Sunday, March 31, 2024

U.S. and Israel’s ‘Unprecedented’ Intelligence Sharing Draws Criticism

The intelligence sharing with Israel is conducted under a secret memorandum that the White House issued shortly after Hamas’s Oct. 7 attack and amended a few days later, U.S. officials said. At about the same time, the U.S. expanded its intelligence collection on Gaza, having largely relied on Israel to spy on the enclave in recent years.

Donald Trump Warns Americans 'Won't Have a Country' If He Loses in November

Trump, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, weighed in on a variety of topics — including his likely rematch with Democratic rival President Joe Biden on November 5 — during an interview with Fox News host Brian Kilmeade that aired on Saturday night.

"The most important day in the history of our country is going to be November 5," Trump said. "Our country is going bad. And it's going to be changed on November 5, and if it's not changed we're not going to have a country anymore."

Steven Cheung, a spokesperson for Trump's campaign, doubled down on the former president's remarks, telling Newsweek in an email on Saturday night: "Without law and order and safety for all Americans, we won't have a country anymore."

Saturday, March 30, 2024

Israel should ignore Biden and finish the job in Rafah

Israel has committed to going into Rafah, and the United States should work to ensure the operation is a success. Biden claims his objections to the Rafah operation are humanitarian in nature. If that’s the case, we should be pressuring Egypt to open humanitarian corridors and temporary camps in the Sinai Peninsula, where Gazan civilians can relocate while military operations remain ongoing. 

Daas Torah Marriage Review

 Fascinating and Comprehensive

Reviewed in the United States on January 8, 2024

Verified Purchase

The topic is fascinating and the work is comprehensive. I enjoyed learning the topics from the sources. The book does not contain "questions" which the sources "answer" but are lumped by broad category. This is great because it is objective and allows the reader to decide for himself. However, it also makes answers hard to find.

For example, I wondered what the Torah view on whether Homosexuality is nature or nurture. I found nothing in the section on Homosexuality but in the section of differences between gender I found a reference to the mekubal the Rekanti that there is no gender swap between Gilgulim (if u were a women in a previous Gilgul u will be reincarnated as a women) and that if a soul were to be in a the wrong body gender it would be infertile. My inference is that according to the Rekanti, gender disphoria can be real but such a person would be infertile. If a fertile person claimed gender disphoria it would not be genuine.

Similarly, if one wanted to look up "spicier topics" such as unconventional sex (anything other than missionary), one would not easily come to a conclusion. Relevant headings are Somdomy, Pleasure, Zera Livatala, and Rabbi Friedeld.

Last example, I was hard pressed to find the Daas Torah on how to Foreplay. The best I found was in the section "Behavior with wife can be learned from animals" it cites a Talmud passage to arouse one's wife with promises of clothing even if there is no intent to fulfill.

One section I was dissatisfied with was Birth Control. I assume the author did not wish to navigate such murky waters or that very little has been actually published on the subject.

All in all, amazing buy and highly recommended.

Trump posts video with an image of a hog-tied Biden, drawing a rebuke from Democrat’s campaign

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump drew criticism Friday for posting a video on social media that contains the image of a hog-tied President Joe Biden painted on the tailgate of a passing truck.

Friday, March 29, 2024

Trump Needs His MAGA Followers to Believe America Is Screwed

MAGA (Make America Great Again) isn’t just a message on a red hat, it’s a mantra. And to acknowledge the ways America is currently great (and improving!) is to admit that the country does not, in fact, need a fulminating strongman like Trump to save us from the ashes of our once proud homeland.

As I have learned, saying something like “It’s great to be alive and in America right now” constitutes fighting words. That’s because Donald Trump needs his MAGA followers to believe America is screwed. The danger, of course, is that this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Sin of Golden Calf and Working

 Michtav M’Eliyahu (01 page 277) Both the Ibn Ezra and the Ramban believe that that the main sin with the Golden Calf was that they erred in descending from their high level to the level of nature even though this was done for pure motivation in that they wanted to remain in pure service of G-d according to their belief that Moses was no longer with them. This was the deception of the evil Inclination which encourages man to the apparent simplest course  to achieve a goal (for example a person mistakenly thinks that the withstanding of a test always leads to sanctifying G-d’s Name) – we have already explained that this was the basis of Adam’s sin i.e., descent for the purpose of ascent.  Repentance for this sin is difficult since it contains an aspect of sinning with intent to repent And the root of this sin are the sly tricks of the evil inclination to bring man down. It can be determined to be  evil since it mixes together lust and spirituality. As we see when Eve stated “that the tree is good to eat and is lust for the eyes and pleasing to the intellect. Just as a person masks his combining Torah with working

Foreign Ministry on ICJ ruling: Israel places no limitations on the aid which enters Gaza

“‎Israel will continue to promote new initiatives, and to expand existing ones, in order to enable and facilitate the flow of aid to the Gaza Strip in a continuous and extensive manner, by land, air, and sea, together with UN bodies and other partners in the international community. This includes ongoing efforts to increase the scale, and means of access for such aid despite the operational challenges on the ground and Hamas׳s active and abhorrent efforts to commandeer, hoard, and steal aid.”

Trump Goes After Judge Juan Merchan’s Daughter AGAIN—This Time By Name

Trump has been particularly fixated on the political work of Merchan’s daughter, suggesting her supposed political leanings are enough to influence how her dad treats him in a criminal trial.

“She works for Crooked Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Adam “Shifty” Schiff, and other Radical Leftists who Campaign on ‘Getting Trump,’” he said, adding that her work has created a “TOTAL Conflict.”

In his latest rant, Trump made no mention of social media posts he previously claimed were made by Merchan, however.

That’s likely because a representative for the New York state court system pointed out that the account Trump attributed to her in his initial rant against on Wednesday didn’t actually belong to her.

In surprise primary result, Lapid holds on to party leadership by a mere 29 votes

Opposition leader wins only 52 percent of vote in leadership contest he was expected to breeze through; thanks opponent Ram Ben Barak for ‘a fair race’

Smotrich vs. Sanctions: USA reduces sanctions against Judea and Samaria residents

The USA has significantly reduced the sanctions it imposed on residents of Judea and Samaria following Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich's threats of economic sanctions against Palestinian Authority banks.

US Warns Israel Against 'Enormous' Mistake in Gaza

The State Department on Wednesday again warned Israel about an offensive against the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, saying that an assault on the territory's frontier refuge would inflict "massive harm" on civilians and ultimately weaken Israeli security.

For months, U.S. officials have been warning against an Israeli attack on Rafah, which sits along Gaza's border with Egypt and has become the "last refuge" for more than 1 million Palestinians fleeing Israel's offensive against the devastated territory.

Washington wants Israel to conduct a more limited, targeted operation to root out the Hamas and other militant leaders and formations believed to be in Rafah, including their occupation of a network of tunnels underneath it. But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his war cabinet have repeatedly made clear they see a full assault as their only choice.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

X Account Trump Cited to Attack Judge’s Daughter Isn’t Even Hers, Court Rep Says

“Judge Juan Merchan, a very distinguished looking man, is nevertheless a true and certified Trump Hater who suffers from a very serious case of Trump Derangement Syndrome,” Trump posted online. “In other words, he hates me! His daughter is a senior executive at a Super Liberal Democrat firm that works for Adam ‘Shifty’ Schiff, the Democrat National Committee, (Dem) Senate Majority PAC, and even Crooked Joe Biden. He was recently the judge on an unrelated trial of a long term employee, elderly and not in good health. This judge treated him viciously, telling him either you cooperate or I’m putting you in jail for 15 years. He pled, and went to jail for very minor offenses, highly unusual, served 4 months in Rikers, and now they are after him again, this time for allegedly lying (doesn’t look like a lie to me!), and they threatened him again with 15 years if he doesn’t say something bad about ‘TRUMP.’ He is devastated and scared! These COUNTRY DESTROYING SCOUNDRELS & THUGS HAVE NO CASE AGAINST ME. WITCH HUNT!”

