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The Week In News


AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home



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The Week In News



The Week In News



Community Happenings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

JEWISH THOUGHT Where We Are. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Conflicting Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 The Weekly Daf . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Jewish History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

FEATURE An Alliance of Nations: Prime Minister Modi’s Historic Visit to Israel Marks an Invigorated Connection between Israel and India. . . . . . . . . . . 18

LIFESTYLES Proactive Parenting: What Should I do?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26


National. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 That's Odd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24




AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

Dear Readers, We’re told that one of the greatest yamim tovim is Tu B’av. The Chassidic masters explain that this is to be understood in the context of “the greater the descent the greater the ascent that follows.” We first mark the Three Weeks culminating in Tisha B’av. These symbolize the suffering, pain, and destruction that befell our ancestors throughout exile. Tu B’av symbolizes the healing and rebirth of our nation. Yes there was terrible anguish and inhumane suffering. But every single story of loss will turn around and ultimately be a story of redemption. Indeed the neviim told us that these very fasts will be yamim tovim when Moshiach comes. It would seem that at first the main focus was obviously on the de-

struction and Churban, but as time goes on and we are getting closer to the end of days, the inner meaning and drive of the Three Weeks is healing our nation and achieving a redeemed world. We survived the tyrants of history; we can survive the apathy of success. The One above promised He would gather us back, in the words of this week’s parshah: “For the Lord your God is a merciful God; He will not let you loose or destroy you; neither will He forget the covenant of your fathers, which He swore to them.” Surely we will experience its fulfillment. Nachamu nachamu ami. Wishing you a wonderful and joyous Shabbos Nachamu,


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The Week In News


AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home


TheHappenings Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

CSS to Expand Its Services to the Los Angeles Jewish Community Yehudis Litvak Community Security Service (CSS) will be expanding its services in the L.A. area. Founded ten years ago in New York, CSS provides training in professional security techniques to any Jewish institution that turns to them for its security needs. CSS’s mission is to “protect the lives and way of life of all members of the American Jewish community.” Until recently, most of CSS’s work took place in the northeastern United

States. Last year, due to local interest and generous sponsors, CSS came to Los Angeles. Currently, CSS is completing a pilot program in two local shuls and is planning its expansion throughout the Los Angeles Jewish community. CSS works in conjunction with other local organizations, such as local and federal agencies and other Jewish institutions. “We have a wonderful police department,” says David Bacall, Director of West Coast

Operations at CSS, “but their job is to react when something happens. That’s not always good enough for our targeted community.” CSS’s goal is to be proactive in preventing terror attacks. According to the FBI, more than 60% of all religious hate crimes target Jews. The success of CSS lies in its volunteers – community members who are especially trained for the task by the CSS professionals. The training is similar to

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the techniques employed by Israeli security services. “It’s a very defensive security training,” says Bacall, explaining that the volunteers are taught to spot suspicious activity. “Attacks are planned weeks, months, even years before they actually take place,” he says. Before terrorists carry out an attack, they spend a significant amount of time gathering information – taking pictures of the target location, getting inside pretending to daven, watching it to determine its busiest hours, as well as times when it would be easiest to infiltrate the building. “We train the members of the shul how to spot those information collectors,” Bacall says. He adds that the presence of the CSS volunteers is in itself a deterrent for potential terrorists. The volunteers are easily noticeable – they wear special jackets with lapel pins as well as surveillance microphones. When information gatherers realize that they would be noticed, they rule out that location and look for an easier target. Institutions interested in increasing their security need not worry that the presence of CSS volunteers would discourage new attendees. The volunteers are trained to be friendly and welcoming. For example, if a volunteer sees a new person entering their shul, they can approach that person and extend a hearty welcome, while learning about them in the natural course of conversation. Meanwhile, the volunteer pays careful attention not only to the answers, but to facial expressions and body language, to see if anything about the newcomer arouses suspicion. CSS consults a rabbinical board to ensure that its operation takes place in accordance with halachah. They provide the trainees with guidelines on how to conduct their patrols on Shabbos, similar to Hatzolah’s guidelines. CSS will be opening up its services to all shuls and Jewish institutions in the Greater Los Angeles area. CSS can be contacted through its website, www.

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



TheHappenings Week In News

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Training on Holocaust Studies for Teachers Takes Place in Los Angeles Yehudis Litvak Over twenty Los Angeles mechanchim and mechanchos, as well as interested community members, attended a three day seminar on Holocaust Studies, presented by Torah Umesorah and hosted by the LA Torah Umesorah Teacher Center. The program was packed with information. Rabbi Shmuel Yaakov Klein, head of publications at Torah Umesorah and director of Zechor Yemos Olam, Torah Umesorah’s division of Holocaust Studies, introduced the program and led several sessions. He spoke about the importance of teaching the

Holocaust. Before 1980, Jewish schools in America did not emphasize the Holocaust. Rabbi Klein, himself a child of Holocaust survivors, related that when he was growing up, the subject of the Holocaust was taboo. Neither his parents nor his teachers, who were also survivors, spoke about it. He didn’t find out until his own wedding that both of his parents had been married to other people before the war and had children who did not survive. Rabbi Klein explained that the decades following the Holocaust were not the right

time to talk about it. The survivors, greatly traumatized by their experiences, tried hard to put the past behind them and rebuild the Jewish community anew. Their tremendous success is apparent today. “90% of mosdos Hatorah are courtesy of the kochos and resources of survivors,” said Rabbi Klein. Now, when Torah and Jewish life are flourishing, is the right time to study the Holocaust. In fact, Rabbi Dovid Schustal, shlita, one of the roshei yeshiva of the Lakewood Yeshiva, said at an assembly that teaching the Holocaust today is a chov ko-

desh – a sacred obligation. Rabbi Klein emphasized that Holocaust studies are not simply history lessons, but “a portal that goes beyond history.” While it is important to teach students the basic facts, Holocaust education must go beyond the facts to address the powerful lessons we can take from the Holocaust, which are just as relevant today. Rabbi Klein delineated ten potential lessons, including the mesirus nefesh exhibited by the Jews during the Holocaust and the eternity of the Jewish people. He quoted the Gerrer Rebbe as saying that when there is a greater darkness, lights are brighter. So too, the light in the Jewish souls shone brightly during this dark chapter of history. Dr. Michael Berenbaum, a Los Angeles-based Jewish Studies professor and Holocaust historian, spoke about the history of anti-Semitism and the evolution of the Holocaust. Rabbi Moshe Perecman of Detroit detailed the history of World War II. Rabbi Shmuel Shapiro of Chicago spoke about mesirus nefesh during the war, as well as the world’s complicity. Rabbi Moshe Lebovits of Toronto spoke about hatzolah and reconstruction and addressed pedagogical challenges when teaching about the Holocaust. The participants also watched videos about the Holocaust, produced by Torah Umesorah, and footage of Rabbi Klein’s and other speakers’ trips to the sites of mass murders and concentration camps in Europe. The teachers had an opportunity for professional networking during lunch and snack breaks. The seminar concluded with a debriefing session, led by Rabbi Klein. The central theme of the seminar was that Holocaust studies need to bring more light into the world. Rather than leaving students with nightmare-triggering horror stories, Holocaust studies need to be uplifting and inspiring, with the overall goal of helping students become better people and better ovdei Hashem. “This is our legacy to live by,” said Rabbi Lebovits. “The Nazis wanted people not be human. As Yidden, we need to become more human, more baalei chessed, more tzelem Elokim… Let us reflect the Ribbono Shel Olam a little bit clearer.” Rabbi Klein touched upon the big questions the students might potentially ask – “why did it happen and what did the Ribbono Shel Olam want from us?” He emphasized the importance of conveying to students that our ability to understand is finite and we can never fully understand the infinite G-d. If the Holocaust is taught properly, then the students should “emerge with the sense of being closer to the Ribbono Shel Olam,” said Rabbi Klein. Students can also gain a greater sense of appreciation of themselves as Jews. One of the films, Strike on Heaven, demonstrated that the Nazis knew full well that “Yiddishkeit would live on as long as there is one Jewish heart still beating.” The G-dliness innate to the Jewish soul is independent of whether a Jew is able to daven in shul or perform any mitzvos. Our existence in itself is a threat to the Nazi ideology of secular humanism.

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



The Week In News


AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

First Jewish School For Children With Special Needs In Our Community Chaya Chazanow As the People of the Book, we value our children’s education highly. Jewish schools everywhere are increasingly taking great care to accommodate different children with many different learning styles. Yet here in Los Angeles, there is one group of children who are severely overlooked and underserved by our schools, despite our focus on education for all. That is not OK with me. I moved to this community four years ago. My son was a baby, just a few months old, and as very young, brand new parents, my husband and I were already learning very quickly that we would have to battle the world for this child. It was not an easy move, and we struggled to find resources and families to connect to, who could advise us in navigating the foreign world of special needs. To be honest, I was quite shocked to discover that despite having one of the largest Jewish communities, and so many synagogues and schools, Los Angeles lacks a comprehensive support network for Jewish special needs families. Granted, there are a few wonderful programs, but each address specific areas of need. Few are geared to very young children or brand-new parents. We found no one to guide us fully through the big picture, to advise us on how to deal with both developmental and medical issues in a very complex system. To compound this, we did not initially try so hard to reach out. We were hesitant to open up about the huge challenges we faced every single day. We didn’t tell many people that our son has a non-inherited genetic disorder, which affects every single aspect of his daily life. We didn’t want people to judge him; we wanted him to have a fair chance at being accepted for who he is, and not for his disabilities. But as months passed, despite hours of therapies, doctor visits and numerous medications and supplements daily, our son did not “catch up” as quickly as we had hoped. As the babies of friends and family continued to grow, to walk and talk and become toddlers, he continued to struggle. It became clear to us that this was not going to be something we could hide, and we redirected our focus towards trying to educate, to rebuild, and to create a strong support network for our son and for ourselves. On this rollercoaster journey, we have gained insight into some key issues holding back this community from providing greater support to families like ours. We have met wonderful, kind people who have opened themselves up to our son and made him feel like he belongs, is understood and accepted. More commonly however, we have discovered a supreme lack of awareness and familiarity with children and adults with special needs. This leads to discomfort and avoidance, because people simply don’t know

how to engage or to relate. How is it possible, that in a nation of people who are baishanim, rachmanim and gamlei chassadim, we find that this portion of our society is seriously overlooked? On occasions when we bring our son to social events or to shul, we see so many of our friends and family whose typical children do not know how to interact, to engage, and to include him. How different would this be if they went to school with children like him? If they were consistently exposed to children with different challenges, who may or may not look like them? If they were given guidance in a structured setting to accept and include all children, of all abilities? They are all children after all. They all deserve a chance. Due to the current inability of the Jewish schools to cater to many children with special needs, these children have no choice but to attend non-Jewish private or public schools. They must forgo a Jewish education to receive the help they need; yet even in the non-Jewish system, the lack of decent therapeutic programs is astounding. When my son was turning three, and had to enter the school system, I was determined to find him the best school in existence. I didn’t approach Jewish schools as I knew they don’t have the resources to provide for my son’s needs. Reluctantly resigned to that, I explored the public school system. But as I searched, and toured school after school, I discovered that the program I was looking for simply did not exist in LA. Our children deserve a right to a solid Jewish education. They deserve to come home with pictures of Menorahs instead of Xmas trees. Just like all children, our children deserve a fighting chance to succeed. The good news is, we are now making that happen. This fall 2017 we are partnering with Friendship Circle of Los Angeles to operate a pilot class for a Jewish comprehensive therapeutic school for children with special needs. FCLA has a beautiful, state of the art facility, complete with an incredible adapted playground, and a sensory room in progress. Please open your hearts to our special children. Take on this mitzvah and help them gain access to their dreams; to receive a Jewish education and the tools they need to become successful, contributing members of our society. To make a donation please go to https:// Alternatively, checks can be made payable to Friendship Circle of Los Angeles and mailed to 1952 S. Robertson Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90034. To find out more about funding or how you can be involved, please contact the Friendship Circle at (310)2800955.

