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SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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THE CHAZON ISH ZT”L (MAASEH ISH VOL. 7 103) WOULD SAY: SOMETIMES ONE MUST DO HISHTADLUS WITH DEEDS TOO. BUT IF ONE DOES HISHTADLUS WITH DEEDS BUT HE DOESN’T DAVEN, HE HASN’T COMPLETED HIS OBLIGATION FOR HISHTADLUS, FOR THE PRIMARY HISHTADLUS IS TEFILLAH. THIS IS BECAUSE TEFILLAH ISN’T LIP SERVICE. TEFILLAH IS A TRUE CONVERSATION WITH HASHEM. IT IS A PRIVATE CONVERSATION, SINCE AS FAR AS HE IS CONCERNED NO ONE ELSE IS AROUND. THERE IS NO GREATER HISHTADLUS THAN WHEN ONE PRAYS WITH THIS AWARENESS, AND WITH ALL HIS HEART, THEN HIS TEFILLOS WILL BEAR FRUIT.

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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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Dear Readers, We have witnessed the world change right before our eyes. Laws, perspectives, and attitudes which we would have never dreamed of have interrupted our familiar reality. For the believer, this isn’t as startling. It’s no virtue to trust in mankind, and of course the Creator’s mind surpasses our reason and imagination. Yet, we still walk around in a daze. We worry that society is crumbling. Political discord infiltrates our personal lives. The tool called fear is being successfully deployed all around us. Many of the good habits we worked on in previous years were shaken up in 5780: being careful to daven with a minyan, visiting the lonely, and helping the elderly. We’ve had to delay gatherings —weddings, bar mitzvahs, siyums—or at least reduce their size and scope. As they become safe again, we’ll need to dig deep to recommit to these exercises in growth and joy. Indeed, our introspection in this month of Elul must include a pledge to restart what was lost and to take our avodas Hashem to the next level. We are the cusp of global change. To the observant Jew, this always indicates an additional step towards Geulah Sheleimah. Let’s not fall asleep at the wheel. Let’s continue putting extra effort into every moment’s action, speech, or deed. One never knows, we might be wrapping up the final act of exile and commencing the first act of redemption. Wishing you a wonderful Shabbos Selichos,

Shalom

T H E P R E M I E R J E W I S H N E W S PA P E R H I G H L I G H T I N G L A’ S O R T H O D OX C O M M U N I T Y The Jewish Home is an independent bi-weekly newspaper. Opinions expressed by writers are not neces­sarily the opinions of the publisher or editor. The Jewish Home is not responsible for typographical errors, or for the kashrus of any product or business advertised within. The Jewish Home contains words of Torah. Please treat accordingly. FOR HOME DELIVERY, OR TO HAVE THE LATEST ISSUE EMAILED TO YOU FREE OF CHARGE, SEND A MESSAGE TO EDITOR@JEWISHHOMELA.COM


TheHappenings Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

OBITUARY: Cecilia Krayndler On Monday, May 25, 2020 (2 Sivan), Cecilia Krayndler passed away at the age of 61. Cecilia was a loving and devoted mother, grandmother, sister, and aunt who left us all too soon. Cecilia was a woman who put everyone’s needs above her own, whose selflessness knew no bounds, and who was humble in all ways—so humble, in fact, that she would absolutely hate that we’ve published an obituary about her. Growing up by the mountains of Ukraine and settling within the hills of North Hollywood, she came

to America to give her children a better life. This was her life’s mission. She was an Olympic-level latke maker, beef stroganoff specialist, and lamb chop enthusiast. She never met a potato that she couldn’t cook, or a grandchild that she couldn’t spoil. She lived for taking care of everyone around her, from family to strangers, and made you feel like you were one of her own the instant you met her. Cecila’s generous spirit was only surpassed by her strength and resilience. She

never let anything get in her way, and her indomitable spirit encouraged her family and friends to persist in the face of many struggles. We are comforted to know that she is reunited with her beloved parents, likely sharing a cup of coffee as we speak, watching Russian soap operas and discussing what everyone’s going to have for dinner tonight. Cecilia is survived by her son Leon (Shalvi) and his five children, daughter Sasha (Solly) and her three children,

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The Week In News Living with the Times

By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz Publisher of the Yated Ne’eman Fear is a uniquely Jewish attribute. We used to be referred to as “Ultra-Orthodox,” but now we are called “Chareidim,” loosely translated as “those who fear.” What is at the root of that designation? Is it complimentary or is the adjective meant to be derogatory? In fact, the posuk praises people who fear. Shlomo Hamelech, the wisest of all men, states, “Ashrei odom mefacheid tomid” (Mishlei 28:24). The yorei Shomayim, the choreid ledvar Hashem, is always fearful, making sure that he lives the proper life. We have a holy chain of fear transmitted through the generations, from rebbi to talmid and parents to children. In our generation, when yirah in the big world is all but a forgotten word unless it relates to Covid, and respect is almost gone, among Chareidim there exists a tangible fear borne of respect. Rashi, at the beginning of this week’s parsha, offers a puzzling explanation of the juxtaposition of parshiyos (Devorim 29: 9). He quotes the Medrash which states that after Klal Yisroel heard the curses described in Parshas Ki Savo, they were so distressed and frightened that their faces turned green. They were despondent, as they feared that they were ill-equipped to observe all the Torah’s commandments and were mortified at the ramifications of non-observance. Moshe reassured them, saying, “Atem nitzovim hayom. Although you’ve angered Hashem numerous times over the years - with the meraglim, the Eigel, and other sins - you are still standing here and haven’t been destroyed.” At first glance, the answer seems self-defeating. Imagine a parent warning his children that if they misbehave, they will suffer serious consequences. When the children react with fright, the parent reassures them that the threat isn’t really that serious after all and brings a proof to that effect. In last week’s parsha, the Torah relates that Moshe told the Jewish people that when they crossed the Yardein into Eretz Yisroel, they were to build a mizbei’ach upon which to offer olos and shelomim

