בס׳ד

"Where does it say that you have a contract with G-d to have an easy life?"

the Lubavitcher Rebbe



"Failure is not the enemy of success; it is its prerequisite."

Rabbi Nosson Scherman



25 Jul 2017

Excluded

Margaret Bergmann Lambert, Jewish High Jumper Excluded From Berlin Olympics, Dies at 103

After Temple Mount ‘Victory’ Arab MKs Set Sights on Western Wall

Rising tensions

Are seeds of a new Intifada being planted amidst rising tensions at the Temple Mount?

אל תפספסו: טיפ וסגולה ליום מוצלח // ב' באב

WATCH: Rabbi Paysach Krohn Speaks At Real Clear Daf Siyum

Sinas Chinam is the most terrrible of all sins

The Kli Yakar says that Moshe's Mussar ot Bnei Yisroel when he says in Parshas Devarim, "Bein Paran U'Bein Tofel" refers to the period between 17 Tammuz and 9 Av. Tofel refers to the Chet HaEgel (tofel is from "Tifla" folly which is refers to avodah zara) which happened on 17 Tammuz and Paran refers to the Miraglim which happened on Tisha B'Av.

When Bnei Yisroel is in trouble we can survive either because the mitzvos we perform will merit Hahsem's help or if we are united and have achdus even if we do not deserve it we will be saved. With the Chet of the Egel which was against Hashem we lost His divine protection. With the Chet of the Meraglim which caused sinas chinam we lost our unity and our second possible saving grace.

The Kli Yakar further explains that the Mazal of Tammuz is Sartan, the crab. The crab walks backwards just like we turned from Hashem with the Egel. The Mazal of Av is Aryeh since on Tisha B'Av we started to devour each other like lions. This date was not coincidentally the destruction of the Bais HaMikdash which was destroyed because of Sinas Chinam.

Moshe tells Bnei Yisroel you have put yourselves in a precarious situation by losing protection from both ends and that is why we are exposed to our enemies during these three weeks as the pasuk says in Eicha "Kol Rodfeha Hisiguha Bein HaMitzarim". These are the days that we are defenseless against our mortal enemies.
http://www.revach.net/moadim/the-3-weeks/Parshas-Devarim-Kli-Yakar-3-Weeks-Between-a-Rock-and-a-Hard-Place/592

Fake and Real

Fake news: Real terror

Calling Out Linda Sarsour on Al Aqsa

CALIFORNIA FRIDAY SERMON: IMAM AMMAR SHAHIN CITES ANTISEMITIC HADITH

Jewish Legal Right to the Land Celebrates 95 Years

23 Jul 2017

Two letters

KikarHashabat published a letter written in Hebrew by Chaya Salomon, one of the victims of the Friday evening stabbing by a Palestinian. It is a letter that Chaya, a teacher, attached to her students' report cards and I have roughly translated her message to her students.

Dear student,
With the distribution of report cards at the end of the semester
I remember a different report card
Almost like in school
It is given by our heavenly Father who dwells everywhere
But instead of subjects and test results
He divides results into the following subjects.
Friendship, patience, understanding, love.
Kindness, responsibility, gratitude and humility
And that report card is important
Even more than any other report card
And not just once a year or twice
But every minute that passes
Because many times in the course of life
We forget and forget again that being a virtuous person
This is the real test in life !!!

Wishing you success,
Your teacher Chaya

The Jerusalem Post published part of a letter the killer wrote on Facebook.

"You, sons of monkeys and pigs, if you do not open the gates of al-Aksa, I am sure that men will follow me and will hit you with an iron fist, I am warning you.”
http://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/West-Bank-terror-A-killers-last-testament-on-Facebook-500417

The New York Times referenced the Palestinian's post, as well.

