31 August 2008

Our Battle is for "Hearts & Minds"

Recently I posted from the latest message given by Binyamin Golden:

"...we do not do what the Torah asks of us. We’re learning and guarding the mitzvot, supposedly, but we are lacking much in the mitzvot that we do. We’re lacking; therefore, Am Yisrael receives a warning. Our Torah, the Torah that we supposedly are learning, and the mitzvot that we are trying to do, are not good enough. Missing from our deeds are the heart and the connection to Hashem. Therefore, we must return in teshuva."

This reminded me of the bracha from the Shmoneh Esreh which we pray three times a day:

השיבנו אבינו לתורתך, וקרבנו מלכנו לעבודתך, והחזירנו בתשובה שלמה לפנך. ברוך אתה ה', הרוצה בתשובה.

"Bring us back, our Father, to Your Torah, and bring us near, our King, to Your service, and influence us to return in complete repentance before You. Blessed are you, Hashem, Who desires repentance."

Our teshuvah is in two parts: 1) To bring the mind back to its Torah base, and 2) To bring the heart back into our avodat Hashem.

Our job is to work on ourselves and to assist fellow Jews, as much as we are able, to 1) rid our minds of the warped values and perverted morals of Western Civilization that we were infected with in the exile and to no longer confuse them with Torah-truth, and 2) to make a real and heartfelt connection to Hashem the goal of our prayers. We should not be seeking to "get" from our prayers as much as we should be seeking to "give" to our Creator. Our goal is to emulate Him and He is the ultimate Giver. If you go into your avodat Hashem wishing to give Him all the honor and praise that is due Him, you will find that the connection to Hashem that you seek is a natural outgrowth of that act of giving.

This is very important to remember, your receiving from Hashem comes as a result of your striving to "give", not to "get."

To return our minds to the true path of Torah (with a willingness to be completely submitted to and obedient to its demands upon us) and to renew in our hearts a right relationship with our Father and King; this encapsulates the whole of our repentance.

I wish all of us much success in our efforts to do a complete teshuvah and merit the geulah shleimah ... finally!

CHODESH TOV~~ SHANAH TOVAH UMETUKAH~~

29 August 2008

Be Aware...

UK Telegraph: Russia May Cut Off Oil Supply to West as Soon as Monday
Fears are mounting that Russia may restrict oil deliveries to Western Europe over coming days, in response to the threat of EU sanctions and Nato naval actions in the Black Sea. Any such move would be a dramatic escalation of the Georgia crisis and play havoc with the oil markets.Reports have begun to circulate in Moscow that Russian oil companies are under orders from the Kremlin to prepare for a supply cut to Germany and Poland through the Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline. It is believed that executives from lead-producer LUKoil have been put on weekend alert. "They have been told to be ready to cut off supplies as soon as Monday," claimed a high-level business source, speaking to The Daily Telegraph . . .

Rigzone: Hurricane Gustav Likely to Explode Into Major Hurricane
Tropical Storm Gustav hasn't deviated from its "very ominous" track toward the U.S. coast of the Gulf of Mexico, and is likely to strengthen into a major hurricane before making landfall, a private forecaster said Thursday. Gustav, currently at tropical storm strength east of Jamaica, is expected to strengthen into a Category 3 or 4 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Government forecasters believe Gustav could make landfall anywhere along the Gulf Coast late Monday or early Tuesday, but Rouiller said the upper Texas or Louisiana coastlines are most in danger. That course would take Gustav through the main energy-producing region of the Gulf, potentially disrupting a quarter of U.S. oil production and about 10% of domestic natural gas output and about 40% of U.S. refining capacity.
SHABBAT SHALOM, CHODESH TOV~~

Taking It Up Another Notch

Military help for Georgia is a 'declaration of war', says Moscow in extraordinary warning to the West

Moscow has issued an extraordinary warning to the West that military assistance to Georgia for use against South Ossetia or Abkhazia would be viewed as a "declaration of war" by Russia.
The extreme rhetoric from the Kremlin's envoy to NATO came as President Dmitry Medvedev stressed he will make a military response to US missile defence installations in eastern Europe, sending new shudders across countries whose people were once blighted by the Iron Curtain.
And Moscow also emphasized it was closely monitoring what it claims is a build-up of NATO firepower in the Black Sea.

