Category Archives: Judaism

Game Of Death Enters Extra Innings!

Let me make clear the views of this blog concerning war in Gaza.

1. No nation can allow rockets from any source to land on its soil. That is a given.

2. No nation or group can place the lives of civilians at risk if it can in any way be avoided.

We begin with the above premises. Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu raises a key issue when saying, “Following Hamas’ incessant rocket fire ..which was agreed upon for the welfare of the civilian population of Gaza, the IDF will now resume its aerial, naval and ground activities in the Gaza Strip.” The Israel prime minister is raising a key point, but he also fails to raise other key points.

1. Israel shells and missiles ARE killing the innocent. Which, if any, steps can be taken to reduce this situation?

2. Are there other political steps which can be taken that would lessen the influence of Hamas among Palestinians?

I am not a military expert, but certainly steps could be taken to reduce(note, I say, “reduce,” not “end.”) the killing of civilians. Netanyahu has a responsibility to those civilians just as he has a responsibility for his fighting men. Throughout the history of this human race, the innocent have always died in wars. All one can do is REDUCE the numbers of innocent people who die.

Political: This is my main complaint about Prime Minister Netanyahu. His failure to engage in meaningful negotiations with President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority set the stage for growth of power in Gaza of Hamas.(Actually, there is now considerable evidence if an honest election was held in Gaza, Hamas would lose it). So, what can Prime Minister Netanyahu do at this moment?

1. Announce a freeze on any construction of new settlements on the West Bank.

2. Announce that Israel recognizes creation of a Palestinian nation.

3. Urge creation of a Middle Eastern “Marshall Plan” funded by the regions’ oil states and Israel which would be used to improve living standards within Palestine, Egypt and Syria.

4. Announce that eastern Jerusalem could become the capital of Palestine.

5. Agree to discussions concerning the ongoing refugee problem. Israel has a legitimate right to note over 700,000 Jewish refugees had to flee Arab nations. There are both a Palestinian refugee issue and a Jewish refugee issue. Thus, there is a basis for compromise.

NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH. That is the best way to reduce power of Hamas!

Muslims Kill Muslims, Jews Kill Muslims, Who Doesn’t?

Future generations will look back on 2014 with wonder. Throughout Africa and the Middle East thousands of Muslims are engaged in the process of murdering other Muslims while leadership of Muslim societies remains remarkably silent about this carnage. In Nigeria, the nut case Boko Haram continues to sweep into Muslim villages, and either murder every Muslim in sight or they kill the men and gather up women to be used as sex slaves. Has anyone seen a single outburst in any Muslim nation about this murder of Muslims? Oh, in Pakistan a mob went wild and murdered three Muslims because they were not the right kind of Muslim. Just about every day in Iraq, hundreds are shot to death by fellow Muslims, but silence reigns from al-Ahram university. Where are Muslim clerics like Christian Martin Luther King who risked his life in order to aid fellow black Christians? Syria is a monstrosity of murder by Muslims against Muslims and no leader in any Muslim society rises to seek the end of this slaughter of Muslims. According to Muslim columnist, Harron Siddiqui: “Muslims are being killed by fellow Muslims in Syria, Iraq, Pakistan and Nigeria in far greater numbers(than those in Gaza). Muslim blood is cheap.

Perhaps, the lack of an outraged response from Muslim leaders throughout the world enables the Israel government to continue its policy of wiping out Hamas. Ironically, killing 1500 Muslims in Gaza is much fewer than have been killed in Iraq or Syria on any week of the year. I guess Mr. Siddiqui is right-Muslim blood is cheap. If this carnage is to end, it should begin with organization of Muslim clerics who would march into Syria or Iraq or into Gaza and demand a ceasefire in the killing of Muslims. If they do not take action, then who will?

So, What Comes Later?

I thoroughly agree with the concept that a nation has the right to defend its territorial integrity. I agree that a nation has the right to wipe out any groups seeking to cause it harm. I agree that Israel has the right to make certain no bombs are headed for its people. Frankly, any nation in the world would take action to halt such violence against its territory. The government of Israel made clear “when a ceasefire proposal that answers Israel’s important needs is laid on the table, it will be considered.” Even as he spoke Israel tanks were blasting away at civilians seeking refuge in a UN school. Let me examine the Israel statement.