TheHappenings Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home


The Story Of How “Tu B’av Together” The Global Day For Shidduchim Came To Be Nosson Gold

It will be a great day… in fact Tu B’Av was always a great day for shidduchim.. for thousands of years. Picture this powerful scene: Thousands of Jews from across the globe, united in tefillah for the zechus of all singles in Klal Yisrael that have not yet found their zivuggim. This momentous occasion will take place on Monday, August 7th on the holy day of Tu B’Av at 10:00AM EST. This special Tu B’Av Together initiative, has been spearheaded by the well-known kiruv and rescue organization Yad L’Achim as a zechus so that the women they rescue will merit finding their bashert. A minyan of talmidei chachamim will be davening in Amuka specifically for the previously submitted names (names can be submitted for free), while simultaneously all of worldwide Jewry will unite in reciting a designated eight chapters of tehillim. How did this revolutionary “Tu B’Av Together” initiative come to be? What was the humble story behind this special effort benefiting all singles in Klal Yisrael? This is the story. ORIGINS Yad L’Achim was founded over 60 years ago by Rav Sholom Dov Lifshitz zt”l together with the support of Gedolei Yisroel, to help new immigrants arriving to Eretz Yisrael. One of the first kiruv organizations ever created, over the years Yad L’Achim helped with Russian and French immigrants; placing thousands of boys and girls into yeshivas throughout Eretz Yisrael. After receiving many calls about Jewish women trapped in Arab Villages, Yad L’Achim established an entire division dedicated to prevention, as well as the rescue of trapped women and children. Oftentimes, these women are rescued with nothing more than the clothes that they are wearing at the time. Furthermore,

Yad L’Achim helps rehabilitate them and makes certain that they are provided with all of the necessary financial, physical, and mental provisions, so that they can lead healthy lives. With Hashem’s help, many women that were rescued, have married Bnei Torah and have established beautiful Jewish homes that will last for generations. TEFILLAH FOR EVERYONE For many years, Yad L’Achim would arrange for talmidei chachamim to daven on behalf of these women so that they would merit finding their bashert. Over time, Yad L’Achim began accepting names from Jews throughout the world, who wanted the powerful tefillos of the talmidei chachamim for finding a shidduch or other personal requests. Names can always be submitted for tefillah through Yad L’Achim even without a donation; in a policy instituted by Rav Lifschitz zt”l. Tu B’Av has been synonymous with shidduchim from the times of chazal and is mentioned as a joyous day. As it states in Maseches Taanis, “There have never been such good days for Klal Yisrael as Tu B’Av and Yom Kippur”. Therefore, one of the most popular times of the year when people submit their names for tefillah, is before Tu B’Av, the 15th day of Av. CARING FOR EACH OTHER From time to time, Yad L’Achim hosts special events featuring speeches by women who were rescued through the help of Yad L’Achim. Other times, the speakers would be people who did the rescuing. After all events, a common occurrence took place. Attendees approached the speaker or Yad L’Achim staff and asked for the names of the rescued women and children. They wanted to daven for them as well as for the overall success of Yad L’Achim. The natural desire of Jews to help other Jews shined through, davening for each other. Mi K’Amcha Yisrael. The Jewish people have been connected through tefillah in times of happiness and sorrow. Klal Yisrael have a natural desire to help each other and one of the great


ways is to daven for one another. As Tu B’Av was once again approaching, the initiative was formed to indeed ensure a day of Klal Yisrael united though tefillah. After consultation with Rabbonim and Gedolei Yisrael, the “Tu B’Av Together” initiative was established, as a day when we can unite in tefillah for all singles in Klal Yisrael that are in dire need of shidduchim. A special minyan of talmidei chachamim will be in Amuka all day of Tu B’Av to daven for all the names submitted to Yad L’Achim, and has been noted above there is no need for a donation in order to submit names. And at the very same time, let’s daven together on Tu B’Av Together. Let us all try to carve out some time from our hectic lives for our brothers and sisters who have not yet found their bashert. On Monday morning, Tu B’Av, (August 7th), at 10:am EST, Yidden from all stripes of life will daven the following kapitlach: ,‫ קכ”ד‬,‫ קכ”א‬,‫ פ”ב‬,‘‫ ע‬,‫ ל”ח‬,‫ל”ב‬ ‫ קכ"ח‬,‫( קכ"ז‬Psalms 32,38,70,82,121,124, 127,128). It would be wonderful if people would get together, share the message of Tu B’Av Together and daven for each other on this

special day. Yad L’Achim has established the website WWW.TUBAVTOGETHER.COM where people can - Download the Tehillim for Tu B’Av Together - Submit names for tefillah in Amuka – no donation required to submit names - Learn more about this special day. For more information or to submit names call Yad L’Achim at 1-866-9235224 or visit It would be a wonderful zechus for us all, if we grabbed this revolutionary opportunity, and widely share the message of Tu B’Av Together and daven for each other on this auspicious day. For more information, to download the tehilim to be recited, or to submit names call Yad L’Achim at 1-866-923-5224 or visit

Hancock Park Synagogue Welcomes Hungarian Mayor On July 21st, Attorney Andrew Friedman, President of Congregation Bais Naftoli, hosted Mayor Peter Hanusi of Mateszalka, Hungary. Mayor Hanusi visited the West Coast with a five-member delegation led by Ambassador Balazs Bokor, former West Coast Consul General. While Mateszalka’s name is unfamiliar to most Angelenos, the city contributed two important players in Jewish Hollywood.

Actor Tony Curtis’s parents hailed from there, and Paramount Pictures’ founding father, Adolph Zukor, spent his formative years in the city. The delegation indicated plans for a memorial museum and coffee house to be dedicated in memory of Curtis and a film history museum in memory of Zukor. The museums will focus on the life and successes of these two Hollywood icons.

Mayor Hanusi indicated that the city of Mateszalka had a vital Jewish community prior to the Holocaust and is proud of its Jewish traditions. The synagogue on the main street is currently serving as a community center and hopes to be refurbished and renovated with both government and private funds.


Living with In theNews Times The Week

By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz Publisher of the Yated Ne’eman

Think about it. Last week was Shabbos Chazon and the signs of mourning were everywhere. This week is Shabbos Nachamu and you can feel the happy energy. Celebration is everywhere. What has changed between last week and this one? Last week, we mourned the absence of a Bais Hamikdosh. This week, it still lies in ruins. The shu’olim still run rampant over the Har Habayis. We are sorely lacking so much. Why are we suddenly happy? Yeshayahu, the novi of nechomah, speaks to us seven weeks in a row. This week we read the first of those seven haftoros. What is nechomah anyway? What does the word mean? The posuk in Bereishis (6:6) states after Adam and Chava sinned, “Vayinochem Hashem,” indicating that Hashem, kevayachol, “regretted” what He had done. Rashi explains that the word nechomah also refers to stepping back, re-evaluating a situation and shifting perspective. Apparently, this is a facet of comfort, the general use of the word nechomah. In the haftorah of this Shabbos, Yeshayahu repeats the comforting words of his hopeful prophecy. He says, “Nachamu, nachamu ami,” telling Klal Yisroel twice to be comforted. Clearly, there is significance to the nechomah bekiflayim, the double measure of solace. At the end of Maseches Makkos, when Rabi Akiva sees the chaos and impurity on the Har Habayis as a harbinger of better times, his friends proclaimed, “Akiva, nichamtonu. Akiva, nichamtonu.” They repeated the comment, following the lead of the novi who had doubled his words. Perhaps we can explain that nechomah, comfort, has two stages. There is the actual comfort, the words that form a healing balm on our souls as we are reassured that all will be well. There is also the comfort that is brought about when we are no longer myopic and step back to look again and see a bigger picture. This Shabbos, we are promised that Hakadosh Boruch Hu will assist us in achieving both definitions: nachamu,

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

Where We Are nachamu. Once again, the Jewish people approach Shabbos Nachamu in an all-toofamiliar place. The nations of the world are aligned against us as we attempt to live decent, honorable, peaceful lives. As we are forced to fight against evil, they chant for our deaths. They hate us. Once again, the Har Habayis has been overtaken by shuolim. Throughout our history, we have encountered this animosity. Although there have been times when the hatred was delicately concealed, it is currently

countries in which anti-Semites currently flex their muscles. Anti-Semitism morphs to fit with the times. The age-old hatred for the Jewish nation adopts different slogans and chants, but at the heart of it all is the same old hatred for Yitzchok by Yishmoel, and Yaakov by Eisov and Lavan. Whether it’s under the guise of blaming the Jews for spreading the plague, or drinking human blood, as in the days of old, or cloaked in humanitarian vestments, hate is hate. In Europe, a continent soaked with Jewish blood, it is in vogue to bash Jews, demonstrate against them, accuse

Last week we were lost, this week we are found. becoming more in vogue and acceptable to bash Jews. It has become acceptable for celebrities and icons to express their open hatred. While they couch their rhetoric in words of sympathy for the poor Palestinians, the truth emanates. They couldn’t care less about the Palestinians. They just hate Jews. Once again, Jews in Europe cower and seek escape routes, a chilling reminder of seventy years ago. Arabs kill Jews and then demonstrate throughout Israel and in European capitals against Jewish people. Lovers of Israel are unwelcome in American universities, which drive campaigns against Israel. The Left battles Israel at every opportunity, offering nonsensical, hypocritical excuses for their anti-Semitism. Much of the modern anti-Semitism is depicted as anti-Zionism, though the folly is obvious. Jews fight for their safety and are condemned. Millions of Jews were driven to their deaths from those very

them of the vilest crimes, and create an atmosphere reminiscent of the darkest days of Jewry that many believed we would never return to. The eis tzorah is palpable in England, where Jews were burned alive; in Paris, where the Talmud was lit up and destroyed; in Germany, home of Kristallnacht and the Holocaust; Poland, home of the crematoria; Austria, birthplace of Hitler; and many other places. We wonder how it will end. When will justice triumph? When will care and concern about the good and the kind be paramount? We recognize that we suffer persecution and discrimination because we are Jews. The world’s hatred of the Jew is not derived from their concern about human rights violations or political decisions. We are reminded regularly that sinah yordah l’olam, hatred for the Jewish people descended to the world as we gathered at

