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R’ Yosef Mendelevich Gives Chizuk to the Entire Baltimore Community PAGE 11

Bais Yaakov School for Girls 72nd Annual Tribute Dinner

TA Student Goes to State Final of the National Geographic Bee





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APRIL 10, 2014




‫יום הזיכרון‬ ‫יום העצמאות‬

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tz Yisrohe. l! e r E In r e m m u ora Amazing S deres Hat Join Us hFaoimr AZnvi Senter Shlita of Yeshiva A Torah Temimah

APRIL 10, 2014


CONTENTS COMMUNITY Around the Community . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

PESACH Tips for Involving Your Children in the Seder . . . . 30


Top Kosher Wine Scores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 History and Memory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Reflections on the Pesach Haggadah . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Pesach with Jamie . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Our Legacy Passed Along . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Snapping up the Seder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 Frogs Were Everywhere, But Where Was Shirley? .51

HUMOR & ENTERTAINMENT Centerfold. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52 Notable Quotes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Kids Fun Page. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

EDUCATION Trying to Murder the Devil . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Extracurricular Activities. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55

COVER STORY Leaving the Promised Land for Crimea. . . . . . . . . . 60

LIFESTYLES Herzog in History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 In the Kitchen. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Travel: Mississippi. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 The Weight Gain Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Dear Readers, After weeks of preparation, Pesach is finally here. I love sitting down to the seder; the house is sparkling clean, the children are excited to show off what they’ve learned, and we all look forward to participating in the seder. With all the new chometz-free snacks out there these days, it’s not too hard to survive without chometz for eight days. I personally love matzah, so I’m happy either way. But Pesach to me is more than just an absence of chometz; it’s a time we join together as a family to celebrate the yom tov. Thank G-d we lead busy lives, and the reality is that we don’t always get a chance to spend quality time together. Pesach is a time when we return to our roots and delve into our past. Most of us will probably admit that we have a favorite yom tov; one that speaks to us especially. My favorite would have to be Pesach, as it’s a very family-oriented yom tov. No matter where everyone lives throughout the year, we all come back to our parents, in-laws, or grandparents. The warmth of family, the appreciation we have towards Hashem for giving us so much, and the strength of the chain linking the generations of Klal Yisroel all come together on Pesach night. Pesach is eight days long and we at BJH wanted to make sure you will have enough to read over that time, so we have expanded this issue for your enjoyment. There is something for everyone in this week’s issue. For those who enjoy cooking up delicious yom tov meals, we have a bunch of great recipes for you to try. For the history buffs, we have a very interesting article about Jews in Crimea. As always, we have included some insightful divrei Torah and Jewish thought. There is so much to read and learn about the yom tov and its beauty. As always, we love hearing from our readers. Please feel free to email me at Wishing you and your family a chag kosher v’sameach,

Art Expression in the Haggadah. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58



Global News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 National News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 That’s Odd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27


Israel News . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

The Baltimore Jewish Home is an independent bi-weekly newspaper. Opinions expressed by writers are not neces­sarily the opinions of the publisher or editor. The Baltimore Jewish Home is not responsible for typographical errors, or for the kashrus of any product or business advertised within. The BJH contains words of Torah. Please treat accordingly.




APRIL 10, 2014


Around the


Bais Yaakov School for Girls 72nd Annual Tribute Dinner “Paving the Way for a Bright and Successful Future” The Baltimore community turned out en masse on March 25th at Beth Tfiloh to support Bais Yaakov of Baltimore as they continue to “Pave the Way for a Bright and Successful Future”. The turnout at the Bais Yaakov 72nd Annual Tribute Dinner was record-breaking, with over 780 people in attendance. Teachers, staff members, parents, grandparents, and friends joined together to pay tribute to the night’s honorees. The elegant décor, paired with a sensational dinner catered by O’Fishel, helped set a warm and welcoming atmosphere, making this year’s dinner a smashing success. Bais Yaakov paid tribute to the memory of Rabbi Hirsch Diskind ZT”L and bestowed upon Rabbi Shmuel Silber and his wife Aviva the Inaugural Rabbi Hirsch Diskind Rabbinic Leadership Award. Rabbi Hirsch Diskind ZT”L was a former principal of Bais Yaakov and beloved by his students and their parents, as well as by the community. Along with Rabbi Binyomin Steinberg ZT”L, the middle school principal during that time, Rabbi Diskind worked diligently and tirelessly for the continuity of the Jewish People through educating the next generations of Jewish women. The love and devotion of his past students was evident not only by the unprecedented attendance at the dinner, but also by the influx of hundreds of letters and memories presented to the extended Diskind family, as well as to Bais Yaakov, beginning from Rabbi Diskind’s petira this past year up until the Tribute Dinner. The pièce de résistance was the beautiful collection of these letters, memories, and dedications into a memorial book compiled by the devoted staff at Bais Yaakov. The book, along with the journal, will be made available online after Pesach. The Rabbinic Leadership Award bestowed on Rabbi and Mrs. Shmuel

and Aviva Silber is a reflection of Rabbi Diskind’s modus operandi, as Rabbi Silber, along with his wife, transcends the so-called generation gap, ignoring the boundaries between ‘types’ and delivering Yiddishkeit to all Jews of all backgrounds and of all ages. His message, warmth, and true Ahavas Yisrael (love of all Jews) are what make him a trailblazer in today’s Baltimore community. Rabbi Silber spoke eloquently and with heart. Rabbi Ari Flamm, Executive Director Emeritus, the evening’s Guest of Honor, is an individual truly deserving of our honor. His tireless devotion to Bais Yaakov and to its students and staff members over the last 46 years is unparalleled. Devoting his career to ensuring the financial stability of Bais Yaakov, Rabbi Flamm, through his affable and gregarious personality, developed relationships with individuals all over the map- geographically as well as ideologically. These relationships served the needs of Bais Yaakov and the Baltimore community at large which continued to grow exponentially over the last three decades. Rabbi Flamm, exhibiting his trademark style and charm, gave an emotional farewell, as he is retiring this year, and thanks to his friends, family, and admirers. Many Bais Yaakov teachers and staff members came out to join the community and the school in showing their admiration for their fellow educator, Mrs. Chana Kagan, as the

Rabbi Binyomin Steinberg ZT”L Legacy Award was bestowed upon her for Excellence in Chinuch. Mrs. Kagan, a beloved teacher at Bais Yaakov in both the Judaic and General Studies Departments at the high school, was herself a student of both Rabbi Hirsch Diskind ZT”L and Rabbi Binyomin Steinberg ZT”L. She thoroughly embodies the spirit of our school and these legendary leaders, and passes on to her students a deep understanding and appreciation for Jewish and world history. As role models and exceptional individuals, Boruch and Chanie Ber-

nstein were deserving of the Parents of the Year Award. Their friends and family echoed what Bais Yaakov already knows- that their volunteer work within the school as well as within the community, while using their professions and their native Baltimorean status and connections for the greater good, makes them the epitome of Parents of the Year. Congratulations to Bais Yaakov and the evening’s Honorees on a wonderful event. We look forward to joining you again next year!




APRIL 10, 2014

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APRIL 10, 2014


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TI Chemdas Trip a Splashing Success By Sara Gross, a YKY/TI parent

Our Chemdas trip was a “splashing” success! On March 25th, Yeshivas Kochav Yitzchok/Torah Institute’s fourth through eighth grades went on a thrilling trip to Sahara Sam’s Oasis indoor and outdoor water park in Cherry Hill, NJ. Chemdas is a learning program named for and l’iluy nishmas R’ Elozer Isbee z’’l in which the third through eighth graders review perakim of mishnayos on their own, and are then tested to ensure proficiency. This program, directed by Rabbi Dreyfuss, facilitates thousands of hours learning thousands of perakim of mishnayos throughout the year. Through Chemdas, talmidim develop an appreciation for learning mishnayos while building a strong mishnayos background that will assist them in learning gemara as they progress through yeshiva. Each grade is required to review a certain number of perakim to qualify for the grand trip, and every child is

given the opportunity to succeed. The trip is organized by Rabbi Juravel, led by Rabbi Hirsch, and subsidized by the Ladies Auxiliary. Throughout the year, the boys earn many terrific prizes for their learning as well. The morning of the trip began with an inspiring speech given by Rav Shrage Neuberger of Yeshivas Ner Yisroel. Following the speech, the boys boarded coach buses and were on their way to Cherry Hill. After arriving at their destination, they were served a delicious pizza lunch from Lakewood. The fun continued in Sahara Sam’s Oasis indoor water park, and the boys enjoyed every minute. There were many slides and pools, a lazy river, and water basketball. Additionally, the boys were given free arcade tokens to use in the park. After an exhilarating day, the fourth through sixth graders boarded the coach buses back to YKY/TI, where a delicious barbeque seuda was served followed

by singing and dancing. Rabbi Brull, a wellknown Torah personality and rebbe in YCC/ TA, spoke to the boys and told some wonderful, inspiring stories, ending a beautiful and exciting day. The seventh and eighth graders continued from the water park to a roller-blading rink before returning to school. Upon arrival, they too were served a barbeque seuda followed by singing and dancing. Rabbi Michoel Berkowitz, a 7th grade rebbe at YCC/ TA and a former Chemdas participant, addressed the boys, praising their diligence in learning, ending their all-day trip with a terrific, inspirational story and chizuk. The Chemdas program is a tremendous success, and we are proud of

the boys’ hard work reviewing many perakim of mishnayos over the year. It helps the boys get into the routine of reviewing their learning on their own, and ensures that they understand it. We are delighted with their efforts and success in Chemdas! Excited and driven, many boys are already preparing for next year’s Chemdas cycle; what beautiful aspirations!

Bais Yaakov Dolphin Club Chinese Auction to Benefit Bikur Cholim The Bais Yaakov Dolphin Club By Kidz for Kidz Chinese Auction benefitting Bikur Cholim is back by popular demand for its third annual extravaganza. The phenomenal success of the original sixth grade Dolphin Club has made giant “waves” in the Baltimore community. Its rippling effect has produced a “sea-quell” club of 7th grade BY girls known as Dolphin Club2. It is the new and exciting Dolphin Club2 that invites the entire community to their upcoming event.

The Chinese Auction will take place on Sunday, April 27th from 12:30-5:00 p.m. at the Rabbi Benjamin Steinberg Bais Yaakov Middle School campus on Smith Avenue. It promises to be a family-friendly fun day for women and children (girls of all ages, and boys 11 and under). There will be a boys’/men’s viewing on Friday, April 25th from 3-4 PM. Tickets range from .50-$5.00. Checks should be made out to Bais Yaakov, and the words “Dolphin Club” should

appear on all envelopes. Tickets can be purchased on-site or pre-ordered. For a list of prizes and pre-order forms visit, our media sponsor, and click on our ad. For more information please contact Mrs. Leeba Braun at (443) 956-7170 or Mrs. Brenda Weiss at (443) 604-8171.


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APRIL 10, 2014


Around the


Ohr Chadash Academy to Celebrate Yom Ha’atzmaut with its Annual Community Event on Tuesday, May 6th In honor of Israel’s 66th birthday, Ohr Chadash Academy will celebrate Yom Ha’atzmaut with its annual community event on Tuesday, May 6th. At last year’s event, over 350 people attended the program that was entitled, V’shavu Banim L’gvulam: They’re Coming Home. This year OCA is focusing on the development

of Tzionut (Zionism). Israel holds an important place in the Jewish mind and heart since the first Ivri, Avraham, was promised the land. The community is invited to join OCA at the Park Heights Jewish Community Center from 6:00-7:15 p.m. to show support for Israel and watch as every grade presents a different way to cele-

brate the birth of the country. Through different time periods, beginning in Tzfat and continuing through today’s state, the dream of the Jewish State will be unfolded. There will be songs, a short play, a stomp by the middle school boys, and the notto-be-missed Daglanut program by the middle school girls.

Harav Moshe Aharon Friedman from Yeshivas Mir Yerushalayim Gives Chizuk at Rabbi Berger’s Shul Baltimore was honored last Wednesday evening, March 2nd, to hear a shiur on Pesach delivered by Harav Hagaon Moshe Aharon Friedman from Yeshivas Mir Yerushalayim. Over 100 men turned up at Rabbi Berger’s shul to receive divrei hisorerus on the upcoming Yom Tov. In addition to the annual Shabbos of Chizuk, this shiur was the latest in a concerted effort by Yeshivas Mir to share its wonderful cadre of magidei shiur with our community as a mea-

sure of the Yeshiva’s hakaras hatov for the support it receives from Baltimore. Yeshivas Mir also offers printed weekly divrei Torah on the Parsha sent via email, as well as weekly shiurim on the Parsha and Gemara, and shiurim before yomim tovim, all via teleconference. These shiurim are open to the public. The next Mir Shabbos of Chizuk for Baltimore is tentatively scheduled for Parshas Bamidbar over Memorial Day Weekend, May 23-26, 2014.

Around the


Photo Credit: Jeff Cohen/Baltimore Jewish Life


R’ Yosef Mendelevich Gives Chizuk to the Entire Baltimore Community


APRIL 10, 2014

At Bais Yakov

At Bais Yakov

At Shomrei

At Shomrei

At Shomrei

At Maalot


APRIL 10, 2014


Around the


TA Student Goes to State Final of the National Geographic Bee Each year, thousands of schools in the United States participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society. The contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest

in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. Dovid Honick, a middle school student at Talmudical Academy, had the opportunity to compete in the State Finals for a potential place in the National Finals this past Friday, April 4th. Good luck Dovid!

Rabbi and Rebbetzin Yissachor Dov Eichenstein Celebrate Bar Mitzvah of their Eldest Son with the Community Last week, Mercaz Torah U’Tefilla and the Baltimore community had the opportunity to partake in the bar mitzvah of Shloimy Eichenstein, the eldest son of Rabbi and Rebbetzin Yissachor Dov Eichenstein mara d’asra of MTT and Zidichoiver Rav of Baltimore. This was a unique opportunity for most, as Baltimore doesn’t have many Chassidic Jews, and many community members have never participated in a bar mitzvah of a grandson of a Chassidic Rebbe. Planning for the bar mitzvah had been going on for quite some time, under the guidance of the Eichensteins and a dedicated group of askanim. As soon as people received the invi-

tations there was a buzz around the community. People were curious as to why the seudas bar mitzvah was to take place at shalosh seudos, when the actual bar mitzvah was on Sunday. After fielding many questions on this topic, the Rav spoke about it in shul. He went through the halachic ramifications and explained to the kehillah that in the Chassidic community, making a seudas bar mitzvah at shalosh seudos is quite common for those whose actual bar mitzvah falls out on a Sunday. On Erev Shabbos of Parshas Tazria a festive atmosphere permeated the shul. A large tent was erected to accommodate the large crowds ex-

pected for davening. As the guests arrived, the corner of Green Meadow and Baythorne resembled a Chassidic bungalow colony with young children running around, men wearing traditional Chassidic clothing, and the sounds of Yiddish filling the streets. There were many dignified guests who had traveled to Baltimore for the simcha, including the Rav’s parents; Rabbi and Rebbitzin Yehoshoua Heshel Eichenstein, the Zidichoiver Rebbe and Rebetzin of Chicago; the Rebbetzin’s parents, Rabbi and Mrs. Yaakov Elya Unsdorfer of Montreal; and many siblings who are rabbanim and mechanchim throughout the U.S. and Canada. Despite the cool, rainy weather, the tefillos both Friday night and Shabbos day were enhanced by the genuine Chassidic fervor and the many guests joining in the simcha. On Shabbos morning the Rav’s Chumash shiur was given by the Zidichoiver Rav of Marine Park, and we were privileged to hear divrei Torah before Mussaf from the Zidichoiver Rebbe of Chicago. A gala Kiddush followed davening with zemiros led by the Zidichoiv Choir. Hundreds of people flocked to the social hall of Shomrei Emunah for Mincha and shalosh seudos/the

seudas bar mitzvah. A long dais was graced by many community rabbanim and visiting family members. For many regular mispallelim it was quite similar to the shalosh seudos that we have every week but on a much larger and grander scale. Zemiros were once again led by the Zidichoiv choir, under the capable leadership of Zevy Daniel. After hearing divrei Torah from both zeides, we heard what might have been one of the shortest bar mitzvah speeches in history, as per the Chassidic minhag, Shloimy was interrupted by the joyous singing of his family. After Shabbos had already ended, Shloimy made a siyum on shas mishnayos. After the hadran, spirited dancing erupted with live music by Reuven Meth of the Segulah Orchestra. Many additional rabbanim came after Shabbos to participate in the simcha. After the dancing, the shalosh seudos tish was concluded with kah echsof and bentching. Following Maariv, the bar mitzvah concluded at around 10:15 with havdala made by the Zidichover Rebbe of Chicago. It was a truly remarkable Shabbos, and all those who participated eagerly look forward to sharing in future simchas of the Eichenstein mishpacha.