1. What are Israel’s “needs?”

2. What does “consider” mean?

3. What comes after the conclusion of the war in Gaza?

It is quite clear that Israel’s “needs” entail an end to bombs entering its nation. Hopefully, “consider” means address ALL issues linked to the fighting in Gaza. To simply respond to the need for an end of bombs is not enough because ceasing at that point any meaningful discussions does not address the issue of “what comes after conclusion of the war in Gaza?” Unless this issue is addressed in a “meaningful manner” a few years from now there will be more bombs and within a year there will be suicide bombers blasting away in Israel. Does anyone in the Israel government actually believe that this war has not created a new generation of suicide bombers! They are now teens and within a few years they will be ready and willing to die for Allah by killing Jews.

So, what must be done–NOW!

1. An end to further West Bank settlements.

2. Consolidation of all West Bank settlements into an area of the West Bank not to exceed 5% of the land.

3. Recognition of the new state of Palestine.

4. The right of Palestinians to have its capital in east Jerusalem.

5. Creation of a new “Marshall Plan” for the region whose aim is stimulating the economies of Palestine, Egypt and Jordan, along with that of Israel.

Get youth into meaningful education and jobs if one seeks to avoid suicide bombers!

Confederacy Still Alive-Only In Europe

Modern America retains those who believe fervently in the idea of a separate Confederate nation. During the year, at some point or another, they hold celebrations about their beloved Confederacy and pretend they are in a battle. These mock battles invariably result in victory for the forces of slavery. Ironically, many separatist and neo-Nazi groups in Europe have taken up the star and bar flag of the Confederacy as these people fight for the right to be bigots. Ukrainian separatists have displayed the Confederate flag–along with that of Texas! I wonder if Governor Rick Perry will fly to Donetsk and stand with his fellow believers in secession and war against democracies. After all, Rick can handle children, why can’t he handle the Ukrainian army? The amazing aspect of this fascination with Nazi flags and flags for those who fight to retain slavery is that grandparents of separatists were murdered by Nazis!! How can a grandchild believe those who brutally killed their grandparents is someone to admire? I assume for this group, Adolf Hitler is a man of courage who fought for human rights!

Alexander Hug, who is deputy head of the Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe(OSCE) has been attempting to investigate the crash site of the downed Malaysian plane. As he commented: “an airplane crashes over a war zone, totally innocent vacationers fall from the sky, and access is prevented.” The reason is clear. Russia, which lost twenty-five million to Nazis during World War II now insists those who did the killing are heroes of Mother Russia. Russian TV Channel One was reporting that Western sources were preventing access to the crash site. Such is life in Putin Russia.

Does Israel Get A Free Pass From Media?

The current events between Israel and Palestinians is raising new questions concerning whether or not Israel gets a free pass from the American media. For example, when Palestinians murder innocent Israelis the media refer to them as “terrorists.” When Palestinians riot and throw stones at police, they are guilty of “violence.” When West Bank Jewish settlers destroy vines and other farm products of Palestinian farmers, the event never makes it to the media. Three Israeli youth just murdered an innocent Muslim teen, but it is doubtful if any newspaper in America will term them as TERRORISTS nor will their actions fall into the category of terrorism. If a Hamas spokesperson shouts hatred of Jews, it is reported as an example of stirring up violence. If Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promises revenge, promises to kill every person connected with the horrendous crime, the American media does not explore how such words will stir up anger and possibly lead to violence against the innocent.

A cousin of Mohammad Abu Khdeir was visiting his relatives. He was in a demonstration and soon found himself on the ground being held down by Israel police who proceeded to beat up the boy. He is a slightly built teen who can readily be handled by a single Israel policeman. Jodi Rudoren, head of the New York Times Jerusalem Bureau reported statements from an Israeli police spokesperson. He insisted the video which depicts the beating was “edited and biased.” Fair enough. Why didn’t Ms. Rudoren then ask him:

1. If the boy is being held down by police, why the need to beat him up?
2. How can a slightly built teen put up a fight against burly cops?

Prime Minister Netanyahu is responsible for his statements which urged revenge. Is it surprising that some Israel teens took him up on his promise by murdering an innocent child?