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Brothers testify in Lev Tahor kidnapping trial

A former Monsey resident who joined a fringe sect of ultra Orthodox Judaism and is accused of kidnapping two children to return them to the group in Guatemala testified at his federal trial that he was convinced the children were being abused so he needed to help free them.

Republicans Have an Internal Polling Problem

An analysis by The New York Times concluded that Republicans in 2022 were misled by "right-leaning pollsters using opaque methodology, in some cases relying on financial support from hyperpartisan groups and benefiting from vociferous cheerleading by Mr. Trump."

These impacted the polling averages calculated by groups like RealClearPolitics exaggerating the GOP's position.

The New York Times said: "The skewed red-wave surveys polluted polling averages, which are relied upon by campaigns, donors, voters and the news media.

Yeshiva Education was not meant for the welfare of Everybody

 Michtav M’Eliyahu (03 page 356) The main problem is the difference between the education system of Frankfurt and the education system of the Yeshiva World . Frankfurt - allowed science and included studying at the university as being acceptable as being their guiding principle in education. The price they paid for this was that the number of Torah greats that they produced was even of those who studied Torah in the Yeshivas of Lithuania and Poilin and science in Ashkenaz, only a very few of them became great scholars. While it is true Frankfurt had very few who left religion, the purity of their views regarding the absolute truth of the Torah system. instead of being contradicted by science, their view of Torah became subtlely  distorted by belng a strange partnership with it as if it were possible to combine inherently contradictory ideas in one heart. Nevertheless almost all remained mitzvos observers with great devotion while some achieved the highest level of observance.   In contrast the goal of the yeshiva was not quantitative but focused on quality by producing  a few gedolim and comsequently they prohibited  their students from attending universities since this was viewed as undermining the possibility of becoming a godol.  Don’t think that they were not fully aware that this elitist goal would not destroy the religious observance of many of the students of the yeshivos who would not survive this extreme environment. But they were willing to pay the price to obtain gedolim. Obviously they tried hard to prevent the damage to those who would not become gedolim as long as it did not impact the others. For those who had to leave the yeshivas, it was conditional on getting only menial low status jobs such as being clerks in stores that don’t require special training or degrees and thus they would not be devoted to these occupations. Anyone wanting a good job or academic training was rejected so as to not harm the other students.I heard that they found support for such an approach by the statement found in Vayikra Rabba (2:10), One thousand students enter to study Bible and only one comes out as a posek and G-d says “that is the one I desire.” They also mentioned the words of the Rambam in Moreh Nevuchim, “It is better that 1000 fools die in order to obtain one Torah scholar.”

[Rav Sternbuch told me to append a note to this letter of Rav Dessler’s letter. He said that the halacha is clear that it is not allowed to produce gedolim if it causes others to stop being observant. He said that Rav Dessler doesn’t mean that it is certain that people will go off the derech because of this approach – but only that it can happen. In addition that going off the derech here refers to a possiblity of losing the yeshiva standard of observance  - not giving up religious observance entirely.]

Newsmax got funding from Qatari royal family during Trump administration: WaPo

Newsmax, the conservative cable news channel touted by former President Trump and his allies, received funding from a member of the Qatari royal family during Trump’s years in the White House, according to a new report.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that a member of the Qatari royal family invested roughly $50 million in Newsmax in 2019 and 2020, citing documents and representatives for the media company and the royal.

Blaming UN vote, Israel pulls negotiators from Qatar after Hamas rejects truce deal

Israel on Tuesday recalled its negotiating team from Qatar after Hamas rejected its latest offer in talks on a hostage deal and truce, an Israeli official told The Times of Israel.

The delegation had been in Doha for eight days.

However, several news outlets reported that a small Mossad team remained in Qatar to continue talks. The Prime Minister’s Office would not comment on the reports. Majed al-Ansari, a spokesperson for Qatar’s Foreign Ministry, told reporters that negotiations on a truce in Gaza were still ongoing, without providing details.

In a statement, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said Hamas’s decision to reject a US-brokered compromise is “clear proof it is not interested in continuing talks, and a sad testament to the damage caused by the UN Security Council resolution,” referring to a call for a ceasefire passed Monday night that the US did not veto, thus enabling its passage.

Michael Oren: Trump unclear on Israel; Biden is supportive

Trump also hates Netanyahu and does not forgive him for congratulating Biden when he was elected. He also criticizes us. There is no pro-Israeli option here. I don't know, and neither does he, what his policy will be."

Regarding Biden, Oren said: "Really, compared to other people, there's [not a lot bad to say about him], he pays a price for helping us. Decisions were made to force a ceasefire on us and Biden vetoed it, he saved us."

The Utter Ridiculousness of ‘Trump Bibles’

Hence, he’s selling the “God Bless The USA” Bible—a reference to the Lee Greenwood song of the same name—for $59.99 a pop (plus shipping and handling). For those wondering why the price point is so high, a site dedicated solely to selling the books notes that it’s “the only Bible endorsed by President Trump.” Not like those other worthless Bibles that aren’t endorsed by Trump.

Israeli woman who was held hostage by Hamas speaks out on her abduction and sexual assault in Gaza

Amit Soussana has become the first Israeli woman to speak publicly about enduring what she says was a sexual assault and other forms of violence during her 55 days in captivity following the Hamas-led attack on Israel on October 7, according to reporting by The New York Times on Tuesday.

Suspended government spokesman Eylon Levy dismissed from his position

A week after being suspended, the government's spokesman Eylon Levi is dismissed from his position, N12 reported on Tuesday evening. The government's office gave a list of reasons.

Hamas Hails Biden's 'Clear Changes' on Israel Policy

Asenior Hamas official has told Newsweek that the Palestinian movement has identified shift in the United States' position toward Israel after Washington declined to back its ally's stance at the United Nations, a change the group believes is due to pressure being felt by President Joe Biden from at home and abroad.

NBC Drops Ronna McDaniel as Host

Former Republican National Committee (RNC) chairwoman Ronna McDaniel has been dropped by NBC News after fierce backlash from several prominent on-air personalities.

The network reversed its hiring decision on Tuesday after MSNBC hosts including Rachel Maddow, Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, Lawrence O'Donnell and Nicolle Wallace all voiced their strong disapproval of the hiring within days of it being announced.

McDaniel was hired on Friday to provide political analysis on MSNBC and NBC as the November presidential election approaches. She left her position at the RNC earlier this month following a request for new leadership from former President Donald Trump.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

'South Africa came to attack Israel': Anti-Israel proposals defeated at IPU

Israel's delegation at the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) annual conference on Monday was able to put a stop to two proposals that condemned Israel's actions in the war against Hamas and called for an immediate ceasefire, a Monday release from Likud MK Danny Danon's office reported. 

Steven Spielberg warns: 'Jews may again have to fight for right to be Jewish'

In an interview with Fox News, he commented on the growing antisemitism in the world. “I find it very, very surprising because antisemitism has always been there. It’s either been just around the corner and slightly out of sight but always lurking, or it has been much more overt, like Germany in the 30s,” he said. “But not since Germany in the 30s have I witnessed antisemitism no longer lurking but standing proud with hands on hips like Hitler and Mussolini.