The incendiary warning on Western military involvement in Georgia - where NATO nations have long played a role in training and equipping the small state - came in an interview with Dmitry Rogozin, a former nationalist politician who is now ambassador to the North Atlantic Alliance.
"If NATO suddenly takes military actions against Abkhazia and South Ossetia, acting solely in support of Tbilisi, this will mean a declaration of war on Russia," he stated.

Yesterday likened the current world crisis to the fevered atmosphere before the start of the First World War.

Rogozin said he did not believe the crisis would descend to war between the West and Russia.
But his use of such intemperate language will be seen as dowsing a fire with petrol.


...DEBKAfile’s military sources report the Topol RS-12M ballistic missile (NATO codenamed SS-25 Sickle) is a new piece of equipment which Russian generals have said Moscow is working on to pierce any missile shield the US could make.

The ICBM test follows Russia’s warning to NATO against sending more ships to the Black Sea and caution to Moldava to watch its step.

...Wednesday, DEBKAfile reported:

America’s decision to redirect its Georgia aid warship from Russian-controlled Poti port to Georgian-controlled Batumi Wednesday, August 27 – on direct orders from the Pentagon - did not cool the escalating tension between the two powers.

...In Moscow, Col. Gen. Anatoly Nogovitsyn said NATO had exhausted the number of forces it can deploy in the Black Sea under international agreements. He warned Western nations against sending more ships.

...According to DEBKAfile’s military sources, ten NATO warships are present in the Black Sea – American, Turkish, German, Spanish and Polish. Alliance sources have said more vessels would soon be deployed raising the number to eighteen.

28 August 2008

Zeh HaSof

This is it, ladies and gentlemen.


UPDATE: Abbas-Olmert Meeting Sunday Amid Signs of Secret Deal
by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu

(IsraelNN.com) Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will meet on Sunday amid growing signs that the Israeli leader is trying to complete the outline for a new Arab state before he leaves office. PA sources said they will discuss the status of Jerusalem and the PA "right of return" demand that involves allowing millions of foreign Arabs to immigrate. Water resources also will be discussed.

American Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice hinted a deal is in the works during her visit to Israel this week. At her meeting with Abbas in Ramallah, she "proposed new ideas related to the peace process," Abbas's spokesman Nabil Abu Rdneh said. "The coming weeks will be very decisive," he added.

AND FOR THE WHOLE JEWISH PEOPLE!!!


(Original Post)

Condi pulls a Solomon: Split Jerusalem in 2
Sources reveal status of secret talks to create Palestinian state this year

...Any Israeli-Palestinian paper agreement is to finalize a process that began at last November's U.S. backed Annapolis conference, which seeks to create a Palestinian state, at least on paper, before Bush leaves office.

One Palestinian negotiator speaking to WND described as "crazy" the intensity and frequency of Israeli-Palestinian talks in recent weeks, saying both sides have been meeting on a daily basis, usually at the highest levels. The negotiator said Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Chief Palestinian Negotiator Ahmed Queri have been leading the talks.
The negotiator said Jerusalem is being discussed by both sides and that the two teams are "closer than ever" on coming to an agreement on the status of the city.
This claim was verified to WND by other diplomatic sources involved in the negotiations.....

26 August 2008

Report from JPollard's website

Senator Biden Supports Clemency for Pollard
J4JPnews clarification - August 24, 2008

Senator Joseph Biden, new running mate for Democratic presidential candidate Obama Barak, stated his position on Jonathan Pollard in a 2007 interview (with Shalom TV). When asked about Pollard, Biden said, "... There's a rationale in my view why Pollard should be given leniency. But there is not a rationale to say what happened did not happen and [he] should be pardoned..." These comments are now being widely re-reported in light of the breaking news on his candidacy for Vice President of the United States and largely misunderstood. J4JP offers the following clarifications:

1. Senator Biden's comments support Clemency for Pollard
Jonathan Pollard is not seeking a pardon.
Pollard has never asked for a pardon.
Pollard is seeking clemency.
Clemency is what Senator Biden refers to when he speaks of "leniency."

2. Clemency vs. Pardon - what's the difference?
A pardon, in American legal terms, wipes out the crime. It virtually erases the history of the crime. A pardon restores full constitutional rights to an American citizen, as if he/she had never committed a crime. This explains why Senator Biden replied: "… there is not a rationale to say what happened did not happen and [he] should be pardoned."

Clemency, unlike a pardon, does not wipe out the record of the offense; it essentially readjusts the sentence. Clemency can be expressed as a reduction of sentence, and/or as a commutation to time served.