Har Sinai to accept the Torah. Since that time, we have been cast apart from other nations, despised, reviled, stomped on and murdered. Miraculously, we endure. This Shabbos, we will go to shul and listen as the haftorah proclaims that Hashem calls out to us and says, “Nachamu, nachamu Ami. Be comforted, be comforted My nation.” Where do we find answers to our questions? In the Torah. These parshiyos give us the depth we need to see clearer, the second type of nechomah. A young man boarded a bus to Bayit Vegan and saw one of its most distinguished residents, Rav Moshe Shapiro, sitting there. He approached the rov and asked, “How are we to understand what happened during World War II?” Rav Moshe looked at him and nodded. “Shalom,” he said, effectively ending the conversation. He didn’t say another word. Later, someone asked why he hadn’t answered the questioner. Rav Moshe explained, “He knows where I live in Bayit Vegan, and he knows how much time he had until the bus reached my stop. He asked a question whose answer is much longer and more complex than the few minutes of the bus ride, so clearly he didn’t want the real answer, but a conversation, and I don’t have time for small talk.” To understand the events of Jewish history, we must peer beyond the curtain, studying and scrutinizing the happenings of our people and the pesukim of the Torah. Small talk and pedestrian thoughts will not lead to understanding what has befallen our people throughout the millennia. The pesukim of this week’s parsha form a retrospective review, reminding us of the beginnings of our nation and our first footsteps as the Chosen People. We feel along with Moshe Rabbeinu as he pleads for mercy. “Asher mi Keil kamocha - Who else is like You, Hashem?” he wonders (Devorim 3:24). Rashi explains that a king of flesh and blood is surrounded by advisors who question his merciful decisions, whereas Hashem can extend mercy without listening to others. There is a spark of nechomah. We read about the essence of life, “V’atem hadveikim baHashem Elokeichem chaim kulchem hayom,” and we feel a surge of hope. Life means connecting to Hashem, displaying more intensity in tefillah, and demonstrating more concentration when we sit by a Gemara (Devorim 4:3). We continue by listening closely to Moshe Rabbeinu’s reminder: “Mi goy

Living with In theNews Times The Week

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

gadol asher lo Elokim kerovim eilov? Who else has this gift and ability that Hashem listens every time we cry out to Him?” (Devorim 4:7). Has Hashem performed such miracles for any other nation? Has He gone to war for them and inspired awe and terror like He has done for us? (Devorim 4:34). We study the Aseres Hadibros, which form the building blocks of our lives as Torah Jews. We recognize that they set us apart from the rest of the world, and by following their precepts, we are placed on a higher, blessed plane. We study the words of “Shema Yisroel Hashem Elokeinu Hashem Echod,” which are the bedrock of our faith. We wake up to those words and go to sleep to them. They form the last physical action by souls ascending to heaven and have been the enduring final message of martyrs through the generations. In 6:18, we are taught how to live as ehrliche Yidden: “You should act honorably and be truthful; then Hashem will be good to you and will bring us into the land He swore to our forefathers and will drive away our enemies from confronting us.” If we seek Hashem’s protection and aid in battle, we must affirm our commitment to honesty and to battling corruption. Not just by listening, but by acting. If we tolerate men of ill-will and sometimes even promote them, how can we expect Hashem to fight for us? We read about how He will lead us into the Promised Land, where we will find homes filled with good. It is an attainable goal, assured to us by He who is “ne’eman leshaleim s’char.” If we follow the word of Hashem, as laid out in the pesukim of this week’s parsha, we know that we will merit salvation, prosperity and peace. The founding of Israel and the Six Day War were turning points in our history, but people became enamored with the power of man and seemed to overlook the Hand of Hashem. We are sent regular reminders that if we forget the Divine role and Hand in our existence, we are doomed to experience tragedy. We merit nechomah when we recognize that we are kachomer beyad hayotzeir, wholly dependent upon Hashem’s mercy for our very existence. Parshas Va’eschanon and the Aseres Hadibros are always lained on Shabbos Nachamu to remind us that our nechomah arrives when we follow the Aseres Hadibros and the Torah. It is through fidelity to Torah and Hashem’s word that we merit living peacefully, in Eretz Yisroel and everywhere else. A young bochur davened in the bais medrash of the Bluzhever Rebbe. On Chanukah, the crowd would file by the rebbe after hadlokas neiros to receive his good wishes. The boy asked his friend to take a picture of him as the rebbe spoke to him. The Bluzhever Rebbe noticed. When

the bochur reached him, the rebbe took the boy’s hand and held it. “Bochur’l,” he said, “you probably want a picture with me because I am a relic of a vanished world. And while it’s important to remember what was, it is also important that you understand that within you and your generation lie the koach, the ability, to guarantee its survival.” We study what was because it gives us a charge for the future and a path forward.

That is why we rejoice now, comforted and secure in what we have learned over the past nine days. Over this time, we got in touch with our source, origin and destiny, and recognize our marching orders for the future. We even draw comfort from the fact that we mourned and that we have never forgotten, despite so many years and so much suffering. After studying the messages of Eicha and Chazon, how can we feel anything

else but “Nachamu, nachamu Ami?” We understand where we were and where we are and how we got here. We are thus able to experience consolation. Armed with the Torah’s enduring message of where we are going and how to get there, we reach the state of consolation, nechomah. Nachamu, nachamu. Forever and ever. Amein.


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The Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home






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The Week In News

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Torah Musings The Week In News


AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

Conflicting Messages Sarah Pachter

When I was a teenager, I often read Seventeen Magazine. I’ll never forget reading an article about body image that highlighted how important it is to eat healthy food such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. I found it ironic that on the very next page there was an advertisement for candy with a beautiful model eating a Snickers bar. Flipping through a few more pages, I spotted an article about the importance of preventing sun damage. It was now “uncool” to lie out in the sun. But then further on – wouldn’t you know it – there was an ad for tanning oil. I wondered: How is it that a single magazine has two conflicting messages right next to one another? As a culture, we are constantly bombarded with conflicting messages. When driving in Los Angeles, one will find a tanning bed salon right next to a botox

center. Pay to get wrinkled! Pay to delete your wrinkles! Similarly, a “freeze the fat” billboard might be seen atop a McDonald’s restaurant or a Krispy Kreme donut shop. We’re not just presented with conflicting messages about food and beauty products. We’re sent conflicting messages from the greater society at large – about our values, our morals, who we are as people (men and women), and our families. Women are expected to be the best moms in the world, always being present with their children while simultaneously succeeding in the workforce. This balance is a tight rope and rarely pulled off with grace and ease, yet we are expected to be perfect, to be involved in PTA and other community activities while simultaneously cooking beautiful meals, not to mention keeping our home clean. And we’re sup-

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posed to do it 1950s-style, with an effortless smile, a cute outfit, and high heels. There are great expectations on Jewish men, as well. They are supposed to accomplish it all: pursuing and achieving a higher education degree while succeeding in their Torah learning. They are expected to pay tuition and standard bills, while being charitable with their time and money. And they are supposed to be sensitive and understanding towards us, but should never seem vulnerable or weak in any way. Researcher and author, Bren Brown, writes in her book Daring Greatly that we as women ask men to be vulnerable, and share their “real selves” by letting us into their private thoughts, the way we women often share our innermost feelings with each other. We plead with them to tell us why they are afraid. But the truth is that most women can’t stomach it...we want our men to be strong! Aren’t women sending men a conflicting message: I will provide you a safe space to share your most vulnerable selves…as long as you aren’t too vulnerable? Other examples of conflicting messages in our time, as outlined by Brené Brown, include: • Don’t make people feel uncomfortable, but be honest. • Be perfect, but don’t make a fuss about it, and don’t take time away from anything like your family or your partner or your work. • Just be yourself, but not if that means being shy or unsure. I once saw a store with mannequins wearing all the latest trends. At the bottom of the storefront display it said, Be yourself. Inherent in such a display is that we are expected to wear their clothing and that doing so makes you more you. The bottom line is that it is not possible for any of us to be all things to all people. Just as we cannot possibly expect to eat Snickers bars all day and maintain a healthy lifestyle. We cannot expect to visit tanning beds while staying wrinkle-free. We cannot expect to be everything to everyone else and still maintain inner happiness. Gevurah, one of the character traits that make up the sefiros, is about setting healthy boundaries. Gevurah, strength, sometimes requires that we figure out what we deeply want and then say “no” to something else that we also want in order to achieve the primary goal. Do we want health or the Snickers bar? Well, maybe both. But when we decide what we want more, it makes the other choice less appealing. I believe that in the realm of child rais-

ing the issue of time management is the hardest balance to achieve. If we are out every night at a community event or dinner, we are missing precious time with our family and not giving them the attention that they desperately seek and need. Women bear the brunt of judgment for the choices they make in order to achieve balance. If a woman tells people that she is a stay-at-home mom, they often look at her like she must have a brain the size of a pea, capable of only holding information about diapers and wipes. “Oh, that’s all?” they will ask out loud. Simultaneously, if she tells others about her professional work, they may very well look at her as though she has committed a heinous crime. “Well, who is caring for your children then?” This is the standard, accusatory response. It is easy to feel like we are trapped between a rock and a hard place. Whether we as parents decide to work or stay at home, we must all use gevurah to help us maintain balance. We must also stick with a balance that works for us, and not necessarily others. Whether it means never attending functions on weeknights, or going out as a married couple when one spouse or both need a replenishing break, we must all do what works for us as individuals, regardless of what popular society demands. Here are some practical tips on how to achieve the work-home balance despite these conflicting messages we are constantly bombarded with: • Decide how often you will work and when you will work, and stick to it. For example: I personally aim to only teach a maximum of one night per week. Once I am booked, it doesn’t matter how enticing other lecture opportunities sound; I decline. Even though it is hard to say no, I’m saying yes to my family. • When you aren’t home, don’t feel guilty about needing childcare to watch your children. And don’t try to accomplish anything work-related when you are with your children. Rebbetzin Heller once said, “When you are with your children, be with them, and when you are at work, be at work.” Creating that compartmentalization can certainly help us achieve a better balance. • Cut back and delegate. This cannot be said enough. Either cut back on household responsibilities, childcare, or your work load. If it is impossible to cut back, then try to find help, either with family, paid help, or volunteers. Delegate areas that can be done by someone else. We don’t need to feel guilty about taking these measures for it can help in every facet of our work/home balance. Despite conflicting messages in child raising, or any other aspect of life, we can all learn to achieve a better balance. When a real balance is established and maintained, both career and family life will benefit mutually and beautifully.