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

Anyone Can Be Chareidi and celebrate in front of Hashem. Where was this mizbei’ach constructed? Was it on Har Grizim, the mountain upon which the brachos (blessings) were recited, or Har Eivol, where the kolalos (curses) were proclaimed? Amazingly, the mizbei’ach was to be arranged on Har Eivol, the mountain of the klalos. Meforshim explain that Divine punishment is not meant as a consequence or retribution for a sinful act. It is a tool used by a loving Father to guide His wayward children onto the correct path. What is important is that they behave properly, not the imposition of the penalty. Therefore, the korbanos were brought on Har Eivol in appreciation of the nudge reminding them to stay on the path of goodness. Thus, it follows that when Moshe saw that following the recitation of the klalos “peneihem morikos,” their faces had changed colors, he understood that the klalos had achieved their desired effect and the people would behave properly. This is the fear of chareidim. It is not a fear that leads to desperation, but rather a fear that leads to joy, as expressed in the posuk (Tehillim 2) which states, “Ivdu es Hashem b’yirah, vegilu biradah - Serve Hashem with fear and rejoice in trembling.” We are inspired, optimistic people. Our fear does not hold us back. It motivates us. The mood during the days of Elul is supposed to be that of fear - fear of the impending trial we face on Rosh Hashanah. Those who tremble during Elul demonstrate through peneihem morikos that they are in tune with the time, and because they are fearful, they will merit to be vindicated on Judgment Day. The fear during Elul is not born of panic or dread, but rather reverence and awe generated by being in the presence of Hashem at a time when He is closest to us. The holy fusion of fear and joy found amongst those who are chareidim portrays their inner faith and deep vision; the perception that fear, the peneihem morikos, is the reaction desired by Heaven. Shomayim doesn’t punish. It reminds. Ehrliche Yidden are attuned to these reminders. The best way to appreciate this season

is to approach it as chachomim, with our eyes open and hearts awake to the messages being sent our way. It is easy to ignore them, to be apathetic or blind to the messages of Hashem. When we understand that yissurim come to strengthen us and when things don’t seem to go the way we would like it is for a reason, we are on the path of personal redemption. Peneihem morikos. The fright itself can suffice to evoke Divine mercy. Think about it. If used correctly, fear can be the healthiest of emotions, a tool to craft a blessed new year for us and our families. At one of his Thursday night shiurim, when all sorts of questions were welcomed from the audience, Rav Avigdor Miller explained the nature of bitachon. “Bitachon means Hashem will take care of you if you trust in Him, but that trust requires you to do what He wants you to do, and He wants you to be ‘mefashfeish bema’asov,’ to search into your ways. Self-scrutiny is a mitzvah just like wearing tefillin is a mitzvah. “If a man has a toothache,” continued Rav Miller, “and he goes to the dentist, and the dentist says, ‘Open wide,’ he should think, ‘Why do I have to open my mouth wide? Because I shouldn’t have opened my mouth so wide at other times. I opened my mouth against my wife; that’s why I now have to open it for the dentist. I opened my mouth against my fellow Jew, so now I have to deal with this.’” Living with this awareness, Rav Miller was teaching, is an expression of faith. Seeing Hashem’s message in all occurrences is empowering, because it underscores how relevant our every action is and how important it is to Hashem to prod us on to the right path. Perhaps this answers the paradox regarding the nature of Rosh Hashanah. The day contains the obligation of experiencing the joy of a Yom Tov, yet, at the same time, the fear of judgment is just as essential. We can understand it by comparing it to the fear experienced by someone who has sat in conversation with a great person. Sure, you are overcome by awe, it is sometimes difficult to speak, and you

choose your words carefully, but despite that, at the same time, you feel valued and relevant when you are in the presence of greatness. When one is in the presence of greatness, especially when the great person reacts in a kind and loving fashion, one is at the same time joyful and fearful, as the posuk states, “Vegilu biradah.” During these Elul days, it is our certainty of Hashem’s proximity and our assurance that He is listening closely that is the cause of both our simcha at the opportunity it affords and the fear of the magnitude of His power and might. “Dirshu Hashem behimatzo - Seek out Hashem when He is accessible,” says the posuk. This is the most empowering time of the year, the exalted moments when we are being ushered into His presence. He will scrutinize our actions and seek to help us improve, but by being vigilant and attuned to His will, we ask that He give us the opportunity to improve without being rebuked or disciplined. We say twice daily in L’Dovid, “Hashem ori veyishi mimi ira.” What we are saying is that Hashem illuminates the path before us, helping us identify mistakes we have made, and “veyishi,” enabling us to patch things up. As He helps us do teshuvah, straighten out our lives, and return to His embrace, “mimi ira,” we need not fear that people will harm us. The Gemara in Maseches Chagigah (5b) relates that Rav Papa said, “Ein atzivus lifnei Hakadosh Boruch Hu - There is no grief in Hakadosh Boruch Hu’s presence.” Now that we are in the period when we are closest to Hashem, there should be no grief, even as we approach the Day of Judgment, when all of mankind will undergo Heavenly scrutiny. We are all faced with problems and wonder how we can deal with and overcome them. Know that you are not alone. Hashem is right there, alongside you, guiding and assisting you as you seek to find your way in the darkness. He is there all year, yet He is even closer during these days of Elul and the coming Aseres Yemei Teshuvah. Don’t grow despondent. Don’t think that the job is too difficult for you. Don’t think that you can’t overcome the nisyonos that you are faced with. Don’t worry that you won’t succeed in doing a proper teshuvah for your aveiros. Don’t think that you won’t be able to bring yourself to the level that will ensure that you emerge zakai in din. Those who fear Hashem feel Him. Those who fear Hashem merit His closeness. Those who fear Hashem know that He is there with them, helping them approach Him. Everyone can be a Chareidi, no matter how they dress, where they live or what they do for a living. May we all merit to be Chareidim, people who fear Hashem, and emerge meritorious on the Yom Hadin.


