Many good friends and readers have been inquiring of late about when I would resume writing.
That would be a while, I am afraid, as I have decided to extend my hiatus for a bit longer.
I sincerely apologize for not answering everyone individually.
Although you doubtless each deserve a personal response, I am frankly unable to handle the volume of correspondence coming my way on a one-by-one basis – much as I would have liked to do so.
So please consider my collective reply as a personal one and know that I deeply appreciate your concern and support.
I’ve been receiving many inquiries regarding my whereabouts.
I’m currently on vacation, enjoying the arrival of my first grandson and my new role of Grandmother.
When I resume my writing, the articles will appear exclusively here on my blog.
Jews praying at the Western Wall – an 1859 painting by Carl Haag.
All UN institutions serially test our sanity – very sorely so. UNESCO – the gallingly misnamed “educational, scientific and cultural” arm of the dysfunctional organization – managed to barely brake at the brink of bedlam, but only just and only for now. At the very last minute it let go of a plan to pronounce the Western Wall a Muslim holy shrine, an integral part and parcel of the al-Aksa Mosque compound.
That presumably would have accorded Muslims international sanction to bar the Jews from Judaism’s holiest site – the remnant of the great Temple, in front of which for 2,000 years Jews bewailed the Temple’s destruction, the loss of their sovereignty and their ongoing tragedy.
So pivotal a Jewish site was to be consigned to Islam because of a Johnny-come-lately tale that Muhammad tethered his winged steed Burak there on a mysterious mythical midnight flight.
Here it needs be noted that the identification of the Western Wall as Burak’s hitching post is quite recent – less than a hundred years old. It was the brainchild of the infamous Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini, who would become Hitler’s avid collaborator during WWII. Continue reading
Husseini giving the “Heil Hitler” Salute to Bosnian Muslim volunteers to the notorious Waffen SS Handzar Division in November 1943.
No one can accuse Israel’s Left of missing a beat. But the attentive ear of our homegrown self-appointed guardians of other people’s consciences is selective. All sorts of blood-curdling incitement throughout the Arab/Muslim realm fail to resonate with them. Yet they amplify with relish any aside by the true objects of their animus – Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu foremost.
And so, the other day Netanyahu had the temerity to remark that the Palestinians’ still-venerated Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini opposed Hitler’s initial plan to merely ethnically cleanse Europe of Jews and exile them to such exotic locations as Madagascar. Husseini insisted the Jews burn.
It’s important to note that at the time of Husseini’s meeting with Hitler in June 1941, the “final solution” hadn’t yet become official Third Reich policy (despite slaughter that had already begun in occupied Eastern Europe). The Final Solution would be formally adopted only on January 20, 1942 at the Wannsee Conference.
For outward appearances at least, Germany’s declared objective was to expel Jews from Europe. Husseini couldn’t abide the thought and railed against mere banishment. He clamored for the Jews’ physical obliteration instead. This doesn’t mean that he inspired Hitler or that he gave him the idea for wiping all Jews out but it does powerfully attest to the mindset of the then-principal leader of the Arab world.
But who cares about fine distinctions? Instantly, a great indignant outcry arose from the righteous ranks of the Left. Netanyahu, it was bewailed, is cleansing Hitler of guilt and pinning it on Husseini. It’s as if villainy can only reside in a single persona and the villain’s kindred ideologues and avid accomplices are therefore unjustly accused.
So let’s set the record straight – Husseini wasn’t just Hitler’s useful fool. His hands were stained with Jewish blood – lots of it – and the Allies indeed declared him a wanted war criminal at the end of WWII. Continue reading
Rabin in the Knesset (c. 1976)- He was hardly the dove that leftist historiographers posthumously portray for propaganda purposes.
We had recently been informed in rather dramatic headlines that during his first stint as prime minister, Yitzhak Rabin had denigrated settlement movement ideologues “a cancer.” No less.
This supposedly startling revelation came from a hitherto never-broadcast 1976 interview granted by Rabin to an unnamed Channel 2 reporter. The segment features in a documentary Rabin: in his own words, which was aired at the Haifa Film Festival. There – how unsurprisingly – it was crowned best in its category.
Presumably Rabin’s antiquated aspersion should have sent us all dutifully reeling with shock.
But it isn’t as if Rabin’s vocabulary choices were ever restrained. After all, post-Oslo he denounced those who disagreed with him as “Hamas collaborators.” For all he cares, he hectored abrasively back in the day, his critics can spin like propellers. That, Rabin proclaimed in his far-from-minced words, was the only outcome which undesirable sorts could conceivably expect of democratic dissent. Continue reading
Ezer Weizman- “the Eternity of Israel shall not deceive and the Arabs won’t let us down.”
