31 May 2019

Rabbi Kahana – Yom Yerushalayim – The Day the Old City Gates Spoke

BS”D 
Yom Yerushalayim 5779
Rabbi Nachman Kahana

The Day the Old City Gates Spoke


IN HONOR OF THE 52nd YEAR OF RE-UNIFICATION OF YERUSHALAYIM – YOM YERUSHALAYIM

The following is a translation of a composition by Mr. Yitzchak Navon, in honor of Yerushalayim, written when he was serving as our 5th president.
In June 1967, the Six Day War broke out.  Israel’s soldiers fought bravely and won many victories. Soon they reached the Old City of Jerusalem. They prepared to fight for it, and to take it back from Jordan.  But they did not know through which of the seven gates to enter.  As they tried to decide what to do, each gate begged, one louder than the other, “Enter the Old City through me. Enter the Old City through me.”
Their voices reached heaven, but God and his angels could not decide which gate deserved to be the one through which the soldiers would enter.  Then the angel Michael spoke. “God in Heaven, All the gates are beautiful, and each deserves to be the one through which the soldiers will enter the Old City.  Let each gate speak and explain why it should be chosen.  Then You will decide which gate is most worthy.
God thought this was an excellent idea and asked each gate to speak for itself.  Sha’ar Yafo, the Jaffa Gate, spoke first.
Two important roads go out from me.  One leads to the city of Yafo and to the Mediterranean Sea.  The other goes to Hevron where our ancestors Avraham and Sarah, Yitzchak and Rivkah, and Ya`akov and Leah are buried in the Me’a-rat Ha-mach-pe-lah.  Near me stands the Tower of David.  I will make sure that the soldiers of Israel enter the Old City safely.
Then Sha’ar Shechem, the Damascus Gate, spoke out in a loud voice and said:
I am the biggest and most beautiful of all the gates.  All roads leading north from Jerusalem start here with me.  Let the soldiers of Israel enter the Old City through me.
Sha’ar Tzion, the Zion Gate, was the next to speak:
God in Heaven, I am named for your holy city—Tzion.  Look at me.  I am bruised and broken from all the fighting around me.  It is only right that victory should come through me.  Choose me, choose me.
Raising its voice, Sha’ar Ha-ashpot, the Dung Gate, said:
Dear God, look at me.  I am miserable and ashamed.  For centuries, Jerusalem’s garbage was dumped on me.  Now don’t misunderstand, I would rather be covered with the garbage of Jerusalem than with all the precious jewels in the world.  Every day, I try to comfort the Kotel, which is right next to me.  It is sad because Jews cannot pray there now.  Make us happy and let Israel’s soldiers enter the Old City through me.
It was then the turn of Sha’ar Ha-perachim, the Flower Gate:
It would not be right for the soldiers of Israel to enter the Old City through the dirty Dung Gate.  Let the soldiers of Israel enter through me and I will give them wreaths of flowers.  It should be through me, through me.
Next the voice of Sha’ar he-chadash, the New Gate, was heard.
I am the smallest and newest of the gates.  I am so new that I am not even counted as one of the seven gates.  I am near the Israeli side of the city, and every day I watch as Israel’s enemies fire upon her. I try to protect Israel, but I cannot.  Please let Israel’s soldiers enter through me.
Next in line to speak was Sha’ar Ha-ra-cha-mim, the Golden Gate. Its voice was muffled because it was closed in on both sides.
Master of the Universe.  For years my entrance has been sealed shut.  The other gates open and close, but large stones block me up. You promised that the Jews would return to rebuild the Beit HaMikdash through me, and that is why Israel’s enemies sealed me shut.  It is only right that the soldiers of Israel enter through me.
Only Sha’ar Ha’arayot, the Lions’ Gate, was left to speak.  God pointed to it, but it remained silent.  Finally, it began to speak in a soft voice:
God in Heaven.  From all directions I see soldiers fighting and being wounded. My heart is breaking, and I cannot bear to watch any longer.  It doesn’t matter through which gate the soldiers enter. Just make the fighting stop.
God and the angels heard these words and whispered among themselves.  Then God turned to the Lions’ Gate and said:  All the other gates are interested in their own honor. But you care more about the soldiers of Israel than about yourself. Therefore, we have decided that the soldiers of Israel will enter the Old City through you.  Let them enter through the Lions’ Gate.  Their armored cars swept through the alleyways, and they set the city free.  At the Western Wall they blew a great blast on the shofar.  The blast was heard throughout the land and everyone knew that the gates of the Old City were once again open to Jews.  A miracle had occurred.  Jerusalem was united.

Dear Friends:
Chag Samayach to the entire House of Israel on the anniversary of one of the greatest miracles to ever have been performed by our Father in Heaven – and this in our own time – the re-unification of Yerushalayim. We are now sovereign over the holy city for the first time in over 2000 years, and it will never be taken away from us – be’ezrat HaShem

Shabbat Shalom,
Nachman Kahana
Copyright © 5779/2019 Nachman Kahana

Will There Be Change? Something Must Change.

A Protest Vehicular Convoy is planned for took place on Thursday, May 30, 2019 at 6:15PM beginning in Jerusalem’s Makor Baruch neighborhood and traveling to the Knesset.

Visit YWN to view the Video for yourself.

The protest is a response to the inaction of police regarding the border policeman who viciously and mercilessly beat Yanki, a chareidi autistic male who was pushed to the pavement face down and then beaten as documented on the video, despite his cries for mercy and cries from bystanders to leave him alone as they explained his condition. Their cries fell on deaf ears. Yanki’s crime; he allegedly pushed a female policewoman. As reported by YWN-Israel, this has since been proven by video footage to be 100% false. [was this an anticipated provocation?]



On Tuesday, MK (Yahadut Hatorah) Yisrael Eichler sent a letter to Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, questioning why the border policeman documented on video beating an autistic chareidi youth mercilessly has yet to be charged.

After the incident, Deputy Health Minister contacted the parents of the victim, and explained he was not going to permit this to be pushed under the carpet and forgotten, and the persons responsible for the beating will be held accountable.

In addition, the Admor of Berdichev Shlita, Rav Aharon Baumel, was summoned to police for questioning for daring to question why not one of the bystanders intervened to stop the beating of the victim, but just stood by, perhaps yelling, but not intervening. [was this an incident in the making?]

It is pointed out the protest is not sponsored by any organization, and participants are urged to tie signs connecting to the incident to their cars.

Central Bankers Meet May 30 to Discuss Money

Confirmed: Secretive Bilderberg Meeting in Switzerland from May 30th (today)

It will feature Swiss Finance Minister Ueli Maurer, French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire, the head of Germany’s Christian Democrats, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, and Crédit-Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam among others.

According to Swiss daily Tages Anzeiger, US Secretary of *State Mike Pompeo will also be among the attendees, although he is not on the official guest list on the Bildberg website. [*JK is also slated to attend]

The Swiss paper reports that Pompeo is set to sit down with Ueli Maurer. The two are tipped to discuss the situation in Iran where Switzerland represents US interests. TheLocal

30 May 2019

A Vindictive Liberman

Netanyahu didn’t fail to create a cabinet, this was sabotaged by a vindictive Liberman; his way of “getting back at Netanyahu” (and the religious) for doing the same to him when he was DM.