The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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Sarah's The WeekCorner In News

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SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

Put the Glass Down and Let Go Sarah Pachter

A professor once held a glass half-filled with water in front of his class and asked, “How heavy do you think this is?” Students called out various answers: “Two ounces,” “Six ounces,” and so on. The professor looked at them and said, “You’re all right.” The students looked at each other, wondering, How could that be? until he added, “How heavy something feels just depends on how long you’ve been holding onto it.”1 The longer we carry painful experiences, the stronger the emotional tie to that person or circumstance becomes. Catherine Ponder, bestselling author, writes, “When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel.” A friend of mine was strongly chained to her smoking addiction. After years of unsuccessful attempts to quit on her own, she started seeing a hypnotist. She has not touched a cigarette since. “How is that possible?” I asked her. “You try this hypnosis thing, and you haven’t smoked a cigarette in two years! What did he say to you?” The hypnotist explained that most people know that smoking is unhealthy. Intellectually, they realize that stopping is the best option, but emotionally they pursue the immediate gratification of indulging. People can spend years battling between the subconscious and conscious, but usually break through from a wake-up call in the form of a health scare. After facing mortality,

the smoker realizes she simply cannot continue down this path. That’s when the hypnotist has the highest rate of success.2 Just like the smoker must stop using cigarettes, if they want to live, we too have emotional addictions, such as rage, painful memories, and jealousy that we must quit if we want to lead a healthy life. Jealousy, anger, and resentment only hurt the person feeling it, and therefore must stop if we want to lead our best lives. Here are three practical ways to let go. Be Proud Jill, a student of mine, relayed that she kept reliving an emotionally painful and difficult time in her life. She had trouble shaking the memories, and it was beginning to affect her daily functioning and happiness. I shared an idea that gave her an opportunity to move on. “Jill, turn your pain into pride. Instead of thinking about how painful that time period was, focus on how proud you should be to have survived it. Despite the circumstances, you were so responsible and brave, and that is remarkable.” It is important to validate the pain as real, and then move to more prideful thoughts. Turn your pain into pride, became a motto for her, and helped transform the negative memory into something positive. Distraction These days, while health experts tell us not to touch our face when outside the home, I find myself attempting to do it constantly! It’s hard to sway the mind from

1

2

Shared by Rabbi Tzvi Sytner

Source: Hypnotist Kerry Gaynor

thinking about something forbidden. One of the best ways to avoid negative thoughts or behaviors is to starve the thought by replacing it with another thought. The other day, I was checking in with my friend Eva Kohan, who is 98 years old. As a survivor of Auschwitz, and someone who has prevailed against unimaginable challenges, I asked her how she was able to let go of all the pain from the past. She answered, “I don’t know if I ever fully let go, but I try not to think about it. I replace the memories with distraction.” When painful memories and circumstances creep up, we have the power to busy our minds and comfort our bodies with healthy distraction. Regenerate One evening, I was reading a book about unusual animals to my daughter, and the axolotl really caught my attention. It is a unique salamander with a remarkable ability to regenerate. If a portion of its body becomes damaged when fleeing a predator, it is able to regrow its limbs by ‘letting go’ of damaged ones. It can recreate almost any body part, including its spine, jaws, and even its brain.3 It simply lets go of what is holding it back. Renewal is one of the greatest gifts we have as humans. When we 3 Jess Keating, Cute as an Axolotl, pg. 2

regenerate after hardship, we grow back even stronger and more secure. Another friend of mine is also a master of regeneration. Years ago, she was a victim of domestic violence. She chose to leave her husband and create a new life for herself and her children. Despite her difficult past, she is known to all as an upbeat and cheerful woman. She explained to me how this was possible. “I could have easily succumbed to depression. I had three children under the age of three. It was the middle of the year, and I was suddenly alone with no financial or emotional support. “I had a choice—to stay in the pain and not really be living, or to move forward and make a new life. I needed to create my own happiness. Focusing on my new life was my only way out. Rather than falling to despair, I viewed the separation as an opportunity for a fresh start.” She was able to view her life through a new set of glasses. She ignored her negative past while choosing renewal. She focused forward and was able to survive. Holding on to old wounds can cause deep-seated pain that sometimes leads to unhealthy comforts and addictions. Letting go of that pain is a choice. By feeling proud, distracting ourselves, and regenerating, we can move forward. It’s not easy, but we can let go of old pain, we can move one, and we can lead beautiful lives filled with joy. Put the heavy glass down and move forward, unburdened.


The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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ATTENTION: YESHIVOS & BAIS YAAKOVS WORLDWIDE!

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Feature The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

The ICC & Israel CAN THE U.S. AND ISRAEL FIGHT BACK AGAINST THE ICC’S AGENDA? By Shammai Siskind

O

N SEPTEMBER 10, 2018,

members of the Federalist Society, a conservative thinktank for law and public policy, gathered in the main conference room of the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. The thunderstorms raging outside provided the perfect backdrop for the address they were about to receive from then-National Security Advisor John Bolton. Bolton, well-known as a hardliner since coming to Washington in the 1980s, was about to use the venue to announce a pertinent policy stance of the Trump administration. Almost a year earlier, in November 2017, a prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague had submitted a request to superiors to open an investigation into alleged war crimes committed by the U.S. military in Afghanistan. One of the highlights of this proposed investigation were concerns over alleged abuse of Afghan detainees. Reportedly, there had been several instances in which U.S. interrogators had tortured detainees within Afghanistan as well as

at black sites in Poland, Romania, and Lithuania. While no claims of such incidents were filed by Afghanistan or any other country party to the ICC convention, this did not prevent pre-investigation steps from moving forward. Bolton made clear the United States sees no legitimacy in the ICC’s proceedings. “For all intents and purposes, the ICC is already dead to us,” Bolton told his listeners. He then went into detail stating what retaliatory steps would be taken in the event the Court takes actions against U.S. citizens. “We will ban its judges and prosecutors from entering the United States. We will sanction their funds in the U.S. financial system, and we will prosecute them in the U.S. criminal system.” In addition to slamming the Court’s legitimacy with respect to prosecuting Americans, Bolton made another important point. Not only would the administration view the indictment of U.S. citizens as a form of attack, but going after America’s allies would be seen as equally problematic. “If the court comes after us, Israel, or other U.S. allies, we will not sit quietly. [We] will use any means necessary to protect our citizens and

those of our allies from unjust prosecution by this illegitimate court,” he warned. While Bolton has long fallen from grace within the White House, the message conveyed by the former advisor nearly two years ago firmly remains the administration’s stance. Current officials have left little doubt of that as recent events have unfolded. Since Bolton’s speech, the ICC’s efforts targeting both the United States and Israel have proceeded pretty much in tandem. In March, the Court announced it would be moving forward with a probe into possible war crimes committed by U.S. personnel in Afghanistan. The decision was a reversal from an ICC panel decision in April that blocked the investigation. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo slammed the court for its overreach. “We’re going to take all the appropriate actions to ensure that American citizens are not hauled before this political body to settle political vendettas,” Pompeo said. Weeks later, the Secretary spoke out against The Hague once again in response to the Court’s current deliberations on Israel’s alleged crimes. “A court that attempts to exercise its power outside its jurisdiction is a political tool that makes a mockery of the law and due process.” The Secretary correctly pointed out that Israel, like the United States, is not subject to the ICC authority since neither nation is a signatory to the Rome Statute, the international convention that created the Court. Pompeo then warned, “If the ICC continues down its current course, we will exact consequences.”

