Sunday, April 28, 2013

Haveil Havalim #406 Is Up!

י"ט לחודש השני תשע"ג

This week's edition of the Jewish and Israel-oriented, Haveil Havalim Blog Carnival is up at It's MY Crisis And I'll Cry If I Need To 

The Truth About Pesah Sheni

מוצש"ק פר' אמור תשע"ג

This past Wednesday was the 14th Day of the Second Month, Pesah Sheni.

במדבר ט
ו  וַיְהִי אֲנָשִׁים, אֲשֶׁר הָיוּ טְמֵאִים לְנֶפֶשׁ אָדָם, וְלֹא-יָכְלוּ לַעֲשֹׂת-הַפֶּסַח, בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא; וַיִּקְרְבוּ לִפְנֵי מֹשֶׁה, וְלִפְנֵי אַהֲרֹן--בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא.ז  וַיֹּאמְרוּ הָאֲנָשִׁים הָהֵמָּה, אֵלָיו, אֲנַחְנוּ טְמֵאִים, לְנֶפֶשׁ אָדָם; לָמָּה נִגָּרַע, לְבִלְתִּי הַקְרִיב אֶת-קָרְבַּן יְהוָה בְּמֹעֲדוֹ, בְּתוֹךְ, בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל.ח  וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵהֶם, מֹשֶׁה:  עִמְדוּ וְאֶשְׁמְעָה, מַה-יְצַוֶּה יְהוָה לָכֶם.ט  וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָה, אֶל-מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר.י  דַּבֵּר אֶל-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, לֵאמֹר:  אִישׁ אִישׁ כִּי-יִהְיֶה-טָמֵא לָנֶפֶשׁ אוֹ בְדֶרֶךְ רְחֹקָה לָכֶם, אוֹ לְדֹרֹתֵיכֶם, וְעָשָׂה פֶסַח, לַיהוָה. יא  בַּחֹדֶשׁ הַשֵּׁנִי בְּאַרְבָּעָה עָשָׂר יוֹם, בֵּין הָעַרְבַּיִם--יַעֲשׂוּ אֹתוֹ:  עַל-מַצּוֹת וּמְרֹרִים, יֹאכְלֻהוּ. יב  לֹא-יַשְׁאִירוּ מִמֶּנּוּ עַד-בֹּקֶר, וְעֶצֶם לֹא יִשְׁבְּרוּ-בוֹ; כְּכָל-חֻקַּת הַפֶּסַח, יַעֲשׂוּ אֹתוֹ.

Numbers 9
6 But there were certain men, who were unclean by the dead body of a man, so that they could not keep the passover on that day; and they came before Moses and before Aaron on that day. 7 And those men said unto him: 'We are unclean by the dead body of a man; wherefore are we to be kept back, so as not to bring the offering of the LORD in its appointed season among the children of Israel?' 8 And Moses said unto them: 'Stay ye, that I may hear what the LORD will command concerning you.' 9 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 10 'Speak unto the children of Israel, saying: If any man of you or of your generations shall be unclean by reason of a dead body, or be in a journey afar off, yet he shall keep the passover unto the LORD; 11 in the second month on the fourteenth day at dusk they shall keep it; they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs; 12 they shall leave none of it unto the morning, nor break a bone thereof; according to all the statute of the passover they shall keep it.

So, there are several customs for Pesah Sheni, like eating matzah, not saying tahanun (supplication), having a nice meal, etc.

This year I heard many talk about the musar (ethics), hassiduth, and or qabbalistic concepts learned from Pesah Sheni. Many were focused on the concept of having a "second chance," or HaShem's mercy by giving us a second chance, or HaShem's reward for those desiring to fulfill a misswah (commandment).

I believe that these are all positive concepts to study, and are certainly all easily found within our texts.

I heard many Jews also mention hope and prayer that next year we would be able to bring the Qorban Pesah, (Passover Sacrafice), if not in the First Month (Nissan), then in the Second Month (Iyyar).

However, I did not hear anyone at all talk about what they or their communities were actually doing to bring the Qorban Pesah. None. Wait around for Mashi'ah, I suppose.

Yet, we can bring the Qorban Pesah, even now, and even in a state of tum'ath hameth (defilement from contact with death). (See Ramba"m, Hil. Qorban Pesah, Ch. 7:1.)

Teshuvah (repentance) is not just embarrassment and regret, two crucial components of teshuvah, but also a commitment to refrain from making the same mistakes again, as well as making restitution.

How can we proceed if nobody is even talking about possible plans of action?

There is, of course, Rabbi Yisra'el Ariel, Head of the Temple Institute, has been trying to educate Jews for years about bringing the Qorban Pesah, as well as other qorbanoth. He has even does demonstrations of the Qorban Pesah, making sure that the animal was disqualified for a qorban first.

The Temple Mount Faithful try to bring the Qorban Pesah, as well as try to bring the corner stone for the Temple itself. They mostly just getting smacked around, and thrown back down the stairs.

Rabbi David Bar-Hayim Head of Machon Shilo also teaches about the Qorban Pesah, and works hard to spread the word about the possibility of bringing it.

What do our "mainstream" rabbis say? Well, one rabbi from the Mamlakhti (undying state loyalist) town of Eli says, "העם לא מוכן." (The people are not ready.)

That  may be so, but what the heck does that have to do with fulfilling a misswah?? Absolutely nothing.

I'll tell you who is not ready. Those Mamlakhti rabbis aren't ready. They are ready to step on some toes, toes of government officials, some of whom they seem to worship, and the toes of Arabs, who they obviously fear, even though HaShem is on our side. After all, we want to do a misswah, don't we? Well, at least some of us do. In fact, aren't some of us like those of us, wandering in the wilderness, asking Moshe Rabbeinu, "How can WE, too, do this misswah?"

Well, one religious attorney I know, took this seriously. He wrote an official request to Israel's Chief Rabbinate, asking that it request permission from the Wakf for the Jewish People to be allowed to bring the Qorban Pesah. The Wakf is the Muslim religious authority in control of the Temple Mount. No matter what anyone, Arab or Jew, says, it is the the Wakf in control of what goes on, on the Temple Mount. When Jews are finally allowed to pray there, then you are welcome to correct me on this.

Anyway, when this attorney followed up on his registered letter to Israel's Chief Rabbinate, he found that "the letter did not exist." That's right. "It did not exist."

It wasn't received, and rejected, blasted, or responded to politely. It wasn't even sent back as "undeliverable." No. According to Israel's Chief Rabbinate the letter was never received.

That's our "Chief Rabbinate" for you.

And so, next year when you're discussing the Exodus from your Seder table, in the event that we are still unable to bring the Qorban Pesah, don't just talk about how sad it is that we are unable to bring it. Talk about what each and every one of us can do to make sure that we bring it, when we are given a second chance on the 14th Day of the Second Month, תשע"ד/5774.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Reformism Is Not Judaism

ט"ז לחודש השני תשע"ג

Times Of Israel: Why the Reform Movement is so Popular in Israel

Michael Boyden, April 23, 2013

It seems only natural to entitle this response with the exact opposite of the title of David Brent’s article in Times of Israel last Tuesday. David tells us that Reform Judaism is unpopular in Israel. Not only is it unpopular, he tells us, but “most Israelis agree that Reform Judaism is bad.”