Everything is a Miracle

 Ramban (Toras HaShem Temima) And when we take a good look, we see that a person has no part in the Torah of Moses until he believes that all our words and actions are miracles  there is no worldly nature in them. That is because the essence of the Torah is complete miracles and wonders, because there is no difference for those who take a good look between a righteous man who lived eighty years quietly and safely and without illness, ... and between the splitting of the Red Sea. …The general rule is everything in the Torah are either miracles or potential miracles and that is why G-d specifies them in the Torah. ..For example, , no man knew that the deliverance of so-and-so from an illness was from charity he gave, and the death of a healthy person was due to eating prohibited fat, but both are equivalent. That is why astonishment was expressed regarding the Rambam because he is always minimizing miracles and emphasizing the natural. He also claimed that miracles are only temporary aberrations when in fact they are permanent – as he himself admitted in his  Letter on Resurrection of the Dead. 

Rabbeinu Bachya (Shemos 30:12) In fact it is axiomatic to remember that a person is not a true believer, i.e. does not really have a share in Moses’ Torah unless he is absolutely convinced of the fact that G-d performs such hidden miracles all the time, that there is no accident and no coincidence in the universe. G-d is aware of all that occurs and has had a hand in it 

Sefer HaChinuch (132) The thing is known amongst us and among every sage that the great miracles that God does for people in His great goodness, He always does hiddenly. And these matters appear a little as if they were truly done by way of nature, or close to nature. 

Palm reading

 Rav Sternbuch (1:454) It seems that there is no prohibition to ask and investigate with a palm reader. In fact  there is a basis in Zohar (Yisro) which states 'and you will see' that in the human body in the palm of his hand that there are hints to his status and luck. Nevertheless he must be fully aware that for Jews everything depends on prayer and good deeds. In addition these non Jewish palm readers their knowledge is not clear and certain in what they see from the palm and they mix truth with falsehoods. It is best not to ask them anything but rather to rely on G-d regarding the future. Through many prayers and giving charity and other good deeds He will have mercy on us in this World regarding children lifespan and parnossa and we should merit the World to Come. 

Is This What True Friendship With Israel Looks Like, America?

By abstaining rather than an explicit veto, the U.S. allowed the Security Council to put Israel in the defendant's docket, alongside Hamas. It's an astounding degree of moral equivalency between an Iran-backed terrorist organization and the democratically elected government of the State of Israel.

Or, as Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan put it, "It was the Hamas massacre that started this war... Nearly six months has passed, and the Security Council still has not condemned the child-murdering rapists that started this war. The resolution just voted upon makes it seem as if the war started by itself... Israel did not start this war, nor did Israel want this war."

Unrealitic belief in being Safe

Making of a Godol (page 365)

 This author came across another instance of blind faith in the safety of Torah sites during times of war in another episode conveyed by Hayyah-Miriam Shulman. She related that her father, R' Isaac Scher, and R' Moshe-Mordkhai Epstein did not believe World War I would erupt because they "could not picture the dismantling  of the essence of holiness  that the Slabodka yeshiva represented

UN Security Council resolution will only harden Hamas stance in hostage talks, envoy says

Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan on Monday night slammed the UN Security Council's call for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza during the month of Ramadan.

“Although the American ambassador said they see it as contingent upon the release of hostages, it is no coincidence that Hamas welcomed this and the Palestinians celebrated,” he said in an interview with Ynet.

PM calls off delegation to Washington after US abstains on UNSC resolution

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled Monday a planned trip to Washington by his senior aides Ron Dermer and Tzachi Hanegbi after the United States abstained in a United Nations Security Council ceasefire resolution that was passed.

The UNSC demanded a ceasefire in Gaza during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, its first demand to halt fighting.

Trump’s Weird Israel Rant: ‘You Shouldn't Be Doing That’ 

Days after claiming Jewish Democrats who criticize Israel “hate” the country and hate “their religion,” Donald Trump went on a confusing rant in which he both criticized Israeli military actions in Gaza as a “big mistake” and indicated he would have responded similarly to the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attacks.

Biden Abstains on Israel and Hamas

The U.S. withheld its veto and abstained as the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution that demanded a cease-fire in Gaza but didn’t make the cease-fire contingent on Hamas releasing its 134 hostages. That condition, on which the U.S. had previously insisted, has been dropped.

Perplexed by ‘overreaction,’ White House says PM stirring crisis in US-Israel ties

The White House suggested on Monday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trying to manufacture a crisis in US-Israel ties after he canceled plans to send an Israeli delegation to Washington over the Biden administration’s decision to allow the adoption of a UN Security Council resolution calling for an immediate Gaza ceasefire and hostage release.

Netanyahu said the US abstention marked a divergence from Washington’s policy linking a ceasefire to Hamas releasing the hostages it abducted on October 7, but US officials asserted that this wasn’t their interpretation of the resolution and that their position in favor of that conditionality has not changed.

“It seems like the Prime Minister’s Office is choosing to create a perception of daylight here when they don’t need to do that,” White House National Security Council John Kirby said in a press briefing.

Can Gedolim err?

An opinion of our Sages teaches that the evil decree in the Purim story came when the Jews of Shushan attended the feast of Achashverus which celebrated his false understanding that the Jews would not return to Eretz Yisrael to build the Beit Hamikdash. Apparently, Mordechai was the only Jew who protested. He begged the Jews not to participate, but they were happy to attend, insisting that the food and drink would be glatt kosher.

The cause for the celebration – the belief that the Jews were freed of the obligation to return to the Land of Israel and to rebuild the Beit HaMikdash did not seem to bother anyone save Mordechai. There is no record that the other great Rabbis of the time, of which there were many, supported Mordechai’s vehement protest. Perhaps they dd and perhaps they erred and attended the gala party which celebrated the disconnection from Eretz Yisrael and an open door to acceptance amongst the Gentiles and assimilation, believing it would cement good relations with the powers that be.

Golders Green rabbi Chaim Halpern charged with sexual assault

Golders Green rabbi Chaim Halpern has been charged with two counts of sexual assault of a woman after a police investigation.

Police launched inquries after the unnamed woman alleged in a broadcast interview in December 2022 that she had been a victim of sexual offences in London.

Halpern, who is 65, was arrested in March last year in connection with the incident which allegedly took place on June 1 2022 and a file submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service last December.

He has been bailed to appear at Willesden Magistrates Court on April 19.

Monday, March 25, 2024


Anti-Semitism on the right and the left threatens to bring to a close an unprecedented period of safety and prosperity for Jewish Americans—and demolish the liberal order they helped establish.

Preaching to the Choir

 Everybody knows about the dybbuk and the Chofetz Chain. Rav Elchonon Wasserman used to tell the story at the Purim Seudah, But he said only those who believe in these things should be invited.

In other words these stories are meant as spiritual chizuk not as a means of convincing anyone about spirituality. In Making of a Godol (page 363-354) he also notes that his father was against telling spooky tales even about the Golem as it convinces some that Judaism is full of bizarre superstitions The above probably is true of Agada medrash and chassidic miracle stories

Lies exposed | Fmr. Al Jazeera director says rape allegations against IDF false

Yasser Abu Hilala says the woman who alleged in an interview that IDF soldiers raped women in Shifa Hospital admitted that she fabricated the story to incite fury.

Hamas, Al Jazeera admit: Story of IDF rapes in Gaza hospital fabricated

After more than 24 hours of letting the story run freely, Qatari mouthpiece Al Jazeera deleted the page featuring their former story, which accused Israeli soldiers of allegedly perpetrating rape against women during the IDF’s latest excursion against Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists who barricaded themselves inside the former hospital-cum-terror headquarters at Shifa Hospital.

Though the Qatari mouthpiece hasn’t yet officially referred to the retraction, all content related to the allegation has been reportedly deleted.

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Fani Willis warns ‘train is coming’ in Trump Georgia case

All while that was going on, we were writing responsive briefs, we were still doing the case in a way that it needed to be done,” she told CNN on Saturday. “I don’t feel like we’ve been slowed down at all.”

“I do think there are efforts to slow down this train, but the train is coming,” Willis continued.