A CONTENTIOUS HISTORY A confrontation between the ICC and both Israel and the U.S. was almost inevitable considering the two countries’ history with the Court. The strife between the U.S. and the ICC goes back to the ICC’s founding over twenty years ago when the court received its mandate. When the Rome Statute was drawn up in 1998, it was, at first, appealing to the United States. Who wouldn’t support an international court of justice designed to rid the world of the impunity enjoyed by the

Continued on page 12


The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

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Feature The Week In News

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Continued from page 10 worst war criminals and human rights violators? Bill Clinton signed the United States onto the Statute in December 2000. Shortly afterward, however, policymakers took an about-face. The alarming implications of the Rome Statute quickly became apparent to the majority of the U.S. Congress. The idea that American military officers would be able to be tried and punished by a legal body outside of the United States was too much for even the most globalist members of the Senate and House. In August 2002, just a few months following the government’s formal notice that it would not ratify the Statute, Congress passed the American Service-Members’ Protection Act (ASPA), which contained a number of clauses, including authorization of the President to “use all means necessary and appropriate to bring about the release of any U.S. or allied personnel being detained by, on behalf of, or at the request of the International Criminal Court.” Israel had a similar, although less roundabout, story of rejecting the ICC’s mandate. Israel’s delegation at the Rome Diplomatic Conference saw the provision to adjudicate cases of “transferring populations into occupied territory” as custom tailored to delegitimize the West Bank settlements. Indeed, the delegates wondered why a list of triable crimes that consists of such acts as “genocide” and “crimes against humanity” should include human settlement, even in cases where, for sake of argument, the land is wrongly occupied. Alas, Israel’s critics have for years compared settlements in Judea and Samaria to the worst human rights violations. This fact makes Israel’s hesitancy toward the Statute all the more prophetic. In recent years, the Criminal Court in The Hague has been spurred to investigate Israel in response to several incidents, all of which were extremely low-scale relative to other ongoing global conflicts. These included the 2010 flotilla raid in which the Comoros-flagged Mavi Marmara was boarded by Israeli commandos after trying to run Israel’s blockade of the Hamas-controlled Strip. Several years later, the ICC opened a case on Israel’s 2014 Gaza operation dubbed “Protective Edge” claiming that wonton attacks against civilian populations centers were orchestrated and ordered by high ranking Israeli officers and ministers. Both these and other similar investigations have never led to any actual steps being taken against Israel or Israeli officials. But this time around feels markedly different.

POISED TO STRIKE In early May, the ICC’s chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda submitted a request to a three-member panel of Court judges to seek the go-ahead for another probe into “Israeli war crimes in Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem.” The submission came after declaring that previous arrangements between Israel and the Palestinian Authority did not prevent the Court from acting, this despite clearly implied stipulations in such agreements – such as the 1993 Oslo Accords – that conflicts

between the parties would remain outside the courtrooms of The Hague. Over the next eight weeks, Israel became increasingly wary that ICC proceedings against Israeli officials would soon be underway. On July 16, Israeli media reported that the government was compiling an internal list of current and former Israeli leaders, both military and political, that could possibly be targets of an ICC case. While the complete roster of names is not known –apparently many, if not most, of the individuals do not even know their names are on it – the list almost certainly includes the likes of former IDF chief of staff Benny Gantz, former defense minister Naftali Bennet, former defense minister and current opposition MK Moshe Ya’alon, current IDF chief Aviv Kohavi, who during the 2014 war headed Is-

sive stance. Already in June the administration announced it was placing sanctions on ICC personnel including economic penalties and travel restrictions. Prosecutor Bensouda has already received a shot across the bow last year when the State Department revoked her U.S. visa. Now, true to the policy iterated by John Bolton two years ago, the administration has put full sanctions into place. As the U.S. made clear, the harsh move was also to send a message regarding Israel. Shortly before the penalties were announced, Secretary Pompeo told a podcast hosted by the American Enterprise Institute that he believes The Hague and the world will soon see “that we are determined to prevent having Americans and our friends and allies in Israel and elsewhere hauled in by this corrupt ICC.”

“A court that attempts to exercise its power outside its jurisdiction is a political tool that makes a mockery of the law and due process.” rael’s Military Intelligence, and even Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu himself. If reports of this secret list are true, it would represent the next step in Israel preparing for an ICC action. According to Hebrew media reports, Israel had already in June appointed a team culled from the National Security Council, the justice and foreign ministries, and the international department of the IDF military prosecution. The job of this group is to coordinate the country’s response to any ICC proceedings, a job which very likely includes preparing an actual defense for a future ICC trial. Israel understands it must be ready for the worst. The consequences of an ICC indictment could be serious indeed. Even though the U.S. and Israel find themselves in a similar position, the battles they are fighting as well as the stakes of those battles are drastically different. The risk to the United States of their personnel actually suffering penalties from ICC prosecution is quite low. For Israel, though, this is not the case. If an IDF officer, for instance, is found guilty of war crimes by the Court, he or she would be at risk of immediate arrest upon stepping foot in a country party to the Rome Statute. Various diplomatic arrangements between countries could make matters even worse, as a nation who is not a signatory to the Statute could be forced to extradite Israelis to a country that is.

