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Parsha Parah, Vayakhel-Pekudei • March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 • Luach page 18 • Torah columns pages 18–19• Vol 17, No 11

America relates to Israel,” describing President Trump as the “greatest friend that Israel has ever had in the White House.” “Seventy years from Truman to Trump. How blessed we are to be here today,” Friedman said. Vice President Pence said the U.S. was continuing to prepare a plan for Middle East peace. “Any peace will require compromise, but the United States will never compromise the security of the state of Israel,” he said. On Iran, he warned that unless the “nuclear deal is fixed in the coming months,” the U.S. would withdraw from it “immediately.” Senator Charles Schumer said a looming problem for Israel is that “too many younger Americans don’t know the history” that explains why Israel must be on constant alert. He promised that “as long as Hashem breathes air into my lungs, I will fight to protect the Jewish people and the Jewish state of Israel.” INSIDE: Speeches by Prime Minister Netanyahu, Vice President Pence, Ambassador Haley, and Senator Schumer (pages 16–17); Embattled at home, Bibi’s a hero at AIPAC (p. 9); Frum Jews at confab, and Trump may travel to embassy opening (p. 8).

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Long Islanders at AIPAC conference lobby Capitol Hill By The Jewish Star Long Islanders were among the 18,000 pro-Israel advocates — including nearly 4,000 students — who massed in Washington this week for the annual AIPAC Policy Conference. Many shuls, yeshivot and day schools sent delegates who recharged their Zionist batteries and then spent Tuesday lobbying their representatives on Capitol Hill. On Monday night, an adoring crowd greeted a communal favorite — United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley — with a standing ovation. “When I come to AIPAC, I am with friends. In the United Nations, we sometimes don’t have many friends,” she said. “We will continue to demand that Israel not be treated like some sort of temporary, provisional entity,” Haley said. “The U.N.’s bias against Israel has long undermined peace by encouraging an illusion that Israel will just simply go away. Israel’s not going away. When the world recognizes that, then peace becomes possible.” The U.S. Ambassador to Israel, Five Towner David Friedman, said “a fundamental shift” was underway “in how

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Students from HANC HS (above) and HALB’s Stella K. Abraham HS for Girls were among several Long Island schools whose students participated at the AIPAC Policy Conference and lobbied on Capitol Hill on Tuesday.

Considering Morocco’s tasty Passover traditions

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Moroccan Jews in synagogue in Marrakesh last year.

By Natasha Cooper-Benisty The seders of my adult life are quite different than those I experienced in my youth. The main reason for this is that I am married to a Moroccan Israeli who has his own rich traditions from which to draw. Early in our marriage, my husband experienced his first Ashkenazic seders at my parents’ home. However, once we decided that we were ready to host our own seders, we happily merged customs from both of our backgrounds to create our special family experience. Perhaps the most unique Moroccan custom of our seder occurs early on when the head of the household — in my husband’s family, his mother would do this — holds the seder plate over the head of each guest separately and chants the following: “Bibhilu yatṣanu mi’miṣrayim, halacḥma ‘anya bené ḥorin.” This roughly translates to the following: “In

haste, we went out of Egypt with our bread of affliction and now we are free.” I have taken on this unusual ritual, which has become one of the highlights of our seder. Our Ashkenazic friends love this tradition, and with a glass seder plate it is even more entertaining! One interesting take on the ritual is that is it connected to Kabbalah. It is believed that Rabbi Isaac Luria, who is known for revolutionizing the study of Jewish mysticism through Kabbalah, connected the various items of the seder to the ten kabbalistic sefirot, the mystical dimensions that described the divine attributes of G-d, and so the seder plate became a sacred symbol of G-d. In this sense, when raising the seder plate, one is being blessed by the Shechina, in addition to enjoying the Shechina’s presence at your seder table.) Another interesting difference is the ritual accomSee Moroccan Passover on page 14

Can Kushner navigate peace without clearance? By Ron Kampeas, JTA WASHINGTON — Jared Kushner has had better weeks. Kushner, who along with being the son-in-law of President Donald Trump carries the titles of assistant to the president, senior adviser to the president and director of the Office of American Innovation, had his security clearance downgraded. John Kelly, the White House chief of staff, made good on a promise to remove interim top-secret clearance from staffers who have yet to be cleared by the FBI. What prompted the delay in clearing Kushner has not been disclosed, although the Kushner family real estate business is known to be in debt and have financial entanglements overseas. Perhaps not coincidentally, when news of the downgrade broke last Tuesday, the Washington Post quoted U.S. officials as saying that officials in four nations — the United Arab Emirates, China, Mexico and Israel — have said that they see Kushner as “manipulable” through his business interests and inexperience in foreign affairs. What does this mean for the proposal to revive Israeli-Palestinian talks that Kushner and his team are said to be releasing “soon”? We talked to four former U.S. officials — all had top-level clearance when they served in the executive branch — to get their take. Clearance, shmearance, he’s got Donald’s ear “Jared Kushner still has access to the most important piece of classified info in this biz, his father-in-law,” said Aaron David Miller, a Middle East negotiator under Republican and Democratic presidents. Miller said that Kushner’s access to the decider was probably enough to overcome any hindrance imposed by a lack of access to critical intelligence. Daniel Shapiro, the former U.S. ambassador to Israel under President Barack Obama and a one-time senior member of the national security team who dealt with Israel, agreed. “If you’re someone who’s close to the president,” Shapiro said, “it comes with its own weight.” We’ve only just begun Right now, the team aiming to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks is preparing a proposal, not a plan — and that doesn’t require much in the way of intelligence briefings. “Kushner can go ahead and put his ‘ultimate deal’ on the table without having to consult a single piece of information,” Miller said, using the sobriquet that Trump has given the proposal. (Stephen Colbert joked last week about Kushner’s downgrade and the embryonic nature of the proposal. “How will he fix the Middle East now?” the late-night host asked. “He was so close to starting.”) The credibility factor






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Jared Kushner at a U.N. conference with Ambassador Nikki Haley and his fellow Middle East peace negotiator Jason Greenblatt, on Feb. 20. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Miller said the real damage to Kushner is to his reputation. “There’s a prestige factor, a credibility factor,” he said. Intercepts, phone calls between foreign officials and sensitive human intelligence gathered from agents in the field are classified top secret; Kushner is not privy to them. “They now know Kushner will not be reading any material related to them,” Miller said, which broadens the interlocutors’ ability to prevaricate. Tamara Cofman Wittes, a top Middle East policy official at the State Department in Obama’s first term, said just the fact that anyone involved in a negotiation does not know what you know can be helpful. “If that’s available with regards to these actors, that’s very helpful information when you’re working the issues,” she said. Shapiro said Kushner’s lack of clearance could sideline him even among the team he leads. “It’s a significant burden to having a functioning role in a team,” he said. “There are certain types of conversation, certain documents you don’t have access to.” What good is a secret if you can’t share it? Part of the utility of possessing intelligence is the ability to share it and thus leverage or entice the other side into a concession. The

United States and Israel regularly share what they know. The United States and the Palestinians do not. “Anything we talk about with the Palestinians is not top secret,” said Ilan Goldenberg of the Center for a New American Security, who was part of the small team behind former Secretary of State John Kerry’s failed attempt in Obama’s second term to broker a deal. Nevertheless, said Goldenberg, Kushner could work around that. “There’s intelligence you’re not privy to, but most of it is going back and forth between Israel and the Palestinians, and you don’t need it,” he said. Whaddya know? Miller said that top-level clearance gives U.S. officials a familiarity with the region, even if it is not directly related to the Israeli-Palestinian talks, that all sides value. He recalled that when he participated in talks in the 1990s, the Israelis would raise concerns about other actors in the region and expected American officials to join in the conversation. “You have to know what they know,” he said. “In order to be credible and not vulnerable to perception of naivete, you have to immerse yourself in intelligence. A lot of it relates to what the Israeli view of Syria is, the situation in Lebanon.” Omniscience is overrated ... Wittes said negotiators ultimately must decide on gambits absent the fullest information, however high their clearance — so Kushner’s disadvantage is relative, not absolute. “Is it essential?” she said. “No. Policymaking is always decisionmaking under conditions of imperfect information.” ... except when it isn’t However, should Kushner’s proposal take off and the parties embrace it, the sides will get down to brass tacks — and that’s when the higher classified information could come in handy, Miller said. “The problems come with discussing Israeli-Palestinian security arrangements, with collaboration between the Palestinians and the CIA,” he said. It’s all theoretical, anyway. Why talk about what happens when the sides get down to brass tacks when the likelihood is that it will not happen, Miller said. “The Israeli-Palestinian peace process is so fraught, so troubled, in the deep suspicions dividing Netanyahu and Abbas, and on the substance, that Kushner could have every access to information in the Middle East, including intercepts between leaders, and it wouldn’t make a difference,” he said.

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Challenging students who honor a terrorist By Rafael Medoff, JNS On the eve of the anniversary of one of the worst terrorist attacks in Israel’s history, advocates for terror victims are turning up the heat on Palestinian universities that host a group named in honor of the leader of the massacre. Early in the morning on March 11, 1978, a Fatah terror squad led by 19-year-old Dalal Mughrabi landed on the Tel Aviv shore in rubber boats. There they encountered Gail Rubin, a nature photographer from New York City and the niece of U.S. Senator Abraham Ribicoff of Connecticut. Mughrabi shot her to death at point-blank range. The terrorists then hijacked an Israeli civilian bus on the nearby Coastal Highway and murdered 37 passengers. Another 71 were wounded. Nine of the 11 terrorists, including Mughrabi, were killed in a shoot-out with Israeli police. Each year on the anniversary of the massacre — and on Dec. 29, Mughrabi’s birthday — the Palestinian Authority sponsors public events to honor her. The P.A. has also named schools, summer camps and sports tournaments after Mughrabi. “Dalal Mughrabi is a role model, like other heroic female martyrs in Palestine,” Madeline Manna, coordinator of Fatah’s “Sisters of Dalal” university committee,” said last month on the P.A. television program “Palestine This Morning.” She continued: “In the Palestinian universities, especially in the Fatah Shabiba [Student Movement], the female student committees were named after Martyr Dalal Mughrabi — ‘Sisters of Dalal’.” Fatah, the largest Palestinian faction, is chaired by P.A. leader Mahmoud Abbas. In advance of the upcoming 40th anniversary of the attack, Stephen M. Flatow, a leader of the American Victims of Palestinian Terrorism organization, has contacted around two dozen American universities that have partnerships with Palestinian universities. Flatow, whose daughter Alisa was murdered in a Palestinian attack in 1995, asked the U.S. schools to press their Palestinian counterparts to disband the “Sisters of Dalal” groups. “Imagine if students on your campus wanted to establish a group named after one of Pennsylvania’s most notorious murderers,” Flatow wrote to a senior administrator at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh, which has a partnership with the Jeninbased Arab-American University of Palestine. “I cannot believe the IUP administration would authorize a ‘Brothers of Gary [Heidnik]’ or ‘Brothers of Mark [Spotz]’ organization.” “By authorizing a ‘Sisters of Dalal’ group on its campus,” Flatow continued, “the Arab-American University of Palestine is glorifying a vicious murderer of an American citizen and encouraging young

Palestinians hold posters showing terrorist Dalal Mughrabi.

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Palestinians to view such murderers as heroes.” Flatow urged the Pennsylvania school to terminate its partnership with AAUP if the university refuses to disband the Sisters of Dalal chapter on campus. In response, IUP Dean’s Associate and Professor Prashanth N. Bharadwaj raised the issue with AAUP president Ali Zedan AbuZuhri. He replied by claiming that the “Sisters of Dalal” group on his campus has not been active recently and, in any event: “We do not recognize or financially support any other group other than the Students’ Union.” Palestinian Media Watch director Itamar Marcus regards AbuZuhri’s position as disingenuous. “The university cannot deny responsibility,” Marcus told JNS. “It certainly recognizes and funds the Student Council, including all the different political movements that are part of the Student Council. Fatah’s movement that it definitely recognizes is Shabiba — Fatah’s student group in the Student Council. The Sisters of Dalal is a division of the Shabiba, and therefore the university, whether it acknowledges it or not, is giving it recognition and in all likelihood funding as well.” Area Jewish leaders remain concerned. Joshua Sayles, director of the Community Relations Council of the Pittsburgh Jewish Federation, said “it’s troubling that any university—Palestinian or otherwise—would permit the existence of a group that celebrates terrorism and murder.” AbuZuhri has not responded to JNS’s requests for comment. Flatow also wrote to Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY,

and the George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences in Washington, which have partnerships with Al-Quds University, which has campuses in the Jerusalem area. Dr. Jeffrey Akman, dean of the School of Medicine & Health Sciences and vice president for health affairs at George Washington, said last month that Flatow’s concerns will be “taken under advisement.” Bard dean Rebecca Thomas informed Flatow that she would be “gathering information” about the matter, and that “a fuller response will follow.” A month has now passed, and neither administrator has replied to Flatow’s additional emails or to inquiries from JNS. Meanwhile, Bethlehem University spokesman George N. Rishmawi asserted in an email to JNS that “we do not have any group of such name operating at Bethlehem University.” However, he did not address whether or not the Fatah faction on his campus has a “Sisters of Dalal” division. Dana Al-Ruweidi, president of Bethlehem’s student council, said on P.A. television in 2016: “My message to all the ‘Sisters of Dalal’ in all the universities is that you can make decisions. The woman Dalal Mughrabi led 11 men on a martyrdom-seeking operation. She waved the flag of Palestine and succeeded in liberating the land of Jaffa — even if just for a few hours — and established the Dalal Mughrabi Republic. Likewise, we are capable of leading a student council, capable of leading professional unions and capable of making decisions.” Flatow’s initiative has since sparked an unanticipated controversy between the University of Washington and Bethlehem University. Jeffrey Riedinger, vice provost for global affairs at the University of Washington in Seattle, told Flatow that contrary to claims made on Bethlehem University’s website, “there is no agreement for cooperation between U.W.’s School of Social Work and Bethlehem University.” Riedinger also said that he will contact the institution to correct information on its website. Riedinger confirmed to JNS that he asked Bethlehem University to make the necessary correction in “early February.” However, Rishmawi told JNS on March 1 that “we have not received any communication from U.W. asking to remove anything from our website.” In response, Riedinger insisted that “we reached out to Bethlehem University and asked that it make corrections to its agreements website.” As of press time, the website remains unchanged. Local Jewish leaders in Washington state are troubled, but not surprised, by the controversy. Rabbi Ron-Ami Meyers of Seattle’s Congregation Ezra Bessaroth told JNS that the fact “that a Palestinian institution honors those who murdered American citizens is far from surprising [since] the Palestinian Authority regularly honors and even subsidizes families of terrorists who murder innocents.”