It is not clear on what basis he reaches that conclusion. All public opinion surveys in recent years have shown precisely the opposite, so one can only assume that his observations are based upon his narrow circle of acquaintances rather than upon any objective assessment. (cont.)

Hmm... Popular, huh? That might very well be true.

First, let's take a look at some of the various strategies philosophies in which the "Reformismists" have manipulated struggled over the last few hundred years:
Rejecting the divine nature of the Torah sheb'al Peh (Oral Torah).
Respecting the historical aspect of the Torah sheb'al Peh, but not "feeling" bound by it.
Taking off their kippoth.
Putting their kippoth back on.
Making Shabbos on Sundays (like the goyim להבדיל)
Talking about spirituality, when that was seen to be attractive.
Talking about "social action" when that was seen to be attractive.
(Where was their "social justice" and "social action" for the sake of European Jews during the Holocaust?)
Refusing to make women "rabbis."
Making women "rabbis."
Refusing to make gays and lesbians "rabbis."
Making gays and lesbians "rabbis." 

Take your pick, depending on who you ask, the "Reform Movement" has tried them all. My main point here has something to do with hashqafah (perspective), but mainly about the hypocrisy involved throughout the history of "Reformism."

I have a theory, one which becomes increasingly more than just a theory, as each day passes.

Sure, the original "Reformismists" wanted to make life in Germany and France easier and more comfortable for Jews. But, in my opinion, that was simply the underlying selling point to it all.

The reality is that not only did they not believe in the unusurpable place which Torah sheb'al Peh holds in Judaism. They did not believe in Torah shebiKhtav (Written Torah) either! Yet, like the Tzadoqim (Sadducees), in my opinion, they knew all too well, just how powerful the Torah is. They knew that they could not attack it head; they had to attack it, a piece at a time.

Everything about the appearance of current day "Reformism" is connected to how to keep Jews stuck in galuth (exile), and duped into thinking that liberal, Western values and sensibilities are synonymous with Jewish values and sensibilities. Even though they are not. Intentional or not, it doesn't matter.

They call their path progressive, but it is anything but progressive. Many Jews are moving backwards, farther and farther away from The Almighty's precious Torah. And we have the "Reformismists" to thank for much of that.

Michael Boyden continues:
That a person should disparage “homosexual female tefillin wearing rabbis” probably says more about such an individual than it does about the rabbi, but that is another matter! (Incidentally, Bruria and Rashi’s daughters among others are reported to have laid tefillin.)
Throw a kippah, tallith, and tefillin on someone, who may or may not be Jewish, it doesn't matter in the least. It doesn't matter if that individual is a homosexual female or a heterosexual male. That individual may even be Jewish! The outward symbols, the accoutrements, do not magically turn that individual wearing them, into someone who leads those following to him, OR HER, down a Jewish path.

I do not even use the word "authentic" here, for that would give "Reformism" wriggle room for legitimacy, albeit minute. No doubt thy would take that ball and run with it.

As far as Rashi's Daughters are concerned, sure they were known to have worn tefillin. But, maybe Michael Boyden should take a look at their motivations for having done so. They were certainly not out to make a political statement about it, unlike certain other women. They were also tzanu'a (modest) about it. They had to be, because they were actually concerned about halakhah (Jewish Law). Whereas tzeni'uth (modesty) is the furthest concern from the minds of certain other women.

Well, so are "Reformismist" leaders are also concerned about halakhah, concerned about breaking it.

But there ARE some "Reformismists" who are concerned about halakhah. Of course, that depends on whom you ask, the day you ask, the year in history you ask, and, of course, his OR HER creative definition of halakhah. EVERYONE needs to have a creative definition of halakah! They're ALL the rage!

Maybe that is why "Reformism" is believed by some, to be so "popular." You get to do what you want, and even make it up as you go along!

There only seems to be one requirement: The acceptance of liberal, or "progressive," Western assimilationist ideology as being inherently Jewish,...even though it is not.

Whether this fills up their synagogues, or not, is irrelevant. Judaism is not a popularity contest; it is the prescribed way of life for a specific people, defined in a very specific manner

Of course, I have no problem whatsoever using the word "synagogue" when talking about "Reformism" places of gathering. Synagogue is, after all, a Greek word, Greek as in Hellenist, Hellenist as in those Jews killed in the battles leading up to one of the most politically-incorrect holidays celebrated in Judaism.

However, we should not think of these poor individuals, duped into believing that "Reformism" is Judaism, in the same way as the Hellenist Jews targeted by the Maccabees 2,176 years ago. It is not their fault. They do not know any better.

Boy, I'll bet that last sentence sure bruised a lot of egos, and switched on a lot of defense mechanisms. But, hopefully those individuals, some of them even Jews, will give themselves a break, and take the time to look into what Judaism really is. Leave a comment below, with your general location below, if you would like some help.

I have made few allusions to those who are "even" Jewish, or whom might be Jewish, throughout this post. That is due to those Jews who are told that they are "converting to Judaism," when in fact they are receiving nothing more than a sham conversion. Well, actually, it is something more than a sham conversion; it is a denigration of the Torah.*

Then there are those who are told that that they do not have to "convert," because they have a Jewish father.

It depends on which "Reformism" leader you ask. Maybe the time of day also makes a difference. I am not sure.

Oh, just one more thing, a suggestion for the Times Of Israel website. The subsequent times the word "rabbi" is applied to the likes of Michael Boyden, use these:

I am sure that I will not be able to convince you not allow the use of the word "rabbi." The number of your readers would certainly take a nose dive, and you would not be able to reach Jews who need to be reached.

I can understand that.

But, if you use quotation marks, them you would be doing the Jewish community, in Israel and abroad a great service.

Unlike Haredi and Settler bashing HaAretz, Ma'ariv, Yediot Aharonoth, Haredi and the certain Settler-bashing Jerusalem Post, and even Settler-friendly Arutz 7, you would at least be making a move the direction of publishing the truth. Thus, you would be aiding those poor, duped individuals, those blindly following the "Reformismists," those following the "Reformismists" for saying what they want to hear, and even those who were fooled into thinking that they are Jewish, wake up from their numbed out state of assimilation and exile.

Tell them them the truth. Tell them that "Reformism" is not Judaism.


*I am sure that there are a handful of "Reformism" spiritual guides who mean well. Unfortunately, the damage has been done.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Western Solution to a Middle Eastern Problem

ט"ו לחודש השני תשע"ג

Well, the title of this post could be about almost anything, and the mistake, repeated over and over and over again, in attempting to put this approach into action.