Straight after the vote, the prime minister laid the blame for the unnecessary election at the door of Israeli Beitenu leader Avigdor Lieberman, accusing him of willfully impeding the formation of a right-wing government coalition by the Wednesday midnight deadline. Lieberman, he said, had cheated his voters by aligning himself with the left. The Yisrael Beitenu leader held out to the end against giving the Netanyahu lineup of 60 a majority by adding the support of his 5 member-faction.”

I wrote this earlier today, and just now browsing arutz sheva, there is this article. Look how one man could cause so much dissension and financial hardship:



Deri: I couldn't imagine Liberman would not join right-wing government
Shas chairman and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri said Thursday afternoon said he did not believe that Avigdor Liberman would refuse to join a right-wing government until it happened.

"I feel obligated as head of the second largest movement, as someone who was deeply involved in the negotiations, to explain to the citizens what happened," Deri said.at the start of a Shas faction meeting.

"Netanyahu poured out his heart after the elections. He was very hurt and told me that he could not form a government because he knew that Liberman was determined not to let him establish it," he added.

"I thought I was hearing hallucinatory things. I told him he was wrong. This is the first time I felt extorted," the Shas chairman said. "We did not know that we had such an ideological opponent. I feel attacked and hurt. One man decided to drag Israel to elections because of hatred. It pains me."

Minister Deri stressed that even after the next elections, Shas will support Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. "As we proved in the last elections, whoever votes for Shas votes for Netanyahu and Shas. We will continue with the line and support Netanyahu and he is our only candidate.” arutzsheva

Kushner and Greenblatt in Morocco

“For many years I had a dream in my heart, and today I have succeeded in fulfilling it.” With these words, Kushner opened the part of his visit in Morocco along with rabbonim, led by Mekubal HaRav David Chananya Pinto.




Kushner visited the kever of Rav Chaim Pinto ZATZAL, in the Jewish Cemetery in Casablanca, where Kushner was mispallel alongside Rav Chananya Pinto, who stands at the helm of Mosdos ‘Torah V’Chessed’, and who arrived in Morocco at the request of King Mohammed VI.




Rabbi Pinto delivered a special tefilla in honor of the king, “הנותן תשועה למלכים”. He then recited another tefilla for the success of the US President, Donald Trump.

According to a BeChadrei Chareidim report, Kushner has maintained a special personal relationship with the Pinto rabbinical family for some two decades.

Kushner said at the end of the visit to the cemetery. “I hoped and aspired to reach the tziyun of his holy grandfather of my rebbe and teacher, HaRav David Chananya Pinto.”

According a 201 article in the Forward, the Kushner family has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Rabbi Pinto.


Unable to add the video here, so visit YWN for more photos and the video in Morocco.


And Jason Dov Greenblatt sums up the trip: "Back in Israel this evening - it’s been a long time.... Grateful to have had the opportunity to daven (pray) at the Kotel (Western Wall) this evening. Lots to pray for!!”

____________________________

An interesting article about Kushner in the Forward: "A Teenage Hero"

Google Earth on Steroids — Penetrating Views

A clear message from Shamayim. An incentive for modesty. 
A Visualization into your life behind walls:

Army's 'Google Earth On Steroids' Can Look Inside Buildings

New mapping technology that is expected to transform training and simulation exercises for America's warfighters was unveiled at the IEEE Transportation Electrification Conference and Expo (ITEC) 2019 conference on May 15 in Stockholm, Sweden, reported National Defense Magazine.

Jason Knowles, director of geospatial science and technology at the University of Southern California's Institute for Creative Technologies, an Army affiliated research center, spoke at ITEC about the new terrain capture and reconstruction software that recreates complex environments including cities for simulation exercises and war planning. The institute is part of a cross-functional team working on the mapping software (called One World Terrain (OWT) project).

Knowles described the new software as "Google Earth on steroid."

Read more at zerohedge

Link to Behavioral Abnormalities via . . ,


Merck Insider Caught Deleting Peer-Reviewed Study Linking “Behavioral Abnormalities” To Gardasil
JUNE 28, 2018

healthnutnews. On January 9, 2016, a study titled “Behavioral abnormalities in young female mice following administration of aluminum adjuvants and the human papillomavirus vaccine Gardasil” was published by the journal Vaccine. The study, which had gone through Vaccine’s “extensive peer review process” consisted of dividing 76 female mice into four groups and testing the effects of … Continue reading

The study, which had gone through Vaccine’s “extensive peer review process” consisted of dividing 76 female mice into four groups and testing the effects of injecting them with the vaccine. The study’s findings were not good press for Merck’s Gardasil.

The Vaccine Reaction explains:

Each group of mice received injections of Gardasil; Gardasil plus pertussis toxin; aluminum adjuvant alone, or a “true” placebo (as opposed to an aluminum-containing placebo typically used in Gardasil pre-licensure trials).

During three- and six-month observation periods, researchers found that compared with placebo-controlled mice, the mice injected with Gardasil or aluminum adjuvant spent significantly more time floating in the forced swimming test, which was a measure of depression used for rodents. After ruling out a connection between increased floating time and locomotor dysfunction through other testing, the researchers determined that these behavioral abnormalities were “likely due to depression.”

In maze tests, aluminum-injected mice also exhibited short-term memory impairment and increased anxiety compared with the placebo-controlled mice in other rodent tests. The research team concluded that Gardasil via its aluminum adjuvant and HPV antigens may “trigger neuroinflammation and autoimmune reactions, further leading to behavioral changes.”

The study was conducted by eight scientists at Tel Aviv University in Israel, co-authored by a University of British Columbia professor and neuroscientist, and a doctor of biochemistry. When it was originally submitted, the group was told that the study was accepted. However, one month after it was published “with revisions,” the study was completely withdrawn from the international journal.

The Vaccine Reaction reports that when Vaccine first pulled the article, the publisher offered no explanation, saying the article was “temporarily removed.”

Weeks later, the page where the article used to be was updated to read:

This article has been withdrawn at the request of the Editor-in-Chief due to serious concerns regarding the scientific soundness of the article. Review by the Editor-in-Chief and evaluation by outside experts, confirmed that the methodology is seriously flawed, and the claims that the article makes are unjustified. As an international peer-reviewed journal we believe it is our duty to withdraw the article from further circulation, and to notify the community of this issue.

The Editor-in-Chief who found this “seriously flawed” methodology just so happens to be an industry insider.

Jefferey Jaxen, writing for Health Impact News points out the serious conflict of interests surrounding the journal’s Editor-in-Chief.

The Editor-in-Chief of Vaccine is Dr. Gregory Poland who personally rejected the recent Gardasil HPV study. The Mayo clinic’s website has this to say about Dr. Poland:

Dr. Poland is the chairman of a safety evaluation committee for investigational vaccine trials being conducted by Merck Research Laboratories. Dr. Poland offers consultative advice on new vaccine development to Merck & Co., Inc.

Dr. Poland has conducted four studies to date with direct affiliation to Merck.

One such study that now comes into question was the pro-HPV trial from 2005 published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings titled “Immunogenicity and reactogenicity of a novel vaccine for human papillomavirus 16: A 2-year randomized controlled clinical trial.” Dr. Poland’s 2005 pro-Gardasil study was published one year before the approval of Gardasil by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2006. In addition, Dr. Poland acted as a Safety Monitor for two other clinical trials of HPV vaccines funded by Merck Research Laboratories

In 2012 Dr. Poland and Dr. Jacobson authored The Clinician’s Guide to the Anti-Vaccinationists’ Galaxy published in the journal Human Immunology. Poland’s co-author on the article, Dr. Jacobson, is himself a member of a safety review committee for a post-licensure study funded by Merck & Co. concerning the safety of a HPV vaccine.

