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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News


Rabbi Yissachar Frand September 23 23--24, 2016 20 20--21 Elul 5776 Parshat Ki Tavo Friday Night D’var Torah Shabbat Morning Drasha Shabbat Afternoon Halacha Shiur 5:30 P.M. Motzei Shabbat Pre-Selichot Teshuva Drasha 9:00 P.M. Nagel Gymnasium For more information please contact Yeshivat Yavneh at (323) 931-5808



The Week In News



Community Happenings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5

JEWISH THOUGHT Dealing with Difficult People. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Bikkurim, the Baal Shem Tov and a Basket Full of Love . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Seven Minutes of Appreciation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16


All Eyes on the Candidates. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

ENTERTAINMENT Quotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36


Book Review. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Old Los Angeles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Travel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Travel Guide: Mumbai. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Ask Dr. T. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46

NEWS Israel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 National. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 That's Odd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44




SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Dear Readers,

I’ve just about given up keeping up with this election. Progressives now tell us that pointing out Mrs. Clinton’s health issues is taking advantage of her being a woman and different than a man. (No kidding.) Self-serving Edward Snowden is now a villain on the Left and tolerated by the Right. (This one sure came as a surprise.) Mr. Putin as well is now viewed negatively by the likes of the NY Times and positively by the Republican candidate for presidency of the United States. (Headache!) Removing Dictator Saddam Hussein is now used by the Republican candidate against the Democratic one. (Well, to be fair no one can say for sure if the world is better off with or without that madman. Islamist extremism was festering for many decades and regardless would probably explode leading to the rise of ISIS and other murderers-without-borders.) After being elected through populist appeal our current president is now denouncing populism as a worldwide epidemic. (Nauseating. In fact Trump hero-worship is a continuation of “following the/a man with all the answers” attitude introduced back in 2008…) The miraculous part of all this is that while the world continues spiraling into chaos, Israel continues to establish herself as an island of stability, leadership, growth, and, yes, superior moral conduct. Interesting, yet miraculous times indeed. Wishing you a wonderful Shabbos,


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 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Local Moms Attend JRWP Global Leadership Conference Rebecca Klempner Four Jewish women from the L.A. area participated in the Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project (JWRP) Leadership Conference held September 18th - 20th in College Park, Maryland. Over 300 participants from nine countries gathered to hone their leadership skills and promote the unity of Jewish women everywhere. This year’s L.A. contingent included Chana Heller, Dr. Susan Berman, Lisa Kodimer, and Karina Gordon. The first annual conference, in 2013, had 65 participants from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, making this year’s turnout an impressive achievement. During this week’s event, JWRP honored Lihi Lapid and Rachelle Fraenkel with the Pamela Claman Leadership Award. Lapid is an acclaimed Israeli feminist author, while Fraenkel is both a well-respected teacher of Torah and the mother of Naftali Fraenkel, slain by terrorists in 2014. Rachelle Fraenkel transformed her son’s death into rallying point for hope and unity among Jews. “Rachelle and Lihi both speak on our Momentum trips, and are true examples of Jewish women from diverse worlds who know what it means to love one another based on the values they share,” said Lori Palatnik, founding director of JWRP. Other speakers included Mindy Scheier, founder of Runway of Dreams and attendee of the first JWRP Fashion trip this summer; Ariel Halevi, founder and co-owner of Vayomar, an Israel-based communications consulting firm; Charlie Harary, an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and leader of the JWRP Momentum men’s trips; Gidi Grinstein, founder and president of the Reut Institute, a non-profit strategy group focusing on Israel and Jewish issues; Janine Kurnoff, founder and principle of the Presentation Company, a communications consulting firm; and Dr. Zeev Ben Shachar, director of Israel education at Hebrew University. JWRP City Leader here in L.A., Chana Heller, said, “It was transformative being with 250 women from 12 countries who are literally changing the face of the Jewish world. Aish LA, the Los Angeles partner of JWRP, is bringing 94 moms on the JWRP trip this winter to bring the total participants from our city to 340 moms in six years.” Over Facebook, Clevelander Ruchi Koval shared this thought mid-way through the conference: “So many incredible human beings in one room. So much magic. So much power. So much inviting other people to get brave, get real, share your kishkes, get out of God’s way, hold hands, support a sister, and make a difference on this planet. I am proud to be asso-

The Los Angeles delegation L-R: Karina Gordon, Dr. Susan Berman, Lisa Kodimer and City Leader Chana Heller

ciated with this organization. I am proud to stand…shoulder to shoulder with these amazing humans, and make this world a better place.” The Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project was founded in 2008 in order to empower women to change the world

using Jewish values. Its major project is “Momentum,” a nine-day, highly subsidized trip to Israel. Since 2014, the JWRP has partnered with Israel’s Ministry of Diaspora Affairs. To date, over 8000 women from 150 partner organizations in 26 countries worldwide have traveled on a

Momentum trip. Momentum participants commit to getting involved in community events, Israel engagement programs, Jewish education, and leadership development when they get home. After JWRP spouses expressed their interest, the program expanded to include Momentum Israel missions for JWRP husbands in 2010.



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TheHappenings Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Celebrating the Heroes of Hatzolah in Los Angeles Yehudis Litvak

The Heroes of Hatzolah dinner, held by Hatzolah Los Angeles in conjunction with United Hatzolah Israel, inspired its attendees and raised the funds necessary to expand the life-saving work of these organizations. Well over 700 people from all areas

of Greater Los Angeles filled the Beverly Hilton on September 14th to support the work of Hatzolah Los Angeles and United Hatzolah Israel. “It was an incredible night,” says Tali Merewitz, event planner and Hatzolah dispatcher for over ten years. Many dignitaries were in attendance. “The

government entities we work hand in hand with showed their support,” says Tali. The chairman of the Hatzolah board is Shmuel Baruch Manne. The emcee of the evening was the Emmy award winner David Weiss. The attendees were welcomed by the new Consul General of Israel in Los

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Angeles, Sam Grundwerg. The apex of the evening, says Tali, was an emotional reunion. A recording of a Hatzolah call was played. In it, a father called about a choking emergency with his son. In response to the dispatcher’s question, “Is he breathing?” the father said, “No, he is not breathing.” Hatzolah volunteers were immediately dispatched to his home. That Hatzolah call took place six years ago. Now, at the dinner, the father himself came up to the podium and expressed his appreciation to the Hatzolah volunteers who had saved his son’s life. The father, Gabi Azoulay of Valley Village, ex-

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TheHappenings Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

John Solano Photography

Honorees Chelsea and Matthew Schames, Siona and Mansoor Alyeshmerni

services. The EMTs are available 24/7, ready to drop everything to respond to an emergency. The dispatchers also need to be available during their volunteer hours. “It’s amazing and intense,” says Tali about her experience as

a dispatcher. Other community members support Hatzolah in other ways. At the dinner, Hatzolah Los Angeles honored Chelsea and Matthew Schames for their efforts in spreading the word about Hatzolah and their commitment to help Hatzolah grow. United Hatzolah Israel honored Siona and Mansoor “Elie” Alyeshmerni, who have been proud supporters of the Israeli Hat-

zolah for many years. With the heartfelt support of the community, the event raised much needed funds, which will be split between Hatzolah Los Angeles and United Hatzolah Israel. Hatzolah Los Angeles will use the funds to recruit and train new members, expanding its services in the Greater Los Angeles area.

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Rabbi Gabi Azoulay and his son Yitzchok thanking Hatzolah members Seth Gerston, Yoey Schochet and Bruce Bloom

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plained that his then eighteen month old son Yitzchak had chocked on a sunflower seed on Shabbos afternoon, right after Purim. The seed had blocked his airway. Mr. Azoulay had tried to dislodge the sunflower seed, but it wouldn’t budge, and his son had turned blue and stopped breathing. A woman passing by the house heard screaming and called 911. Mr. Azoulay ran out of the house and used the woman’s phone to call Hatzolah. In under a minute, a Hatzolah EMT rushed into the house and worked to clear Yitzchak’s airways. When the 911 paramedics arrived a minute later, “they said clearly that the first response from Hatzolah was critical to saving Yitzchak’s life,” said Mr. Azoulay. Then Yitzchak himself, now eight years old, came on stage and thanked Hatzolah for saving his life. The three Hatzolah volunteers who had responded to that call then came up and embraced the father and the son. The audience, and the volunteers themselves, were moved to tears. Many dedicated individuals come together to provide Hatzolah’s emergency

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TheHappenings Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Two Local Jewish Organizations Receive Awards in the White House for Community Resilience Yehudis Litvak Two Los Angeles organizations – Hatzolah Los Angeles and the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles -- received awards from the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for their outstanding work in the field of community resilience. Representatives of these organizations, Michoel Bloom of Hatzolah Los Angeles and Ivan Wolkind and Jason Peri-

ard of the Jewish Federation, traveled to Washington, D.C., where they received the awards at a ceremony in the White House, on September 13th. Hatzolah Los Angeles was recognized for its work in emergency medical response while the Jewish Federation was recognized for its Community Security Initiative, whose mission is to strengthen the security of the Los Angeles Jewish community.

FEMA is increasingly seeking to work together with faith-based communities. Mr. Bloom, Executive Director of Hatzolah Los Angeles, explains that after several big disasters the government authorities found that over 65% of the population seeks help from their faith-based communities. Under the Obama administration, the Department of Homeland Security launched a program called Building Resilience with Diverse

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L-R: Jason Periard, Director Federation CSI program, Ivan Wolkind, Federation COO, Michoel Bloom, Executive Director Hatzolah LA

Communities (BRDC), which is described on their web site as, “engagement process developed by the Center for Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships at the US Department of Homeland Security / FEMA (DHS Center) to help local communities implement the concept of ‘whole community.’” Through BRDC, the DHS Center is reaching out to local faith and community leaders, assesses their current capabilities, and provides training and assistance in disaster preparedness. At the award ceremony at the White House, FEMA recognized six community organizations from four different locations: Los Angeles, Miami, Albuquerque, NM, Lakewood, NJ, and New Orleans. The Los Angeles and Lakewood representatives were religious Jews. “It was a huge kiddush Hashem,” says Mr. Bloom. “It showed that the Jewish community is very involved [in disaster preparedness], including the Orthodox community. [The government] recognized our work.” Jay Sanderson, President and CEO of The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, said in a press release, “[W]e are honored and humbled to receive recognition for our work today. We would like to congratulate all other award recipients and honorees, and look forward to continuing our work together in strengthening and protecting the Jewish community and national community at large.” In Washington, D.C., the awardees visited the FEMA headquarters and met with its representatives. At a question and answer session, community and government representatives discussed future plans for working together and the issues involved in disaster preparedness. The main takeaways, says Mr. Bloom, is that it is very important to work together to prepare for disasters. It takes up to a week for the Federal organizations to respond to a disaster. In the beginning, the responsibility falls on the local leaders. Different local organizations specialize in different things. For example, Hatzolah Los Angeles can set up a mobile hospital in case of an earthquake. The Jewish Federation specializes in security. Other organizations provide mass feeding. It is by pulling their forces together that the community organizations can respond to a disaster effectively. The award will be of much help to Hatzolah Los Angeles as it aims to expand its operation. Mr. Bloom is hoping that this award will pave the wave for government grants and other crucial assistance.

The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



Torah Musings The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Dealing with Difficult People PART II: BIG IS SMALL Sarah Pachter

One evening, my husband and I planned to attend a black tie event. I was eight months pregnant and had only one formal gown that fit. It was an exquisite piece that I kept in a garment bag, hidden in the back of the closet. This way, no little hands could accidently find it – or destroy it. After purchasing the dress, I did not even try it on again for fear of ruining it. The evening arrived. The babysitter

came early while I fed the kids spaghetti and meatballs. I planned to put on the dress just before whisking out the door. This way there would be no opportunity for the kids’ marinara fingers to come into contact with the dress. My husband arrived, and I hugged and kissed my daughter goodbye. I asked my son, “Can I have a hug?” Being a five-year-old, and going

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through the “I’m-too-embarrassed-to-hugmom-stage,” he adamantly said, “No!” I reluctantly went upstairs, changed, and was about to exit the front door. Suddenly, my son said, “Wait, mommy! I want a hug!” Since his hugs were few and far between, I gladly drew him in for a squishy bear hug that was pure heaven! When we finally pulled apart, I looked down only to find a rather gigantic chocolate stain right smack in the middle of the dress. Unbeknownst to me, he had been gobbling chocolate and obviously felt my dress was as good a napkin as any. My eight-month protruding belly certainly did not make it look any less noticeable. The dress was destroyed. I just knew it was the type of stain that would return from the cleaners with that dreaded note reading, “Sorry! We tried and tried but could not get the stain out.” There I stood, pregnant and uncomfortable, late for the event, with not a dress for the occasion. I could feel the anger rise in my throat, but I was not about to make my son feel bad for giving me a hug. It took much internal strength (and leaving the room) to maintain composure. I found a different dress to wear somewhere in my closet, and we were fashionably late. I even found a great dry cleaner that I still use to this day. (Needless to say, they got the stain out!) Let me tell you, in the moment, that squishy-hug stain felt very, very big. Yet, zooming out, I was able to put that moment into perspective. Months later, I was able to laugh, lecture, and write about it. We all experience variations of these seemingly big moments of anger, sadness, or disgust. Yet these seemingly big moments of discomfort are actually small when we apply a dose of perspective. Big is small. Learning to bear the discomfort of the moment is the tool we can use to shrink those moments down to size. Difficult people are difficult. They

enrage, sadden, and shock us with their words and behavior. But isn’t it possible to get through the moment and view it as precisely that – just one small moment? Ask yourself, “Will I still be angry about this in one year? Five years? Ten years? Will I laugh about this soon? Can I learn something from this and turn it into a teaching experience?” The concept of shrinking big down to small is a lifetime process with ups and downs, and nothing happens overnight. G-d Himself did not create the world overnight. Would it not have been much more impressive if He created the world in one hour, one minute, or even one second? His six day unfolding of the universe teaches us the awesome lesson of process. G-d took His time. Since G-d values the road towards greatness, not just the outcome or results, we should also develop an appreciation of our own process, and the processes of those around us. When I play the Spot It card game with my children, every card shares a snowflake, four-leaf clover, or red balloon. We search for the symbol that each card has in common, just as we search for common ground between individuals. Perhaps process is yet another place to find that common ground. Every one of us is not only made in the image of G-d, but we are works in progress, too. A wise woman once told me that if we are consistent about our small choices day after day, year after year, then eventually there will be an upward slope in a strained relationship. Additionally, if we work on ourselves to make what feels big small, while allowing ourselves time to progress, we will surely be successful in mending ties with difficult people. The trick to Spot It and difficult relationships is to spot the common ground by realizing that small is big, big is small… and process, process, process!

