The view from my veranda

Shabbat Shalom letter from Jerusalem

26th November 2010

Shabbat Shalom to you.

We have an enormous amount of news to cover today so I will give you a precis and a link where appropriate and just a headline where not – I don’t want you getting bored!!!!!

Refugees from hunger, war and oppression in Africa walk to Israel over the Egyptian/Israel border……… yes to Israel not to the Arab countries. Egypt shoots them rather than arrest them! Genuine refugees, such as those from Darfur are accepted and given safe haven and amnesty in Israel but there are thousands who some here because through word of mouth they learn that we are a civilised and generous country. We cannot accept everyone, like other countries we must choose our citizens but there is a problem……….. how do you send people back to hunger, even those who steal across the border at night? We cannot do what America does and build a colossal wall and shoot those who break through. The government is debating the possibility of building refugee facilities to gather the illegals together but the sight of black faces gathered behind fences – albeit with all facilities provided- is too emotionally charged. It allows our detractors to misuse the pictures. Comparisons are too easy.

Greece, our newest best friend, has made a decision to return Greek citizenship to Holocaust survivors. The media is overjoyed. Why? Why in G-d’s name did they lose it!!!!

Erdogan of Turkey put his foot in his mouth yet again, while visiting Lebanon, claiming that if Israel attacks Lebanon, West Bank or Gaza he will…..well we don’t know what he will do and it is irrelevant since we don’t attack – we respond and defend! The only good thing to come from Erdogan is Israel’s new relationship with Greece!!!!

Professor Gerald Steinberg wrote an excellent article EXPOSING THE HUMAN RIGHTS FACADE The people and institutions that claim to uphold human rights and democracy are in fact nullifying these core moral principles.

Canada – excellent work by various bodies stopped UBC funding for Gaza Flotilla 2011.

Canada announced it will boycott the proposed Durban 3. Kol ha Kavod!!!

Still in Canada a moderate Moslem condemns virulent anti-Semitism. One can be Pro-Palestinian without hating Jews. My thanks to Wayne Shur for sending it to me.

BBC Panorama found that more than 40 Saudi Students’ Schools and Clubs are teaching the official Saudi national curriculum to about 5,000 pupils. Curriculum and books found to be offensive and anti-Semitic

Jews, Moslems and Christians joined together in a West Bank village to pray for rain in the parched Holy Land. 50 people gathered in the village of Al-Walajah between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, with representatives of each religion offering their own prayers. Israel, the Palestinian territories and the whole area have been plagued by several years of drought.

On Tuesday November 30th New York will see an attempt to frighten (terrorise) New Yorkers to boycott Israeli goods. Stores. Ensure those stores are not forced to remove Ahava and many Israeli products from their shelves due to lack of interest (fear). Buy, order and ensure the products and go to the stores mentioned below.

The Rev Malcolm Hedding is the Director of the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem and a true friend and supporter of Israel. This is his response to the libelous letter written by Rev Arisson a South African Minister
The Palestinians claim that the Kotel is not part of the Holy Temple. Duh!!! Of course not, it is part of the supporting wall of the Temple Mount which predates everyone and everything else as a Jewish Holy site by at least 1,000 years. It was chosen as the “Wailing Wall” as the closets point beneath the Holy of Holies to mourn the destruction of the Second Temple.

My friend Yitzchok lives in the UK but his heart is in Jerusalem. He brought to my attention that those who lambast Israel have problems…. NZ, Ireland, UK, Turkey, Greece, et economy and disasters – and the Israeli economy thriving. As a result of his comment I found this quote from Zecharia “And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.”

The cries of the uninformed claim a humanitarian abuses yet 180,000 Palestinians were treated in Israeli Hospitals this year. Thanks to efficient cooperation between the Israeli and the Palestinian sides, tens of thousands of Palestinians patients benefit from treatments in Israeli hospitals each year. Now that’s the truth!

This week we went to have my cast removed. What an experience. The waiting room was filled with Arabs, Jews, Russians and Ethiopians…….. the usual rainbow, all waiting to see Dr Rubenstein, the orthopaedic surgeon. There is a clear rule, everyone according to the time of his appointment except for dire emergencies and soldiers. Dr Rubenstein takes soldiers first, between and as his honoured patients. The strange thing is that even those noisy people who shout at anyone who might go before them in line are quiet about this rule. The doctor was pleased with me so I went off to the Russian lady who sued a circular saw (well that’s what I thought) to remove the cast and then to Xray with an Arab technician and back to the doctor. I WAS FREE!!! Physiotherapy and sturdy brogues ar ethe order of the day but I really appreciate being able to move!!!!

My greatest excitement is that within a short time I can go back to exploring the lanes, walls, malls and arcades of Jerusalem doing my favourite thing in the world………people watching!!!! Winter is still elusive, although the nights are now quite chilly and misty which brings the phenomenal moon-rises that take my breath away, watching the enormous golden globe rise on the horizon, rising fast as if it couldn’t wait to be aloft shining down on Jerusalem, ensuring her golden beauty. Maybe next week I will be able to tell you that I am back in Mahane Yehuda, smelling the spicy aromas, listening to the multi-accented calls of the costermongers and most of all, walking among the variegated people of Jerusalem in their multi-faceted glory.

I wish you Shabbat Shalom and hope that yesterday, Americans or not, you remembered to say thank you for all the amazing benefits of our lives and remembered who to thank.

With much love