“I am a young man who has not yet reached the age of 20, I have many dreams and ambitions!!” he wrote. “I loved life — to draw the smile on people’s faces. But what life is this when our women and young men are killed unjustly and our Aqsa is facing desecration.” He said he had a sharp knife, begged forgiveness from his family and signed off with emojis including hearts.
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/21/world/middleeast/jerusalem-israel-protests-al-aqsa-mosque.html

If I ask the New York Times why they didn't publish the sentence containing the words, "You, sons of monkeys and pigs" I am sure they will respond by explaining that space constraints hindered them from publishing his whole post. And yet, there were no space constraints for them to write, "Three Israelis were killed in what appeared to be a terrorist attack."

The proud mother

Why Rebbe Said "Gam Zu Letova"

Sefer Devarim is Moshe's closing message to Bnei Yisrael where he gives the mussar for the aveiros they have done, reviews with them all the mitzvos, and warns them about the future. The Gemara says (Bava Basra 165a) that most people steal, a few enter illicit relationships, and everybody speaks Avak Lashon Hara.

The Vilna Gaon finds a Remez to this gemara in the opening words of the parsha. "Eileh Hadevarim Asher Diber Moshe El Kol Yisroel". Eileh (Aleph, Lamed, Hey) is for Avak Lashon Hara. That is why it says El Kol Yisrael, because we are all oveir on this.
http://www.revach.net/parshas-hashavua/numbers-amp-letters/Parshas-Devarim-Vilna-Gaon-Moshe-Rabbeinu-Opens-With-A-Stab-At-Lashon-Hara/570

Palestinian teen butchers Israeli family, his mom is proud

As I read one of the sentences posted on Facebook by the Palestinian who stabbed three Israeli family members to death on Friday night, I wondered who taught him to think in such a fashion."

"You, sons of monkeys and pigs, if you do not open the gates of al-Aksa, I am sure that men will follow me and will hit you with an iron fist, I am warning you.”

22 Jul 2017

Blaming Israel

Three Israelis were stabbed to death in a Jewish settlement in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, hours after three Palestinians were killed in violence prompted by Israel's installation of metal detectors at entry points to the Noble Sanctuary-Temple Mount compound in Jerusalem's walled Old City.
https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2017/07/21/world/middleeast/21reuters-israel-palestine.html

Op-Ed: A Family Was Butchered During Their Shabbos Dinner – But They Will Blame Israel

The Argument Is About Jews, Not Metal Detectors

Fried Calls to Shut Phones in Shul

19 Jul 2017

The retracted article

In the space of two weeks, HonestReporting critiqued two articles (one and two) written by Tom O’Connor for Newsweek. That O’Connor was responsible for the following tweet referencing Israeli “apartheid” should have raised flags concerning his ability to report in a fair and accurate manner on Israel:
Read more: http://honestreporting.com/hr-success-newsweek-apologizes-retracts-two-biased-articles/

So, Newsweek retracted the articles but what about other sites which re-published the Newsweek articles such as this one?

Parashat Matot-Masay: The Incredible Potential of Every Jew

One of the Chashuvim of Vilna once came crying to Rav Zemeleh Volozhin that he married off his son to the wise and kind daughter of a prominent family of Vilna, but to his surprise after the Chasuna they found out that the girl was 10 years older than the boy!

Rav Zemeleh cut him off mid-sentence and answered him light heartedly. At the end of Parshas Masei (36:10), the Torah mentions the names of the Bnos Tzelafchad in a different order than previous mentioned in Parshas Pinchos (27:1). Rashi comments that previously they were mentioned in order of their wisdom, while here they were mentioned in the order of their age. Why here did the Torah mention them by age?

Rav Zemeleh explained that the gemara Bava Basra (119) says that the youngest any of them married was at the age of 40. Surely the Torah would not want to reveal their ages before they married so it listed them in order of their wisdom. Only here when the Torah says that they married their cousins, does the Torah finally reveal their true ages. Apparently the Torah felt that after their marriage, no one worried if anyone would find out how old they really were.
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/story/Parshas-Masei-Rav-Zemele-Volozhin-Show-No-Sympathy-For-The-Boy-Who-Is-Tricked-Into-Marrying-An-Older-Girl/4643

18 Jul 2017

A clothes call

Why Did Edward Reichmann Want to be Buried with his Socks On?

