Of Blessed Memory
Rabbi Mosheh Twersky z”l (from Boston), Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky z”l (from Oak Park, Michigan), Rabbi Avraham Goldstein z’l (from London) and Rabbi Kalman Zeev
Levine z”l (from Kansas City) were brutally murdered this week by terrorist who stormed their synagogue. Also a Druze policeman who was on the scene died the next day from gunshot wounds. Though the demented terrorist were wielding the weapons, complicity is wielded against the leaders who incite this evil via Text Books, Facebook, Social Media and Speeches which subtly and not-so subtly encourage these grass-roots massacres. But the buck doesn’t stop at the incitement, it extends to every moderate Muslim and World Leader who doesn’t condemn this brutality… and the silence is deafening.
Palestinians are portraying these brutal murders as justification for Muslims protection of their holy Jerusalem site, yet there is no defense for any loss of innocent lives suffered at the hands of evil terrorist. Here are some facts about the Temple Mount (the supposed reason for these recent murders).
The Western Wall (known as The Wailing Wall prior to 1967) was the only remaining tangible structure to the ancient Jewish Temple. The Temple stood on the Mount right above The Western Wall. The First Temple was built around 957 BCE. It was destroyed, rebuilt and destroyed again yet the site has always been our most religious focal point.
Throughout the millennium (depending on who controlled the land), Jews have had varying access to The Ancient Temple Site. 600 years after the 2nd Temple’s destruction, a Muslim Shrine was built on the Temple Mount. Today, this space is the Jewish holiest site and Muslim’s 3rd holiest site. Muslims are the only ones allowed to pray there though non-Muslims can visit but never pray on the Temple Mount in accordance with Israeli Law. Yes, Israeli Law which most likely won’t change even with the pressure from the extreme Right Wing Jewish Movement. Until the Moderates on both sides can come to the table and make Peace, these murderous uprisings will sadly continue, but, to reiterate, The World needs louder condemnation especially when we see images of Gazans dancing in the street and passing out candy to children in celebration of these murders and Jordan’s parliament praying for the Jerusalem terrorist heroes.
A bit more history about the region. It was named Palestine 2,000 years ago by the Romans who named it after the Philistines who lived on the land along side the Jews, though the Philistines are long gone. Jews have continuously lived there for thousands of years and as proof of their presence, here is the flag of the region in 1939.
This microcosm of attitude is what we are up against. Now, granted, this experiment took place on the very liberal Berkeley Campus, but the reaction is appalling though sadly not surprising. Check out what happens when a student waves an ISIS flag while expelling pro-ISIS anti-American sentiment versus the reaction he gets while waving an Israeli flag. This 3 minute video reflects the frustrating reality of hatred and bias:
Vienna, Austria is the scene of the Big Iranian Nuclear Talkswhich have an agreement deadline of Nov. 24th. The stakes are high for many including Iran’s economy, Obama’s legacy and Israel’s survival. For everyone’s sake, let’s hope success is achieved.
Art imitated Life which caused prosecution of Life which then provoked more Art… this is the story of the new film,Rosewater directed by Jon Stewart. When The Daily Show aired an interview of Iranian Journalist Maziar Bahari, it caused a scandal, prison and tzuris (Yiddish for misery) for Mr. Bahari. After his release from Iranian incarceration, he penned a memoir of his experience that Jon Stewart (possibly guilt-ridden) directed into a film.
Seth and Aaron
I am a huge Aaron Sorkin fan and love his shows including Sports Night, West Wing and Newsroom and even the short-lived Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. His appearance last week on Late Night with Seth Meyers prompted a very entertaining tribute, parodying a parody, with the Ping Pong dialogue, lofty speeches, romantic interludes and other Sorkin signature styles. If you too are an Aaron Fan, you will love this video:
Hot shots in the world of music are paying tribute to the genius of Paul with the new cover album, Art of McCartney. The likes of Bob Dylan, Smokey Robinson, Brian Wilson, Barry Gibb, B.B. King, Willie Nelson, Yusuf (Cat Stevens), Billy Joel and many more lovingly covers 34 songs (running 2 hours) of Paul’s greatest hits.
Here are 3 of my favorite melodic renditions:
Corrine Bailey Rae singing Bluebird
Yusuf (Cat Stevens) singing The Long and Winding Road:
Billy Joel singing Maybe I’m Amazed:
And here is the Cure, with Paul’s son James on keyboard singing Hello Goodbye:
Wishing you and your loved ones a Pleasant and Peaceful Shabbat Shalom and a fulfilling Thanksgiving*.