Torah The Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

The Weekly Daf Rabbi Shmuel Wise, Maggid Shiur of

Aside from tefillah, what is another halachah that requires a minyan? This week, on 15a, we learned about appraising land that had been donated to the Beis Hamikdash for someone who wishes to redeem it. The mishnah taught that the appraisal must be conducted by ten men, one of whom is a kohen. Shmuel there provides the source for this halachah: in the passage that discusses the appraisal of various consecrated assets, the Torah mentions the word “kohen” ten times, giving us the total number of appraisers required. Our intuition would say that, okay, if the Torah says kohen ten times, then ten kohanim should be required for the job. Not so, Shmuel explains. Indeed the first time the Torah mentions the word kohen, it teaches us that appraiser #1 must be a kohen – not a yisrael. Then the Torah says the word kohen again. This, Shmuel explains, is a case of “an exclusion after an exclusion.” Meaning that the Torah already excluded a yisrael from the job the first time

kohen #4, you guessed it, we have another inclusion by way of “exclusion after exclusion.” This seesawing between inclusion and exclusion should continue until kohen #10, yielding five exclusions and five inclusions. Thus five of the appraisers should have to be kohanim, not just one. The Gemara capitulates with the word, “kashya,” i.e. it’s indeed a problem and there’s no clear answer. The commentators teach us then when the Gemara concludes with the word “kashya” it means that the Gemara leaves open the possibility that a viable answer exists (as opposed to “teyuvta,” “it has been refuted,” which is basically the Talmudic equivalent of a KO). So let’s try something to defend the honor of the holy Shmuel. Here’s what I would suggest: Shmuel could perhaps counter that if the Torah wanted to require five kohanim for the job it would’ve conveyed this point in some more direct fashion that the above seesaw endeavor between “exclusion” and

it said the word kohen. It then could have conveyed that ten appraisers are required some other way. Yet the Torah chose to introduce appraiser #2 by repeating the exclusionary term “kohen.” The Torah wouldn’t redundantly exclude the same thing twice, so we say, that the Torah actually means to include, that is, appraiser #2 can even be a yisrael! Shmuel takes for granted that the same rule of “an exclusion after an exclusion = an inclusion” applies to the rest of the kohen repetitions as well, hence, nine out of the ten appraisers may be yisraelim. Rav Huna attacks Shmuel on this point. Rav Huna argues that the “an exclusion after an exclusion = an inclusion” rule should only yield five inclusions here. Here’s why: once the Torah taught an inclusion with kohen #2 and stopped there (and taught the requirement for ten appraisers some other way), the halachah would be that only one of the ten appraisers has to be a kohen. But then the Torah says the word kohen a third time. Since kohen #2 was an inclusion, kohen #3 is actually an “exclusion after an inclusion,” or in other words, a regular old exclusion. Then with

“inclusion.” So we stop this process by kohen #2. The result is that the Torah has conveyed a simple message: only do the kohen exclusion once; everyone else can be yisraelim. The rest of the kohanim repetitions are there just a means of adding the remaining number of people. The exclusion/inclusion process though has already been exhausted. Can kings or kohen gadols do yibum or chalitzah? The first mishnah of the second perek which we began this week (18a) discussed these issues. The mitzvah of yibum arises in the event a man dies childless, leaving a widow and surviving brother behind. The Torah says that ideally the surviving brother should enter into the levirate (yibum) marriage with the widow and thereby perpetuate the name of his deceased brother. One must appreciate the novelty of this mitzvah given that a union with a brother’s wife (even after divorce or the brother’s death if he did leave children) is normally considered incestuous. Yet, in the yibum circumstance, the Torah suddenly considers this union to be a mitzvah! If yibum

marriage isn’t practical, then chalitzah is done to free the widow to marry someone else. In the chalitzah ceremony, the court has the widow spit in front of the brother who refused her, and she removes his shoe. It comes as no surprise that the mishnah forbids chalitzah where the surviving brother happens to be the king of the Jewish people. Clearly this degrading procedure is not something befitting for a king. But the mishnah also forbids the king from performing yibum. Why? What is degrading about marrying the widow? Rambam (Melachim 2:3) implies that indeed there is nothing degrading about yibum. It’s just that there is a halachic link between yibum and chalitzah that says: if one isn’t eligible for chalitzah, he’s not eligible for yibum either. Rashi on 19b, however, suggest that yibum too is degrading, for the brother is “perpetuating his brother’s name.” What could Rashi mean by this? Rashi seems to be saying that yibum is a difficult mitzvah because, to a degree, it entails living someone else’s life. Normally when someone builds a family it provides the gratifying sense of building a legacy – for himself. In yibum, however, the brother acts essentially as an agent to build someone else’s legacy – a humbling mitzvah that crosses the threshold of an act that is deemed too far beneath a king’s dignity to do. As far as a kohen gadol, the mishnah rules that he may not perform yibum because the Torah expressly prohibits a kohen gadol from marrying a widow. The Gemara (19a) wonders: true, the negative commandment says that this kohen gadol should not marry her, but the mitzvah of yibum says that he should marry her. The halachah is that where a conflict exists between a positive commandment and a single negative commandment (lashes-level or lower), the positive commandment overrides the negative one – so this kohen gadol should do yibum! The Gemara answers that on the biblical level, yibum is justified, however the Rabbis decreed against doing yibum here. Why? Because allowing a kohen gadol to be intimate with this widow can only be justified the first time when the mitzvah of yibum is actually being fulfilled. Once the mitzvah has been fulfilled it reverts to a union that is biblically forbidden. The rabbis were concerned that if we allowed yibum at all, they might be intimate a second time and violate a Torah prohibition. But, wait a second, I thought we said earlier that intimacy with a brother’s wife is normally a severe prohibition, and the prohibition is superseded by the mitzvah of yibum. We should therefore challenge the idea of ever practically doing yibum since we should say as above: once the first act

is done and the mitzvah is over, it should now be regarded as an incestuous relationship (yet the halachah of course is that the couple can remain married)! One could answer this question by recalling the distinction the Gemara made back on 12b between a “pushing off” permit and a “total” permit. Sometimes, such as in the case of a kohen gadol who falls in yibum to this widow, the Torah is merely pushing off the prohibition in face of the mitzvah. Pushing off requires an ongoing reason to justify pushing off the prohibition. As soon as that reason goes away (e.g. the yibum mitzvah was fulfilled) the prohibition will snap right back – as opposed to the “brother’s wife” prohibition of every yevama (widow in a yibum situation) where the Torah completely permits that prohibition. Essentially the Torah says that vis-à-vis her yavam (brother who does the yibum) the brother’s wife prohibition doesn’t exist. That’s why there’s no discussion about any snap-back prohibition in a typical case of yibum. It is interesting that even though a king may not do chalitzah, as it is beneath his dignity, a kohen gadol does do chalitzah. Apparently, although of course a kohen gadol is a very prominent position, chalitzah is not considered beneath the honor of this office – only for the highest leader, the king himself. But then things get very interesting when the Gemara on 18b questions the mishnah’s ruling that a kohen gadol may testify on someone’s behalf. “How could the mishnah allow a kohen gadol to testify,” the Gemara wonders, “isn’t this beneath his dignity?” The Gemara concludes that, yes, it’s beneath his dignity, and the mishnah only permits the kohen gadol to testify in an unusual case where it’s not beneath his dignity. Question: the mishnah rules that is it not overly degrading for the kohen gadol to partake in chalitzah. Recall that chalitzah entails having the widow spit in front of the brother. If that isn’t overly degrading why does the Gemara feel strongly that testifying for someone is? Perhaps the answer is that with all of the potentially humiliating aspects of chalitzah, ultimately the choletz (man in the chalitzah) does experience the empowering sense that he is the one needed to release this women to marry. This contrasts against the chore of testifying on someone’s behalf where a witness, during which he is pretty unlikely to feel any great sense of having a great role in the process. The Gemara therefore considers this process to be completely unacceptable for a kohen gadol.



Feature The Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

An Alliance of Nations: Prime Minister Modi’s Historic Visit to Israel Marks an Invigorated Connection between Israel and India Brendy J. Siev

Even before Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in Israel, Israelis called his three-day visit “successful and historic.” This is, after all, the first trip to Israel by an Indian premier. Modi has always admired Israel’s technical and military prowess, but, in keeping with tradition of his predecessors, has never before visited as prime minister. He hailed this visit as “historic,” and Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet that this meeting “will deepen cooperation in a wide range of fields.” Netanyahu, who referred to Modi as “my friend,” escorted and accompanied Modi on the visit. “This is not a practice we extended to other dignitaries. It is part of the indication from our perspective indicating the importance we attach with this visit,” noted Yuval Rotem, DG of Israeli foreign ministry. Modi said his visit was “based on the deep centuries-old connection between our two peoples. I share the opinion of many of my people, who see Israel as a beacon of technology, as a country that has managed to survive even though the odds were against it.” While Modi has tried to work with the Palestinians as well, he considers collaboration with Israel more important and more critical. Modi didn’t travel to Ramallah as most leaders who want to appear politically balanced do. This sparked Muslim criticism of the visit and of Modi himself, who claim that the visit will “strengthen the occupation.” In fact, traditionally India has been wary about partnering with Israel. Although India and Israel established full diplomatic ties 25 years ago, India depends greatly on Arab states and Iran for oil, and the country also has a large Muslim population. Islam is the second largest religion in India, with roughly 172 million followers. India’s leadership has not wanted to alienate this base, nor their oil source. Furthermore, India’s leaders have been publicly supportive of the Palestinian cause, though privately they have tried to forge alliances with Israel. A Welcome with Open Arms Prime Minister Netanyahu greeted the Indian leader after he touched down at Ben Gurion International Airport at a red carpet ceremony that included an honor guard of IDF soldiers and dozens of Israeli dignitaries. In a welcome speech on the tarmac, Netanyahu told Modi, “Prime Minister, we’ve been waiting for you a long time, 70 years in fact. The connection between

us is natural, so natural that we might ask, ‘What took so long?’ “Yours is truly a historic visit,” he continued. “It’s the first time an Indian prime minister is visiting Israel. We receive you with open arms. We love India. We love your culture, your history, your democracy. We view you as kindred spirits.” When Modi took to the podium, his words were just as effusive. In Hebrew, the Indian leader announced, “Shalom, I am happy to be here.” He then told the audience in English, “It’s my singular honor to be the first-ever prime minister of India to undertake this groundbreaking visit to Israel,” and he thanked “my friend Prime Minister Netanyahu for the invitation and for receiving me with so much warmth,” promising to build “a strong and resilient partnership with Israel.” “My visit celebrates the strength of centuries-old links between our societies,” he added. “The people of Israel have built a nation on democratic principles. They have nurtured it with hard work and the spirit of innovation. India applauds your achievements.” The Indian prime minister mentioned Netanyahu’s fallen brother, Yoni, who was killed on July 4, 1976 during a raid to free Israeli hostages being held in Entebbe, Uganda, 41 years ago. “Your heroes are an inspiration for the younger generations,” he said. At the airport ceremony Netanyahu said the two countries are establishing a $40 million innovation fund “as a seed for further innovation” and are working together in “water, agriculture, security, energy, many, many other fields.” “It’s said that in Silicon Valley in California, the two most-heard languages are Hindi and Hebrew,” the Israeli prime min-