To vote for our community member

Ronald Rosenbluth


Be registered by June 3rd


Registered Democrat You can switch your affiliation from republican or independent to Democrat for this election and still vote your wish in general elections.


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To register or change your affiliation 1

Pick up form from Tov Pizza and return filled out form directly to Ronnie. The form will only take a few minutes, Thank you! By authority of Friends of Ronald Rosenbluth, Rafi Wassner, Treasurer

APRIL 10, 2014

JUNE 24, 2014



14 APRIL 10, 2014



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In News


Back From Seminary…Now What? fers a magnificent array of accredited courses taught by “the Best of Baltimore”; …numerous courses which are eligible for federal or Maryland state scholarships; …student advisors who work with each student to create a personalized program that meets each student’s individual, academic, professional, and financial needs; … on-site pre-requisite coursework for the most sought-after graduate and professional programs;

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vious 13 years and apply them to real-life situations. Myth #2: After 13 years of paying for our daughters’ education, it is time for them to either work to earn much needed income, or finish their education in the quickest, least expensive way possible. The Truth: Many of the decisions we make are predicated on two well-known equations: “risks vs. benefits” and “you get what you pay for.” While more years of schooling are without a doubt more costly than procuring an immediate job, the financial benefits of taking pre-professional courses to prepare for a more lucrative job in the future will most likely be far more financially expedient in the long-run than instant income. In today’s job market, a degree is usually the password to increased salary and benefits. While there are many “quick fixes” open to post-seminary students for degree acquisition, nothing compares to a degree comprised of solid classroom courses, both Kodesh and chol, taught by teachers chosen for their subject expertise, proper hashkafos, and exceptional character. The “best of all worlds” is when this can be combined with credit-granting tests and proper use of government grants so that our daughters’ education can be of the highest caliber with the least amount of financial drain. Myth #3: You can’t “have it all!” It’s impossible for students to get an excellent education; have instructors who are role models of inspiration, intelligence, and integrity; and emerge with a degree and pre-professional skills. The Truth: Welcome to MAALOT Baltimore! Our close to 1,000 graduates are the biggest testament to the fact that you can “have it all.” In MAALOT, we offer… …a Kodesh program that of-

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While we all spend so much time, effort, money, and tears sending our daughters to seminary in Eretz Yisroel, by the time we have to plan for their homecoming, our thoughts on what they should do next (and our pocketbooks) have been depleted. Yet, truth be told, the year following the uplifting and growth-oriented year they’ve spent b’Artzeinu haK’dosha is even more critical for their future development and advancement than their seminary year. This is the year that will, hopefully, be that critical bridge between the hashkafos hachaim they’ve internalized during their first-year seminary program and the “real life” decisions and plans that will determine how their batim will be built and how their families and lifestyles will be financed. There are so many options and so many myths that abound about this post-seminary year. Let’s examine the most prevalent myths with the hope that we can dispel some erroneous notions, and make you an educated and far-sighted “consumer.” Myth #1: After 12 years of Bais Yaakov-type schooling, and a year in Eretz Yisroel devoted solely to Kodesh classes, our daughters should now have a complete Kodesh education. The Truth: As with every aspect of our ruchni lives, growth is an ongoing process. When we stop learning, we stop growing; when we stop growing, we stagnate. Especially now, at a time when many serious, life-altering decisions will have to be made, our daughters need not only practical, grounded hashkafos, but relationships with rabbeim, teachers, and mentors to whom they can turn for ongoing advice and direction. The second year post-high school is the most critical time for students to be educated on how to take the limudim of the pre-

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The Week China’s Ocean Kingdom Biggest in the World

Baby Accused of Attempted Murder in Pakistan

Pakistan may not be the most just society and a story that has come out of that country this week only highlights its broken legal system. Nine-month-old baby Mohammad Musa along with his father and other family members were booked for throwing rocks at gas company officials in the working-class Ahata Thanedaran neighborhood on February 1,

APRIL 10, 2014

Looking for an awesome chol hamoed trip? How about making it gigantic and heading over to Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, the world’s largest aquarium? The Chinese aquatic theme park took three years to complete but the 125-acres are well worth it. Located on Hengqin Island near Macao, in China’s southeastern Guangdong province, the destination is expected to accommodate millions of visitors a year. And it’s really big: According to Guinness World Records, the attraction snagged five world records, including largest aquarium. But it doesn’t stop there. It can also boast bragging rights for largest underwater viewing dome, largest aquarium tank, largest aquarium window, and largest acrylic panel — included in the whale shark exhibit’s walk-through viewing tunnel. The aquarium holds a whopping 5.99 million gallons of saltwater. All told, the park’s seven themed areas contain an incredible 12.87 million gallons of saltwater and freshwater. There’s no way you’ll be bored here. Chimelong Ocean Kingdom “will be the first great Asian theme park combining animal exhibits, themed entertainment shows, and thrill rides,” PGAV Destinations, the park’s lead strategist, planner, designer, and product developer, noted in a statement. Sounds like Disney? That’s not a coincidence. The developer, Guangdong Chimelong Group, slated it to be “the Orlando of China.” The park’s aquatic attractions will include

create viewing interactions between people and animals,” said PGAV Destinations VP and project lead Al Cross. How’s that for an amazing trip this Pesach?



a whale shark exhibit, penguins, and polar bears, along with the more exotic pan-tropical spotted dolphins and Chinese white dolphins. Other entertainment options include a “4D” movie theater; Asia’s first “winged coaster,” Flying Over the Rainforest, and a roller coaster that also combines a live polar bear exhibit. While that might sound like an odd choice, it’s actually “one of the best efforts in Asia to

In News



APRIL 10, 2014


The Week the family’s lawyer Chaudhry Irfan Sadiq told AFP on Friday. Amazingly, Inspector Kashif Muhammad, who attended the alleged crime scene and has since been suspended, wrote in his report that it was a case of attempted murder. On Thursday, the accused appeared in a packed courtroom. Musa was seen crying as his grandfather Muhammad Yasin held him on his shoulder. Yasin fed him from his bottle as he answered reporters’ questions. “Everyone in the court was saying, ‘How can such a small child be implicated in any case’? What kind of police do we have?” the 50-year-old laborer said. The charge is in direct contradiction with Pakistan’s minimum age of criminal responsibility, which was raised from seven to 12 years in 2013 except in terrorism cases. Yasin accused the police of fabricating the charges because they were colluding with a rival party who wanted to see the accused evicted from their land and had obtained an order to remove their gas connections. “The police and gas company officials came without any notice and started removing gas meters from houses. Residents started protesting and blocked the road but ended the protest when senior police officers arrived in the area and assured them that no injustice would be done,” Yasin stated. “But later we found out that cases have been filed

against us.”

In News “It’s not common for babies to be accused but it is common for other family members to be accused,” he said. “What happens then is that vendettas are going on so everyone gets picked up and gets chucked in jail,” he added. Shoaib Suddle, a retired police chief, added that the system operates via ‘first information reports’ that date back to British colonial times, which give too much weight to allegations made by accusers. “The moment they are able to file a complaint, accusers expect that without any evidence people should be locked up and the investigation should follow, whereas the world over it is the other way around,” Suddle said.

The Lighter Side Thankfully, the appearance in court on Friday ended positively. Judge Rafaqat Ali Qamar ordered the inspector to be suspended and granted the child bail, though he will have to appear at the next hearing on April 12. Even so, Sadiq, the family’s lawyer, rightfully insisted that the charges be dropped against the child. “The court should have simply referred the minor’s case to the High Court to drop the charges against the innocent child and acquit him from the case,” Sadiq told AFP. “This case also exposes the incompetence of our police force and the way they are operating.” Feisal Naqvi, a supreme court lawyer said the naming of family members in police reports was a common tactic employed by complainants in order to exert pressure on parties with whom they were involved in a dispute.

blocked the popular site two weeks ago, after some of the users suggested that the government was corrupted. Turkey’s prime minister vowed to “rip out the roots” of Twitter for allowing the postings. The government also blocked access to YouTube following the leak of an audio recording of a high-level security meeting discussing a possible intervention in Syria. The moves sparked international criticism and the ban was challenged in several Turkish courts. The Constitution Court eventually ruled against the Twitter ban. However, the high court decision was limited to Twitter. Access to YouTube remained blocked.

Shechita Back in Poland

The kosher world was outraged two years ago when kosher slaughtering of animals was outlawed in Poland. While shechita is still forbidden for commercial purposes, the Polish parliament has ruled that, for religious purposes, the practice will be deemed legal. ”The Sejm did the right thing by clarifying the murky legal situation of kosher slaughter in Poland and by backing shechita for local communities’ consumption,” said World Jewish Congress CEO Robert Singer. “We hope this statement will help to put to rest the controversy over shechita— which Jews hold to be a crucial religious freedom.” Last July, the Sejm voted against a proposal to exempt kosher and halal slaughter from the requirement to stun the animals prior to killing them.    

Turkey Tweeting Again Turkey’s highest court overruled a recent ban of the social media website Twitter this week. The government

Twitter welcomed the lifting of the ban and European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes tweeted that unblocking YouTube was a “good move for free speech.” Other European countries such as Sweden and Germany have also criticized the ban saying it is a serious violation of freedom of speech.  Sweden’s foreign minister Carl Bildt even went as far as calling the ban “stupid.” Bildt, an avid Twitter user, said the ban “isn’t working and [is] also backfiring heavily.”  Despite the ban, many tech-savvy users, including President Abdullah Gul, had found ways to continue tweeting and posting videos on YouTube.  

Daylight Saving Thwarts Bomber

The “spring forward” this year may have saved many lives thanks to a not-too-timely car bomber in Ireland. An unidentified bomber was seen fleeing from the wreckage of a ruined Volvo SUV in Dublin, while “dripping in blood” after the device that was attached to the vehicle went off early.

The Week

An Israeli security source says that the Assad regime used a nonlethal chemical weapon as recently as on March 27 on the outskirts of Damascus. The source said that he could confirm claims made by Syrian rebels and doctors, that a substance was used on rebel fighters in Harasta, an outlying region of the Syrian capital. He adds that the chemical “neutralizes [threats] but does not kill.” A second alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime occurred in the same area within days of the first attack, according to Syrian opposition sources, though the security source said he could not confirm that additional report. According to the New York-based website Syria Deeply, which interviewed doctors on the ground in Syria, in one instance 25 fighters were wounded.

Putin Is Single

Vladimir Putin has a lot going on in his life both politically and personally. The Russian president seems really good at severing ties. Last week, he and his wife, Lyudmila, of 30 years

finalized their divorce. The Russian leader can now enter the dating scene once again. The Kremlin appears to have managed the official confirmation of Mr, Putin’s divorce to limit its impact on the Russian public at large. In true Putin style, the news was strategically announced by state-owned news agency Itar-Tass on Tuesday. Aside from the official announcement, the media barely mentioned the news. Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed for Russian media on Wednesday that the divorce had been completed. Back in June, when the parents of two girls in their late 20s announced they were separating, a similar damage control method was used. The two appeared in public after a long time out of the spotlight together then they were asked on news channel Rossia 24 about a ballet they had just seen. Without warning, the conversation turned to their personal lives and their plans for a “civilized divorce.” At the time, Mr. Putin said, “It was a joint decision: we hardly see each other, each of us has our own life.” Lyudmila, we have two words for you: mazal tov.

Israel Billionaires Buy in Israel Israel has certainly come a long way in recent years. According to a survey by UK-based Beauchamp Estates and market intelligence group Dataloft, Tel Aviv is among the most popular spots in Western Europe for billionaires to buy homes. “Among Western Europe’s capital cities, London is the favorite billionaire property hot spot with 67 billionaires living in the city, ahead of Paris on 25 and Geneva on 18,” the survey said. Tel Aviv came next with 17 billionaires. What makes Tel Aviv so attractive? “Seventy-five percent of all bil-

lionaires have a home in a city crucial to their financial, banking and business interests, while most also own a dream holiday/weekend home where they retreat from the pressures of business activities and city life,” the report said. It was not clear if the Tel Aviv billionaires’ estates tended to be their primary residences or one of their vacation homes. The typical billionaire has four homes around the world.

APRIL 10, 2014

Assad Still Using Chemical Weapons

Despite the assertion by the security source that the chemical is nonlethal, some reports suggested that four people were killed in the March 27 attack. The Syria Deeply website cited the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), a group of Syrian-American doctors and surgeons traveling in and out of Syria, as condemning what it described as a “poisonous gas attack” in Harasta. “Symptoms suffered by patients included hallucination, accelerated pulse, trouble breathing and, in some cases, suffocation,” according to SAMS. Syria has destroyed the majority of its chemical weapons production centers and is in the midst of transporting chemical weapons from storage sites to ships in Latakia that remove the substances and destroy them, according to Israeli security assessments. The disarmament efforts, which have been stepped up in recent weeks, are being managed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Israel is expected to closely monitor the situation to try and see whether President Bashar Assad attempts to secretly keep some chemical weapons. Prior to the disarmament program, Syria had amassed the world’s largest stockpile of VX nerve agents, Sarin and mustard gas. In August 2013, a chemical attack on a rebel area north of Damascus left 1,400 civilians dead. The massacre led to a Russian- brokered disarmament agreement that saw Assad agree to give up the unconventional arms in exchange for avoiding a US military strike.


Clocks in Ireland were turned ahead that night. “It would appear that the bomber got his timings wrong. It could be a case where he didn’t put his watch forward and the timer went off too soon,” a local report suggested. After the explosion, the man was seen getting into a taxi. “We are appealing for anyone who might have picked up a person in the New Street and Clanbrassil Street area shortly after 11pm who was quite obviously suffering, to come forward,” said Supt. Dave Taylor of Ireland’s Garda press office. “It was a very extensive explosion and it was a very frightening experience for the people on Long Lane,” Taylor said. “It is quite obvious that the car was the object of this attack.” Even for terrorists, timing is everything…   

In News


Tel Aviv’s share may seem significant, but it’s really just a fraction; globally there are over 2,170 billionaires. Of those, 60% made their cash themselves, while 20% inherited their wealth and another 20% had wealth from both inheritance and their own doing. While billionaires surely stimulate the economy when they spend or bring business to Israel, foreign investment in the local real estate market is one of the drivers that have pushed prices high, alongside a shortage of supply. According to the Bank of Israel, home prices increased 60% above general inflation since 2008.

IDF Captain: “We Treat All Victims Equally’

The Israeli army is regularly painted by the media as a heartless oppressor of Palestinian Arabs. But the reality on the ground more often than not simply does not support that view. For instance, this week a Palestinian minibus was involved in a traffic


APRIL 10, 2014


The Week accident in central Judea (the southern part of the “West Bank”). Israeli army forces stationed in the area were notified, and did not hesitate to dispatch a medical team to the scene. The four Israeli army medics provided care to each of the 20 Palestinian bus passengers. Red Crescent ambulances arrived a short time later and transferred the wounded to area hospitals. In severe cases, the army medics will often transfer Palestinian victims to more advanced medical centers in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.

young drivers admitted to occasionally speeding, talking on a cell phone. “The country cannot shirk its responsibility in terms of traffic accidents, and troubling data about the involvement of young drivers in road accidents demands a combination of forces between the Transportation and Education ministries,” Or Yarok CEO Shmuel Aboav pointed out.

Cpt. Karin Yamin, the officer in charge of the unit that responded to the accident, was quoted on the IDF blog, “For the soldiers in my unit, saving lives is a priority. Whether the patients are Israeli, Palestinian, Christian or Druze, we take care of them all in the same way. We also provide equipment to Red Crescent ambulances, especially when we see that they lack medical equipment.” Cpt. Yamin said the Palestinians she and her soldiers treated were very thankful for the care they received at the hands of the Israelis.