Jonathan Pollard has never sought to erase the fact that he did indeed transfer classified information to Israel and in doing so, broke the law. He has never denied this. Pollard has never asked for a pardon. What he does seek is clemency.

3. Some of the reasons Pollard seeks presidential clemency include:
* a grossly disproportionate sentence
* a broken plea agreement
* the use of secret evidence
* a false charge of treason
* ineffective assistance of counsel
* ex parte communication between prosecutors and judge
* a lack of due process
* a sentencing procedure infected by false allegations and lies
* violation of constitutional rights

4. Jonathan Pollard is now completing his 23rd year of an unprecedented life sentence for providing classified information to an ally, Israel. The median sentence for this offense is 2 to 4 years, with some serving no jail time at all.

Senator Biden's comments supporting presidential clemency for Jonathan are appropriate and welcome.

Going Back to Sleep

If you thought the crisis in Georgia was over, think again...

US aid warship will defy Russian control of Georgian port of Poti
The US embassy in Tbilisi said Tuesday, Aug. 26, that two warships will deliver aid to Georgia Wednesday through the Black Sea port of Poti, the day after Russian forces announced they would search all incoming cargoes.

The first US aid warship docked at Batumi Saturday, to avoid friction with the Russian naval, infantry and armored forces which control Poti port.

The Black Sea confrontation between Russia and the US-led NATO forces predicted by DEBKAfile last week is building up inexorably to a climax.

In Moscow, DEBKAfile’s military sources report, Capt. Igor Dygalo, deputy commander of the Russian Navy, announced that the Moskva missile cruiser would carry out a naval exercise on the Black Sea.

The Russians are clearly marking out their control of the Black Sea in the face of the USS McFaul guided missile destroyer’s arrival with aid for Georgia. Our sources report that the McFaul carries 50 Tomahawk cruise missiles capable of striking land and sea targets.

Capt. Dygalo said the Moskva would practice its wire-guided weapons, communications and missile guidance systems. The exercise will no doubt interfere with the movements of NATO vessels, as clearly intended.

Russian Dep. chief of staff Gen. Anatoly Nogovitsyn spoke Monday, Aug. 25, of nine Western vessels in the Black Sea - 2 American, 4 Turkish and the rest Polish and Spanish. He said their presence was not a cause for concern.

However, DEBKAfile’s military sources report that a clash is becoming inevitable, whether among these hostile fleets or over Russian troops’ demand to search the cargoes of the two US warships when they dock at Poti Wednesday: the US Coast Guard cutter Dallas and the command and control USS Mount Whitney . The latter is equipped with facilities for commanding sea, land and air combat operations.

Message from Binyamin Golden

Perek 89 posted 21.08.08 at Dani18.com:

Am Yisrael, we are worrying in these days about the war of Gog uMagog. But the biggest and most dangerous war, the real war of Gog uMagog, is the war of every Jew, between himself and his yetzer hara….

Every Jew must wage war with the yetzer hara and win the battle over him. Right now the yetzer hara is very strong. Because this is the end of all the gilgulim and all his sins are reaching their tikun until now, now we need to repair. Therefore the enemy, the yetzer hara, is at its strongest and cruelest. …And we must wage war, each one separately, and win the battle, with G-d’s help, over the yetzer hara.

In this last period of time, we are receiving many warnings…particular as well as general. Almost every house in Yisrael is suffering troubles, every kind of trouble. In the whole wide world, we are standing before a big war. The biggest that ever was in the world and also the cruelest.

And now, in addition to this, we have received a new warning, a very difficult warning. Gevald, gevald, gevald! In Bnei Brak, four Torah scrolls were burned in one day, lo aleynu.

Who did this? Us? We did not burn them, but our sins burned the Torah scrolls. Our sins, of the chareidim, of the supposedly faithful, burned the Torah scrolls. It doesn’t matter who lit the fire. They are completely evil and Hashem will deal with them.

But this is the message to us: That we do not do what the Torah asks of us. We’re learning and guarding the mitzvot, supposedly, but we are lacking much in the mitzvot that we do. We’re lacking; therefore, Am Yisrael receives a warning. Our Torah, the Torah that we supposedly are learning, and the mitzvot that we are trying to do, are not good enough. Missing from our deeds are the heart and the connection to Hashem. Therefore, we must return in teshuva.

