Friday, May 27, 2022

Trump joke

A British doctor says: "In Britain, medicine is so advanced that we cut off a man's liver, put it in another man, and in 6 weeks, he is looking for a job."

The German doctor says: "That's nothing, in Germany we took part of a brain, put it in another man, and in 4 weeks he is looking for a job."  

The Russian doctor says: "Gentlemen, we took half a heart from a man, put it in another's chest, and in 2 weeks he is looking for a job."  

The American doctor laughs: "You are all behind us. A few days ago, we took a man with no brain, no heart, and no liver and made him President.

Igros Moshe on Kollel Income

Furthermore it is my opinion that those "Mischassidim" from the side of the Rambam's opinion is advice from the yetzer hara in order that they interrupt their learning and engage in labor and commerce and the like until ultimately they forget even the little which they already learned and aren't relaxed enough to fix even a small amount of time for learning Torah.

Since if the Rishonim were like melachim and said that it was not possible to engage in Torah and become wise in it while engaged in labor to sustain themselves by the work of their hands, certainly in our is not possible for anyone to boast that he is able to engage in labor and become wise in Torah. Therefore do not let the thought arise in your mind that advice of the yetzer hara that with a stipend from learning in Kollel, being a Rabbi, teacher of Torah, or Rosh Yeshiva there is any sort of sin or lack of middas Chassidus, since it is only to instigate one into separating from the Torah.

Lauren Boebert on Gun Control: 'When 9/11 Happened, We Didn't Ban Planes'

When 9/11 happened, we didn't ban planes, we secured the cockpit," Boebert said.
"And of course, leave it to Barack Obama to make this issue more divisive instead of allowing the nation to come together, mourn and heal," she added in an apparent reference to the former president's tweet linking the shooting in Uvalde to the two-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Israeli security officials demand 'immediate' explanation

Security officials in Israel are reportedly livid and demanding explanations from the United States about a leaked New York Times report regarding the recent assassination of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Colonel Hassan Sayyad Khodaei.

The report cited an intelligence official briefed on the communications said to be a secret channel through which Israel updates the Americans on its operations in the Islamic Republic.

Israeli officials are fearful that the leak will increase Iran's desire to stage a revenge operation.

According to the report, the Israelis told their American counterparts that the killing was meant as a warning to Iran to halt the operations of a covert group within the IRGC’s Quds Force known as Unit 840, tasked with abductions and assassinations of foreigners around the world, including Israeli civilians and officials.

Shulchan Arukh, Yoreh De'ah 246


Shulchan Arukh, Yoreh De'ah 246

REMA: A person should not think to engage in Torah and to acquire wealth or honor with the learning, for one who ventures to think such a thought will not achieve the crown of Torah. Rather, one should make his Torah fixed and his work contingent, and should reduce business and engage in Torah. He should put aside temporary pleasures from his mind and do work all day for his livelihood if he does not have enough to eat, and the rest of the day and the night he should engage in Torah. And it is a great quality to generate one's sustenance from the work of his hands, as it says, "The product of your hands you shall surely eat" (Ps. 128). Anyone who puts in his mind occupying himself with Torah and not working, but supporting himself from tz'dakah, behold, this one desecrates the Divine name and dishonors the Torah. For it is forbidden to derive benefit from words of Torah, and any Torah that does not have work along with it, it attracts sin and he winds up robbing people. And all of this applies to one who is healthy and can engage in his work or in a profession a little and provide for his livelihood. However, an elder or a sick person is permitted to derive benefit from his Torah such that they will provide for him. And some say that it is permitted even for a healthy person.

And therefore the practice in all Jewish communities has been that the Rav of the city has an income and provisions from the other people of the city, so that he will not have to engage in work in front of other people, so that the Torah becomes degraded in front of the multitude. And [this applies] specifically to the sage who needs it, but for a wealthy person it is prohibited. And some are more lenient, saying that it is permitted for a sage and his students to accept subsidies from those who donate in order to strengthen the hands of those who study Torah, since in this manner they can engage in Torah in affluence. Nevertheless, one who is able to provide for himself well from the work of his own hands and to engage in Torah, it is a pious quality and a gift of God, but this is not the nature of all persons, for it is impossible for everyone to engage in Torah and to become wise in it and to provide for himself by himself....

How can people justify studying Torah all the time?

"And not only the Tribe of Levi, but any person whose spirit moves him to separate himself and stand before Hashem, to serve Him in order to know Him...behold he has become sanctified as the Holy of Holies, and Hashem becomes his portion, his inheritance for ever. And He will provide his basic necessities for him in this world, as with the Kohanim and Levi'im..."

Rabbi Moshe Isserlis (Rama) quotes Maimonides' first statement, that encourages earning a livelihood. He notes, however, that there are dissenting views, and that their opinion is the one that "all places in Israel" have adopted.

Rabbis and Taxes

Nedarim (62b) Rava said: It is permitted for a Torah scholar to say: I will not pay the head tax [karga], as it is written that the king of Persia wrote to Ezra, with regard to the priests, the Levites, and others who worked in the Temple: “It shall not be lawful to impose minda, belo, and halakh upon them” (Ezra 7:24). And Rabbi Yehuda said: Minda; this is the king’s portion. Belo; this is the money of the head tax. And halakh; this is arnona, a levy on people and their animals to perform physical labor in the service of the ruling authority. Since a Torah scholar is considered equivalent to a priest, as he is also dedicated to a sacred task, this exemption applies to him as well.

And Rava said further: It is permitted for a Torah scholar to say: I am a servant of the priests of fire worship and therefore I will not pay the head tax. Rava maintains that a scholar may issue a statement of this kind in a place where the priests of fire-worshippers are exempt from the head tax, because he actually is declaring himself a servant of God, who is referred to as “a devouring fire” (Deuteronomy 4:24). What is the reason that he is allowed to make this statement? He is saying it merely in order to chase a lion away from him, i.e., to avoid suffering a loss.