However, this evening, the criticism falls on MK Elazar Stern for proposing a liberal, Western-exile oriented solution to what is actually an international problem. Of course, many in the West, in Europe and North America do not even recognize any problem. I call it a Middle Eastern problem, because Israel is in the Middle East.

MK Stern
And so, a few days ago, MK Stern was attacked by an Eritrean citizen in South Tel-Aviv, had his kippah stepped on, and a cross waved in his face.

According to Tomer Devorah, MK Stern's "solution" for dealing with infiltrators into Israel is to spread them around the country more. Whether the Eritrean who attacked MK Stern is one such infiltrator or not is irrelevant. Is MK Stern seriously that wrapped up in co-dependent fear of not being considered politically-correct enough by colleagues such as MK Ruth Calderon (Yesh Atid) and MK Michal Roisin (Meretz), or perhaps by Europeans, that he would propose such ridiculous plan of action, and call it a "solution?"

Let's take a look at some of the Middle Eastern solutions to similar Middle Eastern problems.

Not so long ago, when Kuwait, with quite a bit of help from the United States, succeeded in kicking Iraqi military infiltration out of its Land, one of the first post-Gulf War actions it took was to kick out its entire "Palestinian" second class. Why? Well, not that it matters, but the "Palestinians" were dumb enough, or had integrity enough, not to hide their support for Iraq's leader Sadam Hussein. The Kuwaitis were not going to tolerate any of that. So, they kicked them out.

When Saudi Arabia welcomed California engineers into their country to assist in various projects in the 1970's (I believe), it came as no surprise that Jews were quietly told that they would not be participating. Snickers from behind scenes were immediately quieted when African-American engineers were told the same. The California engineers went anyway. Saudi Arabia has continued to do whatever it wants. Saudi Arabia knows that the non-Muslim world needs them more than they need non-Muslims.

Meanwhile, it is still illegal for a Jew to enter Saudi Arabia. There have not been any Jews in Saudi Arabia for considerable amount of time. Muhammad took care of that.

Nobody seems to think that they need Israel, economically. Attempts by some clever Israelis to remind the rest of the word that if they want to boycott us, then they had better boycott all of the high tech parts invented and produced here, as well as the award-winning wines from Yehudah and Shomron (Judea and Samaria).

It didn't work. Arab oil is just too important to piss off Arab countries. Even the "addicted to political-correctness" European countries prefer environmentally-incorrect Arabs, their oil, and their "religion of peace" (giggle) over Israel's high tech. They just ignore where those parts come from. They never liked Jews anyway, and are in complete denial that 400 year after Muslims were pushed back from Vienna, their present strategy has already achieved far more in the way of a takeover of Europe than just Vienna and east.

But, I digress....

When outsiders want something from us, they always seem to get it, don't they? The Israeli Government makes sure of it. For example, the Vatican just won part of Mt. Zion. How did the Vatican get it? The Vatican wanted it! And so, they moaned and groaned about it, until it got what it wanted!

By now, you are probably wondering what this all has to do with MK Stern, his ridiculous "solution," and Israel's illegal alien problem, more like illegal infiltration problem.

The point is that Stern's idiotic solution is much like the old Techiya Party's "solution" of annexing Yehudah and Shomron, without considering where to put the Arabs, and much like the current Jewish Home Party's idiotic "solution" annexing parts of Yehudah and Shomron, and granting the Arabs there either autonomy or Israeli citizenship. It is liberal, Western, globalist, and suicidal. It just seem to get worse and worse in Israel, as time goes by.

MK Stern isn't even talking about Arabs, who lay claims to our Homeland (much like the Seven Nations of old - hint, hint). He's talking about infiltrators who sneak into Israel, because they know they will have hope here; they will experience the hessed of the Jewish People.

Of course, hessed towards it own people,...well, that appears to be a completely different story, doesn't it?

And, why doesn't anyone every ask why the infiltrators do not bother to stop in Egypt, on the way from Eritrea, Sudan, and elsewhere? Why doesn't anyone ever question Egypt, Saudi Arabia, or Kuwait over their exclusionary practices?

Oh, isn't Israel so nice??!! NO! Israel is filled with co-dependent suckers!

Tell me something. Will fancy-shmancy Ramat-Aviv, K'far Sh'maryahu, and Kokhav Ya'ir be getting their fair share of the infiltrators, as part of MK Elazar Stern's "solution?"

I sincerely doubt it, not with their "Not in my neighborhood!" elitist attitudes.

Do YOU want infiltrators in YOUR neighborhood? No, I didn't think so.

So, why doesn't the Israeli government kick them out? That would see to be the Middle Eastern solution

We may never know the answer to such mysteries. But, I will hazard a guess that is something to do with "what the goyim would think." It would be such a shanda! ::eyes rolling::

Needless to say, in lieu of any serious action taken by the Israeli government to solve the illegal infiltration problem, in the meantime, my taking back of MK Elazar Stern's Brownie Points, previously awarded to him, will have to suffice,...for not.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Battle Of Torah vs. State Arrives In The IDF

פסח השני לשע"ג

The truth is that that battle has always been in the IDF. It is just not usually as visible as today.

Sure, the previous Chief IDF Rabbi Avichai Ronsky caused as a stir, when responding to a question as to whether it was permissible to save the life of a terrorist. He responded that yes, it was, if the information which could be obtained from the terrorist would lead to the saving of [Jewish] lives (or something like that). It was pretty clear that he was set up in way, enabling the Torah-absent, Labor Zionists, and other Leftists, to have yet another opportunity to demonize the religious right.

However, the IDF Rabbinate was silent regarding the matters of sacrificing soldiers lives for the sake of "innocent" enemy civilians, increased promiscuity, resulting from the integration of women into previously all-male, combat units, and, of course, the handing over of pieces of our Homeland, Eretz Yisrael, to a terrorist entity, and the IDF's involvement in doing so. Even though it the Land is not anyone's to give away, except The Almighty's, He Who brought His people back to it.

The Israeli Supreme Court has been telling rabbis how to rule on issues such as kashruth and conversion. Now, it seems the K'nesseth will be telling the IDF Chief Rabbi how to do his job as well.
IDF Chief Rabbi
Rafi Peretz
Army rabbinic rulings book declares ‘goyim’ don’t have equal rights in Israel, recommends that women not affix mezuzas

Stuart Winer, April 21, 2013

The IDF’s top rabbi came under fire Sunday, days after the publication of a book of IDF rabbinic rulings that said non-Jews do not have the same rights as Jewish citizens and that it is undesirable for women officers to perform the religious ceremony of attaching a mezuza to doorposts.

Opposition leader MK Shelly Yachimovich (Labor) condemned the statement about non-Jews as “dark and dangerous, against Jewish values, democratic values, the values of the IDF and the laws of the State and its declaration of independence.” (cont.)
Well, MK Yachimovich's perspective on what Jewish values are or are not, are simply,...not Jewish.