First thing, to take out the materialism from our lives.... After that, to take out every lie and to live only to do the will of Hashem.

In the last days, we received another severe warning, the start of big surprises for all of us. What were the big surprises? The whole world was unaware of the fact that Russia, the big, bad, cruel bear, was already preparing to attack one of the small countries around it.

The big bear was like sleeping. In the last years, it was like his character was changed from cruel and bad to a cute teddy bear. Also in this period the gates were opened and the fear from the KGB decreased a lot. Therefore even Jews travel to Russia in order to return other Jews in teshuva, and some for the sake of doing good business there. This is a new phenomenon. Instead of Jews leaving Russia, there’s been the opposite movement. That also, Jews from every kind of place are arriving to Russia. Until today, we’ve been seeing that Russia is already not as strong as she once was and that she is supposedly democratic. But the truth is, she’s completely otherwise…. And the bear is again turning into a giant and monstrous….

Therefore, I want to say to all the Jews who are located in Russia that it is very much worthwhile to pack up the “Paklakh” and get out fast.

In truth, all the world is in great danger. The war in Georgia is only the beginning of the biggest war that has been in the world – Gog uMagog....

Therefore, what should we do? Jews have one weapon that is the strongest. And that is his tears. Not Russia, not America, and not Iran, not one country has a weapon this strong.

The tears of a Jew who cries from a broken heart and wants in truth to do teshuva over all his sins, tears of a Jew who understands that he has run away from his father’s house and wants now to return. Tears of a Jew who wants so much that his Father in heaven will receive him into the house again. Tears like these will rescue every Jew who makes use of them. Every Jew like this will be saved…..

But the Jews who think that America will save them, or Tzahal will save them or the Europeans will save them, Jews like these are hopeless, chas v’shalom… Atomic bomb, gas or every dirty bomb, every destructive technology that’s invented, from the west and also from the east, it won’t help against one tear of a Jew with a broken heart who wants to do real teshuva.

Jews in all the world, we are arriving at the end.... Perhaps a little bit more, but we are at the end. Each one separately needs to go over his whole life and do a personal accounting, to familiarize himself with all his sins and to acknowledge them and to be sorry for them.

List them on paper, sit on the floor, the men in sack and ashes, and cry with a broken heart over every sin, one by one. Be sorry that you have caused pain as it were to the Master of the Universe, to our Father in heaven, to our Father, our King. And decide to return in complete teshuva and not to do even one sin and not to distance yourself from HKB”H.

Don't forget to sit on the floor with sack and ashes.... And if there are no sack and ashes, tear kriah like a mourner. The women anyway naturally feel this better and do not need sack and ashes. A tear of a Jewish mother has more worth than sack and ashes.

And to be sorry for the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash, and over all our sins throughout the generations....that caused this... and to request from Hashem to bring Mashiach Tzidkeinu....

Am Yisrael, what else can be said? I sit and cry over all our exile, over the Batei HaMikdash that was destroyed and ask for Mashiach Tzidkeinu....

[My translation skills are negligible so any corrections are appreciated. Sources and additions were left out due to lack of time.]

24 August 2008

Right on Target

You read it here (and here) first.

Excerpt from the August 21st message received from Binyamin Golden:

באמת כל העולם בסכנה גדולה. המלחמה בגורגיה זאת רק ההתחלה של המלחמה הגדולה ביותר שהיתה מעולם - גוג ומגוג [אפילו מהשם של גורגיה אפשר להבין רמז לגוג, וגם מהשם של גורג בוש].

"In truth all the world is in great danger. The war in Georgia is only the beginning of the biggest war that will be in the world---Gog and Magog [Even from the name Georgia it's possible to understand a hint to Gog, and also from the name of George Bush.]

On "Powerlessness"

In the natural realm it would appear that we common people at the bottom of the pyramid are powerless to combat the forces of evil that rules at the top. Of course, there are plenty of deceived people who continue to believe that they have some power through the political process. Those who feel powerless are at least ahead of these. But they still haven't grasped the true reality which exists above this physical realm. In response to the following blogger comment, I wrote:

COMMENT: "The bottom line is that the gov't is controlled by the shadow gov't of Shimon Peres and Aharon Baraq, and the people are powerless to do anything about it."
RESPONSE: The bottom line is...Hashem is in control of everything. We hold in our hands the greatest power of all...teshuva. If we would just use it!