The Gemara relates that Rav Ashi had a particular forest, and he sold it for its wood to the temple of fire worship. Ravina said to Rav Ashi: Isn’t there the prohibition: “You shall not put a stumbling block before the blind” (Leviticus 19:14), which prohibits assisting others in committing transgressions? And yet you are providing assistance to an idolatrous cult. He said to him: Most of the wood they use is for kindling, not for their ritual service. Consequently, I need not be concerned that the particular wood that I have sold them will be used for idolatry.

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Terrorist to get a free nose job?

Terrorist Asra'a Jabas from Jerusalem, who was injured in a terror attack she carried out, has petitioned the Supreme Court demanding that the Israel Prisons Service fund a cosmetic nose job following her injury during that terror attack.

Scientist: 'Abu Aqleh was shot by a Palestinian terrorist, says evidence'

From the stills and video shots of the incident, Shachaf notes, "it's clear that the journalists were standing behind a wall. The wall hid them from the IDF forces who were on the other side, further away. No shots could have penetrated that wall, and the same was the case with the shooting of al-Dura, as we showed from the investigation we conducted there at the time." According to Shachaf, the Al Jazeera journalists were standing in a spot that was protected from behind, from their right, and from in front of them, and was only open to their left, facing the Palestinian terrorists who were firing wildly, in the vague direction of the IDF forces.

Shooting at Texas elementary school leaves 19 children dead, horrifies nation

Speaking in the U.S. Senate shortly after the initial death toll was announced, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) challenged Americans to act, citing the massacre in his own state at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012.

”This isn’t inevitable. These kids weren’t unlucky. This only happens in this country,” Murphy said. “And nowhere else, nowhere else do little kids go to school thinking that they might be shot that day. Nowhere else do parents have to talk to their kids, as I have had to do, about why they got locked into a bathroom and told to be quiet for five minutes just in case a bad man entered that building. Nowhere else does that happen except here in the United States of America. And it is a choice. It is our choice to let it continue.”
California Gov. 
Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, tweeted a similar message: “Another shooting. And the GOP won’t do a damn thing about it. Who the hell are we if we cannot keep our kids safe. This is preventable. Our inaction is a choice.”

Uvalde School Shooting: How You Can Help After 20 Killed at Elementary

The Uvalde shooting was the 27th mass shooting at a U.S. school during 2022 alone, according to Education Week. The shooting came only 10 days after a mass shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, claimed 10 lives.

Biden: When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby?

“When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby? When in God’s name are we going to do what we know in our gut needs to be done?” said Biden, adding, “The idea that an 18-year-old can walk into a gun store and buy two assault weapons -- it's just wrong.”

GOP primary win for Georgia secretary who wouldn’t ‘find’ votes for Trump in 2020

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who was a top target of former US President Donald Trump, has won the Republican primary as he seeks reelection.

Raffensperger beat three challengers, including Trump-endorsed US Rep. Jody Hice, who had criticized his handling of the 2020 election.

Raffensperger was among Trump’s chief targets when the former president turned his wrath on top Georgia officials for not taking steps to overturn his narrow election loss to Democrat Joe Biden in the state. Trump insisted without proof that victory had been stolen from him through widespread voter fraud.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Ra'am: We got huge budgets for Arab sector

The United Arab List (Ra'am) presented its achievements in the decision of the Finance Committee today to approve the transfer of NIS 740 million for the Arab sector.

The decision includes the transfer of NIS 400 million from the Housing Ministry for infrastructure development, planning and construction in the Arab sector, NIS 200 million from the Interior Ministry to Arab municipalities, NIS 90 million from the Welfare Ministry to combat poverty and violence in Arab communities, and NIS 50 million from the Science and Social Equality Ministries for the development of research and science programs and youth support groups.

Shin Bet foils Hamas plot to assassinate MK Ben Gvir, bomb Jerusalem rail with drone

Israeli security forces uncovered an active Hamas terror cell in East Jerusalem that planned a series of attacks, including against far-right MK Itamar Ben Gvir, authorities said Tuesday.

According to the Shin Bet security agency and Israel Police, the five men planned a shooting attack against Ben Gvir and other Israeli targets, as well as kidnappings of Israeli soldiers, and a bombing attack on the Jerusalem light rail using a drone.

Southern Baptist Convention vilified sex abuse survivors - report

The seven-month investigation found that survivors had come forward over two decades about abusers within the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).

But their pleas for intervention were met with "resistance, stonewalling, and even outright hostility" by officials.

With 13 million members, SBC is the largest Protestant body in the US.

Sexual harassment, power abuse allegations rattle Germany’s liberal Jewish community

A law firm that investigated abuse charges within the Catholic church in Germany is now doing the same for the country’s main Jewish organization, in the latest development of a mounting scandal that could topple Germany’s liberal Jewish establishment.

The Gercke Wollschläger firm will examine “allegations of sexualized harassment and abuse of power” at Abraham Geiger College, the Central Council of Jews in Germany announced last week.

It is the second investigation related to allegations against Rabbi Walter Homolka, the seminary’s founder and leader, and his husband that burst into public view May 6 in an explosive article in Die Welt, a German newspaper.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Marjorie Taylor Greene Pushes Bill Gates Monkeypox Conspiracy

During the Thursday night edition of her Facebook Live show MTG:Live, Greene baselessly connected the current monkeypox outbreak—which has consisted of fewer than 100 cases globally including at least one confirmed case in Massachusetts and one suspected case in New York—and Gates, the Microsoft founder who has often featured as a central character in right-wing conspiracy theories.

The antisemitic roots of the Great Replacement theory

There are many iterations of the 'Great Replacement Theory', but the most common threads that have been percolating on extremist forums detail a plot to replace 'indigenous white populations' with nonwhite immigrants.

The essence of the theory is that white citizens in Western countries are being replaced by ethnic minority people to the detriment of the societies and in some cases, entrench support for one political party over another.

In many readings of the theory, Jewish 'elites' are attempting to hasten this process and are directing governments to pursue policies that undermine the control of white people over countries.

What is the heresy in this cover?