Regardless of one’s views on the issue of vaccines, the censoring of an independent study that shows the potential harms of a widely-distributed vaccination, by a person affiliated with the group directly responsible for said vaccination, is inherently unethical.

What does it say about the peer-review process when one well-connected industry insider can retract an entire study conducted by nearly a dozen professionals in the field?

It seems that observation and experimentation have morphed into controlling the narrative by blacklisting any conflicting information. How is it that people can see the corruption involved in the manufacturing and marketing processes of prescription drugs, but when it comes to vaccines, merely questioning the claims of safety by the very same companies, is tantamount to witchcraft?

*Article originally appeared at Natural Blaze.

29 May 2019

17 Elul: Second World War – Shoah – Israel Election (maybe)

Could the Irony of Hashem be any _______________  (you fill in the blank)
We shall find out by midnight tonite.

A Dangerous Situation


A 20-year-old’s death highlights vaccine dangers the CDC has known about for decades.

By Celeste McGovern, Ghost Ship Media

On September 3, 1992, a 20-year-old man with haemophilia A and asymptomatic HIV infection received an MMR shot to fulfill a college vaccination requirement for a second dose of measles-containing vaccine.

By July the following year, ten months after the vaccination, he had developed a dry cough and chills and was waking with night sweats. On July 30, 1993, he visited his physician and a month later he was hospitalized as he had lost weight, was feverish and struggling to breathe.

On October 6, 1993, 13 months after being vaccinated, doctors performed an open-lung biopsy on the young man. Biopsy specimens revealed measles infection in his lungs and he was diagnosed with measles pneumonia. The virus samples were stored. He was treated and stabilized and was discharged from hospital on October 29.

The following month he returned to the hospital, however, because of increased shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea and vomiting. He was treated again, his chest was drained and he was discharged on November 23.

On November 27, the young man returned to the hospital because of nausea, vomiting and dehydration.

On December 13 he became encephalitic — his brain was swelling.

On December 17, 1993, 15 months after his vaccination, he died.In 1995, for undisclosed reasons, medical researchers decided to examine the measles virus isolated from lung biopsy tissue samples taken from the young man in October 1993. They sequenced the genome of this virus and compared it to the sequence of the Moraten vaccine virus strain and reported they differed by only two nucleotides, essentially confirming the identity of the virus isolated from the lung biopsy specimen from the young man as a Moraten vaccine virus.“[The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] CDC was notified of these findings in March 1996, and supplemental sequence studies performed at CDC support the conclusion that Moraten vaccine was the source for the measles virus isolate,” the agency reported in its Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report (MMWR) in 1996.

While [the CDC] whips up terror about wild measles outbreaks, it’s hiding the dangers it knows about its engineered vaccine virus.

Vaccine-associated measles

The case study reviewed here is from the 1990s but that is all-the-more troubling since it raises a number of serious public health questions that the CDC has known about for decades and has not yet attempted to address. Worse yet, it has not yet disclosed these known dangers to the public. While it whips up terror about wild measles outbreaks, it’s hiding the dangers it knows about its engineered vaccine virus.

The CDC has known for decades that its measles vaccine virus can cause infections, that those infections can lurk silently in people for a long time and they can kill, that the virus sheds in the urine of vaccinated individuals and that it can spread. In 2011, for example, doctors released a 22-year-old theatre worker in New York City from hospital with full-blown measles to roam the streets. They thought she was only sick with vaccine-associated measles. It looks just like measles but doctors are told not to count it when it occurs in the recently vaccinated and that it can’t spread.

They were wrong. The vaccinated “Measles Mary” spread the vaccine disease to four of her contacts (two of whom were fully vaccinated) who spread the disease until it became a full-on measles outbreak. Like today that was almost certainly blamed on irresponsible “anti-vaxxers” at the time, though it all began in a vaccine needle.

Vaccinated people shed live viruses that can infect and replicate uncontrollably in immune-compromised patients.

Fake warning

Public health does warn immunocompromised patients that they might get the disease they are being vaccinated against with a live-virus vaccine. But does it tell them that the signs of infection might show up more than a year later? Or that they could die from it? No. The rest of us are told the story that we must all take vaccines to promote “herd immunity” so that people who have weak or damaged immune systems are protected. But the truth is that immune-compromised individuals are the most vulnerable to the dangers vaccinated individuals pose. Vaccinated people shed live viruses that can infect and replicate uncontrollably in immune-compromised patients. These people are the most likely to experience grave side effects of vaccination. Public health knows that many of the most susceptible to infection damage are also the most vulnerable to vaccine damage — like the case study described above or these ones here, here and here.

Who is at risk?

The truth is that CDC people know that some children will be devastatingly diseased by vaccines and they don’t know who they are beforehand. Vaccination is a gamble. How do we know a child isn’t immune-compromised before we give him a vaccine? These children are the most at risk of serious vaccine injury yet there is nothing to identify them. No one in public health is advocating screening children before vaccination to protect them. They just aren’t interested in those children who will pay the price for the “herd.”

Also, if public health has known for decades that a person can develop an infection from a supposedly attenuated virus more than a year after injection, why do all the vaccine safety studies only follow patients for weeks or even just days after vaccination?

And how common is late-onset vaccine infection? How many patients who develop infections are biopsied and how many of those biopsies are sequenced and compared to vaccine strain? Almost none, I’d bet. Although the CDC gives no reason for the research on the case study, it likely came as a result of a damage claim for the patient’s death. It could be that hundreds or thousands of infections are due to vaccine-related strains but never tested for it. If that sounds like an assumption, it is. But until there is vaccine science to study it, then it can’t be ruled out. The science is hardly settled if we don’t know answers to basic questions like how often people are infected by vaccine virus.

The truth is that the public health narrative about a benign, multi-billion dollar engineered vaccine virus stamping out a terrifying wild measles virus is unravelling. Nearly 30 years ago, a young man died and public health knew that story wasn’t true. They should have dealt with the problem in front of them. But they didn’t.

28 May 2019

Antisemitism Keeps on Spreading like the Measles

STATEN ISLAND Eruv Removed After Anti-Semitic Backlash
The controversy started when residents of Westerleigh noticed thin gray PVC pipes were put up on utility poles around the neighborhood. The eruv was put up by a group of Orthodox Jews without approval from Con Ed, Verizon, or the Transportation Department. The flames were further fueled when some residents began putting up signs considered to be anti-Semitic – “Westerleigh Strong”. That was a message to homeowners ... selling their homes to Orthodox Jews who have recently been moving into the area. City Councilman Steve Matteo says Young Israel has now taken the eruv down, but says they have submitted paperwork to have it re-attached.
HATE IN STATEN ISLAND: 
Chabad House and Nearby Yeshiva Both Defaced With Anti-Semitic Slurs

"WESTERLEIGH Improvement Society" statement saying:
“We are thankful that most of the Eruv has been removed, as it was installed without the required permission, required insurance, and did not follow standard or established details. We are curious why some portions of it remain up without the required items. We have asked Con Edison to permit the Society to review the application for a new proposed Eruv, and don’t understand why they consider this information to be private, when the proposal is to install non-communication equipment in the public right of way. We would like to call attention to the fact that we have a thriving community that we love, made up of folks of many ethnic and religious backgrounds, and welcome our new neighbors to assimilate with us and expect and insist that we all abide by the same laws and processes. So far these normal expectations have not been demonstrated.” yeshivaworldnews