However, she very well may be correct on her stated fronts,...unfortunately.
...MK Elazer Stern (Hatnua) called on IDF Chief Rabbi Rafi Peretz to unequivocally declare that there is no place in the army’s literature for use of the phrase “goyim” — literally, “nations” — when referring to IDF soldiers.

“It is about time that the army rabbinate joined the real world of the IDF,” said Stern, who chairs the Knesset Religion and State lobby. “They are part of the people’s army, with all its different shades.” (cont.)
MK Elazar Stern's "real world" is not the Torah world, I am afraid. Nonetheless, I am far from surprised. It's as if MK Stern's religion is "The State of Israel," not Judaism. And, no, ladies and gentlemen, they are not one and the same. And, while we're at it, let us make sure not to confuse "The State of Israel" with Jewish sovereignty over the Land of Israel, either.

People's army? Which people? That's what I'd like to know, because he is certainly not talking about the Jewish People. Is he?

Um,...Sorry, folks, but the Torah is not always in line with the Western/assimilationist (ie. non-Jewish) mentality you grew up with. Non-Jews DON'T have the same rights as Jews in the Land of Israel, according to the Torah, whether you like it or not.

Check out the Ramba"m's Laws of Kings and their Wars for this and more politically incorrect rulings.

Why does the Israeli Defense Forces distribute Christian books (which they like to call the "New Testament")?

Why does the IDF allow non-Jews to give orders to Jews?

The list of halakhic (Torah legal) questions goes on.

Oh, but, what a minute.

What does the Israeli government care about halakhah (Torah Law)?

I would have to say that the answer is:


Rabbi Peretz, shortly before being thrown out
of his Gaza town of Atzmonah, which was
handed over to Arabs in 2005.
Now, as a side story, who knew that IDF Chief Rabbi Rafi Peretz went to Yeshivah High School with none other than MK Elazar Stern?? Also in their class was Gen. Yair Naveh. You remember Gen. Naveh, of course, who signed the order to kick out 20 Jews from their homes, as a preventative measure, in to order to allow the Arabs an uneventful olive harvest. The fact that these men could not go to work, nor work their lands, nor support their families did not appear to be first on Gen. Naveh's list of considerations.

But, I digress...

Anyway, this class at the now infamous Netiv Meir Yeshivah was named the "Generals' Class," having produced three generals.

And so, I have no doubt that Rabbi Peretz will remember his mamlakhti (undying State loyalist) roots, cave in to pressure from the K'nesseth, and choose "democracy" over Torah.

After all, you can't have both.

Islamicized Sweden? So What?

י"ג לחודש השני תשע"ג
Op-Ed: Islamicized Sweden Has Declared War on the Jews
Violence dominates the streets and a Jew in Sweden today feels like a Jew in Berlin in the '20s.

Giulio Meotti, April 20, 2013

In 2003, Azzam Tamimi, a Hamas member from Hevron, delivered a sermon at the Great Mosque in Stockholm, expressing support for suicide attacks against Israeli civilians. Outside the mosque, militants distributed leaflets containing calls to "liquidate the Jews in Palestine in the name of Allah"....

...The Jews of Malmö, a community of about 1,500 in a city of 300,000 led by an anti-Semite like Reepalu, is a microcosm of what is happening elsewhere in the West.

In Sweden, which has one of the largest Muslim communities in Europe, the Jewish communities spend 25 per cent of their funds on security measures. It is a ghettoized and dying community.

Violence dominates the streets and a Jew in Sweden today feels like a Jew in Berlin in the '20s. (cont.)
Guilio Meotti makes some good points. If you continue reading his Op-Ed, you will no doubt find even more good points.

However, his piece comes down to only one solution, one which he fails to mention. And so, I will mention it for him.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I will say the same thing I have told French Jews, Belgian Jews, Danish Jews, British Jews, South African Jews, and so on:

Jews! Get out of Europe! Can't you take a hint??!!

What the heck are you still doing there?! Forget about whether you still deluded into thinking that it is safe for you and your families where you are. Get out!

Come live in the only true Homeland of the Jews, Eretz Yisra'el, the Land of Israel.

Think you're not supposed to come until Mashi'ah arrives? Good luck. You'll need it. The kicks in the pants received by Jews in Sweden, and elsewhere, are hints which you are refusing to take, and they are only going to get worse.

How do I know this? Divine inspiration? Bath-Qol?

No. My eyes are open. Now open yours.

Guilo Meotti continues...
Unfortunately, many Swedish Jewish leaders have capitulated to the ghetto mentality as well.

When popular daily Aftonbladet falsely charged the IDF of harvesting Palestinians Arabs' organs and Israel asked the Swedish government to issue a condemnation, Lena Posner, head of the Jewish community in Stockholm and president of the Official Council of Jewish Communities in Sweden, declared: "Israel caused all this mess."
Sounds like the sins of the spies to me (Num. 13-14), only much worse. Will such individuals, and those who listen to them, even be allowed to come into the Land? I pray that they do teshuvah (repent), by preparing to make aliyah (immigrate to Israel), and encourage all other Jews in their community to do the same.

It does not matter whether Sweden is becoming part of a reincarnating Caliphate right before yours eyes,...or not.

Now, get on the plane. For that matter, trains and boats may work, just as well.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Israel's Illegal Alien Problem: Knesset Member Gets Attacked!

י"ב לחודש השני תשע"ג

Channel 2 News: An Eritrean Struck MK Elazar Stern on the Head During his Tour of South Tel-Aviv
MK Stern after the attack
(Photo: Channel 2 News)

Gil'ad Shalmor, April 22, 2013

The Police arrested a foreigner from Eritrea in South Tel-Aviv, after he struck MK Elazar Stern on the head, while he was arriving for a visit in order to check into the matter of infiltrators. He [the foreigner] waved a chain with a cross in back of him, took off his kippah [by striking him], and stepped on it. (cont.)

*According to the newscast, MK Stern tried to ignore the attacker before he incurred his wrath.

(Tip Credit: Miriam at Leben In Jerusalem)

Esser Agaroth (2¢):
Well, I guess MK Stern did, indeed, get a first hand look into the matter of infiltrators, didn't he?

Seriously, though, I may not be a fan of MK Stern, nor a fan of the current government. But, what would happen to someone who did this to a government official in any other country?

"Channel 2 News: African citizen struck MK Stern."
(screen shot)
It will be very interesting to see if Stern's attacker gets prosecuted to the full extent of the law, or at least get deported. But, of course, we are leaving in co-dependent "worry about the non-Jews liking us" Israel, so the attacker may just be let off with a smack on the hand, because he did not know he struck a Member of the Israeli Parliament [MK], as if that should even matter, or because of some other lame excuse.

In Israel, it is even a crime to call a government official a name. Remember what happened to Nadia Matar of Women In Green? (So much for a "democratic" right to free speech!)
And, if MK Stern's attacker does suffer any consequences, I wonder how long it will take for the rest of the world (ie. "international community") to call Israel racist for exacting justice.