Trump Defenders Dismiss All His Legal Problems As ‘Lawfare’

The niftiest thing about the “lawfare” argument is that it can obliterate any willingness to look at the cases involving Trump in terms of their merits. Hush-money payments, defamation about a sexual assault, shady business practices, trying to overturn an election … no matter what the former president might have done, it’s all washed away by the malice of his enemies. The Washington Examiner’s veteran reporter Byron York, once a sober analyst of political developments, exemplifies the sweeping immunity afforded Trump by Republicans under the rubric of fighting “lawfare”:

Grenades, RPGs, mortar shells found in UNRWA bags in Khan Yunis

During scans of a residential building, soldiers of the Armored Corps located explosive charges, grenades, RPG missiles, and mortar shells. The weapons were found hidden in UNRWA bags.

Saturday, March 23, 2024

Amulets - Protesting Against

 Melamed Lhoil(2 63:1) Question: Should objections be raised against those who hang tablets in the room of a new mother which contain oaths and there is concern for the prohibition against magic (darchei Emori). Answer: It is an established practice to make various kamiyas (amulets or charms) [See ShulchanAruch (YD 179 OH 25 and 334:14] And even for those who don’t believe in them and similar practices it can still bring benefit since it comforts those who do believe in them and helps them recover. Therefore you should not object if this is done. Furtermore we have a rule that all things done for cure are not considered magic (darchei Emorei Shabbos 68a)

Sins of gedolim and Amalek

 Rav Tzadok has an interesting explanation of the mitzva of remembering Amalek

He notes the apparent strange condition that it applies after you no longer fear your enemies

He explains that Amalek is the Yetzer Harah and once you reach a very high level you think you are free. 

That is when you need to be extra careful and he cites the gemora where a number of gedolim -e,g., Rabbi Meir and Rabbi Akiva ridiculed those who sinned and as a result Satan would have gotten them to sin except for the special protection they had from G-d


A similar drasha is found in the sefer Daas Torah by the mashgiach of Mir.

He notes the statement in the medrash that only a hair's width separates Gan Eden from Gehinnom. And thus even after reaching a high level you need to not be lulled in feeling you are out of reach of sinning as we see from the constant fear of the Avos

Pro-Palestinian nurses eject Jewish boy from hospital bed, UK trust to probe

A British National Health Service (NHS) Trust is investigating allegations that nurses, while brandishing pro-Palestinian stickers on their uniform, forcibly ejected a nine-year-old Jewish boy with a blood disease from his bed, according to multiple media reports from Friday.

The boy, who was being treated at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, was allegedly “kicked out of his bay,” according to the boy’s Israeli-British uncle, Elliott Smus.

U.S. Warned Russia Before Moscow Attack That Killed at Least 60 

The U.S. passed a secret warning to Russia earlier this month of a plot to target large crowds ahead of an attack that killed at least 60 people and injured over 145 at a concert hall outside of Moscow, according to U.S. officials.

Explosions rocked the site and gunmen opened fire on concertgoers Friday evening, Russian authorities said, less than a week after Vladimir Putin was elected for a sixth term as the country’s president.

U.S. officials said they believed Islamic State was responsible for the attack. The group claimed responsibility in a statement issued by the Islamic State-affiliated news agency Amaq on Telegram, without providing evidence.

On March 7, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow issued a cryptic warning to American citizens to avoid concert venues. The U.S. had information about a planned terrorist attack in Moscow potentially targeting large gatherings—including concerts—which prompted the State Department to issue a public advisory, White House National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said in a statement Friday night. “The U.S. government also shared this information with Russian authorities in accordance with its longstanding ‘duty to warn’ policy,” Watson added.

Four Moscow Massacre Suspects Caught Fleeing to Ukraine, Russia Claims

While the terror group ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack—a claim the U.S. has called “credible”—the FSB alleged that “after the terrorist attack, the criminals tried to escape by car towards the Russian-Ukrainian border.” Kyiv has denied any involvement in the attack.

Friday, March 22, 2024

Suspended spokesman Eylon Levy will continue fighting the media war

Levy rattled off a long list of contributors that included not only people in the Directorate for Public Diplomacy, but also Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Isaac Herzog, the Army Spokesman’s Office, the Police Spokesman’s Office, and many others.

Israel is currently doing a much better job in putting out information than during any previous war, said Levy.Even so, he conceded, “It’s a war of David and Goliath. It’s not an easy war.”

In the early days of the conflict, Levy recalled, the BBC, Fox and Sky News interrupted regular broadcasts to cover Israeli press conferences. That is seldom the case today.

Among the difficulties that have confronted Hoffman and Levy are proving that statements emanating from UNRWA, the World Health Organization and even from the Red Cross, are misleading.

Love Work

 Magen Avos (01:10) Love work. In this way the world will exist and His Torah will be fulfilled because if he does not have a job he will have to be a dependent on others  and come to be a thief. And they said in Yerushalmi, (01 Peah) Choose life  refers to a profession they also said in the Midrash Koheles, See life with the woman you love, acquire a profession with the Torah you love, and they also said in Kiddushin (Chap 01) anyone who does not teach his son a profession is in effect teaching him to be a thief. In Bava Metzia it said and you told them the way they should walk, this is the house of their lives, that is, to teach them a profession to earn a living from it, and this is a mitzvah from the Torah and even if he has sources of wealth he should still work since the Torah says for six days you should work since idleness causes mental illness. There are many statements in the gemora praising those who work. 

Overcharging is prohibited only to Jews

 Maharal Baer HaGolah 07) And also what was said in the tractate of Baba Metziya, that overcharging a non Jew is permissible, as in the text "And no man shall give to his fellow," because this means that when a person sells something to his friend and it is found that he gave it to his friend in exchange for something that must be returned to him, even if the seller himself did not know at the time of the sale, this is an extreme position which is not found in the law of the nations, and the Torah is stricter, and but only if he is his fellow in the Torah and mitzvos 

Honesty in Business

 Menoras HaMeor (08) The greed of men and their pursuit of the pleasures of the world causes them to oppress their fellows in all their business, and in their work and in their goods. And perhaps they think that this oppression, since it is not theft  is not prohibited therefore the Torah warns us  by saying, "No one should oppress his brother", to teach us that a person must conduct business honestly, even though everyone who engages in business has no intention but to profit from it Nevertheless  the Torah commands that he neither take nor sell for more or less than its worth

Genetically Modified Pig Kidney Is Transplanted Into Living Patient

 Genetically Modified Pig Kidney Is Transplanted Into Living Patient

A 62-year-old man suffering from end-stage kidney disease received a genetically modified pig kidney in an unprecedented transplant at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, a step forward in the effort to help people waiting for organs.

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Comer Keeps Stepping In It as Impeachment Witness Dishes Dirt on Giuliani

Committee chair Rep. James Comer (R-KY) stepped on rake after rake during the hearing, consistently undermining his own conference’s case. Star witness Lev Parnas was largely responsible for disseminating the mistruths about Biden to Republican lawmakers, working with the ex-New York City mayor-turned-Trump crony to dig up damaging dirt in advance of the 2020 presidential election. The two traveled to Ukraine for the job, and came back with eye-popping tales of corruption involving Biden and his son Hunter.

But on Wednesday, Parnas said, “The only information ever pushed on the Bidens and Ukraine has come from one source and one source only: Russia and Russian agents.”

Was America Safer Under Donald Trump Than Joe Biden?

President Joe Biden this week touted a "record decrease in crime" after the FBI released its quarterly crime data, sparking criticism from Donald Trump's campaign as he seeks to quell concerns about crime ahead of the November presidential election.

The FBI crime data released on Tuesday showed a drop in nearly every type of crime from the fourth quarter of 2022 to 2023, a victory touted by the White House, which attributed the decline to legislation signed into law by Biden, such as the American Rescue Plan.