To collect the survey data, Or Yarok questioned 3,146 young people in 24 communities around the country. A closer examination of the results indicates that 50 percent of respondents admitted to sometimes driving too fast, 49% admitted to sometimes talking on the phone while driving without a hands-free device and 47% admitted that they sometimes neglect to give the right of way to pedestrians, according to the survey. Additionally, only 16% of young people indicated that they believe that not wearing a seatbelt is dangerous, while only 26% said they believe that talking on a cellphone behind the wheel without a proper headset is hazardous. In addition, only 24% of respondents indicated that they believe failing to yield to pedestrians is dangerous, the report said. “We must increase the education and information among young people within the framework of school about the danger of speeding and talking on a phone without a headset,” Aboav said. “Education and implementation of positive messages on the subject of road safety at a young age will bear fruit at a later age.”

Dangerous Driving in Israel According to traffic safety organization Or Yarok, roughly half of young Israeli drivers are partaking in dangerous driving behaviors. The statement is only highlighted by the fact that in 2013, 38 young drivers— those between ages 17 and 24—died in road accidents; in 2012, that number was less than half, with 18 young drivers losing their lives. Approximately, one in every two

In News Only 7% of Israelis Believe in Peace Israelis are an outspoken people but they don’t seem too optimistic about US Secretary of State John Kerry being the ambassador of peace. Only seven percent of Jewish Israelis believe there is a strong chance of Kerry reaching an agreement between Israel and the Palestinians in upcoming months, according to a poll sponsored by the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) and Tel Aviv University. Interestingly, this monthly Peace Index poll was taken last week on Sunday and Monday, before Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas turned to United Nations institutions and diplomatic talks broke down amid mutual recriminations. Twelve percent of Israelis think chances for a deal are high, including seven percent among Jews and 35% among Israeli Arabs. The percentage of Israelis who believe chances are low was 87% but 92% of Israeli Jews and 62% of Israeli Arabs. Nevertheless, 65% of Israelis favor conducting the talks, including 62% of Israeli Jews and 80% of Israeli Arabs. Only 31% of Israelis oppose the negotiations, with 25% of Israeli Jews and 15% of Israeli Arabs supporting them. Six hundred Israelis representing a representative sample of the adult population were polled.

Try to Boycott This

Despite calls for boycott, sanction, and divest Israeli products, some things are just too hard to include in the movement. It seems as if diamonds are Israel’s best friends, as one of the hardest natural materials on earth seems unbreakable when it comes to the BDS movement.

“Internationally, from America’s viewpoint, we’ve never had a single question of whether it’s an Israeli-cut or Israeli-traded diamond,” Reuven Kaufman, president of New York’s central diamond exchange, the Diamond Dealer’s Club, said in Ramat Gan on Monday. Kaufman was in town to kick off the week-long US & International Diamond Week at the Israel Diamond Exchange, which is the world’s largest. During the course of the week, some 400 diamond suppliers will display over $1 billion-worth of the precious stones. Israel Diamond Exchange president Shmuel Schnitzer says part of the reason there is no problem is because all of Israel’s diamond trading, cutting, and polishing activities remain squarely within the Green Line, though many Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions advocates do not differentiate. Additionally, Israel’s diamond trade crosses other unexpected barriers. “We do have relationships with Arab countries, but please allow me not to elaborate,” Schnitzer said. Italian jewelry designer and manufacturer Roberto Coin said he had sold Israeli diamonds in Dubai without any questions. “Business has no religion,” he said, “But we’d trade more and more without the politics.” When Dubai’s Diamond exchange was accepted to the World Federation of Diamond Bourses – of which Schnitzer was also the president at the time – it was on condition that it would not bar trading from any other exchanges. Last year, Kaufman said, he showed up with a group of Hassidic dealers from New York, complete with black hats and side locks. They received only the best treatment. One of the reasons it would be hard to boycott Israeli diamonds is that so many of them make their way through the country’s exchanges in some way or another. Israel turns over about $28 billion in diamonds a year. The value of exported diamonds is so significant (about a fifth of total industrial exports) that the government reports its

The Week

Hate waiting for your cellphone to charge? It seems that Israel has the answer. An Israeli startup said on Tuesday that it was working to develop a bio-organic system that can recharge a smartphone battery in just a mere 30 seconds. Cellphone users rejoice! Tel Aviv-

National Senate Report Says CIA Deceived Public on Interrogation Program

A report by the Senate Intelligence Committee concludes that the CIA deceived the government and the public about major features of its cruel interrogation program. Apparently, some key details about the harshness of its methods were covered up. Additionally, the intelligence agency may have overstated the significance of plots and prisoners and claimed credit for

critical intelligence that detainees had in fact surrendered before they were subjected to the severe methods. The report does not recommend new administrative punishment or further criminal inquiry into a program that the Justice Department has investigated repeatedly but it may gain media attention and revive the unresolved public debate. “The CIA described [its program] repeatedly both to the Department of Justice and eventually to Congress as getting unique, otherwise unobtainable intelligence that helped disrupt terrorist plots and save thousands of lives,” said one U.S. official briefed on the report. “Was that actually true? The answer is no.” The 6,300-page report that remains classified is described as condemning revelations against the CIA. A spokesman for the CIA said the agency had not yet seen a final version of the report and was, therefore, unable to comment about one of the most con-

troversial periods in CIA history. The program was dismantled by President Obama in 2009.

Most Miserable Cities in America Feeling down in the dumps? Well, maybe you should stay away from these cities.

A new study by Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index lists the most unhappy cities in the nation. The

APRIL 10, 2014

Charging your Phone in 30 Seconds

based StoreDot’s prototype battery and charger is currently being tested with Samsung’s Galaxy phones, but the startup’s founder and CEO Doron Myersdorf told AFP that a product compatible with all makes of smartphone should be on the market by 2016. He said that at the core of the new technology was the use of peptides, compounds containing amino acids. “We are modifying the surface of the electrodes with bio-organic compounds, peptides, to increase the chemical reaction to produce extra energy,” he explained. Myersdorf added the breakthrough “allows us to avoid the most annoying aspect of our smartphones, of which we are demanding more and more, and to ensure that we have a charged telephone all day.” This can’t come out soon enough.

In News


figures sans diamonds to ensure the gems do not skew the values. While Israel was once a base for its cutting and polishing prowess, a significant portion of that work has migrated to India and several Eastern “tigers” such as Laos and Vietnam. Yet even there, the 1,400 companies in Israel still do major operations. In fact, for every five of the 20,000 people employed in the diamond sector in Israel, there are seven employed by Israeli companies abroad. Even abroad, Israel still provides the expertise, technology, security, and connections to facilitate the trade. Israel’s influence on the global diamond trade is so pronounced, said Scnitzer, that around the world, diamond deals are closed with a Hebrew phrase meaning luck and a blessing: mazal u’bracha. The phrase, adds Kaufman, is more sacred than a contract. “If one person goes back on his word, every person in the boursa knows he’s gone back on his word, he’s finished in the industry,” he said.







APRIL 10, 2014


The Week results factored in income, physical health, and overall well-being. So which cities in the U.S. are pure misery? Well, Evansville, IN, came in at number ten. There are only 22.2% of adults there with a college degree and a whopping 29.4% of adults smoke. The median household income in this small town? Only $44,887. Next of the list was Mobile, AL, followed by Shreveport-Bosseir City, LA. Columbus, GA, came in at number seven. Citizens there have an average median household income of only $42,972 and 27.4% of adults are addicted to their cigarettes. Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX, Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton, NC, and Spartanburg, SC, came in next on the list. Redding, CA, was the third most unhappy city in the nation. Only 18.2% of adults have college degrees; the average household income is a sad $45,442. Charleston, WV, was the second most unhappy place in the nation. And where is the epicenter of unhappiness in the United States? Seems like you should stay away from the Huntington-Ashland area in West Virginia. The median household income is only $39,160, 19% of adults have a college degree, and 29.2% of adults are smokers.

Orthodontists Make More Money than CEOs

Parents of teenagers probably won’t find it surprising that in the U.S., orthodontists in America earn more money than the average CEO.

The average U.S. orthodontist earns $196,270, while the average CEO makes $178,400. Even though this may sound like a surprising statistic, it is important to realize that the nation’s 248,760 chief executives include many small companies, which is probably the reason for the major discrepancy between orthodontists and CEOs. This information was garnered from figures released by the Labor Department last Tuesday listed the nation’s best-paying occupations according to a ranking of 821 jobs tracked by the government. The Labor Department calculates wages as a worker’s base pay plus tips, commissions and bonuses tied to quotas or job completion. The figure excludes stock and year-end bonuses, overtime pay, clothing and tool allowances plus any other perks. The study also found that the highest paying profession in the country is for anesthesiologists who earn an average of $235,070 a year. Surgeons have the second-highest average salary at $233,150. Now we know we’re I’m going to school.

Supreme Court Strikes Down Total Contribution Limits

Last week, the Supreme Court voided limits in federal law on the total campaign contributions that individual donors can donate to candidates, political parties, and political action committees. The justices said in a 5-4 vote that

In News Americans have a right to give the legal maximum to candidates for Congress and president, as well as to parties and PACs, without worrying that they will violate the law. For 2013 and 2014, the ceiling was set to $123,200, which includes a separate $48,600 cap on contributions to candidates. But their decision does not undermine limits on individual contributions to candidates for president or Congress, now $2,600 an election. Chief Justice John Roberts announced the decision, which split the court’s liberal and conservative justices. Roberts said the aggregate limits do not act to prevent corruption, the rationale the court has upheld as justifying contribution limits. The overall limits “intrude without justification on a citizen’s ability to exercise ‘the most fundamental First Amendment activities,’” Roberts said, quoting from the court’s seminal 1976 campaign finance ruling in the case Buckley v. Valeo. Justice Clarence Thomas agreed with the outcome of the case, but wrote separately to say that he would have gone further and wiped away all contribution limits. The limits were originally enacted by Congress after the Watergate scandal.

Virgin America Rules the Skies

For the second year running, Virgin America has been listed as the highest-quality major airline in the United States. The privately owned airline – founded by billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson – has only been operating in the U.S. since 2007

and has come out on top both times it has been included in the Airline Quality Ratings’ analysis. “Virgin has great policies, they’re pretty much on time … they’re a great system,” says Dr. Dean Headley, one of the study’s co-authors. “But I suspect as they grow and their system becomes more complex, they’ll face more challenges.” The study looks at data that the airlines are mandated by law to report to the U.S. Department of Transportation over the last 12 months, focusing on four criteria: On-time arrivals, denied boardings, mishandled bags, and customer complaints. The final overall ranking is calculated as a weighted average of all four scores. Ruling the skies is not easy but Virgin America managed to post strong numbers in most of the AQR’s criteria: The airline had 82.1% of all flights arrive on time in 2013, compared with the industry average of 78.4%; it mishandled 0.97 bags per 1,000 passengers, well below the average of 3.21; and it denied boarding to just 0.04 ticketed passengers per 10,000, significantly below the average of 0.89. Not all was roses in the report. The airline’s number of customer complaints – 1.28 per 100,000 passengers– came in slightly high, just above the industry average of 1.13 per 100,000. But full-price and premium airlines like Virgin tend to attract more complaints than low-cost economy carriers, so Virgin might have taken a hit on customer complaints because its passengers expect more than those flying other airlines. The more you pay, the more you like to complain. The second-ranked airline in terms of overall quality was low-cost airline JetBlue, which posted better-than-average performance in terms of denied boardings and customer complaints. Hawaiian Airlines came in third place, followed by Delta Air Lines and Alaska Airlines. The last-place finisher, 15thranked American Eagle, came in well below average in all four measured criteria; 72.1% on-time arrivals, 1.14 denied boardings per 10,000 passen-

The Week

When the Red Sox visited the White House last week, David Ortiz presented President Obama with a Red Sox jersey, and—in what appeared to be a spontaneous gesture—took a “selfie” with the president. After snapping the picture, Ortiz, who is nicknamed “Big Papi,” said, “Cha-ching!” It turns out that the “selfie” was anything but spontaneous and was definitely “cha-ching”; Ortiz recently signed an endorsement deal with Samsung to be its “MLB social media insider.” Shortly after Ortiz took

A Non-Partisan Presidential Game Sports surpasses all boundaries— even political ones. On Monday night, the NCAA men’s basketball championship game got some pretty important visitors. Noted college basketball fan Bill Clinton and noted Texan George W. Bush watched as a crafty veteran UConn team held off a flustered freshman-led Kentucky. The former presidents sat right next to each other, even though politically they stand across the aisle, next to Jerry Jones, owner of the Cowboys and creator of the monstrous dome in which the game was played.

Clinton and George H.W. Bush have appeared on many occasions together, both social and charitable, but

Dubya and Bill haven’t made significant public appearances outside of formal round-up-the-presidents occasions. Clearly, though, they can bond over knowledge of secrets that the rest of us can only imagine—especially the secrets of sports. The crowd got to see the presidential duo in larger-than-life form when they showed up on the big screen. Despite their important titles, numbers 42 and 43 weren’t the only big names at the game. Cowboys Jason Witten and Tony Romo, sat right in front of the former presidents and head coach Jason Garrett in the next row back. Thankfully, as far as we know, no selfies were snapped. Whoo.

Maharaj’s website, which says the mission was founded in 1983 and has spiritual centers around the world, has thanked its followers for standing by the mission while the guru is “meditating.” Perhaps his followers should keep a microwave nearby…just in case he needs some defrosting when he is done with his meditation.

“I Hate My Job…I Hate My Job”

That’s Odd Frozen Meditation When Indian guru Ashutosh Maharaj died two months ago, his followers refused to accept the sad news. They were convinced that he will come back to life, which is why rather than bury him, they put him in a freezer. They now say that he is in a state of samadhi – the deepest form of meditation, according to his believers –and is sending them messages. His followers believe that when he ends his meditation, he will step out of the freezer.

Hate your job? Here’s one way to tell the world. A lot of strange things happen in the courtroom. One of the stranger things to happen in recent courtroom drama is the botched taking of records by an alcoholic stenographer. In a bizarre outrage, Daniel Kochanski, 42, repeatedly typed, “I hate my job, I hate my job, I hate my job” instead of the trial dialogue of some high profile criminal trials he was supposed to be recording. The peculiar antics wreaked havoc on some 30 Manhattan court cases, sources said, and now officials are scrambling to repair the damage. One high-level source said his “gibberish” typing might have jeopardized hardwon convictions by giving criminals the chance to claim crucial evidence is missing. Kochanski’s botched transcripts include the 2010 mortgage-fraud trial

APRIL 10, 2014

Big Papi’s Selfie Frowned Upon by White House

the photo and tweeted it, Samsung retweeted it, saying that the company was “thrilled to see the special, historic moment David Ortiz captured with his Galaxy Note 3 during his White House visit.” The White House was not happy about the stunt and indicated that it is now considering banning all “selfies” with the president. White House Spokesman Jay Carney said, “I can tell you that as a rule the White House objects to attempts to use the president’s likeness for commercial purposes.  And we certainly object in this case.” So all of you who have selfies with the president better scrap your plans.

In News


gers, 5.90 mishandled bags per 1,000 passengers, and 1.7 customer complaints per 100,000 passengers. Best to avoid them on your next flight. Industry-wide, this year was a good year to fly the friendly skies. Domestic airlines improved their performance year over year in two of the four analyzed categories: The number of denied boardings fell from .97 to .89 per 10,000 passengers, and customer complaints dropped from 1.43 to 1.13 per 100,000 passengers. Overall the airlines have improved their quality significantly since the industry posted its worst-ever year in the AQR back in 2007. “Airlines, on the whole, do a pretty good job with an extremely complex system,” says Headley. “But it all boils down to what happened on your flight today.” Fasten your seatbelts folks. Let’s hope for a not-so-bumpy landing.



APRIL 10, 2014


The Week of Aaron Hand, who was also convicted of trying to hire a hit man to take out a witness against him. A source familiar with the case said Kochanski’s transcripts of that trial were a total mess. “It should have been questions and answers — instead it was gibberish,” the source said. Claudia Trupp of the Center for Appellate Litigation said her office was handling the appeals in Hand’s and nine other cases. “I never had a situation where a single court reporter was responsible for so much damage,” she said. It took court officials long enough to catch on to Kochanski’s strange recordings. The 43-year-old was fired in March 2012 for misconduct. Sources said the Manhattan DA’s Office arrested Kochanski and forced him to try to make sense of his shorthand typing. But that effort apparently failed. Judges have been holding “reconstruction hearings” at which everyone involved in a case has to testify about what they remember. “This situation is terrible for everybody,” Trupp said. “It’s very difficult to come up with a sufficient record based on everybody’s recollection years after the event.” In an interview, Kochanski denied screwing up his transcripts. “I never typed gibberish. I always did my job 100 percent. I was let go because of substance abuse,” he said. “I’m in recovery. July will be one year I’m clean,” he said. Clean from typing, I’m sure.