Outcries from will certainly be heard from Israel's Left, about making gross generalizations. "Racial sensitivity" workshops will be demanded in the public schools, and MK Stern will be praised for not striking back OR be blasted for not running after his assailant in order to beg for more: "Thank you, sir! May I have another?!" -"Animal House" (1978)

Also, is it just me, or does everyone else see the clearly anti-Jewish acts involved here? Waving a cross, walking over a kippah (Jewish head covering)? This suspect has the hutzpah to do such things against the very people who are "hosting" him?

It seems to me like he's biting the hand that feeds him, the very least.

Maybe this thug is simply had the integrity to reveal what all frum (להבדיל) Christians truly believe, that they are the true inheritors of The Almighty's favor for fulfilling His Will, and thus the true inheritors of the Holy Land, the Land of Israel (אמרי שקר).

Food for thought. 

Nevertheless, Israel has an illegal alien problem. But, the illegal aliens are not the problem; the Israeli government is.

Throughout the history of the so-called "Jewish State," we have seen attempts by the Labor Zionist left to gain power through a falsified perception of democratic support. Goyim from the Ukraine have been shipped in to vote for the left. But that backfired, because many of them ended up voting for Avigdor Lieberman's "Israel Our Home" Part.

Christians were brought in from Ethiopia, piggy backing on the Jews and righteous converts, and then blending in nicely with the Ethiopian Churches strongholds.

"Special status" is still on the agenda for the children (and soon their parents?) of foreign workers. Of course, that's a code phrase for "We'll HAVE to give them citizenship when they serve in the IDF,...or even if they don't."

Christians from North America have been sneaking into the citizenship track through voluntary service in the IDF, too. Perhaps they would vote "right-wing," but the goal of de-Judaization of Israel, and "freedom of religious expression" are still served through their integration into Israeli society, not to mention their invariable intermarriages, and preying on Jewish souls.

But, I digress...

I cannot help but wonder if the opening of the infiltration floods gates was just another attempt by the Labor Zionist left at its demographic manipulation which went horribly wrong.

Yet, more food for thought.

In the meantime, stay tuned to the saga of Israel's illegal alien problem. And, although you may be dying to learn the ending of this saga, let us pray that no once actually has to die, before the saga ends.

In conclusion, MK Elazar Stern receives two brownie points (with nuts), one for being a member of a government who actually bothers to go out on the streets to see things for himself, least once, and two, for being a moser nefesh (self-sacrificing) at least once, albeit an unintentional one.

I have also decided that he deserves his own topic tag on Esser Agaroth (2¢). I have no doubt that this will not be the last time I write about MK Stern. Although my guess is that this post will probably be the most positive one I ever write about him. Just check these out, and you'll know what I mean.

MK Stern's attacker receives four Voldemorts, for being a super-duper schmuck, and that's being kind.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Jew Me Down

י"א לחודש השני תשע"ג

OK, so by now many of you have seen this video of Oklahoma State Rep. Dennis Johnson (R-Duncan), in which he he uses the expression "Jew down the price."

I don't even have to do a search in order to know for certain that Jews around the United States are in outrage. The Anti-Defamation League[ADL] which I like to refer to as the Arab Defense League, is no doubt foaming at its proverbial mouth.Yes, it's 2013, and people like this still exist. This guy probably did not even think anything of it, or maybe he did. Yet, what short memories my brothers and sisters have. It is as if they think things are going to change. But, they're not.

Why on earth do Jews still think they are supposed to live in a country like this?? The standard of living? The relative safety? None of that matters.

The U. S. is not your country. It is the country of your TEMPORARY exile. Sure, after 2,000 years of being in exile, it is so easy for us to forget this, and many of us unfortunately have. But, but by the Grace of The Holy One, Blessed Be He, you are now able to come back to your ONLY true homeland, Eretz Yisra'el, the Land of Israel. And, now is time to come home.

Rep. Johnson is not the threat. His comments are neither here nor there. Stop wasting your time and energy getting into a hissy fit over such people, and what they say.

Just remember the old children's rhyme, and you can't go wrong:

"Sticks and stones may break our bones, but bombs and internment camps will kill us. And God put people like Rep. Johnson on earth, in order to warn us."

Now, go pack your bags and get on the plane.

In Honor Of The UN's Anniversary

י"א לחודש השני תשע"ג

Well, it's not exactly the UN's Anniversary. But, when I saw that the anniversary of the UN's Conference on International Organization was this week, I just could not contain myself, and had to grab the opportunity, which just fell into my lap, to put up one of my dream posts.
Wikipedia: United Nations History
After the League of Nations failed to prevent World War II (1939–1945), there was widespread recognition that humankind could not afford a third world war. Therefore, the United Nations was established to replace the flawed League of Nations in 1945 in order to maintain international peace and promote cooperation in solving international economic, social, and humanitarian problems. The earliest concrete plan for a new world organization was begun under the aegis of the U.S. State Department in 1939. Franklin D. Roosevelt first coined the term 'United Nations' as a term to describe the Allied countries. The term was first officially used on 1 January 1942, when 26 governments signed the Atlantic Charter, pledging to continue the war effort. On 25 April 1945, the UN Conference on International Organization began in San Francisco, attended by 50 governments and a number of non-governmental organizations involved in drafting the United Nations Charter. The UN officially came into existence on 24 October 1945 upon ratification of the Charter by the five then-permanent members of the Security Council—France, the Republic of China, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States—and by a majority of the other 46 signatories. The first meetings of the General Assembly, with 51 nations represented, and the Security Council, took place in Methodist Central Hall Westminster in London beginning 6 January 1946.

I think this photo is WAY too kind to the UN.
Sure, we have all seen the above photo going around. Real or doctored, it doesn't matter. It's more than true. The real truth is that this body of United Nothings is actually quite harmful to Jewish health, both physically and spiritually.

Israel should immediately resign its membership in this United Nations of Esau and Yishma'el, and refuse to be beholden to the bribes, extortion, and other forms of blackmail from outside entities.

Yeah, right! As if THAT is gonna happen today!

But, what can happen today is my presentation of the praise which the Undignified Namby-Pambies deserves.

So, in honor of the April 25th Anniversary of the UN Conference on International Organization, which led to the UN Charter's adoption in the following October, I have decided to post some "dream photos." I say "dream photos," because I would NEVER encourage anyone to go out and vandalize UN through heinous acts of graffiti.

("Accidental") terrorist assistance in South Lebanon;
Ambulance gun-running in Azza. Need I say more?

Silly, requisite, male humor.

Any arguments?

More silly, requisite, male humor.

So clueless, he doesn't even notice the spray-painted dots on his clothes!

Even more silly, requisite, male humor.
*Click here for the definition of "punter."

I desperately wanted to do one more, very naughty one. But, my friends all said that it would sink Esser Agaroth to such a low level of self-debasement, that it would recover, nor regain any respect,...ever. So, I decided to let my dream go, and not do it.

Let's just say it has to do with the "powers' that be" desire for "Contiguous United Nations Territory," and leave it at that.

