And There Came A New King Who Knew Not Joseph

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, “And There Came A New King Who Knew Not Joseph.”

As we commemorate Passover, we remember that:

In Egypt, the Jews rose to the highest ranks, with Joseph being second only to the Pharaoh, and “Israel settled in the land of Egypt in the region of Goshen; they acquired property in it and they were fruitful and multiplied greatly.” (Genesis 47:27) But then: “A new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.” (Exodus 1:8) Similarly, in Europe, the Jews had risen to the highest ranks of society, they were free and prospered. They prospered and thrived religiously, and built synagogues and yeshivas to worship and learn in. Moreover, the Jews thought they were Germans (and other European nationalities), like everyone else, and that they were fundamentally safe. That is, until there arose a “new king,” Adolf Hitler (may his name be cursed forever), “who knew not Joseph.”

What will happen in America that we all love–will the pendulum swing once again to hate and anti-Semitism, where there comes a new king that does not know Joseph? 


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Novel Passover Haggadah

Thought this was a pretty cool Passover Haggadah. 


Shaped like a wine bottle!


Sort of sets the stage for the four cups of wine at the Seder. 


I found this Haggadah in Israel, and I’m glad I got a few of them.  


Wishing everyone a joyous Passover and Easter holiday! 😉


(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

Iran Had Better Look To The Haggadah

On Passover, we recite the Haggadah to remember how G-d redeemed us from being slaves in Egypt. 


At the Seder, many also recite the Hatikvah–the Israeli National Anthem–to remember that our suffering and redemption didn’t end almost 3,500 years ago in the Exodus from Egypt, but has continued to this very day post Holocaust with the establishment of the modern-day State of Israel. 


One thing that I will tell you is that if Slavery in Egypt and all the anti-Semitism, Inquisitions, Pogroms, Expulsions, and the Holocaust taught us anything is that:


– One, our faith in G-d Almighty and his love and promised redemption for us will never cease, and 


– Two, that we will never, ever, go like sheep to the slaughter again.


Already in 1981 and 2007, with the help of Hashem, Israel rid the world of the scourge of nuclear weapons of destruction from the hands of tyrannical Middle Eastern dictatorships in both Iraq and Syria. 


And I would venture to say that neither of these enemies were as completely hateful, ruthless, and vowed to Israel’s destruction as Iran is today. 


In the Haggadah we recall the eternal fight of good over evil:

“For not only one enemy has tried to destroy us, but in every generation, nations have tried to destroy us, but the Holy One, blessed be He, always saves us from their hands.”


As sure as we celebrate Passover today, I am confident that G-d will once again make a tremendous miracle and save us from the hands of the maniacal mullahs in Iran who pose an existential threat to the Israelites today. 


Israel’s Operation Babylon and Operation Orchard in Iraq and Syria were successful actions in and of themselves, but they were also practice runs for what is yet to come to the spinning centrifuges in Axis of Evil, Iran. 


G-d’s promise to Abraham to bless the Israelites and give them the Holy Land–whether by the ten plagues in Egypt or the Allied victory over Adolf Hitler–redemption will soon be coming again delivered compliments of the heroic Israeli Defense Forces.  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Cat Knob

Cat Knob.jpeg

So I just love this cat door knob. 

Carved in wood and a special tinge of African Egyptian art. 

Dark wood cat knob on light wood doors–looks warming and pretty classy. 

From the white glue in the background, it looks like it fallen off a few times, perhaps. 

But either way so cute–one of these on each on the French Doors. 

It’s a nice home decor and style–and the big cat eyes are so handsome. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

10 Commandments, 10 Plagues–What’s The Connection?

Ten Commandments

It occurred to me while listening to the Rabbi’s speech at Magen David Synagogue today that there is nothing random in the Torah (Bible).

Since this weeks’s Torah reading in Exodus was about the ten plagues in Egypt, I realized that this must be connected to the later ten commandments in a subsequent reading. 

This table explains how the commandments to the Jews (and all mankind) and the plagues on the Egyptians are connected one for one.

(Source Table: Andy Blumenthal)

Just Frogs

Frog 1 Frog 2 Frog 3

What’s with the frog infatuation–especially associated with ice cream and frozen yogurt (SweetFrog, Frogg’s Ice Cream, Frosty Frog, etc.)?

According to Save The Frogs, some interesting facts:

– There are over 6,300 species of frogs and toads (a close, warty relative of the frog). 

– They range from just 9 mm to over 30 mm and 6.6 lbs, and can live from a few years to as many as 30-years (ol’ frog river uncaring with the flow of the Mississippi). 

– Frogs are amphibians developing in their larval state in water as herbivores, but as adults living on land as carnivores (flies anyone).

– Toads tend to have poisonous secretions as does the Poison Dart Frog (maybe the princess should not be kissing that frog).

– Australian Stony Creek Frogs build nests for their eggs just like birds (got to protect those youngins). 

– Wood frogs adapt to the freezing cold by stopping their breathing, blood flow, and heartbeat (now that’s extreme hibernation).

– Similarly, Burrowing Frogs survive hot, dry climates by slowing their metabolism and shedding their skin into a protective mosture-retaining cocoon, and others can live underground for as many as 10 months and surface in mass when the rains come (like the 2nd plague in Egypt).

– Pesticides, fertilizers, and parasites have been increasing deformities in frogs such as missing limbs or having 6 legs (making jumping on 3 legs a bitch and jumping on 6 an unfair advantage). 

Frogs are a great illustration of how to “adopt or die” with the emphasis on living and thriving forward–not so sure though about frog-flavored ice cream. 😉

(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

Is This A Partner For WMD Peace?

Everyone was speculating why Iran was building a 202 meter long life-size replica of a Nimitz Class U.S. Aircraft Carrier in the Persian Gulf.


Well today (as we are hear of “progress” with Iranian nuclear talks), we got our answer, as the Iranian military took the opportunity and blew the mock U.S. aircraft carrier to smithereens!



The commander of Iran’s Navy stated: “The Americans, and the entire world, knows that the American Navy is one of our targets and it will take us 50 seconds to destroy every US warship.”


At the same time, Iran is mulling over the purchase of a powerful anti-aircraft missile system from Russia.


So now Iran is going toward an agreement for a possible lifting of western financial sanctions and a 10-year nuke capability, and we are trusting them that it is for peaceful purposes?


Many of our major Middle East allies are concerned including Israel, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey, and more, and so much so that an Iranian nuke capability may “spark a nuclear arms race.”


Hmm…why the desperation for a deal with “Axis of Evil,” Iran amidst ongoing hostility and threats from Iran towards “The Great Satan,” America, and all the express concerns of our longtime friends and allies? 


Now we won’t just have deadly terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda and ISIS to contend with across the region, but also a nuclear armed Iran–amidst regular threats to sink the U.S. Navy and annihilate Israel (and just 70 years after the Holocaust killed 6 million Jewish men, women, and children!).  


What have we learned about appeasement of dangerous foes and the unimaginable risks to millions of innocent lives around the world? 😉