NYC UBER DRIVER CALLS HASIDIC PASSENGER ‘ONE OF THOSE F****** MEASLES PEOPLE’
The woman also submitted a formal complaint via the Uber app. She told Vosizneis that she, her husband and her children are all vaccinated. [HATE has been unleashed: its not about vaccinationsJPost

ANTI-HAREDI (JEWISH) PROVOCATION: MODEL WALKS NAKED THOUGH HASIDIC WILLIAMSBURG NEIGHBORHOOD OF BROOKLYN
A model walked naked throughout the neighborhood, including posing in front of a yeshiva school bus and in front of a synagogue. JPost

FRANCE: FRENCH JEWISH CEMETERY VANDALIZED. POLICE SAY IT WASN’T ANTISEMITIC
[Oh, no, just swastikas all over the headstones!JPost
Quatzenheim cemetery in eastern France. . (photo credit: CONSISTOIRE OF THE LOWER RHINE)

Rabbi of BERLIN: Yarmulke Should Be Worn With Pride
The combating of anti-Semitism is a top priority so it is appreciated that this is being addressed by top representatives of the government,” Rabbi Teichtal wrote on Facebook. “At the same time, the KIPA is a clear symbol of Jewish identity and should be worn with PRIDE.” matzav


VIENNA: An exhibit of photos of Holocaust survivors lining a major street in downtown Vienna was vandalized for a third time.
Holes were cut into the portraits of the survivors taken by German-Italian photographer and filmmaker Luigi Toscano, days after some were defaced with swastikas and cut into with knives, Die Presse, the Vienna-based German-language daily newspaper reported. The portraits have been on display since May 7. The exhibit is scheduled to be taken down at the end of the month. arutzsheva

ARGENTINA: Swastikas painted in front of Jewish barbershop
In addition to the swastikas, a neo- Nazi pamphlet was hung near the store. The Federal Police and the Justice Department are investigating the incident. Last month, a man broke into a synagogue in Buenos Aires during Friday evening services, threatened the worshipers and shouted anti-Semitic slogans and curses. In February, nine gravestones in a Jewish cemetery in the northwestern city of San Luis were vandalized.

Anti-Semitic incidents in Argentina rose by 14 percent in 2017 over the previous year, according to a DAIA report, the most recent national statistics. Online anti-Semitic incidents made up 88 percent of the 2017 total, nearly double the 47 percent in 2014. INN

JERUSALEM: LGBT rainbow flag hung at entrance to Jerusalem Chief Rabbinate (in retaliation) “While I know that the mayor has no legal ability to prevent the parade,” wrote Rabbi Stern in a letter to Mayor Lion, “I therefore request that you at least give an order barring waving of the flags which make the city ugly.” arutzsheva

JERUSALEM: As the fire was extinguished, Arabs continued to throw firebombs at the firefighters
Fire breaks out in Jerusalem's Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood as a result of firebombs thrown by Arabs. Firefighters and rescue teams who arrived at the scene extinguished the flames and prevented the fire from approaching the homes of the Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood. As the fire was extinguished, Arabs continued to throw firebombs at the firefighters. [firefighters should be armed: since lives were in danger, the arsonists should have been eliminated while in their anti-Jewish attempts] INN

ISRAEL: Burned out and Homeless: The story of the Fire Victims
Tamar Yonah speaks with Elisheva and Yisrael Solomon from Mevo Modiin following the fire there.



Dismantle EU LAND GRABS Like Israel Dismantled YAMIT

JUST LIKE YOU DID TO 
CHOMESH and YAMIT and *HERZLICH FAMILY HOME

"European Union proudly presents: 'Ancient village' is born"



The Palestinian Authority (PA), aided by the European Union (EU), is expanding its program of land-grabbing, taking control of a strategic area in the heart of the Etzion Bloc, between Route 60 and Neve Daniel.

Over the past two years, the PA has created, out of thin air, an "historic" village – that just so happens to be located on a strategic point adjacent to the Jerusalem-Hevron highway. The name given to this new "ancient" village: Shoshkhalah.

Regavim’s Field Coordinator for Judea and Samaria, Yishai Hemo, describes the methodology: "Over the course of the last two years, activists from the Arab town Al Khader, backed by Palestinian Authority and European Union funding, occupied the ruins of two ancient 'shomerot' (watchman’s huts) – primitive stone structures used by passing shepherds or farmers as shelter from the elements during the changing seasons that dot the landscape in the Jerusalem and Sataf areas. They renovated these abandoned structures and turned them into homes – and from that point, in very short order, totally new structures have been added in the surrounding area."

The signs posted on the refurbished buildings, proudly bearing the European Union emblem, explain that the site is an ancient village - Shoshkhalah – despite the fact that aerial photos paint a completely different picture: In the last two years, more than 15 homes have been built in this "village," each connected to infrastructure that provides solar-generated electricity and water from tanks paid for by the Europeans. Read more at arutzsheva

_____________________________

* HERZLICH: JPost

27 May 2019

Excuse me, Are You Jewish?

Lubavitch has a Sixth Sense about Who is a Jew!
Every Jew is a gem, and some people have a knack for finding gems. This Chassid found a group of nuns and monks visiting the Kever of David, and zeroed in on one particular monk, asking him if he was Jewish. The rest can be seen in the photo. [text and photo from crownheightsinfo]

American Jewish Demography

Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, has been a long-term adviser on strategy issues to the boards of several major multinational corporations in Europe and North America.He is board member and former chairman of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award (2012) of the Journal for the Study of Anti-Semitism.

In his article (excerpts below) on ArutzSheva, Dr Gerstenfeld puts forth the *future of American Jewry:

"The non-Orthodox Jewish world continues to claim the affiliation of a decided majority of Americans self-identified as Jews. Yet it has morphed into a different kind of Jewish community which future seems to be in doubt. Only a tiny percentage of students educated in the Reform and Conservative institutions receive a Jewish education that compares even remotely with the level of their secular education.

“Many non-Orthodox children are by now four or five generations removed from knowing family members who had a grounding in Jewish knowledge or observance. For at least two generations, the majority of Jews outside the Orthodox community have intermarried. This has resulted in a continuing movement of the liberal denominations toward accepting as Jewish anyone who wants to be a Jew. Many have assimilated and have little or no Jewish identification.

“Consequently, it seems that Orthodoxy is on a path to dominating American Judaism and that Orthodox Jews will grow dramatically both in numbers and influence. Haredi Orthodoxy is already substantially larger than modern Orthodoxy. Haredi Orthodoxy’s growth will probably be greater than that of any other segment of the Jewish community.

“The tendency of Orthodox Jews to protect their values and interests is likely to continue to produce political influence that is disproportionate to the number of Jews in the general population. Orthodox Jews have the financial resources, the sophistication and the motivation to play a substantial role in issues that are of genuine interest to them. My guess is that the pro-Israel lobby in America, though it will be Orthodox-dominated, will continue to be very effective.”

__________________________

* that is, if antisemitism does not up-end this conjecture.

I would like to read his take on the current rise in antisemitism.

What is the Basis for the Establishment of the Temple? | Rav Shmuel Eliyahu Daily Halakhah


Sounds like good news!




Picture Worth a Thousand Words

New Satellite Photos Reveal "Iran's Land Bridge" Linking Tehran To The Mediterranean


zerohedge article says much, but the Picture is worth a thousand words!