But, by all means, please leave your ideas below as comments. And, please keep 'em clean!

Haveil Havalim #405 Is Up!

י"א לחודש השני תשע"ג

The 405th edition of the Haveil Havalim Blog Carnival is up at Ima 2 Seven.

"This edition of the Haveil Havelim is dedicated to those that have fallen or have been injured due to terror. In Boston, in Israel, in the world. When the world wakes up to global jihad as an international problem, perhaps we will finally stand up to evil and end the suffering."

Reading Ruth: MK Ruth Calderon In The Hotseat

מוצש"ק פר' אחרי קדושים תשע"ג

No, by "Reading Ruth," I do not mean reading Megillath Ruth from the Tana"kh (Bible), which is traditionally read by many on the upcoming holiday of Shavu'oth.

Rather, I mean I mean "Reading," as in the art of insult, and "Ruth," as in MK Ruth Calderon.

Are you sitting down? Good. Here I go.

Tablet: Ruth Calderon Calls Out Bigotry
Condemns anti-Arab racism and homophobia at controversial religious Zionist conference

Yair Rosenberg, April 18, 2013

Readers may remember Dr. Ruth Calderon as the new member of Knesset who turned her first parliamentary address into a Talmud lecture, the video of which quickly went viral. The Torah is not the property of any stream,” said Calderon, a secular Talmud teacher who has founded pluralistic Jewish study houses across Israel, during the speech. “We gave it away, when we thought there was a more important task, to build the army and the state and farming and industry. Now we must take back what is ours.”

Since then, as a result of her activism in Israeli society and now her role in the Knesset as a member of Yesh Atid, Calderon has emerged as the standard bearer for a new generation of non-Orthodox and non-religious Israelis seeking to reclaim their heritage, and to break the country’s Orthodox monopoly on Judaism.(cont.)

Esser Agaroth (2¢):
"Whateva! I do what I want!"
MK Ruth Calderon is fed up with homophobia? No problem. You will see the place of honor I grant one former member of the GLBTQ community below. I say "former," because s/he's dead.

Now, as for the all of those words above, I have highlighted in red, they are simply code phrases for "Whateva! I do what I want!"

They support the notion that something more than "Talumdic scholarship" is at play here.

Sheesh! I have already brought up MK Ruth Calderon a few times on Esser Agaroth (2¢), and she has only been an MK for a few months! If this keeps up, I may even have to add a "MK Ruth Calderon" topic label.

The so called "right-wing" Ramle conference allowed her to participate, and ended up with egg on its face.

Would a leftist conference do the same? I think not.

And what did MK Ruth Calderon talk about? Being fed up with anti-Arab racism. Remember, I suggested that I would stay away from the issue of homophobia,...for now.

And, why do you suppose that there are anti-Arab racists in Israel?

Rockets from the south, rockets from the north, bombings, shootings, and attempted poisonings aside, of course...

MK Ruth Calderon's "Talmudic scholarship" should have taught her about the nature of Yishma'el. The nature of this people stems all the way back from its who was described as a "wild ass of a man" (Gen. 16:12).

It is true, that in the end Yishma'el did do teshuvah. He repented. However, his children did not.

MK Ruth Calderon should know that throughout Tana"kh (The Bible), and in the Talmudim of which she is supposed to be a "scholar," there are countless references to the nature of the Yishma'elites: thieving, marauding, and debauchery. Having no connection to the Land of Israel WHATSOEVER, it is clear that Yishma'elites have crossed into Israel when it is weak, taken advantage of that weakness, and have then left, moving onto their next victims.

But, she apparently does not.

Yet, MK Ruth Calderon should have observed the change in strategy by the Yishma'elim. When seeing that the Jews would building up the Land, they flowed into Israel, from all over. They came from Syria, from Lebanon (the southern part of which is really Israel, which she should know), from Jordan, and from Egypt. Either the Ottoman authorities did not care, or they encouraged it.

Then in 1967, because force is what Yishma'elites understand, they started to settled down, realizing that the Jews are here to stay, and maybe even that God was on our side after all, and started working with Jews, even becoming employed by them.

But, apparently, she did not.

MK Ruth Calderon should also have heard the expression...

There is no promiscuity like the promiscuity of Yishma'el. אין זנות כזנות ישמעאל
-Avoth d'Rabbi Nathan (among others)

But, apparently, she has not.

MK Ruth Calderon should be familiar with post-Talmudic history, such as the dawn of Islam, which including the near genocide of Jews residing in the Southern Arabian Penninsula. Even today, Jews are banned from Saudi Arabia. But, of course, no one wants to discuss THAT in the mainstream news media, or to call it racist, lest someone decides to pull the plug on their oil supply!

But, apparently, she is not.

But, maybe I have been unfair to MK Ruth Calderon. Maybe she does know all of the above, but...
1. She doesn't believe any of what she is a "scholar" in
2. OR she is naive, and believes in the Western/assimilationist line of trying to force the Arab's square peg into a Western, circular hole.
3. OR she is quite skilled in manipulating the sources, and I have, indeed, underestimated her.
"She Who Must
Not Be Named"
MK Ruth Calderon receives a score of one (nope. not a Sea Hag, but a) "She Who Must Not Be Named," for not even bothering to try to convince us why women should not have to cover their hair.

Now, to hammer the point home, I have included a video, which explains the concept of "reading."

I doubt I did as good of a job that the interviewee in the video could have done, but tried my best at "Reading Ruth."

I have no doubt that this video will offend many, the religious due to its content, and the GLBTQ community and their friends, for daring to apply it in this context. Yet, with everybody, including religious Jews, buzzing about, and raving about gay marriage, having fallen prey to the distraction strategies of the "powers that be," you will be seeing quite a bit of leftist content on Esser Agaroth (2¢) thrown back into faces of hypocrites leftist.

In other words, Leftists, prepare to get a taste of your own medicine.

Actually, it will be more like a choking gulp than a taste.
**Profanity Alert!**

The "Legendary Mother," Dorian Corey (R. I. P.)
explains the arts of insult "Reading" and "Shade," 
in a clip from the film "Paris Is Burning" (1990).

Hmm,... What DON'T I have to tell MK Ruth Calderon?

Friday, April 19, 2013

Jewish Prayer On The Temple Mount

ערב שבת קודש פר'אחרי-קדושים תשע"ג
(ט' לחודש השני)
38th Anniversary of the town of modern day Ofrah (Josh. 18:23)

So far, the article below has elicited comments from friends such as...

"At least there is one man in the Knesset."
-The Kalashnikover Rebbe

"Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount!"

JPost: 'Jews should be able to pray on Temple Mount'
Daniel K. Eisenbud, April 18, 2013

New Interior C’tee head Regev says she plans to tour holy site; Meretz MK warns initiative could sabotage peace process.

MK Miri Regev (Likud), appointed Wednesday to chair the Knesset Interior and Environmental Affairs Committees, generated heated controversy when she said she intended to tour the Temple Mount with Interior Committee members to further the possibility of legalizing Jewish prayer at the site.