The main trouble with us is everyone thinks he's a tzadik. No one has anything from which to repent.

Yirmiyahu, chapter 8

"...why is this rebellious people of Jerusalem eternally rebellious? They hold fast to guile; they refuse to repent. I have listened and heard. They speak untruth; no man relents of his evil, saying 'What have I done?' They all follow their course like a horse racing headlong in war...."

Yirmiyahu 25

"...'Repent now each man from his evil way and from the wickedness of your deeds, so that you may remain on the land that Hashem gave you and your fathers forever and ever....' "

I have yet to hear one person from Gush Katif take any responsibility for their present condition. Do they bear no blame at all? If so, then Hashem is just cruel to His children, chas v'shalom!

In fact, we brought it upon ourselves.

For forty years Hashem waited for us to fulfill the other half of the mitzva of yishuv ha'aretz...that of driving out the former inhabitants. Instead we brought them into our homes and insured them parnasa to remain.

Bamidbar 33

"...But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the Land before you...it shall be that what I had meant to do to them, I shall do to you."
The Erev Rav government did not dictate who we must employ or from whom we must buy or whom we can visit and have coffee with. It doesn't prevent us shunning fellow Jews who insist on consorting with the enemy. No! There was plenty we could do, but we are so blase and uncaring about Hashem's desires, only concerned with our own.

The insistence on conforming to "democratic" means and norms is another example. Rav Binyamin Kahane,z"l Hy"d, already told us nearly ten years ago to stop supporting elections. Along comes Moshe Feiglin and once again, right-wing religious Jews are off on a wild goose chase wasting precious time and energy on a DISTRACTION from doing anything real and meaningful like making mass teshuva.

Before we set the world right, we have to first set our minds aright.
Some spiritual truths are in order.

The Erev Rav are klipot. They are parasitic in nature. They cannot exist without an attachment to kedusha from which they get the energy to survive. As long as Jews are mixed among them, they survive. When the Jews separate from them (and from their system) then that system will collapse and die. This is why we must abandon the system and separate from them. If we don't do it voluntarily then Hashem will bring it about and it won't be pleasant.

Just look at what has had to happen in order to distance good Jews from the government, the police, the courts---to disabuse us of the notion that we can bring the Erev Rav to the side of kedusha. It's not going to happen. It's not in their nature. They are not fitting vessels to contain it. (Another meaning to the phrase from Yirmiyahu---"my people has fashioned for themselves broken vessels which cannot contain water.")

The Torah is our instruction book for Life. It has everything we need and it tells us exactly what we need to do and how the world is run. Why do we not do more than pay lip service to it???

We should stop already with the schemes and keep repeating this simple message---Repent and Separate.

Cleanse your hearts and minds of foreign ideas. Cease the rebellion against the will of the Creator. Stop with the pragmatic cheshbonot and simply submit to the Torah's instructions. Separate from everyone and everything which contradicts it.

In the end, there is no other choice. At Sinai, we sold our souls back to the One who gave them. From that point on, our free will no longer included whether we would fulfill our destiny or not. Our free will only extends as far as deciding whether we will reach it by the long, hard road, or the short, easy one.

Haven't we suffered enough already? Let's just put down the toys and go in to supper. It really could be that simple, if we are willing.

No more games.

21 August 2008

Absolutely Amazing!!

UPDATE: In the end, this storm zigzagged across the state from top to bottom and hit it a total of four times, breaking all previous records.

People used to be able to pretend that Nature ran on autopilot. Not anymore. Three hits from the same storm? Wap. Wap. Wap! WAKE UP AMERICAN JEWS!!

Tropical Storm Fay expected to hit Fla. 3rd time

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – Tropical Storm Fay lumbered offshore for what was likely to be a brief stay over the Atlantic Ocean's energizing waters after flooding hundreds of homes, trapping residents and leaving much of Florida a soggy mess.

Forecasters expected the storm to complete its zig-zag course by hitting the state for a third time in a week, along with Georgia, but didn't think it would strengthen to a hurricane over the open waters.

The storm flooded hundreds of homes in Brevard and St. Lucie counties, some with up to 5 feet of water, forcing dozens of rescues. The Federal Emergency Management Agency was reviewing Gov. Charlie Crist's request for a federal emergency disaster declaration to defray rising debris and response costs.

"I want to stress that this storm is becoming a serious catastrophic flooding event," Crist said.

