Sifting Through The Beef Stew

Beef

Many of the negative nellies who either didn’t attend PM Netanyahu’s critical speech to Congress or who were simply circling the wagons came across pretty darn pathetic yesterday.


A smidgon of their very shakey arguments:


1) THIS IS POLITICAL, PERSONAL, MACHO, DISRESPECTFUL, CONDESCENDING, AND MADE ME CRY


FALSE. Actually, with great alarm and dismay, we have been watching for many months, the name-calling and discrediting coming right here from bipartisan Washington…this, rather than supporting the only true democracy, friend, and ally in the middle east. For the Jewish people, this is a mater of survival from genocide, plain and simple–and only 70 years after the Holocaust.


2) THIS IS TO CHANGE THE ELECTION


FALSE. This was at the invitation of Congress to come speak, and at its timetable. The timing does not necessarily help or hurt the PM’s election chances; these are matters for individual voters at the polls to decide.


3) THERE’S NO ALTERNATIVES


FALSE. The alternative is plain, simple, and common sense–keep the sanctions in place and the pressure on Iran, and NOT settle for a deal that proflierates dangerous nukes to a threatening Iranian regime. Those advocating otherwise will find themselves on the wrong side of the historical nuclear aftermath…won’t that leave them a wonderful legacy!


4) WE CAN SURVEIL AND VERIFY ALL NUCLEAR ACTIVITIES


FALSE. The IAEA has repeatedly declared that they have NOT been able to verify Iran’s nuclear activies or the facilities used to build and house them. Moreover, repeated agreements with North Korea turned out to be unverifiable and ended up in their attaining dangerous nuclear weapons that we are still contending with.


5) NO DEAL WILL BE ACCEPTABLE


FALSE. A (very) bad deal is not acceptable. A deal that KEEPS nukes–weapons of mass destruction–out of the hands of the world’s premier sponsor of terrorism and human rights abuses–Iran–for an phased-in easing of sanctions is a good deal.


6) YOU CAN’T STOP USE OF NUCLEAR KNOWLEDGE


FALSE. You can deny Iran the infrastructure and legitimacy to use that knowledge, period. Maybe you can’t put it back in the can, but you can take away the can, shaped like an ICBM, itself.


7) WRONG ON IRAQ AND WRONG AGAIN


FALSE.  When the world was passive in the face of nuclear proliferation in Iraq, Israel was spot on when it destroyed their nearly completed nuclear reactor in 1981. Unfortunately, we were wrong about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction capability as reported by the Presidential Commission that investigated this post the 2003 invasion of Iraq. 


8) NOTHING NEW HERE


FALSE. PM Netanyahu made clear that this is NOT partisan, that he has the highest respect for the President(cy), that he is most grateful to America, that our bounds are unbreakable, that the enemy (IRAN) of our enemy (ISIS) is not our friend (both seeking radical dominion over the middle east and globally), and that proliferation of nuclear weapons of mass destruction is not acceptable–now or in ten years. And maybe most inspiringly and underpinning many of our common bonds and values is that there is a picture of Moses over the door of Capital!  ;-)


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Purim All Over Again

queen-esther
Last night my wife received an email from a very holy woman from our synagogue telling us to pray for G-d to save the Jewish people.

 
This at a time when Iran is on the verge of nuclear breakout capability and has for more than a decade threatened Israel with genocide
 
As Prime Minister Netanyahu said yesterday, the threat from a nuclear-armed Iran is a security issue to the U.S. (which has been threatened by Iran, including unbelievably threats to President Obama’s family), but is a survival issue to Israel.
 
The holy lady from the shule reminded us that this is the week we celebrate Purim.
 
This holiday commerates when the Jewish people were miraculously saved almost 2,500 years ago from an evil plot to destroy all the Jews in ancient Persia (and yes, what is now related to modern day Iran).
 
The threat: “To destroy, kill, and annihilate all the Jews, young and old, infants and women, in a single day.”
 
But for a miracle from G-d through Mordechai and Queen Esther were the Jewish people saved from annihilation. 
 
It is not lost of any of us that now Iran wants to exterminate the Jews once again, in a single day, in a single nuclear strike on the holy land. 
 
The Jerusalem Post astutely points out today that Prime Minister Netanyahu is like Mordechai who recognized the threat of the evil Haman who sought the Jews’ destruction, as well as Queen Esther who spoke truth to this to King Ahasuerus. 
 
Both my mother and my wife are named after the beautiful Queen Esther and so this holiday has enormous personal meaning for me, especially since my family are also survivors of the Holocaust. 
 
Today, we are all praying for another miracle when Netanyahu addresses the U.S. Congress that the Jews should once again be saved from historical enemies old and new. ;-)
 
(Source Photo: here with attribution to pixgood)

Orange Spiral, Going Up

Spiral Staircase
What an absolutely gorgeous staircase.