Torture, Torture, Everywhere In America

As a child growing up in the United States of America during World War II, movies constantly depicted the horrible Germans and Japanese as brutal foes. They tortured people, they gassed to death innocent people, heck, they even chopped off the heads of American prisoners. Thus, I was taught to believe that in my wonderful America, we were NOT like these evil people. We treated prisoners with dignity because the war was being fought in order to prove to the world that decency and respect for human life was central to the meaning of a democratic society. Of course, that was before the advent to power of Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld and George Bush, three men who decided that was central to the meaning of our Constitution, had no place in THEIR WORLD. These men decided to adopt tactics of the German Gestapo and the Japanese army in order to “Save America.”

Senator Dianne Feinstein who heads the Senate Intelligence Committee, will be issuing a 6,300 page document which describes in detail exactly how torture became the norm under President Bush’s fight to save AMERICAN DEMOCRACY. Former CIA directors are being given a chance to examine the document which provides evidence of torture during interrogations, rendition and detention. Oh, the report also provides a CIA defense of their behavior. I assume they argue, anything is OK to prevent Los Angeles from being destroyed by a hidden atomic bomb!

When a society becomes all they hate, it opens questions as to what originally did this society believe? I was raised to believe that Americans adhered to the US Constitution. When I entered the Army, I took the oath to defend this document. I thought President Bush took the same oath.

Question: What do we do to those who disregard their oath?

Death Takes No Holiday In Gaza

Once the hounds of war are unleashed, they gain increased momentum as they run faster and faster. Today, we Americans forget how so many yelled with joy when President George Bush stood before a banner proclaiming, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. Set in motion armies or guerrilla forces and each step along their path to killing results in more and more dead. Once the taste of blood is on their lips, a bit more blood is of no importance. A few weeks ago, there was a hesitant quiet along the Gaza and Israel border. Friday, marks the beginning of World War I a hundred years ago. Not a single person in the world on July 1, 1914 thought there would be a major war. A month later, misunderstandings, pride, foolishness had enveloped European leaders and they set in motion the slaughter of twenty million in a conflict no nation desired on July 31, 1914. However, the day war began streets in Berlin or Paris of Moscow or London were filled with joyous crowds chanting the song of war. This same process is now occurring in Gaza. Both sides are trapped in their promises to defeat the other, both sides have made promises of victory, both sides have gone too far down the road of war to believe it possible of returning from whence they began.

Hamas insists there can be no end unless Israel and Egypt lift the blockade. Why do they desire the lifting of this blockade? They need more concrete to build more tunnels through which they can get more weapons of destruction. Their policy of firing missiles was a show, not an act of military need. So, which Hamas leader is now prepared to admit making mistakes in strategy? On the other side is Israel. The Israel Defense Force(IDF) began an attack to wipe out missiles, stumbled into a maze of tunnels, and decided destroying tunnels was key to their decision to invade. The IDF was perfectly aware that Hamas encouraged civilians to gather close to those firing so the decision was made to blast away. It has now reached the point of blasting away. UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon told the world: “The precise location of the Jabalia Girls Elementary School and the fact that it was hosting thousands of internally displaced people was communicated to the Israel army 17 times to ensure its protection!”

However, once operating on the assumption that Hamas is always hiding within a crowd of civilians it becomes difficult to believe any crowd of civilians does NOT include Hamas fighters. So, the IDF races into battle to kill the enemy. At this point neither the IDF nor Hamas is clear as to who is the enemy!

Impeachment Redeux?

Throughout the history of the United States of America only two presidents confronted the prospect of being impeached–Andrew Johnson in the 1860s and Bill Clinton in the 1990s. In each case, the honor of introducing impeachment charges fell to the Republican party. Richard Nixon in the 1970s certainly engaged in actions that bordered on the illegal. Although, there was discussion among Democrats about impeachment, these charges were never filed. In other word, the party of Impeachment is the Republican party. An estimated 100 Republicans in the House of Representatives are hot to engage in an impeachment war with President Barack Obama. Among the issues for this group is the fact that Obama has issued Executive Orders because he has been unable to persuade this group to pass any laws that are needed in this nation. Heck, our Infrastructure Fund to build roads and bridges is nearly empty, and Republicans insist that no money can be spent on such worthless things such as roads or dams or bridges. At this juncture in history, the United States, which once led the world in infrastructure innovation, is now among the least able to do anything.