19 August 2008

The Malbim on Gog uMagog

From Kabbalaonline by Rabbi Meir Leibush:

(Translation and commentary by Simcha Treister)

In a prophecy that most of the commentators say refers to the End of Days, Ezekiel refers to the punishment that will befall those who strike terror in the "Land of the Living". The Targum of Yonatan Ben Uziel translates this phrase as the Land of Israel (Ara-a deYisrael) and this leads the classical commentator the Malbim, Rabbi Meir Loeb ben Yechiel Michel (1809-1879), to make some startling observations.

For thus says the Lord G-d: "The sword of the King of Babylon shall come upon you..." (Ez. 32:11) "...And it came to pass in the twelfth year, on the 15th day of the month, that the word of the Lord came to me, saying:" (Ibid. 32:17)

The twelfth Hebrew month is Adar, and the 15th of Adar, Purim, is the exact anniversary of the cessation of the first Gulf War. It was also the date of the commencement of hostilities in the recent conflict. The fact that the prophet states this time reference could therefore be taken to mean that the word of G-d was directed to exactly our time. It also comes in the context of the first Gulf war when Iraq/Babylon did indeed attack Israel.

The Malbim notes that the date of the first prophecy is given in verse 1 as "the twelfth year, in the twelfth month, in the first day of the month." Now it appears that the prophet is receiving the same prophecy again. He says:

"This second prophecy is very hard to understand. It is not clear what it wants to tell us although the Maharal of Prague has already explained that it is a prophecy referring to the future, at the End of Days, in the days of Gog and MaGog - that in those days all of the nations will gather around Jerusalem, and this is the true interpretation."

Some say that this could refer to the Oslo process that was supposed to result in Israel giving up sovereignty over ancient Jerusalem. Here Gog could be George who started the Oslo process after the first Gulf war and MaGog - meaning "from Gog" - George Bush Junior who has to deal with the continuation of the war.

"However I don't agree with his interpretation relating to Gog and MaGog, and my way of interpreting it is different to his so I will interpret these verses according to my own way. Here, at the End of Days, after Israel has already settled on the land of Israel [!], in the future, the peoples of the world will gather together to conquer Jerusalem. Then will gather together to conquer the land of Israel from the Jews Gog, the President of [the country] Meshek [which means "Market"] and Tuval from the lands of the North and West who are uncircumcised and called Edom. (Meshek and Tuval are of the descendants of Yafet [one of the three sons of Noah] that live [now] in Europe, as Josephus has written; there it is also written "Persia and Kush and Put are with them" [Ez. 38:5]). And also [with them will be] the house of Torgama that are all circumcised and adhere to the religion of the Ishmaelite [Islam]

But when they come there will be trouble between them, and they will fight each other - that is, Edom and Ishmael will fight against each other because their religions are different. There G-d will judge them with sword and blood. This is as is written there and in Zechariah, chapter 14. In relation to this, it is told here how each will fall into the abyss. First Egypt and Assyria and Elam that hold by Islam - they are all circumcised nowadays - and after He will account for Meshek and Tuval and Edom and their kings and princes in the North who are all uncircumcised. The first and most important to fall will be Egypt because they are close to the land of Israel. They will come first and be defeated. Then the Assyrians and the Persians will come to take their vengeance and the two sides will both fall.

Thus far the comments of the Malbim. Among the first to fight the modern state of Israel was indeed Egypt. The Assyrians could perhaps be the modern countries of Syria and Iraq. The RaDaK in his explanation of Joel 4:19 states that Egypt is a general term for all Ishmaelites, since the mother of Ishmael, Hagar, was an Egyptian, and he married an Egyptian woman.

We also note another interesting fact in these passages from Ezekiel: in the verses from 23 to 32 the prophet mentions 7 times the same word "terror" in seven different verses. For example:

Their graves are set in the sides of the pit, and her company is around her grave; all of them slain, fallen by the sword, because they struck terror in the Land of the Living. (Ibid. 32:23)

There is Elam and all her multitude around her grave, all of them slain, fallen by the sword, who have gone down uncircumcised into the netherworld because they struck terror in the Land of the Living; and they have carried their shame with those who go down to the pit. (Ibid. 32:24)

It seems clear that the Prophet is drawing a clear connection between this war between the West and the Ishmaelite and terror in Israel!

[A further review of this subject can be seen in this old post from YeranenYaakov.]