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Political divide separates 2 Democrats in Illinois By Ben Sales, JTA The Land of Lincoln’s next governor may well be a Jewish Democrat. It just isn’t clear what kind of Jewish Democrat he will be. Two Jewish candidates are the front-runners in the Illinois Democratic gubernatorial primary in March, and both are favored to defeat the unpopular Republican governor, Bruce Rauner, in the general election. Among the Democrats, a son of the Kennedy family also is in the running. But between the two Jewish Democrats, religion and political party are where the similarities end. J.B. Pritzker, a billionaire venture capitalist with ties to establishment Democrats, has enjoyed a commanding lead in the polls. But Daniel Biss is gaining — he’s a state senator who has aligned himself squarely with the progressive movement of Bernie Sanders. Chris Kennedy, a wealthy investor and son of the late Robert F. Kennedy, is vying with Biss for second. A large number of voters are undecided. Though the two front-runners have faced controversy — in Biss’ case relating to Israel — both are projecting confidence as they head into the primary’s final weeks. Here’s how Pritzker and Biss compare. How they got here J.B. Pritzker is a scion of the wealthy Pritzker family whose ancestor A.N. Pritzker founded the Hyatt Hotel chain. J.B. Pritzker, 53, graduated from Northwestern Law School and founded a venture capital firm in Chicago with his brother Anthony. He has a net worth of $3.5 billion. This isn’t his first foray into politics. In 1998, he ran in the Democratic primary for Illinois’ 9th Congressional District, which has a large Jewish population. He lost to Jan Schakowsky, who still holds the seat. Daniel Biss, 40, grew up in a family of musicians in Ohio, and earned his doctorate in mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He taught math at the University of Chicago from 2002 to 2008, and left to pursue a career in activ-

ism and politics. Biss served as a policy adviser to the Democratic gov- ernor of Illinois starting in 2009, and was elected to the state House of Representatives the next year. In 2012, he was elected to his current position as a state senator representing Chicago’s northern suburbs. What they stand for Pritzker vs. Biss is a local version of Illinois State Sen. Daniel Biss in 2014. Tasos Katopodis/ Hillary Clinton vs. Getty Images for Motorola Mobility Bernie Sanders, the two approaches that have divided the Democratic Party since the 2016 presidential campaign. Pritzker is an establishment Democrat with deep connections. Biss is an upstart progressive campaigning against billionaires (like Pritzker). Pritzker has been a Clinton ally for more than a decade and served as her national co-chair in the 2008 Democratic primary. His sister, Penny, was a key Obama ally that year, leading to a sibling rivalry. Penny Pritzker ended up serving as Obama’s commerce secretary, while J.B. again was a major donor to Clinton in 2016, hosting a fundraiser for her at his home. In this effort, Pritzker has maintained his establishment ties, scoring endorsements from both of his state’s Democratic senators, Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth. He is campaigning on Democratic touchstones of pledging more funding for education, health care and social services. Biss has purposefully aligned himself with Bernie Sanders-style Democratic politics. His ads rail against a “rigged system,” and he pledges to “make

billionaires pay their fair share in taxes.” He is campaigning for key Sanders policies like Medicare for all, the universal health care proposal and free higher education. Biss also made inroads among the Sanders’ base. He was endorsed by Our Revolution, the successor group to Sanders’ 2016 campaign. And his initial running mate was a J.B. Pritzker on Feb. 6. member of the DemJose M. Osorio/Chicago Tribune ocratic Socialists of TNS via Getty Images America, but that didn’t work out. Why they’ve gotten in trouble Both candidates have faced controversy, with Biss’ relating to Jewish issues. His initial running mate was Carlos RamirezRosa, a Chicago alderman who is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America. But Biss faced backlash for the choice, made in September, because the DSA — along with Ramirez-Rosa personally — supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel. Ramirez-Rosa had criticized the United States because it “subsidized the oppression of the Palestinian people.” The move led Rep. Brad Schneider, a Jewish Democratic congressman from the Chicago suburbs, to withdraw his endorsement of Biss. Biss then dropped Ramirez-Rosa from the ticket, claiming that Ramirez-Rosa had previously told him he opposes BDS. Pritzker has come under fire of late. The most prominent scandal came from a tape recording of him speaking to former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a Democrat who is now in prison on corruption

charges, about filling President Barack Obama’s U.S. Senate seat. Pritzker suggested Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, who is black, as that “covers you on the African-American thing.” He also called Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. a “nightmare.” In another tape recording of a conversation with Blagojevich, Pritzker sought political office from the governor. What they say about their Judaism Both Pritzker and Biss credit their Jewish background for who they are. Pritzker and his relatives are longtime donors to Jewish causes, and Pritzker includes his support of the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in his campaign website biography. He also has served on the national board of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the pro-Israel lobby. In an interview with a Chicago Jewish paper, Pritzker said his childhood was imbued with Jewish values. “I’ve often said it’s hard to separate the values of my parents and the values of my religion,” he said. “When we would go to temple and listen to discussions (in services or Sunday school), there was no difference between the things being taught at temple and those being taught at home. … It was just the basic things you learn from your rabbi and teachers are the same things we were learning from experiences with our parents.” Biss is descended from an Israeli mother and grandparents who survived the Holocaust. He grew up in a secular, culturally Jewish family. He told the Chicago Sun-Times that his maternal grandparents gave him “a deep sense of Jewish identity” but not “a strong sense of ritual observance or literal belief, necessarily.” His grandparents on the other side “had kind of a Marxist view on religion.” In a story he’s told multiple times, Biss recalls fasting on Yom Kippur as a child, when his maternal grandmother came up to him and said, “Why would you do that?” Biss still identifies as a Jew, though he has said he does not observe many rituals. He said he consulted a rabbi when he launched his run for governor.

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President, Farley Weiss, YI of Phoenix, YI of Boca Raton Chairman of the Board, Jeff Kopelman, YI of Greater Miami 1st Vice President, Dr. Joseph Frager, YI of Jamaica Estates 2nd Vice President, David Katz, YI of Memphis Treasurer, Lewis Barbanel, YI of Lawrence Cedarhurst Finance Secretary, Beatriz Seinuk-Ackerman, YI of North Woodmere Recording Secretary, Susan Zimmerman Mandelstam, YI of Jamaica Estates

Among bold-name speakers at the AIPAC Policy Conference, from left: Ambassadors Nikki Haley and David Friedman, Vice President Pence, and Prime Minister Netanyahu. Speech excerpts on pages 16 –17.

More frum Jews are going to AIPAC confab ment of biblical prophecy, and Modern Orthodox Israelis largely identify with the nationalist wing of Israeli politics. References to Israel and Jerusalem infuse the prayers that Orthodox Jews say daily, and their children are more likely to spend extended periods of time there studying in yeshivas. “My background, like so many of the people in that room, had Zionism as part of their education,” said Rabbi Dovid Asher of the Orthodox Knesseth Beth Israel in Richmond, Virginia, though he eschews denominational labels. “It’s only a fraction of

During a White House visit by Prime Minister Netanyahu on Monday, President Trump said he might travel to Jerusalem for the opening of the American embassy there in May, an event to coincide with the commemoration of Israel’s 70th anniversary on the secuar calendar. “I may. I may,” Trump said. “We’re looking at coming. If I can, I will.” Netanyahu praised the president’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as one to remember “through the ages,” comparing him to past gentile leaders—from Cyrus the Great to President Truman—who have had a major impact on the Jewish people.“ On his his administration’s Middle East peace plan, which has been under wraps for several months, Trump said, “We’re working on it very hard. I think we have a very good chance,. … The Palestinians, I think, are wanting to come back to the table. If they don’t, you won’t have peace.” Pictured: President Trump and PM Netanyahu at the White House with their wives, Sara Netanyahu and Melania Trump. GPO


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coming but has actively recruited in the Orthodox community,” Diament said. “That and other things have prompted a two-sided equation in which the Orthodox community is becoming more and more engaged, and AIPAC has been very welcoming.” “No other organization has tapped into the Orthodox community except those that are solely Orthodox,” said David-Seth Kirshner, spiritual leader of the Conservative Temple Emanu-El, in Closter, New Jersey. “We have liberals and conservatives, but we’re not divided in our desire for a safe and secure Israel.”

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American Jewry that is so-called Orthodox and it’s critical that we have wide representation. ” But the growing numbers are also the result of a concerted effort by AIPAC to draw religious Jews of all denominations into its ranks. The lobby’s Synagogue Initiative, launched in 2005, recruits rabbis to bring congregants to the conference, along with giving them pro-Israel material to insert into weekly sermons. And all food served at AIPAC events has been kosher, as a policy, for more than a decade. “AIPAC has become not only more and more wel-

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By Ben Sales, JTA WASHINGTON — On the second floor of the downtown convention center here, hundreds attending the annual policy conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee packed a standing-room-only hall. A bouncer stood outside to control the overflow crowd. It wasn’t a session on boycotts, Iran or the peace process. It was the Mincha prayer service. Outside, smaller groups of Orthodox men gathered to form their own minyanim. High school students in kippahs and long skirts sat against the walls chatting. Meir Raskas knows it hasn’t always been this way. When he began attending the policy conference 10 years ago, Orthodox prayer services would draw about 20 people. “It’s definitely enlarged,” said Raskas, an investor and AIPAC volunteer from Baltimore. “All the people on the correct side of the argument are all here rallying around the cause.” AIPAC does not divide its 18,000 attendees by religious denomination, but delegates to the conference say the Orthodox contingent is growing. While the Orthodox don’t make up a majority of conference participants this year, Orthodox Jewish leaders and laypeople say their rising numbers at the event are a sign that they are translating longheld sentiments into political power. AIPAC’s newly installed president, Morton Fridman, belongs to a Modern Orthodox synagogue in Teaneck. “The Orthodox segment of the community is most connected to and passionate about Israel,” said Nathan Diament, executive director of the Orthodox Union Advocacy Center, citing survey data. “AIPAC is a central vehicle for Israel advocacy, so more and more Orthodox people want to be involved in that.” The Orthodox presence at AIPAC is visible everywhere. Teenagers, students and adults in kippahs freckle the hallways. Dozens of members of NCSY, the Modern Orthodox youth group, clustered in a semicircle in an alcove Sunday as their leader told them a story about a plummeting plane sparking the passengers’ faith in G-d. For some Orthodox participants, the question isn’t why their numbers are growing but why it took so long. Many Orthodox Jews see Israel as a fulfill-


March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


Embattled at home, Bibi’s an AIPAC hero

THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

Latin America.” Netanyahu was no less defiant about his diplomatic record. Only briefly mentioning the Palestinians, Netanyahu as he has before touted his outreach to Latin America, Asia and Africa. He dismissed fears of international pressure on Israel. “People talked about Israeli isolation,” he said. “Pretty soon the countries that don’t have relations with us, they’re going to be isolated. There are those who talk about boycotting Israel. We’ll boycott them.” And he praised President Trump, with whom he met on Monday. He thanked Trump, as many other speakers did, for his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and his promise to move the U.S. Embassy there in May. He also praised Trump’s hard-line stance against Iran and the president’s promise to amend the 2015 agreement curbing Iran’s nuclear program, which Israel and AIPAC said was flawed. And, of course, Netanyahu vowed to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. “We will never let Iran develop nuclear weapons,” he said, adding that if the United States ends up withdrawing from the agreement, “Israel will be right there by America’s side, and let me tell you, so will other countries in the region.” As he has many times before, Netanyahu stressed the common interests that Israel shares with other countries in the region, and he said Israel desires peace with all its neighbors, including the Palestinians. But he criticized Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for praising terrorists, and for the P.A.’s policy of delivering stipends to terrorists in Israeli prisons. “President Abbas has to embrace peace and to stop supporting terror,” Netanyahu said, then turned to the crowd. “Raise your hands if you agree with me that President Abbas should stop paying terrorists who murder Jews.”


By Ben Sales, JTA Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is mired in several corruption scandals back home, and his political future seems increasingly under threat. But you wouldn’t know it from his speech Tuesday at the annual conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee: He looked energized and right at home. His address to the crowd of 18,000 played more like a pep rally than a policy address. Netanyahu largely stuck to his standard talking points — celebrating Israeli innovation, confronting Iran, criticizing the Palestinian Authority. But he was upbeat and relaxed while doing it. He grinned, laughed, joked, involved the crowd, walked around the stage. If Netanyahu did have a script, he went off it. “Four thousand students — thank you for cutting class to be here!” he said near the beginning of the speech. “If any of you needs a note, you can see me later. There’s a line forming outside. “I don’t want to stand behind this podium, OK?” he said seconds later. “What the heck? I’m the prime minister!” The crowd cheered and clapped as he began walking around the stage. Late in the speech, a woman yelled “We love you, Bibi!” He responded, “That’s very kind of you, thank you. … Who planted her?” Much of the speech was, essentially, a PowerPoint presentation about Israeli tech and economic development that would have felt just as appropriate on an Israeli economic mission. Netanyahu guided the crowd through slides on his country’s agricultural innovation, its place among a ranking of the world’s most valuable companies, a recent history of autonomous vehicle startups, a line chart showing rising investment in Israeli cybersecurity startups and so on. “Free market principles unleashed the spark of genius embedded in our people,” he said. “Israel is changing the world in India, in Africa, in Asia, in


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March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR



School News

Send news and hi-res photos to • Deadline Mondays at Noon

Sophomore ‘leyl iyun’ at SKA The preparation challah, pictured here, was one of many activities that tenth graders at HALB’s Stella K. Abraham High School for Girls engaged in during their recent leyl iyun at the school. The overnighter concluded with with davening and breakfast — and the rest of the day off.

CAHAL-TAG Purim smiles

Purim cheer at Har Hatorah

Far Rockaway’s Darchei gets a stop sign

Yeshiva Darchei Torah in Far Rockaway is thanking NYC officials for installing a stop sign at the intersection of Caffrey and Brookhaven avenues near its Beach 17th Street entrances. “There is nothing more important than the safety of our children,” said Rabbi Baruch Rothman, Darchei’s director of institutional advancement. “This will go a long way towards enhancing it.” He thanked the mayor’s office, DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, Borough President Melinda Katz, Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato, Councilman Donovan Richards, and former Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder.

YCQ 6th grade festive shuk Sixth grade girls at the Yeshiva of Central Queens enjoyed a taste of Israel when a shuk, an Israeli outdoor market, was replicated in the multi-purpose room, making available a variety of food and drink.

Eating heathy at HAFTR

Pre-K students at the Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway, in Lawrence, were “eating healthy” as they learned about good eating habits during HAFTR Health Month.