"Who knows what decree that Rabbi Shimon wanted to annul with these holy souls"

Palestinian fatally hurt on Temple Mount wasn’t hit by sponge bullet – report

According to medical findings reported by the Haaretz daily, a-Sharif’s body showed no signs of injury from sponge bullets. Sources at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital said he fell over as a result of a heart attack, which caused extensive brain injury and, ultimately, his death.

Does turmeric’s reputation translate into real health benefits?

“The problem of curcumin’s absorption has been enthusiastically addressed by a number of supplement companies and researchers,” says Wyatt Brown, a researcher at “They typically do this by packaging it in highly absorbable lipids of various types so that more of it gets into the body.”

'No one's paying any attention': The week that Republicans ignored Trump's election lies

Ever since the 2020 election, the Republican Party has been transfixed by Trump’s baseless claim that the 2020 election was “rigged,” a falsehood large majorities of Republicans still believe. It’s an obsession that has animated primary campaigns across the country. And it will almost certainly resurface in the general election, when Republicans are running against Democrats, not one another.

Yet in Pennsylvania, Trump’s earliest effort to graft his 2020 complaints onto ballot counting in a midterm primary is falling flat. MAGA hard-liners who’ve lost primaries in other states in recent weeks have not contested the results. And when the primary calendar turns to Georgia on Tuesday, Trump’s election conspiracy crusade is likely to take another hit.

Secrets of the Cave of the Patriarchs

A 600-page doctoral thesis composed over the past eight years by Dr. Noam Arnon, reveals and explores the details of these visits, and much more. Arnon's research covers a period of 2,500 years in the history of the site, and, like his previous works on the Cave of the Patriarchs, deals with a broad complex of geographical, geological, archaeological, and Jewish and historical sources, that were not all available to those researching the cave in the past.

Prayers for Schlesinger Twins and their Mother


Sunday, May 22, 2022

The rise and rise of the Strictly Orthodox

And more internationally, expect Charedi advocates to flex their religious muscles on issues like the egalitarian prayer space at the Western Wall. Israel’s fragile coalition has yet again stalled on the long-delayed implementation of an extension of the egalitarian area, which would give it acess from the main Kotel plaza, for fear of provoking an Orthodox backlash.

For many Progressive Jews, this remains a touchstone issue that symbolises a commitment to religious diversity in Judaism. But pluralism remains anathema to the Charedim and they will not accept it quietly.

Trump shares CPAC Hungary platform with notorious racist and antisemite

When he was awarded the Hungarian order of merit in 2016 by the country’s nationalist prime minister, Viktor Orbán, the star speaker on the first day of CPAC Hungary on Thursday, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum protested, saying it “reflects the longstanding refusal of the leadership of Hungary’s ruling Fidesz party to distance itself from Bayer, in spite of Bayer’s repeated pattern of racist, xenophobic, antisemitic, and anti-Roma incitement”.

Hungarian journalist who called Jews ‘stinking excrement’ addresses CPAC conference

The two-day conference featured speeches from former US president Donald Trump; Fox News host Tucker Carlson; Trump’s former White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows; and Republican lawmakers from Florida and Maryland.

Gur Hassidic factions fight for second night in a row, clash with police

Clashes broke out between members of the Gur Hassidic sect in Jerusalem for the second night in a row on Saturday evening.

Israel Police arrived and attempted to use crowd dispersal methods to break up the crowd.

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Female Jewish leaders sue Haredi news site for blurring their faces

A branch of the Reform Movement in Israel is suing a popular ultra-Orthodox news website in Jerusalem over its policy of blurring the faces of women.

The Israel Religious Action Center said Wednesday it was seeking NIS 345,000 ($100,000) in damages from the Behadrei Haredim website for a picture it ran last year of female leaders of Jewish movements meeting with President Isaac Herzog, in which the faces of the women were digitally smudged.

The photo in question was published on Behadrei Haredim in December 2021. Initially, IRAC demanded that Behadrei Haredim publish the original photo and pay NIS 50,000 in compensation for each woman appearing in the photo. When the website refused, the group began preparing the lawsuit.

Hospitals strike after relatives of deceased patients attack staff

A day-long hospital strike was announced on Thursday in response to a series of violent attacks against hospital staff, including one at the Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya on Wednesday and another at Hadassah University Medical Center at Mount Scopus on Monday.

Modern Orthodox ,moderate in passion

Yeshiva University President Rabbi Norman Lamm has often said that modern Orthodoxy”s central problem today is that its adherents tend to be moderate about their passions, rather than passionate about their moderation.

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Blemished Gedolim IV

 Ramban (Bereishis 12:10) Know that Abraham our father unintentionally committed a great sin by bringing his righteous wife to a stumbling-block of sin on account of his fear for his life. He should have trusted that G-d would save him and his wife and all his belongings for G-d surely has the power to help and to save. His leaving the Land, concerning which he had been commanded from the beginning, on account of the famine, was also a sin he committed, for in famine G-d would redeem him from death. It was because of this deed that the exile in the land of Egypt at the hand of Pharaoh was decreed for his children. 