The issue of Executive Orders is rather interesting. At this moment, the following presidents issued at least twice as many Executive Orders as has Obama–Ronald Reagan, Richard Nixon, Dwight Eisenhower, Woodrow Wilson and Abraham Lincoln. For some reason, neither of these men was confronted with the prospect of being impeached. I wonder why?

Report In Al Ahram About Gaza

Given the reality that members of the American Congress are ready and willing to accept any act by Israel, and condemn any act by Hamas, we decided to present what an Arab newspaper is discussing events in Gaza. According to al Ahram in Egypt, Hamas only seeks to end the fighting and desires peace to reign in Gaza. Yasser Abed Rabbo, who heads the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), “after extensive calls and consultations with the brothers in Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the Palestinian leadership announced on behalf of everyone the willingness for a cease fire and humanitarian truce for 24 hours.” I always find it rather interesting that “the brothers” never include, “the sisters.” So, at this moment, Hamas will accept a 24 hour truce. Great news. At least for 24 hours people in Gaza will not be ducking shells and missiles. Of course, on Saturday, the UN(not the brothers) urged adoption of a 72 hour truce, but Hamas rejected it. There is something sad about this statement. Imagine at this moment, with over 1100 dead–77% being innocent civilian, an Egyptian newspaper is discussing a “24 hour” ceasefire!

Let me be perfectly clear that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shares responsibility for this slaughter of the innocent because he has consistently refused to engage with US Secretary of State John Kerry’s efforts to develop a comprehensive plan for peace between Israel and Palestinians. Based on what al Ahram reports, it is clear that Hamas, and the brothers, just want to continue fighting because it has become a sign of their manhoods to fight and fight to the bitter end. There is not a single story in al Ahram offering ideas for peace in the Middle East. Al Ahram is correct in condemning actions of Israel in their nonstop bombing which has resulted in death of the innocent. But, it it time for Arab media to present ideas and suggestions on how to achieve peace in the Middle East.

Muslim Vs Muslim-The Israel Mistake

The original Bush invasion of Iraq occurred at a time when conflict in the Middle East focused mainly upon Muslims focusing upon Israel or western Christian groups. Today, in 2014, the central conflict in the Middle East is Muslim vs Muslim. The defeat of Sunni Saddam Hussein, who had kept minority Sunnis under close control, resulted in triumph of Shiites who were determined to take revenge upon Sunnis who had for too long ruled over them. Syria was controlled by Sunni leaders such as the Assad family, but they were very secular in attitude and governance. Any demonstration of religion was for show purposes. The Assad clique had close working relations with secular Sunnis and Christians, and they were deeply concerned about rise of any Islamic religous figures. There regime was the perfect Muslim nation in which religion played a secondary role to that of power and prosperity. Bashar Assad married a very secular woman, and enjoyed the life of a modern upper class person. Yes, he attended the mosque, more for a photo op than for any deep involvement in religious issues.

The Middle East today is witnessing a new manifestation of older Sunni vs Shiite strugles. Shiites constitute about 15% of Muslims in the world, and a large percent of this group is located in the Middle East– Iran and Iraq. Islamic militants which swept into northern Iraq were Sunnis who resented loss of power in that nation to the Shiites. Hamas is as geatly opposed to the Egyptian government as it is to the Israelis. In Libya the conflict is between more secular Muslims vs more religious centered ones. The same struggle is dividing Tunisia and Algeria. Israel has nothing to do with these conflicts. Muslims are fighting Muslims.

A Shiite dilemma is they only possess power in the Middle East. Sunis dominate the Muslim religion throughout the rest of the world. If Shiites can not gain power in the Middle East it means they will never possess power anywhere in the world. A basic failure on the part of Israel is lack of understanding regarding the Muslim vs Muslim conflict. Instead of seeking alliances with secular Muslims, Israel fails to differentiate because its government views Muslims as some sort of monoithic entity. Israel must accept the Palestinian Authority as a leader in Palestine. It must empower Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and assist his efforts to destroy Hamas. How can this be accomplished?

1. Recognize the state of Palestine.

2. Accept that about 5% of the West Bank will constitute Jewish settlements.

3. Encourage the state of Palestine to forge a military alliance with Egypt in order to crush Hamas in Gaza. Israel could provide drones, and helicopters.

It is time the US and Israel recognied reality in the Middle East. The war to ensure peace must be won by Muslims, NOT Israel!