11 THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778












MORE SESSIONS* • ISRAELI VENDORS • COMMUNITY REPRESENTATIVES • FOOD COURT • AND MORE! ALIYAH PLANNING  Beyond the Aliyah Checklist: Aliyah Planning for Retirees  Empty Nesters and Aliyah: If Not Now, When?  JAFI: Aliyah Eligiblity and Process  Long Term Aliyah Planning: Keeping it Alive*  Making it Home Buying a Property in Israel  Oleh Benefits and Aliyah Process 2018*  Retiree Q&A

BUYING & RENTNG A HOME  How to Buy a Home in Israel for Retirees  Making it Home: Buying a Property in Israel  On Roomies & Renting  Property & Rentals – What You Need to Know  Renting a Home in Israel

CHOOSING A COMMUNITY  Anglo Bubble: Israel Life for Young Professionals  Finding Your Place in Israel’s North  Finding Your Place in Israel’s South



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MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS  Alternative Employment Options for Physicians  Nursing  Paramedical Professionals  Physicians/Dentists  Psychologists  Why Israel Needs You (And You Need Israel) for Medical Professionals


 Monetizing Your Native English Skills in Israel  Panel: Strategic Career Building for Young Professionals  Picking a Career: Guidance for Students

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 Unraveling the World of Insurance in Israel*

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March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


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THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

Sale Dates: March 11th - 16th 2018

March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR



Wine & Dine

Thinking food: Eating healthier as we age JONI SCHOCKETT KOSHER KITCHEN


merica is aging. Ten-thousand Baby Boomers turn 65 every day and there are now 75 million people aged 65 and older living active and healthy lives. There are many reasons that we are enjoying longer lives. Good medical care and advances in treatments are a big factor. Many seniors exercise more and practice other good health habits. My gym is filled with people well into their 80s and one particularly devoted attendee is almost 90, lifts huge weights, and moves like a 30 year old on the tennis court! One aspect of health we have to pay more attention to as we age is nutrition. But we know so much more about nutrition than we did generations ago. We know about fat and cholesterol and that sugar is the true enemy of health. Many of us now avoid over-processed foods and look to healthier, high-fiber vegetables and whole grains. We also know that our nutritional needs change as we age. Our metabolisms slow no matter how much we exercise or how many marathons we run. It’s a medical fact that older bodies do not regenerate cells as quickly as young bodies do, so we have to adjust our caloric intake downward. We also lose the ability to absorb B vitamins, so a supplement might be a good idea. People, sometimes even as young as 50, need to adjust what kinds of foods they eat as the ability to digest some foods may decrease. The best advice is to eat “clean.” Eat lots of plant-based foods, healthy and lean proteins and lots of whole grains and fiber-rich foods. Avoid a lot of processed foods and follow your doctor’s guidelines regarding the use of supplements, salt intake and diet and nutrition. Living to 100 in good health is more of a reality than ever before and good nutrition as we age is a solid step in that direction. Farro with Caramelized Onions, Leeks, Mushrooms and Veggies (Pareve) Farro is an ancient whole wheat grain that is nutty, chewy and delicious. 4 Tbsp. Canola oil 1-1/2 lbs. onions, cut in half and thinly sliced 1 to 2 cups, thinly sliced leeks 1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. sugar 1 Tbsp. canola oil 2 cups chopped celery 1 to 2 cups matchstick cut carrots 1-1/2 cups uncooked farro 3 cups boiling water 1-1/2 pounds mixed mushrooms, chopped Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Chopped almonds, walnuts, pistachios for garnish OPTIONAL: Add 1/4 cup dry white wine to the farro mixture as it cooks. Add 2 to 3 cups baby spinach leaves or chopped baby kale at the last 5 minutes of cooking. Heat a large skillet and add the 4 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Add the thinly sliced onions, mix to coat with the oil, and cook, over low heat. Let

Moroccan Passover... Continued from page 1 panying the recitation of the Ten Plagues. Instead of the Ashkenazic finger or a knife dipping, Moroccans fill a large bowl with water and wine (two different glasses pour the liquids into the bowl as each plague is recited). The idea here is that one can see the effect of the first plague as the Egyptians witnessed their precious Nile River become contaminated with blood. Perhaps the biggest misconception when it comes to Sephardic Jews is that they all eat rice on Passover. Like anything else in Judaism, there are myriad customs and traditions depending on where your family lived in the old country or even from where they originated generations

before they ended up in that particular city. Moroccan Jews, for example, are a diverse group with different customs depending on their ancestry. There are those that came after the destruction of the First Temple in Jerusalem and settled among the Berbers. Others came in 1492 from Spain and Portugal like my husband’s family. Most Moroccan Jews do not eat rice on Passover, but they do eat other kitniyot including legumes, fresh beans and fresh peas. In researching this piece, I came across a quote by a man who said that his father had told him that the reason that the Spanish Moroccan Jews ate this way was because Spain was close to Ashkenaz (the area along the Rhine River in

the onions cook very slowly so the sugars caramelize and darken the onions. If you cook them too fast, they will burn. Watch carefully. Caramelization can take about 30 to 40 minutes. If the onions catch a bit, add a teaspoon or two of hot water to the pan and scrape up the browned bits with a wooden spoon. Cook until the onions turn deep mahogany. Spoon them into a bowl and set aside. Add one tablespoon of oil to the pan. Add the leeks and garlic and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the celery and sauté until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the carrots and cook about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until they exude their juices. Spoon most of the liquid into the bowl of onions. Continue to cook the mushrooms until they are golden, about 5 to 10 minutes. In a separate, large saucepan, heat the water just to boiling. Add the farro and mix well. Cook for 10 minutes. Carefully pour the farro and liquid into the skillet with the mushrooms and mix well. Cover and reduce the heat to simmer. Cook for about 30 minutes, mixing a few times and adding more water as needed, until the farro is cooked through but still has some bite. When almost all the liquid is absorbed, add the onions and mushroom liquid back to the skillet. Mix well. Garnish with chopped nuts and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serves 6 to 10. Berry Spinach Salad with Frisee and More (Pareve) Strawberry Vinaigrette 1/2 pint strawberries, stems removed 1 cup light olive oil 1/4 tsp. tarragon 1 tsp. sugar 1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar for a sweeter flavor 1 Tbsp. raspberry vinegar 1 Tbsp. orange juice 1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Taste and adjust vinegars and juice to taste. Set aside. Salad: 3 cups baby spinach leaves 3 cups mixed greens, arugula, baby kale or other greens 1 package frisee, end cut and washed and cut into bite sized pieces

1 radicchio, cut into pieces to equal 1 to 2 cups 1/2 cup shredded carrots 1/2 red or sweet onion, cut in half and then cut into thin slices 1/2 to 1 pint strawberries, cut into halves or quarters Fresh walnuts or pecans, plain or candied, and/or sunflower seeds, Mix first six ingredients and add enough salad dressing to moisten. Plate and then garnish with berries and nuts. Drizzle dressing over salads. Serves 6 to 8. NOTE: You can use any greens you like for this salad and add as many other ingredients as well. In the fall, I substitute fresh apples or pears for the strawberries. Ciabatta, Mushroom, Wild Rice Stuffing Casserole with Tart Cherries (Pareve) 6 cups Ciabatta bread cubes, toasted 1 to 2 cups cooked wild rice or quinoa 3 large onion, chopped 1 bunch celery, chopped coarsely 2 to 5 cloves garlic, finely minced, to taste 8 ounces mushrooms, chopped 1 stick pareve, trans-fat-free margarine or 1/2 cup Canola or light olive oil 4 tbsp. Marsala wine, to taste 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth, divided 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp. salt, to taste 3/4 tsp. paprika 1/2 tsp. pepper, to taste 1 cup dried tart cherries 1/2 cup dried sweet cranberries 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley OPTIONAL: 3/4 cup chopped pecans 1 cup snipped, dried apricots NOTE: You can use the apples with the recipe as is, but if you use the other fruits, cut down or eliminate some of the other fruits so that the fruit measures about 2 to 2-1/2 cups total. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the bread into cubes and place on a rimmed cookie sheet. Bake until lightly golden. Remove from oven, let cool, and place in a very large mixing bowl. Cook the rice according to instructions. While it is cooking, prepare the rest of the recipe. Place the cherries in one cup of broth and set aside. Place the margarine or oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the onion until translucent. Add the celery and cook until softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and cook until they exude their juices. Add the wine, salt and spices and mix. Add the cherries and wine and pecans and stir well. Cook for about 5 to 7 minutes. Place the bread cubes and cooked rice in a large bowl. Add the sautéed onion mixture and mix well. Add the 3 tbsp. olive oil and enough broth to moisten. Add the parsley and mix well. Place into a well-greased pan and bake until golden brown. Serves 8 to 12.

northern France and western Germany) and the gzeira (edict per Jewish law) regarding kitniyot crossed the border and both Sephardic Jews and Jews of Spanish origin accepted the decree. In general, Moroccans eat differently on Passover than Ashkenazim. Their reliance year-round on a variety of salad dishes translates well for Passover, and I often feel as if my diet during the holiday is not so different from our normal fare — with the exception of matzah, of course. However, during the seder itself there are some differences, no doubt due to the availability of vegetables in Morocco. For example, romaine lettuce and not horseradish is used for maror and parsley, not potatoes, for karpas. The haroset is also noteworthy with the absence of apples. I have included a traditional recipe below for Moroccan Haroset adapted from Claudia Roden. I have also made haroset without any spices using only dates, walnuts, wine and rai-

sins. For those who are nut free, the haroset can also be made without the walnuts. This haroset, especially when using raisins, is quite thick and thus can last throughout the entire holiday and enjoyed as a snack with matzah. MOROCCAN HAROSET

Ingredients: 1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 grind freshly ground nutmeg 1 pound dates, pitted and chopped 1-1/2 cups grape juice Directions: Put the dates into a pan with the wine, cinnamon and cloves, then simmer, stirring occasionally, until you have a soft paste. Put through the food processor if you want a smoother texture. Let it cool and stir in the walnuts. From My Jewish Learning via JTA

By Sonya Sanford, The Nosher via JTA There is no substitute for eating a dish in its place of origin, preferably made in a home kitchen by hands that hold the muscle memory of thousands of meals. For me, a close second is stumbling across a recipe, trying it out, and feeling transported to a new place by its flavors. The vastness of the Jewish diaspora has gifted us with a wealth of interesting types of culinary mergers, and I particularly love exploring the Jewish food of India, where Jewish communities date back thousands of years. There are three distinctive Jewish Indian groups that happened to be largely isolated from each other: the Cochin Jews of Kerala in South India, the Bene Israel Jews of India’s West Coast and Mumbai, and the Jews of Kolkata in East India (formerly known as Calcutta). In “The Book of Jewish Food,” Claudia Roden recounts how Shalom Cohen from Aleppo was the first known Jew to settle in Kolkata in 1798. Soon after, Syrian and Iraqi Jews followed and developed a strong community there, where they worked as merchants and traders and lived in harmony with their neighbors. Things changed in 1947 when India gained independence, and again in 1948 with the creation of the State of Israel; anti-Semitism grew as the Jews became associated with the colonial British power. During that time, most of the Jews from Kolkata immigrated to Israel, the U.S., England and Australia. This once vibrant Jewish Indian community is now all but gone from Kolkata. While only a handful of Jews still live in Kolkata, the food from this community has traveled with its people. Their style of cooking involves a combination of ingredients and preparations from the Middle East, with the spices and techniques of Indian cuisine. There are several cookbooks and articles devoted to Sephardic foods and Indian Jewish cookery that have documented some of the dishes of the Jews from Kolkata.

I was first struck by a recipe I found in both Copeland Marks’ book, “Sephardic Cooking,” as well as in “Indian Jewish Cooking,” by Mavis Hyman. Mukmura (or Mahmoora) is a dish of chicken and almonds in a slightly sweetened tangy lemon sauce. I like any recipe that looks like it is simple to prepare but still offers big flavors, and this clearly fit that description. This dish calls for easy-to-find and bold ingredients such as ginger, garlic, ground turmeric, lemon juice and fresh mint. The chicken is braised, so the meat won’t get dry, and it can easily be made in advance for Shabbat and holidays. By slowly simmering all of the ingredients together, you develop a slightly sweet and sour sauce with all those warm spices and aromatics. This dish is simultaneously comforting and exciting.

Chicken Mukmura (Mahmoora)

Ingredients: 4 to 5 lb. chicken, cut into 8 to 10 serving pieces 1 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste 2 to 3 Tbsp. oil 1 medium white or yellow onion, chopped fine (about 1½ cups) 2 large garlic cloves, minced fine 1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger 1-1/2 tsp. ground turmeric 1 cup water 1/4 cup raisins, rinsed 1/4 cup sliced or slivered unsalted almonds, without skin 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, about 2 lemons 1-1/2 Tbsp. agave syrup (nectar) or 2 tsp. sugar 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh mint, or to taste lemon wedges, for garnish

Directions: 1. Cut chicken into 8 to 10 pieces; reserve backbone for broth if desired. You can also find a pre-cut whole chicken, or you can use 4 to 5 lbs. of your preferred bone-in skin-on chicken parts. 2. Season the chicken pieces with a teaspoon of kosher salt. 3. On medium high heat, heat a large Dutch oven or deep skillet with a lid. Add a drizzle of oil to the pot and then brown the chicken pieces on each side, about 2 to 3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Brown the chicken in batches if needed so as not to overcrowd the pot. Remove the browned chicken and reserve. 4. Over medium heat, add the diced onions to the same pot so the browned bits that remain on the bottom can absorb some onion flavor. Add an additional drizzle of oil if there is not enough remaining chicken drippings. Sauté the onion until softened and beginning to turn golden but not browned, about 5 to 6 minutes. 5. Add the minced garlic, grated ginger, and turmeric to the onion mixture. Sauté for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant. 6. Add reserved browned chicken back to pot in a single layer. Pour the water over the chicken. 7. Bring liquid to a simmer and then lower the heat and cover the pot. Simmer for 20 minutes. 8. Add the raisins, almonds, lemon juice, and agave syrup to the pot. If your water has significantly reduced, add a little more water so there’s liquid in the pot. Cover the lid again and simmer an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through with an internal temperature of at least 165°F. Taste and season with more salt if necessary. 9. Transfer the chicken to a serving dish, pour the sauce over the chicken, and top everything with freshly chopped mint and a few lemon wedges. Serve with rice or your favorite side. Note: Chicken can be made a day in advance and reheats well.

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THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

Chicken recipe samples Indian-Jewish tradition


March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


4 speeches at AIPAC Policy Conference Netanyahu: Some day, Iran will again be free Excerpts from Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu’s address to AIPAC on Tuesday: hen I last spoke here, I warned the world about a nuclear deal that was a threat to the survival of Israel, the security of the region, the peace of the world. I warned that Iran’s regime had repeatedly lied to the international community, that it could not be trusted. I warned that the deal gives Iran a clear path towards developing a nuclear arsenal in little more than a decade. And I warned that by removing Iran’s sanctions, Iran’s regime would not become more moderate and peaceful, but more extreme and belligerent, much more dangerous. And, ladies and gentlemen, that’s exactly what has happened. Here is what Iran is doing today. Darkness is descending on our region. Iran is building an aggressive empire: Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Gaza, Yemen, more to come. Now Iran is seeking to build permanent military bases in Syria, seeking to create a land bridge from Tehran to Tartus on the Mediterranean. And in addition to moving its army, its air force, its navy to Syria to be able to attack Israel from closer hand, it’s also seeking to develop, to build precision guided missile factories in Syria and Lebanon against Israel. I will not let that happen. We will not let that happen. We must stop Iran. We will stop Iran.