Failure of rabbinical leadership to see the consequences of their actions

Mesilas Yeshorim(Chapter 20): It is important to understand that one should not view an act of piety according to its initial consequences but he should examine and think about also the long-term consequences. That is because an action might initially look good but according to its consequences it is bad – so therefore he should avoid it. If he does it anyway, he is a sinner not a pious person. For example consider the incident with Gedalial ben Achichem. It is clear to us that because of his great piety he did not judge Yishmael for the bad and did not accept lashon harah…. The consequences were that he was killed and the Jewish people were dispersed in exile and the flicker of hope that remained – was extinguished. In fact the people that were killed as a result of his actions have been described as if he personally killed them. … We also find that the Second Temple was destroyed because of this type of unthinking piety. This was the incident of Bar Kamtza. It says in Gittin (56a) that the Rabbis thought that they should offer the blemished animal as a sacrifice. But R’ Zechariya ben Avkulas told them that they could not - because people would say that it is permissible to sacrifice a blemished animal. They said so we should kill this animal so it can’t be sacrificed. He replied that people will mistakenly think whenever a blemish is found in a sanctified animal it should be killed. Thus the animal was not sacrificed and the informer went to the Roman government and told them that the had Jews refused to offer the sacrifice. The Emperor came and destroyed Jerusalem. Thus the gemora concludes, “Because of the humility of R’ Zechariya, Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed and the Jews were sent in to Exile.” Thus we should not judge an act of piety solely by itself. We need to examine it carefully from all the perspectives that a person can think of until he judges it truly as to whether doing the deed is preferable to not doing it. This is found more commonly with the mitzva of chastisement (Vayikra 19:17). Many times a person will chastise another at a place or time when his words won’t be listened to and this will cause the person to strength his wicked behavior. In such a case the chastisement is not an act of piety but rather he should remain silent. That is why our Sages say (Yevamos 65b): Just as it is a mitzva to say chastisement when it will be heard it is also a mitzva not to say it when it won’t be heard. Thus while it is obvious that all Jews should be enthusiastic and run to do mitzva and to try to be involved in them – but there are times when this can lead to fights which actually debase the mitzva and causes a desecration of heaven. In such cases it is clear that the pious person should not try to do the mitzva and even avoid it – rather than causes a profanation of G‑d name.

[1]  מסילת ישרים (פרק כ): והנה מה שצריך להבין הוא כי אין לדון דברי החסידות על מראיהן הראשון, אלא צריך לעיין ולהתבונן עד היכן תולדות המעשה מגיעות, כי לפעמים המעשה בעצמו יראה טוב, ולפי שהתולדות רעות יתחייב להניחו, ולו יעשה אותו יהיה חוטא ולא חסיד. הנה מעשה גדליה בן אחיקם גלוי לעינינו שמפני רוב חסידותו שלא לדון את ישמעאל לכף חובה או שלא לקבל לשון הרע, אמר ליוחנן בן קרח שקר אתה דובר על ישמעאל (ירמיה מ'), ומה גרם? גרם שמת הוא ונפזרו ישראל וכבה גחלתם הנשארה, וכבר ייחס הכתוב הריגת אנשים אשר נהרגו אליו כאילו הרגם הוא, .... והבית השני גם הוא חרב ע"י חסידות כזה אשר לא נשקל במשקל צדק - במעשה דבר קמצא, אמרו (גיטין נו.): סבור רבנן לקרוביה, א"ל רבי זכריה בן אבקולס יאמרו בעלי מומין קריבין לגבי מזבח, סבור למקטליה א"ל רזב"א יאמרו מטיל מום בקדשים יהרג, בין כך ובין כך הלך אותו הרשע והלשין את ישראל, בא הקיסר והחריב ירושלים, והוא מה שאמר ר"י על זה: ענותנותו של ר' זכריה החריבה את ביתנו ושרפה את היכלנו והגליתנו. הרי לך שאין לדון בחסידות המעשה באשר הוא שם לבד, אך צריך לפנות כה וכה לכל הצדדין שיוכל שכל האדם לראות, עד שידון באמת איזה יכשר יותר העשיה או הפרישה. הנה התורה צותה (ויקרא יט:יז): "הוכח תוכיח את עמיתך", וכמה פעמים יכנס אדם להוכיח חטאים במקום או בזמן שאין דבריו נשמעים וגורם להם להתפרץ יותר ברשעם ולחלל ה' להוסיף על חטאתם פשע, הנה בכיוצא בזה אינו מן החסידות אלא לשתוק. וכך אמרו ז"ל (יבמות סה:): כשם שמצוה לומר דבר הנשמע, כך מצוה שלא לומר את שאינו נשמע. ראה פשוט הוא שראוי לכל אדם להיות מקדים ורץ לדבר מצוה ולהשתדל להיות מן העוסקים בה, אך הנה לפעמים יכול להולד מזה מריבה שיותר תתבזה המצוה, ויתחלל בה שם שמים ממה שיתכבד, בכיוצא בזה ודאי שחייב החסיד להניח את המצוה ולא לרדוף אחריה.

Blemished Gedolim III

 Rambam (Shemonah Perakim #7): You should know that every prophet only experienced prophecy after he has acquired all the appropriate personality traits… Chazal indicated this by saying that “Prophecy only manifests itself in one who is wise, strong and rich.” … Strength here is referring to moral strength not physical strength as we find in Avos (4:1), “Who is strong? He who controls his passions.” However prophecy is not conditional on these personality traits being perfect. We see that even though Shlomo HaMelech was a prophet nevertheless he possessed imperfections as we see by his desires i.e., his many wives… We also see that David HaMelech was a prophet in spite of acting cruelly. Even though this cruelty was only manifested against idol worship and heretics and he was merciful with Jews, nevertheless G‑d said that because of this imperfection he was not allowed to build the Temple. We find that Eliyahu had a problem with anger - even though it was directed entirely to heretics - our Sages tells us that he was consequently not fit to be a leader nor was his zealotry appropriate for others to emulate. We find Shmuel also manifested failings in his fear of Shaul and Yaakov in his fear of Esav. These type of improper attributes are a barrier against a prophet getting close to G‑d. The more imperfection the greater distance is created. Consequently the imperfection can diminish the quality of prophecy or eliminate it altogether…

Women and witchcraft

 Moreh haNevuchim (3:37) In most cases the condition is added that women must perform these actions. Thus it is stated in reference to the means of obtaining rain, that ten virgins dressed with diadems and red garments should dance, push each other, moving backwards and forwards, and make signs to the sun: the result of this long process was believed by the idolaters to be a downpour of rain. It is further stated that if four women lay on their back, with their feet spread and lifted up, said certain words and did certain things whilst in this disgraceful position, hail would discontinue coming down in that place. The number of these stupid and mad things is great; in all of them without exception women are required to be the agent.