Every Ivy League Wants Him The dream of many college applicants is to get accepted to an Ivy League school. A 17-year-old applicant from Long Island has seen that dream come true eight times. What does it take to get into all eight Ivy League colleges? A 2,250 SAT score, straight-A grades — and an awesome essay.

Kwasi Enin wowed admissions officers when he wrote about how his love of music sparked his “intellectual curiosity.” “I directly developed my capacity to think creatively around problems due to the infinite possibilities in music,” wrote Enin, who has played viola for nine years. Enin also explained how his music has helped him play a role in his community and learn leadership values. The smart teenager made sure to note that his education has just begun. “Although I hope that my future career is in medicine, I love that I still have much to learn about and from the world of music.” The senior at William Floyd High School applied to 12 colleges because he feared he wouldn’t get into a single one. He now must choose from the eight Ivies — Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton and Yale — which boast acceptance rates of 14 percent to 5.9 percent. He also was accepted into four non-Ivy schools: Duke, Stony Brook University, SUNY Geneseo and Binghamton University. I wish I had to make that type of decision.      

Tallest Wheel Starts Turning

The world’s tallest Ferris wheel opened in Las Vegas, Nevada, last week. At 550 feet high, the High Roller is sure to become a stop for tourists

In News from all over the world. It has 1,120 seats, so let’s hope there is enough interest to keep the thing rolling for a while. The wheel was built by Caesars Entertainment and cost just over $550 million. Planners hope to keep it open seven days a week, 365 days a year. This is no ordinary wheel; the first wedding to be performed on the wheel has already been booked for this summer. Each of the 28 cabins can fit up to 40 people. They each weigh 44,000 pounds and have over 300 square feet of glass. At the platform, employees load riders onto the wheel that never stops moving. The wheel rotates at .89 feet per second, which is about half of the average walking speed.

The entire ride takes about a half hour. If you’re afraid of heights, it can feel like a whole lot more!

Skinny People Can have their Cake and Eat it Too

A new study has confirmed what people who struggle with their weight have long suspected: that two individuals can eat the same things and exercise the same amount, and one will remain thin and one will be, well, not as thin. “What is different about these people?” asked Dr. Colleen Novak, a biological sciences professor at Kent State University whose research focuses on the neuroscience of obesity. Kent State University researchers say that the current obesity epidemic — about one-third of adults are overweight and one-third is obese — is likely the result of our lifestyles but genes also play a part. To see how genetics could impact obesity, researchers bred rats with specific genes that were linked with either high activity or laziness. They found that those rats known to be more active, based on their genetic breeding history, would burn more calories when exercising than fat rats doing the same amount of exercise. The active rats were also more likely to move around frequently during the day. “It’s not just the fact that they’re more active that matters but also that they are burning more calories during activity,” Novak said, noting that these extra calories are being “wasted” by the thin rats as heat. “What is different in the brains of these rats that make them more active versus less active?” she asked. Researchers found thin rats produced more receptors that would stimulate the area of the brain that would cause them to choose to be active. Fat rats on the other hand produced less of these receptors. Thus, Novak told the university’s news site that the fat rats don’t move around less because they’re overweight but because of their brain function. Researchers are not yet sure why thin rats produce more of these receptors that would lead to activity than fat rats. None of this is to say that rats predisposed to be overweight can’t avoid this tendency. Conversely, rats with genes that would suggest they should

The Week

Tip Touches Deliveryman’s Heart

A pizza deliveryman in Portland, OR, received a very pleasant surprise after not being tipped by a customer. “It was just a regular delivery and I didn’t get tipped, so whatever,” Andrew Shaffer, a Papa John’s employee of five years, recalled. A hardworking employee, he didn’t call attention to the measly $23 dollars he was handed for the total $22.67 tab, choosing to just grin and keeping moving to his next stop. The next day, however, something unexpected happened when Schaffer, 25, walked into work. Without missing a beat, his boss asked if he remembered making a delivery to the address that stiffed him. “He gave me their address and I was like, ‘Yes,’ because I remembered they didn’t tip me,” Schaffer explained. The couple had apparently stopped by Papa John’s “and I was worried because I didn’t think I was rude to them,” said Schaffer, unsure of why else they’d make the effort to come in to the store. Much to Schaffer’s surprise, it was quite the contrary. “He [Schaffer’s

More than Just a Cup of Tea

On Tuesday, a Shanghai collector bought a rare Ming Dynasty cup that’s touted as the “holy grail” of China’s art world at a Hong Kong auction, smashing the previous world record price for Chinese porcelain. The price tag? A whopping $36 millino. Liu Yiqian was the winning bidder

for the small white cup, which measures just 8 centimeters (3.1 inches) in diameter and is more than 500 years old. The vessel is known as a “chicken cup” because it’s decorated with a rooster and hen tending to their chicks. The vessel was made during the reign of the Ming Dynasty’s Chenghua Emperor, who ruled from 1465 to 1487. Sotheby’s said there are only 17 such cups in existence, with four in private hands and the rest in museums. “There’s no more legendary object in the history of Chinese porcelain,” said Nicholas Chow, Sotheby’s deputy chairman for Asia. “This is really the holy grail when it comes to Chinese art.” For such a prized item, bidding was limited to a handful of wealthy collectors and when the winning bid was hammered down at HK$250 million

($32.2 million), the standing-room only crowd broke into applause. The auction house’s commission brought the total to HK$281.2 million ($36.1 million). A pre-sale estimate had estimated a maximum sale price of HK$300 million. The previous record for Chinese porcelain was set in 2010 when a gourd-shaped Qianlong vase sold for $32.4 million. The cup would likely go on display in Liu’s Long Museum in Shanghai, which he and his wife, Wang Wei, opened in 2012. Unbelievably, Liu is a middle-school dropout who drove a cab before becoming a multimillionaire. Forbes estimates his fortune at $900 million, making him the 200th richest person in China. How’s that for a sweet cup of tea?

APRIL 10, 2014


boss] handed me a card and it said, ‘A Thank You Note’ across the front,” the shocked employee recalled. “And I opened it up and it totally made my day. I had never gotten anything like that from a customer in six years of delivering.” The handmade card from the couple had a stamped cupcake on the front, and inside contained an additional $20 bill to make up for their tipping miscalculations the night prior. “We would like to apologize for our impaired math skills and thank you for the work you do,” the note read. “We appreciate it immensely.” The humbled deliveryman, who is delivering pizzas to pay his way through college, sincerely appreciates the customers – signed Tom and Jenn – going out of their way to acknowledge his efforts. “It takes a little work to do something like that,” he said. “They realized it, and the very next day, to take action and do something like that was so great.”       You know what they say…better late than never, especially when it comes to money. 


be thin won’t necessarily be thin in reality. “In the bigger picture, [the study] would also imply that any advantage these intrinsically lean people have in staying thin may be canceled out if they are not physically active,” Novak said. Bottom line? When you’re staring at that extra piece of cake this Pesach, just eat it.

In News



m a r c h 2 1 , 2013


The Jewish home n


APRIL 10, 2014



1. Keep your expectations realistic. You can’t do it all! After all the work that goes into preparing for Pesach it would be wonderful if everyone at the seder, from the youngest to the oldest, could be riveted, inspired, and engaged the entire time. How wonderful it would be if the high school children could join in stimulating discussion, the preschoolers could sing all their songs and the adults could kvell with nachas while enjoying a spiritual infusion. You may or may not be able to pull it off depending on the dynamic of your family, but one thing is certain. If your expectations are realistic, you will get the most out of your seder. If they are not, you and everyone else there will get very frustrated. 2. Know your children. Every family is different and every child is too. Think about who will be at your seder and act accordingly. Enhance what will excite your children, and move quicker through what won’t. If there are parts of the seder that you want them to be more interested in, think about what you will need to do to make that happen – and it may be different per child. Don’t try to change who they are by just expecting them to be excited by what excites you. It will create tension and it just won’t work. 3. Find kid-friendly motivators. Depending on the ages of your children or their personalities, plan and prepare things that will motivate them. Toy frogs (the kind that jump when you press the back cost 5 cents each and are a big hit!), makkos masks and puppets, haggados with pictures, prizes for saying the mah nishtana (or better yet, for sitting through everyone else’s), or anything else that will grab them are easy ways to get your children excited. 4. Plan ahead. Take some time to strategize before the seder to create a childfriendly evening. Who will say divrei Torah at each meal, how many will be said, when will they be said? Take into account which children get offended if they cannot share what they learned right away, who can wait and how much the family can reason-

Mrs. Hebel’s Top Ten Tips FOR InvOlvInG YOuR CHIlDREn In THE PEsACH sEDER

ably expect to sit through. You can certainly improvise during the seder as needed but the more of a game plan you have, the more likely it is to run well. 5. Use all of the parts of the seder smartly. Overflow of divrei Torah or the divrei Torah that only interest adults are good to be saved for the meal when the kids wander away. Consider asking your older children to let the younger ones take center stage during maggid, which is not easy for them to sit through, and instead to engage in their discussions during the meal. Give your insights during the karpas or any other point in the meal – not all during maggid. A rule of thumb to remember: anything that lasts too long will make your children fidgety. 6. Keep the seder moving. It is very disappointing when afikomen time comes and half the kids are asleep. All their learning and planning … and they miss their favorite part! There are eight days of Pesach (that’s 16 meals!) – not everything has to be shared at the seder. Keep your eye on the clock and keep it moving!

7. Use smart seating. Keep kids who need help near adults or older siblings. For some elementary-aged children, helping a younger sibling can be stimulating and a big self-esteem booster; that’s a real motivation to stay involved. 8. Get your children’s input. Ask the children what will make the seder exciting for them. Reflect with them on last year’s seder and work with their feedback. 9. Engage them! Every family has a different comfort level with the type of atmosphere they want at their seder and the balance they want to strike between engaging the children and maintaining a more serious decorum. There is no right way, but if you are ready to go a bit further, a whole assortment of interactive ideas for exciting the children are available online – you can see a few at html. If you are more comfortable keeping things simpler, your seder can be a positive and memorable experience without going overboard. Just keep talking to your children and continue to pay attention to them. 10. Relax and enjoy. At the end of the day, the best memories are built on good feelings and positive interactions. Whatever happens, keep the feelings happy and positive. Don’t lose your cool if things don’t work out perfectly. There’s always next year to make things better, but you can only enjoy this year once! Mrs. Estee Hebel, MsED is the General Studies Principal of YBH (Yeshiva Beis Hillel)of Passaic, a preschool through eighth grade yeshiva day school, in Passaic, NJ. With over 17 years of experience in education and educational leadership, she is also a dynamic teacher trainer who has taught a graduate course in educational research and presents innovative, hands-on training workshops on a wide assortment of teaching methods, classroom management and motivational techniques and strategies for encouraging self-directed and higher-level learning. To learn more about her workshops or to schedule one, you can contact her at 732-779-1185 or


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In the Kitchen Estee Kafra

Chocolatey Goodness These just might be the best Pesach cookies you have ever tasted! Ingredients ¾ cup margarine, room temperature 1 cup white sugar 1 cup brown sugar 2 eggs 3-1/4 cups very finely ground blanched almonds ½ cup potato starch 1 cup chopped pecans ¾ cup sweetened coconut flakes 1 cup chocolate chips

Chewy Chocolate Chip Pesach Cookies

Ingredients 8 eggs, separated 1 ½ cups sugar 3 ½ oz. chocolate 1 tsp coffee dissolved in 1 TBS boiling water ½ cup oil 1 TBS lemon juice 1 bag (6 oz.) ground filberts 1 TBS potato starch, sifted Confectioner’s sugar or Chocolate Cream for topping (optional) Preparation Preheat oven to 350°F. In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with a beater attachment, beat egg whites until soft peaks form.

Preparation Preheat oven to 350°. In an electric mixer fitted

with a beater, beat sugars and margarine until creamy. Note: ookies Add the eggs, hese c ell. T ground almonds, w freeze and potato starch and mix again until incorporated. Add the chopped pecans, coconut flakes and chocolate chips and mix by hand until incorporated into the dough. Roll into walnut-sized balls and place onto a lined cookie sheet, leaving at least 2 inches on each side to flatten. Bake for 12 – 14 minutes. Cookies will be soft but they harden slightly as they cool.

with Sprinkle nary tio confec spread r o sugar te hocola c with when cream g. servin

In a second bowl, beat egg yolks with sugar until creamy and pale. Meanwhile, in a double boiler, melt the chocolate and add the dissolved coffee and oil. Cool for about 5-7 minutes. In a third bowl, combine the filberts and potato starch. Fold the chocolate mixture and filbert mixture, along with the lemon juice, into the whites, and fold until completely combined. Pour into a 9 inch springform pan. Bake for 50 minutes. Cake is supposed to be moist. Don’t overbake!

Filbert Cake Continued on page 112


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Yeshivas Toras Chaim invites you to join us at our Second Annual

Yeshiva Donor Lunch – Honoring –

Rabbi & Mrs. Sander Goldberg Torah Achievement Award

APRIL 10, 2014

Mr. & Mrs. Chaim Wilson Sunday, May 11, 2014 ~ 11 Iyar 5774 1:00pm Royal Restaurant

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To place ad in our Donor Journal, please contact Mrs. Devorah Taffel, 410-585-1801 or For reservations, please contact Mrs. Rivka Bluestein 410-585-0314 or

Rabbi Chanina Szendro, Menahel Rabbi Ayson Englander, Assistant Menahel

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Yeshivas Toras Chaim is a first rate Mesivta, grades 9th-12th in the heart of the Baltimore community. Our local boys receive an excellent education both in Hebrew and general studies in a small, warm environment. Our mission is to produce talmidim who find satisfaction and joy in learning and avodas Hashem, who are then capable of advancing on to excellent bais medrash programs, and beyond. All the standard yeshiva limudim and gemara skills are learned, with an additional focus on halacha, biur tefilla, hashkafa, and middos development. Yeshivas Toras Chaim accepts only capable young men, serious about their growth as bnei torah.

36 APRIL 10, 2014


History And MeMory By Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Generation by generation, each person must see himself as if he himself had come out of Egypt, as it is said: “This is because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.” (Mishna Pesahim 10:5)


ll Jews who are at all conscious of their identity as Jews,” wrote the late Sir Isaiah Berlin, “are steeped in history.” He con-

tinued: They have longer memories, they are aware of a longer continuity as a community than any other which has survived…. Whatever other factors may have entered into the unique amalgam which, if not always Jews themselves, at any rate the rest of the world instantly recognizes as the Jewish people, historical conscious- ness – sense of continuity with the past – is among the most powerful. (“Benjamin Disraeli, Karl Marx and the Search for Identity”) Once, at a dinner, I found myself sitting next to a famous opera singer. “What I envy you for [he meant Jews],” he said, “is your gift of history. I know nothing about my great-grandparents, but you have a history that goes all the way back.” So strong is this sense that Benjamin Disraeli (born a Jew, but baptized by his father as a child) referred to it in one of his most famous replies in Parliament. In 1835, the Irish Catholic politician Daniel O’Connell made a slighting reference to Disraeli’s Jewish ancestry. Disraeli replied, “Yes, I am a Jew, and when the ancestors of the right honorable gentleman were brutal savages in an unknown island, mine were priests in the temple of Solomon.” Where does it come from, this Jewish consciousness of the past? The prophets of Israel were the first people to see G-d in history. The ancient world – the world of myth – saw the presence of the gods in

nature, in the unchanging rhythm of the seasons and the fearful dislocations of flood, famine, and storm. The revolution of ancient Israel was to see G-d not in nature but above it, utterly transcendent, yet revealing Himself to mankind in the form of a call to build a different kind of society than any that had existed hitherto. Monotheism was not the only great Israelite discovery. More significant still was the realization that G-d is not only the Creator but also the Redeemer. As Judah Halevi pointed out in the Kuzari, the Ten Commandments begin not with the words “I am the L-rd, your G-d who created heaven and earth,” but with “I am the L-rd, your G-d who brought you out of the land of Egypt” (Ex. 20:2). He is to be found not only in what Wordsworth described as that “sense sublime” of “something far more deeply interfused, whose dwelling is the light of setting suns, and the round ocean and the living air,” but in the great events of history, above all the liberation of a small slave people from the grip of the greatest empire of the ancient world, the Egypt of the pharaohs. From earliest times, Israel knew that something unprecedented had happened whose significance would reverberate far beyond its own time. Speaking to the generation that would soon cross the Jordan and enter the Promised Land, Moses reminded them of the unique experience they had undergone: Ask now about the former days, long before your time, from the day G-d created man on earth; ask from one end of the heavens to the other. Has any-

