Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Commenting on Katrina

I have received many requests to comment on Hurricane Katrina. Yet, I have learned a valuable lesson over the last six months. I can only comment on events in retrospect. G-d has only allowed us to see His backside throughout history. Just like Moshe Rabbeinu could only see the back of His (G-d's) tefillin when Moshe asked to behold G-d's glory, we can only see G-d's passing after the event has fully occurred. As of this writing New Orleans has been spared the worst of Katrina's wrath although the full extent of damage is not known. The 10% of the U.S's oil refining capacity that is in Southeast Louisianna also seems to have survived. Yet, again the full extent of possible damage is not known. There does seem to be some damage to several offshore oil rigs which provide 30% of the U.S.'s production capacity, but again the full extent of damage is still not known. In a few days I will be able to write something about this, once the many question marks have answers. Until then let us all try to sneak a glance at the wake of G-d's passing and see His hand in history, once all the facts are in!

I also desire to see the beginning of retribution for Gog W. and his puppets here in Israel for destroying great centers of Torah learning and Mitzvah performance in Gaza and the Northern Shomron. Yet, I cannot comment on this until I see that this actually has happened, measure for measure.

G-d willing we will see signs that this evil of serving G-d for the sole purpose of building prosperity in this world is being destroyed. Besorot Tovot.

41 Comments:

Anonymous josh said...

I'm sure that many visitors here are also regular visitors of Rabbi Pinchas Winston on www.thirtysix.org.

The site, very uncharacterisitcally, hasn't been updated lately because of a dear aunt who passed away overseas.

Baruch dayan emet,
B'sorot tovot.

8/30/2005 1:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is now 9:30 pm EST Monday night August 29. The flooding is now reported to be in eastern New Orleans city sections. People are being rescued from rooftops. 6 -12 feet of water fills the streets.

2 oil platforms have been uplifted by floods from their moorings. Southern Louisianna produces/refines 25% of USA gas.

The Governors of the 2 worst hit states are looking grim. Much death is feared to be discovered when boats and planes can get to victims.

Here is an email I sent to my website members regarding mida kenegged mida.

BS”D

Dear Messiah Watch International Member,

www.rabbiyess.com

One of the axioms of how God runs the universe is called measure for measure. In its simplest form it goes like this….if you steal you will be stolen from. If you kill you will be killed…etc.

For the past two weeks the world watched as Jews were forcibly removed from their homes in Gaza and then those homes were razed along with several synagogues. Global diplomacy exerted its maximum possible pressure on Ariel Sharon to go forward with this “peace plan.” Israel was threatened with its funding being cut off and America supporting Israel’s enemies if Israel did not heed America’s wishes.

The fact that the Jews were given the Holy Land by God… as the Bible attests to…was politely ignored.

As this Gaza expulsion was in progress Condi Rice found it necessary to blurt out that Gaza was not all that Israel was expected to vacate. She referred to the West Bank as being on the agenda for evacuation as well. After that comes Jerusalem.

While I pray for God’s Mercy to temper His Anger over this strong-arming of Israel to violate its Bible Laws I must also deal with known facts. Here are some known facts.

-Hurricane Katrina poses a major threat to all of America…not just the States in its path.

- Should this hurricane do what the experts are predicting then bodies of the buried and those of the recently dead, sewage, chemical spills, snakes, mosquitoes, vermin and rabies will pollute the flooded areas’ water and air. We are dealing with a very possible and imminent national health emergency arising here.

- Already gas industry experts are predicting a day of doom for America’s oil industry from this hurricane. The major U.S. refineries are in the Gulf of Mexico. Gas prices are going to skyrocket…and the possibility of war time type gas rationing is very possibly ahead. The implications to the global economy are terrifying.

- Already the news networks are talking about insurance companies being unable to sustain the insurance costs from Hurricane Katrina‘s damages.

- 100,000 people are too poor to afford to leave New Orleans and will face one of the worst hurricanes in U.S. history in a city below sea level with a strong likelihood that its levees will not withstand this hurricane.

Another axiom from the Jewish Bible (Torah) refers to the consequences that befall those in their dealings with Jews. It is an extension of measure for measure. Here it is from Genesis 12:13-

God "will bless those who bless the Jews and curse whoever curses the Jews."

Ahhhh…you chose to strong-arm the Jews to vacate their land that I (God) gave them. Now, measure for measure, I (God) will force you to taste such evacuation unpleasantness. Hurricanes are an act of God…not natural disasters. All of nature is part of God’s arsenal of Divine weapons…to manifest His Judgments.

Would you care for a more historical approach to this topic?

Here it is from Dennis Praeger:-

---------------------------------------------

Those who curse the Jews and those who bless the Jews

Posted: July 30, 2002
1:00 a.m. Eastern


© 2002 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

In 1973, during the Arab embargo on oil exports that followed the Yom Kippur War between Israel and Egypt, many Americans had to deal with embargo-induced hour-long lines at gas stations, gas rationing, and various setbacks to the economy. As a result, some called for our abandonment of Israel for the sake of oil.

Those voices were not heard among evangelical Christians.