ister quipped. “Occasionally one hears native English, too.” Before Modi touched down in Israel, both Netanyahu and Modi co-authored an opinion piece hailing the significance of this week’s visit. “The natural partnership between India and Israel, formally elevated 25 years ago to full diplomatic relations, has grown stronger from year to year. The deep connection between our peoples reflects our many similarities in spirit, if not in size,” the two leaders wrote in the piece, which was published in The Times of India and Israel Hayom newspapers. “The Jewish community in India was always welcomed with warmth and respect and never faced any persecution,” Modi and Netanyahu noted. “The Jews of Indian origin in Israel are proud of their heritage and have left an indelible imprint on both societies. Both communities serve as a human bridge between our nations.” An Innovative Leader Modi is a unique leader for the Indian nation. He was not born a Brahmin; as a child, he sold tea alongside his father in a train station. But Modi has risen through the ranks of Indian leadership with a reputation grounded in change and ability; as prime minister since 2014, Modi has worked on economic growth to the extent that today India’s GDP exceeds that of China. He’s also increased inflow of foreign direct investment (FDI) to India. He has generated programmatic reforms of the economy. These reforms are meant to make lasting changes to India’s economic structure, reforms world economic experts have long advised but have never been implemented. The reforms include changing the currency (he’s aiming for a cashless economy), revising laws on bankruptcy, the introduction of a nationwide sales tax, and permitting foreign investors to partic-

ipate in construction projects. Modi has the charisma and cunning to push them through. Even in foreign policy, Modi says, he does not believe in “isms”; he focuses on the motto, “Together with all, development for all.” In doing this, Modi has shifted India’s 50-year-old policy of non-alignment with the world’s military powers. At the same time, Modi has been working to fund essential “public goods,” such as a modern infrastructure network, modern school facilities with well-trained teachers, and state-of-the-art medical facilities even in rural areas. Partnering with the Jewish State So what are Modi’s goals on this historic trip to Israel? Aside from a focus on terrorism and counter-terrorism cooperation, Modi expects to discuss shared challenges like terrorism and hopes Israel will become a technology partner in two of his “flagship” projects: Clean Ganga (the effort to clean the Ganges River) and Smart Cities. He spent three days of talks with Netanyahu in the hope to advance sales and production of missiles, drones, and radar systems under his signature “Make in India” drive. This drive underscores Modi’s vision of a domestic defense industry that relies less on importing arms and more on manufacturing them in India. Modi seeks foreign companies to set up production in India. India and Israel are collaborating on the Barak-8 air defense system, a system built jointly by the two countries. Because India is Israel’s biggest arms market, buying an average of $1 billion in arms a year, Israeli defense firms are adjusting to joint projects with India by collaborating with local factories in India. This past April, the two countries signed an air and missile defense deal worth almost $2 billion, the largest defense contract in Israel’s history. “The two countries see themselves as bulwarks of democracy in a region rife with illiberal leaders,” said CNN New Delhi Bureau Chief Ravi Agrawal. As well as an increased defense relationship, Netanyahu and Modi are expected to announce strategic partnerships in

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home


The Week In News

Going the extra mile!

Moshe Holtzberg, survivor of the Mumbai massacre declaring his intention to become a Chabad Shliach in India

water, agriculture, and space technology. Modi will be speaking of his wishes to expand 26 agriculture expertise centers that Israel set up in 15 Indian states to increase efficient production of produce, from vegetables to mangoes and pomegranates. Modi visited an Israeli farm to see firsthand “precision agriculture” and Israeli agricultural technology at work. Furthermore, he visited water management, treatment, and purification plants to learn water management from the Israelis. Modi sees Israel as a country that was once water-deficient, but now sells water to the Jordanians. There is, as his ambassador to Israel noted, “a lot to learn from Israel.” In fact, since 1992, the number of drip irrigation projects launched by Israeli companies in India has grown from $1 million to more than $1 billion. As Amnon Ofen, director of NaanDanJain Irrigation, said about this agro-revolution, “We are giving holistic solutions and this is what the farmer needs.” His company has been focusing on the small-scale farmer, the farmer with less than an acre of land. Israeli companies, that dominate 50% of the global drip-irrigation market, dominate 75% of the Indian market. In fact, self-motivated farmer groups have been visiting Israel to see how a desert became a center for the most advanced experiments in agriculture. Israel has helped these agriculturalists, and now 15 million Indian farmers benefit from drip irrigation. However, this is only 3% of the overall irrigation in India; other farmers rely on wasteful irrigation methods. Modi, with a more formal government-led partnership, hopes to bring the numbers up from 3% to 20% over the next ten years. Modi arrived in Tel Aviv to address 4000 members of the Indian community of Israel, as well as students of agriculture, chemistry, and biology. Many diamond merchants from Gujarat, a state in Western India, work in Tel Aviv. “I am particularly looking forward to interacting with the large vibrant Indian diaspora in Israel that represents an enduring link between our two peoples,” Modi wrote on Facebook prior to his visit. About 12,000 non-Jewish Indian nationals currently live and work in Israel, as well as some 80,000 Israeli Jews with at least one parent of Indian origin.

Only 5000 Jews remain in India today. Professor Joseph Klafter, president of Tel Aviv University, said, “The India-Israel relationship is poised to become broad, inclusive and influential, and...I am convinced that we can do a great deal more to deepen research ties... Support is especially vital for shared priority fields such as food security, water, precise agriculture, cyber and IoT, biomed and communications. Joint R&D will help drive innovation and enhance the knowledge economies in both countries.” He added, “Our Indian student population at Tel Aviv University has quadrupled over the last few years and each graduate who goes home to India expands and extends our bilateral friendship in an outstanding ripple effect.” Notably, Modi met with ten year old Moshe Holtzberg, whose parents, Gavriel and Rivka, were killed during the November 26, 2008 attacks on the Nariman Chabad House in Mumbai. Modi visited Moshe’s grandparents, Rabbi and Mrs. Shimon Rosenberg, as well as Moshe’s Indian nanny, Sandra Samuels, who saved him during the onslaught. “It’s a huge honor and comes as a pleasant surprise. I am deeply touched. It’s a clear indication that the Indian government cares for the victims of 26/11 terror attack,” Sandra Samuels says. She still visits Moshe twice a week and works at ALEH, a home for special children in Israel. Prime Minister Modi and Netanyahu not only made history by making a special friendship a public occasion, but they forged alliances that will benefit both the people of Israel and the people of India. Interviewed by Israel’s Channel 2 prior to the visit Modi – who began the conversation by saying, “Shalom” and ended it with todah rabah (thank you) – hailed Israel’s growth and development “against the odds,” saying the sheer pace of its progress had “prompted everyone to look at it in amazement… When ‘Israel’ is mentioned, people think of innovation, technology, start-ups, space, agriculture, maximal use of resources. That’s Israel’s fingerprint,” said Modi. “All those things are appropriate to the Indian outlook. All those things cause us to work shoulder-to-shoulder with Israel – to widen our horizons together,” he said. “With your potential and our potential, the sky is the limit.”





Jewish The WeekHistory In News By Rabbi Pini Dunner Rav of Young Israel North Beverly Hills

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

Jewish History

Memoirs Of A Forgotten Rabbi The Troubled Life Of Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ferber

Part VII Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ferber (1883-1966) was a Lithuanian-born Torah scholar who spent fifty years as the spiritual leader of a small community in the West End district of London. In several previous articles Rabbi Dunner has introduced us to Rabbi Ferber’s memoirs, allowing us to glimpse the life of this revered rabbi for the very first time since he began recording it in vivid detail in 1938. This is the fourth excerpt from the memoirs, and continues with the story of Rabbi Ferber’s family and early life experiences. The translation is not a word-for-word rendition of the original Hebrew. Rabbi Dunner has stuck as closely as possible to the original, except where the Rabbinic Hebrew makes an exact translation difficult, or where ambiguities need to be corrected. The material has also been abridged where necessary, or expanded where more details are required. My late brother’s children After my brother, Rabbi Eliezer Lipman, passed away, his four younger children – Dovber, Moshe, Eidel, and Yaakov – moved in with my parents so that they could receive a proper Jewish upbringing, and my father fully supported them, even though he was experiencing financial difficulties in his old age. The children moved in after my sister-in-law, Chaya Gitel, married again on the advice of her brother-in-law, Rabbi Yitzchak Sapir, who had replaced my brother as the rabbi of Koznitza after he passed away. My brother’s eldest son, David, was a wonderful boy - bright and sharp, a Torah scholar, and so polite and well behaved. He did not move in with my parents. His mother sent him to Volkovisk, in the Suwalk region, to study at the yeshiva there. One day, as he was sitting at the table of the shochet with whom he ate his meals, he suddenly keeled over and died. It was just before the month of Kislev, in 1896. Everyone assumed David’s passing was caused by the pain and depression he suffered after his father’s death, compounded by the anguish he felt at the sale of his father’s precious library, and the loss of his father’s manuscripts, which were neglected by people who were unaware of their true value. David was treated very respectfully after his passing; Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ma-Yofis, the distinguished rabbi of Volkovisk, personally delivered a stirring eulogy at his funeral. When we eventually heard the terrible news of young David’s death, we were all overcome with grief. What a tragedy! He was definitely the finest of all my brother’s children – such a magnificent boy in every way. He was only 18 when he died, and I always make a point of mentioning his name together with the names of my parents

and other family members when reciting memorial prayers. Meanwhile, after spending some time at my parents’ home, the other children were sent to Texas. It was all the fault of my sister-in-law, who was the source of much family anguish. She had married a wealthy, respectable man from Grodno called Isaac Present, but as a result of the marriage her children were all sent away. The new husband inverted the verse (Devarim 22:7) “send the mother away, and take the children” – instead, he sent the children away, and took their mother. At the time, I was still young and foolish, and I wrote him an extremely rude letter in which I indelicately quoted the verse from Bereishit (20:3) that records G-d saying to the King of the Philistines “You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken…” It was a terrible thing to have done, particularly because - to my great embarrassment - he died shortly afterwards. In any event, my sister-in-law married a third time – but soon afterwards her third husband also died, so she went off to join her children in Texas. It was too late, and she derived no joy whatsoever from her children. They had grown up without a father and mother, and had consequently drifted very far away from their late father’s ways. After some time in Texas my sister-in-law also passed away. Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Orlianski – a remarkable public speaker and noted author, who as a young man had been a student of my late brother and a frequent guest at my sister-inlaw’s table – traveled all the way from New York to deliver a eulogy. After she died, the children sent me some money to publish a small selection of my late brother’s writings that I had managed to rescue with the help of his brother-in-law, Rabbi Sapir. Meanwhile, I am glad to say that my brother has not been forgotten. After his death, some members of his community paid to have a small tomb structure built over his grave, and whenever something bad happens in Koznitza they visit his graveside and pray there. Even all these years later they still sing his praises, referring to him as the “tzaddik” (righteous one), and they continue to revere his memory. Life at home after my brother’s passing My brother’s death at the prime of his life took a terrible toll on our family. We felt his absence with every step we took. We had lost our pride and glory. Only my brother David and I remained at home with our parents, and we were filled with sorrow and sadness. My father was physically weakened by our brother’s death – firstly, because he had lost his son, but also because he initially had to take care of the young orphans, and he was no youngster. He was also short of money, as he was no longer able to work and earn as much money as he had when he was