There is another identity, going back not to the patriarchs and matriarchs but to the revelation at Mount Sinai.

thing so great as this ever happened, or has anything like it ever been heard of ?…Has any god ever tried to take for himself one nation out of another nation, by testings, by miraculous signs and wonders and wars, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, or by great and awesome deeds, like all the things the L-rd your G-d did for you in Egypt before your very eyes? (Deut. 4:32, 34) Israel knew G-d not by contemplating the sun and the stars but directly through its own past. Where other faiths, ancient and modern, saw religion as the flight from history into a world without time, Judaism saw time itself as the arena where G-d and mankind met. Three-quarters of the Hebrew Bible is made up of historical narratives. Jews were the first to make the momentous claim that history has meaning. It is not merely a sequence of disconnected events, but the long story of humanity’s re-



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sponse to, or rebellion against, the voice of G-d as it echoes in the conscience of mankind. It is all the more remarkable, therefore, that biblical Hebrew has no word for history. Modern Hebrew had to borrow a word: historia. The key word of the Hebrew Bible is not history but memory. Zakhor, the command to remember, occurs time and again in the Torah: Remember the earliest of days. (Deut. 32:7) Remember what Amalek did to you. (ibid. 25:17) O My people, remember now what Balak king of Moab plotted against you. (Mic. 6:5) And with equal insistence, there is the command not to forget: Beware lest you forget the L-rd your G-d…lest


History is information. Memory, by contrast, is part of identity. father in his role as storyteller, guardian of a people’s past, which he is charged with handing on to his children. There is an identity we acquire at birth. We are the children of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; of Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah. We are part of the covenantal family. That is the maternal gift. But there is another identity, going back not to the patriarchs and matriarchs but to the revelation at Mount Sinai, whose content we only gradually learn and internalize. That is the function traditionally ascribed to fathers, who are charged with giving children the identity that comes through memory. The Hebrew verb zakhor signifies more than a consciousness of the past. My predecessor, Lord Jakobovits, pointed out that the word yizkor, the name given to the traditional Jewish prayer for the dead, is associated in the Torah with the future. “G-d remembered Noah” and brought him out on dry land. “G-d remembered Abraham” and rescued his nephew Lot from the destruction of the cities of the plain. “G-d remembered Rachel” and gave her a child. We remember for the sake of the future, and for life. There is a profound difference between history and memory. History is his story – an event that happened sometime else to someone else. Memory is my story – something that happened to me and is

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you lift up your hearts and forget the L-rd your G-d who brought you out of the land of Egypt…. And it shall come to pass if you indeed forget the L-rd your G-d…I bear witness against you this day that you shall utterly perish. (Deut. 8:11–19) The word zakhor in one or other of its forms occurs no fewer than 169 times in the Hebrew Bible. As Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi notes, “Only in Israel and nowhere else is the injunction to remember felt as a religious imperative to an entire people” (Zakhor: Jewish History and Jewish Memory). This was Moses’ injunction to future generations: “Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely lest you forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live; teach them to your children and to their children” (Deut. 4:9). Jews were to become a people of memory. The word zakhar, meaning “male,” comes from the same root as zakhor, “remember,” suggesting that there are two dimensions of Jewish identity – biological, conferred by the mother, and cultural, conferred by the


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111 83 part of who I am. History is information. Memory, by contrast, is part of identity. I can study the history of other peoples, cultures, and civilizations. They deepen my knowledge and broaden my horizons. But they do not make a claim on me. They are the past as past. Memory is the past as present, as it lives on in me. Without memory there can be no identity. Alzheimer’s disease, the progressive atrophying of memory function, is also the disintegration of personality. As with individuals, so with a nation: it has a continuing identity to the extent that it can remember where it came from and who its ancestors were. Yet there is a paradox in the idea of collective memory. How can I remember what did not happen to me – an event that took place long before I was born? The answer given by the seder service on Pesach is: through reenactment, by living again the events of ancient times as if they were happening now. That is the significance of the statement of the sages that on Pesach, “Generation by generation, each person must see himself as if he himself had come out of Egypt.” At the beginning of the seder, by lifting the matza and declaring, “This is the bread of oppression our fathers ate in the land of Egypt,” we make the leap across time and turn “then” into “now.” “It is because of what the L-rd did for me when I went out of Egypt” (Ex. 13:8). In these words tradition heard the continuous present, the past that lives on, the event that speaks to me in the first person singular.

There is something quite distinctive about the biblical approach to time. The historical books of the Bible are the first of their kind by several centuries, long before the Greek writer Herodotus (fifth century BCE), known as “the father of history.” Yet the biblical narrative is never mere history, a recording of what happened because it happened, whether to entertain or to instruct. Nor is it myth, a prescientific attempt to explain why the world is as it is. It is

nothing less than the sustained attempt to see events through the prism of faith, as the ongoing interaction between heaven and earth, command and response, the divine word and the human success or failure in hearing and acting on the word. It is saturated by the idea of covenant as the partnership initiated by G-d and entered into by mankind, making them partners in the work of redemption. There is nothing preordained in this narrative. By giving humanity free will, G-d has made human beings His coauthors in writing the script of history. Yet it is not open-ended either, “a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” History, as understood by the Torah, is the story of how human beings, led only by the sound of a voice, a call, began the long journey, not yet complete, to a Promised Land and a messianic age where people construct a society that honors the image of G-d in others, sanctifying life, building families of love and

there is virtually no historical writing, with the exception of the sixteenth century, when, in response to the Spanish expulsion, several works appeared, trying to make sense of the tragic fate of Jews in the Diaspora. The great renaissance of historical writing occurred in the early nineteenth century, when the Society for the Science of Judaism was formed in Germany and the great works of Zunz, Graetz, and others began to appear. What Yerushalmi notes is that this new scholarly enterprise was born not in a sense of identification with the past, but precisely out of a sense of alienation. In the eyes of its founders, Judaism was a spent force, a relic of the past that had no future in post-Enlightenment Europe. All that remained, in Steinschneider’s words, was “to give it a decent burial.” It is said that Zunz, introduced in his old age to a Hebrew poet visiting from Russia, asked him, “Tell me, when did you

Pesach is where the past does not die but lives. trust, shaping communities by the principles of justice and compassion, and living at peace with their neighbors. No religion has conferred on mankind a greater responsibility. We are not, in this narrative, condemned to fail because of hubris or “original sin.” We are not confined to pure submission to the will of G-d. Instead, G-d has entrusted His great creation to our safekeeping, and though the Hebrew Bible tells us that Israel failed often, it also tells us that G-d has never lost faith in us, though we may sometimes lose our faith in Him. The concept of covenant is intimately related to time. “I have chosen him,” says the G-d of Abraham, “so that he may instruct his children and his household after him to keep to the way of the L-rd, by doing what is right and just” (Gen. 18:19). The achievement of a free and just society is the work not of a moment but of many generations. Israel must experience exile before it can fully understand the concept of home. It must undergo slavery if it is to long with all its being for freedom. It must walk through the valley of the shadow of death to know in its bones the sanctity of life. That is why covenant is essentially linked to education and memory, for the journey is long – longer than many lifetimes – and only when each generation hands on to the next what it has heard and learned and prayed for does the journey continue; and only if the journey continues is history redeemed. History has meaning only for those who believe it has meaning. Without that, it is what Harold MacMillan called “events, dear boy, events.” In his book Zakhor: Jewish History and Jewish Memory, Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi makes the fascinating observation that, having seen G-d in history and written an entire library of historical works, the Jewish people suddenly stopped writing history at the time of the destruction of the Second Temple. The last great Jewish historian was Josephus, who wrote his works in the first century of the Common Era. From then on, throughout the rabbinic literature of the mishnaic, talmudic, and medieval periods,

live?” History is the dead past that only memory can revive. It was Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch who delivered the most cogent critique of history as a substitute for memory: Moses and Hesiod, David and Sappho, Deborah and Tyrtaeus, Isaiah and Homer, Delphi and Jerusalem, Pythian tripod and Cherubim – sanctuary, prophets and oracles, psalms and elegy – for us they all lie peacefully in one box, they all rest peacefully in one grave, they all have one and the same human origin, they all have one and the same significance, human, transitory and belonging to the past…. We let the old Jews fast on Tisha B’Av, we let them say Selihot and weep over Kinot. But in return we know far better than they do in which century these “poets” flourished, in what meter these “poets” composed…. Do these departed spirits rejoice in the literary gratitude of our present generation? Whom do they recognize as their true heirs? Those who repeated their prayers, but forgot their names, or those who forgot their prayers but remembered their names? (“Av I”) To be a Jew is to know that over and above history is the task of memory. As Jacob Neusner eloquently wrote: “Civilization hangs suspended, from generation to generation, by the gossamer strand of memory. If only one cohort of mothers and fathers fails to convey to its children what it has learned from its parents, then the great chain of learning and wisdom snaps. If the guardians of human knowledge stumble only one time, in their fall collapses the whole edifice of knowledge and understanding” (Neusner on Judaism: Religion and Theology). More than any other faith, Judaism made this a matter of religious obligation. Pesach is where the past does not die but lives, in the chapter we write in our own lives and in the story we tell our children. Reprinted with permission from The Jonathan Sacks Haggada, published by Maggid Books, a division of Koren Publishers Jerusalem

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A Parsha Thought Rabbi Shmuel Silber

In order to fully celebrate our spiritual emancipation we must reflect what it was like to be a spiritual wanderer, not knowing what to believe or how to connect. Mitchila Ovdei Avoda Zara Hayu Avoseinu, in the beginning our forefathers were idolaters. Only when we remember our past can we truly appreciate our future. The great Maggid of Kohznitz (Rav Yisroel Hopstein, 1737-1814) explains that the greatest danger we face is believing we are beyond salvation. A person may think to himself, “I have done so many terrible things, I have tarnished my soul, I have sullied my reputation, I have failed to actualize my potential; what hope is there for me?” Maschil B’Genus, even if the beginning is degrading, even if the beginning is stunted and handicapped, Misayeym B’Shevach, I choose how the story ends, I can change, I can live better, do better and create a beautiful future. We were slaves, we were more animal than man, we were viewed by

Baking Matzah this past week, Phtoto credit-Baltimore Jewish Life

others and we viewed ourselves as chattel and property. And yet, look at us now; we are a strong and free people. We were idolaters, spiritual bankrupt and estranged from God and yet, we managed to find our way home. We lifted ourselves from serving the creations of our hands to serving the King of Kings. We cannot always rewrite the past but we can absolutely decide how to script our future. Perhaps, there is a third lesson as well. Life requires patience. Events occur and we search for answers. Situations unfold and we try desperately to understand their deeper meaning. We want insight and clarity and we want it now. Clarity will come but it requires the passage of time. Maschil B’Genus U’Misayeym B’Shevach, we begin with degradation and conclude with praise, the difficult life situations will have a positive resolution (not necessarily the resolution we desire, but positive nevertheless). However, just as it takes time to reach the Shevach (praise) contained within the Haggadah; it takes time to see our personal praise and resolution as well. It will come – we just have to be patient. Maschil B’Genus U’Misayeym B’Shevach, we begin with degradation and conclude with praise; the rabbis were not simply giving us a format for the Haggadah, they were providing us with a format for life. To actualize our freedom and maximize our ability to shape our personal and national destiny we must internalize the messages of the Haggadah. We must remember that while building our future; we must reflect on the events and messages of our past. No matter how far we have wandered, no matter how estranged we have become from God, ourselves and one another – no person is beyond salvation. We must bear in mind that resolution, understanding and happiness will come to those who are patient enough to wait.

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At first glance, the Haggadah appears to be a random collection of verses, stories and statements. However, upon further reflection we come to understand the intentional yet, nuanced structure of this ancient script. The Talmud (Pesachim 115) explains Maschil B’Genus U’Misayeym B’Shevach, we begin with degradation and conclude with praise. We begin the Seder by discussing the “low points” or disparaging chapters of our national existence. The sages disagree as to which “low point” we should begin with. Shmuel explains that we begin with, “Avadim Hayinu, we were slaves.” We acknowledge that we did not begin as a nation of free men and women. We were slaves who served a human master. Rav states, “Mitchila Ovdei Avoda Zara Hayu Avoseinu, in the beginning our forefathers were idolaters.” We were not always monotheists, we did not always pledge our allegiance to God, we served and paid homage to other gods. According to Shmuel over the course of the Pesach Seder we work our way to celebrating our physical freedom. According to Rav, the Seder is the opportunity to celebrate our newfound spiritual emancipation. Rav and Shmuel may disagree on the specific beginning and end points but do agree on the structure of the Seder night; Maschil B’Genus U’Misayeym B’Shevach, we begin with degradation and conclude with

praise. What is the meaning of this rabbinic framework? Why must we start with the negative or disparaging chapters of our national existence? Why not begin and end with our freedom, emancipation and positive identity as the nation of God? The commentaries on the Haggadah share many approaches and answers. The Malbim (Rabbi Meir Leibush, 1809-1879) explains that the best way to make a dramatic point is through contrast. One appreciates light when one has been exposed to darkness. In order to fully appreciate the freedom granted to us on this sacred night, we must first acquaint ourselves with servitude. In order to feel physically free we must spend time reminiscing, Avadaim Hayinu L’Pharaoh B’Mitzrayim, we were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt. Only after we engage in historical reflection and taste some of the bitter marror, can we truly thank God for redeeming us.


Beginning & Ending: Reflections on the Haggadah

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In the Kitchen


Jamie Geller


Zucchini Fritters with Fresh Tomato Salsa My Grandma “Ma” always made chremslach, a.k.a. potato pancakes. Latkes are great Passover fare. You can easily substitute potato starch for breadcrumbs or matzah meal to make your favorite recipes non-gebrochts. I was inspired by her Old Country recipe but wanted a New Country twist so I adapted it to feature zucchini, which is “free” on my diet. The fresh tomato salsa is also great on fish or chicken, or served as part of your starter course. Ingredients For Fritters: 1 pound zucchini, shredded ½ pound carrots, shredded 1 small red onion, shredded 2 large eggs, beaten 1 cup matzah meal or potato starch 1 teaspoon kosher salt Oil for frying For Salsa: 10 red grape tomatoes, halved

10 yellow grape tomatoes, halved 10 orange grape tomatoes, halved 2 cloves garlic, chopped ¼ cup fresh torn parsley leaves 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 lemon, juiced Kosher salt Fresh cracked black pepper Preparation In a large bowl, combine zucchini, carrots, onions, eggs, matzah meal or potato starch, and salt, and mix to combine. Heat ¼ inch of oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Drop 2 tablespoonfuls of batter per pancake, and lightly press down to flatten. Fry for about 3 minutes per side or until nicely browned. Remove and drain on paper towels. Continue with remaining batter. In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, parsley, olive oil and lemon. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over top or on the side of fritters.

Spring Lettuce with Pastrami Croutons & Balsamic Reduction This salad recipe is simple and springy, but you have to follow a few rules. Balsamic vinegar will sweeten when reduced and it will also intensify in flavor, so you want good-quality balsamic — not generic or cheap brands — for your balsamic reduction. Avoid using uncoated copper or aluminum pans which can alter the flavor of the vinegar. Remember that vinegar can thicken quickly, but you can always add water to bring it back to desired consistency. Ingredients ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided 1 pound chunk of pastrami, cubed 1 cup Bartenura balsamic vinegar 6 cups spring lettuce mix or favorite salad greens Kosher salt Fresh cracked black pepper Preparation Heat ¼ cup of oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Using tongs and working in

batches, fry the pastrami in a single layer until crisp and deep dark red, almost blackened, about 7 to 9 minutes. Drain on paper towels, and let cool slightly. Pour balsamic vinegar into a skillet that has preheated for a couple of minutes over medium-high heat. Bring the vinegar to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and allow it to simmer, thicken and reduce. Stir or whisk the vinegar occasionally as it simmers to prevent burning. Remove the pan from the heat when the vinegar has reduced to about 1/3 of a cup and is syrupy. Allow the vinegar to sit a few minutes more; it will continue to thicken. Toss the greens with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large salad bowl. Crumble the pastrami into bits by hand or chop with a knife. Top the salad with the pastrami-fry. Drizzle with balsamic reduction and salt and pepper to taste. Serve any extra pastrami-fry in a dish on the side so people can add more if desired.

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She’s unusual. She’s unpredictable. She’s just like you.