A modern spiral with vivid orange and white. 



When I look at this, it’s almost as if the staircase is in motion, like a spinning drill bit. 



The person sitting to the right of the stairs seems like they will be swept away or crushed in the next spin of the stairs.



Next to the big windows, the incoming light hits the stairs and creates shadows that give it even more life. 



Excellent job by GW University in their new Science and Engineering building. 



You’d expect to see something like this in the Museum of Modern Art…it’s awesome! ;-)



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Metro Wide Open

Metro Gate
I took this photo in the Washington, D.C. Metro today. 



What do you think it is?



Lots of electronics, wires, lights–and in front of it and holding the door open is a “caution” pylon. 



This is one of the faregates to get into the metro system for the Capital region. 



Now how “smart” is it to leave the door wide open to this contraption. 

Usually the basics of physical security is gates, guards, and guns–in this case, the gates part is broken. 



The Department of Homeland Security was provided another week of funding to work out the immigration mess pitting Congress against the President…



But even with DHS still up and running, security is looking a little too wide open again. ;-)



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Please Don’t Shoot Our Ally

Don't Shoot

So it is incredible how backward our current political situation is.


Get this…


When Israel was ready this past year to take out the Iran Nukes, who stopped them?


No, not the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.


No, not any of the other Arab states or terror groups.


No, not Russia.


But rather, our President is reported to have threatened to literally “shoot down Israeli fighter jets” (those of our “Major Strategic Ally”) if they attempted to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities. 


This at the same time that he is desperately seeking an agreement with Axis of Evil, Iran, who continues to threaten Israel and what Iran calls, “The Great Satan,” America. 


While these “negotiations” are going into the home stretch (with one extension after another)…


- Iran destroyed a mock Nimitz class U.S. aircraft carrier in a missile attack, just last week. 


- A senior Iranian cleric threatened our executive branch and vowed to “raise the flag of Islam over the White House.


- In Iran,”Obama is being hung in effigy and the U.S. flag being burnt in Tehran.”


Are these the actions of a nation that the U.S. can trust to make an agreement with on nuclear weapons of mass destruction OR is this a deal with the devil?


As one Arab official stated: “We prefer a collapse of the diplomatic process to a bad deal.” 


Why is this administration turning on Israel and our Arab allies and desperately pursuing a deal, “making ever more concessions” to the ever dangerous Iranian regime. 


As Putin is alleged to have had Russian opposition leader, Boris Nemtsov killed last week, one has to wonder what is going on in our own backyard here in America, with worse yet, purported threats to shoot at our ally Israel. 


G-d should give our leaders the wisdom to discern our allies from our foes, to treat them accordingly, and to secure a genuine peace with security. 


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Mike Licht)

Who Will Help?


This is an awesome video that has gone viral.



A social experiment with hidden camera filming of a homeless child freezing on the streets of Manhattan…



See the people just walking on by–completely ignoring or plain unaffected by the suffering taking place literally right next to them. 



Where is the compassion of the people?



Many are just rushing by, chatting away, and/or carrying fancy filled bags from nearby shopping excursions.



The bystanders walk past and practically over this boy’s shivering body lying in ragged shirt, without a coat, and lying half inside a big black garbage bag on the street. 



I imagined G-d looking down on this extreme callousness of his creations ignoring the suffering of this boy and being quite upset. 



Perhaps, there are unfortunately so many people now homeless , hungry, and begging in the streets that our minds and hearts have simply learned to “tune it out.”



The ending is really amazing…when the one person who comes over to care for the poor boy is a black homeless man–who ends up taking off his own coat and gives it to the child. 



May G-d open our eyes to the pain of our brethren and grant us compassionate hearts to sincerely care one for each other. ;-)

Title To The Holy Land

Israel's Title
We came across a horrible piece of anti-Israel propaganda in the Washington, D.C. Metro this afternoon, right before Shabbat, and ahead of the AIPAC conference next week.



See on the left/middle, the picture of the pro-Palestinian advertisement that falsely claims that Israel stole the Palestinian’s land.



When in fact, it was Israel who was promised the Holy Land in the Bible, and it was Israel (see map of the Twelve Tribes of Israel on the right) who settled the land already more than 2,000 years ago!



Interesting that the ad questions, “Does Israel want peace or land?” when it is precisely terrorist organizations like Hamas and Islamic Jihad (to name just a few) that:



-  Shoot thousands of missiles indiscriminately into Israeli population centers.



- Build terror tunnels to abduct Israeli citizens and conduct murderous rampages in it’s cities.



- Send suicide bombers onto Israeli commuter buses and into pizzerias, cafes, and discotheques. 



There can be real peace–hopefully in our time–with a two-state solution once the Palestinians finally accept one and stop wanting to murder and drive the Jews into the sea! 



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)