Last week, we read in the Book of Esther about an earlier Persian attempt to exterminate our people. They failed then. They’ll fail now. We will never let Iran develop nuclear weapons — not now, not in ten years, not ever. President Trump has made it clear that his administration will not accept Iran’s aggression in the region. He has made clear that he too will never accept a nuclear-armed Iran. That is the right policy. I salute President Trump on this. And the president has also made it clear that if the fatal flaws of the nuclear deal are not fixed, he will walk away from the deal and restore sanctions. Israel will be right there by America’s side. And let me tell you, so will other countries in the region. As we counter Iran’s aggression, we should always remember the brave people of Iran: their suffering, their hopes, their courage. Women are jailed for removing their hijabs. Students are tortured and shot for advocating freedom. We stand with those in Iran who stand for freedom. Now I believe that a day will come when this horrible tyranny will disappear, will perish from the earth and at that point, the historic friendship between the people of Israel and the people of Persia will be reestablished. Today we have Haman. Tomorrow we’ll have Cyrus and friendship and peace.

Today we have Haman. Tomorrow we’ll have Cyrus.

Pence: The story of Israel is a story of faith Excerpts from Vice President Mike Pence’s address to AIPAC on Monday night: s we gather here, our team — Jared Kushner, Jason Greenblatt — and our great ambassador [to Israel, David Friedman] are hard at work crafting our administration’s vision for peace. And while any peace will undoubtedly require compromise, know this: The United State of America will never compromise the safety and security of the Jewish State of Israel. Now, we know that peace is possible, because history records that Israel has made the very difficult decisions to achieve peace with its neighbors in the past. Over just the last few months, I’ve had the privilege also to travel to Egypt and Jordan, two nations with whom Israel has long enjoyed the fruits of peace. I spoke with America’s great friends — President el-Sisi of Egypt, King Abdullah of Jordan — about the courage of their predecessors who forged an end to conflict with Israel in their time. Last year in Saudi Arabia, President Trump convened an unprecedented gathering of leaders for more than 50 nations at the Arab Islamic American Summit. As we saw there, the winds of change are blowing across the Middle East, longstanding enemies are becoming partners, old foes are finding new ground for cooperation, and the descendants of Isaac and Ishmael are coming together in common cause to meet, as the president said, history’s great test, and conquer extremism and vanquish the forces of terrorism, and we will meet that task together. Radical Islamic terrorism knows no borders, targeting America, Israel, nations across the Middle East and the wider world. It respects no creed, stealing the lives of Jews, Christians and espe-


cially, Muslims. And radical Islamic terrorism understands no reality other than brute force. And together with our allies, we’ll continue to bring the full force of our might to confront and defeat this enemy in our time. As I said, we’ve made great progress in the fight against ISIS. We’ve liberated nearly all the territory once held by those barbarians and we have beaten them on the battlefield time and again, but as the enemy retreats, we must be vigilant. We must be vigilant to prevent others from taking its place. And let me assure you tonight, we will not allow the defeat of ISIS to become a victory for Iran. ran hopes to recreate the ancient Persian Empire under the modern dictatorship of the Ayatollahs. As we speak, that regime seeks to carve out a corridor of influence running through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon creating an unbroken passage for its armies and its ideology. Last year alone, Iran spent more than $4 billion to achieve its ends, and at this very hour, it aids and abets terrorist groups that sit on Israel’s doorstep and fire rockets at our people. In just the past month, the mounting Iranian menace has been laid bare for all to see. The Iranian drone that breeched Israel’s borders in February was a brazen act of aggression, but Israel’s swift and strong response sent a warning to Iran across the region that dangerous provocations will not go unchecked by Israel, America or our allies. But the danger posed by Iran extends much further than its support of terrorism. As we all know, that regime continues to develop an advanced ballistic missiles that can threaten every square inch of Israeli soil and the lives of all their citizens. And the disastrous nuclear deal signed by the last administration, did not prevent Iran


from obtaining a nuclear weapon, it merely delayed the day when that vile regime can gain access to the world’s most deadly weapons. President Trump has called on the Congress and our European allies to enact real and lasting restraints on Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile ambitions. Earlier this year the President waived sanctions to give our lawmakers and our allies time to act. But make no mistake about it, this is their last chance. Unless the Iran nuclear deal is fixed in the coming months, the United States of America will withdraw from the Iran n uclear deal immediately. Whatever the outcome of those discussions today, I have a solemn promise to you, to Israel and to the wider world, the United States of America will never allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon. or 70 years, Israel has overcome every challenge it’s faced and in this year of celebration, as we commemorate that miracle of history, I say with confidence that the Jewish state and the Jewish people will continue to inspire and awe the world for generations to come. Indeed, how unlikely was Israel’s rebirth, how more unlikely it’s been her survival and prosperity and how confounding and against all odds has been her thriving. … In 70 years, Israel has transformed itself into a fountainhead of innovation and entrepreneurship producing astounding technological advances in nearly all fields of human endeavor. In a word, Israel is like a tree that’s grown deep roots in the soil of its forefathers, yet as it grows, reaches ever closer to the heavens, it gives shade and sustenance to all who seek shelter under it, the living testament to the power of freedom and the power of faith. Because the story of Israel is a story of faith. The Jewish people held fast to a promise through all the ages … that even if you had been


banished to the most distant land under the heavens, from there he will gather you and bring you back to the land which your fathers possessed. Through a 2000-year exile, the longest of any people anywhere, through conquest and expulsions, inquisitions and pogroms, the Jewish people held onto this ancient promise and they held onto it through the longest and darkest of nights — a night Elie Wiesel proclaimed as seven times sealed, a night that transformed the small faces of children into smoke under a silent sky; a night that consumed the faith of so many and the challenges of faith of so many still. To this day, we grieve the loss of six million martyrs of the Holocaust and to this day, we marvel at the faith and resilience of a sacred and broken people once scattered who, just three years after walking through the valley of the shadow of death, rose up to reclaim a Jewish future and rebuild a Jewish state. And in this 70th anniversary year of Israel’s rebirth, I say again, along with Jewish people everywhere, thanks to the L-rd our G-d who has kept us alive and sustained us and brought us to this day, shehecheyanu vekiymanu vehigi’anu lazman hazeh. The miracle of Israel is an inspiration to the world, and the United States of America is proud to stand with Israel and her people as allies and cherished friends. So tonight, I close with faith, faith in the good people of Israel and America and in the immutable bonds of friendship between us. Faith in the alliance between our nations nurtured by President Trump and leaders throughout the Congress in both parties that have ensured this alliance is stronger now than ever before. And faith in G-d that he will yet forge a brighter future where each can sit under their own vine and fig tree and none shall make them afraid in the Promised Land. …

The U.S. will never allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon.

Haley: Days of bullying Israel at U.N. are ending Excerpts from Ambassador Nikki Haley’s address to AIPAC on Monday night: n the real world, Israel is a strong country with a vibrant economy and a first-class military. On the battlefield, Israel does not get bullied. The Iranians and Syrians can vouch for that. But the U.N. is a different story. At the U.N. and throughout the U.N. agencies, Israel does get bullied. It gets bullied because the countries that don’t like Israel are used to being able to get away with it. … As many of you know, one of the U.N. agencies with the worst track record of Israel bias is UNESCO. Among many other ridiculous things, UNESCO has the outrageous distinction of attempting to change ancient history. UNESCO recently declared one of Judaism’s holiest sites, the Tomb of the Patriarchs, as a Palestinian heritage site in need of protection from Israel. That was enough. Ten months into this administration, the United States withdrew from UNESCO. There are lots of other things that we do, big and small, week after week, to fight back against the U.N.’s Israel bullying. Every month at the Security Council we have a session devoted to the Middle East, and every month this session becomes an Israel-bashing session. This has gone on month after month for decades. … I came out of the first session and publicly said if we want to talk about security


in the Middle East, we should talk about Iran or Syria or Hezbollah, Hamas, ISIS, the famine in Yemen. There are probably 10 major problems facing the Middle East and Israel doesn’t have anything to do with any of them. Just about every month since then in the Middle East session I have spoken about something other than Israel [and] what used to be a monthly Israelbashing session, now at least has more balance. … Before I arrived at the U.N., like most Americans, I knew what the capital of Israel was. To be more clear, I knew that Jerusalem was, is, and will always be the capital of Israel. … This was not something that was created by the location of an embassy. This is not something that was created by an American decision. America did not make Jerusalem Israel’s capital. What President Trump did, to his great credit, was recognize a reality that American presidents had denied for too long. … Sometime in the future, the day will come when the whole world recognizes that fact. In the meantime, I hope to be there and join our great Ambassador David Friedman on the day when we open our brand-new American embassy in Jerusalem. … ome people accuse us of favoritism towards Israel. First of all, there’s nothing wrong with showing favoritism toward an ally. That’s what being an ally is all about. Continued on next page

Israel is not a temporary, provisional entity.


Excerpts from Senator Charles Schumer’s address to AIPAC on Monday night: any wonder: Why don’t we have peace in the Middle East?… There are some who argue the settlements are the reason there’s not peace, but we all know what happened in Gaza. Israel voluntarily got rid of the settlements there, the Israeli soldiers dragged the settlers out of Netzarim, and three weeks later the Palestinians threw rockets into Sderot. It’s sure not the settlements that are the blockage to peace. Some say it’s the borders … but they forget during the negotiations in 2000, Ehud Barak was making huge territorial concessions that most Israelis didn’t like [and] it was Arafat who rejected the settlement. It’s not the borders either. And it’s certainly not because we’ve moved the embassy to where it should belong in Yerushalayim. It’s not that either. Now, let me tell you why, my view, we don’t have peace. Because the fact of the matter is that too many Palestinians and too many Arabs do not want any Jewish state in the Middle East. … Now, the rest of my speech I want to address to you one of the great problems that Israel faces in the future, not immediately, but in the future, but we have to worry about it. … Too many of our younger generations don’t share the devotion to Israel that our generations have. … Too many of the younger Americans don’t know the history and, as a result, they tend to say both sides are to blame. Many Americans, younger Americans didn’t grow up knowing Israel was attacked time after time. They think Israel has always been strong. They do not realize that if Israel were weak, her enemies would immediately seek her destruction. I remember being in [James Madison] high school … during the ‘67 War in June ‘67, and I was deathly worried that Israel would just be pushed into the sea by the Arab onslaught. … The younger generation never experienced this. They haven’t lived through a time when Israel’s very existence was balanced on the edge of a knife. … he world draws a false moral equivalence between Israel’s actions to defend herself and the actions of terrorists who use children as human shields in their evil campaign to push Israel into the sea. The unfairness springs from a deep well of bias that has always existed, unfortunately, against Eretz Yisrael. If only the younger generation knew more about this unfairness, I believe it would affect them powerfully. And there are two things we can do immediately that will help rectify this situation. First, we must pass and highlight the Taylor Force Act, which will bring an end to American dollars that directly benefit a Palestinian Authority until it ceases making payments to the families of terrorists. … While Israel justifiably defends its borders, the PA celebrates and compensates terrorists as martyrs. Second, we must continue to stand firm against the profoundly biased campaign to dele-


gitimize the State of Israel through boycotts divestment and sanctions. While Iran publicly executes its citizens, Turkey jails its journalists, scores of Arab nations punish homosexuality with imprisonment and torture, why does BDS single Israel out alone for condemnation? … There’s only one word for it — anti-Semitism. Let us call out the BDS movement for what it is. Let us delegitimize the delegitimizers by letting the world know when there is a double-standard; whether they know it or not, they are actively participating in an anti-Semitic movement. And finally, my friends, we must highlight the danger that Israel faces from a newly-resurgent Iran now so active in Syria. … Last summer Congress, Democrats and Republicans together, granted the administration new authority to counter Iran’s malign activity. Now it must use it not only to combat Iran, but to push Russia to repel Iranian proxies in Syria. We can never be complacent about any threat near Israel’s borders and Iran is a threat right now. … s a boy, I grew up hearing stories about my greatgrandmother in the town of Chortkiv, in Galicia. In 1941, the Nazis invaded her part of Galicia. They told my greatgrandmother to gather her whole family on the front porch of their house, from elderly people to little babies. There were more than 17 of them. They said you all have to leave. My grandmother said no. And the Nazis brutally machine-gunned down every single one of them. Now, my great-grandmother … could never imagine that one day there would be a country for Jews. The idea seemed like an absurdity in that world. Jews had been scattered to the winds, foreigners in their own country, derided by their neighbors, forbidden to farm or become academics or tradesmen. We were scapegoats, we were second-class citizens throughout our history. … Imagine if you could tell the Russian Jew, chased from town to town by angry mobs and burning torches, that one day he’d have a state where he could seek refuge and live like anybody else. Imagine if you could whisper to the Polish Jew, who they came for one day and loaded on a train, separated from his family, forced to labor day after day and watch those wreaths of smoke rising under a silent blue sky, imagine if you could tell him one night that someday soon there would be an Eretz Yisrael, that after two millennia of wandering the desert, the Jewish people would return home where we could live in freedom and raise families in peace. If only we could tell them. My friends, we must never forget what Israel and its freedom mean to the Jewish people and what the friendship of the United States means to securing that freedom. As long as Hashem breathes air into my lungs, I will not forget, I know you will not forget, and together we will forever fight to protect the Jewish people and the Jewish State of Israel. Am Yisrael Chai! Am Yisrael Chai!

Too many younger Americans don’t know the history.



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of refugees throughout the world is counted in a way that causes the number to grow forever. It cannot be the case that in an organization with 193 countries, the United Nations spends half of its time attacking only one country. We will not accept it any longer. And you know what? That demand is actually a demand for peace. The U.N.’s bias against Israel has long undermined peace by encouraging an illusion that Israel will just simply go away. Israel’s not going away. When the world recognizes that, then peace becomes possible. It becomes possible because all sides will be dealing with realities, not fantasies, and when we deal with realities, then reasonable negotiated compromises can prevail over absolutist demands.


THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

Continued from previous page But this is really not about favoritism. In all that we’re doing, whether it’s the embassy decision or UNESCO, or what we’re doing with UNWRA — don’t even get me started on that one — our approach on Israel is tied together by one major idea, the idea that runs through all of it is the simple concept that Israel must be treated like any other normal country. We will continue to demand that Israel not be treated like some sort of temporary, provisional entity. It cannot be the case that only one country in the world doesn’t get to choose its capital city. It cannot be the case that the U.N. Human Rights Council has a standing agenda item for only one country. It cannot be the case that only one set

March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


‫כוכב של שבת‬


It is ‘G-d’s terumah’ because it belongs to Him Rabbi avi billet

Parsha of the week


t the very beginning of his instructions about the construction of the Mishkan, Moshe says to the people regarding their terumah (donations), “Take from yourselves terumah to G-d, all those who are giving of heart should bring the Terumah of G-d, gold, silver and copper” (35:5). Two questions come to mind. First, why are they first told to “take” terumah, and then told to “bring” terumah? Second, what is the difference between “terumah to Hashem” and “terumah of Hashem?” Kli Yakar (35:5) explains that how terumah is collected and subsequently processed and utilized is very much informed by the thought process of the giver. One who does not give of his own will ‬is clearly not thinking the way one should be thinking — which is, “I’m not giving what is mine but I am giving what already belongs to G-d, for all the silver and gold is His (but is merely on loan to me).” Rather, he is mistaken in his thinking, thinking that he is solely re-

sponsible for his success. This is why it says “Take from yourselves terumah to G-d.” From those who think it’s actually theirs, you have to “take it for Hashem,” thus forcibly returning it to its rightful owner. But those who give from the heart, those who know that everything they have is a gift from the Holy One Blessed is He, those donations of precious metals fit into the phraseology of “should bring the terumah of G-d.” It is essentially brought by itself because it is returning on its own to where it belongs. This is why it is called the terumah of G-d, because it already belongs to G-d. n 36:3, when after the people actually begin to bring their donations, the verse says “And they brought to him more pledges in the morning in the morning.” Two more questions are raised. What is the need for the word od (more)? And why is the word baboker (in the morning) repeated? Od is the additional sign seen in the people who brought and gave their donations with joy. As the Kli Yakar explains:


1. They gave of their own initiative, before the Gabbai of Collections came to collect what they had already pledged to give. 2. When they came in the morning, they came with a bright countenance. The morning is a time when people give with a smile. he phrase “in the morning” is repeated, therefore, because one time represents their smiling when giving, a proverbial sunshine that accompanies a smiling countenance, and the second baboker was a nod to those who were punctilious to be the first to come to give in the morning. Each of us must answer the question. Am I the type of person from whom the contribution needs to be taken from me such as through a building fund assessment, or repeated billing? Or am I the type of person who is the true giver from the heart, the one who gives or redeems my pledge before the Gabbai of Collections comes calling. The one who gives with a smiling countenance? Who says, “My money

Terumah is brought by itself, returning on its own to where it belongs.


is not really mine anyway.” The one who follows the path of “bringing” because it belongs here. It is “the terumah of G-d” because it already belongs to G-d. Anything I use for myself is His gift to me. But I am by nature a giver, returning these funds to a place that helps service my needs vis-a-vis my Creator (to my shul, perhaps). And how does one do this? Sometimes it’s hard to write out a check for a few hundred dollars. For $1000 or more. We all have our budgets, our operating expenses, etc. Around 8 years ago I created a separate checking account for giving, and I siphon off 10 percent of all “money in” to that account. Then it’s not mine anymore. I can give it to the indigent, to the needy, to the organizations I wish to support, without batting an eye. It’s not my money! I am merely its distributor. It is the Terumah of G-d. This kind of siphoning and giving should be done “in the morning in the morning,” in other words, as soon as possible after the money comes in. Whatever cause you support, a shul, a school, an organization, be the first to give, and give with a smile. We all only benefit from giving when we can, what we can afford, and giving often.

On Shabbat, finding a closeness to Hashem Rabbi david etengoff


ur parshiot, Vayakel-Pekudei, begin with the construction of the Mishkan (the portable desert sanctuary): “Moses called the whole community of the children of Israel to assemble, and he said to them: ‘These are the things that the L-rd commanded to make’.” Our immediate expectation would be for the Torah to begin to list all of the details pursuant to building the Mishkan. This is the case, for example, in the beginning of Parashat Terumah wherein we find precisely this manner of presentation. Our parasha, however, deviates from this approach. Instead of launching into a discussion of the constitutive elements of the Mishkan, the Torah “interrupts itself” with two verses that speak about the sanctity of Shabbat: “Six days work may be done, but on the seventh day you shall have sanctity, a day of complete rest to the L-rd; whoever performs work thereon [on this day] shall be put to death. You shall not kindle fire in any of your dwelling places on the Sabbath day.” (Shemot 35:2-3) Rashi, basing himself upon the Mechilta, the halachic Midrash to Shemot, provides us with a rationale for the inclusion of these two seemingly incongruous pasukim: “Six days He [Moses] prefaced [the discussion of the details of] the work of the Mishkan with the warning to keep the Sabbath, denoting that it [i.e., the work of the Mishkan] does not supersede the Sabbath.” In sum, the Torah is teaching us that even the construction of Hashem’s dwelling place on earth must cease at the onset of this most consecrated of all days.


ach of us experiences Shabbat and its kedushah in our own unique fashion. Many of us have a favorite Shabbat time. For some, it is the Friday evening meal that is preceded by Lecha Dodi in shul, and ushered in amid the singing of Shalom Aleichem and Aishet Chail. For others, it is the morning tefilah service in synagogue, and the Torah reading, followed by the second meal. Personally, I am most deeply affected by the final meal of the day, Seudat Shlishit, which, perhaps, is best viewed as the last bastion of kedushah that separates us from weekday activities and their attendant uncertainties and anxieties. Speaking personally, it is the time when I most experience the neshamah yeteirah (the extra soul) that the holiness of Shabbat bestows upon us. The singing of Mizmor l’David (Psalm 23), Yedid Nefesh and the accompanying divrei Torah often transport me to my highest spiritual heights, and create a transformative moment that helps me strengthen my bonds Hakadosh Baruch Hu. Many have suggested that Mizmor l’David, in particular, captures the ideal essence of the Jewish religious experience. It speaks of peace, serenity, and inner calm: “A song of David. The L-rd is my shepherd; I shall not want. He causes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even when I walk in the valley of darkness, I will fear no evil for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff - they comfort me. You set a table before me in the presence of my adversaries; You anointed my head with oil; my cup overflows. May only goodness and kind-

ness pursue me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the L-rd for length of days.” y rebbe and mentor, the Rav (Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik zatzal), depicted the relationship that obtains between Seudat Shlishit and Psalm 23 in his seminal work, Halakhic Man: “It is true that during the third Sabbath meal at dusk, as the day of rest declines and man’s soul yearns for its Creator and is afraid to depart from the realm of holiness whose name is Sabbath, into the dark and frightening, secular workaday week, we sing the psalm ‘The L-rd is my shepherd; I shall not want, He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; He leadeth me beside the still waters etc., and we believe with our entire hearts in the word of the psalmist’.” In the Rav’s view, while this psalm describes the ultimate goal of peace and serenity for a religious being, the path leading to this destination “is not, at the outset, a refuge of grace and mercy.” In his estimation, the path of religion in general, and Judaism in particular, “is not the royal road, but a narrow, twisting footway that threads its course along the steep mountain slope.” Judaism, when lived to its fullest, when approached with intellectual daring and candor, helps one navigate “the straits of inner oppositions, and incongruities, spiritual doubts and uncertainties.” Life, then, for the thinking religious Jew, may very well be a challenging journey filled with the trials and tribulations of a searching soul. Little wonder then, that we yearn for the ultimate tranquility portrayed by King David in Mizmor l’David, and that the psalm is sung


We each experience Shabbat’s kedushah in our own fashion.

during the waning hours of the seventh day when we are infused with the Shabbat’s singular holiness. With the Almighty’s help, may we be zocheh to encounter the spiritually-transforming potential of Shabbat, and thereby achieve the closeness to Hashem we so strongly desire. V’chane yihi ratzon.


Fri March 9 • 22 Adar Shabbos Mevarchim Parshas Parah Vayakhel-Pekudei Candlelighting: 5:37 pm

Havdalah: 6:47 pm

We move clocks ahead Saturday nite

Fri March 16 • 29 Adar Rosh Chodesh Nisan Parshas HaChodesk • Vayikra Candlelighting: 6:44 pm

Havdalah: 7:54 pm

Fri March 23 • 7 Nisan Shabbos HaGadol Parshas Tzav Candlelighting: 6:52 pm

Havdalah: 8:02 pm

Fri March 30 • 14 Nisan Friday is Taanis Bechoros First Seder Friday night Friday candlelighting: 6:59 pm

Saturday candlelighting: 8:00 pm Sunday Havdalah: 8:10 pm

Five Towns times from the White Shul

AlAn JAy GErbEr

Kosher BooKworm


his week I continue to focus on the scholarship of Rabbi Baruch Dov Braun of DRS High School of Woodmere, with “A Visit to the Egyptian Zoo,” thematically keyed to the upcoming Pesach festival of freedom. According to Rabbi Braun’s teachings, “When Moses is asked by G-d to confront Pharaoh and redeem Am Yisrael, he demurs because of his inability to speak clearly. … Yet 40 years later, he delivers one of the greatest speeches ever given. … “The midrash attributes the dramatic change in Moshe to the healing effects of the Torah’s language. … What emerges from this midrash is that the Torah doesn’t simply tell us what to do, but provides us with a language with which to make sense of the world and communicate that understanding to others.”

A Visit to the Egyptian Zoo

By Rabbi Baruch Dov Braun

was arov, wild animals. “If you don’t send My people,” warns Hashem, “I will send the swarm of wild beasts (arov); and the houses of Egypt shall be filled with the swarm (ha’arov), and even the ground upon which they are.” The Be’er Yosef was bothered why Moshe uses the term “arov” to express the coming of wild animals. Why doesn’t Moshe name the plague directly, the way he does by dam, tzefardeia, and kinim? Why doesn’t Moshe simply warn Pharaoh that if he doesn’t let the Jewish people go, Egypt will come under the attack of chayos ra’os (wild beasts)? This isn’t the only difference between this plague and the ones that precede it. Only here does Hashem stress that, with this plague, a clear distinction will emerge between the Egyptians and Jews: “And on that day I shall set apart the land of Goshen upon which My people stands, that there shall be no swarm there; so that you will know that I am Hashem in the midst of the land. … I shall make a distinction between My people and your people —tomorrow the sign will come about!” he problem with this idea is that all the previous plagues similarly differentiated and discriminated between Egyptian and Jew. Unlike the Egyptians, the Jews had untainted water to drink. No frogs pestered them. No lice infested them. There were already so many differences: Why would Hashem single out the plague of arov as an indicator of difference between the Egyptians and Jews? In parashas Bereishis, Rav Shimshon Raphael Hirsch is bothered why Hashem designates humans with the name, “Adam.” Ostensibly, the name is linguistically derived from the word “adamah,” and since man was formed from the dust of the earth, humans are fittingly called, Adam. The problem with this approach, says Rav Hirsch, is that animals, too, emerged from the adamah. Because of this difficulty, Rav Hirsch is compelled to find some other etymological source for the word, adam. The Netziv, Rabbi Naftali Zvi Yehuda Berlin, however, resolves Rav Hirsch’s dilemma without altering the meaning of the word adam. When Hashem creates man, the Torah records, “Then Hashem, G-d, formed man out of dust from the ground.” Rashi, quoting the midrash, comments that when Hashem gathers dust from the ground to form man, He gathers it from all four corners of the earth. The Netziv explains that the midrash is conveying a fundamental difference between man and animal: Animals are designed to inhabit a specific environment, a particular habitat. Man, on the other hand, is not limited to a specific environment. While it is true that animals were formed from the earth, each species was formed exclusively from the earth of their respective habitats. Man, in contrast, was fashioned from the earth of all the various

Who is Hashem, that I should hearken to His voice to let Israel go?

Not too long ago, the London Zoo hosted a special exhibit: homo sapiens. The exhibit, which lasted four days, displayed three male and four female homo sapiens (actual people!) next to their primate “relatives,” separated by an electric fence. As with all zoo exhibits, a sign educated visitors about the species’ diet, natural habitat, worldwide distribution, and the threats to its survival. A spokeswoman for the London Zoo, Polly Wills, explained the impetus behind the exhibit. “Seeing people in a different environment, among other animals,” Wills said, “teaches members of the public that the human is just another primate.” The group of eight was chosen from an online contest that drew 30 candidates. At the exhibit they were seen relaxing in the sun, at play with balls and hula hoops, and eating. Rest assured, they were, of course, allowed to leave and go home at closing time. One of the participants, Tom Mahoney, 26, was inspired to get involved in order to generate more sympathy and support for our fellow primates. “A lot of people think humans are above other animals,” Mahoney said. “When they see humans as animals, here, it kind of reminds us that we’re not that special.” his pervasive and pernicious view, that we are not fundamentally different than animals, is not a new one. It has plagued and hindered mankind for millennia. It’s an attitude that existed in Egypt, and one expressed by Pharaoh himself. However, before we get to Pharaoh, the human at the center of the story of Egypt, Let us begin with the animals. The fourth plague suffered by the Egyptians



surfaces, heights, and climates of the globe. Consequently, man, alone, is uniquely “the creature of the adamah,” and rightfully called, Adam. This fundamental distinction between man and animal can help us appreciate the uniqueness of the fourth plague, arov. he Be’er Yosef suggests that Moshe uses the word arov, which literally means a mixture, to describe the plague, because the novelty of the plague was not the manipulation of wild beasts but the swarming of wild beasts, an effect created by the mixture of diverse species of animals. During arov, various species — the lion, polar bear, anaconda, etc. — each one needing its own distinct habitat to survive, converged on a single location, Egypt, with its unique environment only suited for particular creatures. Hashem, though, Rabbi Baruch Dov Braun doesn’t miraculously enable the animals to survive despite Egypt’s climate. Rather, the plague will affect “even the ground upon which the animals are.” It is fascinating to note that when the wild animals converged on Egypt, the conditions of their natural habitat came with them. For example, ice and cold followed the polar bear and a tropical climate followed the anaconda. Not only did the wild animals ravage the population and produce, the sudden and drastic climate change destroyed the land of Egypt, too. In light of the Netziv’s insight above, it follows that Hashem’s elaborate scheme is executed not merely to damage the land of Egypt, but to drive home a devastating message to the Egyptians and Pharaoh. When Moshe first encounters Pharaoh and delivers Hashem’s message to let His people go, Pharaoh responds, “Who is Hashem, that I should hearken to His voice to let Israel go? I know not Hashem, and moreover I will not let Israel go.” The midrash understands that Pharaoh’s response is not only an expression of impudence, but of actual ignorance. Pharaoh, says the midrash, had a book cataloguing all the known deities, but when he searched the book upon Moshe’s arrival, there was no entry for Hashem. Some explain the meaning of the midrash on a figurative level: Hashem is a different kind of G-d, fundamentally unlike the types of deities Pharaoh’s culture worshipped. If one were to catalogue all the gods into a book, for the sake of internal coherence, Hashem would be intentionally left out. Because He is conceptually different, Hashem needs His own book. olytheism is a system of local deities. The idolatrous Egyptians, by serving their local gods, limit themselves to a specific habitat. By doing so, they make themselves out to be like



animals, no different than other primates, and divest themselves of the name Adam. Hashem, however, is a transcendent G-d. He is One and He is everywhere. Consequently, His people who serve Him are not limited by a specific environment, but can live anywhere. His people, therefore, are truly Adam. This fundamental distinction between us and pagans is alluded to in Sefer Yechezkel, which states, “Now you, My sheep, sheep of my pasture — you are Adam; I am your G-d.” The Gemara infers from the pronoun, “you,” that only you, Bnei Yisrael, are called, Adam; pagans, however, are not called, Adam. Arov is singled out as being the plague that differentiates between Egyptians and Jews because its design — the swarm and mixture of various wild animals that descended on the Egyptians, each one accompanied by the conditions of its own natural habitat — taught its victims in a vicious way, that they, indeed, were not special. They behaved like animals and, thus, were no different than them. The Jews, however, were very different. hroughout the ages, despite the fact that we have been scattered throughout the four corners of the earth, we have survived and thrived. Every time we have had to go to and settle in some place, only to pick up again and leave to another place on the globe — from Babylon to Shushan to Berlin, to Paris, Montreal, and New York — we have demonstrated that Hashem, our G-d, is everywhere. There are shuls and batei midrash everywhere we have been, proof that we can maintain a close, personal, and unique relationship with our transcendent G-d, anywhere. For, we are Adam. We are not just another primate. We are indeed special. The navi, Yechezkel, in the same perek quoted above, using the same imagery and metaphor of a shepherd and his flock, continues: “For thus says my Lord, Hashem: Behold! I am here, and I shall seek out My sheep, and I will investigate them. As a shepherd tends his flock on the day that he is among his scattered sheep. so I will investigate My sheep and rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on the day of clouds and darkness. I shall bring them out from the nations and gather them from the lands and bring them to their ground. Upon good pasture I will shepherd them, and upon the heights of Israel’s mountains their fold will be. There they will lie down in a good fold and upon fat pastures they will graze on the mountains of Israel.” Despite being flung to all four corners of the earth, Hashem promises us that from all of our scattered places, He will gather us and bring us back to our most suitable habitat, to our homeland, the Land of Israel.