26 May 2019

UPDATE Police Use Excessive Force . . . VIDEO again and again and again

Police call Admor from Berdichev to explain his words.The rebbe was referring to the shocking vicious beating by police of an autistic teen, who was accused of pushing a female plainclothes policewoman, which has since been proven by video footage to be 100% false. . 

Police still do not understand what they did! Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman spoke with the parents of the victim, telling them that he will not permit this incident to be forgotten and he promised them the responsible persons will face the full weight of the law, condemning the unnecessary violence used against the unarmed autistic youth by border police.

#####
The Israeli Police Department needs a complete overhaul, with guidelines set in place that distinguishes between palestinian incitement (via phone to the police against ’settlers’ ) [a phrase I do not like to use], terrorist actions, and the much milder "skirmishes" of the young Jewish youth (whether innocent or in retaliation to palestinian incitement).

When the Police act in a forceful, antagonistic, and brutal manner BEFORE QUESTIONING, this only leads to war-like behavior:  Questioning, viewing ID information, and deciding a proper response to an incident. Just because someone objects to police behavior when questioning, does not give permission to the police to brutalize the person. When that occurs, an innocent person is obligated to defend himmself, which only leads to more brutality in excessive use of force from the police. 

The Police need to be trained in restraint, and how to investigate claims, especially those of Jewish youth, otherwise their crass behavior resembles an animalistic attack without any intelligent discernment. [crass: stupid, insensitive, blundering, dense, thick, vacuous, mindless, witless, doltish, oafish, boorish, asinine, coarse, gross].

A perfect example of this is the unnecessary beating up of an autistic youth who obviously was confused and scared. Where was their discernment? How stupid the police's crass behavior!  *See Father’s interview article below.

There most certainly is a difference between the palestinian behavior and the Jewish youth of our Land. The police department must re-evaluate their approach to incidents. Maybe an IQ test, and complete behavioural background check, should be administered before hiring



'Clean house over police's excessive use of force'
Town of Yitzhar in Samaria denies police report claiming masked Jewish men attacked policemen with stones. 'Police exerted harsh violence.’
[could it be that arabs disguised as masked jews instigated a ruckus?]

The Samaria community of Yitzhar on Saturday night rejected a police report claiming that dozens of masked men attacked with stones and other items policemen who arrived to break up alleged clashes between residents of the community and Palestinian Arabs.

According to the Yitzhar town council, "During Shabbat, residents went out for a walk near Yitzhar. At the end of the walk, which ended without special incident, in contrast to the police announcement which asserted that clashes between Arabs and Jews took place, the residents headed back to the community.”

“During a stop to rest near the community, a Border Police force arrived and demanded that they evacuate the area and, without any justification, exerted harsh violence against them."

The town added, "Amid the inflamed feelings, an incident of shouts and verbal clashing developed. Instead of admitting their mistake, the police used disproportionate force on the residents, and thus inflamed the atmosphere.” One resident was injured in three places on his head, was evacuated for medical treatment.

I didn’t want to post a video, but because of some responses… Notice the amount of police and the interactions:



'Yanki is dejected, hurt and humiliated'
 'We are shocked.’ 
"What brought Yanki into a situation where he was cuffed and beaten - he did not do anything.”"

Baruch Rosenberg, the father of Yanki Rosenberg, the mentally disabled haredi youth who was arrested through use of excessive force on Wednesday in the Makor Baruch neighborhood of Jerusalem, described the situation in which his son now finds himself.

"Yanki is another person. He is dejected, hurt and humiliated. It's unbelievable, we know him as a happy person who deals with things. He told me, 'Dad, I got the blow of my life'," the father told Ha’olam Haboker on Channel 13.

"We already know that there are a few videos. In the first few days we couldn’t bring ourselves to see them," Rosenberg continued. "Yesterday I made a decision that I have to see. Since we do not have this media, I do not have access to it, so I didn’t see it yet. I am informed by people who saw it - and we are shocked."

"My second son told me, 'Dad, I know Yanki, he's a good soul and he really did not do anything - not just because I know him, but because you can see.' The video also shows that Yanki is a special child from his conduct. People around yelled, ‘Leave him alone, he's a special boy,’ Yanki also shouted, ‘I'm special’ - he uses that when he's in distress, even though he does not like it,” the father added.

arutzsheva

Just a Thought

Just a thought. After the Yeshiva education scare in the NY metro area was stopped just prior to Pesach, not much has been written. However, if one notices, there has been a tremendous increase in Antisemitic attacks on Jews worldwide. If the education scare, the shechita scare, and the bris milah scare did not motivate Jews that are able, to emmigrate from their non-Jewisn lands, and immigrate to the Land upon which the eyes of the A-lmighty are constantly upon it, our yerusha from Mt Sinai, then the uptick in antisemitism intensifies.

Unfortunately I doubt it will get under control, the news reports are dreadful. It’s so sad to read what’s happening. And it’s very difficult for those within those areas under attack. They do not know what to do. And some do not have the finances to up and depart. The political and communal leaders need a drastic change of vision and understanding of what is taking place worldwide. They need to promote a change of location for their communities. Appeasement and financial incentives toward the governing bodies will not prevent the future. The local secutity forces will not be able to protect everyone. Each head of family must create a plan of action to protect their families. The same community heads must create a plan of action for the elderly and those physically not able to do this for themselves.

Funds should be raised to facilitate these procedures. Monies can be raised for all sorts of endeavors; to save a life is the highest, more so for many lives. Don’t wait for El Al to land for the rescue.

MUST LISTEN TO THIS: Total Bankruptcy Of Our Life And Society

Rego Park Anti-Semitism
It started years before Kristallnacht
One cannot rely on the police to help
Even with a President, the best friend of Israel
But those below him, in the government, are from the Obama administration



This shiur is from a month or so ago but to be published while he is not in the states.

24 May 2019

UPDATED Insanity! What Are You Doing to an Autistic Teenager?

POLICE: We didn’t know he was autistic!¥^§??
[but it was ok to beat up a Haredi youth? Details should be obtained before ruffing up someone; like, name, I’d number, and, statement of what happened. Rules of engagement need to be adjusted/revised!]
Police accused of using excessive force on ultra-Orthodox teen with autism


To TOI staff: why are you calling him “ultra-orthodox”??
Are you smearing him? He’s just plain G-d fearing! 
More than the police who are acting like goons here!

This should be the headline: 
 Crazed Officers Beat Up Autistic Teen!

The Israel Police put out a statement Thursday morning defending officers’ conduct after footage emerged of policemen using force against an ultra-Orthodox teenager with autism the previous day.

The incident began when police came to the Mekor Baruch neighborhood of Jerusalem to prevent a group of youths from starting a bonfire celebrating the Jewish festival of Lag B’Omer in a location deemed dangerous, Hebrew-language media reported.

In the footage, officers can be seen restraining the boy with force on the sidewalk, with his face bloodied. They then get him on his feet and pull him toward a police vehicle while protesters explain that he “suffers from problems” and try to get to him, but more policemen and policewomen block their way.

The teenager — who learns at Seeach Sod, a Haredi special education school — can be seen, clearly in distress and pain, repeatedly shouting:

“Mommy, I want to go home” 
“Help, save me.”

He was released later, but journalists and politicians lambasted police over the incident, calling for the officers involved to be punished or discharged.

“It is heartbreaking to think about this special teenager and what he has gone through,” said MK Meir Porush of the Haredi party United Torah Judaism. “Watching footage of the grave violence he suffered is intolerable and the hate and inhumanity displayed by the officers is impossible to understand.”