Watch: Chareidi Woman, Tzippora Nussbaum, Appear On Ted Talks – “How Clothes Tell a Story”

Family of Jewish woman murdered in Paris moving to Israel

השנה הסופרים יהיו מפוצצים לפני ראש השנה... הרב רפאל זר

So, watching the video below, do you thing Kate is going to start a tznius trend? http://realidadtora.blogspot.co.il/2017/07/blog-post_89.html

The Senate floor

Susan Rice no longer planning to testify Tuesday before House panel

An op-ed in the NYTimes about George Soros titled Israel’s War Against George Soros portrays the financier in very favorable terms, Israel not.

By the mitzvah of keeping your promise it says Moshe told the heads of each Shevet about this mitzvah. Why does the torah write this by this mitzvah? Bais Din has the obligation to enforce every mitzvah. The Netziv says that we usually make a promise under some sort of duress in the hopes that our promise will help us achieve our goal whether it is a promise to Hashem to save us or help us in some way or to another person to gain something in return from that person.

Unfortunately, he says, keeping promises is often not easy for us. Typically when the duress has passed and it is time for us to fulfill our end our enthusiasm dramatically wanes and we come up with all sorts of rationalizations why we need not keep our exactly as we promised it or even not at all. This is why Moshe told the leaders of the people that it is up to them to make sure that people keep their promise.

Using the same explanation Rav Zvi Hersh Voidaslav father of Rav Simcha Bunim MiPeshischa explains why the Torah says the seemingly superfluous words "K'Chol Hayotzeh MiPiv Yaaseh"; its deeper meaning is that you should keep your promise with exactly the same enthusiasm that you made it.
http://revach.net/article.php?id=522


צפת המומה - המקובל הזהיר מראש מהשריפה

WATCH: A Sofer Shares A Remarkable Discovery Following The Tzefas Fire

16 Jul 2017

Kashered with fire

Anti-Semitism at highest level in UK, audit finds

Knesset committee approves United Jerusalem bill

After Bnei Yisrael returned from the war with Midyan with the spoils, Moshe taught them the Halachos of Hagalas Keilim, kashering the utensils through boiling water and fire. The parsha begins with the words, "Zos Chukas HaTorah," (Matos 31:21). What is so special about the Halachos of Hagala that the Torah uses the strong words, "Chukas HaTorah?"

Rav Moshe Feinstein answers that from the ability to make treif utensils kosher by boiling them we learn that a person who sullies his neshama with aveiros, can also kasher it and cleanse it as if he never sinned. This is a pillar of the Torah, as it teaches people never to give up, no matter how far they have gone away from the Torah.

Moreover, we see that keilim used in fire need to be kashered with fire, libun. And keilim used in boiling water become kasher with boiling water. This teaches us that we must do tshuva the same way we did the aveira. If a person sinned with the burning desire of taava, so too must be the tshuva. And if the taava was less passionate, then the tshuva can be on the same scale.
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/quick-vort/Parshas-Matos-Rav-Moshe-Feinstein-Hagalas-Keilim-A-Pillar-of-The-Torah/5120


CLINTON FOUNDATION WITNESS FOUND DEAD

The dying veteran's wish

Texas veteran’s dying wish is for you to give him a call

How to Cure MACHLOKET

How to stop hating people

Is Tznius One's Private Business?

Watch: Hotovely demolishes fake news

14 Jul 2017

The attack

Palestinian Terrorist Admits PA Payments Encouraged Him to Attack Israelis

Parshas Pinchas - The Present Rests Upon the Past, The Future, Upon the Present

Below are the initial headlines regarding an attack on Friday morning.