younger. Despite all these problems, my parents continued to host Torah scholars for all the meals at our home, and labored unbelievably hard to raise my older brother, David, and me, in the proper Torah way. My mother personally took me to yeshiva each day, and from one yeshiva to another, and I can remember her taking me to study with a teacher called Rabbi Avremchik, and another one called Rabbi Leibchik Cherness, who was an incredible Torah scholar, the father of Rabbi Yaakov Dovid Luria, the current rabbi of Glasgow, Scotland. My mother also took me to study at the private yeshiva of a great rabbi, Rabbi Tzvi Hirschel Levitan. At Rabbi Levitan’s yeshiva there was a fantastic teacher, a devout and saintly man called Rabbi Shaul Porush, who had a profound impact on me, and particularly on my public speaking ability. He was a first-class preacher, effortlessly fluent in scripture and Midrashic narratives, and with an encyclopedic knowledge of the great homiletic rabbinic works. He literally had a sermon ready to deliver for every occasion. Rabbi Shaul was a fiery opponent of Jews who had abandoned their faith, against whom he would rail mercilessly in his public speeches. But on every other subject Rabbi Shaul was an uplifting, inspirational speaker. He recognized my unique homiletic talent, and he even included some of my ideas in his writings, as I discovered after he died, when the manuscripts came into the possession of Rabbi Joseph Levitan, Rabbi Tzvi Hirschel’s son. Rabbi Shaul was a tall man with a long flowing beard, and he had a very strong presence. He was totally destitute, and apparently nobody had ever bothered to concern themselves with his material needs, until one day he unexpectedly became ill, and died shortly afterwards. It was the Summer of 1896, and I don’t think he was even sixty years old, despite the fact that his beard was more white than black. Rabbi Shaul’s death really upset me – he had loved and favored me so much as his student. We had often taken long walks together, and I had so enjoyed listening to him share his wonderful Torah ideas while we walked. He had a large, respectable funeral, and was eulogized by the rabbi of Slabodka, Rabbi Moshe Danishevsky. I distinctly remember what Rabbi Danishevsky said that day. He began by quoting the verse in Kohelet (7:2): “It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting.” “Does that mean visiting a house of mourning is a good thing?” he asked, rhetorically. “How would that make any sense?” Suddenly he cried out: “We have had more than enough of the ‘good’ of visiting mourning houses! We can’t handle this abundance of ‘good’ anymore! We recently lost the patriarch of

The marriage in 1930 of Rabbi Yitzchak Rudnick (19041975) to Yetta Gerber, daughter of Rabbi Pinchas Yaakov Gerber of London. Rabbi Rudnick’s brother was married to Rabbi Ferber’s niece in Paris, and Rabbi Ferber was the “shadchan” for this couple. He can be seen standing between the bride and her father, to the left of the photo.

Rabbi Ferber’s older sister, Feiga Beila Flaum, who moved to New York to be with her children, but left for Palestine when it became clear she could no longer positively influence them. She was a devout lady who devoted her life to charitable causes and strengthening Torah institutions

Israel, Rabbi Yitzchak Elchanan Spektor, and we visited his house of mourning. Then we lost Rabbi Menachem Shraga, the rabbi of Ferman, who came to Kovno for medical treatment and ended up dying here, and we had to visit his mourning house. Then there was Rabbi Yehoshua Yosef Preil, also here for medical treatment, and he died too – and we went to visit his mourning house. And now this! Enough with the mourning houses; we simply can’t handle so much ‘good’!” Kovno’s itinerant preacher, Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Hacohen, gave the next eulogy, and then it was the turn of Rabbi Shabbetai Marim, the community rabbi in Slabodka, who based his eulogy on the verse from Isaiah (57:1) “the righteous are taken away because of the bad.” “This verse,” he began, “can either be interpreted to mean that the righteous are spared from seeing evil in the future, or that they are taken from us as penance for evil in the world.” Rabbi Marim paused and looked around, and then began sobbing uncontrollably, finally crying out: “I say that in this case it means that the righteous man died to be spared from his dreadful situation, from his poverty and destitution.”

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Title page of "Divrei Eliezer" by Rabbi Eliezer Lipman Ferber. Rabbi Ferber published his late brother's work as an appendix to his own book, after his brother's children sent him money to help pay for the publication

He compared the loss of Rabbi Shaul to a rich man who has lost his wealth and is forced sell everything – his home, his land, his furniture – until eventually he has nothing left to sell besides for his Torah scroll. Rabbi Marim was crying bitterly. “We have lost everything,” he wailed, “we have descended to the depths, and now we have been forced to sell our Torah scroll, the righteous Rabbi Shaul – woe is to us!” My parents My greatest regret of all is that I failed to honor my parents properly with financial support. When I was young and single, I was totally immersed in my Torah studies, and was fully supported by them; I had nothing of my own. Afterwards, when I was newly married, I was not able to support them either. Seven months after our wedding my mother arrived at our house. She was already widowed, as my father had died, and it quickly became clear that she wanted to move in and live with us permanently. I was very concerned that if she did move in, conflict would inevitably erupt between her and my wife, and so, despite her reluctance to go, she left and went back home to Slabodka. Only after arriving in London in 1911 was I finally able to support my mother properly. But it was too late. She died in December that year, and was buried in Slabodka cemetery. The only one in our family who was able to take care of our mother in those final years was my righteous sister, Feiga Beila, and she dutifully fulfilled the Jewish obligation of honoring a parent. My father predeceased my mother after suffering from debilitating diabetes. In those days the medical profession did not know too much about diabetes, and he died on 12 Adar, 1906. May G-d in His compassion take care of their souls under the shadow of His wings, and may they find tranquility in Heaven, together with the souls of all righteous men and women, until the end of days. And may G-d forgive me for not having honored my parents properly, and give me the opportunity to atone. My parents’ graves were tragically lost in the aftermath of the Great War, when the local government destroyed part of the cemetery in Slabodka, which means that I am not even able to visit their graves to seek their forgiveness.

My brother David We also had another tragedy at my parents’ home, and it still haunts me. It totally devastated my parents, and caused them enormous grief in their old age. Soon after the passing of my illustrious brother Rabbi Eliezer Lipman, my brother David became unwell. He was two years older than me – a fine young man and a diligent Torah student, very sincere and devout, and extremely kind hearted. But at the age of about twenty years old he suddenly went into a severe depression. Despite the efforts of numerous doctors, and the prescription of countless medications, there seemed to be no way to cure him. This new tragedy completely shattered my father. Everybody said that David’s depression had been triggered by the death of our older brother, and it got progressively worse. At first he said he was troubled because he could not find a suitable study partner. Then he was unable to get any satisfaction from his Talmud studies -- he constantly felt that he was missing something, and that his learning wasn’t good enough. After that he became very anxious about getting married, and that he would need to find a wife before he had finished his rabbinic studies. And he was constantly worried that nothing he was doing had any purpose. He was totally consumed by all of these anxieties, and ended up becoming a complete recluse, laid up at our parents home for five years in a very agitated state, until, after my father died, he was forcibly removed to a mental hospital in Nowowiejska near Vilna, where he died in 1907, after having endured his dreadful illness for many years. What a waste of a precious soul – he was such a fine character, so G-d-fearing, a lover of Torah, and even an author of Torah homilies – I even found a short manuscript of his that he had wanted to publish. David was the first person to encourage me to publish my commentary on the Torah, and to call it “Kerem Hatzvi”. When I was just a boy he would urge me to record all the Torah ideas I heard in writing, so that in the future I could include them in my publications. He was such a diligent Talmud student – if only someone could have cured him, he would certainly have developed into a very great scholar. What a terrible tragedy that he was taken before his time – an irreplaceable loss. I still have a set of ten Torah books that he bought with his own hard-earned money, and he wrote his name in them, and I have made sure to mention him a few times in my books, so that his memory will never be forgotten. My sister Rivka; my brother Pesach My beloved sister Rivka was a very distinguished woman. Her husband died young, and left her with a family of young children. She brought them up on her own. After I moved to London in 1911, I supported her financially to the best of my ability. She lived in a place called Aleksotas, near Kovno. Then she became sick with typhus, after which the war broke out, and even though she was extremely sick, they evacuated her deep into Russia and she died on the journey. Her children were scattered all over the place, with neither a mother nor father, and I tried my best to support them with my limited resources. One of her daughters still lives in Kovno. She was widowed at a young age, and I send her money. Another one of her daughters married the son of my relative Rabbi Shmuel Eliezer Halevi

Bukantz, the chief rabbi of Helsinki, Finland, who later moved to Jerusalem, where he died in 1935. That daughter now lives in New York. Two of Rivka’s children live in Paris, and from time to time they send me letters. One of them, a daughter, is married to a man with the last name Rudnick. His brother, Rabbi Yitzchak Rudnick, lives in London, and is married to the daughter of my friend Rabbi Pinchas Yaakov Gerber. In fact, I was the one who suggested the match that resulted in their marriage. Sadly neither of the Rudnick brothers has had any children. Another one of my siblings, Pesach Ferber, died in New York in 1936, at the age of 75. He was the next one in the family after my oldest brother, Rabbi Eliezer Lipman. He had a dye business, which suited our surname “Ferber”, which means “dyer” in Yiddish. For many years he lived at my parents home together with his family. When he became much older he moved to New York to be together with his children who had moved there. His son, Maurice Ferber, is a silversmith living in Paris, and he has a store there that sells silver objects. The rest of his children live in America. Pesach’s wife was Chaya Rivka. Her father was a G-d-fearing man called Reb Yisrael, whom I knew very well – he was a gravestone engraver by profession. Remarkably, he had engraved the text on his own gravestone, only leaving out the day, the month, and the year – and I actually saw it while he was still alive.

quickly became very successful. Despite the fact that he was running a profitable business, he regularly gave well-attended community Torah classes and public discourses, and devoted a lot of his time to Torah study. He also married off all his daughters to Torah scholars. After the Great War my brother fell on hard times. His son-in-law, Rabbi Yosef, together with my brother’s daughter and grandchildren, were stuck in Russia at the mercy of the awful Soviet government and unable to leave. My brother’s only son was unable to communicate by speech, only in writing, which was a tremendous strain on his financial resources, and very draining emotionally. On a number of occasions my brother reached out to me for help, and I helped him as best I could. During the war my brother also lost his wife, a woman of exceptional intelligence and wisdom – if anything, she was even brighter than he was. My brother remarried, but his luck seems to have run out. He lost the money he had saved for his youngest daughter’s dowry, after having invested it with a wealthy man called Mr Nurik, who turned out to be a swindler. My brother asked me for financial help, but with my limited resources there was only so much I could do. My sister, Feiga Beila Flaum from Jerusalem, helped him marry off his daughter, providing him with hundreds of British pounds for her dowry.