Porush called on Acting Police Chief Motti Cohen and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan to immediately expel the officers.

Lawmakers from the left-wing Meretz party also called on authorities to thoroughly investigate the incident.

Source: timesofisrael

______________

That’s not the only insanity:

Defense Portfolio returns to MK Liberman

It appears Netanyahu is going to dump some of the members of his coalition. Don’t think this will go over well with many of the others. I wonder who they might be?

Tremble at the Tochecha . . . and Seven Times Seven


SEVEN TIMES SEVEN
By Roy S. Neuberger

This week, we tremble at the Tochecha

“For the sin of … cessation [of the observance of] shmittah and yovel, exile comes to the world,” (Shabbos 33a) “then the land will be appeased for its Sabbaticals during all the years of its desolation….” (Vayikra 26:34) In the fearsome words of our Parsha, “I shall punish you … seven ways for your sins.” (ibid 26:18)

Several weeks ago, Rabbi Yaakov Feitman wrote in the Yated about Sefiras Ha’omer. In essence, Sefira is a long chol ha moed between Pesach and Shavuos. (Ramban on Vayikra 23:36.) Shavuoscompletes the process which began on Pesach. Sefira is the forty-nine step ladder we climb to get there.

Why forty nine? 

The teshuva must be seven times seven. This number comes up constantly: at negative forty-nine we were almost lost in Mitzraim. At positive forty-nine we arrive at Har Sinai!

Everything, my friends, starts with the Seventh Day, Shabbos. Hashem built the world upon Shabbos“last in deed, first in thought.” (Lecha Dodi) Shabbos frees us. “Dror Yikra … [Hashem] proclaims freedom!” The same word is used regarding Yovel: “You shall proclaim ‘dror b’Aretz,’ freedom throughout the land.” (Vayikra 25:10)

When I was living without Torah, people called that “freedom.” We thought we were free because we did whatever we wanted. We lived on the carousel: round and round it goes. Then, one day, the music stops; the ride is over; you get off the horse, and – guess what! – you are exactly where you started! Your entire life was a race to get nowhere!

The Torah, lehavdil, is not a circle. We are going somewhere! We are coming constantly closer to theRibono shel Olam. Each week ends with the Day we spend with Hashem! There are six directions in this world – east, south, west, north, up and down, like waving the lulav – but on the Seventh Day we enter a new existence. 

Suddenly, we are free: free of fear … free of troubles … free to connect with the Source of Life!

All success in life has to do with the number “seven,” which takes us beyond gashmius. And then there is an even higher madreiga: seven times seven!

Every Shabbos ends with havdalla, but imagine not having to make havdalla, living continuously on the level of Shabbos! Thus, at Har Sinai, on the fiftieth day, we entered a new level of existence. When you reach the fiftieth madreiga, you are a different person. Har Sinai is the antidote to the Tochecha;the Fiftieth Day heals us. “Shelo asani oved… Blessed are You, Hashem, that I am not a slave!”

Every moment we have a choice: do I go “acharei levavchem v’acharei ainaichem … after my heart and my eyes” (Bamidbar 15:39or do I follow Moshe Rabbeinu? At Har Sinai we meet the Ribono shel Olam.  “Dror yikra … proclaim freedom! … Let your soul know Torah and it will be a crown on your head!” May we all soon wear this crown!

*          *          *          *
Roy Neuberger, author and public speaker, can be reached at roy@2020vision.co.il.

© Copyright 2019 by Roy S. Neuberger

Fires Ranging Across Eretz Yisrael – “If you will not listen to Me”!

When looking at this photo of the burnt cars, I am reminded of Santa Rosa, California, and the unspeakable heat from fires that burnt glass and melted metal. I hope there are no similarities.



Photo from arutz sheva.



Photo from timesofisrael



Photo of fire near Romema, Jerusalem, from timesofisrael article.

PLEASE READ THIS. AMAZING. Rabbi Winston – Parashas Bechukosai “if you will not listen to Me”!

Parashas Bechukosai

However, if you will not listen to Me, and do all of these commandments… (Vayikra 26:14)