3 Palestinians killed in Jerusalem al-Quds shooting - presstv.ir

Jerusalem: Palestinians killed after 'shooting attack'- Al Jazeera

Several Casualties in Shooting Near Jerusalem Holy Site: Police - NYTimes

Terror on Temple Mt. 3 Israelis shot - Debka 

Update: The Al Jazeera headline has been changed to Jerusalem: Israeli policemen killed in shooting attack

The article goes on to state, "The western wall of the compound, also known as the Wailing Wall, is considered the holiest site in Judaism."

Well, I thought the Temple Mount was the holiest site in Judaism. Do you think the editors will change the sentence if I write to them?

MaanNews has the headline, "3 Palestinian citizens of Israel, 2 police officers killed in Jerusalem shooting."

The article begins, "Three Palestinian citizens of Israel and two police officers -- also Palestinian citizens of Israel -- were killed..."

10 Jul 2017

Zealousness

Antisemitism, Terror Support:  General Nastiness At Palestine Expo, London

Blinded vet blasts Canada's $10m payout to Gitmo thug

WATCH: Binyamin Netanyahu Rips Into UN…By Quoting Torah

"Pinchas Ben Elazar Ben Aaron HaCohen Hayshiv Es Chamosi Mai'al Bnei Yisroel"; "Pinchas, son of Elazar, son of Aaron the Kohen, turned back my anger from upon the Bnei Yisroel" Instead of saying "Hayshiv"- "turned back" my anger - it should have said "Bateil"- "nullified"?

Dovid HaMelech says in Tehillim,"Pinchos arose and executed judgment and the plague stopped. It was counted to him "LiTzdakah"- as a righteous deed - for all generations forever." What does the act of Pinchas have to do with Tzdakah?

The Vilna Gaon answers, according to the Torah every Jew is obligated to give annually a Machatzis HaShekel - a half Shekel- for the purchase of Korbonos Tzibur - communal offerings. The word "Machatzis' consists of 5 letters, the middle one being a "Tzadi", the first letter of the word ‘Tzdakah". Immediately flanking the Tzadi are a "Ches " and a "Yud", which spell the word "Chai" - life - and at the outer ends are the letters "Mem" and "Tof", which spells the word "Mais" - death. This is an allusion to the adage "Utzedakah Tatzil MiMaves" - Tzedakah saves from death.

Pinchas through his zealousness removed the plague from the Bnei Yisroel, thus committing an act of Tzedakah whereby life prevailed and death was excluded.

In the word "Chamosi" - "my anger" - it is the reverse. The middle letters are "Mem" and "Tof", which spells "Mais" - "death" - and the outer letters "Ches " and a "Yud", which spell the word "Chai" - life. Hashem was saying that Pinchas "Hayshiv Es Chamosi" - inverted the word "Chamosi " - chasing death away and bringing life.
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/quick-vort/Parshas-Pinchas-Vilna-Gaon-Pinchas-Turns-Around-The-Word-Chamosi/489

9 Jul 2017

The Jewish version

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish version of ‘Shark Tank’ launches online

A call to academic colleagues

3 Rabbis Endorse Tznius Rules

The Yisroel V'Hazmanim brings the Medrash (Yalkut Shimoni Bamidbar 29) that says that Hashem wanted to give a Moed to each of the summer months. Nisan He gave Pesach, Iyar Pesach Sheini, and Sivan was Matan Torah. Then came Tammuz and the Chait HaEigel, and all Yamim Tovim for Tammuz, Av, and Elul were cancelled. In Tishrei, Hashem paid them back with Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur, and Succos.

The Chida says that had we not done the Eigel, Rosh HaShanah would have been in Tammuz and Yom Kippur in Av. In fact, says the Chida, that is when the Avos HaKedoshim celebrated these Moadim. However after the Eigel instead of celebrating receiving the Luchos in Tammuz, and turning the three weeks of Ymei Din into Yimei Ratzon, today we mourn for twenty one days. This is made up to us in Tishrei when we have twenty one days of Ratzon in the time of Din, from Rosh HaShanah until Hoshana Rabba.