THE PUSHBACK Israel, for its part, can do little other than brace for a possible legal bout. The United States, on the other hand, is taking a much more aggres-

While Israel has no direct part in these policy decisions, officials are banking on the effect they may have in getting the ICC to back off. Shortly after they were announced, Prime Minister Netanyahu expressed his gratitude for the decision. “I would like to thank President Trump and the Secretary of State Pompeo for their decision to sanction the International Court in The Hague,” said the premier to a press conference in early June. Will these steps by the U.S. have any deterring effect? That will likely remain in the realm of speculation. What is known, however, is that Israel recently benefited from a major reprieve, although not quite a victory. A few weeks ago, the ICC adjourned for its summer vacation without delivering a decision on beginning an investigation on Israel. This, despite consistent reports for weeks that such a decision was imminent. Some suggested this was the ICC signaling it was putting a final stop to the Israel case. But Israeli officials are not optimistic. Hebrew media reports that most legal experts in Jerusalem believe the Court will resume work on the case relatively soon.

ON PRINCIPLE In all likelihood, the saga of the ICC’s investigations into Israel and the U.S. will be with us for the foreseeable future. Both Jerusalem and Washington now have the chance to expose the ICC for the biased organization which it has become. With only four successful convictions since 2002 and having completely ignored other nations that actually codify human rights abuses in their laws, it is not only


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the Court’s efficacy but its very legitimacy as an organization that should and must be called into question. But perhaps more fundamentally, the ICC’s efforts regarding Israel and America are an obvious breach of the Court’s own mandate. The ICC was founded for a very specific purpose, and that is to solve the problem of impunity. Millions of victims of war crimes have over the years been left without any recourse due to the fact that no local or international body was capable or willing to deliver justice. In other words, the ICC is meant to investigate and prosecute crimes committed in countries that are not addressing the crimes of their own citizens. The cases of the United States and Israel do not meet this central criteria. Both nations have professional, functional legal systems that consistently prosecute both military and civil crimes. As Pompeo stated when announcing U.S. sanctions on the ICC: “When our own people do wrong, we lawfully punish those individuals, as rare as they are, who tarnish the reputation of our great U.S. military and our intelligence services,” said the secretary. “We hold our own accountable better than the ICC has done for the worst perpetrators of mass criminal atrocities.” Similarly, Israel’s military maintains a massive legal bureaucracy in the form of its Military Advocate General (MAG) Corps, an organization notoriously known for its heavy demands on the IDF’s operational proce-

dures. For the 2014 Gaza war alone, a conflict that lasted barely six weeks, the MAG opened no fewer than nineteen criminal investigations against soldiers suspected of “lawsof-warfare violations.” More than any other sign of corruption or bias, it is the fact that Israel and the United States are outside any reasonable understanding of the ICC’s mandate ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda that exposes what these investigations are really conflict. For example, in a petition delivered to about. The Court is attempting to advance policy the ICC several months ago, Germany declared agendas in the guise of judicial proceeding. In the any investigation into Israel by the Court illegitcase of Israel specifically, this reality could hardimate and stated that a resolution to the regionly be any clearer. Apparently, some ICC officials al conflict “can be achieved only through direct believe that by branding Israeli actions of self-denegotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.” fense as war crimes – a status that, as explained, Similar petitions have been sent to The Hague by would have real world consequences – they can six additional countries including Australia, the strong-arm its leaders into policy decisions of Czech Republic, and Austria. their liking and prevent Israel from taking such Despite the gradual progress and some modactions in the future. Even outside parties – many erate victories, Israel still has a long road ahead of whom signatories to the Rome Statute – have until it is in the clear from the ICC threat. No voiced their opinions that the ICC’s intended doubt this battle will continue to increase in priprobe into Israel is a tool to ultimately force concessions from Israel vis-à-vis the Palestinian ority as the ICC circles its target.

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The Week In News

Serbia and Kosovo Sign Historic Deal

Kosovo and Serbia signed their first normalization agreement on Friday following a week of negotiations brokered by President Donald Trump. The accord was inked by leaders of both countries in a round of negotiations overseen by Trump’s special envoy Richard Grenell and National Security Advisor Richard O’ Brien. The agreement attempts to bring the former Yugoslavian countries together by boosting economic ties. Deliberately avoiding political matters such as the bloody civil war that both countries fought for over a decade, Grenell and his team focused on measures that would strengthen both countries’ economies. The agreement included a U.S. commitment to invest in both countries with a special emphasis on creating jobs. The two adversaries will also implement free travel by ratifying airline, rail, and highway arrangements that were previously agreed upon. In addition, Kosovo will suspend its campaign to seek recognition in international organizations, while Serbia agreed to stop trying to convince other countries to “derecognize” its neighbor. “We will only have good agreements,” said Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti at the signing ceremony. In a nod to U.S. interests, both delegations promised to designate Hezbollah as “a terrorist organization” and work to stop Chinese companies from constructing 5G networks in their respective countries. “Serbia and Kosovo have each committed to economic normalization,” Trump said. “By focusing on job creation and economic growth, the two countries were able to reach a major breakthrough.” While allowing that the agreement didn’t solve the conflict’s core issues, Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic and Kosovo’s Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti called the accord a significant step forward. “Of course, speaking about politics, we haven’t resolved our problems. There are still a lot of differences between us, but this is a huge step forward,” Vucic said. “And

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

I’m once again profoundly grateful to [Trump] and to your people that you successfully got us here. “We didn’t speak about many items that we signed today but for us it’s very important that we are going to have a unified economic zone in an entire Western Balkans which will bring us to the real economic results for the benefit and for the sake of all our people,” Vucic added.

moon that permanently faces away from Earth and hopes to send a manned flight by 2024. “Space has always been symbolic of leadership, through prestige, that translates into strategic influence,” notes Joan Johnson-Freese, a U.S. Naval War College space expert. “China seeks to be acknowledged as the technology leader in Asia, and there is no more visible place to do that than space.”