"The Arabian Empire"

In the comments section of the previous post, Bar Kochba said:

"...wondering where Ishmael/ Persia comes in to the equation."

So continuing with the Maharal from Ner Mitzvah:
Some ask why Scripture excludes the great and mighty empire of Yishmael (the Arabian empire). In answer to this we maintain, that the Arabian empire is not mentioned since Scripture is only concerned with those empires who inherited Yisrael's elevated and Kodesh royal power. The four world empires would never have ascended, had the empire of Yisrael not declined. The Arabs, however, did not inherit their power to rule from Yisrael; the Holy One directly bestowed it upon them, in their own right. They are the seed of Avraham, and the Holy One accepted Avraham's prayer that Yishmael should not perish (Breishit 17/20). Hence, Scripture is not concerned with the Arabian empire; only with the four world empires who inherited their power from Yisrael, and who will eventually return this power to Yisrael.

In addition to this it also appears valid that the Arabian empire is included within the Persian empire, the second of the empires. Although the Rabbis state that the second empire is Paras, specifically, they do not mean just Paras. Indeed, Paras is never explicitly mentioned in the verse in Daniel. What the Rabbis really mean to say is that Paras is included within the category of 'second world empires', and the main member of this category.

17 August 2008

More Thoughts on Gog uMagog

We know from our Sages that Eisav/Edom is Rome---the Christian world. This is the fourth and longest exile. Early in church history, the Christian world divided West and East. Catholic Rome ruled the West and Orthodox Christianity centered itself in Constantinople and took hold in the East (Eastern Europe and Russia).

While the East was the site of terrible pogroms and atrocities against Jews, it was the liberal, enlightened, 'free' West where the two greatest holocausts of Jews have taken place. The German Reich murdered 6 million Jewish bodies. US assimilation has reportedly claimed a greater number of souls,...
America melts tribal ties. Jewish leaders write and preach incessantly on the evils of intermarriage. And the Jewish intermarriage rate has gone from 10 percent before 1965 to more than 50 percent since 1985–not counting ethnic non-Jews who convert. "We have lost more Jews to intermarriage than to the Holocaust," thundered a direct-mail appeal I once received. [NOTE: Vanishing Russian Jew: 80% Assimilation Rate in U.S. ]
... and seeks to export that spiritual holocaust to Israel through rampant missionary activity. Both nations, Germany and the US, used the Eagle, ancient emblem of Imperial Rome, as a standard.

Of the 'Roman' Empire, which over time evolved into the American Empire, the Maharal wrote in Ner Mitzvah:
...the fourth empire was a universal synthesis, alone equivalent to the others [the three preceding it].

...Because of its universality, this empire is motivated to be everything, not allowing anyone else to co-exist along with it.

...It therefore destroys all others, and is occupied with destruction only. ...Indeed, the basic trait of this empire was destructiveness, as it burned and destroyed the Temple of our God, ....

...Its destructiveness derives from the non-existence that cleaves to it [Am-reika], since the fourth empire is the end and finish of the world empires; their deterioration and ruin. The fourth empire is associated with void, and he who is associated with nothingness and void has the power to transmit it to another. Thus, the fourth empire derives the capacity to destroy and demolish all that is. [Listen to the Iraqis on this subject.]

...Void, however, is what leads to existential renewal, as is well known, and therefore the vacuum and non-existence created by this empire will lead to the re-existence of Yisrael. The fourth empire is therefore called a swine --- Hazer, for it will return ---TaHazor, royal power to Yisrael.
A few comments here: It has been noted before that the name Bush spelled backwards in Hebrew is shuv, also meaning return. He returns three times to Jerusalem to indicate that 1) Hashem wants His people to return to Him and to Eretz Yisrael; 2) this "peace" process of "returning" land to the Arabs is really about returning us to our Divine heritage and destiny; and 3) Mr "Shuv" himself is returning in another gilgul to finish what he started when he, as Titus, destroyed the Beit HaMikdash HaSheini, but instead he is returning for his ultimate 'reward.'
The Maharal continues:
...It is important to understand that Hashem is the designer of the order of the four world empires. ...in order to exist they surely must be attached to Hashem in some respect. Each empire is thus symbolized by an animal that has at least one clean sign, as the Midrash relates, indicative of an aspect of association with the Holy One.