Back when late president Ezer Weizman was still the witty commander of the Israel Air Force, given to rolling cool quips off his tongue, he elaborated only semi-facetiously on a staple quote from the First Book of Samuel: “the Eternity of Israel shall not deceive” (1 Samuel 15-29). To the promise of unfailing divine providence for Israel, Weizman added: “and the Arabs won’t let us down.”
In other words, we can count on our quick-tempered neighbors to extricate us out of any tight spot via their shortsighted intransigence. Less flippantly, Weizman’s contemporary, ultra-dove Abba Eban, hinted at an obliquely related reality when he judged that to their distinct disadvantage the Arabs “never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity.”
That said, niggling doubts persisted all along at the back of our minds. There always preyed the bothersome hypothetical of what would happen if the Arabs Ezer wisecracked about would wise-up and quit being too pigheaded for their own good. Now it seems that what we distantly dreaded has finally come to pass.
If things truly went our way, Palestinian Authority figurehead Mahmoud “Abu-Mazen” Abbas would for sure have announced unequivocally from the UN General Assembly podium that he is revoking the Oslo Accords with immediate effect. Continue reading
When Suha concluded, Hillary embraced her warmly and planted affectionate kisses on her cheek
The hijinks and tomfoolery of America’s presidential election season suffice to confound the minds of the diminishing numbers of Americans who remain unfashionably focused on issues. The raucous monkeyshines parading as the democratic process in action surely stupefy outsiders.
These shenanigans really shouldn’t preoccupy Israelis and it’s altogether not our place to pass judgment. Still, sometimes it’s awfully hard to keep our distance and our cool in the face of hypocrisy that cries to High Heaven.
Moreover, opinion-molders in the Land of the Free prefer to keep their news-consumers politically correct and suitably uninformed. Hence, odds are that most of the minority of eligible primary voters and caucus participants (who actually play a role in the democratic process) won’t connect the dots.
For example, it’s more than unlikely that many will put into context Hillary Clinton’s jibe at Donald Trump’s failure to dissociate himself from unsavory comments by others within his earshot. Clinton informed all and sundry in her school marmish demeanor that she was “appalled” that Trump didn’t chide an audience member at a New Hampshire campaign event for claiming President Barack Obama was a Muslim and “not even an American.”
“Not only was it out of bounds, it was untrue,” intoned Hillary in an interview with CNN, but “he should have from the beginning corrected that kind of rhetoric, that level of hatefulness.” Continue reading
No one was about to shoot him, sadistically torture his wife or bash the baby’s head
When it suits them, Israel’s left-wingers tug manipulatively at Jewish heartstrings. They know how to play us – or so they think.
And thus Labor leader Isaac Herzog would have us believe that just because we are descendants of persecuted refugees (literally running for their very lives), it now behooves us to open the gates of our still-beleaguered mini-state to the still-inimical descendants of those who denied asylum to distraught Jewish refugees (and thereby sentenced them to death).
Out to garner warm accolades from the indefatigable do-gooder set, Herzog urges that Israel admit Syrian refugees – the very ones who imbibe Nazi-like Judeophobic propaganda with their mothers’ milk. There’s no doubt that they hate us. The only question is whether they ran away from IS and accordingly hate us in the Assad-Hezbollah-Iranian idiom or whether they escaped Assad and despise us in the rabid Jihadist vein.
Conceivably, by Herzog’s reckoning, ushering into our midst outright intractable enemies is a sure-fire vote-getter. Besides, it appears that no pretext to embarrass the government is taboo. And so, to underscore his ploy, Herzog has posted on his Facebook page nothing less than the contention that those who disagree with him: “have forgotten what it means to be Jews”. Continue reading
Abbas is just about as crucial to Israel as scarecrows are to contemporary agriculture.
Intelligence analysis is an iffy proposition in the best of times. It’s inevitably tinged with political agendas, wishful thinking, conformity to groupthink, reluctance to upset the boss, keenness to upset the boss, jockeying for position, fear of being proven wrong – and much more from the self-serving to the genuinely clueless.
It’s with this in mind that we ought to approach the periodic perplexity of whether this time Ramallah figurehead Mahmoud Abbas is finally honest about his oft-sounded declarations of intent to resign.
To be sure, he’s not quite legally in office as president of the Palestinian Authority. He was questionably elected to a four-year term in 2005 and is now completing his eleventh year in that position. With noteworthy frequency, sometimes every few months or so, Abbas has been putting the whole watching world on notice that he has had it, is about to throw in the towel and walk away from the leadership. Continue reading