Top matzah with a quick and flavorful ratatouille featuring eggplant, zucchini and bell peppers and finish off with two cheeses. Have all ingredients chopped and at the ready so you can move quickly. Ingredients ¼ cup olive oil 1 clove garlic, chopped ½ cup diced yellow onion ½ cup diced eggplant ½ cup diced red bell peppers ½ cup diced green bell peppers

A heartwarming drama with a powerful message. Written and directed by Malky Weingarten Approved by Mechanchos For women and girls

Showing this Chol Hamoed ½ cup diced zucchini 1 cup Sabra Matbucha or Caponata 5 sheets matzah 1 ¼ cups shredded mozzarella ¾ cup ricotta cheese

Preparation Preheat oven to 400F. Heat oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes until just translucent and beginning to soften, stirring often, careful not to burn. Add eggplant, peppers and zucchini and sauté 5 to 10 minutes more or until just soft, stirring often, careful not to burn. Remove from the heat and stir in Sabra Matbucha or Caponata to combine. Evenly distribute and spread Matbucha Ratatouille over 5 sheets of matzah and sprinkle with mozzarella. Place 4 to 5 small dollops of ricotta on each sheet of matzah. Bake at 400°F for 5 to 10 minutes until cheese is golden and bubbly. Using a pizza slicer or a sharp knife, slice matzah into 4 equal squares and serve warm. Photo by Chanie Apfelbaum from

TAKE PICTURES OF YOUR FOOD, YOUR FAMILY, AND YOUR FRIENDS! Submit pics on JoyofKosher or on Twitter and Instagram with #ShareSabra. The more pictures you submit, the more chances you have to win a $200 Amex gift card! Contest ends April 23.

Jamie Geller is the only best-selling cookbook author who wants to get you out of the kitchen – not because she doesn’t love food – but because she has tons to do. As “The Bride Who Knew Nothing,” Jamie found her niche specializing in fast, fresh, family recipes. Now the “Queen of Kosher” (CBS) and the “Jewish Rachael Ray” (The New York Times), she’s the creative force behind and Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller magazine . Jamie and her hubby live in Israel with their five busy kids who give her plenty of reasons to get out of the kitchen – quickly. Check out her new book, Joy of Kosher: Fast, Fresh Family Recipes.

Thursday, April 17, 5:30pm & 8:15pm Motzei Shabbos, April 19, 9:30pm at

Bnai Jacob Shaarei Zion Admission: $15

Students $12

APRIL 10, 2014

Ratatouille and Ricotta Matzah Pizza


You’ll be touched by the life, love, and laughter of

T H E J E W I S H H O M E n MAAY P R 2I L4 ,1 2012 0 , 2014






Now accepting applications for September 2014

APRIL 10, 2014


Rabbi Ahron Lopiansky


The Jewish home n

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y dear child, It is now a quiet moment late at night. After an exhausting day of Passover cleaning, you have sunk into the sweetest of sleeps, and I am sitting here with a pile of haggadas, preparing for seder night. Somehow the words never come out the way I want them to, and the seder evening is always unpredictable. But so many thoughts and feelings are welling up in my mind and I want to share them with you. These are the words I mean to say at the seder. When you will see me at the seder dressed in a kittel, the same plain white garment worn on Yom Kippur, your first question will be, “Why are you dressed like this?” Because it is Yom Kippur, a day of reckoning. You see, each one of us has a double role. First and foremost we are human beings, creatures in the image of G-d, and on Yom Kippur we are examined if indeed we are worthy of that title. But we are also components of Klal Yisrael, the Jewish People, links in a chain that started over 3,000 years ago and will make it to the finish line of the end of times. It is a relay race where a torch is passed on through all the ages, and it is our charge, to take it from the one before and pass it on to the one after. Tonight we are being judged as to how well we have received our tradition and how well we are passing it on. It is now 3,300 years since we received that freedom in Egypt. If we imagine the average age of having a child to be about 25 years of age, there are four generations each century. That means there is a total of 132 people

stretching from our forefathers in Egypt to us today. 132 people had to pass on this heritage flawlessly, with a devotion and single-mindedness that could not falter. Who were these 133 fathers of mine? One had been in the Nazi death camps; one had been whipped unconscious by Cossacks. One had children stolen by the Czar, and one was the laughing stock of his “enlightened” brethren. One lived in a basement in Warsaw with many days passing with no food to his mouth; the other ran a stupendous mansion in France. One

Each with his own test of faith. And each with one overriding and burning desire: that this legacy be passed unscathed to me. And one request of me: that I pass this on to you, my sweet child. What is this treasure that they have given their lives for? What is in this precious packet that 132 generations have given up everything for? It is a great secret: That man is capable of being a lot more than an intelligent primate. That the truth of an Almighty G-d does not depend on public approval, and no matter how many people jeer at you, truth never changes.

It Is a relay race where a torch Is passed on through all the ages, and It Is our charge, to take It from the one before and pass It on to the one after.

had been burned at stake for refusing to believe in the divinity of a flesh and blood, and one had been frozen to death in Siberia for continuing to believe in the divinity of the Eternal G-d. One had been hounded by a mob for living in Europe rather than Palestine, and one had been blown up by Palestinians for not living in Europe. One had been a genius who could not enter medical school because he was not Christian, and one was fed to the lions by the Romans… 132 fathers, each with his own story.

That the quality of life is not measured by goods but by the good. That one can be powerfully hungry, and yet one can forgo eating if it is not kosher. That a penny that is not mine is not mine, no matter the temptation or rationalization. That family bonding is a lot more than birthday parties; it is a commitment of loyalty that does not buckle in a moment of craving or lust. And so much more. This is our precious secret, and it is our charge to live it and to become a shining display of “This is what it

means to live with G-d.” 132 people have sat seder night after seder night, year after year, and with every fiber of their heart and soul have made sure that this treasure would become mine and yours. Doubters have risen who are busy sifting the sands of the Sinai trying to find some dried out bones as residues of my great-greatgrandfather. They are looking in the wrong place. The residue is in the soul of every one of these 132 grandfathers whose entirety of life was wrapped up in the preservation of this memory and treasure. It is unthinkable that a message borne with such fervor and intensity, against such challenges and odds, is the result of a vague legend or the fantasy of an idle mind. I am the 133rd person in this holy chain. At times I doubt if I am passing it on well enough. I try hard, but it is hard not to quiver when you are on the vertical shoulders of 132 people, begging you not to disappoint them by toppling everyone with you swaying in the wind. My dear child, may G-d grant us many long and happy years together. But one day, in the distant future, I’ll be dressed in a kittel again as they prepare me for my burial. Try to remember that this is the treasure that I have passed on to you. And then it will be your turn, you will be the 134th with the sacred duty to pass on our legacy to number 135. Rabbi Lopiansky is the Rosh Yeshiva of the Yeshiva of Greater Washington. He is the author of numerous scholarly works, in Hebrew and English. This article was reprinted with permission from

Rabbi's Musings [& Amusings]

Snapping up the Seder


ding liation many vos.

nity es oing.




said that I would just have to enjoy the trip without the camera. (By the way, they did regret not having the camera when I donned roller blades and tried to keep up with my son. Suffice it to say that I inadvertently ended up seated on the pavement.) I should add that, I think it is a hidden blessing that it is prohibited to take pictures on Shabbos and yom tov. Our family pictures in front of the Chanukah menorah are very beautiful, but there is no question that there is something subtle lost in the fact that we take pictures during those sublime moments. (I know we could just not take pictures. Thanks for your advice but let’s be realistic...) This year our children made a mock seder a week before Pesach so that we could compile a “Staum family haggadah” complete with pictures from their seder on every page, which we dedicated and gave to our children’s grandparents. Although it was beautiful and much appreciated, there is undoubtedly something gained by the fact that during the real seder our complete focus is on the moment, since we cannot take pictures on yom tov anyway. I look at it this way: the seder is an elite and holy night when we must work on instilling in our progeny the most important tenets of our faith. During the night when we are creating memories for the future we cannot be distracted by efforts to preserve the present. In closing, let me just say that we indeed have some very beautiful pictures from that Chol Hamo’ed outing – thanks to my mother who is a certified “Bubby-snapper” who joined us! Wishing you a chag kosher v’sameach! Rabbi Dani Staum, LMSW, is the Rabbi of Kehillat New Hempstead, and Guidance Counselor/Rebbe at Yeshiva Bais Hachinuch & Ashar in Monsey, NY. He is the author of Stam Torah and can be reached at His website is www.

APRIL 10, 2014


o matter where you go these days people are taking pictures. We live in a world of “snappers,” those who just can’t seem to stop taking (and emailing) pictures. Today you don’t even need a camera in order to take a picture, because most phones today have picture- (and video-) taking capability. Why are we so addicted to pictures? I believe that one of the main reasons we ‘snap’ is because we want to preserve the moment. When our child does something cute, we witness stunning scenery, we spend time with good friends, or we are enjoying a wonderful vacation or family time, we take pictures to freeze some of those moments so that we can enjoy them and reflect back on them in the future. The only problem is that we are often so busy trying to preserve the present for the future, that we fail to fully appreciate and enjoy the present. I write these words knowing full well that I am being somewhat hypocritical, because I myself am a “snapper.” Please do not misunderstand me. I do not mean to say that pictures are a complete waste of time and energy. Our family has many beautiful albums that we enjoy looking at from time to time, and indeed there are many wonderful memories that we are reminded of when looking at those pictures. But I know that I am often too focused on the pictures. During trips and outings, my wife often nudges me to put away the camera. “We have enough pictures already. Just enjoy the moment.” I struggle to adhere to her wise advice fearing that I may lose out on a great snapshot. You can imagine my chagrin then when during one of our Chol Hamo’ed outings my sister took out our camera and realized that I had forgotten to replace the camera’s battery which was charging overnight. I had no one to be annoyed at other than myself. I wasn’t too keen when everyone laughed and


Rabbi Dani Staum


Forgotten Heroes

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Avi Heiligman

Trying to Murder the Devil


Ewald-Heinrich Von Kleist’s Attempt to Assassinate Hitler

uring the 20th century, there to the SS and Himmler YM’S and his were many dictators and ruthless Gestapo), who disproved of the Nazis leaders. These people ruled with and Hitler, saw that he was going to ruthless abandon and run the country in most died inglorious a terrible way, and deaths. Rulers like therefore sought to Joseph Stalin and dispose of him. In Benito Mussolini mid-1943, Colowere hunted down nel Henning von and while Stalin Tresckow, who died of a heart attack headed the largest (he was in a room conspiracy group to with his ministers date, met with Lt. and when he asked Colonel Claus Von for help, they all left. Stauffenberg. He They came back a was a deeply reliday later, and he gious young officer was, unsurprisingly, who was wounded dead), Mussolini in North Africa and was brought to saw that Hitler was Lt Colonel Claus Von Stauffenberg who justice and killed by running the country carried out the bombing at Wolf’s Lair anti-fascists which into the ground and soon ruled Italy during the later stages felt that the only action possible would of WWII. The most raving lunatic of be to assassinate the Fuehrer. them all was Hitler ym”sh. (There are The problem was to get to Hitler. many stories of him losing his mind and As the war dragged on, he rarely made playing around with phantom armies.) public appearances or met with people Historians compiled a list of 42 known he didn’t know or trust. Von Stauffenassassination attempts on his life before berg and the Schwarze Kappelle (The he committed suicide on April 30, Black Orchestra, as they were called) 1945. The most famous of these was the tried at least four times without success July 20, 1944 briefcase bombing of his to kill him. One of these plots involved “Wolf’s Lair” where he was injured and a very risky move by the operator that almost killed. Many of the conspirators most likely would end in the death of were killed; however, a few survived both Hitler and the person carrying out Hitler’s onslaught afterwards. The last the mission. surviving member of the conspiracy Ewald von Kleist, 22-years-old at was Ewald-Heinrich Von Kleist. the time, met with Von Stauffenberg in Even before Germany declared war January 1940 and volunteered for the on Poland in September 1939, there suicide mission. Hitler was to review were high ranking members in the Ger- the new uniforms of the army with man Army, the Wehrmacht (as opposed von Kleist as the model. Underneath the uniform, von Kleist was wearing a bomb vest and he was going to detonate it while in the presence of the madman. At first he was reluctant to carry out the mission, but his father urged him on by telling him that it was his duty. Von Kleist’s father was an opponent of Hitler from even before the war, when he traveled to England in 1938 to try to determine if Western nations would support a coup attempt against the rising political leader. Twenty-two-year-old von Kleist believed that he would be able to detonate the bomb in a way that he wouldn’t have to die. In the end, the young German army lieutenant didn’t have to do A young von Kleist in uniform it because Hitler kept on postponing the

went into hiding. demonstration. Von Stauffenberg A few months had left the Wolf’s later, Von StauffenLair before the exberg approached plosion and reached Kleist again and Berlin only to hear told him that Hitthe news that the ler was planning Nazis were still in a meeting in the power. Fighting Wolf’s Lair. The broke out between conspirators needed Inspecting the damage to Wolf’s Lair the conspirators and a volunteer to place after the bombing the Nazis, and many a bomb in the meeting room. Von Stauffenberg then re- people were killed or committed suicide thought about the plan and decided he in the coming days. Von Stauffenberg himself should be the one to place the was executed the next day. Altogether 7,000 people were arrested and 4,980 bomb on July 20. were executed, but it should be noted that not everyone accused or executed knew anything of the plot. Himmler and the Gestapo were ruthless in hunting down any opposition. For von Kleist, he managed to cover up his activities and connection with Von Stauffenberg but was arrested anyways. He was questioned by the Gestapo and sent to concentration camp. After a stint there, he was released for the lack of evidence and sent back to his army duties on the Russian front. After the war, he lived in an area that was given to Poland. He had to start from scratch and eventually opened up a publishing company. Von Kleist died on March 8, Von Kleist in a photograph 2013 at the age of 90, the last survivor taken in 1978 of the conspirators—a group that tried At 12:40 PM, the bomb exploded, to erase the face of evil. killing three officers and a stenographer but only wounding Hitler. There are many reasons as to why it didn’t kill Avi Heiligman is a weekly contributor to him. One, the bomb wasn’t as power- The Jewish Home. He welcomes your comful as is it should have been. Two, the ments and suggestions.for future columns table was a big, heavy wooden table and can be reached at aviheiligman@ that shielded the impact of the blast, and three, the briefcase was kicked away by Hitler prior to the detonation. At first the Schwarze Kappelle group thought that the bomb had killed Hitler and they put into action their plan for Germany after Hitler’s death. When they received word that the Fuehrer was alive and after anyone who was Von Kleist speaking at a 2010 ceremony on the occasion of the part of the plan, they 66th anniversary of the failed assassination attempt



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Leisure & Travel

Susan Schwamm

The Jewish home n


APRIL 10, 2014

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From Sea to Shining Sea : Mississippi


f you’re traveling to Mississippi, make sure to brush up on your spelling. The state is probably the most confusing one to spell, with its countless “s’s” and “i’s.” But once you get the hang of it, it’s almost fun to spell Mississippi’s name. Just try it—m-i-s-s-i… Although Mississippi is not the capital of the United States, it’s certainly the capital of many other things. The city of Greenwood is called the Cotton Capital of the World. The Catfish Capital of the World is located in Belzoni. Vardaman is considered the Sweet Potato Capital of the World, and the Towboat Capital of the World is located in Greenville. Speaking of important things, many famous people were born in Mississippi. Entertainers B. B. King and Elvis Presley were born there as was playwright Tennessee Williams and media mogul Oprah Winfrey. The genius behind The Muppets of Sesame Street, Jim Henson, was also born in this state. Speaking of puppets, Mississippi has played a major role in games in the United States. The International Checkers Hall of Fame is located in Petal. And the oldest game played in the United States is stickball and the Choctaw Indians of Mississippi are known to play this game. If you’re visiting in July, you’ll be able to catch a round of stickball at the Choctaw Indian Fair. Whatever you do in Mississippi, it’s bound to be fun ‘n games!