Jewish Thought The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Bikkurim, the Baal Shem Tov and a Basket Full of Love Sholom Kesselman

The mitzvah of bikkurim captures and expresses the entirety and essence of the Torah. According to Ramban it is the end and culmination of Moshe’s repetition of the Torah and his teaching of the mitzvos. From here until the end of the Torah, we read about the covenant that Moshe entered us into with G-d and Moshe’s preparation for his passing. As such, this mitzvah’s significance looms large, and its ideas are reflective of what all of Torah is about. Bikkurim expressed gratitude. The farmer had to collect the first of his fruits and ceremonially bring them up to the Beis Hamikdash as a token of thanks to G-d for the success of that year’s harvest. Gratitude is a central theme in Judaism. Our daily prayers are full of it, and the many blessings we recite daily are designed to show our thanks and appreciation for all the good G-d does for us. In fact, just ask a Jew how he’s doing, and the answer will likely be “fine – thank G-d.” But talk is cheap. It’s one thing to be thankful verbally, but to back it up with action is an entirely different story. Bikkurim is the one mitzvah which demands of us to put our money where our mouth is and thank G-d in a tangible way. The first fruits which the farmer had been eagerly awaiting for months and which he worked so hard to grow and cultivate, he joyfully and lovingly gave away to G-d amid great pomp and circumstance. This is the ultimate expression of gratitude, and the most meaningful. This act of gratitude was supposed to permeate a Jew’s entire being. In addition to the bikkurim themselves, the farmer also had to offer the mikrah bikkurim – a verbal declaration which he was required to chant in a loud voice in the Beis Hamikdash. The person was thus entirely immersed in the process. His mind, no doubt, was filled with thoughts of thanks and gratitude; his thoughts would then pour forth in song and praise of G-d in the form of the verbal declaration, and, most importantly, he expressed these sentiments with real, concrete action. But this process wasn’t just about gratitude. It was also about acknowledging that “to G-d is the world and all that fills it.” The giving of the bikkurim was a demonstration that in reality all of existence belongs to G-d and that whatever we may have achieved or amassed is entirely G-d’s

doing. We may only have given away the first fruits, but they were representative of the entire harvest. Through them the farmer, totally overcome with a sense of submission, gave “all he had” to G-d, humbly acknowledging that it’s really all His. But how is this possible? How can a person attain such deep levels of gratitude and submission, so as to totally and completely give his entire self to G-d? The answer lies in the deeper symbolism of bikkurim. The Zohar comments that the Jewish people are called (G-d’s) bikkurim. Rashi too, on the very first word of the Torah – b’reishis – comments, “…This verse calls for a midrashic interpretation: [God created the world] for the sake of the Torah, which is called (Prov. 8:22): “the beginning of His way,” and for the sake of Israel, who are called (Jer. 2:3) “the first of His grain.” Just as bikkurim were brought to the Beis Hamikdash and placed before G-d, so too every Jew, in his essence, is always in a state of “placed before G-d” in the Beis Hamikdash. Every Jew has a G-dly soul which is at all times bound up and totally united with G-d. This is the essential quality of a Jew and one which transcends even his level of observance of Torah and mitzvos. A Jew’s essential bond with G-d is deeper and greater than even the Torah and as such is unbreakable and unwavering. Just as parents have unconditional love for their children so too G-d’s love for us is unconditional. This is expressed in the concept of teshuvah. No matter how low a Jew may have fallen and no matter how much he may have sinned he can always repent and do teshuvah. This is because teshuvah reveals the essential bond and unconditional love that G-d has for us and there nothing is more important than the Jew himself. He is the object of G-d’s love and G-d wants him for the sake of him, not because of any good deed or mitzvah he may or may not do. Bikkurim are the very first fruits and likewise the Jewish people are the very first of G-d’s “produce.” We preceded the entire creation and even the Torah itself, and the essence of our being is oneness with G-d. This is how bikkurim is possible. Because a Jew himself is already bikkurim;

observant and learned; if not, he was no different than a gentile. The Baal Shem Tov however taught that first and foremost we are G-d’s children. We have a G-dly soul, we are forever bound to Him and His connection and love to us is unconditional and unbreakable. He taught us to do Torah and mitzvos not in order to earn G-d’s love but because we are G-d’s love. This was a central point in his philosophy and is the message of the bikkurim, as well. All of us, no matter our level, are one with G-d and have an unbreakable bond with Him. He loves us all unconditionally and we the same of Him. It is this deep bond and love that should inspire and motivate us to do His will and to submit ourselves entirely, in our thought speech and action, to Him and His Torah.

because in his essence he is one with G-d, this naturally spills out. When he comes before G-d with his actual bikkurim, he can wholeheartedly submit his entire self to G-d and give all to Him because this is what a Jew is. A Jew is everything to G-d, and so He can be everything to us. It is the fact that He has made us His bikkurim, the fact that He has given His entire self to us, which gives us the ability to reciprocate and show that same level of commitment and gratitude back towards Him. The 18th of Elul marks the birthday of the Baal Shem Tov – the founder of Chassidism. One of his most revolutionary teachings was precisely this. Before him, Judaism was entirely predicated on observance of Torah and mitzvos. One could only be considered a “Jew” only if he was



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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home




VOICEMAILS …A chashuvah Mekubal in Eretz Yisroel told us about the segulah of the Ben Ish Chai for Zerah Shel Kayama, to support Chatzos Talmidei Chachamim. We’ve taken a partnership for the zechus of our daughter and she was B”H helped after nine years... M.A.C. Montreal

‫לרפואת אלטר יעקב‬ ‫בן דבורה לאה‬ ‫בתושח״י‬

The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

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Living with In theNews Times The Week

By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz Publisher of the Yated Ne’eman

Minchah on erev Rosh Hashanah had ended and the crowd in the Gerrer bais medrash was waiting for the Maariv that would usher in the new year. The Gerrer Rebbe, the Bais Yisroel, whispered something to the gabbai, Reb Shea Noach. The gabbai walked to the bimah and made an announcement: “There are still seven minutes until shkiah.” Sometimes, we are so focused on the future that we lose sight of the present. The rebbe was reminding his followers that there were still seven precious minutes with which to be mesakein the fading year. What can be accomplished in seven minutes? The Chofetz Chaim would often say that over the yomim noraim, we appeal to Hashem as a “Melech chofetz bachayim,” a King who desires life. As we ask Hashem to grant us the gift that He Himself appreciates, it stands to reason that to be granted the gift, we also have to be chofetz bachayim. If someone has a valuable watch that he wishes to entrust to a friend for safe-keeping, which friend would he ask, one who has no understanding of valuable items or one who possesses an appreciation for fine watches? Of course, he would turn to the one who knows how to treat an expensive timepiece. The Chofetz Chaim would conclude that the King who desires life is more likely to bestow life upon one who values life; cherishes and realizes the gift being given every moment. Rav Avigdor Miller would make the same point with the example of a storeowner forced to lay off one worker. He has a choice of who to keep. One employee is hard-working and effective, but always in a bad mood and giving off negative vibes. The other is less efficient, but always in a good mood, making customers happy and lifting the spirits of those around him. Rabbi Miller would say that a sharp proprietor would keep the second worker, perceiving the benefit of having a positive person around. So too, Hakadosh Boruch Hu wants happy workers, those who are pleased to be doing what they do. In the final “seven minutes” of the

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Seven Minutes of Appreciation year, we can focus on 5776 and consider how things have progressed, how much we have received, and how fortunate we have been during the past year, and express our appreciation for the blessings we have been granted. We should take a moment to contemplate how many times we panicked or worried over the past year and how many moments of fear we faced. Then, from the perspective of the final moments of the year, think about how many of those problems cleared up and how many of those situations were resolved. Think of all the brachos we received since the past Rosh Hashanah, the children brought into the world, as well as our new accomplishments, opportunities, friends, vistas, and welcomed maturity in Torah. As we stand at the cusp of a new year and begin praying for life, goodness, and blessings, we first must appreciate what we have been granted and offer thanks and gratitude. This week’s parshah tells us how, as it discusses the mitzvah of bikkurim. The Jew brings his first fruits to the Mikdash and offers thanks in a loud voice. As the posuk states, “Ve’anisa ve’omarta” (Devorim 26:5). The mitzvah of bikkurim, which began with our entrance to Eretz Yisroel, forces us to contemplate our blessings. Following the winter, we see an orchard of bare branches. We care for the trees nonetheless. We engage in months of hard work and davening for the climate necessary for a good crop, as well as the proper measurements of wind and rain, and no plagues or pestilence. We continually check the status of our orchard. Then, one day, after all the waiting, toil and prayer, we find a ripening fruit and tie a string to it to indicate that this fruit will accompany us to Yerushalayim, so that we can thank Hashem for the bounty we are confident He will bless us with. We express appreciation for the miracle of growth and our faith in the future guarantee that we will be blessed with a bountiful year.

The lesson of bikkurim is not only a perfect message for this time of the year, but a perfect metaphor for the blessings in our life. Barren fruit trees, looking like they will never grow again, surrounded by dirt and snow, offer much rationale for despair, until suddenly, one day, a tiny new fruit restores hope for the future. Hakaras hatov, being appreciative, is a vital middah. The word lehakir, at the root of hakoras, has a double meaning. It means to appreciate and it also means to recognize. For in order to appreciate the good, you first have to recognize its existence. Hakaras hatov necessitates hisbonenus, focus and concentration, for we must feel the gratitude. Hakaras hatov does not mean offering lip-service and empty thanks, which is demeaning to the recipient, but really appreciating what we received and the one who did us the favor. The opening pesukim of the parshah refer to Eretz Yisrael’s qualities and its flow of milk and honey. We don’t always see the blessings. Sometimes all we see are hostile neighbors, stabbings, bombings, and too many people who know nothing about their heritage and religion. We examine our own lives and find things wanting. We can concentrate on the good or we can focus on those areas of life where the good is not always apparent. We see the barren branches and fret and worry that they will never give fruit again. We plant seeds and they disappear, causing us to wonder if they will ever grow into anything. We need to concentrate on the good. We need to believe that the good that is not yet apparent will soon be, when the barren branches will show a sign of life. We don’t despair. We maintain our faith that everything that happens is for the best; it’s just that some good is evident, while some is not. And still we are makir tov. We see a world overcome by fear, with bombs exploding at every corner of the globe, civil wars ripping nations apart, diplomacy failing, and refugees spreading hate and anxiety. We see bombs go off in

New York and New Jersey, and miraculously nobody is killed. We see politicians react by begging people not to think that Islamic terror is involved, though obviously it is. We see stabbings in Middle America along with chants about Allah. We see our brethren in Eretz Yisroel so removed from Torah that they fight to work on Shabbos. We see generations growing up in the Holy Land without any Jewish knowledge whatsoever. We pity them and wish that there was a way to reach them. They assume that all we do is burn garbage pails and throw stones. We daven at the Kosel and put out of our minds that secular groups are waging a strong battle to bring their movement to the holiest place accessible in Jewish life. We recognize that the reality is that the seeds are underground, germinating, and concentrate on recognizing the good everywhere. I thank Hashem that I was able to be in Eretz Yisrael for a few days last week and for Shabbos, basking in holiness, positivity, and growth. I was surrounded by a sense of awe and joy over the too-short duration of my visit, confident that what I viewed and experienced is a harbinger of what’s to come. I am grateful for the opportunity to have visited, and even more grateful for what I saw over the course of those few days. I stood in the field and saw how seeds have become luscious fruits. I saw barren branches and I saw trees laden with fruit. I was given a grand tour of Yeshivas Mir in Yerushalayim, and as much as I knew and heard about the Mir, there were too many amazing sites to count. The Mir represents a chain stretching back many generations. We know that the yeshiva was carried on the wings of angels, beyond the reach of the Nazis, serving as an island of Torah for so many. We know how the more recent roshei yeshiva led the Mir to new heights, how people like Rav Chaim Shmulevitz, Rav Nochum Partzovitz and others emerged as the leaders of so many of the generation’s rabbeim and rabbonim, setting many on paths of Torah greatness and understanding More recently, we watched in awe as a physically handicapped, but not debilitated, Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel built and built and built, constructing the largest yeshiva on earth with love and superhuman energy. Then, suddenly, he was taken from us. Now, almost five years later, we experience the atmosphere in the many halls of the yeshiva, the sound of Torah in its many batei medrash, the enthusiasm on the faces of those who learn there, the sheer hasmadah that engulfs you as you walk by people of every age on bench after bench, and the joy and serenity on the faces of yungeleit who likely have no idea how they will buy chicken for Shabbos. You think you know

