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Remembering the Warsaw ghetto fighters

Ynet:

Polish officials unveiled a new monument Thursday honoring the last group of Jewish insurgents to escape from Warsaw’s burning ghetto in 1943 as the Nazis crushed the revolt against their brutal rule. 

It was a doomed struggle, but some managed to survive, and today the act of resistance stands as a source of pride for many Jews, especially in Israel. With the remaining ghetto population facing mass deportations to death camps, the insurgents rose up in April 1943 and managed to hold off the German army for nearly a month before being crushed. 

Learn more about the Warsaw ghetto uprising here.

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Thursday, May 27th, 2010 at 5:54 AM  | David Kuner

IDF: “Aid” mission is a provocation

Eight ships carrying hundreds of activists are making their way through the Mediterranean towards Gaza. The ships, which were organized by the Turkish group IHH together with other leftist European organizations, are said to be on an “aid” mission.

But Colonel Moshe Levi, commander of the Gaza District Coordination Office, told reporters that there is no shortage of food or equipment in the Hamas-ruled territory. Currently, Israel allows 100 trucks to enter Gaza each day. In the last few months these trucks have delivered over 1,200 tons of medicine and medical eqiupment, 155 tons of food, 2,900 tons of clothes and footwear, and approximately 3.85 million gallons of deisel oil.

It is clear that if there is a humanitarian crisis in Gaza, it’s not because of Israel. The “aid mission” on its way to Gaza seems to have a political agenda, not a humanitarian one.

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Wednesday, May 26th, 2010 at 2:18 PM  | afarkas

IDF: "Aid" mission is a provocation

Eight ships carrying hundreds of activists are making their way through the Mediterranean towards Gaza. The ships, which were organized by the Turkish group IHH together with other leftist European organizations, are said to be on an “aid” mission.

But Colonel Moshe Levi, commander of the Gaza District Coordination Office, told reporters that there is no shortage of food or equipment in the Hamas-ruled territory. Currently, Israel allows 100 trucks to enter Gaza each day. In the last few months these trucks have delivered over 1,200 tons of medicine and medical eqiupment, 155 tons of food, 2,900 tons of clothes and footwear, and approximately 3.85 million gallons of deisel oil.

It is clear that if there is a humanitarian crisis in Gaza, it’s not because of Israel. The “aid mission” on its way to Gaza seems to have a political agenda, not a humanitarian one.

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Wednesday, May 26th, 2010 at 2:18 PM  | afarkas

Christian support for Israel: No strings attached

Earlier this month, we linked to this piece written by Rabbi Steven Pruzansky. In it, the rabbi explodes some of the myths that surround Christian support for Israel:

What of the Christian belief that utilizes support for Israel in order to advance a distinctly Christian eschatological agenda? I don’t believe this is the case. I have spoken to evangelicals – leaders and laymen – and to a person they have rooted their support for Israel and love for Jews in the Bible’s admonition (Isaac’s blessing to Jacob) “those who curse you will be cursed, and those who bless you will be blessed.”

Not long after that, Pastor John Hagee had this to say on the subject in a good op-ed published in Ha’aretz:

Some worry that our efforts [to support Israel] are motivated by a desire to convert Jews. Others posit that our Zionism is tied to an effort to speed the second coming of Jesus. Both of these allegations are flat wrong … Like all people of faith, we Christians firmly believe that our religion is true. But we also believe in religious freedom and have enormous respect for the Jewish faith … Regarding the other allegation, the fact is that the vast majority of Christian Zionists and Evangelicals do not believe there is anything we can do to hasten the second coming of Jesus. Our theology is clear that we humans are utterly powerless to change God’s timetable.

Rabbi Eckstein has addressed this issue as well:

The truth is, Evangelicals support Israel for a variety of reasons, political and moral as well as religious and even the religious reasons do not necessarily involve “end times.” For many, the biblical call to support Israel and the Jewish people is found in the 12th chapter of the book of Genesis, which describes God’s covenant with Abraham and the blessings that will come to those who bless the Jewish people, or sections of the New Testament letters of the apostle Paul, which describe Judaism as the “root” of Christianity and define the proper attitude of Gentile toward Jew as…

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Wednesday, May 26th, 2010 at 12:50 PM  | David Kuner

Hezbollah on the move in Lebanon

Reports out of Lebanon say there is a real and growing threat at Israel’s northern border.

Tucked into a Haaretz story about Israeli Defense Forces training exercises is a disturbing report from a former IDF intelligence officer.

The officer says he and other Galilee farmers have seen plainclothes Hezbollah personnel traveling along the border and photographing Israeli positions. They are sometimes accompanied by individuals who do not appear to be Lebanese, as well as interpreters, who appear to be Iranian Revolutionary Guards officers.

A separate report from AFP says Hezbollah has mobilized thousands of militants in southern Lebanon in response to IDF training exercises. Israel estimates that Hezbollah has stockpiled more than 40,000 rockets, some of which could reach major Israeli population centers.

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Friday, May 21st, 2010 at 2:03 PM  | donnancys09

Israel retaliates for rocket attack

Israeli fighter jets bombed three smuggling tunnels in the Gaza strip Thursday night just hours after a Qassam rocket landed in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon. IDF spokesperson said the tunnels were dug within a kilometer of the Gaza-Israel border and were meant for the infiltration of terrorists into Israel.

