7th January 2010.
Shabbat Shalom everyone.
News in brief
Egypt’s Wall You may or may not have heard it on the news but Egypt is building a deep, wide, long and heavy “fence” between Egypt and Gaza, to prevent the digging of arms tunnels. Food and basic needs will still be provided by Israel and the aid groups, but arms and murderers will no longer have easy access through tunnels. Hamas and their followers are furious, their violent hold on the people of Gaza endangered, and they demonstrated next to the fence, throwing rocks, stones and other missiles at the Egyptian soldiers. Since they know only violence they shot an Egyptian soldier dead. I told you, this battle has nothing to do with Israel.
Britain’s patience is snapping. This most open and tolerant of societies is paying dearly for its open doors. During a homecoming parade for soldiers fighting in Iraq a group of 7 Moslems stood and hurled foul abuse at the soldiers. They touched a very sensitive point and were immediately arrested. The war in Iraq and Afghanistan is not Vietnam; a war for survival against an enemy which is imposing its rotten credo upon us all.
We will all be affected by the attempt to blow Northwest 253 to smithereens over Detroit in the name of Allah. Current profiling will not work since Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was Nigerian, was well travelled, well educated and came from a wealthy Moslem family so did not fit the bill. Little by little the world is recognising that Israel has it right – on many levels – but in particular our approach to airport security checks. http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/744426–what-israel-can-teach-us-about-security
Yesterday Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon gave an excellent and detailed presentation entitled “Challenges for Israeli Foreign Policy” in which he explained the problems which face us all. http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/About+the+Ministry/Deputy_Foreign_Minister/Speeches/DepFM_Ayalon_Challenges_Israeli_Foreign_Policy_6-Jan-2010.htm
Israeli Ministerial Committee on Legislation will vote on a draft law by which every Member of Knesset will be obliged to pledge allegiance to the State of Israel. Arab MK El-Sana who enjoys absolute freedom, said: “Attempt to legitimize racism through legislation. We are citizens, not Zionists. Nor will we be.” This potential abuse of his freedom, the ludicrous news that South Africa is considering arresting Israelis and cries of human rights abuses by Israel from the far left take on a new light when one sees real human rights abuses in the much lauded Saudi Arabia where racism extends to the lane one is allowed to travel on the highway. http://images.travelpod.com/users/filfilfilfilksq/1.1248802498.highway-signs.jpg
Alan Dershowitz- The Case for Israel: Democracy’s Outpost http://www.thecaseforisrael.com/ is without question one of the most important programmes ever made. The interviewees are carefully chosen and the emphasis is on what Israel does right not on the undoubted sins of our foes. Here are some clips http://www.thecaseforisrael.com/trailer_clips/clips.html
Buy it for your community; demand your politicians watch it. Screenings http://www.thecaseforisrael.com/screenings_media/screenings.html
‘There are more new innovative ideas . . . coming out of Israel than there are out in [Silicon] Valley right now. And it doesn’t slow during economic downturns.” The authors of “Start-Up Nation,” Dan Senor and Saul Singer, quoting an executive at British Telecom in the WSJ article. This book has succeeded in changing perceptions and shining a radiant light on Israel and Israelis in a way no amount of bewailing our fate can achieve. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704779704574553884271802474.html
Bravo to Howard Schultz of Starbucks for his incredible effort to raise money for AIDS research. Starbucks invited and collated people from 156 countries around the world to sing “All you Need is Love” simultaneously on December 7th http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nh7D2g5v-Sg
We have a wonderful friend who spent his life fighting Breast Cancer always looking for the treatment most beneficial and least invasive, travelling the world to explain why. Michael not only gives himself 1,000% to his life’s work he still finds time to put forward the case for Israel in places that heed his words because of his reputation. Professor Michael Baum http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/339/dec29_2/b5543 has been nominated for a major award by the British Medical Journal. I have no reservations in asking you to vote. This is the link to vote http://www.bmj.com/#pd_a_19811
We went to the Jerusalem Theatre to see an Israeli movie “5 Hours from Paris”. Brilliantly executed the movie is subtle, sensitive and surprising I highly recommend seeing it. http://tiff.net/filmsandschedules/films/fivehoursfromparis
Global Warming seems to be taking a break! One expects freezing temperatures from North America and Northern Europe but when hear that Florida’s West Coast and Atlanta Georgia are cold…and that even London, usually protected from extreme temperatures, is snowed in, I begin to wonder if the whole scare is a political issue. Jerusalem is exceptionally beautiful right now. There is a chill in the air but even though it is cold (relatively) everyone is out walking because the sun is shining! Shouk Ramle was heaving with a myriad of shoppers, taking on the usual rainbow of characters and colours. I try to get there early, park, run in, buy and get out as fast as possible, but even the best laid plans of mice and men!! Today I may well go to Mahane Yehuda with my daughter Rachel, I thirst for the plethora of aromas, colours, and noisy banter and maybe will take her for coffee in one of the coffee shops. Café Hafuch is on the cards!
Life goes on sometimes joyous and sometimes very sad. My beautiful daughter-in-law Karen lost her adored and adoring father Claus this week. A gentle-man we will miss him. I wish I could be in the USA to hug Karen, Daniel, Ellen and all the family but I can’t. I wish them a long life and pray that they will know no more sorrow. May his soul rest in peace.
Shabbat Shalom, I hope that the 12 days of Christmas were peaceful and thoughtful for you.
With much love from Jerusalem, glistening in the sun, centre of our world.