Living with In theNews Times The Week

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

what the Mir is, but you don’t until you feel it, see it, hear it, and are overwhelmed by the thousands of lomdei Torah between its many walls and on the streets everywhere around it going to shiurim. You walk through the Mir and you can feel the prophecies of Yeshayahu Hanovi that we read in the seven haftaros of nechamah. You walk through its halls and see how seeds planted over the decades are flourishing. The image of Rav Osher Arieli, in his short jacket, with his humble posture and bright eyes, and his worn Gemara under his arm, as he speaks in learning with talmidim, typifies that miracle. Quietly, majestically, Torah is exploding. The Chevron Yeshiva has its roots back in Lithuania. The Alter of Slabodka opened a branch of the yeshiva in Eretz Yisroel, in the ancient city of Chevron, where the clean-shaven, sharply dressed Litvaks added to the mosaic of the Holy Land, blessed with yiras Shamayim and exceptional depth in learning. Their dedication to Torah was seriously tested. The horrific massacre that took place in that city and at the yeshiva would have broken others, but the yeshiva relocated to Yerushalayim and forged on. Not many foreigners study there, and their campus is located off the beaten track, so many of us are not familiar with what goes on there. We know about the glory years, when virtually every future rosh yeshiva in the country learned there, but are unaware of the great edifice of Torah that it is today. I had never seen the Chevron bais medrash until last week. What an amazing site! Fourteen hundred bochurim fill the cavernous room, exploding with Torah. Many seeds were planted to blossom into this burgeoning bais medrash that draws some of the best bochurim from all over Eretz Yisroel who wish to toil in Torah. In the middle sits the rosh yeshiva, Rav Dovid Cohen, speaking in learning with bochurim. It was humbling to stand there, being shown around by the rosh yeshiva, Rav Yosef Chevroni, but it was also very thrilling to see how Hashgachah orchestrated for this magnificent orchard to grow. Rav Chevroni showed me the yeshiva dormitory, which is being expanded to accommodate the growth, and a new dining room, which is being constructed to feed the ever-increasing number of bochurim. Walking around the bais medrash and expanding campus, observing the many fruits nobody ever thought possible, I was heartened, confident about our future and grateful. I traveled to Rechovot to see the completed Halichot Chaim Kollel and community center that its leader, Rav Zvi Schvartz, has been dreaming about for the past 18 years. Few gave him any chance

of succeeding in his dream to construct a building to house his 70-member kollel and center for kiruv in the cosmopolitan Israeli city. It was fascinating and invigorating to see what one dreamer has been able to accomplish, and to think about the Torah that will be studied and spread in the building that he labored to build for the past two decades, overcoming opposition, bureaucratic red tape and financial challenges. Sometimes, we fail to see the larger picture. We get locked into the moment, seeing only that which is immediately in front of us. Now, at year’s end, we have to take a step back and look beyond our immediate field of vision. A chossid endured the painful loss of a child and was unable to cope with the anguish. He traveled to the Kotzker Rebbe for comfort and solace. As the man was a talmid chachom, the rebbe began the conversation by speaking to the grieving man in learning. The rebbe cited a Rambam and discussed difficulties he had with it. The visitor was able to explain the seeming contradictions and show the rebbe how the words of the Rambam were laden with meaning. Seeing that the man was able to answer his questions on the Rambam, the rebbe brought up difficulties he encountered with a Tosafos. Again, the fellow had a nice p’shat. “Yes, but what about the Rashba,” asked the rebbe. “It’s not shver,” the man answered. “I’ll show you why.” The rebbe looked at him and said, “So the Rambam has an answer, Tosafos has a p’shat, and there is no difficulty in understanding the Rashba… “Don’t you think that there is an explanation, as well, for the decisions of the Ribbono Shel Olam?” The chossid was comforted. It often takes time, but we are given glimpses to bolster our emunah. There is always an answer. In Chevron Yeshiva, I noticed the name “Zev Wolfson” over the main entrance. Mr. Wolfson was emphatic about not having his name on buildings, so I knew that there was a story here. I asked Rav Chevroni about it. “Let me tell you a story,” he said. “When my father built this campus, there was a crisis. Overnight, the price of cement and other building materials rose sharply, putting the task of constructing the buildings beyond reach. There was so much money already sunk into the buildings, and he was unable to raise more. He was unable to go on. All his contacts had been tapped and nobody was interested in contributing more. “Everything was in jeopardy. The yeshiva could have closed. “He reached out to Mr. Wolfson, who

responded that he would pay to put up the buildings. He saved the yeshiva. He literally saved the yeshiva. “As the chanukas habayis approached, my father invited Mr. Wolfson to participate in the celebration. After all, without him, there would be no buildings. My father really wanted him there to publicly express his appreciation. Besides, Mr. Wolfson deserved to see the fruits of his dedication. But he refused to come. My father asked him a few times, and each time the answer was the same: ‘No. No. No.’ “Finally, it was the day before the chanukas habayis. My father was very emotional about meriting to complete the buildings and move into them. He felt that Mr. Wolfson should be there to share the same feelings of satisfaction. He called Mr. Wolfson’s office to speak to him. ‘He’s not here,’ the secretary said. “‘Where is he?’ my father asked. “‘I don’t know,’ said the secretary. ‘He left and said he’d be back in two days. He said that he can take no calls.’ “That was that. My father gave up. He called after the two days to report to Zev on how the chanukas habayis went. He said, ‘Zev, you really should have been there. You would have had such nachas.’

“The philanthropist responded, ‘Who says I wasn’t there? I was there. You convinced me that I had to be there. I came. I stood in the back. I watched. I enjoyed every minute. And then I flew home.’” Zev Wolfson appreciated what he had and why Hashem gave it to him. He sought neither power nor glory, but rather worked to take inventory and build. He lived his life to its fullest by always challenging people to do more and to do better to increase Torah and G-dliness in the world. He always challenged himself to do better and seek out people and institutions to help. That’s what we need to do in the final “seven minutes” and seven days. We need to step back, and without ego or other negios consider what we have been blessed with over the past. Think about what we have been given. Think about what we can do with what we were given. Think about what we have accomplished. Smile and say thanks to Hashem for the year that is ending. Hashem, bless us during the coming year, for we are chafeitzei chaim, appreciative, believing and confident that we will use the blessings for their intended purpose.

Sundays: October 30 - January 22 see online calendar for holiday schedule

Cost: $230 (includes trophy, full uniform set, raffles, and all equipment)

Junior Varsity Division

Varsity Division

1:30 - 2:40 PM

2:45 - 4:10 PM

2nd - 4th Grade

5th - 8th Grade

Registration can be done online. Times and dates are subject to change


The Week In News

Book Review

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Two New Releases for Kids by Angelenos! Toba’s Passage by Libby Herz, illustrated by Dena Ackerman (Hachai 2016)


by Marc Lumer, Chaim Burston, and DovBer Naiditch (Apples and Honey Press 2016) Reviewed by Rebecca Klempner b ar a m



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Former Angeleno, illustrator Dena Ackerman (née Heller), and current Angeleno, author/illustrator Marc Lumer, each have new books out for young readers this year. Ackerman has illustrated several picture books – including How Red is My Rimon, Hashem’s Candy Store, and the rerelease of Shuki’s Upside-Down Dream – and has now tackled a new genre, the middle-grade chapter book. Toba’s Passage is the newest title in Hachai’s “Fun-to-Read” series. Like other “Fun-to-Read” books, it highlights a particular period in Jewish history, in this case, Russia and New York in 1905. Toba and her brother, Velvel, travel by ship to join their papa in the United States, accompanied by their aunt, Fronya. On the voyage, they must cope with overcrowded conditions, Aunt Fronya’s disabling seasickness, and the loss of Toba’s treasured prayer book. Once in America, the children reunite with their father and must adjust to life in a new country. Toba eventually solves the mystery of her lost siddur and makes a new friend. The book concludes with historical notes that provide young readers with background on the Jewish immigration to the U.S. in the early 20th century. While Toba encounters many of the hardships common to immigrants of her time – poor conditions in steerage on the way to this country, health inspections at Ellis Island, the pressure to violate Shabbos in order to keep a job – as an adult reader, I found the characters overcame these obstacles, and more personal ones, too easily. Similarly, I was frustrated with the tidy ending, which relied heavily on hashgachah pratis. However, my daughters (who are both within the recommended reading ages for Grades 2-4) enjoyed Toba’s Passage exceedingly. They liked the mystery elements, the plucky protagonist, and both singled out the happy ending that I found too simplistic as a favorite detail. Clearly, the author and editing staff at Hachai tailor-made this book for its audience. Ackerman’s black and white illustrations – on the cover and every few pages – help readers picture life in New York 110 years

ago. An image of Toba going to bed on the tenement’s fire escape and another of the bustling street (teeming with wagons, pushcarts, and even early auto mobiles) charmed me in particular. I’d recommend Toba’s Passage for children 6-8 as a read-aloud, and for independent readers 8-10. Before reviewing Babel, I must confess – this will in no way be an objective review. This project – written jointly by Lumer, Burston, and Naiditch – has been “under development” for years, and since I know Mr. Lumer professionally, I got my first glimpse of the eye-catching world he was dreaming up quite a while back. As the title suggests, Babel depicts the story of the migdal bavel from Parshas Noach. The authors had to walk a very delicate line between commitment to the text as it appears in the Torah and child-friendly silliness, and they succeeded. They dipped only slightly into the commentaries on the parshah but retained the most important details in the original text. Humor sparkles throughout both the words and the images. When “Tower Fever” takes over Babel, its inhabitants eat tower sandwiches and tower cakes and play board games with tower-shaped pieces. And the image of the angels sweeping away knowledge of loshon hakodesh as they sleep is magical. Babel would make a perfect introduction to the story of the Tower of Babel for both Jewish and non-Jewish children. The authors created an entirely English text – no Hebrew words tossed in – and as mentioned above, they did not introduce midrashim or concepts which would surprise the non-Jewish reader (even commonly known ones like the assertion that the one, original language was Hebrew or that Nimrod and Avraham Avinu were present during the tower’s construction). The lesson is clear, explained in an age-appropriate way, and not heavy-handed. This makes the book not only perfect for home-use, but an excellent choice for classrooms, libraries, Hebrew schools, and Sunday schools. I’d recommend it for ages 3-6.

The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

4 Hours Before Rosh Hashanah 5777 Begins

Tefilas Gedolei Hador At The Kosel Hamaaravi For a Good and Sweet New Year For Vaad Harabbanim’s Donors








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All donations are tax deductible. Please make checks payable to Vaad Harabbanim In accordance with U.S. tax law requirements regarding deductibility of contributions, VAAD HARABBANIM L'INYANEI TZEDUKA INC. shall have full dominion, control and discretion over this gift. All contributions subject to final board approval.



OldWeek Los Angeles The In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Emperor Vespasian Appears in a Los Angeles Court and Carries the Day for the RCC Rabbi Pinchas Gruman

It was the ‘70s, in L.A. This was when, against the advice of my concerned friends, I organized the kashrus committee for L.A. under the auspices of RCC (Rabbinic Conference of California). There was a slaughterhouse in L.A. at that time that was called “Perfecto*.” This slaughterhouse engaged Rabbi Rubins* to be the supervising rabbi. Rabbi Rubins was a scion of a distinguished rabbinic family. His grandfather, Hillel Rubins*, had been the av beth din of a major town in Hungary. Hillel Rubins also was the author of a well-regarded shailos u’teshuvos work (containing questions and answers about halachah). Rabbi Rubins had a rabbinic ordination and was a talmid chacham, but had no previous experience in the supervision

of slaughterhouses. Besides knowing the basic halachos of yoreh de’ah concerning the ritual slaughter of animals, someone who supervises a slaughterhouse has to be proficient in the area of bedikas p’nim, which means the practical ability to check the efficiency of the shochtim – to stick the hand into the esophagus of the animal and check the conditions of the lungs. The only way you can do that is to be able to do it yourself. The harav hamachshir – rabbinic supervisor – also has to know how to sharpen the slaughter knife and ascertain that the shochtim do so properly, as well as master several other skills. I suggested to Rabbi Rubins to find an expert from the East Coast to come out and either ascertain his fitness to serve as a rabbinic supervisor or offer some other sug-

gestions. I also told him that, short of this, as the chairman of the kashrus committee, I would have to disallow the usage of the meat produced by this slaughterhouse by the kosher butchers under the supervision of the RCC. Rabbi Rubins was livid. “What right do you have to question my ability and my rabbinic authority? I will sue you for unlawful restraint of trade. You will rue the day that you dared to insult me as you did.” I understood his feelings, but I felt that I had to do what I had to do. In his suit against the RCC, in general, and myself, personally, he was joined by a defunct wholesale meat company by the name of Fresher Fleisch*. The proprietor of that company complained that I put him out of the kosher business. He, either entirely or partially, financed Rabbi Rubins’s suit. Rabbi Rubins claimed that he was the victim of unlawful restraint of trade. Each suit pressed for the sum of two million dollars. Several attorneys we interviewed suggested that they would fight Rubins’s contention that this is an unlawful restraint of trade. They would prove to the court that our actions were indeed lawful. I disagreed with that line of reasoning, and I was able to find an attorney that was willing to fight the suit on the basis that the government has no business to be involved in kashrus problems. This line of reasoning was what I felt should be taken. The name of the attorney I hired was Raphael Chodosh. He was an erudite gentleman with extensive knowledge and interest in ancient history. He told me he had a personal interest in this case.