Moreh haNevuchim (3:37) It is the object and center of the whole Law to abolish idolatry and utterly uproot it, and to overthrow the opinion that any of the stars could interfere for good or evil in human matters, because it leads to the worship of stars. It was therefore necessary to slay all witches as being undoubtedly idolaters, because every witch is an idolater: they only have their own strange ways of worship, which are different from the common mode of worship offered to those deities. But in all performances of witchcraft it is laid down as a rule that women should be employed in the chief operation; and therefore the Law says, "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" (Exod. 22:17). Another reason is the natural reluctance of people to slay women. 

Russia Accuses U.S. of Blocking Peace Deal So War Kills More Russians

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed on Tuesday that the United States and the United Kingdom have been exerting influence over Ukrainian negotiators to prolong the war in Ukraine with the intent of killing off more Russian soldiers.

Retired colonel speaks out on Russian TV

The Kremlin still maintains that the Russian offensive is going according to plan.

But on Monday night, studio guest Mikhail Khodarenok, a military analyst and retired colonel, painted a very different picture.

He warned that "the situation [for Russia] will clearly get worse" as Ukraine receives additional military assistance from the West and that "the Ukrainian army can arm a million people".

Convicted paedophile Grynhaus released despite minister's call to keep him jailed

Convicted paedophile Todros Grynhaus has been released from prison after serving just over half his sentence despite an application from Justice Secretary Dominic Raab for the Parole Board to reconsider its decision.

Grynhaus, 57, from Salford, the son of a prominent rabbi, was jailed for 13 years and two months in July 2015 for indecent assault and sexual assault against two girls aged around 14 and 15.

Health minister allows artificial insemination for ‘chained’ women

Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz changed his ministry’s policies on Tuesday to give so-called “chained women” access to artificial insemination and other fertility treatments, following years of efforts by activists.

Until now, such options were all but off-limits for “chained” women — whose husbands refuse to grant them a divorce, or get in Hebrew, leaving them in a tragic state of religious and legal limbo — as Health Ministry guidelines required the consent of a married woman’s partner before she could use them, which they were unlikely to request or receive from their divorce-refusing husbands.

This week, Horowitz revised those guidelines, despite stiff opposition from the Chief Rabbinate, the Walla news site reported.

Madison Cawthorn Concedes Primary, Loses to Chuck Edwards

Cawthorn, who is a vocal supporter of former President Donald Trump, was seen as a rising GOP star two years ago when he was first elected. Since then, the representative who had received a highly sought-after Trump endorsement has made repeated scandalous headline appearances in the recent months.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Finland and Sweden want to join NATO. Here's how it works and what comes next

Finland's neutrality has historically proved more difficult, as it shared a massive border with an authoritarian superpower.
A Finno-Soviet treaty known as the Agreement of Friendship, signed in 1948 and extended on occasion through the decades, prohibited Finland from joining any military alliance considered hostile to the USSR, or from allowing a Western attack through Finnish territory.
To keep the peace, Finns adopted a process some call "Finlandization," in which leaders acceded to Soviet demands from time to time. The term was coined during the Cold War and has been applied to other countries in which a superpower exerts control over smaller neighboring states.

Trump Kept Asking if China Was Shooting Us With a ‘Hurricane Gun’

Near the beginning of Donald Trump’s time in office, the then-president had a pressing question for his national-security aides and administration officials: Does China have the secret technology — a weapon, even — to create large, man-made hurricanes and then launch them at the United States? And if so, would this constitute an act of war by a foreign power, and could the U.S. retaliate militarily? Then-President Trump repeatedly asked about this, according to two former senior administration officials and a third person briefed on the matter.

“It was almost too stupid for words,” said a former Trump official intimately familiar with the then-sitting president’s inquiry. “I did not get the sense he was joking at all.”

Who are the real insiders?

 We have discussed the chareidi chiloni divide the Ashkenaz Sephardi split FFB vs Bal tshuva, young vs old, American vs Israeli, Litvaks vs Chasidim as well as Orthodox vs non Orthodox. The real question is who thinks they belong and are not only see themselves as insiders but the transmitters of the true mesorah

I was told the only people who feel that they truly belong are the grandchildren of gedolim - everyone else feels like an outsider. 

Pre-army program head arrested for alleged sexual acts against girls

Yosef Ohayon is the 40-year-old Jerusalem resident arrested for suspected sexual offenses against female minors in a pre-military (mechina) program under his supervision. His name was released for publication on Sunday night.

Ohayon, the head of the program, would contact the girls and took advantage of his close relationship with them, as well as his fake extensive military background — which is how he presented himself to them — to get increasingly closer to them and exploit them. The age range of the girls was 14-18, KAN noted.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Walking with G-d

 Rabbeinu Bachya (Bereishis 06:09) Noach’s third virtue is described by the words “Noach walked with G-d.” This virtue of “walking with G-d” is something so exceptional that we find it mentioned only very rarely. Nonetheless, it is one of the imperatives G-d (Moses) commanded the Jewish people (Deut. 13,5) when He said:, “You shall follow the Lord your G-d, etc.” Interestingly , in our verse the Torah does not describe Noach as having walked behind G-d, The Torah says “he made himself walk.” This was not a construction that can be applied to an entire nation and this is why Moses did not phrase his imperative as,”make yourselves follow (in the footsteps of) the Lord your G-d.” Only select individuals ever attain such a lofty spiritual level and only after having become outstandingly righteous people The very attainment of that level of comprehension of the forces at work in our universe reveals that the person who commands it has an appreciation of G-d and His Majesty. This is what David meant when he said (Psalms 19,2) “the heavens declare the glory of G-d , the sky proclaims His handiwork.” ….This is also why our sages (Shabbat 75) have said: “anyone who knows how to calculate the various seasons and horoscopes correctly and fails to use his ability is the subject of the verse (Isaiah 5,12) “and he fails to take note of what He is designing.” We have another scriptural verse (Psalms 82,5) “they neither knew nor understood, they make themselves walk in darkness;” this verse too describes people who, though able to comprehend the mysteries of nature, fail to pay attention to this and to draw the appropriate conclusions regarding their conduct on earth. The reason that Noach’s name is mentioned three times in this verse is because of the three levels of perfection he had attained, i.e. he was righteous, perfect, and he walked with G-d.