Shul Jews: Thoughts for Shabbat Vayakhel-Pekudei rAbbi mArc d. AnGEl


hat role does the synagogue play in people’s lives? Here are several models. The ‘hospital’ synagogue: This refers to people who come to the synagogue in emergencies — at a time of crisis, illness, death of a loved one. Normally, they avoid the synagogue; but they turn to it in moments of need. The synagogue is akin to a hospital — a place they generally avoid, and only attend in dire situations. The ‘museum’ synagogue: This refers to those who visit the synagogue for the nostalgic

qualities it offers. They enjoy experiencing the old relics of religion, and feel culturally enriched by their visits. They attend on holidays or other special occasions, as a social/cultural obligation. The synagogue is akin to a museum, a building that houses old things and old memories. The ‘entertainment hall’ synagogue: This refers to those who attend synagogue because they have a good time there; they meet friends; they hear nice music; they listen to a sermon; they enjoy the kiddush following services. They want the synagogue to entertain them, to come up with new melodies and new programs. If the synagogue ceases to entertain them, they stop attending, or they go to another synagogue that they find more entertaining. While the above models each has its role, the following model is the most important.

The ‘sacfed space’ synagoguge: This refers to those who are seeking communion with the eternal, ineffable G-d. They come to synagogue often, and in a spirit of yearning. When they enter the sanctuary, they feel the power of the “sacred space.” They sit humbly, quietly, thoughtfully. They absorb the atmosphere; they savor their words of prayer; they lose themselves in meditation. They have not come to synagogue because of an emergency crisis; nor to experience the museum-like qualities; nor to be entertained. They have come for something far different: they have come to commune with G-d, to understand themselves, and transcend themselves. The Torah portions of recent weeks have focused on the building of the Mishkan, the wilderness sanctuary of the ancient Israelites.

G-d commanded the building of the sanctuary so that “I may dwell among them.” A sanctuary is a sacred space: it is sacred by virtue of our sanctifying it, and our receptivity to having G-d dwell among us. When we enter a synagogue, we should do so reverently, humbly, thoughtfully. The synagogue is not a hospital, or a museum, or an entertainment hall. It is a sacred space. “Happy are those who dwell in the house of the L-rd.” Having the proper mindset is essential to a meaningful synagogue experience. If we understand what it is to be in a sacred space, we begin to understand what it means to have G-d dwell among us — and within us. Rabbi Angel is interim spiritual leader of the Lido Beach Synagogue and rabbi emeritus of the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue.

THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

Before Pesach, a literary visit to an Egyptian zoo


March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


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Where are the headlines denouncing Farrakhan? Jeff Dunetz politics to go


hen David Duke, former Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, announced his support of Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign, the mainstream media practically tripped over their underwear as they rushed to condemn the future president, because it fit their narrative that Trump was a bigot. Trump renounced the endorsement — but that did not stop the questions. Recently released pictures and videos revealed that former President Obama and other Democrats including California Reps. Maxine Waters and Barbara Lee and Texas Rep. Al Green and 17 other Democratic members of Congress had very friendly meetings with racist, anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan. And the deputy chairman of the Democratic Party, Keith Ellison, has had a

close relationship with the life-long bigot. “These false Jews promote the filth of Hollywood that is seeding the American people and the people of the world and bringing you down in moral strength,” Farrakahn said in a speech on Saviours’ Day, the Nation of Islam holiday, on Feb. 26, 2006. “It’s the wicked Jews, the false Jews, that are promoting lesbianism, homosexuality. It’s the wicked Jews, false Jews, that make it a crime for you to preach the word of G-d, then they call you homophobic!” Last Sunday, in his latest Saviours’ Day speech, Farrakhan crowed, “The government is my enemy, the powerful Jews are my enemy, and scared-to-death Negroes are my enemy, and weak Muslims and hypocrites are my enemy! … White folks are going down. And Satan is going down. And Farrakhan … has pulled the cover off of that Satanic Jew and I’m here to say your time is up, your world is through.” Farrakhan discussed Rep. Ellison, confirming that Ellison was a disciple, something that was known but downplayed by the congressman. “He wanted to help his community. He want-


Louis Farrakhan at Mosque Maryam in Chicago on March 31, 2011. Scott Olson/Getty Images

ed to be a congressman, so when the Jews found out that he was in the Nation [they demanded he denounces Farrakhan]. Keith [Ellison] was in the Nation in 1995. He was selling the Final Call newspaper, a beautiful brother.” Ellison’s work with Farrakhan and other antiSemites was exposed when he was running for chairman of the Democratic party.

House of Windsor’s Israel problem Ben Cohen Viewpoint


ueen Elizabeth II is marking her 66th year of reign in 2018, which by any standard is an extraordinarily long time for a single individual to be a head of state. (By comparison, King David is said to have reigned for 40 years, and Queen Victoria managed 64.) Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any current ruler who has remained in place throughout the Cold War and beyond. In that sense, historians will have a grand second Elizabethan era to pour through, one so lengthy that those things that were features of the first half of her reign — ration books, royal family struggles with the Church of England, a snarling punk ditty by the Sex Pistols that rhymed “queen” with “fascist regime” — were misty memories by the time it came to its close in the age of social media. But for all the momentous historic changes that Elizabeth witnessed, one country — Israel — went stubbornly unacknowledged. Now that Elizabeth’s grandson, Prince William, has announced a first-ever visit by a British royal to Israel, in addition to Jordan and the “Occupied Palestinian Territories,” it is perhaps time to reflect on the relationship, or absence of one, between the House

President George W. Bush toasts Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on May 7, 2007. WH/Eric Draper

of Windsor and the Jewish nation. Part of the delight around William’s impending visit stems from the fact that few people see the royal family as a political entity anymore; getting a visit from a Windsor, the son of the iconic Princess Diana no less, is a moment for one’s national pride to swell in the glow of royal approval. When Elizabeth visited post-Communist Lithuania in 2006, the BBC reported on the

cheering crowds in the capital, Vilnius, waving their own flag alongside the Union Jack. One might imagine that Israelis, having emerged from a similar history of turbulence, would have appreciated a similar opportunity. The point, however, is not simply that the Queen made Lithuanians feel good about themselves. In a speech to the Lithuanian parliament, she saluted all the Baltic nations in explicitly political terms. “You have emerged from the shadow of the Soviet Union and blossomed as sovereign states, taking up your rightful places in the international community and as respected members of the European Union and NATO,” she remarked. “It is a transformation—political, economic and social—for which there are few parallels in the history of Europe.” ords like these should have been heard in the Knesset in Jerusalem. But as far as the Queen and her close relatives were concerned — including her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, whose mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg, saved Greek Jews from the Nazis and is interred on Jerusalem’s Mount of Olives — Israel may as well have not existed. To entirely pin the blame for this unsettling indifference towards Israel on the Arabists at the British Foreign Office, who have been in a state of penance ever since the Balfour Declaration of 1917, would do Elizabeth a great disservice. True, unlike her forebears, her divine right to rule has been severely tempered by the more


arrakhan’s hatred isn’t the only issue. Whenever a bigoted nut-job announces support of President Trump, Democrats and the mainstream media rush to interview every Republican they can find to ask, “Why won’t the president denounce——?” David Duke and the Charlottesville neo-Nazis were only two of the many examples. But when Democrats display a close relationship with haters, the only thing one hears from the mainstream media is the sound of crickets. Former President Obama associated with Al Sharpton who led two anti-Semitic pogroms in New York, he awarded Presidential Medals of Honor to anti-Semites such as Mary Robinson, who led the Durbin Conference, and Desmond Tutu, who declared that Jews think they own G-d and befriended numerous anti-Semites. After Farrakhan spewed hatred on Sunday, senior Democrats such as Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer weren’t asked to denounce him. Farrakhan’s hateful words were reported by the media but his relationship with Democrats was not treated the same way as when a bigot anSee Dunetz on page 23

modern rule of law. But that manifestly does not mean she is a plaything of the British government, blissfully unaware of the soft power and international legitimacy that a royal visit grants. The bald fact remains, then, that a monarch who was crowned when the wounds of the Holocaust were still fresh, who witnessed at least three attempts by Arab states to eliminate the Jewish state and who always maintained a cordial relationship with Britain’s Jewish community, never asserted the importance of a visit to the land where Christianity was born. Yet she made her way to Germany in 1965, at a time when most Britons could still remember the Luftwaffe’s decimation of cities like Manchester, Coventry and London. Most of the Middle East’s autocracies — Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Qatar, Iran under the Shah, Turkey — received a visit, too. There are few major democracies or Western allies that have not received one. It beggars belief that the shrewd Elizabeth has not herself recognized this anomaly, and for whatever reason, has willingly complied with a stance of pretending that Israel doesn’t exist. Even if one could make a realist case that a visit to Israel during the mid-1970s would have been unwise in the face of the Arab oil weapon, what held the royals back in the comparatively more peaceful times of the late 1990s, when Arab leaders and the leaders of Israel’s former Communist enemies made the trip. William will, I am sure, say most of what needs to be said when he arrives in Israel in May. But as you listen to him, do remember that his grandmother should have said exactly the same a long time ago.

stephen M. Flatow


Palestinian state in Israel’s backyard, international control over Jerusalem’s Old City, and the mass expulsion of tens of thousands of Jews from Judea and Samaria: Is this the “price” that President Donald Trump recently hinted Israel would have to pay? According to Arab diplomats cited by the London newspaper Asharq al-Awsat, the Trump plan for the Middle East, soon to be unveiled, includes “U.S. recognition of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital”; the imposition of “international protection” over Jerusalem’s Old City; and the expulsion of many Jews from the territories. Plus, the Palestinian Authority would be given another $40 billion in aid. The Palestinian state would not be precisely along the 1967 lines, but it would be close enough — much too close for comfort. Palestinian terrorists would be within easy striking range of Ben-Gurion Airport and downtown Jerusalem. Israel would be dangerously narrow at its midsection. Jewish residents of the territories near the old 1967 lines would be allowed to stay, according to the plan. But tens of thousands of others would be forcibly expelled. Apparently, it’s a given that the “State of Palestine” could not bear to have any Jews on its soil. There would be no “Palestinian right of return” under Trump’s plan. But that’s not some big concession to Israel; obviously, the Israelis

President Trump with Prime Minister Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport on May 23, 2017. GPO

never would have accepted the idea of millions of Arabs flooding into the Jewish state. Giving up on something you never would have gotten anyway is not giving up on anything. he Trump administration has not yet publicly confirmed that the Asharq al-Awsat report is accurate. But the reported details seem to dovetail with recent statements by the president and his spokespeople. First, there was Trump’s statement at his Feb. 15, 2017 press conference with Prime Minister Netanyahu, saying “I would like you to hold back on settlements for a little bit” — as if Jews living in their historical homeland are somehow an obstacle to peace. Then came the president’s statement in his Feb. 9, 2017 interview with Israel Hayom: “The settlements are something that very much complicates and always have complicated making peace, so I think Israel has to be very careful with the settlements.” Another troubling sign was the president’s


Jan. 2, 2018 tweet: “We have taken Jerusalem, the toughest part of the negotiation, off the table, but Israel, for that, would have had to pay more.” Similarly, he told reporters in Davos on Jan. 25: “I helped it because by taking it off the table — that was the toughest issue — and Israel will pay for that. You won one point, and you’ll give up some points later on in negotiations, if it ever takes place.” The Trump administration has also started using the kind of reprehensible “both sides” rhetoric that was typical of the Obama administration. In his Israel Hayom interview, President Trump said: “I think that both sides will have to make significant compromises in order for achieving a peace deal to be possible. … Right now, I would say the Palestinians are not looking to make peace; they are not looking to make peace. And I am not necessarily sure that Israel is looking to make peace.” Then The Jerusalem Post reported, on Feb. 20, that Trump advisers Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt said of the forthcoming Trump plan that “both sides are going to love some of it and hate some of it.” Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, used almost identical language at a Feb. 22 speech in Chicago: “The plan won’t be loved by either side. And it won’t be hated by either side.” he United States should not be treating Israel and the Palestinian Authority as if they are morally equivalent. Israel is America’s democratic ally. The P.A. is a terror-sponsoring, America-hating totalitarian regime. Israel has spent 70 years surrendering territory, tearing down Jewish communities, releasing dangerous terrorists and stopping military operations prematurely. It should not be expect-


ed to make any more concessions. And what ever happened to all those statements by President Trump and other administration spokesmen that the United States will support whatever solution the Israelis and the P.A. both want? Why should America now present a plan of its own? The only conceivable purpose of such a plan would be to embarrass Israel into accepting it. That’s no way to treat an ally. It’s remarkable that the administration would consider proposing a plan that even remotely resembles what has been reported since the Palestinians have consistently rejected much more generous offers many times in the past. Whether it was the 1947 plan that would have internationalized Jerusalem and given the Arabs large parts of what is Israel today (including much of the Negev and the Galilee), to the reported offers by prime ministers Ehud Olmert and Ehud Barak to give them a Palestinian state close to the 1967 lines, the Palestinians have always responded with “no.” Be that as it may, there is good reason to fear that the Trump administration intends to forge ahead. Friends of Israel need to act now, before the plan is publicly announced and set in stone. American Jewish leaders need to make it clear to the Trump administration that any international control over any part of Jerusalem is unacceptable; that the mass expulsion of Jews from their homes is immoral; and that the creation of a Palestinian state in Israel’s backyard would pose a mortal threat to the Jewish state. Stephen M. Flatow, a vice president of the Religious Zionists of America, is an attorney in New Jersey and the father of Alisa Flatow, who was murdered in an Iranian-sponsored Palestinian terrorist attack in 1995.