Chinese Spacecraft Blasts Into Orbit

Terror in Germany Threatens Birmingham Sanctions Over British police launched an extensive manhunt for the perpetrator of a stabbing Russian Poisoning

An experimental Chinese spacecraft successfully blasted off into space on Saturday. According to the Xinhua state media agency, a Long March 2F rocket sent the craft into space from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the Gobi Desert. “After a period of in-orbit operation, the spacecraft will return to the scheduled landing site in China. It will test reusable technologies during its flight, providing technological support for the peaceful use of space,” said the report. The mission is said to be highly classified, with Chinese media refraining from mentioning what the purpose of the spacecraft is or any other information about it. During the launch, staff were warned by authorities not to film the lift-off or discuss it on the internet. Media reports were also told not to publish information relating to what the spacecraft is doing in orbit or the technologies it will be testing. “Airspace closure notices released Thursday provided the first indication of an imminent launch,” said Space News, an online science magazine. “No images of the spacecraft nor the launch have so far been released. An apparent higher-than-usual level of security surrounding the mission also prevented bystander images appearing on social media.” China has been investing heavily in its space program in recent years in an effort to transform itself from a manufacturing hub to a knowledge-based economy. In January 2019, China became the first country to send a rover to the side of the

Germany’s foreign minister threatened to sanction Russia for poisoning opposition leader Alexander Navalny. In an interview with the newspaper Bild Am Sonntag, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas suggested that Germany could “rethink” its participation on a gas pipeline with Russia over the poisoning of Navalny. “I hope the Russians won’t force us to change our position regarding the Nord Stream pipeline being built under the Baltic Sea,” said Maas. The billion dollar project would bring Russian gas directly to Germany, bypassing Ukraine and Georgia. He added that Germany would examine possible sanctions “if there won’t be any contributions from the Russian side regarding the investigation in the coming days, we will have to consult with our partners.” Maas acknowledged, however, that scrapping the gas pipeline would have a negative effect on the European economy currently reeling from the coronavirus. “Whoever demands this has to be aware of the consequences,” Maas said. “More than 100 companies from 12 European countries are involved (in the construction), about half of them from Germany.” Germany has demanded answers from Russian President Vladimir Putin after Navalny was poisoned last month. Navalny, a prominent Putin critic, collapsed after drinking poisoned tea at the airport and remains gravely ill at a Berlin hospital. Doctors said that his condition has “improved” since they took him out of a medically-induced coma. While Russia denies any connection to the affair, blood tests found that Navalny was poisoned with Novichok, a nerve agent often used by Russian intelligence against dissidents. It’s too early to determine the effects of the poison on Navalny. Novichok was famously used to poison ex-Russian spy Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia in England back in 2018 that was traced back to the Kremlin. “We have yet to find a substance that

is more dangerous to the human body than the Novichok series,” chemical weapons expert Gwyn Winfield told ABC News. “There is no bulletproof vest that you can wear that can protect you from Novichok. It sends a very clear warning that to whoever might criticize [Putin’s] regime, in whatever country that they are in, that [Putin’s] sort of long hand will reach out and grasp them.”

attack in Birmingham that killed one and injured nine, arresting a man on Monday morning whom they say committed the murder. The slew of stabbing attacks occurred on Sunday in Birmingham’s busy shopping district. The assailant stabbed ten people at multiple locations over a two-hour period before escaping the scene. West Midlands Police cordoned off major traffic arteries and flooded the city with patrols in an effort to nab the person responsible. Authorities requested that citizens turn over any cellphone or CCTV footage they have of the incident. Police distributed a photo of a man wearing a baseball cap, a dark sweater, and white pants and have asked the public for any tips. The man pictured was seen on security camera footage loitering at one of the crime scenes shortly before the stabbings occurred. “We can now confirm that we’ve launched a murder investigation following the events in Birmingham city center overnight,” said the West Midlands Police. The motive for the attacks is currently unknown and Chief Superintendent Steve Graham told reporters that “there is absolutely no suggestion at all that this is terror-related.” “The events during the early hours of this morning are tragic, shocking and understandably frightening,” Graham added. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab called the stabbings “a very serious incident” and called on Birmingham residents to remain “very vigilant.”

Tensions at the China-India Border Tensions along the border between China and India are becoming strained. Over the weekend, Tapir Gao, an Indian lawmaker, said in a tweet that Chinese troops abducted five Indian civilians near the disputed border between the two countries. China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said that Beijing has “no details to release yet,” but that it also has “never recognized so-called ‘Arunachal Pradesh,’  which is China’s south Tibet region.” Gao is from the Arunachal Pradesh state.


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Tensions between the two countries have been simmering in recent months over a disputed border farther west in the Ladakh region, which boasts the world’s highest landing strip and a glacier that feeds one of the largest irrigation systems in the world.

The situation escalated dramatically in June when both sides fought with clubs, stones, and fists, leaving 20 Indian soldiers dead and dozens wounded. India and China have held several rounds of talks in hopes of resolving the tensions with no success. Last week, India said its soldiers thwarted “provocative” movements by China’s military twice. In turn, China’s Defense Ministry accused Indian troops of crossing established lines of control and creating provocations along the border. The two nations fought a border war in 1962 that also spilled into Ladakh and ended in a fragile truce. Since then, troops from both sides have patrolled and guarded the undefined border area, according to protocols worked out by the two countries that included not using firearms against each other. India unilaterally declared Ladakh a federal territory and separated it from Kashmir in August 2019, ending its semi-autonomous status. China was among the countries to strongly condemn the move, raising it at international forums, including the U.N. Security Council.

Russia Shoots for the Moon

Russia is making significant progress in its effort to launch its first lunar lander since the 1970s. According to Scientific American, Russia has set October 21, 2021, as the scheduled launch date for the Luna-25 moon lander. The report marks the first time that Russia has set an official date for the liftoff and comes after the Russian Academy of Sciences delivered advanced equipment to Moscow’s federal space agency Roscosmos. Russia has not sent a moon rover to space since the 1970’s, and Luna-25 is seen as a big step forward for the country’s space capabilities. The spacecraft will blast off with 66 pounds of advanced scientific

gear that will explore the moon’s surface for rare minerals and soil samples. “The Luna-25 space project opens a long-term Russian lunar program, which includes missions to study the moon from orbit and surface, the collection and return of lunar soil to Earth, as well as, in the future, the construction of a visited lunar base and full-scale development of our satellite,” said Roscosmos. Russia’s effort to return to space is part of a worldwide race to develop game-changing technologies that would expand its power and influence in space. China has already successfully sent two rovers to the moon’s surface and launched

a top-secret craft on Saturday. Meanwhile, both India and Israel attempted moon landings this past year, while Japan is slated to send a probe of its own in 2022. The U.S., Russia’s traditional adversary in space, has also ramped up its space exploration efforts, with President Donald Trump initiating the Artemis Project that will send human astronauts to the moon in 2024. Following years of inaction, NASA is funding a moon landing in 2021 and another two lunar probes will blast off in 2022. In May, two NASA astronauts entered orbit in a collaboration between the U.S. government and SpaceX.