Israeli TV show puts wall between secular and ultra-Orthodox Jews

Many Israelis increasingly see secular-Haredi disaccord about the future of the state as a greater concern than the Palestinian issue, and fear it could tear the country apart from the inside.

Secular Israeli Fear of the ultra-Orthodox Has Turned Into Hatred

In my many meetings with secular Israelis, I have recently encountered numerous manifestations of fear of ultra-Orthodox Jews. More precisely, their fear for the future because of the very existence of the Haredim. The fear is expressed across a broad spectrum: from sharp criticism and show of contempt, to latent hatred and pure, unadulterated panic that is anything but hidden.

Haredim, not Arabs or Iran, are the biggest threat to Israel - opinion

It’s not from the Palestinians, important though they are (as I argued on these pages), nor from the wider Arab world or even Iran. The greatest danger is from within: the rapidly expanding haredi state-within-a-state whose current dynamic cannot continue without ending the country’s brittle tenure as a Western-style democracy with per capita income to rival Britain or France.

Do Israel's haredim really live off the state?

What is it about Haredim that interests Israelis politically more than, say, security or the housing crisis? Well, exemption from army service is without a doubt a top issue. And many blame haredim for spreading Covid-19. But if you follow the extensive media coverage of haredim, you’ll notice that lack of contribution to the Israeli economy and manipulation of the national budget are an even greater source of contention for many citizens. As Liberman posted recently in Facebook: "On the day that Balfour ceases to be Deri, Gafni, and Litzman’s bank account, that is the day we can point to as the beginning of the Israeli economy’s recovery."

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Secular Jews are the true "fearful" ones

 Over heard at a recent graduating class of hareidi women in a special program to train them in scientific knowledge

One of the secular professors commented " \They just want to steal our knowledge"

Fact-checking “2000 Mules,” the movie alleging ballot fraud

CLAIM: At least 2,000 “mules” were paid to illegally collect ballots and deliver them to drop boxes in key swing states ahead of the 2020 presidential election.

THE FACTS: True the Vote didn’t prove this. The finding is based on false assumptions about the precision of cellphone tracking data and the reasons that someone might drop off multiple ballots, according to experts.

Donald Trump Slams Fox News, Echoes Dinesh D'Souza's '2000 Mules' Complaint

"Fox News is no longer Fox News," Trump posted on his TruthSocial account. "They won't even show or discuss the greatest & most impactful documentary of our time, "2000 Mules." The Radical Left Democrats are thrilled - They don't want the TRUTH to get out."

Trump's gripes echoed those of author and conservative political commentator D'Souza, who on Monday accused Fox and Newsmax for not providing coverage of his film.

10 people killed in a racially motivated mass shooting at a Buffalo supermarket, police say. The 18-year-old suspect is in custody\\\

Experts consider easy access to guns a root cause of the violence, and open-carry states lower the barrier for people to own and carry guns in public. But the spike in violence since summer 2020 has been general, across cities and states with lax and strict gun laws, with progressive and conservative prosecutors, as well as Republican and Democratic mayors and governors.

Saturday, May 14, 2022

White House says it 'misstated' that vaccines were unavailable when President Biden took office

"We previously misstated that vaccines were unavailable in January 2021. We should have said that they were not widely available. Vaccines became available shortly before the President came into office. Since then, he’s responsible for fully vaccinating over 200 million people," the tweet from Friday night states.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

MK Bezalel Smotrich: Government must stop planned Arab-Israeli procession in Lod

Religious Zionism party head MK Bezalel Smotrich has made an urgent request to Public Security Minister Omer Barlev, having learned of the intention of the "People's Committee of Lod" to hold a procession this Friday to mark the one-year anniversary of the "Glorious Events" - a reference to the riots that took place last year in Lod and other mixed Arab-Jewish cities.


Sefer HaIkkarim (1:20:1) A thing perceived by an unusually popular and trustworthy person or by a number of persons of superior powers of comprehension or by an unusually large number of persons, is more likely to satisfy the mind of its reality and to be firmly believed than a thing not so accredited. For this reason God desired that the Torah should be given through Moses with great publicity and in the presence of a mighty multitude of six hundred thousand people. For according to the wise men of the Cabala this number includes all physiognomies, hence the publicity could not be greater, though the number of persons had been multiplied many times.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Trump endorses Thomas Massie, incumbent opposed by Republican Jewish Coalition

Donald Trump endorsed Thomas Massie, a Kentucky Republican congressman whose opposition to a Holocaust education bill helped earn him the rare distinction of being an incumbent criticized by the Republican Jewish Coalition.

Massie is one of a number of Republicans the former president is backing in the primaries ahead of this year’s midterm congressional elections in a bid to prove he still has sway in the party. Trump has also endorsed Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, another incumbent Republican the RJC’s affiliated political action committee has opposed in a primary.

The RJC already had its sights set on Massie: He had opposed funding for Holocaust education and a resolution that condemned Israel boycotters. More recently, he was the only Republican who opposed $1 billion in additional funding to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system after it was depleted in the Gaza conflict a year ago. Massie is a libertarian and cites his opposition to government overreach in all of these votes.

'Like with al-Dura, IDF will be proved innocent'

Dr. Yehuda David said, who uncovered the blood libel surrounding the alleged killing of Muhammad al-Dura by IDF troops, believes Israel must wage an explanatory and practical struggle to prove that its soldiers are not responsible for the death of Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Aqleh, who was killed in a shootout between IDF forces and Arab terrorists in the Jenin area Wednesday morning.

"Obviously there is every chance of winning this battle," Dr. David tells Israel National News. "We need to go back to 2001 to the al-Dura affair. There was a video feature then that IDF soldiers allegedly killed a child who was hiding behind debris while his father protected him. As for the instructions to open fire, I have been in these battles many times as a military doctor. There is no such thing. An IDF soldier must obtain permission to open fire on such a target."