Before the ‘plan,’ a comfort zone at AIPAC Jonathan s. tobin


s pro-Israel activists gathered this week in Washington for the annual AIPAC policy conference, there was much speculation about the future of U.S. policy and complaints about the pro-Israel lobby. If the Trump administration proposes a new Middle East peace plan that resembles those put forward by previous administrations — in terms of concessions demanded of Israel and fantasies about the Palestinians wanting peace — that might change the temperature of the relationship between AIPAC and the White House from warm to cool. But until anything like that happens, the love fest between most AIPAC activists and the administration will continue. And that

is exactly what’s behind most of the complaints about AIPAC. For a generation, the lobby has been accused of tilting to the right and serving the interests of Israel’s Likud Party and its allies, as well as the agenda of the Republicans. Those complaints have grown louder in the last year as eight years of conflict between the Netanyahu government and the Obama administration were ended by Trump’s election victory in 2016. President Trump is a stern critic of Obama’s attempt to create a rapprochement with Iran via his nuclear deal that AIPAC did everything it could to oppose. He also discarded Obama’s policy of trying to create more “daylight” between the United States and Israel as part of a vain effort to entice the Palestinians to make peace that ran counter to the lobby’s efforts to keep the two allies as close as possible. Just as important, Trump kept his promise about recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Ambassador David Friedman cheers Ambassador Nikki Haley at the AIPAC Policy Conference.


he vast majority of American Jews vote Democrat. They aren’t fond of Netanyahu because, in contrast to the broad consensus of voters in Israel that support his policies, they think he isn’t doing enough to make peace possible and dislike his indifference to religious

pluralism. An even larger number of Jews despise Trump. The minority of Jews who are politically conservative and most of the Orthodox community generally support the president. But his proIsrael policies do nothing to lessen the antagonism of the majority that is rooted in antipathy to his temperament and his conservative policies. That creates a dilemma for AIPAC. Unlike most other national Jewish groups that take stands on both domestic and foreign policy, their brief is simple. The point of its existence is twofold: It supports the policies of Israel’s government, no matter which party is in power in Jerusalem; and it seeks to influence the U.S. government to be more pro-Israel, no matter which party is in charge in Washington. This bipartisanship is on display at AIPAC functions, where the group has always bent over backwards to show that it welcomes both Democrats and Republicans. But it’s getting harder to See Tobin on page 23

Tel Aviv’s goofy superhero window cleaners tehilla r. goldberg

view from central park


hen I saw a photo circulating of a tall building with “window cleaners” in the form of superheroes hanging down, my interest was piqued. The caption described superheroes delivering Purim mishlochei manot to children at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv. How sweet and how creative! I assumed it was Photoshopped, but then I saw the video — a live video, with a crowd cheering them on in Hebrew! Superman, Batman and Spiderman swinging mishlochei manot through the hospital windows. Some of those children’s fantasies did material-

ize. Look, it’s a bird, it’s a plane — no, it’s hamantaschen! They were flying through hospital windows into childrens’ hands. Tossed not by static photo heroes or film superheroes, but by real superheroes. That of sense of care and fun can’t be topped. That’s Israel. n the Shabbat preceding Purim, Jews gather in synagogues to hear a brief paragraph read from the Torah that boils down to: Don’t forget what the Amalekites did to you when you were refugees leaving Egypt. It’s a bit of a strange ritual. One would think it healthier to focus on the future, not to dwell on wrongs of the past. Forgive and forget, right? But before Purim, we pause to remember when a descendant of Amalek threatened the first genocide of the Jews. We remember the essence of Amalek — it at-


tacked the Jewish stragglers, the vulnerable. Purim celebrates the relief from the actual physical threat by Amalek’s descendant, but also remembers the original Amalek — the cruelty to the weak, to the ones left behind. The heady joy that is shared with the children at hospitals not only pulls on your heartstrings as an individual but is life-affirming as a society. This is the antithesis of Amalek; this is a society that looks after its vulnerable. Whether or not healing is possible, bringing a smile to a child’s face always is. Maybe laughter and love might just be the best medicine after all. That’s what this photo radiated, the love and laughter you could only imagine a child would feel if the sweet surprise of a Purim basket were tossed at them through their hospital window, as if by an angel from the sky! Copyright Intermountain Jewish News

THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778

The price for Trump’s Israel plan is too high



Send your events to Thursday March 8

Parsha Shiur: [Weekly] Michal Horowitz at the YI of Woodmere. 9:30 am. 859 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 516-295-0950. Iyun Tefilah: [Weekly] Rabbi Moshe Teitelbaum at the Young Israel of Lawrence Cedarhurst. 9:45 am. 8 Spruce St, Cedarhurst. Learn Maseches Brachos: [Weekly] Rabbi Eliyahu Wolf at the YI of Woodmere. 5:15 pm.. Halacha Shiur: [Weekly] Rabbi Yoni Levin at Aish Kodesh. 9:30 pm. 894 Woodmere Pl

Friday March 9

Erev Shabbos Kollel: [Weekly] Eruv Shabbos Kollel starting with 6 am Chassidus shiur with Rav Moshe Weinberger and concluding with 9 am Chevrusah Learning session with Rabbi Yoni Levin. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere.

Saturday March 10

Five Towns Community Shabbaton: See photo caption at left. HALB Annual Dinner: HALB invites you to its 63rd Annual Dinner at its new Woodmere campus. 9 pm. 523 Church Ave, Woodmere.

Sunday March 11

Timely Torah: [Weekly] Join Rabbi Ya’akov Trump, assistant rabbi of the Young Israel of Lawrence-Cedarhurst, for a shiur on relevant Halachic and philosophical topics related to Parsha Moadim and contemporary issues. Coffee and pastries. 8 am. 8 Spruce St, Cedarhurst. Learning Program: [Weekly] At Aish Kodesh led by Rav Moshe Weinberger following 8:15 Shacharis including 9 am breakfast and shiurim on subjects such as halacha, gemara and divrei chizuk. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere.

Gemara Shiur: [Weekly] Rabbi Moshe Sokoloff at YI of Woodmere. 9:15 am. 859 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 516-295-0950. Torah 4 Teens: [Weekly] Yeshiva program for high-school age boys & young adults with Rabbi Matis Friedman. 9:15 am-12:30 pm. 410 Hungry Harbor Rd, Valley Stream. Torah4teens5T@ Cahal Concert: Cahal presents a special concert featuring Uri Davidi, Lipa Schmeltzer and 8th Day at Lawrence High School. Tickets starting at $36. 2 Reilly Rd, Cedarhurst. 516-295-3666. Reaching Our Students: Teach to Reach invites rabbeim and moros from Brooklyn, Queens, Far Rockaway, and The 5 Towns to a special seminar on education at the Sheraton JFK. 3-10 pm. 132-26 S Conduit Ave, Jamaica. 516-295-5700. YCQ Annual Scholarship Dinner: Yeshiva of Central Queens 77th anniversary scholarship dinner at the Sands at Atlantic Beach. 1395 Beech St, Atlantic Beach. 718-7930-500. Rabbi Lazer Brody: CHAZAQ 5 Towns presents Rabbi Lazer Brody with a lecture on Emunah. Admission free. Both men and women are welome. 8pm. 812 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 718-577-2975.

Monday March 12

Women’s Shiur: [Weekly] Dr. Anette Labovitz’s women shiur will continue at Aish Kodesh. 10 am. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere. Seeing Things Clearly: [Weekly] Rabbi Shalom Yona Weis at Aish Kodesh, for for women and high school girls. “Seeing Things Clearly: Learning to View Our World and Lives Through Positive Lenses. 8:45 pm. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere.

Tuesday March 13

Breakfast Connect: [Weekly] Business and networking group that meets for breakfast at

Jumpstart your career! Join LI’s fastest-growing Jewish news team • 6 Tamuz, 5777

• Five Towns Candlelighting

8:11 pm, Havdalah

9:20 • Luach page

19 • Vol 16, No


The Newspaper

of our Orthodox


sustain the next generation

By Celia Weintrob Photos by Doni Kessler

Photo by Doni


note remarks that opened the fourth While Torah is nual an- passed down way for the mesorahforever true, the ideal tive Five Towns Community Collaboraaccording Conference on to be conveyed the time, emphasizing to the middah of children — and Sunday. “What is the Torah how an everlastingto our that the primary of Torah and the kids need now?” ingredent needed in Yiddishkeit is embeddedlove he asked. “What today’s chinuch simcha. their beings — worked in 1972 is in necessarily changes won’t work today.” Twenty-six speakers, “You’re still talking over time. Rabbi Weinberger, about what rebbetzins, educators, including rabbis, for you in 1972 and insisting thatworked d’asrah of Congregationfounding morah ers and community leadwhat should work lecturers that’s Woodmere Aish Kodesh in and mashpia at sue that challengeeach addressed a key isMoshe Weinberger, for your kid,” Rabbi the YU, reminded families and parents Shila”a, said in key- that Torah and educators in attendance frum communities. The event, schools in will not be received the Young Israel hosted at of Woodmere, if it’s not was orgaSee 5 Towns Rabbi Moshe hosts on page Weinberger, of 15 Kodesh in Woodmere, Congregation Aish delivered keynote

STAR speech.

Presenting their topics, from left: Baruch Fogel of Rabbi Touro College, “Motivating our children to motivate themselves”; Reb-


dmere as There’s joy in Woo celebrates new home

Presenters at Sunday’s conference, from left: Elisheva director of religious Kaminetsky, SKA kodesh, “Empoweringguidance, limudei choices”; Rabbi


pages 28–29

• Vol 16, No 34

betzin Shani Taragin, 7:53 • Torah columns Tanach coordinator and mashgicha 6:46 pm, Havdalah nika, and Morah”; ruchanit at Midreshet Towns candles Rabbi • Five rah V’avodah, Ephraim 5777 Congregation Polakoff, don’t”; “Miriam: Meyaledet, To• 24 Elul Bais 15, 2017 Rabbi Jesse Horn Tefilah, “Teens Meiech • Sept. technology: What and kotel, of Yeshivat HaNitzavim-Vayeil you know and ognize your bashert”; what you and “Helping children balance ideology Rabbi Kenneth pleasure”; Esther of Congregation Hain Wein, “How to Beth Shalom, rec- A-OK to “When it’s say yes.”

Reuven Taragin, Yeshivat Hakotel founder and director of Eytan Community Education Feiner of The Conferences, White Shul, “When Yitzchak met “Torah tips on Rivkah: Torah’s Star tion and maintain to build Jewish first menThe how a strong By marriage”; of martial the Hebrew joined love”; Michal Towns “Ahavas in Horowitz, The FiveRabbi Sunday Yisrael: In theory or Long Beach on at its in pracnew Academy of

Super Spec ialS chanukat habayit Avenue in celebrating a on Church elementary school Woodmere. beginnings that the humble

tice?”; Rabbi Moshe Teitelbaum, d’asra, Young mora Israel of Lawrence-Cedarhurst, “Raising successful children”; Rebbetzin Lisa Septimus, yoetzet hala-

The Newspaper

of our Orthodox


investiture follows formal the Emet first is “Torat ‘InvestFest’ fair shiva University,”Truth.” in


Cedarhurst remembers

Star the loss, By The Jewish to remember Cedarhurst pausedmiracles of 9/11, at the the n on Sunday. the heroism, and commemoratio village’s annual Rabbi Shay Schachter of WoodIn his invocation, of the Young Israel the Master and (top right photo) pray that G-d, all the strength mere said, “we world, grant us Creator of the to stand firm together against of and the fortitude of extremism, of bigotry, all forms of terror, and of all evil that can be hatred, of racism, forms in our world.” who found in different obligation to thosenever solemn a have “We 11th to injured on Sept. died or were said Mayor Benjamin but we also forget what happened,” “We saw evil, Weinstock (bottom). America.” of best survivor saw the (middle), a 9/11 78,” reAri Schonburn Fate of “Miracle and waitand author of that day. He was called his experiences on the 78th floor when elevators ing to change hit. Chief the first plane hurst Fire Department Lawrence-Cedar the playing of saluting during victims. David Campell, 9/11 names of local Taps, read the

ceremony, YU’s new president, after the investiture for a selfie. sterdam Avenue who happily posed sought-after celebrity




Arthur James Balfour

t was a minor news story when it broke in the summer of 2016. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas announced he was suing Great Britain over the Balfour Declaration, issued on Nov. 2, 1917. But as we observe the centennial of the document this week, it’s important to understand that although his lawsuit was a stunt, Abbas was serious. More than that, the symbolism of his See Tobin on page 22

photos by Ed

The Jewish Star

& Lulav Sets Island • Etrog


Jonathan S. toBin

or the Palestinians, the year zero is not 1948, when the state of Israel came into being, but 1917, when Great Britain issued, on Nov. 2, the Balfour Declaration—expressing support for the establishment of a “Jewish national home” in Palestine. So central is the Balfour Declaration to Palestinian political identity that the “Zionist invasion” is officially deemed to have begun in 1917—not in 1882, when the first trickle of Jewish pioneers from Russia began arriving, nor in 1897, when the Zionist movement held its first congress in Basel, nor in the late 1920s, when thousands of German Jews fleeing the rise of Nazism chose to go to Palestine. The year 1917 is the critical date because that is when, as an anti-Zionist might say, the Zionist hand slipped effortlessly into the British imperial glove. It is a neat, simple historical proposition upon which the entire Palestinian version of events rests: an empire came to our land and gave it to foreigners, we were dispossessed, and for five generations now, we have continued to resist. Moreover, it is given official sanction in the Palestine National Covenant of 1968, in which article 6 defines Jews who “were living permanently in Palestine until the beginning of the Zionist invasion” as “Palestinians”—an invasion that is dated as 1917 in the covenants’ notes. As the Balfour Declaration’s centenary approached, this theme is much in evidence. There is now a dedicated Balfour Apology See Cohen on page 22


Dealer on Long

Sukkah To Abbas Largest and Hamas, it was ‘original sin’

Ben Cohen


At declaration’s centennial, a source of joy and derision

To British, Palestine just another colony


to an — we believe investiture speech Delivering his Wilf Campus in at YU’sThe Newspaper of our Orthodox communities Berman, with many assembly of 2,000 ty, Rabbi Dr. Ari values that personify YeWashington Heights, in by livestream, that of the “five more listening spoke of the Rabbi Berman the five central “Five Torot, or institution.” teachings, of our believe in Tor“We do not just Chayyim — Torat at Emet but also and values must that our truths he said. live in the world,” teachings, YU’s other central Adam,” “Torat he said, are “Torat Tziyyon, the Chesed,” and “Torat Torah of Redemption.” formal cereFollowing the community parmonies, the YU street fair at an “InvestFest” Am- tied street fair on Amsterdam Avenue. 11 was a along at the “InvestFest” See YU on page Star

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t’ is YU prez: ‘Torat eme

value school’s top core The JEWISH STAR

Jewish of Yeshiva UniversiVayera • Friday, November 3, 2017 • 14 Cheshvan 5778 • Luach page By The president 21 • The fifth Torah columns pages 20–21 VolSunday 16, No 41 said •on

Corbyn boycotts B’four event

Britain Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn— who in 2009 called Hezbollah and Hamas his “friends” — said he would not attend a dinner commemorating the centennial of the Balfour Declaration. Prime Minister Theresa May she would attend “with pride” and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu would be her guest. “We are proud of the role we played in the creation of the State of Israel and we will certainly mark the centenary with pride,” May said. “I am also pleased that good trade relations and other relations that we have with Israel we are building on and enhancing.”