UK’s Corona Approach

This week, England imposed a 14-day quarantine for travelers arriving from sev-

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The Week In News en Greek islands. The decision in a shift to its coronavirus strategy, as domestic cases of the disease continued to rise. It’s the first time London has taken a regional approach to quarantine rules. Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced the measure amid mounting concern in Johnson’s administration after 2,948 further virus cases were reported Monday, on top of 2,988 on Sunday, in highs not seen since May. “Our top priority has always been to keep domestic infection rates down,” Shapps said. “Through the use of enhanced data we will now be able to pinpoint risk in some of the most popular islands, providing increased flexibility to add or remove them – distinct from the mainland – as infection rates change.” Shapps said Britain’s testing regime is being stretched as he rejected calls for travelers to be tested at airports in order to avoid the need for quarantine. Johnson’s government, which has been criticized over the availability of coronavirus tests throughout the pandemic, is under pressure to minimize disruption for holiday-makers and help Britain’s beleaguered travel sector recover. Crete, Santorini, Lesvos, Tinos, Serifos, Mykonos and Zakynthos will be removed from the quarantine exemption list on Wednesday. While restrictions will be enforced for the islands, a so-called travel corridor with mainland Greece and other Greek islands will allow restriction-free

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

travel. The measure announced on Monday applies to travelers arriving in England, with devolved governments of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland making their own decisions. The Greek islands join countries including Spain, France, Switzerland, Jamaica and the Czech Republic on the quarantine list. Jonathan Van Tam, England’s deputy chief medical officer, warned that people need to refocus on efforts to stop the spread of the virus. “People have relaxed too much, now is the time for us to re-engage, and to realize that this a continuing threat to us,” he told the BBC on Monday evening. “The fact that 17- to 21-year-olds are not becoming ill means they are lucky, but they also forget because the disease is not severe for them that they are potent spreaders.”

China’s Tit-for-Tat with Journalists

China has refused to renew the press cards of several journalists working for U.S. companies, as Beijing kicks back against the treatment of its reporters in America. Both the U.S. and China have restricted reporter visas, with China expelling journalists. China’s foreign ministry was no longer renewing press credentials for U.S. media employees in the country, according to the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China (FCCC). At least five journalists at four media groups – including The Wall Street Journal, CNN and Bloomberg – had been denied new press cards. Foreign journalists are usually not allowed to work in China without valid press cards, which are also a requirement for gaining a residence permit. Reporters are instead receiving letters that temporarily allow them to work using their expired press cards. But the letters “could be revoked at any time, thus putting them at constant threat of expulsion,” the Club said in a statement. In May, the U.S. Homeland Security Department shortened the visa for Chinese journalists in the U.S to 90 days. China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian denied that any unusual restrictions had been placed on the journalists. The press cards “are currently being

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sued in June 2019 by the president of the Trento province, Maurizio Fugatti, who declared that the animal was a risk to humans after it was seen close to inhabited areas. Its first escape took place on July 15, 2019 when M49 managed to climb over three electric fences and a four-meterhigh barrier at a wildlife enclosure in the northern Italian province of Trento before disappearing into the woods. On that occasion, the authorities granted permission to rangers to shoot the bear down if it came close to inhabited areas. “The fact that the bear managed to climb over an electric fence with seven wires at 7,000 volts demonstrates that this specimen is dangerous and a public safety problem,” Fugatti stated in 2019. The bear was captured on April 29 but remained in captivity only two months before escaping again. After its recapture, its enclosure was reinforced, and the bear was fitted with a radio collar to monitor its movements in case of yet another escape. It was all in vain, as Papillon, who has become a symbol of freedom and a champion of the force of nature over humans, managed to escape once again on July 27 and remove its collar, making its capture even more difficult. On Monday, though, his stint at freedom once again came to an end when he was caught in a so-called “tube trap a device which is commonly used to capture bears” according to local authorities. Ornella Dorigatti, Trento representative of the International Organization for Animal Protection, has pledged to go on a hunger strike for Papillon’s release. “I’ve just taken this decision,” she told the Guardian. “We must save these bears. We are their voice, and we will fight until M49 is free.”

Soldier Killed in Tunisia Terror Attack Three terrorists stabbed a pair of security officials in the Tunisian city of Sousse on Sunday, killing one and wounding the other. The Tunisian National Guard said in a statement that the terrorists first rammed the soldiers before stabbing them. Troops pursued the attackers, and all three were later killed in a firefight. “A security patrol comprising two agents of the National Guard was attacked with a knife by a terrorist in the center of the city of Sousse,” confirmed National Guard spokesman Hossam Eddin Jabal. “One died as a martyr, and the other was wounded and is hospitalized,” Jabal continued, adding that “this was a terrorist attack.” Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi visited the site and promised to “eradicate terrorists as soon as possible.” The attack comes as Tunisia is regaining its political stability, with Parliament ratifying Prime Minister-designate Hichem Mechichi’s government on Sunday. The new government is Tunisia’s third

in the past year. The war-torn country has been suffering from endless violence ever since the 2011 popular revolution that brought down longtime president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. In March, a pair of suicide attacks near the U.S. Embassy killed a policeman and wounded a dozen passersby.

