Archive: Apr 2008

As Israel's 60th Independence Day swiftly approaches, considerations of Zionism and its discontents come to mind. The revolutionary notion that Zionism introduced into the Jewish mindset, informed by 19 centuries of powerless statelessness, was that Jews could, and indeed ought to stand up for themselves. From the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE, until the advent of modern Zionism, such a notion seemed absurd. Throughout the centuries of exile, Jews understood that their survival depended…
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Tuesday was a banner day, a proud day for Jewish conspiracy theorists in America. People like Joseph E. diGenova smiled with glee as they watched 84-year-old Ben Kadish carted into the Manhattan Federal District courthouse on charges of transferring classified information to Israel 25 years ago. He's just like Jonathan Pollard, they whooped. Another Pollard! At last, we have proof that Israel operates spy rings and SLEEPER CELLS in America! They bragged and bragged and smiled and smile…
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I just published a collection of my essays in English. Each time I am asked if I am also releasing the volume in Hebrew I feel a pain deep inside me when I answer that no, right now, my publisher is only interested in an English edition. Indeed it is a shame because I wrote most of the essays in Hebrew as well.   Writing in Hebrew is a qualitatively different experience than writing in English. Hebrew is a more compact language than English. It has fewer words and the words it has are dense…
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Speaking in February of the man she knows better than anyone else does, Michelle Obama said that her husband, Illinois Senator and candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination Barack Obama, is the only candidate for president who understands that before America can solve its problems, Americans have to fix their "broken souls." She also said that her husband's unique understanding of the state of souls of the American people makes him uniquely qualified to be President. Oba…
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Pessah - the Jewish celebration of freedom and God's dominion that begins on Saturday night - provides a timely insight into the foundations of Jewish faith and human nature. Jews believe in a God without form. The Jewish God is ineffable. To Abraham himself, God appeared only in visions, never in the "flesh." And yet, the story of God's deliverance of the Children of Israel from Egyptian bondage is packed with physical proofs of this consummately non-physical God. God exposes…
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Speaking to IDF commanders in Judea and Samaria last week, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert exhorted the officers tasked with preventing Palestinians from attacking Israel while operating under civilian cover to have sympathy for them. Olmert said "Take all the Palestinians who have been stripped at the roadblocks just because of fear that there may be terrorists and terror operatives among them. Take all those who wait at roadblocks because of fear that a car bomb may drive through the sam…
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The regime-affiliated Iranian Fars news agency published a sensational story this week. According to the Fars report, Saudi Arabia and Israel collaborated in killing Iranian terror-master Imad Mughniyeh in Damascus in February. The story is important regardless of whether it is true. It is important because it says something important about the nature of Iran's relationship with Syria. Specifically, it says that Iran views Syria as a vassal state. If Teheran were not convinced of its control…
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It has taken seven months, but it appears that the Bush administration has finally buckled under Congressional pressure and is ready to give US lawmakers a full briefing on the September 6 IDF bombing raid against the North Korean-built nuclear installation in Syria. Sunday it was reported that Congress has forced the administration's hand on the issue by making its approval of the administration's intelligence budget contingent on receiving a full briefing on the raid. Israel, which ini…
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The West stands by idly as its foundations are rent asunder. Last Friday the UN's Human Rights Council took a direct swipe at freedom of expression. In a 32-0 vote, the council instructed its "expert on freedom of expression" to report to the council on all instances in which individuals "abuse" their freedom of speech by giving expression to racial or religious bias. The measure was proposed by paragons of freedom Egypt and Pakistan. It was supported by all Arab, M…
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