Personal? “Well, I have a letter from Vespasian that deals with this very issue. Instead of charging you my regular $500/ hour price, I will charge you the actual cost of running my office. I will find out what it is.” It was $75 an hour. Chodosh marshaled a host of relevant cases in American jurisprudence to support his contention that the government has no business to involve itself in kashrus. But he indeed cited an ancient letter from Vespasian as the linchpin of the case. There were two Jewish butchers that lived in Rome at that time. Both were Roman citizens. One of them complained to the senate that the other butcher was selling non-kosher meat under a kosher label, at a cheaper price. This ruined his, the plaintiff’s, business. He therefore asked the senate to protect his right to livelihood. Vespasian, who was not yet the emperor but only the head of the Roman senate, replied in a letter to the plaintiff, “You think that the senate has the time or interest to involve itself in the squabbles between kosher butchers? Go to your damn rabbis – that’s what they are for.” (The Judean War, Volume II by Lion Feuchtwanger.) Please note that the language used by Vespasian in this letter was his usual manner of communication, even after he became emperor. The letter caused an explosion when we appeared in court. Chodosh notified members of the press beforehand. It was the sensation of the day. The judge threw out the case; The RCC won. Rabbi Rubins appealed the ruling to the Superior Court of California, who likewise sided with Chodosh. An interesting proviso: the Superior Court of California argued that the courts simply lacked the ability to handle kashrus problems. There are many levels of kashrus in Jewish law. There is such a thing as kosher. There is such a thing as glatt kosher. There is such a thing as chassidish shechita, and so on. No secular government had the authority to sort them out. P.S. Rabbi Rubins was personally acquainted with a Supreme Court justice at that time, the distinguished William Rehnquist. Rehnquist simply sent back the papers requesting his court review the case, unopened. Chodosh charged me $15 for the stamps he used to mail his own material. * name changed by The Jewish Home

The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home


"‫"אבינו מלכינו נא אל תשיבנו ריקם מלפניך‬

We all say it on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kipur Many of our neighbors, friends & relatives say it every day!

There are hundreds of families, widows, orphans and sick people right here in our community, people you would never guess, who are literally going hungry. These Aniyei Ircho have no money for food, clothing or rent. They are people you might know very well -- or at least think you know very well ...

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The Week In News


SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home


yom limud & tefilla

This Tuesday, 24 Elul / September 27, 7am – 2pm Photos from the 2015 International Yom Limud & Tefilla

Yerushalayim, Eretz Yisroel

Radin, Belarus Melbourne, Australia

This coming Tuesday, 24 Elul, Sept. 27th, will mark the yartzheit of the Chofetz Chaim. On this special day, join with thousands of daily Daf HaYomi B’Halacha participants, by learning the daily Mishnah Berurah and Mussar limud. Hundreds of Yeshivos, Kollelim, Bais Yaakovs, Seminaries and companies around the world have committed to join and participate in the “International Yom Limud and Tefillah” on 24 Elul, Sept. 27th. This will coincide with a special unity mission to the Chofetz Chaim’s Kever in Radin led by a delegation of prominent Chassidish, Litvish and Sefardic Gedolim and Rabbanim.

Join with Yidden from across the globe who will beseech Hakadosh Baruch Hu to spare us from any hardships, and bentch Klal Yisrael with a

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‫ ק"ל‬,‫ פרק כ‬:‫תהלים‬ ‫תפילת אחינו כל בית ישראל‬ ‫ מתחילת סימן ק"ס עד‬:‫משנה ברורה‬ '‫אמצע סעיף ב' 'ואם היו‬ ‫ אות ט' 'אם‬:‫ספר שמירת הלשון‬ ‫הוא מכיר' עד אות י"ב אדע‬ '‫דמצות עשה‬ The tefillos and limud during the zman will coincide with the delegation’s presence in Radin.

Yeshivos, Kollelim, Bais Yaakovs and Seminaries are encouraged to participate. Please call 732.987.3948 ext. 112 for further information.

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



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SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home


OCTOBER 29, 2015 | The Jewish Home SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Feature The Week In News

All Eyes on the Candidates How Debates Swing Elections BY NACHUM SOROKA


onald Trump seemed mad this summer when he complained that the proposed debate schedule was arranged so that the general public would not be interested in watching him browbeat his opponent. Just after the Democratic Convention he took to Twitter to complain, “As usual, Hillary & the Dems are trying to rig the debates so 2 are up against major NFL games. Same as last time w/ Bernie. Unacceptable!” In all likelihood, the Republican nominee was simply creating an opening for himself to back out of participating in the longstanding presidential election tradition just in case it would make sense to sit it out when the time came. Trump appears to have come to terms with sharing the spotlight with this week’s Monday Night Foot-

ball, perhaps after he himself scored a key team member in the Fox News’ fallen CEO, Roger Ailes, who can teach the billionaire a thing or two about debating; but the upcoming

ing two against President Obama in 2008. Hillary Clinton is a seasoned politician who knows her talking points and more importantly, the times

Viewers thought the tanned and handsome Kennedy soundly beat the older and fatigued Nixon; radio listeners considered the results a tie. debates – three in all – could pose ample reason for the candidate to worry. For the first time in his life, Trump will participate in a one-onone debate on the national stage with an opponent who has completed no less than five of them, includ-

when she should not be talking. Trump’s only experience in debating so far has been in the Republican primary debates this year, when he was able to get by with promises of “winning so much” and talking down to “Low Energy Jeb.” Trump has con-

tinuously avoided discussing much of his policies in depth throughout his campaign. In the second Republican debate, Trump’s explanation about how he would go about building a wall was to say, “We have a lot of really bad dudes in this country from outside… They go. If I get elected, first day they’re gone. Gangs all over the place. Chicago, Baltimore, no matter where you look.” And by debating amongst a group of presidential hopefuls, Trump was able to retreat into the shadows of the stage when a topic was beyond his scope and come back with a quick zinger when the time was right. If Trump were to decide this Monday morning that it would serve him better not to show up against Clinton, the independent Commission on Presidential Debate, which has been in charge of the past seven series of presidential debates, may



The Jewish Home | OCTOBER 29, 2015 SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

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Looks make the man, especially during JFK and Nixon’s debate

be forced to cancel its plans. Or it may allow Gary Johnson, the Libertarian former governor of New Mexico, who is currently polling at 8% by some accounts, allowance onto the stage, something which he has been vying for for quite some time. Johnson is well below the 15% threshold set by the Debate Commission, but in the absence of an opponent for Hillary, he may be asked to go up there. Such an occurrence, when a front-runner refuses to debate, has its place in history. In 1980, the year that Ronald Reagan ended up soundly defeating the incumbent Jimmy Carter by ten percentage points, President Carter refused to participate in the two first scheduled debates, citing the fact that John Anderson would be included in them as well. Anderson was the candidate that refused to die, and after losing the Republican nomination that summer, he ran as a member of the National Unity Party. His refusal to back out of the race irked President Carter. Carter’s decision to take a stand against Anderson worked against him and painted him as an obstinate. Moreover, it gave Reagan the platform to drive back the president’s assertions that he was a “dangerous radical” without having the president there to rebut. Carter was polling well ahead of Reagan before the debate began. After the debate between Anderson and Reagan, the tide began to turn and Carter was forced to come to an agreement with Reagan.


Reagan wanted to remind Americans of Carter’s track record. “Are you better off than you were four years ago?”

Debating foreign and economic policy is not something that Donald Trump should consider one of his strong points, but one thing Trump knows a thing or two about is how to perform for the camera. The Apprentice star knows when exactly to smile for the viewers and how to dominate the stage. In fact, the ones who really control the debates, the TV executives, know this and are very appreciative at having a master showman dominate the program-

and the staid politician, the misogynist and the feminist champion, is sure to attract even the least politically interested viewers. Moreover, people are waiting to see how the poor-mouthed Trump will denigrate a Clinton and if/when his poor taste will backfire. The first debate to be televised, which took place in 1960 between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy, was watched by 36 percent of

“I will not make age an issue of this campaign. I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and inexperience.”

ming. Trump is such a draw that he has been allowed to call into Sunday morning television shows, something other candidates are rarely permitted to do. Ironically, it may very well be that Monday Night Football should be the one who is concerned with going up against a Trump-Hillary showdown. Monday Night Football receives fewer than 20 million viewers on a good week. This is in contrast with the 67 million viewers who tuned into the first debate between Mitt Romney and President Obama. This election’s matchup, between the blowhard billionaire

the U.S. population. That would be the equivalent of almost 120 million viewers today, more than even the most popular Super Bowl. A lot of debates took place since then, and if history is any teacher, we may be able to learn a thing or two from presidential hopefuls and their previous sparrings. Looking back, Trump’s lack of indepth knowledge and debate skills may work in his favor. Consider the fact that most people can barely remember the key points made at presidential debates. Instead, they remember the little things, the highlights that are repeated over and over

by the news stations the day after the event. In 2012, it was President Obama laughing off Mitt Romney’s reference to his retirement account having Chinese investments in blind trusts, “You know, I — I don’t look at my pension. It’s not as big as yours so it doesn’t take as long.” The matter of blind trusts went well over the head of the average viewer; the fact that billionaire Romney got schooled by the hardworking Barack Obama did not. It didn’t either help Romney that he looked feeble in the face of his opponent’s criticism. Experts point out that ever since the presidential debates began being televised, what one says may not even matter at all. How a candidate appears on television, handsome or haggard, poised or sweaty, is what shapes the public’s perception of who was the winner or loser. Indeed, surveys of people the day after the 1960 Nixon-Kennedy debate displayed a discrepancy between those who saw the debate on television versus those who listened to it on the radio: Viewers thought the tanned and handsome Kennedy soundly beat the older and fatigued Nixon; radio listeners considered the results a tie. In the second debate between incumbent Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, Ford posited that Eastern Europe was not controlled by the Soviets. It was obvious that he meant that the Communists could not control the spirit of the Polish people, but the moderator accused him of saying that the Poland was not under Soviet rule of law, asking


OCTOBER 29, 2015 | The Jewish Home SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Dan Quayle was insulted when his opponent said, “I served with Jack Kennedy. I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy.”

him, “Did I hear that right?” Ford doubled down on his statement and came across looking like a stumbling fool. The Yale graduate was not able to recover from that gaffe for the rest of the campaign and he ultimately lost to Carter. Ronald Reagan can credit his

victory over Jimmy Carter to his Hollywood training to look cool and in control while in front of a camera. Reagan is perhaps most famous for his response in the 1984 debates to the question of whether he was too old to be president by announcing, “I will not make age an issue

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Even Mondale laughed at Reagan’s witty comeback regarding his age

of this campaign. I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and inexperience,” which even elicited a laugh from Walter Mondale, his opponent. And he was able to disarm Jimmy Carter in 1980 by repeating the refrain “There you go again” to many of the attacks Carter lobbed at him. Viewers did not seem to care that there was nothing notable about the line; Reagan’s poise in brushing off his opponent helped him appear more able to lead over the purse-lipped incumbent. It also was not helpful to Carter that he credited his young daughter, Amy, with giving him the idea that the world’s most pressing issue was nuclear warfare. Impressions matter more than reason to debate viewers. In 1988, Massachusetts governor Michael Dukakis, an opponent of the death penalty, was asked the loaded question of what he would do if his wife, Kitty, were grotesquely murdered. Dukakis stuck to his guns and answered, “I think you know that I’ve opposed the death penalty during all of my life. I don’t see any evidence that it’s a deterrent and I think there are better and more effective ways to deal with violent crime.” While that may have been the correct answer, and there really should be no difference to one who opposes capital punishment whether the victim is his wife or a stranger, Dukakis came across as uncaring and unreasonable, sealing his fate as the loser in the election.

Dan Quayle’s reputation suffered from the effects of having to ask his opponent, Lloyd Benstein, in 1988 to apologize for saying he was “no Jack Kennedy” to the laughter from the audience. And Al Gore came across as brazen for sighing too much at George W. Bush in 2000. During debates, the public looks to latch onto the simple lines, the smart talking points. “Ask not what you can do for your country,” “I have a dream.” The six-foot-two Trump, who can preen for the camera better than the best of them, may very well be able to get away with positions like, “That’s what’s going to happen with our enemies and the people we compete against. We’re going to win with Trump. We’re going to win. We don’t win anymore. Our country doesn’t win anymore. We’re going to win with Trump. And people back down with Trump. And that’s what I like and that’s what the country is going to like.” But then again, all Hillary Clinton has to do is to allow Trump to become caught in a display of ignorance and attempt to sputter out of it. Or she could allow him to go off his rails while she stands by, looking at ease and complacent.


t’s once again fall in America, and for a change, it’s not only football season. This year’s major matchup is taking place off the gridiron and out of the cold, behind two podiums. Let’s hope both teams actually show up.