Diaspora Jews rally around Eylon Levy, demand his reinstatement

The group We Are Tov (the Hebrew word for good) launched a petition on Wednesday, calling for the reinstatement of the suspended Government Spokesperson Eylon Levy. 

The petition, made on, has a goal of 10,000 signatories and has already accumulated over 8,000. 

We Are Tov, addressing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office, wrote, “We, the undersigned, urge the Prime Minister's Office to lift the suspension imposed on Eylon Levy, the Israeli Government's spokesman. 

Hostage families blast plans for first Jerusalem Purim parade in 40 years

However, the Jerusalem Municipality defended its decision, arguing that this year’s Purim parade would reflect the mood of a nation at war:

“The decision to hold the Adloyada was made with understanding and sensitivity to public discourse, especially the feelings of the families of the hostages, fallen and wounded. Unlike routine Adloyada parades, this event will reflect the current spirit and period. The Adloyada represents the legacy of the fallen, including many from Jerusalem who, in their bravery, instructed us to continue living our lives, which entail both sorrow and joy.

“The event will be dedicated to children, showcasing the courage of our military personnel, evacuees and heroes of the Gaza enclave, while raising awareness about the plight of the hostages."

Fox, Newsmax Losing Patience With GOP’s Biden Hearings

Wednesday’s hearing included testimony from Lev Parnas, a former associate of Rudy Giuliani, who said Republicans’ impeachment push is “predicated on a bunch of false information that is being spread by the Kremlin.”

“Eventually you’ve brainwashed yourself [in]to believing certain things that are not true,” Parnas said of his work with the longtime Trump ally ahead of the 2020 election. “I started thinking [to] myself that this can’t be true. And we were doing something wrong.”

Last month, one of the GOP’s key impeachment witnesses—who said he has ties to Russian intelligence assets—was arrested by the FBI for allegedly lying to the bureau about Biden and his son, Hunter. Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-KY) then tried to claim—despite his past comments—that Alexander Smirnov actually “wasn’t an important part” of his investigation.

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Trump Claims 2024 Will Be Rigged, Putting Republican Turnout at Risk

After making years of unfounded claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from him, Donald Trump is dialing up warnings that there could be an even bigger theft this time around, a tactic that threatens to complicate Republican turnout efforts.

“Too Big to Rig.” That is the phrase Trump began unveiling in recent weeks, including in an appearance in Greensboro, N.C. His campaign also has printed signs with the slogan to hand out to supporters. The idea behind the pitch is this: Trump needs a lead so large that no one can take it away.

“We want a landslide,” Trump said at the rally. “We have to win so that it’s too big to rig.”

The line has garnered energetic applause from the Trump faithful, but it presents messaging challenges for Republicans. Even as the former president says the voting process could be rigged, he is urging GOP supporters to participate in it anyway. Trump also needs to woo moderate and swing voters, yet they could be turned off by his drumbeat of election-fraud claims.

Rabbi Eliyahu on war against sexual abuse: ‘Do not be ashamed, this is a holy mission,”

Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, Chief Rabbi of Tzfat (Safed) and head of the Rabbinical Court for the Prevention of Sexual Harassment in the Haredi-Religious Sector, spoke at a meeting of the Knesset Lobby for the Prevention of Sexual Abuse on the importance of dealing with and fighting sexual offenders.

"I didn't choose to deal with this story of sexual abuse," he shared. "We stumbled upon this, because of the Ezra Sheinberg case, and since then I've seen that it's really a matter of ‘saving lives.’ There is no other way to describe it."

How dangerous is vaping, what is the disposable vape ban and what is the vaping tax?

Is vaping dangerous?

Vaping is nowhere near as harmful as smoking cigarettes.

But health experts agree that anyone who doesn't smoke should not start vaping.

Children's doctors say vaping may cause long-term damage to young people's lungs, hearts and brains.

The vapour inhaled contains a small amount of chemicals, including the addictive substance nicotine.

More research is needed to fully understand the health effects.

Another issue is that illegal vapes are widely available and are much more likely to contain harmful chemicals or drugs, such as cannabis.

Never start vaping, says girl with lung damage

Vaping and yeshiva world

The rosh yeshivah shook his head and said, “There have been a lot of cases of this with tall, skinny vapers in Lakewood this year.”

When we heard what Mordy’s rosh yeshivah had said, my husband and I were devastated. If this is such a pervasive problem, why aren’t we doing more to stop it? How did we get to a place where our son, who had been “harmlessly” vaping for the past four years, would end up in the ER with a collapsed lung? But even worse were other questions: Would Levi get it? How addicted was he? While everyone around him vapes constantly, how will he be able to handle that pressure and stay away?

English-language spokesman Eylon Levy said suspended after angering the UK

Levy was since suspended and has been at home for more than a week, the report says, noting that he was unlikely to return.

News of his suspension comes on the same day that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu bemoaned the fact that Israel had a dearth of spokespeople who could “string two words together” in English.

It also comes following reports earlier in the year that the prime minister’s wife, Sara Netanyahu, was reportedly seeking to have Levy fired over past criticism of the premier, as well as over his participation in protests against the judicial overhaul over the course of last year.

Dozens jailed in France's largest cyberbully case

Twenty-eight people have been jailed for up to 18 months for the harassment of an influencer in France's largest cyberbullying case to date.

Judges found the accused guilty of harassing Magali Berdah, spurred on by a campaign by the French rapper Booba against "thieving influencers".

The court in Paris heard that the harassment had "real consequences" to Ms Berdah's mental health.

Booba is facing a separate trail and denies aggravated harassment.

Trump just showed his endorsement power again. And his weaknesses.

A number of Democratic incumbents in Illinois were challenged specifically for their positions on the Israel-Hamas war— and all survived easily, despite polls showing Democrats have become less comfortable with supporting Israel in the months since Hamas’ attack.

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Biden Apologizes for Saying Black Voters ‘Ain’t Black’ if They’re Considering Trump

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, apologized Friday afternoon for telling a radio host that black voters torn between voting for him and President Trump “ain’t black,” remarks that ignited a firestorm online.

The remark sparked immediate pushback on social media, with liberal activists and conservatives alike jumping on Mr. Biden, 77, for acting as the arbiter of blackness. His words also exposed wounds among Democrats that date to 2016, when many leaders felt the party took black voters for granted.

Canada to stop arms exports to Israel

Canada will end arms exports to Israel, Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly told the Toronto Star today (Tuesday).

"It is a real thing," Joly said.

The announcement follows the approval by Canada’s parliament on Monday of a motion submitted by the New Democratic Party (NDP) on Palestinian statehood. The motion included calls for an immediate ceasefire to end Israel's military operations in Gaza and to end arms sales to Israel.

The motion was non-binding. Nevertheless, the Trudeau government intends to comply with it. When asked if the measures in the motion should now be considered the government's official position, Joly said it is "clearly the intent of this government."

Divination - when Permissible?

 Chullin (95b) An omen which is not after the form pronounced by Eliezer, Abraham's servant, or by Jonathan the son of Saul, is not considered a divination!

Malbim (Vayikra 19:26) And in what is written in Chulin (95), that every divination which isn’t like that of Eliezer is not prohibited., there is a dispute between the Rambam and the Ravad, and in my opinion also with the Rambam and those who say that the divination of Eliezer and Yonasan were prohibited actions. In fact they were not prohibited actions because they ascribed success to G-d’s providence. Since they knew G-d was with them in this matter they set a sign that G-d would notify them what to do or not to do.  There are a number of similar events described in the gemora and Zohar in which they relied on a sign from G-d and thus they are not prohibited as darchei Emori.

