid Empire is a perfect example.

In fact, they were the villains of the Chanukah story, the very reason we have been celebrating for the past eight days.

Many people are mystified or outraged by the UN’s and President Obama’s timing in issuing this preposterous resolution.

Was that an idea of a cruel joke? People wonder. A Chanukah gift to the Jewish People, many of whom voted for him in two elections and voted for the candidate he had recently endorsed?

How many American Jews are now shaking their head in regret and dismay? I personally know many who are, and I’m sure you do too.

Other Jews, who distrusted Obama from day one, are angrily beating their chests! How dare he perpetrate such a dastardly deed, just days before Chanukah, the holiday in which we celebrate the Jewish liberation of Jerusalem! The time we celebrate that Jerusalem is once more in Jewish hands!

Was he trying to be like the proverbial Grinch who stole Chanukah?

I humbly disagree.

My dear friends, what I am about to say might sound like hyperbole or fantasy. But it is not.

Please don’t get all riled up. Just hear me out.

The UN and Obama just gave us all a lesson about Chanukah. Actually, this lesson was taught in the Talmud Bavli some 1,500 years ago.

Let’s read it together:

The Talmud (Shabbat 22b) asks:

מאי חנוכה? What is 'Hanukah? The rabbis taught: On the twenty-fifth day of Kislev 'Hanukah commences and lasts eight days, on which lamenting and fasting are prohibited. When the Hellenists entered the sanctuary, they defiled all the oil that was found there. When the government of the House of Hasmoneans prevailed and defeated them, oil was sought to kindle the Menorah in the Temple and only one vial was found with the seal of the high priest intact. The vial contained sufficient oil for one day only, but a miracle occurred, and they lit the Menorah with it for eight consecutive days. These eight days were the following year established as days of joy, for Hallel praise and thanksgiving.”

Fascinatingly, there is no mention of the miracle of the war, of the miraculous liberation of the city. The Talmud simply states that Chanukah is so called because of the miraculous way the Temple was rededicated, with the lights that lasted for eight days.

Herein lies the crux of the Chanukah. It’s not about “us” and “them.” It’s not like “They oppressed us, they occupied our land, they restricted our freedoms. We fought back. We won. Let’s eat!”

It’s that the site of the Holy Temple, atop the Temple Mount, was rededicated as a House for G-d in a miraculous way that clearly demonstrated that it was what G-d wanted.

The war, few prevailing over many, liberation of our city and our land, renewed Jewish independence and sovereignty, etc… that is all secondary. That’s why it was called “Chanukah,” dedicating the Temple, and not “Independence Day” or “Jerusalem Day” or something like that. Even the apocryphal reference to חג האורים, the festival of lights, recalls the miracles of the lights, not the miracle of the war, as the major theme of the holiday.

So now let’s consider the main points of the recent UN resolution:
  1. The UN is declaring all and any Jewish presence in Jerusalem and Judea Samaria as settlements, and therefore, as illegal.
  2. The UN declares that all this settlement activity is an obstacle to peace.
  3. The UN demands that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities
  4. The current status quo is not sustainable or acceptable. The current “one-state” reality is not viable.

Obviously we understand the malicious intent of the hypocritical Jew-haters at the so-called United Nations. They would like Israel to cease to exist, G-d forbid. Of course, a so-called “Palestinian State” means a Judenrein fascist police state, like Gaza currently is, that is sworn to the mass-murder of Jews everywhere. “Two-state solution” is one step toward a “Final Solution,” heaven forfend, לא תקום פעמיים צרה. So it must be opposed in the strongest of terms, with or without a US veto.

But as our sages observed, לב שרים ומלכים ביד ה' (“The hearts of officers and kings are in the hand of G-d” – based on a verse in Misheli 21:1)

If you consider these statements objectively, the message is undeniably true and aligns with the essence of Chanukah.

The UN declares that all Jewish presence in the Holy Land is but a mere settlement! That’s right, if you were ousted from your home but you’re camping out in your backyard, you’re just pitching a tent. You’re not living in your true home, as a true resident does. Why aren’t you clamoring to re-enter your home? Why are you “settling” for a tent in the backyard? Hmm, sounds suspicious, the United Nation reasons. You must be occupiers.

That’s correct. Chanukah reminds us that it’s not about “our land,” or “our” independence. It’s about dedicating a house to G-d. And G-d only has one Home, in one place. The same place it’s been ever since 870 BCE.

It’s about rededicating that Holy House by kindling His Holy Menorah with pure oil, as prescribed in His book, the Torah.

It’s not about us. It never was about us.

That’s why if you read the “V’al hanissim” prayer chanted in the Amida and in Birkat (grace) each day of multiple times each day of Chanukah, you will not find the pronoun “us” or “we” used even once, except in the very beginning where it refers to the miracles that You, G-d, performed for our fathers. And then the entire prayer invokes G-d as “You” in second person.

“(Thank you) for the miracles, for the redemption, for the mighty deeds, for the saving acts, and for the wonders which You have wrought for our ancestors in those days, at this time—

“In the days of Matityahu, the son of Yochanan the High Priest, the Hasmonean and his sons, when the wicked Hellenic government rose up against Your people Israel to make them forget Your Torah and violate the decrees of Your will. But You, in Your abounding mercies, You stood by them in the time of their distress. You waged their battles, You defended their rights, You avenged the wrong done to them. You delivered the mighty into the hands of the weak, the many into the hands of the few, the impure into the hands of the pure, the wicked into the hands of the righteous, and the wanton sinners into the hands of those who occupy themselves with Your Torah. You made a great and holy name for Yourself in Your world, and You effected a great deliverance and redemption for Your people Israel to this very day. Then Your children entered the shrine of Your House, cleansed Your Temple, purified Your Sanctuary, kindled lights in Your holy courtyards, and instituted these eight days of Chanukah to give thanks and praise to Your great Name."