Dirshu The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Worldwide Yom Limud and Tefillah on Yahrtzeit of the Chofetz Chaim Distinguished Rabbanim to Daven on Behalf of Klal Yisrael at His Kever Chaim Gold

The yahrtzeit of the Chofetz Chaim is a special eis ratzon, a remarkably opportune time to invoke rachamei shamayim. This year, on Tuesday, 24 Elul/September 27, Klal Yisroel will utilize this eis ratzon by engaging in an International Yom Limud and Tefillah. Jews from all over the world will recite specific chapters of Tehillim and learn segments from the two seminal sefarim written by the Chofetz Chaim, the Mishnah Berurah and the Sefer Chofetz Chaim. The Yom Limud and Tefillah, being held under the auspices of Dirshu and its kiruv arm, Acheinu, is designed to reach out with a message of achdus to all Jews from across the spectrum and at all levels of observance, promoting Torah learning and tefillah. There is so much strife in the world, so much polarization and heated rhetoric. Combining sur meirah with aseh tov the Yom Limud and Tefillah has been designated as a day when all Jews are urged to make a special effort to avoid discord, lashon hara as well as any form of gossip and learn the sefarim of the Chofetz Chaim. The Optimum Hakaras Hatov: Perpetuating the Legacy Indeed, yidden the world over owe a profound sense of hakaras hatov to the Chofetz Chaim for bestowing two gifts, the Mishnah Berurah and the Sefer Chofetz Chaim, upon us. Last year, Hagaon HaRav Shlomo Kanievsky, shlita, Rosh Yeshivas Kiryas Melech and a son of HaGaon HaRav Chaim Kanievsky, shlita, addressed this issue in the aftermath of the visit to Radin, by a large group of gedolei yisrael. From Radin the delegation went to the Volozhiner yeshiva. In front of the Volozhiner yeshiva, Rav Kanievsky said, “The feeling that we must have as we approach the holy kever of Rav Chaim Volozhiner is an overwhelming one of hakaras hatov. The greatest way to express that hakaras hatov is to continue his legacy by perpetuating the derech of the yeshivos begun with Volozhin, educating our bachurim in that derech and supporting the yeshivos hakedoshos.” We can extrapolate from Rav Kanievsky’s message that the optimum expression of our hakaras hatov to the Chofetz Chaim for gifting Klal Yisrael with his sefarim – such integral parts of our lives – would be to follow in his ways, learn his Mishnah Berurah and become familiar with the laws of lashon hara and permitted speech and be constantly cognizant of what comes out of our mouths. This is truly the essence of the Yom Lim-

ud and Tefillah, a day to bring the Chofetz Chaim’s Torah, tefillah, and message of ahavas yisrael and achdus to us all. Visits to Radin, Mir, and Kovno The climax of the Yom Limud and Tefillah will be a visit by a group of gedolei rabbanim to Radin, where they will daven at the kever of the Chofetz Chaim and at the yeshiva of Radin on behalf of Klal Yisrael. Rabbanim slated to attend include HaGaon HaRav Chizkiyahu Yosef Mishkovsky, shlita, a close talmid of the rosh yeshiva, HaGaon HaRav Aharon Leib Shteinman, shlita, and menahel ruchani of Yeshiva Orchos Torah, HaGaon HaRav Shmuel Eliezer Stern, shlita, Rav of Western Bnei Brak and a close talmid of HaGaon HaRav Shmuel Wosner, zt”l, HaGaon HaRav Avraham Salim, shlita, Rosh Yeshivas Me’or HaTorah, HaGaon HaRav Aryeh Zilberstein, shlita, Rav of the Gerer Community in Bnei Brak, HaGaon HaRav Simcha Hakohen Kook, shlita, Rav of Rechovot, and HaGaon HaRav Shimon Galei, shlita, Rav of the Osem Complex in Bnei Brak. The distinguished delegation will also journey to the town of Mir where they will daven at the kevarim of the great Mirrer Mashgiach, HaGaon HaRav Yeruchem Levovitz, zt”l, and the Rav of Mir, HaGaon HaRav Tzvi Hirsch Kamai, zt”l. Tefillos will also be recited at the kever achim at the Ninth Fort in Kovno, where HaGaon HaRav Elchonon Wasserman, hy”d, was murdered al kiddush Hashem. Without a doubt the climax of the journey will be the tefillos and words of hisorerus at the kever of the Chofetz Chaim to be delivered by Rav Aryeh Zilberstein, Rav Avraham Salim, and the ne’ilah shmuess by Rav Mishkovsky. Generating a Tremendous Atmosphere of Goodwill and Achdus in Klal Yisrael This year’s Yom Limud and Tefillah is the second such event. Last year’s event attracted some 500,000 Jews worldwide. This year, organizers hope to reach well past that goal, tapping into the innate feeling of every Jewish neshamah, that extraordinary times such as the ones in which we live, with threats from within and without call, for a concentrated effort in tefillah and achdus to invoke rachamei shamayim in the zechus of the heiligeh Chofetz Chaim who was so moser nefesh to promote these ideals among Klal Yisroel. Hundreds of yeshivos, chadarim, schools, shuls and even individual businesses from across America, Eretz Yisrael,

Europe, South America, South Africa and Australia, have signed up to participate in the yom tefillah on Tuesday 24 Elul/September 27. They will recite two chapters of Tehillim and learn the daily limud of Daf HaYomi B’Halacha, as well as select halachos from the sefer Chofetz Chaim. The anticipated Yom Limud and Tefillah has already begun generating a tremendous atmosphere of goodwill and achdus amongst Klal Yisrael. A peek into

Yeshiva Aharon Yaakov Ohr Eliyahu particpating in the previous Yom Limud and Tefilla

just a few of the institutions in America that have signed up to participate and take advantage of the auspicious time to daven with so many likeminded yidden attests to that achdus. The partial list includes Shaagas Aryeh – Lakewood, NJ, Yeshiva Ohr Eliyahu – Los Angeles, CA, Yeshiva Derech HaTorah – Cleveland, OH, Yeshiva Torat Emes – Houston, TX, Torah Day School of Phoenix, Torah Day School of Atlanta, Talmudical Academy - Baltimore, Yeshiva High School of Arizona, Torah Day School of Dallas, Yeshiva Ohr Yisrael – Boston, Torah Academy of Boston, Providence Hebrew Day School, New England Academy of Torah, and the Providence Community Kollel. Some of the participating shuls are, Mevakshei Hashem – Brooklyn, NY, Ahavas Yisrael – Cleveland, OH, Beis Medrash Kol Aryeh – Lakewood, NJ, Satmar Beis Medrash – Lakewood, NJ, Zichron Schneur – Lakewood, NJ, and Beis Medrash of Westgate of Lakewood. These are in addition to the hundreds of similar institutions across the length and breadth of Eretz Yisroel and many locales in Europe, the Former Soviet Union, Mexico, South America, Canada, South Africa, and Australia. “The Nazis are Gone, the Communists are Gone, but the Chofetz Chaim and His Mishnah Berurah are Eternal!” Another closing of circles, as it were, will be the Daf HaYomi B’Halacha shiur in the Chofetz Chaim’s sefer Mishnah Berurah delivered by Rav Dovid Hofstedter at the Radin Yeshiva established by the Chofetz Chaim. A shiur in the sefarim

written by the Chofetz Chaim, in the yeshiva founded by the Chofetz Chaim some 75 years after Radin’s Jews were killed by the Nazi’s, embodies the ideal of “Netzach Yisrael lo yishaker.” Indeed, at a previous journey to the Chofetz Chaim’s kever, Rav Hofstedter said, “Hitler destroyed so much of European Jewry. He thought he could wipe them out, but he didn’t. The Communists tried to destroy the Jewish religion. They caused a tremendous churban, but they still did not succeed. The Nazis are gone, the Communists are gone, but the Chofetz Chaim and his Mishnah Berurah are eternal!” Join Klal Yisrael This Tuesday, 24 Elul/September 27! We are living in truly perilous times. Even in the United States there is a certain sense of instability, as we are in the throes of a tumultuous and nasty presidential election. There is civil unrest as well as the threat of terrorism at home and abroad that can have severe ramifications. At this uncertain juncture we are in dire need of tremendous rachamei shamayim. Now is the time to join together with untold numbers of Jews all over the world to daven for Klal Yisrael. The yahrtzeit of the Chofetz Chaim is a remarkably auspicious time to invoke Divine mercy. Now is the time to join with Klal Yisrael in the Yom Limud and Tefillah this Tuesday, 24 Elul/September 27 and tap into this unique eis ratzon!

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SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Credit Card Companies are Increasingly Regulating the Industry – Get your Cards before they’re gone! Recently, several prominent credit cards have seen a makeover in terms of regulation and application restrictions which are leaving longtime customers high and dry. Both Chase and Citibank have introduced new guidelines regarding eligibility for new cards, specifically irking travel gurus who utilize their cards and points to maximize on rewards and travel. Chase is one of the most accessible and well known Banks in the U.S. - it should come as no surprise that with great cards such as Chase Sapphire Preferred, it has become fairly common for people to apply for several of their rewards cards simultaneously for ultimate value. To the dismay of Chase loyalists everywhere, the 5/24 rule has taken over. What this means is that “Chase will not issue you a

new Chase credit card if you have opened 5 or more credit cards over the past 24 months.” To add insult

to injury, this even includes any card in which the applicant is considered an authorized user. Theoretically, a person with outstanding credit and years of customer loyalty would be duly denied without reprieve. Ouch. On August 28th Citibank updated their rules regarding rewards, effectively limiting what customers will be able to receive in terms of “sign up bonuses” for the future. They now only allow their customers to receive a sign up bonus every 24 months, per “type” of card. What does this mean? That you won’t be able to earn a Citi Thank You credit card signup bonus if you opened or closed ANY Citi Thank You cards within the past 24 months. In addition, this rule also applies to Citi’s other cobranded cards, such as Citi AAdvantage cards and Citi Hilton cards. To clarify – Let’s look at the evolution of the coveted Citi Prestige card “Bonus Rules” Old rules- Bonus Thank You Points not available if you have had a Citi Prestige card opened or closed in the past 24 months Now the following new terms are listed: New Rules- Bonus Thank You points are not available if you have had Thank You Preferred, Thank You Premier or Citi Prestige card opened or closed in the past 24 months. What this means for the mile churning and savvy 21st century credit card user is that keeping up with the CC companies

rules and regulations is a constantly changing task, which can make a big difference on your wallet. In order to stay on top of all updates and amendments, tune in to our follow up blog where we’ll give you

tips on which cards are still available and worth signing up for as well as potential loopholes around these new rules. REMEMBER, don’t let your points/miles sit idle, as they might be devalued or altered

when it comes to value and reward! Get PEYD is the leading credit card reward and travel agency. For more information, visit




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To celebrate this milestone and as a thank you to our customers we are GIVING AWAY our signature travel mugs. Stop by our 5 Towns office and pick one up today.




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SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Travel Guide: Mumbai Aaron Feigenbaum Mumbai, India’s largest and most populous city, is a destination that’s at once incredibly challenging and incredibly rewarding. It’s by far India’s leading center for commerce and produces Bollywood entertainment (the Indian equivalent of Hollywood). An estimated 500 Indians every day immigrate to this massive city in hopes of better opportunities. Unfortunately, many of those people hit the brick wall of socioeconomic inequality, which is especially pronounced in a developing city like Mumbai. Glitzy skyscrapers sit side by side with Asia’s largest slum population. With its noise, traffic, pollution, humidity, and poverty, Mumbai is nothing less than an all-out assault on the senses starting from your first crazed taxi ride from the airport to exploring the city’s dingy alleys and densely packed thoroughfares. Those who manage to stick it out in these rough conditions will discover why Mumbai is one of the world’s most visited cities, and why its locals wouldn’t trade it for any other place on Earth. Mumbai has a magnificent collection of colonial buildings left over from the British period, as well as some of India’s most famous art galleries and museums. You can tour such iconic sites as the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus and the world-famous Taj Mahal Hotel, catch a game of cricket, take a harbor cruise, explore the city’s diverse religious sites (including its famous shuls), or simply wander off and open yourself up to the countless surprises this dynamic city has to offer. Mumbai is certainly not for everyone, but many of those who make the trip end up realizing that amidst the chaos the city has a distinctive charm. From its cultural and religious diversity to its historic landmarks to its shopping centers and hectic way of life, Mumbai, for all its good and bad, is a truly unique city. History Thousands of years ago, the area now known as Mumbai consisted of seven main islands. Eventually these islands were linked together through a series of land reclamations and integrated into Emperor Ashoka’s kingdom in the third century BCE. The Buddhist emperor Ashoka is considered one of India’s greatest rulers – his empire stretched from the Hindu Kush Mountains of Afghanistan to modern Bangladesh. After his death, the islands were fought over for many centuries by various Hindu dynasties until the Kingdom of Gujarat annexed them in 1343 and brought them under Muslim rule for the first time. In 1543, the Portuguese, who already controlled several trading centers on India’s western coast, annexed the islands the Gujarati ruler Bahadur Shah. The Portuguese established Christianity for the first time in Mumbai. However, today only one of their churches remains. Portuguese rule in Mumbai came to an end in 1661 when the islands were given to British King Charles II as dowry for his marriage to Portuguese Princess Catherine of Braganza. Charles II in turn leased the islands to the East India Company when they colonized the city in 1668. They decided to officially rename it Bombay, a moniker by which some still refer to the city to this day. The East India Company transferred their headquarters from Surat to Bombay, thus starting Mumbai’s rise to India’s leading economic hub. Mumbai’s population soon increased dramatically. In the mid 1800s, English governor William Hornby completed his massive Horn-