Shoftim (06:36-37) 36. And Gideon said to God, If you will save Israel by my hand, as you have said, 37. Behold, I will put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; and if the dew is on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground elsewhere, then shall I know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you have said.

Netziv (Devarim 18:14): According to our explanation of Temimos as feeling completely secure and not worrying, why does the Torah recommend that one should be temimos and not go to astrologers but yet should consult instead the prophets about the future? The answer is that in general a person’s conduct in this world should be with simple trust in G-d  and not to investigate the future - …. Nevertheless at a time of war when it is not clear what to do and it is a life threatening situations one must search to know what to do. … However it is obvious that at a time when there is no prophet it is necessary to use divination techniques….However not everything that an individual wants to know can he receive answers from a prophet. We see even for Moshe Rabbeinu (Moed Koton 16) that he only learned of the negative comments of Dasan and Aviram because of the messenger but not from his powers of prophecy. So surely this limitation on knowledge is true of other prophets. … .In contrast there is no such limitation for magic and divination which is the result of hidden natural processes and when someone uses them to know that which he needs he is merely using these natural processes which were produced by G-d .

Ohr HaChaim (Devarim 18:14): Jews were given prophets so that they would not be in an inferior to non Jews in terms of knowing the future. Perhaps that was Shaul’s understanding when he made inquiries of a diviner (Shmuel I 28:7) because G-d  did not prohibit using diviners except when there are prophets. However when there are no prophets and there is a need to know diviners can be consulted.

Derashas HaRan (12:16) And if one would ask: if one is forbidden to resort to these signs and is called an augurer if he does so, how are we to understand (Chullin 95b): "Rav would test propitiousness by means of a ferry" if it came towards him, he would see it as a propitious sign. What difference is there between a ferry and a deer crossing one's path? — the answer is: though Rav tested propitiousness by means of a ferry, he did not make his future action entirely dependent upon the result of that test, but only sought some indication of whether he would meet with success; and even if the sign was that he would not, he would not, because of this, abandon his undertaking, knowing as he did that the Blessed One can change everything according to His will. Augury is forbidden only to him who relies upon it implicitly, as is made clear there (Ibid): "And even so [even though the meat in question had been under constant surveillance], Rav did not eat of that meat. Why not, if it had been under constant surveillance? It must be because he had unlawfully resorted to augury and therefore banned to himself the fruits, as it were, of that augury. But did not Rav himself say that any augurer who is not like Eliezer the servant of Abraham and Jonathan the son of Saul is not an augurer?" That is: if he does not rely implicitly upon his augury as did Eliezer the servant of Abraham, who said (Genesis 24:14): "And it will be that maiden to whom I say: 'Hand down your pitcher that I may drink' — and who answers: 'Drink, and I will also give your camels to drink' — she is the one whom You have designated for your servant Isaac," and as Jonathan the son of Saul, who said (I Samuel 14:10): "And if they say thus: 'Come up to us' — then we shall go up, for the L-rd has given them into our hand" — if one does not rely implicitly upon his augury as these did, then he is not considered an augurer. And Rav did not rely implicitly upon his augury but only said: "A ferry is coming towards me — it is a good day for wayfarers." He did not say that if a ferry came towards him he would go, and that if it did not, he would not. 

Shemuel (1 14:08-10) 8. Then said Jonathan, Behold, we will pass over to these men, and we will reveal ourselves to them.9. If they say thus to us, Remain until we come to you; then we will stand still in our place, and will not go up to them.10. But if they say thus, Come up to us; then we will go up; for the Lord has delivered them into our hand; and this shall be a sign to us.

See Rav Sternbuch (1:454) תשובות והנהגות (חלק א' סי' תנד) מפורש בכתוב (דברים יח יג) 'תמים תהיה עם ד' אלקוך', ובפירש"י שם 'התהלך עמו בתמימות ולא תחקור אחר העתידות, ואמנם נראה דיסוד האיסור הוא רק כשתולה עתידו בדבר אחר וכדאיתא בפסחים (קיג:) 'מנין שאין שואלין בכלדאים (חוזי כוכבים) שנאמר 'תמים תהיה עם ד' אלוקיך', וכ"ה בשו"ע יו"ד סי' קע"ט אין שואלין בחוזים בכוכבים ולא בגורלות [וכ' ברמ"א] משום שנאמר תמים תהיה עם ד' אלוקיך ומשמע שהאיסור דוקא כשתולה עתידו בזה ולא בעצם החקירה אחר העתידות, וא"ש לשון הרמ"א באו"ח סי' תרס"ד שכתב 'ואינו ראוי לדרוש ולחקור אחר העתידות כלל, ומשמע שאינו איסור תורה אלא הוא בגדר אינו ראוי וכ"ה בספר חסידים תר"ה דמשמע שם שאינו איסור גמור ורק שומר נפשו ירחק מזה ע"ש. ועיין בהרמב"ן בהשגות לסה"מ עשה ח' שמנה עשה זו דתמים תהיה ביארה וז"ל, 'וענין הצוואה שנייחד לבבנו אילו לבדו יתברך ושנאמין שהוא לבדו עושה הכל וכו', וממנו לבדו נדרוש הבאות מנביאיו או מאנשי חסידיו ר"ל אורים ותומים ולא נבטח מהוברי שמים ולא מזולתם ולא נבטח שיביואו דבריהם עכ"פ אבל אם נשמע דבר מהם נאמר הכל בידי שמים כי הוא משנה מערכת הכוכבים והמזלות כרצונו, ונאמין כשל הבאות תהיינה אלינו כפי התקרבותינו לעבודתו יתברך, ע"ש. ונראה דכל האיסור לבטוח בהם אבל כשינו בוטח בהם אלא רוצה לידע מזלו כדי להתחזק בתשובה ומעש"ט, אינו אסור מן הדין אך מ"מ אין ראוי לעסוק בזה וכמו שביארנו. ועיין ירושלמי שבת (פ"ו ה"ט), שכל המנחש סופו לבא עליו שנא' כי לא נחש ביעקב, קרי לו נחש ומי גרם לו שינצל לפי שבטח בקב"ה, וע"ע נמוק"י סנהדרין סוף פרק ז' ושו"ת הרמב"ן סי' רפ"ב. 

וכן במה שדרשו בספרי מנין שאין שואלין בגורלות שנאמר תמים תהיה עם ד' אלוקיך היינו ג"כ עד"ז כשתולה בגורל" העתידות, אבל כשעושה גורל להכריע בין שני צדדים שאין לו הכרעה שרי. וכעת הראוני ב"כרם שלמה" שציין להפוסקים בנקטו כן, האלף לך שלמה או"ח תס"ב חוו"י סי ס"א, תשובות גאוני קדמאי סי' ס'. ושמעתי מחמי זצ"ל שבכל דבר שהיו לו שני צדדים היה עושה לפי הגורל והיה אומר ד' מנת חלקי וכוסי אתה תומיך גורלי, ושאל לרבינו החזו"א אם מותר, והשיב לא דמותר ואין בזה חשש שאינו מקבל הדברים אלא כעצה. 

וכתבו באחרונים דכיון שישראל אינם תחת המזלות רק בהשגחה מיוחדת מהבורא ית"ש, ולכך אפילו רואים במזלות אי אפשר לסמוך אצלם אלא בההווה ולא בהעתיד, אם כן אף שיכולים לפעמים לכוון ההווה, בישראל אי אפשר בעתידות, ואם הוא מאמין בה' ומתפלל אילו משנה גם מזלו, וכמבואר בשבת (קנו:) וא"כ באופן דאין שואלים לקבל תשובת הרואים כאמיתית לסמוך אל זה אין איסור מדינא.