“Jews can pray at the Temple Mount,” said Regev, who in her new role could play a pivotal part in changing longstanding legislation barring Jewish visitors from praying there.

In a statement to the press Wednesday, she added that she will not hesitate to address the highly controversial issue.

“I don’t understand why a Jew is not allowed to pray in the most sacred place for him – the Temple Mount,” she said. “I intend to soon tour there, with an emphasis on freedom of Jewish prayer.”

MK Michal Roisin (Meretz) swiftly condemned Regev’s comments in a statement Wednesday, warning that her words could sabotage the peace process and ignite a “third intifada.”

“This is a low attempt and a cynical use of religion for political purposes to sabotage the peace process,” said Roisin.

“The government operates on an internal contradiction – on the one hand, it claims to adhere to the outline of two states for two peoples; and on the other hand, initiatives like this one by MK Regev hinder the process of negotiating.”

Roisin warned that it was just such an initiative by former prime minister Ariel Sharon in 2000 that ignited the second intifada. (cont.)

Esser Agaroth (2¢):
Before I dive into this issue please allow me one aside. Is it me, or are there others who refuse to tolerate split infinitives?! Daniel, if MK Regev made the above statement in English, which I seriously doubt, then you're off the hook. But, if she made it in Hebrew, and it was translated into English, well, then I am VERY disappointed in you.

'Nuff said.

And, now, on with my in depth analysis...

MK Regev is correct.

Whereas, MK Roisin is the perfect example of a "self-hating, co-dependent, assimilated, stuck in galuth, even though she's in Israel" Jew.

How was that for "in depth?"

OK. Seriously, now, how could anyone possibly be surprised that a sniveling Meretznik would step up to make such a comment.

Ruin the peace process, and start a third intifada??

First of all, the ultra-leftist/assimilationist Meretz "vision of peace" not only involves the absence of anything remotely related to a Jewish quality to "Jewish sovereignty" over Israel (what would be left of it), but leads the Jewish People down the path of self-destruction, beginning with the piece-by-piece destruction of our God-given Homeland. Thus, MK Roisin is interested in Israel's full participation in the "piece process," not the peace process.

Second of all, a third intifada? Anyone who thinks that we're not still in the intifada which began before the First Intifada is insane, self-hating, Western/assimilationist. What a minute. I must apologize for being redundant. What I meant to say is that such individuals must be insane. The Arabs are going to riot and kill, take a break, riot and kill, take a break, and riot and kill, LIKE THEY'VE ALWAYS DONE! ...with or without the Temple Mount, which they only recently decided was theirs, and then made up the requisite lies to back up their story.

As I have said previously, the latest buzz phrase, "freedom of religious expression," seems to get applied to everyone else besides Torah-observant Jews. And governments filled with those like MK Roisin are the reasons behind this fact.

Meanwhile, back in the K'nesseth, here are the possible outcomes of this afair.
Potential Outcome Predictions [POP]:
1. MK Regev will back down.
2. MK Regev will be hung out to dry by PM Netanyahu.
3. MK Regev will be strung up by PM Netanyahu, and her name will be mysteriously absent from the Likud's list of candidates in the next elections.
4. It will be revealed that MK Regev will was set up to do PM Netanyahu's dirty work, to satisfy the right, and to distract us, while he gives up other parts of Israel in "piece process."
5. PM Netanyahu will wait and see which way the wind blows, and then decide what to do with MK Regev. Make her a Minister at the next opportunity? Or condemn her at the next opportunity?
Stay tuned.

And so, MK Regev (Likud) receives a score of one Eretz Yisrael. But, she only gets one (out of a possible five) for her lukewarm excitement over Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount.
*Look closely at the map. I am afraid I couldn't fit in all of modern day Iraq.

Let's just hope she goes to the miqwah (ritual purification pool) first, and dresses appropriately. Only then, will I be able to call her a positive example for B'noth Yisra'el.

Sea Hag
MK Roisin (Meretz), on the other hand, receives, you guessed it! One of these...

And, for her use of the word "pluralism" as a code word for "Arab rights, but not Torah-observant Jewish rights," she also gets 1/2 of a Zoabi.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Palestinian Press Posts Pretty Pictures...Of Temple Mount Activists

ח' לחודש השני תשע"ג

The Arabic language news site Panet reported on a Jewish demonstrating on Israeli Independence Day, which was observed on Tuesday.  

(Tip Credit: The Kashnikover Rebbe)

Google Translate's version of the article in English is below. Although much improvement is needed, you can actually get the gist of it. I highlight a few suspicious (ie. nonobjective) words in red bold which stand out to me, and provide my Esser Agaroth (2¢) below. Even if most of these words which stand out have been translated in accurately here, the taint is there.

The demonstrators all appear positive and upbeat. Some smiles, but no sour faces, and without even a hint of an aggressive pinky finger. But, don't take my word for it. I have posted only a few of the photos here. I suggest that you check out the rest of photos and video which were posted by the Arab press itself.

(For the original in Arabic, click here.)

April 16, 2013

Circulated Mahmoud Abu Atta of "Al-Aqsa Foundation" issued a press release to the media and got a copy of it to Annette and newspaper Panorama, said:

"Does it bother you that this is on the T-shirt?
Why doesn't it bother you that this is on HaShem's Mount?"

Green Poster: "Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount!"
White Poster: "Jewish independence on the Temple Mount!"

"Gathering ho 40 settlers of different ages, Tuesday, 04/16/2013 at five in the afternoon, at a roundabout (Paris) - In the west of Jerusalem, close to the so-called (home of Israeli Prime Minister) - carrying banners demanding the Hebrew tightly control occupation Al-Aqsa Mosque, and give the Israelis the performance of rituals Talmudic inside Aqsa without limitation or restriction. this and raise the settlers the Israeli flag, and slogans in Hebrew Among these logos (independence of the Temple Mount) - a named occupational falsehood Al-Aqsa Mosque -, Logo (Western Wall is the station temporary The goal is (the Temple Mount), also chanted sound the same slogans. "

Yellow Poster: "The Kotel is the parking lot. The Mount is the House [Temple]."
Purple Flag: "HaShem is The King."
"The Al-Aqsa Foundation," in a statement: "This group of settlers began Bmsertha towards the Old City of Jerusalem, adjacent to the neighborhood (Mamilla) - near the Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem, that monitors the Al-Aqsa Foundation move the march Judaization, and Stewavicm more," - here the This came in a press statement circulated by Mahmoud Abu Atta of "Al-Aqsa Foundation" on the media got a copy of it to site بانيت and Panorama newspaper.

Esser Agaroth (2¢):
Settlers? Well, either that's the word they like to use as a pejorative for the sake of the so-called "international community," or they believe that all Jews residing in Israel are settlers.
PA "President" Mahmud Abbas (Abu Mazen) and the Arabs want ALL of Israel.
So-called home of Israeli Prime Minister? Probably because they do not recognize Israel as an autonomous nation.