The first three empires are symbolized by the camel, the coney, and the rabbit respectively. Each of these brings up its cud, a sign of purity, although its hoofs are not split. Note further, that the sign of purity of these empires, is hidden and internal, an indication that their partial connection with the Holy One is internal and concealed. The fourth empire, on the other hand, is not symbolized by an animal whose sign of cleanliness is hidden, for on the contrary, the split hoofs of the swine are openly revealed. This indicates that the relationship that this empire has with the Holy One, is not more than surface deep. That is, it pretentiously flaunts signs of purity, while truthfully, on the inside, it is not pure. Pretending to be pure is the closest it comes to the Holy One and to truth --- by displaying their hoofs which externally and superficially indicate purity, while this is not really so.
This brings to mind the German obsession with purity of race and the evangelical obsession with homosexuality while all the mega-preachers are committing adultery or worse. It's also noteworthy that the standard fare for the most important Christian holidays is pork---the Xmas ham and the Easter ham. Just thought I'd throw that in.

But the question is, even if the US is the present equivalent of Rome, does it necessarily relate to Gog uMagog? Is there any indication in any of our sources that Magog and 'Rome' are one and the same or might Gog arise to oppose the emergence of Yisrael from out of the destruction of Edom/Rome?

To be continued... If anyone has anything to contribute, please use the comments section.

GOG-R

Since several people weighed in on the identity of 'Gog,' I've been mulling what it all means. Surely it is no coincidence that the name "George" figures so prominently in our history or that the conflict which broke open just before Tisha b'Av concerns a country called "Georgia."

The following is taken from Geula Watch:

I compiled the following and posted it to my website in April 2004 before anyone
else was saying that George Bush was very possibly the Gog of Magog spoken of by
the Hebrew prophets. Many have since made the linguistic connection between
George and Gog and most relate Magog to George Bush, Sr., i.e. George from
George. However, Magog is the name of the nation from which Gog comes. It's
notable that another George---George Washington, for whom the capital is
named---is known as the father of his country---the United States of America.
And it doesn't stop there. The American colonists revolted against King George
III of England and one of the main streets of Jerusalem is named for King George
V who was the English monarch at the beginning of the British Mandate period. It
is no coincidence that Britain ruled in Eretz Yisrael at the beginning of our
statehood and that America "rules" it via a puppet regime at the end of our
"state"-hood.
In Hebrew "George" is spelled gimel, vav, reish, gimel. If we separate out the gimel, vav, gimel, the reish remains. Let's look at what Rabbi Ginsberg says about the reish.
Although the letter reish is situated close to the end of the alef-beit,"its primary meaning is "head" or "beginning."
Interesting that the word rosh appears in conjunction with Gog in the opening pasuk of Yechezkel 38:
ב. בֶּן-אָדָם, שִׂים פָּנֶיךָ אֶל-גּוֹג אֶרֶץ הַמָּגוֹג--נְשִׂיא, רֹאשׁ מֶשֶׁךְ וְתֻבָל
Or maybe the message we should take from George/Georgia is that they are the harbingers of the beginning of Gog---reishit Gog.
I could be wrong, but from my perspective, Russia's actions appear to be self-defensive. It is America that looks to be bent on world conquest. It is America who heads a worldwide coalition of forces...at the moment anyway. And it is America who already has a dangerous military presence in our homeland.
Beware!! If today, the US works out an accommodation with Iran on their nuclear activities, tomorrow, they will arrive here to divest us of ours.

US, Israel Agree on Deal to Deploy 'X-Band' in Negev

(IsraelNN.com) The US and Israel have agreed on a deal to deploy the X-band early-warning missile radar system in the Negev desert, said a spokesman from the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The new system of radars, which are linked to a US satellite-based alert network, will be staffed by US military personnel.


The announcement , which was published over the weekend in Defense News, said that although deployment was to have been put into action in 2009, it may be moved up to autumn 2008. This will mark the first time American military personnel are permanently based in Israel.

11 August 2008

Comment on Current Events

Given the timing of this armed conflict between Russia and Georgia, my gut feeling is that it will only progress and expand into WW3 and it will likely happen very quickly. There are only seven weeks left in this the seventh year---the year of war---and four of those are dedicated to national teshuva.


07 August 2008

Please BOYCOTT Home Center

Now at Home Center: Discounts for Arabs only

Customer accidentally stumbles upon secret 'minority discount' offered by Israeli home goods chain. 'I tried to think what would happen if it was a discount for Jews only,' he wonders