by Vellard engineering project, which finally merged all seven islands together in a single land mass. The Industrial Revolution hit India around this time and the country’s first railway connection was built between Bombay and Thane in 1853. The East India Company lost control of the city after the revolt of 1857, but economic development continued unabated. Universities, steam power, electricity, and factories were all introduced to Bombay in a flurry of Westernization in the late 1800s. The opening of the Suez Canal in Egypt in 1869 meant that shipping lanes between Bombay and the rest of the world were now open. Thus, Bombay quickly became one of India’s major port cities. However, this Westernization proved to be a double-edged sword for the British as university-educated revolutionaries called for Indian independence. Tensions escalated between the British and Mumbai residents as civil freedoms were curtailed and riots became commonplace. After independence, the city dramatically expanded again to include outlying suburbs. Mumbai became the capital of Maharashtra State in 1950. Skyscrapers, paved roads, the Bombay Stock Exchange and other rapid economic growth brought more and more people into the city and cemented Mumbai’s position as India’s primary metropolis. In the 21st century, Mumbai has been increasingly plagued by terrorism, including the horrific attack on the Chabad house in 2008. However, despite this and other problems like poverty and pollution, Mumbai continues to serve as the gateway to India for millions of

visitors every year and continues to grow economically (especially in the IT sector). Mumbai today is one of the most fascinating and rapidly growing cities in the developing world. Attractions Gateway of India: Built to honor the 1911 visit of King George V (but not actually completed until 1924), this massive basalt arch is one of Mumbai’s most recognizable landmarks. In fact, some call it the “Taj Mahal of Mumbai” not only for its popularity with tourists and street vendors but also for its elegant design and historical significance. After its construction, it became the ceremonial entry point for British governing officials. Post-independence, it welcomes tourists and dignitaries alike. Despite being targeted in a 2003 terrorist attack, the Gateway remains Mumbai’s most popular attraction. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus: One of the world’s busiest railway stations, the CST was built in 1888 by the British in a beautiful blend of Victorian Gothic and traditional Indian

Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg Hy'd

Ramoji Film City

Knesset Eliyahoo

Pune India

Khandala Mumbai

Victoria and Albert Museum Mumbai

Sanjay Gandhi National Park

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus

Prince of Wales Museum

architectural styles. At rush hour, this gigantic building is packed with commuters. Take a few minutes to admire the statue of Queen Victoria and the building’s design, which is especially impressive when lit up at night. If you’re feeling adventurous, step onto one of the trains; locals say this is a must-do for visitors to Mumbai. Prince of Wales Museum: One of India’s greatest museums, this building houses thousands of priceless artifacts from India, Nepal, Tibet, and other Asian countries in a stately colonial-era building. Fusing European, Indian, and Islamic architectural styles, the Prince of Wales Museum was built in the early 1900s by George Wittet, who also designed the Gateway to India. The exterior is adorned with lavish botanical gardens. Inside you’ll find over 2000 miniature paintings from India’s major art schools, decorative art made of jade and ivory, ancient artifacts dating back to India’s mysterious Indus Valley civilization 2000 years ago, and decorative pieces from India’s greatest empires such as the Mughal and Rajastani. You’ll also find an impressive collection of Indian weapons and armor, as well as European oil paintings and a section highlighting Mumbai’s crucial role as an international trading center. In all, this is one of the best celebrations of Indian culture around and should not be missed. Victoria and Albert Museum: If you want to know about India’s ancient past, be sure to visit this museum, where you can see some of the nation’s best artifacts on display. From antique manuscripts to photos to clothing and decorative metalware, this is the perfect place to learn about the many changes Mumbai and the rest of the country have undergone from ancient royal dynasties to British rule to independence. Mani Bhavan Gandhi Museum: This mansion in Mumbai was a key staging ground for some of Gandhi’s protest activities. Owned by his friend Revashankar Javeri, the mansion was used by Gandhi from 1917 to 1934 to found his Satyagraha (non-violent resistance) and Swadeshi (boycotting British goods) movements, among others. Indeed, one could say that this is where Gandhi became Gandhi. Today, the house is a memorial where Indians and people around the world come to pay tribute to one of the most influential thinkers of the 20th century. An auditorium on the first floor plays films about Gandhi and recordings of his speeches. The second floor preserves Gandhi’s living room and working space just as it was when he was using it. Another room has photos and posters relating to Gandhi’s political movement. Outside is a marker on the spot where he was arrested in 1932. If you’re interested in studying Gandhian thought, the museum houses a library with thousands of books, articles, and recordings to peruse. Sanjay Gandhi National Park: Located in Mumbai’s northern suburbs, this massive park is one of the city’s prime attractions and one of the most visited parks in the world. The park is home to an incredibly diverse set of flora and fauna in a lush green setting. There’s a huge collection of exotic wild animals such as Rhesus monkeys, macaques, leopards, and pythons. There are also over 5000 species of insects including almost 200 species of butterflies and the Atlas moth, the world’s largest moth. The park also has a Lion and Tiger Safari where visitors can ride in special buses equipped with safety features to view these majestic animals. Located deep inside the park are the Kanheri Caves, which are thousands of years old and are reportedly the oldest caves in India. These elaborately carved caves are believed to be ancient Buddhist shrines. They give an insight into the culture and daily life in India during the time

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SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Gateway of India

of Buddhist settlement. Besides the animals and caves, visitors to the park can also enjoy its pristine scenery including waterfalls, hills and rivers. Adventure sports like rappelling and trapeze are also popular activities here. Film City: Located near Sanjay Gandhi Park, this is the very heart of Bollywood production. From mansions to lakes to mountains to mini-cities, almost 1000 different sets can be constructed here simultaneously. Financed by the Maharashtra State government, Film City has grown since its inception in 1911 to become a gigantic, state-of-the-art movie production facility. Visitors can tour the studio’s incredibly elaborate set pieces and get an insight into the Bollywood phenomenon, something that is little known in Western pop culture. Nehru Planetarium: Named after India’s first prime minister, this museum is one of five in India dedicated to promoting astronomy education. This domed building includes an art gallery, library, and cultural center. Visitors can learn about the solar system and outer space exploration. The planetarium also provides viewing parties for special occasions like eclipses and meteor showers. The excellent planetarium shows take visitors on a virtual trip through the most awe-inspiring sights in the universe. Right next door is the Science Complex whose most popular attraction is a 14-minute exploration of India’s culture and history, especially the great contributions to science and math that it has made. There is also a supersonic jet and railway engine on display. Day trips: Located not far from Mumbai, one of India’s most scenic areas is the Khandala Hill Station. With cascading waterfalls, lakes, verdant valleys, ancient Buddhist cave shrines, and all-around pleasant weather, Khandala is great for hiking, boating, exploring, or anything in between. Buses can take you up to Tiger’s Leap point where you’ll get a breathtaking view of the mist-shrouded valley below. For a relaxing spot to picnic, head to Tungarli Lake. For those who want a bit more excitement, the Karla Hills and Duke’s Nose Peak are great for rappelling and rock climbing. The city of Pune, located just under 100 miles from Mumbai, is the second-largest city in Maharashtra State and is commonly referred to as the state’s center of culture. Pune has witnessed some of India’s most important historical events such as the Anglo-Maratha Wars between the British East India Company and the Maratha Empire. It offers access to some of the country’s major hill stations and has been called the “Oxford of the East” for its highclass educational institutions. One of the best museums in the city is the Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum, which houses an extraordinary col-

lection of Indian decorative artifacts such musical instruments and pottery from the 19th and 18th centuries from a variety of Indian artisans. A royal palace called Vishrambaug Wada, belonging to the last Peshwa (prime minister) of the Maratha Empire, is available for touring. It’s a unique place that shows firsthand how life at the top during one of India’s most famous periods. Pune’s natural beauty is complimented by its excellent outdoor activities such as hang gliding, horseback riding, and visiting the Bhimashankar wildlife sanctuary. Another recommended activity is taking the three-hour Pure Heritage Walk through the city to see some of its most fascinating historical and cultural sites. Lastly, one of the best day trips from Mumbai is to the picturesque seaside resort of Alibag. Named after a wealthy Israeli merchant who owned several fruit orchards in the area, Alibag boasts glittering beaches, a diverse array of aquatic wildlife, and more. Unlike the polluted Chowpatty Beach in Mumbai, Alibag’s Nagaon Beach is very clean and is known for its water sports and the beautiful coconut and palm trees that surround it. Sitting right off the coast is the Janjira Fort, an extremely impressive defensive structure built in the 17th century that has managed to survive enemy attacks and corrosion ever since then. Inside the fort you can see some of the few remaining cannons as well as elaborate elephant statues. Daven and Eat Mumbai has several historic Sephardic shuls for communal use. One of these is the Gate of Mercy Synagogue, the oldest in the city. Located near the Masjid Bunder train station, the beautiful Gate of Mercy Synagogue is located on Samuel Street, which is named after the shul’s founder Samuel Ezekiel. Entry is free, but donations are recommended. Mumbai’s other famous historic shul is Knesset Eliyahoo, which is located very close to the Gateway of India monument. This shul was founded by Jacob Elias Sassoon, grandson of the Baghdad-born leader of the Mumbai Jewish community David Sassoon. The shul includes a mikvah. There are also the Magen Hasidim and Tiphereth Israel shuls, both of which are located in the same area. Last but certainly not least is the Chabad House, the site of the terrible attack in 2008 which took the lives of, among others, Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife Rebbetzin Rivka Holtzberg hy”d. The center, also known as the Nariman House, reopened two years ago and plans to build a $2.5 million Jewish museum dedicated to the Holtzbergs and to the larger Jewish community of Mumbai. In the wake of the attacks, Mumbai shuls now have 24/7 security. This security is especially tight around

the High Holidays. Despite the terrorists’ cowardly actions, Mumbai today has an extremely strong Jewish community and is safe for Jewish travelers. Today, the Chabad center is run by Rabbi Yisroel Kozlovsky and his wife Chaya, who have named their son Gavriel Noach after Rabbi Holtzberg. Kosher food in Mumbai can be obtained through the Chabad center and can be delivered right to your hotel. The Sassoon Hotel at Magen David Synagogue (340 Sir J.J. Road in the neighborhood of Byculla) also serves kosher food. Otherwise, it’s well known that Hindus maintain a strict separation between vegetarian and non-vegetarian food (some even separate the dishes used). Therefore, many Jewish locals consider it permissible to eat at local vegetarian restaurants. Consult your Rabbi if you are considering this option. Getting There and Around

Airfare from LAX to Mumbai currently starts at around $700 per person round trip. To save on the fare it’s highly recommended to take a prepaid taxi from the airport rather than a metered one. You can also take the bus to Andheri station and take a train to downtown Mumbai. Be aware that Mumbai trains tend to be jam-packed, especially during rush hour. Regular black and yellow-top taxis in Mumbai are cheap and abundant in the city center, but not so much in the suburbs, where they’ve been largely replaced with auto-rickshaws. Be aware that some of these taxis may not have tamper-proof meters. If you want to ride in style, call a private taxi or a chauffeur. You’ll pay a premium but be rewarded with a comfortable ride from a professional driver. Renting a car is discouraged as the city’s chaotic streets can be very difficult for tourists to navigate.

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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News


36 20

29, 2015 | The Jewish Home Quotes TheOCTOBER Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Notable Quotes “Say What?!”

The real issue is chronic dehydration, exacerbated by her lung problem and Clinton’s reluctance to drink water, which has become a source of tension with her staff. “She won’t drink water, and you try telling Hillary Clinton she has to drink water,” said a person in her orbit. – From a Politico article detailing how Clinton’s distain for drinking water led to her dehydration

I drink tons of water. Just as much water as I can possibly drink. – Hillary Clinton in an interview with Katie Couric in 2008, professing her love for water

This weekend, Martha Stewart said Donald Trump should not be president because he is “totally unprepared.” Though to be fair, by Martha Stewart’s standards, we’re all unprepared. – Conan O’Brien

For the record he’s saying BIG LEAGUE. But I like Bigly too. Maybe we need to call Websters. - Instagram post by Donald Trump Jr., commenting on a t-shirt which declared “Vote Bigly,” a word that his father seems to say often

I will consider it a personal insult, an insult to my legacy, if this community lets down its guard and fails to activate itself in this election. - President Obama speaking at the meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation

When it comes to ISIL, we are in a fight, a narrative fight with them, a narrative battle. - White House Spokesman Josh Earnest, on CNN, one day after several ISIS-inspired terrorist attacks in NY, NJ and Minnesota

There’s been a lot in the news about Hillary Clinton’s recent bout of pneumonia. Hillary herself tweeted about it yesterday, saying just like any sick person, she’s “just anxious to get back out there.” That shows how out of touch Hillary is with regular people. People don’t want to go back to work. Nobody’s in bed at 1 p.m. thinking, “Oh man, I wish I was watching Linda’s PowerPoint on how to fill out my expense reports.” – James Corden

I’m not owned by corporate+ I don’t worship the $ nor do I care what Zionists think of me. - Tweet by Newsweek magazine’s senior deputy editor Leila Hatoum after she was accused of being anti-Israel

Her doctors say she’s doing so well, she’ll be up and deleting emails in no time. – Ibid.