Things You Won’t Want to Miss Footprints of History Mississippi is a wonderful place to visit if one wishes to blend culture, beauty and American history. Spend some time at Rosalie mansion. The Federalstyle mansion was built in 1823 near the site of a former French fort. The house served as the local headquarters for the Union Army during the Civil War. On a sunny day, the Rosalie Historic Gardens are perfect for a mid-day stroll; the six-acre meadow overlooks the majestic Mississippi River. Houses of Beauty, Homes of Culture The stately homes of Mississippi are something to marvel at. When visiting Natchez, once named the wealthiest town in America, one can imagine the grand balls that took place there years ago. The Beauvoir, Jefferson Davis’s retirement home, is open to the public. Thousands flock here to view the architectural

details of the home and learn more about the Confederate leader. Fans of “the King,” Elvis Presley, take the pilgrimage to his small home in Tupelo where the King of Rock ‘n Roll spent his early years. Great River, Great Cities The Mississippi River is the longest river in North America, practically spanning the length of the United States. It is the ninth largest body of water in the world and its rushing waters provide much fun to tourists and locals alike. Those who like to fish, boat, or are looking to take in the rushing rapids can spend days marveling at this natural wonder. Make sure to spend at least a day or two kayaking, canoeing, scuba diving, swimming or waterskiing with the family. Along its meandering way, the river and its tributaries have given birth to many “river cities,” that still thrive today. Cities like Tunica, Vicksburg and Natchez have flourished along the Great River. Natural Wonders When visiting Mississippi, it’s hard not to feel awed by the beauty of its nature. At LeFleur’s Bluff State Park, visitors can spend a lazy day fishing on May’s Lake. Children

will delight in the fish at the Mississippi Natural Science Museum and have fun climbing its playground, and adults will enjoy a good game of golf there as well. Vicksburg National Military Park showcases 1,340 monuments on its green fields. Spend the day at Paul B. Johnson State Park, hiking, biking, camping and enjoying the beauty of nature.





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You Gotta be



Taxation with representation ain’t so hot either. - Gerald Barzan

Yankel, who has terrible hearing, just got an amazing hearing aid. He goes to his friend to tell him about it. Yankel tells his friend that unlike everybody else, who just get regular hearing aids, he found a special type of hearing aid that is amazing. “It is hidden in the ear and not visible; it can never break and is totally comfortable. Besides, the power is amazing. I am hearing like a 20-year-old again. I can finally carry on a good full conversation without any problems,” says Yankel. His friend is intrigued about this hearing aid and asks, “What kind is it?” Yankel looks at his watch and says: “Quarter to three.”

The income tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf has. - Will Rogers The difference between death and taxes is death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets. - Winston Churchill If you are truly serious about preparing your child for the future, don’t teach him to subtract—teach him to deduct. - Fran Lebowitz [On filing for tax returns:] This is too difficult for a mathematician. It takes a philosopher. - Albert Einstein In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes. - Benjamin Franklin

t c e f r e AP


In honor of the “ten makkos,” each of the following clues refers to a word that begins with “ten.” Can you guess all ten of them? 1. Inclination 2. Delicate or gentle 3. A sinew 4. A racket game 5. Capable of being stretched 6. Between the bass and alto 7. Stretched tight 8. Unsubstantial 9. A dwelling 10. An opinion held to be true

People who complain about taxes can be divided into two classes: men and women. - Unknown More than ever before, Americans are suffering from back problems: back taxes, back rent, back auto payments. - Robert Orben Isn’t it appropriate that the month of the tax begins with April Fool’s Day and ends with cries of “May Day”? - Rob Knauerhase

Answers: 1. Tendency 2. Tender 3. Tendon 4. Tennis 5. Tensile 6. Tenor 7. Tense 8. Tenuous 9. Tent 10. Tenet


We’ll try to cooperate fully with the IRS, because, as citizens, we feel a strong patriotic duty not to go to jail. - Dave Barry How is a mugger different from the Internal Revenue Service? Both take your money, but the mugger doesn’t make you fill out forms. - Jacob Sullum

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2. Are there more up-hills in the world or down-hills?

8. How many times can you subtract the number 5 from 25?

3. A contractor hires an electrician and a plumber to do work on a construction site. One of them was the father of the other’s son. How could this be possible?

9. A doctor gave you 3 tablets and tells you to take one every half hour. How long will it take for you to finish the pills? 10. You are participating in a race. You overtake the second person. What position are you in?

4. Are 1990 dollar bills worth more than 1989 dollar bills?

11. Two U.S. coins are worth a total of 30 cents, and one of them is not a nickel. What are the coins?

5. Some months have 30, and some have 31 days. How many months have 28 days? 6. A farmer has 17 sheep and all but 9 die. How many are left?

Answers 1.

2. There are the same amount of up-hills and down-hills because every hill is either up or down, depending on how you look at it. 3.

They were husband and wife.

4. Yes- One thousand nine hundred and ninety dollar bills are worth one dollar more than one thousand nine hundred and eighty-nine dollar bills. 5.

12. Who is not, not, not a person that has not, not set foot on the moon: Neil Armstrong or your mother? 6. Nine.

The total is 4,100. So, if you thought it was 5,000 you need to brush up on your math.

Every month.

APRIL 10, 2014

7. The Goldberg family has a mother, father and 7 daughters. Each daughter has 1 brother. How many people are in the family?


Ten (there are seven girls and one boy in the family, plus the parents).

8. Only once, and then you are subtracting it from 20. 9.

An hour

10. If you overtake the second person and you take his place, you are second! 11. A quarter and a nickel (one is not a nickel, but one is). 12. Every pair of “nots” cancel each other out. So the question really is, “Who is not a person that has set foot on the moon?”


You are a blindfolded waiter setting up a seder. There is a table with four glasses in the four corners of a square rotating table. Each glass is either facing up or facing down. You need to turn them all in the same direction, either all up or all down. You may do so by grasping any two glasses and turning either or both over. But the table is spun after each time you touch the glasses. How do you get all of the glasses to face the same way?


1. Take 1,000 and add 40 to it. Now add another 1,000. Now add 30. And another 1,000. Now add 20. Now add another 1,000. Now add 10. What is the total?




Wisdom key: 9-12 correct: You are a genius. (Just do me a favor, your comb over really is not fooling anyone…give it up) 5-8 correct: You are of average intelligence. (Sorry, I know your mother always said, “My boy, he’s so smaaat.” She was exaggerating a bit, like you are when you tell her how good her Pesach cake is!) 0-4 correct: Don’t worry, I will give you a secret tip to get brains: Take a small piece of matzah and take all of the leftover marror and eat it together very quickly. Trust me, try it. After you do that, try this quiz again and you will see that you will get more answers correct.


Comm Let the ission er dec Send your s tuff al





more o fivetow centerjfeowldis@hhome.c om nsjewis hhome. com

Answer to riddle: 1) Turn two adjacent glasses up. 2) Turn two diagonal glasses up. 3) Pull out two diagonal glasses. If one is down, turn it up and you’re done. If

not, turn one down and replace the other. 4) Take two adjacent glasses and turn them both over. 5) Take two diagonal glasses and turn them both over.

Life Coach

A P R I L 1 0 , 2014 THE JEWISH HOME n


APRIL 10, 2014

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Lori Boxer

The Weight Gain Plan … or How to Get Fat in Five Easy Steps!


know it’s strange to find a “how to” article focusing on adding fat to your body. You might say that we already know how to do that—since 2/3 of Americans are overweight and 1/3 are clinically obese. So obviously we’ve mastered this topic! I want to challenge that assumption. I think that even though we Americans are overweight and obese as a nation, very few people are aware of how they actually got there. In other words ... we’re living with the effects of The Weight Gain Plan every day, yet we’re really not cognizant of the causes. So I’d like to present the topic of weight loss in a different way: Let’s suppose a billionaire appeared at your doorstep and offered you $10 billion if you could add 100 pounds of body fat in less than a year. How could you do that? Step 1. Slow Your Metabolism. The very first thing you’ve got to do is slow your metabolism so you’ll burn fewer calories when you’re at rest. That way, even if you don’t increase the amount of food you eat, you’ll automatically add weight and store body fat. The easiest way to slow your metabolism is to stop all forms of exercise. Avoid walking. Spend a lot of time in front of the TV. Take elevators instead of stairs. Get a desk job. Find parking spaces as close as possible to the stores where you shop so you don’t spend time walking across the parking lot. And, of course, purchase one of those electric chairs or scooters so you can get around without having to walk at all. Step 2. Drink Lots of Soda. In your attempt to gain weight, you should get yourself addicted to caffeinated soda, consuming it at every possible opportunity, including breakfast. This is a great way to pack on the pounds because soda and other soft drinks are made with high-fructose corn syrup. This ingredient spikes the blood sugar in your body, sends an emergency signal to your pancreas, which produces increased levels of insulin in order to keep the blood sugar levels from going too high. The cells in your body then remove blood sugar from your bloodstream, and through a complex biologi-

cal process involving the liver, manage to store that blood sugar as body fat. Step 3. Choose High Caloric Density Foods. Be sure to purchase foods with very high caloric density. Raw, uncooked fruits and veggies will fill you up before you get very many calories into your meal. For example, it’s very difficult to eat 1,000 calories of apples at one sitting because your stomach will simply fill up before you reach 1,000 calories. But, if you choose processed foods with ingredients such as white flour, hydrogenated oils or saturated fats, and sugar, you can pack in a couple thousand calories in one sitting without ever feeling full. It’s very important to eat these kinds of foods at every meal. You want to make sure your diet consists of things like cheese, fried foods and lots of white bread. Pizza is an outstanding choice because it not only has a high caloric density from the cheese, but it also has the high glycemic index that accompanies the white flour crust. Lots of sugary breakfast cereals with high-fat cow’s milk are also an excellent choice. This will give you saturated fat from the milk and the high sugar content of the cereal, so you can fat to your body through two different biological mechanisms: fat and refined carbohydrates. Step 4. Load Up on Junk Foods. This is, of course, another outstanding choice. A bag of potato chips provides an impressive quantity of dietary fats as well as refined carbohydrates. You can also have fried foods. They have a very high caloric density, and the batter in which these foods are fried is normally made with white flour so you also get the high glycemic index effects from the carbohydrates in the batter as well as the high caloric density of the fried fats.

Step 5. Eat in Fast Food Restaurants Frequently. If you had to choose an ideal source for the combination of food ingredients that would rapidly accelerate your quest for obesity, you’d have to put fast food restaurants at the top of the list. The more popular the fast food chain, the faster their food packs on the body fat. (Maybe that’s that the “fast” in “fast food” really means.) Eat in these restaurants at least once a day, and be sure to order the largest quantities of soda, fries and hamburgers because it’s quantity that counts. You can pack in as much as 2,000 calories in a single meal!! You will be able to cash that $10 billion check well ahead of time if you eat three meals a day at a fast food restaurant. Of course, by the time you actually win the $10 billion you’ll have suffered the devastating health effects of consuming these processed foods, junk foods, fast foods and disease-promoting food ingredients. You will be $10 billion richer, but if you don’t reverse everything you’ve done over the last 90 days you will soon learn that you can’t take it with you. Fortunately, reversing your weight achievement is fairly straightforward. Simply do the opposite of everything you’ve do so far. Start exercising and increase your lean body mass by engaging in strength training. Spend time walking, swimming or cycling. Find ways to move your body at work. Avoid all processed foods and foods made with high-fructose corn syrup, white flour, refined white sugar and other refined carbohydrates. Remove soda and other soft drinks from your diet, avoid all fried foods and junk foods. Once you do all that, your liver function will begin to improve rapidly. The hardening of your arteries will begin to reverse. Your cardiovascular health will improve dra-

matically. Your brain function will even improve. Your pulse will slow, and your body fat will slowly begin to melt off. Your level of energy and vitality will gradually rise. You will find it easier to sleep at night and get up in the morning. You won’t get sick as often, and you’ll find that your immune system begins to function the way it’s supposed to in a healthy human being. If this conversation about how to gain weight sounds silly, that’s because it is. What’s even crazier is that half the population in America is on The Weight Gain Plan right now, and they’re doing it for free! How’s that for crazy? Let’s get serious about what all this means. First, realize that all of us have a great deal of power to control our own health outcome. There is a recipe for gaining weight and being diseased, just as there is a recipe for losing weight and being free of disease. You can choose to follow whichever recipe you want, and you will get exactly the results of the recipe you choose. So if you’re standing on a path right now, and it’s not the path you want to be on in terms of your own health, stop walking down that path, take a look around and find a new path. It’s not going to change your health overnight, but if you keep putting one foot in front of the other, day after day, you can end up on a completely different path than where you started. Don’t walk blindly, leaving your health to chance. If you open your eyes so that you actually see where you’re walking, you can see what kind of result you want to achieve, move towards it steadily, with determination, and ultimately experience it each and every day for the rest of your life. Wishing everyone a happy and kosher (and slim!) Pesach. Lori Boxer is the Director of Weight No MoreSM Diet Center. In addition to serving the Brooklyn, Long Island and New Jersey communities for 25 years, they also provide Skinny SkypeSM service to clients nationwide and to Israel, and offer customized Workforce Weight LossSM Programs for businesses. For more information, please call Rosalie Shatzman, Rana Frankel and Linda Franklin in their Cedarhurst office: 516.569.6400.

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Extracurricular Activities When is it Too Much?

Menahel, DRS Yeshiva High School for Boys, HALB Extracurricular activities are very, very important for the development of a child’s skills and self-esteem. In some cases, especially for those who don’t find excelling in the classroom easy, extracurricular programs can be even more important. When a person signs up to be a parent, there is a lot of responsibility involved. Carpool at strange times is one of them. We should rejoice in the fact that we have children who are healthy and who want to be involved in productive activity. The mishnayos are very clear about the dangers of youngsters sitting around the house doing nothing. In terms of payment, my view, as I stated earlier, is that extracurriculars should be open to all and part of the regular budget. I don’t think they should affect tuition.


Rabbi Shmuel Strickman

Elementary School Menahel, Yeshiva Darchei Torah The advent of technology came with a promise of a brighter future with less toil, greater efficiency, a shorter work week, and more leisure time. In reality, we work longer and harder because we are bombarded with an unmanageable amount of information. We are all at risk of falling prey to the depravity that is accessible with one click on our computer or telephone keyboard. In addition, the world political climate and the economic uncertainty all contribute to a society plagued with poor self-esteem, anxiety and depression. As mechanchim, parents are searching, and rightfully so, for shelters to insulate their young children from the malaise of society. We look for stimulating and enjoyable activities that will occupy and develop them. These extracurricular settings provide the academically challenged child with the outlet and success to build his

that we chose to travel.

Dr. Dov Finman

Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Faculty Fellow, Adelphi University Extracurricular activities are very important for your child’s social and emotional wellbeing, but your question makes it clear that all of these activities are taking a toll on your own emotional wellbeing. You have to chauffeur the kids to sports practice or instrument lessons on top of everything else that you have to do as a mother. You work, care for the home, your husband, and your children. There’s always a list of things you still need to get done, errands you need to run, work you need to complete, and it goes on and on. The nashim tzidkaniyos are the backbone of the Jewish family and deserve high praise for all their work. With regard to your children, they need to understand that each one gets what they need when they need it. Things aren’t always going to be equal or fair and sometimes something your sibling does is going to bother you or impinge on your space. The scenarios you described don’t seem to be unreasonable, but it’s all about what you can manage without going crazy. If you can’t take the child to soccer during dinner time and can’t arrange other transportation then the child needs to understand that you can only do so much. I’m sure there will be other activities in the future that he can participate in if he misses out on this one. Have any questions you’d like addressed? Feel free to send your parenting questions to the moderator, Dr. Dov Finman, at

APRIL 10, 2014

Rabbi Yisroel Kaminetsky

self-esteem. They can provide the opportunity for the active child to release his pent up energy that needs to be harnessed for yeshiva. These are real needs that a responsible parent should be ready to spend money on even if they are receiving tuition reductions in the yeshiva. Obviously, this changes if the activity is a luxury for your child. However, these activities cannot create undue stress for parents or increase the tension of sibling rivalry or negatively affect the household decorum. Engaging in extracurricular activities and “suffering the consequences” will only exasperate the problem. To provide for our children, we may need to think outside of the box. Find a driver or create a carpool or reschedule the time or change the location of the activity. If it is what the child or the family needs, make it work! Find a way! B’derech she’adam rotzeh leilech bo molichin oto. Hashem leads us on the path

A P R I L 1 0 , 2014

If my son wants to do an extracurricular activity, how much of an imposition on my family is reasonable. For example, having me or my husband doing carpool for soccer during dinner, or an instrument disturbing his siblings due to space considerations and noise. In addition, if a family is getting a tuition break, how do the panelists feel about spending money on extracurricular activities?