Holy smokes! I counted a whopping total of twenty-three “You’s,” and not one single “We” or “Us.”

Here’s the other important prayer we chant each night of Chanukah after kindling the menorah. It’s called “Haneirot Halalu”:

“We kindle these lights [to commemorate] the saving acts, miracles and wonders which You have performed for our forefathers, in those days at this time, through Your holy priests. Throughout the eight days of Chanukah, these lights are sacred, and we are not permitted to make use of them, but only to look at them, in order to offer thanks and praise to Your great Name for Your miracles, for Your wonders and for Your salvations.”

Yes, we are kindling lights, but they are not for us or our use. They are only for us to gaze at, in order to offer thanks to You, for Your miracles and Your wonders, etc.

What does that teach us? That Chanukah is not about us. It’s about G-d, but not about “Him.” Rather, it’s about feeling G-d’s presence, and consequently about talking with G-d as “You.”

So how can I truly celebrate renewed Jewish life in our ancestral land while You G-d are still homeless, as it were? And if You are homeless, then so are we. Your Home lies in ruins, while Your children, the ones You so dearly wish to kindle Your holy lamp in Your house, can’t even ascend upon Your Holy mount, to gaze upon the desolate site of Your home?

How dare Jewish leaders brazenly lie and claim that the Western Wall is the holiest site in Judaism! What utter falsehood!

Where do you feel most at home in your property? In your back ally? Front yard? Outside the walls of your home? Of course not. It’s inside the walls where you truly feel at home. Your own sanctuary, your home base.

The Western Wall is just an outer Wall, and a mere fragment thereof. And that’s why it’s called the Wailing Wall. It’s not the holiest site in Judaism. It’s the saddest site in Judaism that we are able to visit, and wail. If you are happy with that status quo, if you settle with being outside in the back ally while your home is hijacked or in ruins, and you are barred from entering altogether, then you are just a settler, by your own self-definition. You don’t really belong there.

So the UN declares, the current status quo is unacceptable! Stop settling!

It’s time to fish or cut bait.

If it is indeed your home, then go build your home. And if it isn’t your home, then stop camping out in the backyard!

But Jews are kind-hearted and benevolent people. How can we displace the Arabs who are currently there? What about their shrine or shrines? Shall we not honor the fact that they’ve been there for the past numerous centuries?

So here’s where Chanukah comes in. It’s not about us. It’s about dedicating a home for G-d.

Perhaps I ought to stop thinking about myself, and what kind of person I wish to be viewed as. G-d wants a home, so let me go dedicate it. And if I cannot dedicate it at present, then I ought to start clamoring and demanding for G-d’s home to be rebuilt and rededicated. I’ll start showing that I’m no settler, but a son or daughter of the true Owner of the property whose home tragically burned down twice but will soon be rebuilt and re-inhabited, by His own children, the way HE wants it. Just like HE demonstrated with the miracle of the eight days of Chanukah over 2,100 years ago!

Thank you to the United Nations and to Barack Obama for reminding us of what we all know in our heart of hearts to be true, but can’t articulate it.

Let’s stop "settling" for less, when we can achieve the Dream of Dreams, an eternal home for the Divine on this earth! We must cease and desist from living this “settler” existence in Exile at once!

The Golus-settlement status quo is unacceptable and not viable. It’s illegal for a Jew to be in Exile, or for G-d to be in exile. It’s a violation of G-d’s law.

Let’s go build Your house, G-d. The Third Holy Temple. And let’s dedicate it to You with pure oil, just like Your holy priests, the Maccabbees, did in times of old.

And then, there will be true and lasting peace, a peace that all nations of the world, including Arabs, will come to cherish and appreciate.

But so long as we’re mere settlers, our “settling” is an obstacle to peace, to the ultimate peace.

The current “state” of Israeli “statehood” is not a lasting solution, because it does not recognize the need for G-d to have His home. If you’re homeless, how does it help to have a state? And if you’re willingly homeless, do you even deserve a state?  Have a state without having a home is also a settlement of sorts.

The very notion that a Jewish “state” is a consolation to Jews for the millions of lives lost in the Holocaust in an anathema and morally objectionable.  It might be true that the current state is necessary in order to prevent future Holocausts, heaven forfend, from the surrounding hostile enemies. But in no way does it somehow justify or reconcile the atrocities of the past, nor even the suffering and injustices of the present.

The only consolation to the nearly two millennia of Holocausts, Crusades, Pogroms, massacres, expulsions and inquisitions, etc., is the true and complete Redemption through Moshiach, the climax of which will be the re-dedication of G-d’s home on the Temple Mount, and the return of all G-d’s children from the far-flung corners of the earth, followed by the resurrection of the dead.

Amen. May it be speedily in our days.

But until that time, let’s mobilize now to bring it about, and not just wait passively. And remember: it's not about me. It's about something infinitely greater and more awesome than me. It's about You.

PS:  the "You" theme of Chanukah is also eloquently expressed by King David in Psalm 115 (that we currently recite for the Rebbe's years, and that was also recited each day of Chanukah in Halel): "לא לנו ה' לא לנו -- Not for us, O G-d, not for us... but for Your name give honor, for Your kindness and for Your truthfulness. Why should the nations say, 'Where is your G-d?'..." Indeed, it's not about us, but about You. And therefore, "ישראל בטח בה' עזרם ומגינם הוא -- O Israel, trust in G-d. He is their help and shield..."