My brother Rabbi Mordechai Ferber My other brother, Rabbi Mordechai Ferber from Shavel, was a great rabbi, famous for his Torah scholarship and piety. In his youth he studied at “Reb Abba Chatzkel’s” private school in Slabodka, the same as me. He became an expert on the “Yoreh Deah” section of “Shulchan Aruch”. My father fully supported him through his studies, and when he was old enough the great rabbinic luminary, Rabbi Yoizel Horowitz, founder and leader of the Novardok yeshiva network, set my brother up with the daughter of the renowned Kabbalist, Rabbi Shlomo Eliashiv. Although my father did not seek any promises of financial support for his son, as he was delighted for my brother to be marrying into such a distinguished family, Rabbi Eliashiv insisted on giving my brother a dowry of 500 rubles. Most of the money came from one of his wealthy supporters, a man from Berlin called Obadiah (Emil) Lachman, who gifted 450 rubles to every one of the rabbi’s children when they got married. Because he had enough money to support himself after the wedding, my brother continued his studies at the Kelm yeshiva for a few years, under the guidance of Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziv, its founder, who was known as the “Alter (Elder) of Kelm”. While he was in Kelm my brother also became acquainted with Rabbi Yehuda Leib Ziegler, a man renowned for his piety and saintliness. Rabbi Ziegler never took a paid public position in Kelm, but he was nonetheless highly revered, known to all as Reb Leib “Hasid” (the pious), despite insisting that he was plain “Mr Ziegler”. He formed a very strong bond with my brother, and when his wife died asked my brother to deliver the eulogy at the funeral. My brother was ordained by Rabbi Tzvi Yaakov Oppenheim of Kelm, and Rabbi Moshe Shmuel Shapira of Kurshan. He also received ordination from Rabbi Shimon Shaima Luria, the rabbi of Shavel. But he was not interested in securing a rabbinic position, preferring to remain a businessman and support himself with the profits. My father helped him get started, and he

My sister, Feiga Beila Flaum My sister Feiga Beila Flaum was older than me by a few years, and far greater than me in righteousness and piety. Initially she endured tremendous poverty and hardship, as her husband was a simpleton, unable to support them both. My father helped them out for years by providing them with a rent-free house to live in. When her children reached adulthood they immigrated to the United States, and after a few years she followed them there, with the intention of strengthening Torah and Judaism in America. She was a very persuasive woman, and influenced many of the women she got to know to set up organizations that would focus on strengthening commitment to Torah and Jewish life. But ultimately she realized that her own children were too set in their ways, and were never going to be fully observant Jews – so she left them and went to the Holy Land, where she worked with everything she had, and convinced others to do everything they could, to support Torah and those who studied it. My sister was particularly supportive of the “Beis Yosef” Novardok yeshivas, as she knew Novardok Yeshiva’s founder, the illustrious Rabbi Yoizel Horowitz, who was a close family friend. She became like a mother to the boys studying at the Novardok yeshiva in Israel, looking after their every need. Pinchas Grayevski, who published numerous works about modern settlers in the Land of Israel, published a photo of my sister together with details about her life in one of his books, and described her many great deeds and achievements supporting Torah in the Holy Land. When she became widowed, I advised her to marry Rabbi Yosef Sharshevski of Slonim, who had moved to the Holy Land. She married him, and takes care of his financial needs, allowing him to sit and study Torah full time in peace and tranquility.



The Week In News

McCain Coping with Diagnosis U.S. Senator and former presidential candidate John McCain received a devastating diagnosis last week. His doctors discovered a brain tumor and diagnosed McCain, 80, with primary glioblastoma. Doctors discovered the tumor during a surgery to remove a blood clot last Friday at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix. Doctors discovered the clot during a routine physical exam that immediately led to the surgery. According to the American Brain Tumor Association, glioblastoma is a particularly aggressive tumor that forms in the tissue of the brain and spinal cord. McCain’s doctors reported that he was always responsible about his well-checks and scheduled exams. He gets skin checks every four months due to his history of skin cancer. In 2000, McCain was diagnosed with invasive melanoma. He also

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had three other scares in 1993, 2000, and 2002, which were all malignant melanoma and all were declared Stage 0. As per usual, McCain arrived at his early morning appointment, Friday before 8 a.m. A doctor who had treated McCain for the last decade reported that he appeared to be in good health, although he did mention feeling fatigued but he was quick to blame that on his demanding travel schedule. He also mentioned that occasionally he felt foggy and not as sharp as he typically is. In addition, McCain reported having intermittent double vision. These symptoms and doctor intuition prompted a CT scan. By the time the results came back, McCain had left the clinic. He was asked to return immediately for an MRI, which then led to the late afternoon surgery. McCain was in the ICU by Friday evening and discharged on Saturday. He is currently recovering at his Arizona home surrounded by family. Following the surgery, McCain’s office released a statement saying that he is recovering “amazingly well.” “The news of my father’s illness has affected every one of us in the McCain Family,” tweeted Meghan McCain on Wednesday. “It won’t surprise you to learn that in all this, the one of us who is most confident and calm is my father.” This weekend, Meghan McCain shared a photo of her and her father on a hike on Instagram with the caption, “Amazing hike

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with Dad @SenJohnMcCain this morning. Thank you all for your best wishes!”

Huge Bitcoin Heist Revealed

Police in Bucks County, Pa. stumbled upon a $40 million Bitcoin scam in a very unlikely way. According to federal court documents, the Northampton Township Police Department received complaints about Theodore Price from his friend’s parents that he had stolen their laptops. Once the police arrived at the home of Janine and Steve Aversa and interviewed the couple’s daughter, she told them that Price had been inside her parents’ house while they were on vacation and she let them into Price’s apartment. Inside Price’s apartment, police found one of the stolen laptops as well as stolen

credit cards and personal information of many deceased individuals. Police also found “multiple thumb drives and 105 pages of alphanumeric code,” according to the affidavit. The pages were brought to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, as it was that suspected that the numbers were Bitcoin accounts. Police were also able to trace Price to a stolen necklace that was taken from the Aversas’ home and hocked at a local pawn shop. When confronted with the evidence, Price admitted to having written a program that allowed him to steal over $40 million in bitcoins, an electronic currency. “Price stated that people hire him to do things for their companies,” court documents state. “Price elaborated stating he would write Trojan software to penetrate network systems.” He also told investigators “he had been hired by numerous foreign governments to develop penetration software.” “Price’s software recognizes the similar characters in another wallet and replaces it with Price’s acquired wallet,” according to the complaint. “Because the Bitcoin wallet address is a legitimate address, the user does not realize that Bitcoin transaction is being diverted into a wallet other than theirs.” One of the hacked accounts had $34.6 million in it and others had many millions as well. If the claims are true, the scam would be one of the top five largest digital

The Week In News product architect of Tesla Inc, maker of luxurious electric cars. He is also cofounder of PayPal, the online payment company. Musk has an estimated net worth of $15.7 billion.

NYC to DC in 29 Minutes

Christie: Most Unliked Govr

Sitting on a beach and then telling your constituents that you didn’t get any sun that day will not earn you any points from them. A recent poll of New Jersey residents shows that a full sixty-nine percent of them disapprove of their governor, Chris Christie, making him the least popular governor in the United States over the last 20 years – and the least popular in New Jersey history. To be fair, twenty-five percent of New Jersey residents gave Christie a thumbs up. But those twenty-five aren’t going to win him any elections. Not that he cares; he says he won’t be running again. On the other side of the favorability scale, Charlie Baker of Massachusetts and Larry Hogan of Maryland are the U.S.’s most popular governors. Both of them are Republicans in deeply blue states. Baker, a moderate praised for his ability to work across the aisle, has managed to maintain very high popularity in a state where just 10% of voters are registered Republicans. Sixty-eight percent of voters in his state approve of the job he’s doing. Wyoming Governor Matt Mead, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard – all Republicans – round out the five most popular governors in the United States. Governor Christie is not alone in his misery. The governor of Kansas, Republican Sam Brownback, is the second-least popular governor in the country. Sixty-six percent of voters in his state don’t approve of him. Democrat Dan Malloy of Connecticut has a sixty-four percent disapproval rate; in Oklahoma, fifty-five percent disapprove of Republican Mary Fallin; and fifty-two percent of voters don’t like the job Republican Rick Snyder of Michigan is doing.

CIA Head Blasts NYT The New York Times came under fire



it's Shidduch Time


A 29 minute commute to work ain’t that bad by anyone’s standard, although it is limiting. Billionaire innovator Elon Musk is looking to expand horizons for those in the workforce. Musk claims to have received “verbal” government approval to build a futuristic underground rail system that will transport riders from New York to Washington, D.C., in under a half an hour. “Just received verbal govt approval for The Boring Company to build an underground NY-Phil-Balt-DC Hyperloop,” Musk tweeted out on Friday. He added that the system would ferry passengers from “city center to city center in each case, with up to a dozen or more entry/exit elevators in each city.” “Verbal” government approval is vague, and Musk still faces many obstacles. His project will also require major political maneuverings and an extraordinary amount of money. Flight times between NYC to Washington, D.C., are about 43 minutes. Keep in mind, when flying in and out of big city airports, it takes time to get through security and if you are checking bags you need to allow for even more time. An Amtrak ride runs about three hours and 20 minutes on average, while driving takes over four hours between the two metropolises. Musk’s bold statements come a few months after he formed a venture called The Boring Co. to manufacture faster and more efficient tunnel-boring machines. This new initiative is supposedly a response to frustration with the notorious California traffic that Musk deals with. He recently expressed his dream of building a tunnel from his office to the airport in Los Angeles. He also said he wants to build a network of tunnels throughout the city. His solution to the growing problem is a network of underground tunnels ferrying self-driving cars at high speeds. Next up on his to-do list is dreaming up a hyper-loop from Los Angeles to San Francisco and one in Texas. Musk, 46, is the founder and CEO of SpaceX, an aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company and



currency heists of all time. Federal agents are investigating the Bitcoin theft further before finalizing the charges against Price. They will present their findings to a federal grand jury.



AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home



at Amuka With Tehillim Kollel On Tu B’Av



t was like riding a roller-coaster. Within seconds, your orientation changes from up to down and then back up and down again. At 27, I had been seeking a shidduch for a very long time. And so many times, I had thought, “This is it! He is the one!!” and then… it fell apart. Why couldn’t I find my bashert? I had been to all the shadchanim and decided to turn to the ultimate Shadchan- Hashem! I signed up for membership with Tehillim Kollel, who I knew employed sincere and dedicated men to daven for the klal, at one of their daily

locations, where Tehillim Kollel representatives daven in an established place each and every day: Amuka, the Kever of Yonasan ben Uziel, renowned for being a holy site for bringing about shidduchim. I then continued my hishtadlus, trying to seek out new shadchanim that I had not yet contacted. I am ecstatic to share that my personal roller coaster ride with Shidduchim is over. A few months after signing up, I became engaged to my wonderful chassan! The ultimate Shadchan came through for me! And thankfully, the roller coaster ride is over.