Quotes The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home


OCTOBER 29, 2015 | The Jewish Home

Donald Trump’s childhood home in Queens is going up for auction next month. Apparently, the house has five bedrooms, or as Trump calls it, “20 walls.” - Jimmy Fallon

You are welcome Colin Kaepernick. - Tweet by New York Rep. Lee Zeldin (R) on Monday, taking a swipe at cop-hating NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick after authorities took custody of the Chelsea bombing suspect

Hillary Clinton is featured in the upcoming issue of Women’s Health magazine. While next month she’ll be featured in Bad Timing magazine. – Jimmy Fallon, after Clinton collapsed at the 9/11 memorial ceremony

I’ve been briefed about the bombings in New York and New Jersey, and the attack in Minnesota. – First sentence of Hillary Clinton’s short statement to the press shortly after the Saturday night bombings

Secretary Clinton, do you have any reaction to the fact that Donald Trump, immediately upon taking the stage tonight, called the explosion in New York a “bomb”? – First question to Clinton after her statement

Well, I think it’s important to know the facts about any incident like this… I think it’s always wiser to wait until you have information before making conclusions because we are just in the beginning stages of trying to determine what happened. – Clinton’s response

There have been smarter and better looking men than me who are no longer alive. All that is left for us to do is to keep working as hard as we can and rebuild what we lost. - 113-year-old Yisrael Kristal, of Israel, upon celebrating his bar mitzvah a century after he was unable to celebrate due to World War I


The Jewish Home | OCTOBER 29, 2015

A spokesman for the Royal Family says that Prince William and Kate Middleton’s upcoming family trip to Canada will be a “largely casual” and “highly outdoors” event. Then normal people said, “So ... camping. You’re going camping.” – Jimmy Fallon

If I had a bowl of skittles and I told you that just three would kill you, would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem. - Tweet by Donald Trump Jr.

Donald Trump’s running mate Mike Pence said that his role model for the vice presidency is Dick Cheney. To prove it, this weekend Pence had six heart attacks and shot his friend in the face. – Conan O’Brien

Hillary Clinton and her campaign of 2008 started the birther controversy. I finished it… Barack Obama was born in the United States, period. Now we all want to get back to making America strong and great again. – Statement by Trump addressing the Obama birther issue



The Week In News

Israeli Education Snapshot

The current state of the Israeli educational system is analyzed in a report titled “Education at a Glance.” The report, which was published by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, found that although Israel spends a higher proportion of its national budget on education, the actual amount spent per student is quite low. 11% of total public spending went to education, however that’s only $7,840 per pupil, which is far less than the global Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s average of $10,493.

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Israel is improving and has shown increases but there is still a way to go. From 2008 to 2013, the Jewish State raised its spending per student by 17% which is way higher than the 8% average increase amongst other countries. While student population increased by 11% the overall education budget increased by 30%. The report also compared the differences in education levels between men and women. While women are almost twice as likely to have a degree, they are still less likely to have a job. 84% of female college grads have jobs, while 90% of their male counterparts are employed. Income inequality is a big issue as well. Women earn only around two-thirds of the salary that their male counterparts receive.

Remembering 23 Palmach Heroes Great Britain has finally recognized the lives of 23 young Jewish men that were lost helping England in pre-state Palestine in 1941. Martin Sugarman, a British archivist and historian, has made many appeals to the British government to memorialize the brave young men of Operation Boatswain and was finally successful this past month.

Pictured L to R: Attorney Andrew Friedman, President Congregation Bais Naftoli, Cantor Benzion Miller and Cantor Shimmy Miller.

While still under British rule, the Jews of the Yishuv did not cooperate with the British military. However, in 1941, the Brits were looking for help in running a mission against the French forces in Lebanon and Syria. The goal of the mission was to sabotage an oil refinery in Tripoli, Lebanon. Twenty three young members of the Palmach, the Haganah’s elite fighting force, came forward. The plan was to take a boat up the Lebanon coastline to Tripoli and plant explosives in the refinery. After rigorous training, the group set out on the night of May 18, 1941 – and were never seen again. Multiple theories exist as to what happened to the men; they have been listed as “missing in action” ever since that tragic night.

Although multiple searches have been commissioned over the decades, no traces of the men have ever been found. The story of the 23 men has long been memorialized on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem and in many streets across the Holy Land but England has never honored or even acknowledged the brave men who heroically volunteered. Sugarman has made it his mission to procure acknowledgment from England. He wrote to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, explaining all the details of the case and all of the documented information surrounding the mission. Surprisingly, the Commission responded and has set up a memorial at Brookwood cemetery. The cemetery is the largest in country, and one of the biggest in Europe. Hopefully this posthumous tribute will comfort the loved ones of the 23 brave heroes.

Nagel Defends $38B Defense Deal Israel has signed a $38 billion defense aid package with the United States of America. The U.S. promised to give Israel $3.8 billion a year for the next ten years. Five billion dollars are earmarked



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Congregation Bais Naftoli will be hosting the world-renowned Cantor Shimmy Miller, who will be officiating for Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and Sukkos.

The operation is well-known to Israelis but is barely heard of in England.





The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

specifically for joint missile defense projects. The historic agreement is a $700 million per year increase. The Memorandum of Understanding, as the deal is known, took over a year to negotiate.

The deal required a lot of back and forth before landing on a final draft. Perhaps the most controversial component is that unlike the current Memorandum of Understanding, which allow 26.3 percent of the aid to be spent in Israel, this update which starts in 2018, requires all of the money to be spent in America. Critics of the deal have pointed out that this will destroy parts of Israel’s domestic arms industry and may result in Israeli companies outsourcing jobs to Americans. Ya’akov Nagel, the acting National Security Advisor, negotiated the agreement. “The agreement comes at a time of cuts in the U.S. defense budget, including the missile defense budget. The signing of the agreement underscores the depth and

strength of the relationship between Israel and the United States,” said Nagel. He also addressed those that are critical of the deal. “I am exposed to disinformation in the media by irresponsible critics, most of whom do not know the process of negotiations we held over the last three and a half years or the agreement in detail. Unfortunately much of the criticism, even from former and current officials, is totally disconnected from reality,” he said. He is referring to the public criticism he has received from former Defense Ministers Ehud Barak and Moshe Ya’alon. Nagel also noted that “at no point in the negotiations did Israel receive a better offer than the one in the proposal it signed. The highest offer we received is in the proposal that appears in the signed agreement. The claim that we could have receive an additional $7 billion is completely detached from reality.”

Israeli Nukes in the Spotlight For decades, there has been an understanding that although Israel has nuclear weapons, their existence is considered classified. Over the past 40 years, there

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The Week In News


SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

have been slips and mentions of the nuclear capability of the state, however neither the United States nor Israel has ever admitted to it publicly. This week a leaked email from Former Secretary of State Colin Powell forced Israel’s nuclear powers into the spotlight. In a hacked email, Powell writes to a friend of his that the “Iranians can’t use one if they finally make one [...] The boys in Tehran know Israel has 200, all targeted on Tehran, and we have thousands.” The email was written in advance of Benjamin Netanyahu’s 2015 speech to Congress before the Iran nuclear deal was signed. The let-

ter was sent to Democratic donor Jeffrey Leeds, a hedge-fund founder who serves on the board of the Colin L. Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at the City College of New York. A spokesperson for the retired army general, who served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, put out a statement saying that “Gen. Powell has not been briefed or had any knowledge from U.S. sources on the existence and or size of an Israeli nuclear capability. He, like many people, believe that there may be a capability and the number 200 has been speculated upon in open sources.” It added: “This email was

written 10 years after he left government and has not received briefings on classified matters.” The 89-year-old would not say whether he still has a security clearance. He is not the first former U.S. official to acknowledge Israel’s nuclear arsenal. Former President Jimmy Carter has said in many interviews and speeches that Israel has between 150 and 300 nuclear warheads. So do they or don’t they?


















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Unlikely Anti-BDS Hero

Indian-American Milan Chatterjee was an unlikely choice as an anti-BDS movement poster boy when he started UCLA law school in 2014. The Las Vegas native was the Graduate Student Association president at UCLA, but has now chosen to leave the school and complete his degree at NYU. His nearly year-long battle with the members of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel led to his decision to leave the school. Chatterjee was harassed incessantly by BDS activists after stipulating that a diversity event would receive no funding if its organizers had any connection to the BDS movement. According to Chatterjee, “The administration is working in collusion with BDS activists.” It all began when a group called the Diversity Caucus organized a panel event and requested $2,000 from the Graduate Student Association in funding. After initially agreeing to vote on the funding, Chatterjee sent an email stipulating that the group could not receive the funding if it “engaged with any groups that supported divestment from Israel.” He said that giving funds to the Students for Justice in Palestine, a national anti-Zionist group, would imply that the university took a stand in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He also mentioned that some members of the student government were uncomfortable with giving funds to the group. The pro-Palestinian group complained to the administration and the Pandora’s Box has not closed since. The school launched an investigation and concluded that Chatterjee broke the school’s viewpoint neutrality rules. He contends – and the school admits – that the rules were never clearly explained. Chatterjee wants his record wiped clean but the university has refused to do so. The 27-year-old also claims that UCLA allowed BDS to leak the confidential report online. This is all in addition to the intense harassment he was subjected to by campus members of the BDS movement. Chatterjee is not fighting his battle alone. In the past week, over 500 UCLA alumni have signed an online petition calling for a public apology from the university. Donors have threatened to stop giving, and Helen Jacobs-Lepor, a vice president of a large biomedical device company, wrote on her Facebook page

The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home



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The Week In News that she has taken UCLA out of her will. “I am appalled as to how you treated Milan Chatterjee and your failure to protect him from the vicious actions of the BDS movement,” Jacobs-Lepor wrote.

Corruption in Arab Party

An investigation led by Israeli police has revealed that over 20 activists and members of the Arab-Israeli party Balad

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

hid the origin of millions of shekels in party donations. The police arrested senior Balad members, lawyers, activists and accountants. The three-seat party is one of the four Joint (Arab) List parties. The investigation began when a state comptroller report alerted the attorney general that senior members and activist had developed a way to “systematically misrepresent” the origins of millions of donated shekels. Allegedly, Balad reported large donations as having come from “various sources in Israel and abroad” as if they were smaller contributions that came from within Israel. The police report also said the party was involved in suspicious activities including “falsifying corporate documents, forgery, use of forged documents, money laundering, and violating the party financing law.” Unsurprisingly, Balad denied the charges, calling them “fabricated” and “baseless.” “The latest arrests are a brazen and dangerous escalation, but will not deter us from continuing our work,” their statement said.

The founder of Balad, Azmi Bishara, fled Israel for Qatar in 2007 after he was accused of providing Hezbollah, the Lebanese terror group, with information during the Second Lebanon War. The party’s three Knesset members were heavily criticized and condemned for visiting the families of Palestinians who were killed while attacking Israelis.

Palestinian “Proud to be Called a Terrorist” Gaza-based Hamas leader Fathi Hammad has announced that he is very happy to have been named a “global terrorist” by the United States. Hammad, 55, is now in the company of al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, Hezbollah, Algerian Salafists, the Islamic State, Hamas and the Tali-

ban on the U.S. State Department’s “specially designated global terrorist” list.

Rather than take pause at being in such despicable company, Hammad told reporters that the State Department’s decision “only makes me more confident about my path. The threat of killing or arrest? It doesn’t freak me out, not at all. I am looking forward to it.” Hammad added that he feels “proud that I managed to anger America.” The former interior minister for the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip has been charged with coordinating terrorist cells. He has also been marked as the director of Al-Aqsa TV, “which is a pri-

ADVERTORIAL Boondocks American Whiskey, Latest Creation of 40-Year Industry Veteran Dave Scheurich Royal Wine Corporation is proud to introduce Boondocks American Whiskey, a creation from Whisky Advocate Lifetime Achievement Award winner Dave Scheurich. Available in both 95 Proof and Cask Strength 127 Proof, the brand’s entrance into the rapidly growing spirits category marks a new level for American whiskey, introducing a brand that could just be Dave’s crowning achievement. “Royal Wine Corporation has a rich legacy of producing spirits, dating back to the early days of Baron Philip Herzog,” said Mordy Herzog, CEO of Royal Wine Corporation. “We produced beer, wine and spirits in the 1800s and now nine generations later, we could think of no better individual to get back into the spirits game with than David Scheurich, a man with similar ethos and perspective as our organization and family. We are honored that he agreed to come out of retirement to oversee the development of the Boondocks brand as our master distiller.” “Boondocks is an exciting project to be a part of,” said Dave Scheurich, Boondocks’ Master Distiller. Scheurich has helped to create some of America’s most recognized whiskeys over the last 40 years. “With the development of this brand, we wanted to bring a superior product with exceptional taste to the market, but most importantly we wanted a whiskey that delivered an ultra smooth

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The Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

mary Hamas media outlet with programs designed to recruit children to become Hamas armed fighters and suicide bombers upon reaching adulthood.” Though Hammad’s travel will be even more restricted now that he is on the list, the terrorist is still trying to relay his thoughts to America. While speaking to reporters Hammad said he would “like to deliver a message to the American people. Your administration is cheating you, the president is lying to you. They are taking your money, money that should spent on health care, on education, on poor people, and they give it to Israel, which is the biggest sponsor of terrorism in the world.”