Netanyahu promised a quick response to all rocket attacks early on in his premiership Thursday night’s rocket attack was the first after a ten day lull.

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Friday, May 21st, 2010 at 9:31 AM  | afarkas

Proximity talks off to a rocky start

Special Middle East Envoy George Mitchell left Israel on Thursday afternoon after a second round of proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). The indirect talks have Mitchell shuttling back and forth from PA headquarters in Ramallah to Jerusalem.

Israel believes that proximity talks should begin with tackling the issue of water. Israel has scarce water supplies and the question of how they will be distributed if a two-state solution becomes a reality is a serious question. Meanwhile the PA argued that talks should begin with the issue of final status on borders.

On Wednesday, the PA handed Mitchell numerous letters to take back to President Obama. Some of the letters are complaints against alleged provocations from the Israeli side. Some of the complaints are aimed at Netanyahu’s comments on Jerusalem Day, in which the prime minister stated that Jerusalem will remain the undivided capital of Israel.

The Israeli government, too, was fuming on Thursday after a top PA official stated that the PA seeks to implement a diplomatic intifada (uprising) against Israel. Recently, the PA attempted to block Israel’s acceptance into the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). After failing to accomplish their goal they have announced their plans to isolate Israel internationally and have its UN membership revoked.

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Friday, May 21st, 2010 at 7:08 AM  | afarkas

Canadian IDF soldier hitches a ride with Israeli PM

While visiting an IDF army base, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met a Canadian IDF soldier who had not visited his family in British Columbia in a year. Netanyahu told the soldier that he was flying to Canada the following week and asked if the young man wanted to join him. The soldier said he would love to, assuming that the prime minister was joking. But afterwards, Netanyahu’s assistants took the soldier’s information and informed him that he will be on Netanyahu’s flight the following week. The army gave the soldier a ten day leave to see his family.

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Thursday, May 20th, 2010 at 1:52 PM  | afarkas

Church leaders endorse anti-Israel initiative

Rabbi Eckstein’s message for this week:

Last December, a group of Palestinian Christian leaders issued a letter calling on Christians around the world to support the Palestinian cause. Though innocuously titled “A Message of Hope,” the document is little more than a scathing attack on Israel. In it, Israel is accused of turning Palestinian towns into “prisons,” practicing policies “in which human beings are destroyed,” subjecting Palestinians to “daily humiliation,” expelling Palestinians from Jerusalem, and ravaging Palestinian land.

In one passage, “A Message of Hope” even claims that “Some [Palestinian] political parties followed the way of armed resistance. Israel used this as a pretext to accuse the Palestinians of being terrorists…” Thus, in one broad stroke, terrorists are not only forgiven their murderous actions but portrayed as freedom fighters, while Israel’s legitimate and pressing concerns about security—based on the irrefutable fact that thousands of Israelis have been killed or injured by terrorists in the last decade alone—are dismissed out of hand.

Read on. Over at CAMERA’s website, Dexter van Zile has more on this issue as well.

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Thursday, May 20th, 2010 at 1:43 PM  | David Kuner

A holy Shavuot in Jerusalem

The celebration of the Jewish holiday of Shavuot started this year at sunset Tuesday evening and ended on Wednesday evening. The main cause for celebration on Shavuot is the giving of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai.

Shavuot is one of the three major holidays listed in the Bible on which all Jews are commanded to travel to Jerusalem to visit the Holy Temple. Currently, of course, there is no Temple in Jerusalem. Nonetheless, more than 50,000 people came to pray at the Western Wall, and to rejoice in the gifts which God has bestowed on the Jews and humanity as a whole – for giving life meaning and purpose, for giving us a system of ethics and morals and the ability to form a relationship with our Creator.

Many Jewish people have adopted a tradition of staying up all night to study the Bible on Shavuot, since the Ten Commandments were given at the break of dawn. So Tuesday night, after enjoying a festive holiday meal, I ventured out to the Old City of Jerusalem to find my place by the Western Wall where I spent the next few hours immersed in biblical texts. As I walked the streets of Jerusalem on my way to the Old City, I could hear the sweet sounds of fathers studying the Bible with their children, rabbis sharing their thoughts on biblical stories, and the harmonious melody of old men chanting verses from Scripture.

Upon reaching the Western Wall my spirits were lifted up by the scene of thousands of men and women celebrating in joy and unity at the site of the Holy Temple. Some studied in groups, others with a partner. Occasionally people would spontaneously join in a circle of song and dance.

I had walked to the Old City of Jerusalem for two reasons. One reason was to study the Bible at the Western Wall together with thousands of others. The second was to visit the burial place of King David, who is believed to have been buried on Mount Zion, which is within the Old City. The date of his passing coincides…

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Thursday, May 20th, 2010 at 8:11 AM  | afarkas

"informing, equipping and mobilizing individuals and churches to support the
State of Israel"

Rabbi's Commentary
Rejoicing in God’s Word

The festive Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah ends and begins the annual cycle of Torah readings in synagogue. It is God’s Word that offers comfort and hope to Jews and Christians alike, reminding us of His permanent presence in our constantly changing world.


Read Rabbi Eckstein's message »

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