NUMBERS ARE JUST numbers, except when tattooed on the arm of an old Jew. The sleeves of his designer shirt were rolled up, just enough to reveal most of the number. He was faded, but the numbers, not so much. 
Life around us was bustling as we sat outside at a little table at a small cafe of his choosing. People came and went in all directions, completely oblivious to the past, to HIS past. But one look at those numbers on his withered arm had a reverse effect on me. They seemed to make everything ELSE disappear and seem so TRIVIAL.
It had taken me months to get Mr. Bernstein to meet with me. I kept calling and he kept saying “No.” Then he stopped taking my phone calls, so I stopped making them. Imagine the surprise when I got a call one day asking ME to meet him. What had changed his mind?
Though he had said he did not want anything, I took the liberty of ordering two coffees and danishes. Worse come to worst, I would take them home for my kids. But his frail body looked so weak, and his eyes seemed so empty that I felt compelled to fill the table to balance the scene. 
It was like a shiva call at first. I didn’t know how to start, so I just waited for him. He looked at the danishes for a couple of moments, and then to my further surprise, he picked one up. Then he slowly maneuvered his hand to his shirt pocket, and painstakingly pulled some material out. I had NO idea at first what it was, but as he took it out, it opened up into one of those cheap shul yarmulkes.
“That’s strange,” I thought to myself. “He doesn’t seem religious…”
After making sure the kippah was resting securely on his head, he turned his attention back to the danish in his other hand. Looking at it, he made a blessing, slowly, deliberately, as if he really meant it, and then took a bite.
He chewed a small piece of danish for what seemed like a very long time. But as he did, I reminded myself of who he was and where he had come from. I then acted like nothing else mattered for the rest of the day, and it was only late morning.
“You still make blessings?” I asked him.
He looked up at me with a skewered face, which then softened. It seemed as if he did not understand my question at first, and then did.
“Mr. Rosenthal, right?” he asked.
“Call me Jim…” I told him.
“Okay. Jim,” he said, putting his small bitten danish back on its plate. “They call us ‘holy disbelievers’…because of what we went through…because of the horrors we had to endure. Our faith in God was shaken to its core…friends of mine who came from the most religious families gave it all up because of what happened to them…to their families…”
He paused, and his eyes teared. Had his body not been so dried, especially from all the crying he had to do during the worst of it, I imagine he would have poured tears. Instead, he just looked up, and out, where I did not know.
“The holy part,” he said once he rejoined me, “was because we were excused for our doubts because of all we had…”
He could not finish his sentence and just looked down. I wanted to cry.
We had lost family in the Shoah as well, but no one I had been familiar with. The Holocaust had not really touched my family. Some names had been mentioned over the years, and I could see the sadness in my parents’ faces. But it was nothing that really caught my attention or made me think.
It wasn’t until High School that it caught my interest. It was a gentile school, and the Holocaust only got a brief mention during one history class. When I asked, in class, how the brutal death of 6,000,000 Jews could be discussed so briefly, I was told that being a very sensitive and controversial topic, the curriculum demanded that only the smallest amount of time be devoted to it.
I understood that on one level. But something inside me also felt as if a grave injustice was being committed, and over time, it got to me. I wasn’t even sure why I was SO affected, but eventually, I found myself devoting more and more time to increasing Holocaust awareness. It became my life’s work, and it brought me to people like Mr. Bernstein, through whom I had developed my OWN Holocaust sensitivity.
“Are you back?” he asked me. 
At first, I didn’t know what he meant, then I realized that I had been the one to drift off this time. In a strange way, it made us more alike, and I could see it in his somewhat hollow eyes.
“Yes, I’m back.”
“Good,” he said. “If both of us drift off, we’ll be here forever and never say anything.”
I smiled and was delighted that someone like that could still make jokes…
“Why did you change your mind and call me?” I asked, already moving on from the previous discussion.
“You asked me why I still make a brochah…meaning after ALL God DID to me…”
That was what I meant, but it sounded rather coarse being fed back to me by him.
“I still believe in God,” he said, choking up as he did. That wasn’t an easy statement for him to make.
“I still believe He takes care of everyone and feeds us,” he continued. “I still have to ask His permission to eat, and thank him for what I have…”
He stopped to think, and then said. “I don’t know why He did all that to us…or at least allowed it to happen…and maybe one day I will…or maybe one day I won’t…but I STILL believe in Him.” His voice trailed off.
He slowly took another bite of his danish, then making a blessing over his coffee, he sipped with a sound, a little loudly. He was old, and tortured, and was allowed to make as much noise as he needed to.
A few minutes passed and I began to wonder if I would ever know the reason for our meeting. But it didn’t really matter. I had learned over the years that just being in the presence of such people was a special thing, and I had learned to cherish every moment of every opportunity. Even disbelievers seemed to have a special relationship to God that others who had not gone through the camps could EVER have.
“I decided to meet with you,” he finally said, “because I am 95 years old, and if I don’t come clean NOW, when will I?”
“Okay,” I thought, amused by his rather “hip” language. “Come clean? Of what? It was the world who owed HIM a living, not the other way around. What could he have possibly done ‘wrong,’ that his conscience had been looking for a way out?”
“Come clean?” I asked him. “What could a nice, elderly, respectable gentleman like you, who had been forced to endure the unimaginable possibly have to come clean of?
My question didn’t seem to make it any easier for him. Instead, he looked away, off in the distance…no…he was looking back in time, and his eyes watered as he did. I just waited.
“I…was…20…years…old,” he began, struggling to pull each word out from the depths of the darkest nightmares. “I had already been in the camp for a year and a half. Bergen Belsen…”
I watched his old and worn face change shapes various times as he spoke, and I realized that he wasn’t just recounting a terrible period of his life. He was reliving it. Born 25 years AFTER the war ended, it was bravery I did not know.
“Tommy…” he started to say, and it threw me off. I just assumed he was talking about someone Jewish, and which Jewish boy at that time had the name “Tommy”?
“His name was Tommy?”
He stopped in his tracks, and looked at me, scrutinized me. Then he said, “No. His name was not Tommy. It was Yankele. He was born Yankele Berdolovitz. But when those animals MURDERED his ENTIRE family in front of his eyes…and he saw the other horrors of the world around him…he stopped calling himself ‘Yankele’. He was angry at God, VERY angry at God…we ALL were…so he took a gentile name…”
I nodded slowly to indicate that I understood, not just what he was saying now, but what it was that made a good Jewish boy do such an unJewish thing. Holy disbelievers…
“Tommy and I were around the same age,” he continued, “and we became friends. Sometimes we just helped each other cope physically, but a lot of the time we argued…”
“Argued?” I ask. Who had strength in the camps to argue?
“Yes, argued…mostly about whether or not God existed. He said that no God could ever let this horror happen to His people. He said that if God actually existed, and He COULD let such torturous genocide happen, then he wanted no part of Him…”
“Hmm,” I said sympathetically, trying to put myself in “Tommy’s” frame of mind. I couldn’t even come CLOSE, and I criticized myself for even trying. The Holocaust belonged to another realm of consciousness into which I had never entered, and hopefully, never will have to. 
“I told him,” he continued, “that everything we were going through was in the Torah, first in Parashas Bechukosai, and then later in Ki Savo. Year after year we had LEARNED about the curses for straying from God and Torah. We didn’t listen. We didn’t take them seriously. Now we were LIVING them.”
“He didn’t agree. He said that devout Jews, like his parents and the rest of his family, were ruthlessly killed. They tried so hard, in spite of all the obstacles, to KEEP the Torah. Yet, he said, God murdered them…in cold blood…cruelly… before his eyes….”
“So I told him, we don’t know God that well, or how He works. I told him the story about Rebi Akiva and how the great Moshe Rabbeinu, and even the angels had problems with it…”
I knew the story. I had read it in a book about the Holocaust. The author made a similar point, or at least TRIED to. It seemed more like apologetics, and the book left me feeling as if we’re better off saying, “We don’t KNOW why God does what He does, and why the Holocaust was SO…SO…”
“Horrifying,” he said to me, and for a moment I thought he had read my mind and finished my sentence. He was actually starting his own.
“It was just horrifying to watch a nice Jewish boy who had believed in God, and who would have probably stayed religious all of his life, had it not been for…”
The word did not leave his mouth. It got caught in his throat, so I spared him the trouble.
“He was like so many,” I said. “and I’m sure he has a special place by God.”
He forced a slight smile.
“Only God can judge a person. Only God knows what a person is capable of. He may have given up on God, but I’m sure God never gave up on him…”
“I’d like to think so,” he told me. 
Then his face became VERY serious. 
“He died in a gas chamber,” he intoned. “I watched him go in…I saw him give me one last smile before he did…a smile that said, ‘I told you so!’…and then he was gone…forever…”
He paused and looked out into the distance again…the distant past…perhaps back at his friend re-walking into the gas chamber. I just looked down, and gave him all the time he needed to continue.
“That’s when I looked up…” he said.
Up? To Heaven? 