לכן נראה שאין איסור לשאול ולחקור אצל המסתכל בכף היד, שיש יסוד בזוה"ק פרשת יתרו 'ואתה תחזה' שבגוף האדם בכפות אצבעותיו רמזים למעמדו ולמזלו, מ"מ עליו לידע שאצל עם ישראל הכל תלוי בתפילה ומעשים טובים, וגם נכריות אלו ידיעותיהן לא ברורות ולא מבינות בכף היד לגמרי, ומבלבלות בדברים שהם אמת ושקר יחד, וראוי שלא לשאול בהן כלל רק לסמוך על הקב"ה בעתידו, וברבוי תפלה צדקה ומעשים טובים ירחם עלינו בעולם הזה בבני חיי ומזוני ונזכה לחיי עלום הבא.

Aileen Cannon's 'Insane' Donald Trump Filing Trashed by Legal Experts

George Conway, a lawyer and frequent critic of Trump, wrote: "In the decades that I have been a lawyer, this is the most bizarre order I've ever seen issued by a federal judge.

"What makes that all the more amazing is that the second and third most bizarre orders I've ever seen in federal court were also issued by Judge Cannon in this case."

In a series of posts, Norm Eisen, who served as a special counsel to the House Judiciary Committee during the former president's first impeachment, said: "Cannon seems inclined to push the case to trial but is basically asking if she can stack the deck so Trump wins.

"It's clumsy & amateurish—seems to know she's wobbly & she's asking the parties for help with threshold things that are normally figured out by the judge."

'You need a Rafah strategy that works,' Biden tells Netanyahu in stern call

“I am for the defeat of Hamas. I believe that they are an evil terrorist group with not just Israeli, but American blood on their hands,” Biden said.

The president cautioned, however, that “there is a better way” than the strategy than the one Israel has outlined.

Exclusive Torah study

 Rav Saadiya Gaon (Emunah v’deos 10:14) There are Torah scholars who thlnk that it is not appropriate for a person in this world to concern himself with anything other than the acquiring of wisdom... and I found everything they stated concerning wisdom to be true and correct, but their error is that they said that a person should only concern himself with acquiring wisdom and not do other things, because if a person does not concern himself with food, dwelling , and clothing, wisdom will be nullified since there is no existence without  them, and if a person casts himself with these needs on other people, he will be despised and ignored, and his words will not be listened to. ... And the sons of Levi did not have a share of the grain but one of thirteen, because they are a tribe from among thirteen. , and G-d gave them the tithe to provide them with food. And these people were solely concerned with acquiring wisdom for otherwise  wisdom would have been lost. They were involved exclusively in acquiring and teaching Torah wisdom. And thus it was beneficial for everyone

Trump’s ‘bloodbath’ tirade contained a warning on Chinese cars. Here are the facts.

Trump has been trying since last year to drive a wedge between unions’ leaders, who are overwhelmingly aligned with Biden, and their rank-and-file membership. A significant part of last year’s UAW strike against the Big Three U.S. automakers involved fears that unionized auto workers would be left out of the EV transition, especially considering that much of the production of critical parts such as batteries occurs in non-union plants.

Mar-a-Lago Judge’s Stark Ruling: Jury Sees Secret Files or Trump Wins

The MAGA-friendly federal judge who keeps siding with Donald Trump in his Mar-a-Lago classified records case has forced prosecutors to make a stark choice: allow jurors to see a huge trove of national secrets or let him go.

U.S. District Judge Aileen M. Cannon’s ultimatum Monday night came as a surprise twist in what could have been a simple order; one merely asking federal prosecutors and Trump’s lawyers for proposed jury instructions at the upcoming trial.

But as she has done repeatedly, Cannon used this otherwise innocuous legal step as yet another way to swing the case wildly in favor of the man who appointed her while he was president.

White House Rips Donald Trump's Comments on Jews Who Back Democrats

Trump, the presumptive 2024 Republican presidential nominee, said during the segment: "Any Jewish person that votes for Democrats hates their religion. They hate everything about Israel and they should be ashamed of themselves because Israel would be destroyed."

Monday, March 18, 2024

Pennsylvania man sentenced for setting Midwood rabbi’s house on fire

According to the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, Karelefsky was caught on video lighting a fire under the front porch of Rabbi Jonathan Max’s East 17th Street home in the middle of the night on June 13, 2019. The fire quickly spread to two adjacent homes, forcing 13 people to evacuate, including Max and his family.

MAGA Reps Suddenly Face an Existential Threat: Themselves

What nearly all of these incumbents have in common is that their opponents hail from the far-right fringes of the party. Where the incumbents are on Fox and Newsmax, the challengers are regulars on Bannon’s show, hoping to land endorsements from figures like Mike Lindell, Roger Stone, and Michael Flynn.

Did Donald Trump Threaten 'Bloodbath' If He Loses? Here's What Happened

George Conway, an attorney and Trump critic, argued on social media that whether or not Trump was referring to the auto industry, what matters was his consistent use of "apocalyptic and violent language in an indiscriminate fashion as a result of his psychopathy and correlative authoritarian tendencies."

"It's a classic trait and technique of authoritarian demagogues," he said. "He catastrophizes *everything* to rile up his cultish supporters, and to bind them to him, and to make them willing to do his bidding."

Zika in Halachah

To give us a sense of the magnitude of the epidemic, according to an account from the rabbinic court of Rav Shmuel Vozner (1913-2015), over 1,000 cases were presented to the court requesting abortion. The court prohibited abortion in every single case (consistent with the general approach of Rabbi Feinstein). As a postscript, it is further reported that in all the cases, save one, no harm befell the subsequent children. As this is an anecdotal account, absent any details of the cases, we cannot know whether the women had confirmed cases of rubella, and if so, during which trimester. In any case it is a remarkable number.

Not everyone can be successful

 Chullin (24a) If a student does not see progress in his studies after five years, he never will. R. Jose says, After three years

Wisdom and Sickness

 Tosefta (Berachos 3:5) Anyone whose body was stricken with some desease, because of his wisdom it is a good sign for him. And anyone whose wisdom was stricken with some desease, because of his body it is a bad sign for him.” He used to say, “Anyone who lost his mind, because of his wisdom it is a good sign for him. And anyone who lost his wisdom because of his mind it is a bad sign for him.”

Prestigious Jewish school principal in New York convicted of embezzlement

Suffolk County District Attorney says David Ostrove diverted approximately $8.4 million of Schechter School of Long Island funds into accounts controlled by him

Trump Agonistes, ‘Bloodbath’ and ‘Hostages’ Edition

The real news is that Mr. Trump promised to impose tariffs on foreign-made cars, apparently no matter where they’re from. This would hurt U.S. working-class consumers by raising car prices, much as his steel tariffs enhanced the profits of U.S. steel companies while hurting other companies that use steel.

In Vandalia, Ohio, Mr. Trump also repeated his frequent line that those convicted of crimes for the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol are “hostages” and “unbelievable patriots.” He vowed to help them if he wins in November, which implies mass pardons.

While some rioters have arguably been treated too harshly, they broke one or more laws by breaching police barriers and besieging the Capitol. Police were injured. The rioters also disrupted Congress’s session ratifying the votes of the Electoral College.

“I think it’s unfortunate at a time that there are American hostages being held in Gaza, that the President or any other leaders would refer to people that are moving through our justice system as hostages,” former Vice President Mike Pence said Sunday on CBS’s Face the Nation. “It’s just unacceptable.”

Sunday, March 17, 2024

First-time Parent at 88: Has Israel's Fertility Craze Gone Too Far?

Outside of Haredi society the report was received with far more criticism, and with quite a few ethical questions about the future of the infant born to such elderly parents, and the significant medical risks involved in pregnancy and birth at such an age.

Trump’s Bizarre Clinton Conspiracy Is a Total Acid Trip

Donald Trump’s unfounded new claim that Hillary Clinton used acid to delete her emails shows the former president doesn’t quite grasp how the BleachBit software program works.