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Israel and Kosovo Normalize Relations

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U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Friday that Israel and Kosovo will establish full diplomatic relations. As part of the deal, Israel will recognize the Muslim-majority nation for the first time, and both countries will inaugurate embassies in each other’s capitals. The agreement followed two days of intensive talks between the U.S., Kosovo, and Israel. The Trump administration granted Kosovo a slew of benefits in exchange for recognizing the Jewish State, including promising to invest in the eastern European country and fund a job creation program. Prior to the announcement,  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with Trump and Kosovo Prime Minister Abdullah Hoti.  “Kosovo will be the first Muslim-majority nation to open an embassy in Jerusalem,” exulted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “As I said in recent days, the circle of peace is expanding and more nations are expected to join.” Hoti welcomed Netanyahu’s announcement, saying that he was happy to launch a new relationship with Israel on behalf of his country. “Kosovo will keep its promise to place its mission in Jerusalem,” he said. “I welcome the announcement by the Israeli Prime Minister regarding the recognition of our country.” The move is to establish diplomatic ties with Kosovo represents a fundamental shift for Israel, which has long refused to recognize the country over fears that it would provide legitimacy for other nations to support a Palestinian state. In addition, Israel kept Kosovo at arm’s length distance in an effort to avoid antagonizing Russia, which opposes recognizing the war-torn country.  Over 100 countries have recognized Kosovo’s existence since it declared independence from Serbia followed a de-

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The Week In News cade-long civil war. Its independence has not been ratified by the United Nations due to the veto power Russia enjoys on the Security Council. The European Union has been trying to mediate between Serbia and Kosovo for years and has put normalization between both adversaries as a condition for joining the EU. In recent months, however, the Trump administration has launched an allout effort to hammer out an agreement between the two foes and bring the decades of conflict to a peaceful resolution. 

A Nightly Curfew

After an extensive debate, Israel’s government approved a plan to implement a nightly curfew on 40-coronavirus ridden cities. The curfew will take effect at 7 p.m. every evening and remains in place until 5 a.m. the following morning. Residents are

SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

forbidden from being more than 100 meters from their homes, and public transportation will end at 8 p.m. In addition, non-essential businesses will be prohibited from operating, and schools will be closed. In order to enforce the curfew, police officers will be reinforced by IDF combat soldiers. The decision to have a nightly curfew comes as an alternative to Professor Roni Gamzu’s plan to impose a full lockdown on 40 cities in the Holy Land. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had scuttled implementing the agreed-upon lockdown at the last minute after pressure from the haredi parties. With the majority of the 40 cities dominated by haredim, including Karmiel, Beitar Illit, and Bnei Brak, the Shas and UTJ factions demanded that Netanyahu not single out their constituents. In a public letter on Sunday, four haredi mayors accusing Netanyahu of “trampling” their cities and “turning us into disease vectors and enemies of the people.” Facing rising anger from haredi leaders, Netanyahu caved on Sunday and adopted nightly closures instead of the recommended full lockdown. In a statement, Netanyahu tried to pacify the haredi leaders, saying that the coronavirus “doesn’t differentiate between nations and populations.” He added the decision regarding which cities to add to the red list “isn’t done to ha-

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rass and isn’t random — these are scientific results according to the number and rate of infections.” While acknowledging the concerns of the haredi community, Netanyahu reiterated that the skyrocketing infection rate left him with no choice other than to impose new restrictions. “Right now, the outbreaks are mainly in ultra-Orthodox and Arab communities,” Netanyahu noted. “We must take steps that prevent infections at events and weddings and in schools,” he added. “We will do what’s needed in a responsible way. Don’t listen to populists.”

Record Temps Scorch Israel A massive heat wave scorched Israel on Friday, with record-setting temperatures and electricity use keeping large swaths of the country indoors. Israel had been hit by extreme temperatures throughout all of last week, with unusually hot weather reported even in normally cool areas such as the Golan Heights. Yet the unprecedented heat shattered several records on Friday, with several cities recording the hottest temperatures in Israel’s history. In Jerusalem, temperatures reached a sizzling 109°F, the highest recorded figure in the ancient city’s history. The number broke a previous new record set a day earlier of 106.1°F, a high never before recorded in Jerusalem.

The previous record was 104°F that was recorded by Ottoman Empire officials back in 1902. A heatwave is rare for Jerusalem, which commonly enjoys cooler temperatures than the rest of the country due to it being located on a mountain range 2,600 feet above sea level. A new record was also set in Eilat, with the southern vacation city reporting a scorching 120°F on Friday. New records were also set in Beit Dagan, a small farming village near Tel Aviv, and in the northern city of Safed, with both recording temperatures as high as 103°F. As temperatures continued to soar, Israel’s Electrical Corporation announced that the country used 14,310 megawatts on Monday, the highest daily electricity consumption in Israel’s history. The previous high had been set the day before with 14,089 megawatts used. According to Magen David Adom, paramedics provided medical treatment to 229 people who suffered from heatstroke. A total of 86 people fainted and 28 suffered from dehydration, including a 57-year-old

woman who was evacuated by helicopter after collapsing on a hike near Tiberias.

Bahrain Grants Israel Use of its Airspace

The Gulf state of Bahrain announced on Thursday that it has approved a request by the United Arab Emirates to allow Israel-bound flight to traverse its airspace. “All flights to and from the UAE can use Bahrain airspace,” confirmed Bahrain’s state news agency. Flights to and from Israel had been banned from using the Kingdom’s airspace as part of its historical refusal to recognize Israel’s existence. The UAE, though, had asked its neighbor to grant Israeli planes overfly rights following the UAE’s decision in early July to normalize relations with the Jewish State. According to reports, Bahrain’s decision came following extensive lobbying by Trump administration officials. A senior advisor to Trump’s special envoy Jared Kushner visited Bahrain’s capital of Manama last week and raised the issue directly in talks with Bahrain’s Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. Despite its small size, Bahrain controls much of the airspace belonging to neighboring Qatar. As a result, allowing Israeli-bound jets to cross Bahraini airspace would cut flight time by an estimated 20 minutes, resulting in cheaper flight prices. The approval came two days after Saudi Arabia announced it that would allow Israeli jets to overfly the Kingdom for the first time. Riyadh’s acquiescence came shortly after an El Al jet carrying an Israeli and U.S. delegation to the UAE became the first-ever Israeli flight to cross Saudi airspace. The charter flight brought senior officials from both Israel and the U.S. to Abu Dhabi to continue normalization talks. The Israeli team was led by National Security Advisor Meir Ben Shabbat while the U.S. delegation was led by Jared Kushner and National Security Council head Robert O’Brien. Arab states have long refused to grant Israeli planes use of their airspace, forcing planes taking off from Ben Gurion Airport to take a costly detour on the way to Asia. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Saudi Arabia’s approval “a huge breakthrough” that would boost Israel’s tourism industry by reducing plane tickets. “These are the fruits of peace,” Netanyahu declared.


SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News

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