R H STA The JEWIS el ra Is h it w l in efesh’s 56th charter LIers goonal Nefesh B’N

IsraAID brings relief to U.S. disasters

By Ron Kampeas, JTA Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, and WASHINGTON — For 17 years, the then the wildfires in northern California. Israeli NGO IsraAID has been performPolizer recalls that he was wrapping ing search and rescue, purifying water, up a visit to IsraAID’s new American providing emergency medical assistance headquarters in Palo Alto on Oct. 8 and and walking victims of trauma back to was on his way to a flight to Mexico to psychological health in dozens of disas- oversee operations after a devastating ter-hit countries. No 25 earthquake there when he got word of • Vol 16, But no season has been busier than the wildfires. “I literally had Luach page 19 9:15 • to do a Uthis past summer and fall, its co-CEO Yo- turn,” he said Havdalah this week in an interview 8:07 pm, tam Polizer said in an interview — and ting Candleligh at the Israeli embassy in Washington. Polizer spoke with the exhilaration of an executive whose team has come through a daunting challenge. “We’re the people who stay past the ‘aid festival’,” he said, grinning, describing the See IsraAID on page 5



r of our Orthodox




Join 201 olim 927183

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Leah in sec-t. (with mom of Woodmere for Girls in Cedarhurson Feinberg photos School said. More ar-old Elishevah at the Shulamith now there,” she The Jewish Star / Ed Weintrob trip” and a student out. Thirteen-ye came from year-long had been home. magic “on a 30 as olim, to come ond photo) love for Eretz Yisroel Nefesh B’Nefesh’s left Israel of my land. Jonawho flew promised Her parents her family’s journey fulfill “Part was she said. Long Islanders aliyah to the for a enough to flight page 16. through Al’s charter the smiling in” and making he’s waited long will follow,” to do this it’s time, NBN’s El to Israel the first some of “all said she’s wanted family, friends, “Hopefully, everyone t of boarding boarding the move Here are on July 3, going Hills (left) and was land, said excitemen olim, for others Shpage 16 through on July 1 carpet ride of Kew Gardens While the olim on emerged the promised of the and her school, from teaching See. 201 carpet to Her love of Israel for many than Yehoshua holy land, — he retired palpable time. visits to the the dream



wanted her long y, repeated t, she said. “we’ve always aliyah with , making “Why now?” communit Cedarhurs Gardens Hills said ulamith in of Far Rockaway of Kew By Ed Weintrob to the question, Newman Danit Tayri it’s finally time.” the answer For Chani , joinbut now she said. and children, of Woodmere magic to go, husband “We’re Jewish!” Feinberg July 3rd was obvious. ear-old Elishevah B’Nefesh’s Thirteen-y olim on board Nefesh ing 201 other


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• May 26,

2017 • 1

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week • Candleligh

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pm, Havdalah

8:58 • Luach

page 31

• Vol 16,

No 20

√ Web and Social Media

ab ups $10M ER reh role 5T St. John’s

√ HS and College Interns

wedding TheJew on the 70th Bonnie ishStar.c EpisStar reported survivors 93rd om ty News s and St. John’s The Jewish and Shoah The Newspape , the Far residents years ago Herald Communi Last March, Woodmere of Jack Rybsztajn’ Bessen, closed five Rockaway Peninsula y of r of our Orthodox in patients Hospital the By Jeffrey communit On the occasion anniversar hospital on percent jump Rybsztajn. his story continues. ies When Peninsula and Jack to get became the experienced a 35 million on July 12, center was desperatelocated. copal Hospital a $10.15 birthday medical Weintrob obtaining to help complete Jack Rybsztajnrelatives were which Rockaway y services. By Celia a few war ended, emergenc week celebrated nt of Health creating primary After the to Brussels, where cargo trains, during legal using its officials last Departme given on ld hospiSt. John’s New York State that will also include from Stuttgart daring voyages then ultimately sister-in-law s the The 111-year-o Turntwo grant from services renovationacross the street. and arrested, and their future to Brussels Through y at 275 Rockaway headed y center the couple emergenc in a building right for he was discovered . ambulator in Brussels, journey. They had dismay had left on page 14 care space an off-site sites on the peninsula residence the to their See St. John’s Cyla, who tal also operates and similar finally completed kosher restauJack’s sister they arrived. pike in Lawrence to meet s ate at a stating that a one day before wall the Rybsztajn Palestine Brussels, a placard on the looking for anyone While in this was they saw address, wrote to rant, where with a Brooklyn been Rybsztajn , who had survived. Mr. Jacobs, JN who Yechiel Rybsztajn containson of s, a package plus named RYBSZTA he is the afterward Brussels, man, saying nephew. Not long was received in Mr. Jacobs’ and a pair of tefillinto the United States. Rybsztajn ing a tallis g his travel for five years,” which in Belgium were so nice, papers authorizin Brussels “we stayed Poland. So However, gentile people of went through in Shaydels, the “The what we recalled. He mentioned s into their a relief after was such coming to America.” the Rybsztajn on page 7 who welcomed See Shoah we stalled Isaac. a well-to-do couple



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Young Israel Gala Dinner: National Coucil of Young Israel will celebrate the 70th anniversary of the State of Israel at a gala dinner at Terrace on the Park. $500 per couple. 6 pm. 52-11 111 St, Flushing. RSVP

This Sunday, March 11, Yosef the Musical will be staged at 2:30 and 6:30 pm in the Master Theater, 1029 Brighton Beach Ave., Brooklyn. The all-male cast tells the story of Yosef and his brothers according to Torah and meforshim. Proceeds will benefit Madraigos and five other organizations. Visit

son, great-grand holds his he holds his grandson, Jack Rybsztajn in inset below, father. Years earlier, is Isaac’s Marc, who


Thursday March 15

‘Joseph the Musical’ is staged in Brooklyn

The Newspape

Towns nowhere more than in the United States. 5777 • Five Tamuz, “The last few months have been un2017 • 20 believable,” he said, listing a succession • July 14, Parsha Pinchas of disasters that occupied local staff and Niveen Rizkalla working with IsraAID in Santa Rosa, Calif., in volunteers since August: Hurricane Harthe wake of deadly wildfires there. vey in Texas, Hurricane Irma in Florida,


Timely Tanach: [Weekly] Rabbi Ya’akov Trump of Young Israel of Lawrence Cedarhurst for a shiur on Sefer Shoftim. 8 pm. 8 Spruce St, Cedarhurst. Chumash and Halacha Shiur: [Weekly] Shiur with Rabbi Yosef Richtman at Aish Kodesh. 8 pm. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere. Shiur and Tehillim Group: [Weekly] Join the women of YI of Woodmere at the home of Devorah Schochet. 9:15 pm. 559 Saddle Ridge Rd.

√ Ad Sales and Marketing

cha of the Five Towns and of the Great Neck Synagogue, “Where do come from — addressing grown babies ters with children.” up matPhotos by Doni

Wednesday March 14


a small “From years ago in This had over 50 page 8 HALBweek on pageson8-9 See HALB celebration

of YI LawrenceYaakov Trump director From left: Rabbi Shenker, executive Cedarhurst; MarvinWeitz; Dr. Herbert Pasternak; of YILC; Dr. Mott Lance Hirt; and Rabbi Aaron / Theresa Press HALB Board Chair The Jewish Star Fleksher of HALB.

at the YI of Woodmere for a gemara shiu. 9:15 pm. 859 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 516-295-0950.


HALB Photos by Doni

Riesterer’s Bakery and to discuss business and networking opportunities. 7:30-8:30 am. 282 Hempstead Ave, West Hempstead. 516-662-7712. Women’s Shiur: [Weekly] Rebbetzin Weinberger of Aish Kodesh will give a shiur on the “Midah of Seder in our Avodas Hashem.” 11 am. 894 Woodmere Pl, Woodmere. Exploring Sefer Tehillim: Join Michal Horowitz for a seres of lectures on Sefer Tehillim at the Gural JCC. $15. 11:30 am. 207 Grove Ave, Cedarhurst. 516-569-6733 ext. 222. Jewish History: [Weekly] Join Rabbi Evan Hoffman at the YI of Woodmere for a talk on Jewish History. 8:15 pm. 859 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 516-295-0950. Halacha Shiur: [Weekly] Join Rabbi Moshe Sokoloff at the YI of Woodmere for a halacha shiur. 8:40 pm. 859 Peninsula Blvd, Woodmere. 516-295-0950. Gemara Shiur: [Weekly] Rabbi Dr. Aaron Glatt

√ Reporters, Editors and Photographers



This Shabbat, the Five Towns commemorates the 25th yahrtzeit of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik zt”l (left) with a community-wide Shabbaton. Participants from YU’s Rabbi Isaac Eichanan Theological Seminary include: •Rabbi Dr. David Shatz (center) at Bais Tefila following the main 9 am Shacharit minyan (on “The Rav’s Response to the Problem of Evil”) and at YI Woodmere following 5:35 pm Mincha (on “Is Praying for Our Needs Self-Centered?”). •Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter (right) with a drasha at YI of Woodmere following the main 8:45 am minyan, and a 4:50 pm lecture at Irving Place Minyan (on “Majesty and Humility: The Life, Leadership and Legacy of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, zt”l”), followed by Mincha and Seudah Shlishit at 5:35 pm. •Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman (bottom) with 11 am drasha at Beth Sholom, and a lecture (“Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveichik and the World of Tomorrow”) at Seduah Shlishit following 5:20 Mincha at YI of Lawrence-Cedarshurst. •Rabbi Hershel Schachter at Shaaray Tefila with a drasha at the 8:30 and 9 am minyanim, and at Knesseth Israel (White Shul) with a lecture at 4:25 pm followed by Mincha and Seudah Shlishit (5:25 pm).

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• June 30, 2017

5 Towns marks The Rav’s 25th yahrtzeit



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March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


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Continued from page 21 pretend that the pro-Israel community is fully bipartisan. If Democrats are no longer as comfortable with the group as they used to be, it’s not because AIPAC has put itself in the pocket of the Republicans. Rather, it’s due to the fact that the two parties have changed. More than a half-century ago, it was the GOP that was divided on Israel and the Democrats generally united behind it. Now, it’s just the reverse — with Republicans acting like a lockstep pro-Israel party, and the Democrats being the ones who remain deeply divided. There are still plenty of pro-Israel Democrats involved, and the party’s congressional caucus is still largely supportive. But there are more congressional Democrats who are critics of the Jewish state these days, with former Louis Farrakhan supporter and current Democratic National Committee vice chair Keith Ellison being just the most well-known. The decline of support for Israel among party activists remains even more drastic. This trend has been in the works for decades, but it became more pronounced under President Obama, when distancing oneself from Israel on peace and on Iran became a matter of party loyalty for many Democrats. here are many Democrats, especially in “resistance” groups like the Women’s March movement, who are hardcore anti-Israel activists. Others are so angry at Trump that they see any policy he embraces, even the tilt towards Israel, as inherently illegitimate. So while liberals want Jewish groups to distance themselves from Trump, AIPAC’s job is to do just the opposite. Just as it was their obligation to oppose Obama’s efforts to pressure Israel and appease Iran, they have to support pro-Israel policies when they are put in place. Despite the grousing from the left, AIPAC

Dunetz... Continued from page 20 nounces support of President Trump. Where are the headlines saying “denounce Farrakhan!,” “where are the Democrats?,” “why is Ellison silent,” or even, “Do all the Democrats in Congress support the anti-Semitic Farrakhan?” CNN’s Jake Tapper went on a twitter storm denouncing Farrakhan’s hatred. It ended with, “The difference between Farrakhan and some members of the alt-reich whose heinous bigotry has received a lot of attention this past year: Farrakhan has a much larger following and elected officials meet with him openly.” Not all or even most Democrats are antiSemites. But sadly, as the far left continues to take over the party, many are leaning that way. Perhaps that’s why the party is silent (well that,

and the fact that Keith Ellison is its vice-chair). Mainstream media usually ignore anti-Semitism but Farrakhan spews hatred against all white people. So why is the media silent? Is it because they only care about some bigotry? Is it because Farrakahn has a relationship with Democrats, and the bigots who support the president are supporting a Republican? Perhaps it’s because the media hates Trump more than the average Republican? In 2012 when Todd Aken blew his Missouri Senate bid with the extremely stupid comment, “If it’s legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down,” the first question out of most MSM reporters’ mouths when confronting a Republican was, “do you agree with Todd Aken?” Heck even I was asked the question during a radio appearance. Yet a week Louis Farrakhan unleashed his latest hatred upon the world, not one Democrat has been asked if they agree with him. Sometimes media bias has nothing to do with what reporters say, but what they don’t ask.


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23 THE JEWISH STAR March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778


has always been true to these principles. It faithfully backed the Rabin government’s stand after Oslo (though never enthusiastically enough for Rabin’s taste, even though U.S. right-wingers were furious about it), and it cheered when President Bill Clinton embraced the Jewish state. That’s why it is neither reasonable nor right to expect AIPAC to jeer Trump when he keeps his promises. There are many Americans Jews who regard opposing Trump as more important than backing Israel. Others think they help Israel best when they cheer U.S. presidents who try to force it to make concessions that Israeli voters have rejected. For such people, AIPAC isn’t a comfortable fit. But for those who, regardless of their party and ideology, believe supporting the democratically elected government of Israel and helping foster better relations with Washington are sacred obligations, support for AIPAC is still the only possible option. Jonathan S. Tobin is editor in chief of JNS.


March 9, 2018 • 22 Adar 5778 THE JEWISH STAR


The Jewish Star  
The Jewish Star  

March 09, 2018