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The Week In News from CIA Director Mike Pompeo after they disclosed the name of an undercover officer in charge of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Iran operations. Pompeo said the decision to publish the operative’s name was “unconscionable.” The Times said that they decided to publish the name because it had been previously published by other news sources and the operative is “leading an important new administration initiative against Iran.” In a written comment, the Times said that although the CIA had asked that they not publish the operative’s name, he is “a senior official who runs operations from Langley, not out in the field. He is the architect of the drone program, one of the government’s most significant paramilitary programs. The American public has a right to know who is making life-or-death decisions in its name.” In the same press conference, Pompeo ripped Iran, saying that their obvious attempts to gain a foothold in Syria were an example of how Tehran is trying to become the “kingpin” of the Middle East. He also said that Iran’s compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal is like a “bad tenant bouncing checks.”

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

The Purring Politician

Last week, the mayor of the town of Talkeetna, Alaska, passed away. He was 20. But Stubbs was no ordinary politician. He was the honorary feline mayor of the town that boasts 900 citizens. On Saturday, Stubbs’ owners announced his demise. “Stubbs lived for 20 years and 3 months,” the family wrote. “He was a trooper until the very last day of his life; meowing at us throughout the day to pet him or to come sit on the bed with him and let him snuggle and purr for hours in our lap. Thank you, Stubbs,

for coming into our lives for the past 31 months; you are a remarkable cat and we will dearly miss you. We loved the time we were allowed to spend with you.” Mayor Stubbs went to bed on Thursday night and just never woke up. He had been the purring politician in town since 1998, when he won the election in a write-in campaign. There is no human mayor in Talkeetna. With Stubbs’ passing, the town is left mayor-less. It’s possible, though, that Stubbs’ kitten may fill the void. “Amazingly, Denali has the exact personality as Stubbs,” Stubbs’ family wrote of the kitten. “He loves the attention, he’s like a little puppy when he’s around people. We couldn’t have asked for a better understudy than Denali – he really has followed in Stubbs’ paw prints in just about everything.” Sounds purr-fect.

Coffee in Your Sleep Wake up and smell the coffee. Well, if you had coffee in your sheets that would be pretty easy, no? Introducing Ettitude’s coffee-infused bedsheets. The bamboo-based yarn in the sheets is mixed with coffee yarn to – according to Ettitude – give you a great

night’s sleep. Ettitude says that the repurposed coffee grounds in the fabric result in sheets that wick away moisture and eliminate odors better than regular cotton ones. Plus, the sheets are recycling precious coffee grounds that normally just get thrown away. That should definitely make you sleep better. So what do you want to sleep on tonight? There’s an array of colors to choose from including mocha, latte and strawberry frappe. When you wake up, though, you’re going to have to brew yourself a cup of joe to get you started in the morning. These sheets may have coffee in them, but they don’t smell – or taste – like the real thing.

Phelps Loses to a “Shark”

Michael Phelps won America’s heart

The Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

@TierraSur805 – many times over – last year when he garnered five gold medals and one silver at the 2016 Games in Rio. This year, during “Shark Week,” the Discovery Channel aired a special: “Phelps vs. Shark: The Battle for Ocean Supremacy.” Fans looked forward to seeing their swimming star battle it out with a real shark. According to promos, “The great white shark [will] meet the greatest of all time.” Would he survive with all limbs intact? Who would rule the ocean waters? But when viewers tuned in on Sunday night, they left disappointed – disappointed because Phelps and the “great white one” were not racing each other in real time. Phelps really raced against a simulator, matching the shark’s momentum. In the end, though, the 23-time gold medalist wasn’t fast enough to beat the ocean predator. Phelps came in two seconds short against the beast.

CPR Saves Lives

We know that CPR can save a person’s life. When immediate assistance is needed, first responders can help keep a person alive. David Knowles, a retired nurse, knows this all too well. He was saved by one of the students in the CPR class he was giving. Four months ago, Knowles, 77, was starting to give a CPR class to people in his local church. Suddenly, he fell to the floor. When asked if he was all right, he told his student, “I’m not feeling all right at all.” He knew he was going into cardiac arrest. First and foremost Knowles had the wherewithal to let the students know that this was not a demonstration. Being that this was also their first day taking the course, he had to let them know how to save him. Luckily for Knowles, one of his students, Karol Chew, was taking the class as a refresher course. He told her to call an ambulance and asked her to tell his wife as well. He had the presence of mind to caution her to tell his wife not to run because she just had her gallbladder taken out. He also told her to take out his false teeth. “I was beginning to get a bit foggy,” Knowles explained. Even so, he tried to stay awake so he could help Karol perform CPR. She ended up doing CPR, saving his life. Knowles doesn’t remember much from the incident. “I woke up two and half weeks later,” he said. He had been in a medically induced coma because the damage to his heart was serious. “It was quite severe. I was more dead than alive when they got me

into hospital.” Looking back, Knowles acknowledges how amazing it is that he was able to get the help he needed. “It really got bizarre, the whole thing,” Knowles said. “I feel a lot better,” he added.

$1.8M for a Bag of Moon Dust

Looking for a bargain? I have a bottle of air from the Holy Land I can sell you. Think that’s funny? A bag with specks of dust from the moon just sold for $1.8 million. The canvas bag, which was used by Neil Armstrong to collect samples during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969, sold for just over $1.8 million at an auction in New York last Thursday. Lest you think that the purchaser overpaid for a bag of dust, the price was less than the $2 million to $4 million auctioneer Sotheby’s thought it would fetch. Still it was 1,821 times the price ($995) collector Nancy Carlson paid for it just two years ago. The original purpose of the bag was only discovered when Carlson bought it in an online auction of assets seized by the U.S. Marshals Service. Carlson then sent it to NASA, which identified the bag as the one used by Armstrong. It also confirmed that the bag still contained lunar dust. A legal battle then followed. According to the U.S. District Court in Kansas, NASA wanted to keep hold of the bag, arguing that the artifact was unique and should never have been sold to a private collector. The bag had ended up in the hands of the U.S. Marshals Service as part of property seized from a space museum president, who was convicted of fraud and stealing from the museum. It was found in his garage but misidentified. According to the Kansas court documents, the U.S. government said that “no one, including the United States, realized that this bag was used on Apollo 11 and was an historically important item.” The court ruled that Carlson bought the bag lawfully and ordered NASA to return it to her. Armstrong collected roughly 500 grams of dust and 12 rock fragments as he walked through an area of the moon known as The Sea of Tranquility.

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Parenting The Week In News

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

Proactive Parenting: What Should I do? Sara Teichman, Psy D

Dear Dr T., I have a problem with my two-and-a-half year old. He is always hurting his one year old brother. Even if I am playing with them both, the older one may just take a toy and throw it at the baby. I am writing to you as a last resort though I don’t know if you can help me. I certainly have asked many people – parents, siblings, friends, and even a rebbitzen in my community. People say all kind of things: from just looking away to punishing with time-out or a potch. Nothing feels right to me, but honestly I just don’t know what to do. I know I have to teach him to stop but I don’t have a clue how. What should I do? Mimi Dear Mimi, This is one of those times when I wish I had some magic to make this all go away. Short of that, some fool-proof idea would do, as well. However, this is one of those very complex situations that does not lend itself to an easy answer. But, understanding your children – their developmental level, feelings, behavior, motives, and abilities – will go a long way in helping you develop some strategies for success. Let’s begin by looking at your older child. I’m sure it’s no news to you that he is jealous – or at least disturbed – by the baby. Look at it from his point of view: For eighteen months, he was king – and then this usurper came along. Though I would imagine that you work hard at continuing

to give the older one lots of attention, and probably interact with the baby mostly out of your older child’s vision, your child knows the truth. He sees that he is no longer the only focus of the parents’ attention, and he doesn’t know what to make of that. Now, at two-and-a-half, your child probably does not have the verbal ability to tell you what he is feeling. In all likelihood, he himself is unaware and confused by his thoughts and feelings. So when he feels bad and needs to express it, he shows you how he feels by lashing out at that which bothers him – the baby. As the behaviorists are wont to say, “All behavior is communication.” It’s our job to teach our child another language. However, we should never confuse

understanding with excusing. In other words, understanding why the twoand-a-half year old hits does not make that behavior okay. Aggressive behavior is harmful to both of the children. The older child may learn that “:might makes right,” and the baby may learn to see the world – and the people in it – as bad and menacing. Obviously, such an unhealthy world view impacts on your baby’s ability to develop trust, a key ingredient in mental health. So, though ignoring is a basic principle in chinuch, you cannot allow yourself to look away in this particular situation. Obviously, you want to teach your child a different bag of tricks, but the question is how? This is the tricky part. Though your child may very well have the cognitive ability to understand that hitting is bad, he does not have the impulse control to stop himself. Learning to control our impulses is a lifelong process – anyone who is faced with that favorite dessert can attest to that. It is a skill that is certainly not mastered by age two. So, many a mother will say, “But he knows not to hit the baby!” without figuring in the other piece – that he is just too young to act consistently on this knowledge. What I would recommend here is a twopronged approach: positive reinforcement and shemirah. Here’s why. Though punishment may stop a behavior, it doesn’t really teach behavior. Behavior needs to be slowly shaped, and the most effective way to do that is by positive reinforcement. We all want to do what feels good to us; so when a behavior is rewarded, it is likely to be repeated. You might begin by modeling how you touch the baby softly. Take your child’s arm and help him do the same. Choose a phrase

that you will use consistently like “gentle hands.” Now at every opportunity do this exercise with your child. And, here is the key: give some positive reinforcement each time your child follows the drill. Positive reinforcement can be either tangible – a sticker, prize, nosh – or intangible – praise, highfive, or hug. Eventually, your child will feel good about “gentle hands” because of its positive association, and you can begin to taper the rewards. I do want to caution you that this is a long process and requires consistent input from you. The key to positive reinforcement is consistency and patience. In the meantime, there is no substitute for shemirah. Until your child can be trusted with the baby, it is your responsibility to supervise and ensure the baby’s safety. Whether this means separating the two, hiring help, or your constant presence, the physical and emotional safety of your children is your primary concern. Obviously, this puts a tremendous burden on you, the mother, but safety is non-negotiable. Chinuch habanim is not simple – or easy. But, rest assured that your dedication to your children’s protection – through shemirah and positive reinforcement – will not be wasted or lost on your children as they grow into adulthood. The Book Nook: To a small child, the world is an exciting but sometimes frightening and unstable place. In The Magic Years, Selma Fraiberg takes the reader into the mind of the child, showing how he confronts the world and learns to cope with it. With great warmth and perception, she discusses the problems at each stage of development and reveals the qualities – above all, the quality of understanding – that can provide the right answer at critical moments. 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

AUGUST 3, 2017 | The Jewish Home

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