One day soon these days will once again be joyous days, as the Pasuk in Zechariah (8:19) says, "Tzom HaRevi'i V'Tzom HaChamishi V'Tzom HaShevi'i V'Tzom HaAsiri Yihiyeh L'Bais Yehuda L'Sason U'L'Simcha U'L'Moadim Tovim". Then, says the Maharal MiPrague, Shiva Asar B'Tammuz and Tisha B'Av will be Yomim Tovim and the days in between will be Chol HaMoed. But only for those who mourn today.
http://revach.net/moadim/the-3-weeks/Chida-The-Joyous-Tammuz-Av-That-Could-Have-Been/4630

4 Jul 2017

Wasted and divisive

Students for Justice in Palestine UC Irvine — Out of Control

Nikki Haley urges UNESCO against ‘wasted’ focus on Hebron vote

The New York Times had an article titled Israel Faces Uproar Abroad as Netanyahu Yields to Ultra-Orthodox Jews.

At the demonstration on Saturday night, people held placards saying “Bibi, do not divide the Jewish people,” referring to the prime minister by his nickname. Among them, Rabbi Naamah Kelman-Ezrachi, who in the early 1990s became the Reform Movement’s first female rabbi ordained in Israel and who is a descendant of 10 generations of rabbis, said, “American Jewry has finally woken up to fight for pluralism in Israel.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/03/world/middleeast/israel-benjamin-netanyahu-ultra-orthodox-western-wall.html

I find it ironic that the placards referred not to dividing the Jewish people, years after the Reform and Conservative had no qualms in dividing the Jewish people when they formed their 'new and improved'  movements.

Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP)

3 Jul 2017

Opening your eyes

"Vayakam Bilam Vayeilech Vayashav Limkomo V'Gam Balak Halach LiDarko." (Balak 24:25). Bilam and Balak just witnessed amazing miracles and Hashem's divine protection for his beloved nation. Bilam had a conversation with a donkey and had words put in his mouth, despite the incredible lengths he had gone through to muster up the forces of evil to back his diabolical plan.

He lost his bid, but was not moved one bit. He did not tip his hat and graciously bow out. The whole experience did not change either him or Balak one iota from their former beliefs. Bilam went and returned to the exact place in his life where he had been before the incident, and Balak went back to his old path. How can these Reshaim have been so hardened and unmoved?

The Pninim Mishulchan Gavo'a brings in the name of Rav Eliyahu Mishkovsky that we see from here the little impact that open miracles have in moving a person to tshuva. Change does not come from instant revelation. Change is about noticing the little things in life. It is about opening your eyes to a fresh new outlook. These things have a far greater impact than lightening and thunder.
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/life-lessons/Parshas-Balak-Rav-Eliyahu-Mishkovsky-Balak-Bilam-Lose-But-Are-Not-Impressed/4622

Aiding others

They were aided by Portugal’s ‘Schindler.’ Now these WWII refugees are trying to help others.

“I would rather stand with God against man than with man against God,” Sousa Mendes said.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/they-were-aided-by-frances-schindler-now-these-world-war-ii-refugees-are-trying-to-help-others/2017/07/01/fbe53200-5a8a-11e7-aa69-3964a7d55207_story.html?utm_term=.56fe5551995a

Trying to convert Dutch Jewish children to Christianity

Watch: Liberals Love Shalom. With Such Friends, Who Needs Enemies!

1 Jul 2017

A sense of kinship

A member of Women of the Wall has written a NYT op-ed in which she describes the first time she was arrested and had to go to the police station.

There is a plaque on the wall there commemorating the bravery of a Jewish boy who dared to defy the British by sounding the shofar on Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year. I felt a deep sense of kinship with that boy, who was arrested and led to the same place years before me for the same type of “crime”: worshiping according to our faith.
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/01/opinion/jewish-women-israel-western-wall.html

AUDIO: R’ Ira Zlotowitz reflects on the 2 major turning points in his father’s life

R’ Aaron Kotler to Appear on Next Headlines Radio Show