According to Dr. David, there has never been a direct shooting of a journalist by IDF soldiers, and it is unlikely that this changed today. "It is clear that the Palestinians are thirsty for Israeli blood and want to direct this plot again. This is a battle that should be conducted wisely and requires a joint investigation between the PA and Israel, to see what kind of bullet hit this poor journalist and then perform ballistic surgery."

OAN Clip Acknowledging 'No Widespread Voter Fraud' Viewed Over 300K Times

A settlement was reached in late April after two Georgia election workers filed a lawsuit against OAN. The election workers, Ruby Freeman and Wandrea "Shaye" Moss claimed the news channel falsely claimed they engaged in ballot fraud during the 2020 election.

More specifically, the mother and daughter pair sued the OAN Network, its owners and its chief White House correspondent for claiming that they introduced suitcases of illegal ballots and committed other acts of fraud to alter the outcome of the presidential election in Georgia.

The fight for truth over the killing of an Al Jazeera reporter in Jenin.

The IDF and the Israeli Government, quickly recommended a dispassionate joint forensic investigation and pathology test on the deceased to ascertain how she was killed. The bullet would have been a critical piece of evidence, but the Palestinian Authority adamantly refused such an investigation while accusing Israel of killing her without any evidence to back up their accusation.

Robert Regan, GOP Candidate Who Told Women to 'Enjoy' Rape, Loses Race

A Republican candidate for the Michigan House of Representatives who made headlines in March for suggesting that women who are raped should "lie back and enjoy it" has lost his race in a surprise defeat.

Robert "RJ" Regan has lost his bid to represent Michigan's 74th district, according to unofficial results reported by The Detroit Free Press on Tuesday night and with all precincts reporting.

Democrat Carol Glanville had defeated Regan in the special election by more than 1,500 votes based on results as of 10.30 p.m. ET, winning 51 percent of the vote to Regan's 40 percent, while 7.9 percent support went to write-in candidates.

Florida’s examples of banned topics in math books derided as ‘political theater’

“Those examples were given with no context and were not even elementary-level material,” Andrew Spar, president of the Florida Education Association that represents more than 150,000 educators, said. “So it seems like it’s more about smoke and mirrors of trying to accomplish a political agenda than really about what we are teaching our kids.”

“What educators and parents are concerned about is if we don’t have teachers in our classrooms, or bus drivers to get kids to school on time, then our kids aren’t learning math or any other subject,” Spar said.

“We’re expecting over 9,000 teacher vacancies by the end of the year, according to the state board that he appoints, and we have a massive bus driver, paraprofessional, cafeteria worker, custodian shortage in addition. We’ve heard the governor say or do nothing about it.

“These kinds of antics and political theater going on over these textbooks is exactly what’s driving people out of the profession.”

The Religious Right and the Abortion Myth

The history of that movement, however, is more complicated. White evangelicals in the 1970s did not mobilize against Roe v. Wade, which they considered a Catholic issue. They organized instead to defend racial segregation in evangelical institutions, including Bob Jones University.

To suggest otherwise is to perpetrate what I call the abortion myth, the fiction that the genesis of the Religious Right — the powerful evangelical political movement that has reshaped American politics over the past four decades — lay in opposition to abortion.

US Jewish community mobilizes to resettle Ukrainian refugees amid war

The administration of US President Joe Biden has launched a direct sponsorship program for Ukrainian refugees called Uniting for Ukraine, which will serve as a major piece of the president's pledge to accept up to 100,000 refugees in the United States. A new online portal started accepting applications, where individual Americans, as well as private and public organizations, can apply to financially sponsor a Ukrainian for travel from Europe.

Al-Jazeera journalist killed during IDF op. in Palestinian city of Jenin

IDF Spokesperson Brig.Gen. Ran Kohav later told Kan public broadcaster that he didn’t think Israeli forces killed her.

"I don't think we killed her. We offered the Palestinians to open a swift joint probe. If we indeed killed her, we'll take responsibility, but it doesn't seem to be the case,” Kohav said, adding that while the Palestinians “might have a good reason” not to cooperate on a joint investigation, “if they do, we’ll have better answers.”

Harvard faculty, alums denounce student newspaper for backing BDS

The Harvard Crimson’s recent endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement has attracted far more wide-ranging attention than a typical student paper’s editorial page, as faculty and alumni of the Ivy League institution have lined up to denounce the student paper’s op-ed and condemn the shift in Israel discussion on college campuses.

In an open letter, more than 100 Harvard faculty members objected to the paper endorsing an academic and financial boycott of the state of Israel, including the school’s former president Larry Summers; prominent psychologist and author Steven Pinker; endowed law professor Gabriella Blum; former Harvard Medical School dean Jeffrey Flier; and emeritus law professor and longtime pro-Israel advocate Alan Dershowitz.

“We believe that many well-meaning people with no hate in their hearts, including those at Harvard, gravitate to this movement believing that it offers a means for advancing Palestinian rights and peace in the Middle East,” the letter reads. “But the reality is that BDS merely coarsens the discourse on campus and contributes to antisemitism.”

Trump Jr. Defends Dad's Alleged Plan to Bomb Mexico: 'Is That a Bad Thing?'

Donald Trump Jr. is suggesting that his father's reported idea to launch missiles at Mexican drug labs wasn't such a bad idea.
Trump Jr. made the remarks on Twitter Friday following claims by former Defense Secretary Mark Esper that Trump brought up firing Patriot missiles into Mexico. Esper is the most recent Trump administration official to make headlines for claims about the former president's behavior. The tweet from Trump Jr. shows he continues to be one of his father's fiercest defenders.

"I'm still trying to figure out the recent media outrage about my father possibly wanting to target Mexican drug cartel manufacturing facilities in Mexico... Is that supposed to be a bad thing???" Trump Jr. wrote in a tweet.

Trump notches a loss in Nebraska as Herbster goes down in GOP gubernatorial primary: AP

According to the latest vote count, Herbster, a multimillionaire agricultural executive and state Sen. Brett Lindstrom, who enjoyed the support of moderate Republicans and cross-over Democrats, were battling for second place.

It is the first time a candidate endorsed by the former president in the 2022 Republican Party primaries has lost.