“That’s when I noticed it,” he continued, now looking me dead in the eyes. “Those barbarians weren’t happy just killing us off,” he said, pent up anger visible in even HIS old eyes. “They had to mock us too! They had taken the paroches off some Aharon HaKodesh and placed it over the door of the chamber. I could see the writing on it…it said…‘This is the gate of God, through which the righteous go’.”
His face reddened, and I actually worried that he might have a heart attack. Instead, he WENT on the attack, and I now worried that I would have the heart attack!
“I became enraged!” he said, enraged. “I was so angry that part of me just wanted to attack every Nazi I could, and maim or kill them! I didn’t care if I died trying. I just wanted to avenge my people…my friend.”
“But I didn’t,” he said, feeling what seemed like some shame. “I barely had the strength to walk! Instead, I just fell to my knees as the last of the ‘selected’ entered the death chambers, and the executioners locked the door. Soon I would be called on to…”
It was too difficult for him to finish the thought, and I could figure out why. I was becoming more uneasy by the moment, as if I was being dragged through the nightmare with him
“All I could do was cry. Well, at least I tried. There wasn’t enough liquid in my body to make tears…but I went through the motions. And as I did, I found myself getting weaker…and weaker… Not just physically, but mentally. My resistance had been worn down, partly because my friend was gone, and there was no one left to challenge me…except me.”
“That’s when the doubt began to creep in…” he said, reflecting. “No not creep in, because I realized later that it had ALWAYS been there. It just began to surface at that time.”
“I tried to fight it at first,” he said, agitated, “but it kept coming back each day…each HOPELESS day. I had run out of answers…and the doubt began to fill the void. Maybe Tommy had more of an impact on me than I had thought…”
He reflected some more, and then continued.
“The turning point, if you can call it that…” he said mournfully, “was the day I saw a couple of nine-year-olds get beaten to death. They had stolen a small piece of bread…and those butchers…”
He talked with clenched teeth, still feeling the anger…
“…caught them, and beat them…and beat them…and beat them…in plain sight…LONG past their last breaths of a miserable life had left them…”
“That is when,” he said, a sense of guilt visible, “I finally turned my back on Him…”
“Him…God?” I knew that is what he meant, but I just wanted to confirm it.
“Yes.”
“I can understand why,” I told him, so he wouldn’t feel I was judging him at all. I gave him some time to regain some strength. I felt bad that I had forced him to drain himself, but he had called me to meet. It seems he had wanted this, though I still was not sure why.
“Is this what you wanted to share with me?” I asked, softly, understandingly. 
“Partially,” he answered. “It’s the other part that I want you to know…to share…”
“And what is that?”
He summoned more strength, as if preparing himself to finish a mission, an IMPORTANT mission.
“Nine months after Tommy’s death…Yankele’s death…”
I assumed that he had gone back to Tommy’s original name as part of his OWN healing, and didn’t ask. In fact, I decided not to interrupt him again.
“…we were liberated. The war ended, and I went the route of most survivors…Displaced Persons camps…fruitless search for surviving relatives…eventually ending up in New York. I had an uncle there, and he took me in. He was a good man…doing everything he could to make me feel like one of his own. But sometimes that only made it worse, not better.”
“Then came the nightmares…the constant nightmares…for years after…thousands of miles away, but still in my memory like it all just happened yesterday.”
“How many times I must have watched Yankele walk through that door to death…over and over again… How many times I woke up shivering, crying, distraught for hours…”
I found myself crying for him, on the inside and on the outside. I had an intense desire to hug him, stranger as he was to me. It was not easy to maintain my OWN composure. I just kept thinking how lucky I was to have been born AFTER it all had occurred, that I had been spared…
“As time went on, the nightmares became less frequent,” he explained, “but they never fully went away. Eventually I married, and we had our own children. But I found myself always worried that someone would come along and tear them away from me, as I, and so many others, had been torn away from our families…It was so hard to enjoy anything again!”
“I can’t imagine,” I told him. 
“No, you can’t,” he said. “And you should never HAVE to! No one should EVER have to go through any of that again.”
“Amen…” I found myself saying.
“Anyhow,” he continued, “about 15 years ago, something happened to change my life…again.”
“And what was that?”
“I dreamed of Yankele…”
“A DREAM, or a NIGHTMARE?”
“A dream,” he said. “It was really strange, because this time Yankele actually spoke to me…” He seemed to catch himself and explain, “Well, at least he spoke to me in the DREAM…I’m not saying he actually CAME to me in the dream and spoke to me…and I don’t know if the dream had any REAL significance…”
“What did he say…” I asked, and then correcting myself, I added, “in the DREAM, of course.”
He paused for a good long moment, and it looked as if he was unsure whether he should tell me what I wanted to know. But he had to now.
“He told me that it was God Who had arranged for the paroches to be put over the door to the gas chamber. The Nazis had done it to make fun of the Jews, but God had arranged it for another reason. It was to tell all the Jews who passed through it that God considered each of them like a Sefer Torah being returned to the Aron HaKodesh. He told me that there was a Divine reason for everything that happened…that he had been wrong about God…that I had been RIGHT about Him…but he could not say more at that time. He begged me…literally pleaded with me…to do teshuvah while I was still alive…”
I waited for more, and when it didn’t come, I asked, “Well?”
“Well?” he repeated, sitting back and taking a deep breath. “I was an 80-year old man at the time…God had not been a part of my life for 60 years, as hard as my family tried to change that. Was I supposed to all of a sudden pick up where I had left off back in that death camp?”
I didn’t answer the question, not to him and not to myself. I didn’t even know what it was. 
“I never saw Yankele again, not in a dream and not in a nightmare. But the dream would not fade, and it became increasingly annoying until…
“Until?” my expression said.
“…until I found an old Chumash on a bookshelf that I hadn’t even known was there. Apparently, it was a Bar Mitzvah present for one of my grandsons, and he had left it in our home.”
“I wanted to put it back on the shelf, or just get rid of it…but couldn’t. For reasons I could not explain, I wound up on the sofa and just stared at it for what must have been about 20 minutes…”
I could guess what was coming next, but I wanted to hear it from him.
“I don’t know why,” he said, “to this very day I cannot figure out what made me do it, but I randomly opened it…to”
“No,” I thought to myself. “Not to…”
“Parashas Bechukosai…”
He choked up. I choked up.
“I started to cry,” he said. “A little at first, and then more, and then more, and then…I fell onto the floor and rolled myself up like a baby…and cried like one too. I cried for my father, and for my mother, and my three sisters and two brothers…I cried for my neighbors and my town…and for ANYONE and EVERYONE I could think of…”
“Wow…” was all I could say, holding back my own tears. “I am NOT going to cry like a baby in public!” I told myself, but wasn’t sure of my resolve.
“And then I cried…for…God,” he said almost too softly to hear.
“You cried for God?” I was surprised.
“Yes. I even found myself crying for God…ESPECIALLY for God.”
“Why?”
“I also did not know at first,” he said. “But then I realized…as a father…that as much as we hurt from what happened, God hurt more.”
I looked at him in the eyes, requesting additional explanation.
“My father, may his soul rest in peace, always told me, since I was a little boy, that God was our FATHER. A father LOVES his children and will do anything for them, especially if it is for their own good. And sometimes that means,” my father taught me, “being hard on them…for their own good.”
“But, my father told me, I had to always know that, as angry and hurtful as a father may seem to be, he really loves his children, and it hurts him even more to have to punish them, and make them sad…”
He looked down and considered his own words, clearly believing them. Then he slowly reached for his pocket, a different pocket this time, and he pulled out a different yarmulke, a black felt one.
“So, Jim…” he said, putting the kippah on his head.
“Ya’akov,” I said. I felt compelled, after all that, to use my Hebrew name too.
“Okay, Ya’akov. Well, Ya’akov,” he began again, “I called you to meet me because this is the day I finally told my story…it is my moment of reconciliation. I could not put on a yarmulke again until I did. It just didn’t feel right. I still have lots of questions to ask God, but I now accept that answers might not come until much later on. But I am very old now, and before I go and meet my Father in Heaven, I figure I ought to dress ‘appropriately’…”
I smiled. This man impressed me. For so many reasons, he impressed me.
The conversation turned to lighter topics for the last 15 minutes. Not only did he give me permission to publish our interview, but he insisted on it. He called it a way to make amends for his mistakes of the past. 
As we got up to leave, I gave him a hug. I rarely ever did that to a “stranger,” even to friends. I told him that he was an exception, that he had EARNED it. He seemed to appreciate that.
I promised to call him soon, but never got the chance. He died three weeks later, and I made a point of attending his funeral. It was disappointingly small, at least as far as I was concerned. But, he had outlived most of his friends and family, and was a survivor through-and-through.
As I drove away, I went through our time together in my mind. All of it was memorable, but the most memorable part of all was what he said, just before he turned away to go. He told me, “Mr. Rosenthal, if you remember anything at all in life, remember this: God loves you, always, no matter what it seems like to you.”
I smiled and felt warm all over. Apparently, I had needed to hear that too.
“I now know that,” I told him, “after seeing how much He loves YOU.”
He smiled so deeply I melted. Then we both went our separate ways, him to God apparently, and me to find my way to Him.