“They released Hillary Clinton. She hammered her phones, she used all sorts of acid testing and everything else. They call it BleachBit, but it’s essentially acid that will destroy everything within 10 miles,” he told Newsmax. “I mean, what she did was unbelievable. Nothing happens to her.”

Jared Kushner's New Foreign Deals Spark 'Corruption' Accusation

Garcia wrote on X on Friday: "Jared Kushner is back to brokering major deals with foreign governments per new reports today. We've already exposed his $2 billion investment fund with the Saudis, and we are pushing hard to ensure this grift gets the attention it demands. This is real corruption."

Schumer saves Bibi

 Having seen his lowest levels of support in months, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's popularity has gotten a bounce in the polls, which some say is partly due to the Biden administration and Democrats' growing criticism against the Jewish state.  

Saturday, March 16, 2024

How Trump advanced Arab-Israeli peace but fueled Palestinian rage

“I think the Abraham Accords were incredibly important, but this disaster that we’re living through is a reminder that you cannot secure Israel simply through diplomatic work with Sunni nation-states,” said Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut, a Democratic member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Trump’s turn against Israel offers stark reminder of what his diplomacy looks like

Trump’s original grievance-based analysis reflects a transactional, unorthodox approach to foreign policy that often prioritizes his own personal goals over a standard understanding of the national interest. It also highlighted a contrast with his potential 2024 election opponent. Biden reacted to the attack by using all of the tools of traditional statesmanship, including rhetoric, personal behind-the-scenes contacts with key foreign leaders and by mobilizing allies. Like Trump, Biden has had a personal and political beef with Netanyahu – but shelved his differences with him weeks before the attack and has been in constant contact with the prime minister since it occurred.

Biden is seeking to strike a balance. He has shown the most ardent support for Israel of any recent US president and acknowledged its desire to retaliate and reestablish its sense of security after the most shocking penetration of its borders and national psyche in 50 years. But Biden is also sending private and public signals to Netanyahu that Israel’s response should not infringe the laws of war and that he should consider the humanitarian consequences of an invasion of Gaza, as he seeks to prevent the war escalating into a dangerous regional conflict that could draw in the US.

Trump breaks silence on Israel's military campaign in Gaza: 'Finish the problem'

Trump did lay out a few markers in the three weeks that followed the Hamas attack. He said on Oct. 11 that a future Trump administration would “fully support Israel defeating, dismantling, and permanently destroying the terrorist group Hamas,” while telling the Republican Jewish Coalition later that month that Hamas fighters “will burn forever in the eternal pit of hell." That month, his campaign also said that, if elected again, he would bar Gaza residents from entering the U.S. as part of an expanded travel ban.

In the four-plus months since, however, the former president’s once-ardent public backing of Israel has gone mostly quiet.

Doctors question science behind blood sugar diet trend

Prof Kar thinks using CGMs - which are used by people with diabetes - when there's no health reason to do so can drive an obsessive focus on numbers which, in the most extreme cases, "can translate into eating disorders".

According to eating disorder charity Beat, "people with eating disorders often fixate on numbers... as part of their illness, so we'd never recommend that anybody affected uses glucose monitors".

The Judge’s Ruling on Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis Is a Mess

Judge McAfee, at age 35, is even younger than Ito was during the O.J. trial and has only been on the bench a year. His inexperience, and perhaps his mindset as a white male Republican member of the Federalist Society, have begun to show.

Worse, at the end of all that, McAfee produced a poorly written, poorly reasoned ruling. McAfee had promised the prosecution and defense that he would have his decision out today and that “no ruling of mine is ever going to be based on politics. I’m going to be following the law as best I understand it.”

Judge rejects Trump’s bid to disqualify Georgia prosecutor

A judge in Atlanta ruled Friday that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis can continue prosecuting former President Donald Trump and his co-defendants for trying to overturn Georgia’s 2020 presidential election if one of her top prosecutors on the case, Nathan Wade, is removed from the team.

But Judge Scott McAfee wrote that either Willis and her entire office or Wade must step aside to prevent an “appearance of conflict” over potential financial improprieties caused by their romantic relationship. Within hours of the ruling, Wade offered his resignation in a letter to Willis.

Friday, March 15, 2024

The Untold Story of Zipporah, Wife of Moses

What were they speaking about? Rashi tells us that Moses had divorced his wife:

How did she [Miriam] know that Moses had separated from his wife? R. Nathan says: Miriam was beside Zipporah when Moses was told that Eldad and Medad [newly appointed prophets] were prophesying in the camp. When Zipporah heard this, she said, “Woe to their wives if they are required to prophesy, for they will separate from their wives just as my husband separated from me.”

From this, Miriam knew [about it] and told Aaron.11

In truth, however, it was only Moses who was required to separate from his wife in order to be constantly “on call,” ready to speak to G‑d at any moment. Other prophets remained married and led normal family lives.


 Zohar (Balak 163) It is written in the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon that there are three signs, the sign of sin is jaundice, of insanity is excessive talking and that he knows nothing is that he praises himself 

As Biden impeachment stalls, House GOP turns to backup plans

House Republicans are increasingly acknowledging that they don’t have the votes to impeach President Joe Biden, leaving them in search of other ways to antagonize the White House.

The New Antisemitism

The core of this new antisemitism lies in the idea that Jews are not a historically oppressed people seeking self-preservation but instead oppressors: imperialists, colonialists, and even white supremacists. This view preserves vestiges of the trope that Jews exercise vast power. It creatively updates that narrative to contemporary circumstances and current cultural preoccupations with the nature of power and injustice.

Outrage as Los Angeles synagogue hosting Muslim group covers up hostage posters

The Conservative synagogue in Los Angeles, HAMAKOM(formerly Temple Aliyah), which also operates a community center, school and kindergarten, rented out its premises to a local Muslim organization, the Islamic Society of West Valley (ISWV), for a Ramadan event, and ordered the hostages' posters to be covered.

"The fact that they felt the need to hide posters of hostages to make terrorists and their supporters feel more what? Comfortable? says it all. They want to bow down to those who hate us instead of standing up loud and proud in support and defense of Israel," a local community member told Ynet.

Nasrallah rejoices at ultra-Orthodox threat about leaving country over military draft

Nasrallah referred to Defense Minister Yoav Gallant's statements regarding the draft and his call to find a solution. According to Nasrallah, the issue is currently "a big problem in Israeli society." He addressed the chief rabbi's ultimatum, where he threatened that all ultra-Orthodox would leave Israel if they had to draft, and rejoiced: "Let them pack their bags and leave."

Schumer's anti-Netanyahu speech stuns Israel

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer's (D-N.Y.) speech calling for a new government in Israel landed like an earthquake Thursday, delivering a huge shock to the already tense U.S.-Israel relationship.

Why it matters: In addition to being the most senior Jewish elected official in the country, Schumer has had one of the longest and closest relationships with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of any U.S. politician.

Schumer's speech stunned officials and observers in both Washington and Jerusalem because he has been — and still is — the Democratic Party's most avid supporter of Israel in decades.

His harsh remarks about Netanyahu create more political space for other Democratic members of Congress to publicly voice their criticism of the Israeli government amid the ongoing war in Gaza.

After uproar, Schumer clarifies: Israel has the right to choose its own leaders

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Thursday sought to clarify his remarks against the Israeli government which caused a firestorm.

“The US cannot dictate the outcome of an election. That is for the Israeli public to decide,” he wrote in a post on social media.

“As a democracy, Israel has the right to choose its own leaders. But the important thing is that Israelis are given a choice. There needs to be a fresh debate about the future,” he added.

Earlier, Schumer gave a speech in which he called for new elections to be held in Israel, saying that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "has lost his way." He further called the Prime Minister an "obstacle to peace."