Earlier Tuesday evening, Trump scored a victory when the AP projected Rep. Alex Mooney the winner over Rep. David McKinley in the GOP primary in West Virginia’s 2nd Congressional District.

Open Letter to Schlesinger twins

 Mazel Tov on your bar mitzva

Don't know if you realize its wider implication - in Jewish law that means it is now your responsibility to keep the religious and ethical principles of Judaism

One of the most important of these being to honor and respect both your father and mother

You are in a very difficult position in this area. Never the less you are still obligated

As a minimum you need to ensure that your mother is invited to the bar mitzva

As a psychologist I will simply note that if you can't deal properly with this issue  it is very unlikely you will have a good marriage or be a good parent. Not a threat or curse - just a dose of reality

Daniel Eidensohn PhD.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Tamar Epstein's Heter: R Shalom Kaminetsky's letter asking for the heter and Rav Nota Greenblatt's teshuva giving the heter

 update: added transcript of Rav Greenblatt's psak

I received the letters of R Shalom Kaminetsky and Rav Greenblatt with permission to publish them. They are not the sharpest copies but ocr doesn't work.  There apparently are a number of different versions. Will publish the variations as I receive them.

I just received a set of letters from a different source today with full unconditional permission to publish them -  so I will be publishing them without the disclaimer required from the first person. The first person also said he could not send the letters from Rav Greenblatt while the second person could.

 It is clear from these letters that R Shalom Kaminetsky was shopping for a heter of mekach ta'os as requested by Tamar Epstein. It is also clear that Rav Greenblatt accepted without question what he was told were the facts of the case and he agreed to give a heter of mekach ta'os. There were no conditions - despite what Rav Greenblatt wrote last week in the letter I published (It is the last letter in this posting).

This letter of R Shalom Kaminetsky also makes an anonymous claim that Aharon was not only mentally ill but had threatened a girl that he had been engaged to before Tamar. Anyone who knows Aharon will realize the claim is a lie. He is not violent nor has he been violent. In all the years this divorce has been in beis din and courts and the public media - there has never been a claim that he is violent. They should have added that he steals candy from babies and throws old ladies down the steps for entertainment. The level that the Kaminetsky's and Tamar's allies stooped is really sickening.

Letters  of Rav Shalom Kaminetsky claiming Aharon is incurablely severely mentally ill and asking for a heter of mekach ta'os

Letters of Rav Nota Greenblatt accepting as fact what Rav Shalom Kaminetsky said and giving a heter for Tamar to remarry without a Get

Transcript of Rav Greenblatt's letter above
כ"ו תמוז תשע"ג

לכבוד הרב הגאון מגדולי מרביצי תורה מוהר"ר שלום קמנצקי שליט"א

ע"ד העגונה מרת תמר אסתר שתחי' שיושבת כן כה' שנים אחר שהרופאים החליטו שאין תרופה למחלת רוח של בעלה ומיד התחילה לעזבו ולעבור לבית אמה והבעל מסרב לתת לה גט עד עתה וכבוד אבי כת"ר הגאון שליט"א רוצה לדעת חות דעתי אם אפשר להתירה לינשא בלא גט משום דבודאי לא היתה מרוצה להתקדש לו אילו ידעה מזה.

הננני מסכים מצטרף להצטרף לעוד רבנים בעלי הוראה שיתירה. הרי רוב בעלי הוראה שבדורות האחרונים, שנשאו את אחריות ההוראה על שכמם, נזקקו לסברא של מקח טעות בכגון זה, וכמו שכת' כת"ר מכמה ספרי שו"ת כי קידושין כמו בכל קנינים בעינן דעת מקנה. האחד מגאוני ההוראה והוא מרן הגרי"א הנקין זצ"ל לא נזקק לביטול קידושין בשום מקרה וז"ל בספרו (פירושי איבר"א ס"א אות מ"ז) שהכל נכנסין לספק ונו' אפילו היה מבורר המום והצד השני לא ידע ממנו, וכתב עוד (וכן בעוד מקומות) צא ובדוק בש"ס רמב"ם וטוש"ע ולא תמצא בשום מקום למעשה ביטול קדושין משום מומין אפילו להצטרף לספק אחר יעו"ש, והנה חוץ מזה שלא מצינו אין ראי' שאין הדין כן, נ"ל שיש טעם לזה והוא דבזמנם כמעט לא היתה מציאות שכזו דהיינו למצוא מום אחר הנשואין שלא היה נראה מקודם שיוכל לבטל את הקידושין (אשר לאין לו גבורת אנשים ... הרבה פעמים מתרפא אחר זמן ואופן שלא שייך להתרפאות לא שכיח' ושלא כבזמננו וענינינו מחלות רוח שהרופאים מרפאים לכמה ויודעים למיני מחלות שאין להן תרופה כזו של הבעל - הנידון. חרי לא שייך שתדור עם נחש שמצער לה הרבה ובודאי לא חיתה נישאת לכזה.
והנה בחיי הגר"מ זצ"ל אירע כאן בעירי שאחד נשא אשה ושנה שנתים אח"כ חלתה האשה במחלת לב אנושה והבעל ברח ממנה, שהרופאים אמרו שהמחלה הזו היתה לה כבר כמה שנים אעפ"י שהיתה נראית בריאה ולא תוכל לחיות רק בניתוח מסוכן מאד מאד. בעזה"ש אחר הניתוח הוטב לה וחיתה כמה שנים. ומרן זצ"ל אמר לי שיש לדון משום מקח טעות דאין אדם שיתחתן למסוכנת שכזו, (אבל היו לו עוד צירופי היתר) ומקרה זה כגון בדידן לא שייך שיקרה בימים הקדמונים.

ה' יהיה בעזרה, שלא תשב בדד ושיהיה לח נחת רוח מבתה שתחי'.

והנני בזה דו"ש וכ"ת

נטע צבי גרינבלט


Letter from Rav Nota Greenblatt claiming the heter was only  theoretical and conditional
See post with translation and discussion of this letter