Undeserved Citizenship

Hundreds of people are citizens of the United States – and they have their fingerprints to thank. According to a recent report released this week, almost 900 people were granted citizenship because fingerprints that were on old records were not digitized nor included in the Department of Homeland Security’s database. In other cases, fingerprints taken by immigration officials were not sent to the FBI. Hundreds of those should have been deported before their citizenship was granted. Nearly 150,000 older fingerprint records have not been digitized. “This situation created opportunities for individuals to gain rights and privileges of U.S. citizenship through fraud,” said John Roth, the inspector general at Homeland Security. Since the attack in Paris in November and the shooting in San Bernardino, officials have begun to take a closer look at our nation’s immigration policy, raising concern about individuals with ties to terrorism gaining entry into the United States. President Obama has signed into legislation tightened visa waivers that make it harder for travelers to enter the United States from Europe if they had dual citizenship from Iran, Iraq, Sudan or Syria, or had visited one of those countries in the previous five years. About 38 countries, mostly in Europe, participate in the visa-waiver program, which allows their citizens to visit the

United States without a visa on trips of 90 days or less. Homeland Security officials have also begun an extensive review of the K-1 visa, also known as a fiancé visa, which allowed Tashfeen Malik, one of the attackers in San Bernardino, to enter the United States. As naturalized citizens, these individuals who mistakenly were granted citizenship retain many of the rights and privileges of Americans, including serving in law enforcement, obtaining a security clearance and sponsoring other the entry of other foreigners into the United States, the report said. At least three people, who became naturalized citizens after being deported under another name, actually obtained the necessary clearances to conduct security sensitive work. Officials are scrambling to correct the error and since the report the individuals identified have had their credentials revoked. They are considering if their citizenship should be revoked as well.


Corrupt Prison Closes its Doors The Walnut Grove Correctional Facility closed its doors on Thursday for good, and its prisoners were transferred to other state facilities. The privately owned Mississippi facility was accused of being run by gangs and extremely corrupt prison guards. Reports accuse some of the guards for being gang members themselves. There was intel that a prison supervisor had intentionally freed prisoners from their cells to assault unsuspecting rivals. The neighboring town of Walnut Grove, population 1,900, benefited tremendously from the prison, as it provided revenue and employment. The town lobbied to be the site of a prison after one of its major employers, a glove factory, was closed. Walnut Grove’s mayor, William Grady Sims, served for a time as the prison’s warden. The corruption in the jail did not go unnoticed. Judge Carlton Reeves of Federal District Court wrote in a 2012 settlement order that it “paints a picture of such horror as should be unrealized anywhere in the civilized world.” Walnut Grove was run by Management and Training Corp., a Utah-based company that is among the nation’s largest private prison contractors. The Mississippi Department of Corrections said in June that it had decided to shut down Walnut Grove due to budget cuts. Issa Arnita, a spokesman for the private prison contractor, said in a statement that Management and Training Corporation had “made tremendous improvements to overall operations” at Walnut Grove since it took over management in 2012. But the 1,260-bed facility had been operating since 2012 under a federal consent decree for violating prisoners’ constitutional

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rights, and in 2014, Walnut Grove was the scene of two major riots. Last month the Justice Department announced that it would phase out its use of private prisons to host federal inmates after concluding that these types of facilities tend to be more dangerous and less effective than government-run prisons. However that ruling did not affect Mississippi or other states which rely on private firms to manage prison populations. For-profit prisons were originally created to save money but recent research suggests that in reality private prisons do not actually cost taxpayers less money. Walnut Grove’s closing was celebrated by prison rights organizations and civil liberties groups. “Good riddance to Walnut Grove, a cesspool sponsored by Mississippians’ tax dollars,” said Jody Owens, a managing attorney with the Southern Poverty Law Center. According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, there are 192,583 federal inmates in prison in the United States. 11 percent of them – 21,798 – are held in privately managed facilities.

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Sounds like a dream job. Do they have laundry services too?

Hitchhike or Bust Working for Land Need a job? This may be the perfect position for you. Located in Cape Breton, an island in Nova Scotia, The Farmer’s Daughter Country Market is looking for workers. But there’s not many around because the area is so remote so the company is seeking to hire those for out-of-state. Not interested? Well, how about a little incentive? For those who are interested in the position, the company is offering 2 acres of land for those willing to come out and work. “We can’t give you big money, but we can give you an awesome life,” the company’s Facebook post reads. “[W] e can offer you a great incentive to come and try us out. One thing our business does have is LOTS of LAND.”

Upon being accepted for the job, the new employee will get access to two acres of land to put a home on. If the employee stays on at The Farmer’s Daughter Country Market for five years, and everyone still likes each other after that time working together, then the land is granted to the employee. What will your new home look like if you decide to relocate? “It is an area surrounded by beautiful mountains and the shining Bras d’Or lake where kayaks and canoes outnumber motorboats,” the post describes. “We are looking for people who are environmentally conscious, want to be part of a community and will see our business not as you work for us, but we all work together to create something to be proud of.”

A Frenchman threw a hissy fit in a small New Zealand fishing village after trying to hitchhike from the town with no success. It seems that for four days the 27-year-old stood with his thumb out and there were no takers. After the long days, the Frenchman went “berserk,” attacked the “Welcome to Punakaiki” sign and threw road signs into the local river. The town of Punakaiki is home to just 70 fulltime residents. It has no grocery and only minimal public facilities. You have to give the traveler credit though for his consistency. He stood at the same spot

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SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

for four days – even though it was a corner with poor visibility and with nowhere for cars to pull over. It would have taken him a day and a half to walk to the next town over. “Oh he threw an absolute hissy fit; he was lying prone on the road screaming that New Zealanders were [garbage] and he couldn’t wait to get back to Europe,” says local Neil Mouat, who eventually called police. “He was a spoilt millennial, and he created a … din.” The ride seeker had a good night’s sleep, though. He was arrested and is now out on bail.

Apples for Coco Coco may be the luckiest dog in the world but her owner is just a tad crazy. As Apple fans lined up across China last week in the craze to get their hands on the latest iPhone, Coco lounged on his couch while her owner – or probably his valet – scooped up eight iPhone 7s for her. Wang Sicong is the son of Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin, who is esti-

mated to be worth $30 billion. His son makes it his business to show off his bank account to the rest of the world. Just last year, he posted a photo of Coco, his Alaskan malamute, with two Apple watches on her doggie “wrists” that were worth more than $37,000.

Last week, on the day the iPhone came out, Wang shared a photo on Weibo with Coco lounging with her eight black and rose gold iPhone 7s. In China, an iPhone 6 costs 6,988 yuan ($1,047), while the larger iPhone 7 Plus goes for 7,988 yuan ($1,197). “I don’t understand all the show-off posts on (social media),” read the post alongside the photos. “What’s the point? Don’t make me do it?”


Wang has been called “the nation’s husband” because he is China’s most eligible bachelor. He is part of the nation’s second-generation rich, sons and daughters of tycoons that are best known for flaunting their decadent lifestyles. But not everyone is swooning over his wealth. Last year, the official Xinhua news agency published a blistering commentary about Wang accusing him of having “stained the purity of the Chinese (people)” and warning others not to copy the “arrogant and coarse celebrity.” Seems like his taste and manners are going to the dogs.

2017 now. When campers arrived, they received a pizza t-shirt and tote bag. There was a mega pizza dinner, pizza snacks and a make-your-own-pizza bar. The band played songs all about – what else? – pizza.

Pizza Camp In between bites and slices, the revelers enjoyed archery, canoeing and wilderness lessons. How much do you think a night of pizza popping costs? For a mere $100 you too can enjoy pies and pies of pizza. Tums not included.

At this camp, it’s pizza for breakfast, lunch and dinner – and it’s not for kids. Pizza Camp is a summer camp experience for adults that took place in the woods near Minneapolis this weekend. The event has been occurring every year since 2014, so maybe you can sign up for Pizza Party

Wishing you a Happy & Healthy

osh Hashanah 5777!


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The Parenting Week In News

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Proactive Parenting:

A Yom Tov Dilemma Sara Teichman, Psy.D.

Dear Dr. T I’ve never seen this question anywhere, so I hope you will take the time to respond. With Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur approaching, I feel increasingly anxious and tense. It’s not the regular stuff – you know, the cooking, cleaning, shopping; it’s something else entirely. You see, in my family, we took davening very seriously: going to shul for the beginning of shacharis until after maariv was standard. But, today, I am a mom with two children under the age of three: not only is shul not an option, but even davening is difficult. Though I understand logically that I do need to be home with my children, I can’t seem to get rid of the feeling that I am doing something “wrong.” I feel guilty about not going to shul, and even worse at the thought of leaving my kids with a random babysitter. How can I resolve this dilemma? Miriam Dear Miriam, The uncomfortable feeling you are experiencing here is the tension of holding two conflicting ideas in your mind at the same time. On the one hand, you know how important davening is, and you have all those childhood messages in your mind. On the other hand, you understand that your children are your primary responsibility, even on the holiest of days. This kind of conflict where two opposing views exist simultaneously in your mind is called cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance occurs when a person perceives a logical inconsistency in his beliefs, when one idea implies the opposite of the other. In this situation, you feel that being a good person requires you to do two polar opposites – go to shul and stay home/care for your children. However, the reality is that you can only do one of the two, so, inevitably, you end up feeling guilty and frustrated. Cognitive dissonace is uncomfortable, and until we have resolved the issue somehow in our heads, we feel unsettled and confused.

A good part of your dissonance is that either choice threatens your self-concept. You feel like you must choose – be a good mother or go to shul. Whichever decision you make, you will inevitably feel some disappointment because of the choice you failed to take. In short, it feels like a lose-lose situation. Sometimes the tension can be dissolved by changing our thoughts, our cognitions. For example, a couple finding the perfect home – but in the wrong neighborhood – may relieve the dissonance by telling one another that the home is too small for their family. Another way to resolve the tension is by altering our behavior, thereby reducing the dissonance. So, let’s begin by looking at your yom tov possibilities and see if there is any wiggle room. • Can you find an appropriate child care person – a sibling, relative, neighbor, or friend – who can watch your children for even an hour or two? • Is there a shul in your area that provides responsible child care? Though this may not be your regular

shul, you might find that you are comfortable with the set-up for this yom tov. • Can you take turns with another young mom with similar age children? This arrangement means harder work in a shorter time period – but leaves time for davening. You will find that once you have a bit of both worlds, the conflict of the two opposing viewpoints vanishes, and your tension dissipates. There is no need to be anxious when both thoughts fit into your lifestyle and world view. Sometimes, however, it may be impossible to reduce the tension by modifying our behavior; there simply is no “fix.” Instead, we have to examine our cognitions and determine our best option. In this particular situation, if you cannot accomplish both your goals, you want to consider prioritizing your choices by deciding which is more important than the other. You can best achieve this by stepping back a bit and developing some perspective. The famous story of Rav Yisroel Salanter, a Torah giant of the nineteenth century, provides the context for resolving your question. On the night of Kol Nidrei, Rav Salanter did not appear in shul. This was highly unusual and all the congrgants were worried and upset. People went out to search for him and they found him in a small home, feeding an infant and taking care of a small child. He explained that on his way to shul he heard the baby crying. The adults had all gone to shul and left a small child to care for the baby. Knowing that a child was more important than prayer even on the holiest day of the year, he made a choice to take care of the children rather than go to shul. We all know that caring for our children trumps even davening on the holiest of days. Children are our responsibility, and for as long as they are dependent on us – our life’s work. Though it may not feel very

holy, we need to take stregnth in the knowledge that we are doing the right thing by meeting our obligation as parents. So, though the image of us in shul – siddur in hand – resonates with our long-time view of ourselves, it is far, far preferable to deal with the responsibility right in front of our eyes – our children. We women need to look no further than the haftorah of Rosh Hashanah that tells the story of Chana, who was childless for many years. When her son, later to become Shmuel Hanavi, was born after her many, many tefillos, she did not go up to Shiloh, to the Mishkan, for three years – until she finished weaning her son. Chana of all people knew the value of tefillah – but understood even more the responsibility of being a mother. So, if at all reasonably possible, see if you can accommodate both ideas – davening and parenting. But, if forced to make a choice, take pride in your ability to “see straight” and do the less glamourous thing. Not only will you fulfill your resonsibility, but you will also provide a wonderful role model for your children. Shana tovah to you and yours! The Book Nook: The Boy Who Loved Windows by Patricia Stacey is about a mother’s quest to help her young son overcome his challenges. This memoir illustrates the legnths a parent will go to meet her child’s needs. This book also introduces the reader to Dr. Stanley Greenspan and his Floortime method – and its value in the development of the emotional life of the child. Sara Teichman, Psy D. is a psychotherapist in private practice in Los Angeles and Clinical Director of ETTA, L.A.’s largest Jewish agency for adults with special needs. To submit a question or comment, email DrT@

SEPTEMBER 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home

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