The word "occupation" was thrown around, suggesting their belief that the Temple Mount is "occupied" by Jews. Even though Torah-observant Jews are not allowed the "freedom of religious expression," every other religious group in Israel seems to receive. Even their own words above "...and give the Israelis the performance of rituals Talmudic inside Aqsa without limitation or restriction," indicates that we do not already have these rights.

Falsehood? Judaization? Arab attempts at revisionist history (ie. lies).

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Mourning Mexican Food: Where's My Burrito?!

ז' לחודש השני תשע"ג

I had been planning to write about the profound effects of having to live without Mexican food for quite sometime. During the almost 16 years I have resided in Israel, I have yet to find anything remotely close to good, Mexican food. Argentine, yes; Mexican, no.

"Big deal," you tout?

Well, while I was searching for material for this post, I came across this quote from Hadice, posting about Carne Asada Burritos at Of course, only those of you from the Southwest U. S. and Mexico will have any chance whatsoever of understanding its significance:
"For all of you poor, displaced San Diego-ites, the quest to find an authentic carne asada burrito is always disappointing, until now.... It's been over 4 years since I was in S.D. last and I have been craving this burrito ever since. I ate 5 of these bad boys in 2 days. I would take a bite, close my eyes, and dream of La Jolla, Balboa park or a stroll around Seaport Village. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did."
I am one of those "poor, displaced San Diego-ites," more properly known as "San Diegueños." Although I have no intention of living anywhere else besides Israel, I do see San Diego as my "hometown," or rather my "city of origin." And, although I miss very few material things from the old country, Mexican food IS one of them.

I grew up, believing that "Mexican foods" were "American foods." My Spanish-speaking father's incessant "Where's the salsa?" only reinforced this inaccurate notion. Nonetheless, these may not have been "American foods," but they were most definitely San Diegan foods. There is even a debate over the origin of the fish taco. Mexicans will insist that it's from Mexico; Americans will explain to you that its origins lie in San Diego.

I was in shock anytime I met an American, obviously not from the Southwest, who thought that anything made with a tortilla was called a taco.

"Blasphemy!" I would scream inside my head.

"The Border"
Many are surprised to hear of a steak or a nice piece of fish can be thought of as Mexican. Those same people are surprised to hear that San Diego really DOES border Mexico. After all, how many Americans actually live next to an international border? Not many.

The obvious solution to the problem is to make my own. Once in a blue moon, I do, because it's such a pain in the neck, and the ingredients found in Israel are, shall we say, less than adequate. White wheat flour tortillas from Turkey? I mean, c'mon! Do I really have to go any further?

Fortunately, I have been able to survive with the help of a salsa recipe I received from friends. The above reference to "San Diego style" I can only guess means with avocado, as the last time I checked, San Diego County supplies the rest of the the U. S. with something like an unbelievably high, 75 percent of its avocados. I never liked avocado as a kid. That's why I do not remember the expression.

Now, I do, and so I make guacamolé from time to time.

But, I digress...

There is a much easier solution to my carne asada burrito woes: shwarmah. What is shwarma, you ask? Well, it's basically meat wrapped in something made from ground grain.

Let's take a look at the similarities, each item being analogous (in my opinion) to the item in the same row:
Carne Asada Burrito
carne asada
refried beans
(pareve) sour cream
salsa/hot sauce (w/cilantro)
hot peppers
zhug (w/cilantro)
You can even get spicy carrots in Israel! And, now, jalepeño peppers are becoming increasingly easier to find.

Sure, they are not the same thing. The meat is different and their respective spiciness is of a different quality. Nonetheless, shwarmah makes a great substitute, for when the occasional urge for a carne asada burrito strikes me.

Sure enough, such narishkeit fades away over time, one local dish replacing the other.

The Only Redeeming Quality Of Lag b'Omer

ו' לחודש השני תשע"ג
(Israeli Independence Day - observed)

The Nicholsberger Rebbe
with bow and arrow
One of the only redeeming qualities of Lag b'Omer is the custom of shooting a bow and arrow. Children play bow and arrows, but even the adults get involved for at least one shot.

You may have thought that this custom originated from the use of bows and arrows during the Bar-Kokhba revolt, or from some other Jewish warrior oriented era. After all, the students of Rabbi Aqiva whose deaths Jews mourn during the Omer, were not only scholars, but warriors who fought against the oppressive rule of the Romans.

However, this custom apparently did not originate from Jewish heroic feats, but rather from a time for which the bow is simply something symbolic.

The story is told that during the time of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, not a single rainbow was seen. The rainbow represents the punishment of a flood which we deserved, yet the also the promise from HaShem that he never implement it. The story continues that in Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai's merit, the punishment was never deserved,...thus the absence of rainbows. Get it?

So, then why do I believe this is one of the only redeeming customs of Lag b'Omer?

Well, because maybe one, even one kid shooting a bow and arrow, might just get the juke idea in his head that shooting a bow and arrow is cool, and want to learn archery for real. Then, when the Israeli government completes its task of taking all of our guns away (חו"ח ולא עלינו), this one kid, but hopefully more, will be able to pass on this skill to others, when the need arises.

Of course, Jews are hardly strangers to archery. When Yehonathan ben Sha'ul tells David how he will signal him...
 שמואל א כ ואני, שלשת החצים צדה אורה, לשלח לי, למטרה.

I Samuel 20:20 And I will shoot three arrows to the side-ward, as though I shot at a mark.

And, after Yehonathan's death in battle, King David remembers him.

 שמואל ב א,יז וקנן את-הקינה הזאת, על-שאול, ועל-יהונתן בנו. יח ויאמר, ללמד בני-יהודה קשת...כב מדם חללים, מחלב גברים--קשת יהונתן, לא נשוג אחור; וחרב שאול, לא ישוב ריקם.

II Samuel 1:17 And David lamented with this lamentation over Sha'ul and over Yehonathan his son,  18 and said--To teach the sons of Yehudah the bow....22 From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of Yehonathan did not recoil, and the sword of Sha'ul did not return empty. 

Jews should also be encouraged to learn martial arts, as well as how to use knives, sling shots, and slings. You know, "just in case."

Remember the sling?

שמואל א יז,מט וישלח דוד את-ידו אל-הכלי, ויקח משם אבן ויקלע, ויך את-הפלשתי [גלית], אל-מצחו; ותטבע האבן במצחו, ויפל על-פניו ארצה.

I Samuel 17:49 And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slung it, and smote the Philistine [Goliath] in his forehead; and the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell upon his face to the earth.

Here's a great video on how to make a sling. It's not as difficult as I thought, and, unlike firearms, is not regulated by the government,...yet.

If we are going to have a holiday, which interrupts the mourning of Rabbi Akiva's students, then let us at least remember why they died in the first place. Let us also learn from history, instead of repeating it, and be prepared to deal with oppressive, foreign governments, just like they did.