Moderated by Dr. Dov Finman


Parenting Today

T H E TJHEEWJ IESWHI SH H O MHEO M n E nA PMRAY I L 12 04 , 2014 2012


APRIL 10, 2014

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Compiled by Nate Davis

“Say What?” We want compensation for the [ten] Plagues that were inflicted upon [us] as a result of the curses that the Jews’ ancient forefathers [cast] upon our ancient forefathers, who did not deserve to pay for the mistake that Egypt’s ruler at the time, Pharaoh as the Torah calls him, committed. For what is written in the Torah proves that it was Pharaoh who oppressed the Children of Israel, rather than the Egyptian people. [But] they inflicted upon us the plague of locusts that didn’t leave anything behind them; the plague that transformed the Nile’s waters into blood, so nobody could drink of them for a long time; the plague of darkness that kept the world dark day and night; the plague of frogs; and the plague of the killing of the firstborn, namely every first offspring born to woman or beast, and so on. - Egyptian columnist Ahmad Al-Gama, calling for a lawsuit against Israel for the ten makkos

Clinton and Bush sat together at the big game. Clinton gave UConn congratulations on its big win while Bush gave Kentucky a “Mission Accomplished” congrats. – Jimmy Fallon

Plus you get a $50,000 parting ring. Enough for a down payment on a house. - A text by Louis Billittier to his ex-fiancée during an angry text exchange after he broke up with her via text message (A NY Supreme Court judge this week ruled that based on that text, the ex-fiancée gets to keep her engagement ring)

Officials in Finland say the Russian army is now conducting drills on its border. Or as Vladimir Putin calls that, “window shopping.” – Jimmy Fallon

As you know … our dear dog Barney, who had a special place in my heart, I introduced him to Putin. Putin kind of dissed him and said, “You really call that a dog?” A year later, your mom and I go to visit and Vladimir … says, “Would you like to meet my dog?” Out bounds this huge hound, obviously much bigger than a Scottish terrier, and Putin looks at me and says, “Bigger, stronger and faster than Barney.” I just took it in. I didn’t react. I just said, “Wow, anybody who thinks ‘my dog is bigger than your dog’ is an interesting character.” -Former President George W. Bush in an NBC interview with his daughter talking about the Russian leader

Mrs. Pelosi’s problem is her spine doesn’t reach her brain. - Liz Cheney on Fox News

Money in politics may at times seem repugnant to some, but so does much of what the First Amendment vigorously protects. If the First Amendment protects flag burning, funeral protests and Nazi parades — despite the profound offense such spectacles cause — it surely protects political campaign speech despite popular opposition. - Chief Justice John G. Roberts in the Supreme Court’s recent decision which struck down limits on campaign contributions

The prisoners were not released by Israel on the day they were supposed to be released and then another day passed and another day, and then 700 units were approved in Jerusalem and then poof — that was sort of the moment. - Secretary of State John Kerry testifying in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and blaming Israel for the Mideast peace talks falling apart

Rats are usually people that were with other rats. I was not and am not a rat, because I wasn’t with the rats. I’m a cat. I chase rats… I’ve done a lot of things in life. Some that if I could do again, I would do differently. But in this situation, I did what was right. - Al Sharpton at a press conference addressing a recent report that he acted as an FBI mob informant in the 1980s

But it is better than the national average. - White House Spokesman Jay Carney’s response to a reporter pointing out that although President Obama is focusing on women’s pay equality, female staff members at the White House are paid less than male staff members overall

There’s a kid here in New York who has been accepted to all eight Ivy League colleges. Even his parents were like, “Nerd.” - Jimmy Fallon

Toronto’s city council voted on whether to name a street after Nelson Mandela and whether to congratulate Canada’s Olympic athletes. Both votes passed 40-1. Can you guess who that one vote against was? Rob Ford. He now says he got the buttons confused. Come on, Toronto, how could you not re-elect this guy? He’s the best. And it’s Wednesday. This is the first mistake he’s made all week. – Jimmy Kimmel Ford also voted against naming a street after Nelson Mandela. But he claims that he simply hit the wrong button. Then people who voted for Rob Ford were like, “Been there.” – Jimmy Fallon

The Discovery Channel just announced plans for a new miniseries. It’s hosting a race to land an unmanned spacecraft on the moon. So technically savvy individuals can compete to see who can get their spacecraft to the moon first. It will be televised live. The show aims to prove that people who are bright and determined and work hard can accomplish anything we already accomplished 50 years ago. – Jimmy Kimmel

Tonight UConn played Kentucky in the men’s NCAA championship. The UConn women’s team, the Lady Huskies, also made it to the championship. The team was really excited until they remembered they’re called “Lady Huskies.” - Jimmy Fallon

I hate my job. I hate my job. I hate my job. - What rouge Manhattan court stenographer Daniel Kochanski typed over and over during at least 30 trials, instead of transcribing the actual court proceedings

The White House says it’s surpassed its goal for people enrolled in Obamacare. It’s amazing what you can achieve when you make something mandatory and fine people if they don’t do it, and keep extending the deadline for months. – Jimmy Fallon

The GOP has proposed the same ideas so many times. It’s like that movie ‘Groundhog Day,’ except it’s not funny. If they tried to sell this sandwich at Zingerman’s, they’d have to call it the stinkburger or the meanwich. - President Obama mocking the Republicans’ budget proposals during a speech at University of Michigan House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan just released his budget proposal for 2015. Of course, a lot of people are criticizing it. For example, during a speech yesterday President Obama referred to the budget as a “stinkburger” and a “meanwich.” Ryan called Obama immature, while Chris Christie called to see if he had any more of those stinkburgers or meanwiches. – Jimmy Fallon

I’m going to say this and it will be on tape and so be it. The way I look at this is someone who comes to our country because they couldn’t come legally ... and they crossed the border because they had no other means to work, to be able to provide for their family, yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love, it’s an act of commitment to [their] family. - Jeb Bush in an interview with Fox News

Authorities at JFK airport arrested a man with seven pounds of cocaine hidden inside goat meat. He forgot that one key rule of smuggling something weird which is: don’t hide it in something even weirder. - Jimmy Fallon It occurred to me the other day that the zealously proIsrael billionaire Sheldon Adelson and Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, actually have one big thing in common. They are both trying to destroy Israel. Adelson is doing it by loving Israel to death and Khamenei by hating Israel to death. –New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman arguing that Sheldon Adelson’s staunch support of Israel is counterproductive (because he doesn’t espouse left-wing views) Dozens of UConn students were arrested after they smashed windows and broke streetlights while celebrating their team’s win. Yep, people in Connecticut haven’t gotten that rowdy since J. Crew had a sale on pocket squares. - Jimmy Fallon A couple in Michigan is being sued for $2 million after they burned down their apartment complex while trying to cook a squirrel with a blowtorch. I’m not an accountant, but it SOUNDS like they might not have $2 million. - Seth Myers U.N. experts are saying that climate change could start threatening the world’s supply of fruits and vegetables. Then Americans said, “OK, let us know when it starts affecting Twinkies and Hot Pockets.” – Jimmy Fallon

APRIL 10, 2014

If you still haven’t enrolled [in Obamacare], you might have to pay a penalty called the “individual shared responsibility payment,” which is 1 percent of your salary. Then Americans said, “Good thing I don’t have a job.” - Jimmy Fallon

You don’t want to go there, buddy! You don’t want to go there, okay?! - Attorney General Eric Holder to Rep. Louie Gohmert (RTX) during a House hearing, after Gohmert brought up the fact that Holder was held in contempt of Congress in 2012

The Kremlin announced today that Vladimir Putin and his wife have officially divorced. She’ll get the house and the car and he’ll get Crimea, Ukraine, Belarus… - Seth Myers


They say adapt or die. At my age, I feel that I can’t adapt, because the new age is not an age that I grew up to understand. I see everything as cutting corners. All the old-fashioned ways of doing things have gone. People are becoming more and more remote. We are becoming robots. It is this lack of humanity. - An 89-year-old British woman who was not terminally ill but was approved for assisted suicide, explaining why she was ending her life

Hillary Clinton yesterday made some very strong remarks about the media. She said that the media treat powerful women with a double standard. Or as it got reported in most places, “Hillary Clinton shows off sassy new haircut.” - Jimmy Fallon


Chris Christie, what a guy. He allegedly closes down the George Washington Bridge. Everybody goes crazy. And he says, “I’ll handle this. I’m going to investigate myself.” So he investigates himself. He finds out that he, in fact, is innocent. He came up with a classic defense, “If the pants don’t fit, you must acquit.” – David Letterman

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From My Private Art Collection Rebbetzin Naomi N. Herzberg

Art Expression in the Haggadah

he Pesach haggadah is a treasure which the Jewish people lovingly use at the seder and during the entire yom tov of Pesach. Depicted in the haggadah are many illuminated and illustrated pieces of art which so eloquently help us tell stories and narratives accompanied by visuals of the history of our nation. These historical illustrations are exciting to see, especially for young children. They are known to help make the stories come alive. As literature suggests, the earliest known printed haggadah was from Prague, dated 1526. Many of these ancient haggadot were illustrated with medieval and biblical scenes. The motifs used in the design of a haggadah do change with the times, but the story remains the same. The artistic license allows the particular artist expressive opportunities to create unusual and interesting visuals relating to each portion of the haggadah. Some of the pictures might appear sad and some might appear hopeful. The ultimate experience is one of shared values and tradition for all of Am Yisroel. Many of us have collections from all over the world. FamiA haggadah from 1726 lies enjoy using collected haggadoth handed down from generation to generation. Haggadoth have become a collectors’ item amongst those interested in Judaic art. Some are finished with a beautiful cover in leather or silver. These covers are also embossed with gold or engraved in silver. I, for one, have my own wide variety of haggadoth which I cherish. The haggadoth all have various writings from talmidei chachamim

As we read through our haggadoth on Pesach we will all gain so much from this experience. Judaic art adds such a wonderful dimension to the spirit of yom tov! which are wonderful. We share stories, explanations, and writings with our family and friends. We are all so fortunate to have this special opportunity presented at the yom tov seder and table throughout Pesach. Questions are asked and then answered with wonderful renditions to look at which make it all so beautiful and pleasant. Many haggadoth are written with artistic renditions of the Hebrew alphabet which adds a feeling of royalty and is uplifting. As we read through our haggadoth on Pesach we will all gain so much from this experience. Judaic art adds such a wonderful dimension to the spirit of yom tov! Wishing all the readers of my column a chag kasher v’sameach. Rebbetzin Naomi N. Herzberg is a professional art educator, artist and designer. Among her known artwork is a floral sculpture presented to Tipper Gore, Blair House, Washington, D.C. Presently she is the Director of Operations at Shulamith School for Girls. Please feel free to email with questions and suggestions for future columns.


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Cover Story Nachum Soroka

Leaving the Promised Land to Settle Crimea The Bitter Story of a Group of Jewish Settlers Who Left Israel to Start a Kibbutz in the Crimean Peninsula

While the world stands aghast at the events taking place in Ukraine and the Crimean peninsula, many wonder if, indeed, a small, quiet landmass can send our world powers into a third world war. While Vladimir Putin may consider Crimea a significant part of the Russian motherland and others may embrace it as a culturally independent state of homogeneous peoples, few people are aware of its significance to the State of Israel and the Zionist movement. In September 1927, citing “telegrams from Moscow,” Haaretz newspaper reported that negotiations were taking place between a head of the Labor Battalion in Palestine and Stalin’s Soviet government. Menachem Elkind, the aforementioned Zionist leader, was like many of his Zionist compatriots, a hardcore Socialist ideologue whose vision of a Jewish State was necessarily based upon a country of kibbutzim and organized pioneer labor. Elkind immigrated to Palestine during the Third Aliyah (which took place between 1919 and 1923), but was quickly disillusioned with the nascent settlement and the prospect of it being home to “Zionist Communism.” The intention of his negotiations with Moscow: to get chalutzim to leave Israel and found a Zionist settlement in Crimea. Elkind was a charismatic visionary and when the negotiations came to fruition in 1928, he boarded a ship back to Russia with a few dozen Jewish comrades. In all, about one hundred Zionist settlers left Palestine that year in his wake to establish a commune in Crimea. Elkind envisioned a Jewish commune on the whole Crimean peninsula, but to this small group, the Soviet authorities granted a large tract of land, some sheep,

“You dragged more than a hundred people here. What were you thinking?”

Children on a settlement in Ukraine

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a barn, a chicken coop, work animals, a tractor and farm equipment. It was called Via Nova – A New Path. Perhaps Elkind viewed himself as a modern reincarnation of Moshe Rabbeinu, leading his flock to a far out paradise, however fraught with uncertainty the path to get there was. Regardless of his personal feelings about himself and his mission, his followers’ grumblings certainly sound like those of a nation stalled in the desert. Writes Shira Gurshman, a member of the Crimean kibbutz who originally emigrated in 1923 at the age of seventeen to Palestine from Lithuania and then moved back to Crimea with Elkind in 1928, “It was the dead of winter and all we had were sweaters and sandals. The passersby stop us and admiringly touch our English sweaters. Our sandals, with their thick soles, also attract attention. The children kept shouting, ‘We want to go home’. We put them to bed. In the morning we gave them hot water and black bread. They ate and shouted, ‘We want bananas!’ but they didn’t have the strength to scream for too long. We dressed them in clothes padded with cotton wool.” Elkind’s mission also did little to endear him among the Zionist leaders of the time. Yitzhak Sadeh, a Labor Battalion leader and later a commander of the Palmach strike force, accompanied the emigrants to the port as they were leaving Palestine. Sadeh called out: “Listen to me, get off the ship! Take the children and come with me. They will lack for nothing! I hope I’m wrong, but you will miss your freedom in the Stalinist prison!” Eliahu Ben Horin wrote in the newspaper Doar Hayom about “the great loss we have suffered.” “These were Zionists, they were pioneers – perhaps the best of our pioneers – but they betrayed the Zionist idea and betrayed the Land of Israel.” Joseph Berger-Barzilai, a founder of the Palestine Communist Party, accused Elkind’s group of the greatest treachery: “While the survivors of the Zionist movement were persecuted in the Soviet Union and their comrades were sent to prison and exile, there was a group of Zionists, former pioneers, agricultural laborers from the Jezreel Valley, who decided to return to the Soviet Union.” A Zionist writer in 1933 in another settlement in the Crimea described the experience as “a small group of Jewish pioneers who deWomen in Via Nova, photo courtesy of Beit HaTfutzot cided to recommence life as tillers of the soil, the process was slow and painful. Eight years have passed, years of hard toil. Not in vain. The Kolchoz (collective farm) ‘Icor’ has already become one of the most prosperous in Crimea. A small group of pioneers have pointed the way out. Thousands of Jews who were slowly perishing in the villages, followed them.” Via Nova, however, seemed destined to fail from inception. Its membership never surpassed one hundred. Writes Gurshman, “It was hard in the barn. It was


APRIL 10, 2014


“The winds raged on the deserted plains, and when they whipped your face it was hard to breathe.”

Working the land

a cold winter. The supervisor, Lena, was in the barn to make sure the waste didn’t freeze the cows’ feet. The winds raged on the deserted plains, and when they whipped your face it was hard to breathe.” When members would return from trips to the neighboring villages’ markets with bread and wheat in the kibbutz’s oxcarts, “some members immediately released the oxen because they came back so hungry and cold they lay down and fell asleep immediately; you could walk on them like on a bridge without them feeling it.” Ultimately, the pioneers’ frustration turned into ire, even leading to death threats against Elkind. Gurshman recalls telling him, “Elkind ... you dragged more than a hundred people here. What were you thinking? You dreamer, how could you consider such a thing! Just know that I’m going to kill you!” She writes further, “If Elkind were alive we’d cut his head off! He took people from a warm place, where there was no need for warm clothes, felt boots and furs, and sent them to this country in the winter Shira Gurshman’s account of the kibbutz highwith little children born in Palestine!” lights the hardships for the settlers The settlers’ new neighbors were predictably not fond of the returnees, and it was only a matter of time before the settlers’ generous welcomers, the Soviet government itself, turned against them. By the mid-1930s the Soviet persecutions began, as they were wary of these “traitors and Zionists.” They disbanded the kibbutz and replaced it with a Soviet collective farm called, ironically, “Brotherhood of Nations.” They then recruited Ukrainians and Tatars to join the farm to undermine any Jewish or Hebrew character it possessed. Many members were forced to leave while others were exiled during the Stalinist purges. The rest were murdered by Nazis in 1941. As for Via Nova’s leader, Menachem Elkind abandoned his followers for Leningrad in 1934 and was arrested by the Soviets four years later. No one knows his fate.


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