In fact, in a television broadcast from his church to his many followers, the Rev. Jerry Falwell said that he would sooner give up his car and ride a bicycle than yield to Arab blackmail. Citing Genesis (12:3), he explained that God "will bless those who bless the Jews and curse whoever curses the Jews."

I have since heard this over and over from lay Christians calling my radio show and from Christian leaders with whom I have shared platforms.

I heard this again this past weekend in Colorado Springs, Colo., at the 25th Anniversary Celebration of Focus on the Family, where I spoke to a few thousand supporters of that influential evangelical organization. There are many reasons for the support of conservative Christians for Israel – along with social conservatives, the only group giving such support – but their belief that God blesses those who bless the Jews and curses those who curse the Jews plays a central role.

When I first heard this verse cited by the Rev. Falwell, I certainly found it encouraging to hear a major Christian figure say this to fellow Christians. But perhaps because I had just completed graduate work in the social sciences, my rational faculties simply dismissed the idea as more quaint than believable.

Over time, however, that quote stayed with me. Eight years later, when Rabbi Joseph Telushkin and I wrote a book explaining anti-Semitism ("Why the Jews? The Reason for Antisemitism," Simon & Schuster), we noted this verse. But now, after seeing the resurgence of anti-Semitism in the Arab and Muslim worlds and in Europe, after being asked by the publisher to write a new version of the book, and after hearing Christians repeatedly cite this verse, I feel compelled to finally take a position: Is this verse biblical poetry or verifiably true?

I am increasingly convinced that it is verifiably true.

I think of Spain, for example. One of the world's mightiest powers and most developed cultures in the 15th century, in 1492 it reached its zenith when it sent Christopher Columbus on a voyage that changed history. But the same year, it also expelled all its Jews and intensified the Spanish Inquisition against the many forced Jewish converts to Catholicism (converses). Spain then descended into a 500-year status as "the sick man of Europe."

I think of Germany (and Austria) as the cultural and intellectual center of Europe, if not the world, before World War II. Then Germany (with Austrians' help) murdered nearly every Jew in Europe. Germany lost over seven million people, was divided for a generation, and while it now thrives materially, culturally Germany has become irrelevant. Ask anyone, even an intellectual, to name one living German.

And I think about the world today. Look at who most blesses the Jews and who most curses them, and you decide whether the verse in Genesis has validity.

It is the United States that has, since its inception, most blessed the Jews and that does so almost alone today – in its support of the Jewish state against those who wish to exterminate it. By almost any reckoning, America has been, and remains, the most blessed of countries.

And it is the Arab world that curses the Jews. It rivals Nazi Germany for the ubiquity and intensity of its Jew-hatred. Look at its state. According to Arab scholars appointed by the United Nations to report on the state of Arab society, that part of the world lags behind the rest of humanity, including in most instances sub-Saharan Africa, in virtually every social, moral and intellectual indicator. And there is no question but that its half-century long preoccupation with destroying Israel has only increased the Arab world's woes.

No one can prove it is God who actively blesses those who bless the Jews and curses those who curse them. But, at the same time, the evidence historically and this very moment suggests that there is indeed a real connection between the state of a society and its treatment of the Jews.


Dennis Prager, one of America's most respected and popular nationally syndicated radio talk-show hosts, is the author of several books and a frequent guest on TV shows such as "Larry King Live," "The O'Reilly Factor" and "Hannity & Colmes."
-----------------------------------------

This is quickly coming to a rolling boil and is all part of the ultimate and imminent revelation to mankind regarding Rabbi M. M. Schneerson who is Judaism’s and mankind’s one and only true King Messiah.

Pray for the welfare of Jerusalem. Pray for America. Most of all pray for God’s Mercy in this hour of Divine Wrath…and what lies ahead.

Rabbi Moshe Yess

8/30/2005 4:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...evangelical christians...dennis prager...imminent revelation..."

Gag...gag...vomit!

8/30/2005 11:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oil Prices Up, Traders Await Katrina Data

By GEORGE JAHN, Associated Press Writer

VIENNA, Austria - The effects of Hurricane Katrina sent oil futures higher again Tuesday, as traders awaited damage reports from U.S. oil and gas refineries in the Gulf of Mexico.


Analysts said that even if Katrina did less harm than feared, its effects were bound to tighten the availability of already scarce refined products, thereby driving prices up further.

Gasoline and heating oil, which hit new closing highs on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Monday, continued their upward climb on Tuesday. A gallon of unleaded gas was fetching $2.0950 at midday in Europe, up more than 3 cents. Heating oil rose by nearly 2 cents, selling at $1.9255 a gallon.

Light, sweet crude oil for October deliver was at $67.90 a barrel, up 70 cents, in electronic trading on the Nymex. Prices are more than 50 percent higher than a year ago.

On London's International Petroleum Exchange, October Brent spiked $1.38 from Friday's settlement price to $66.25 a barrel. The IPE was closed Monday for a British banking holiday.

On Monday, Nymex futures jumped to an intraday record of $70.80 a barrel on signs that Katrina would barrel into U.S. facilities that account for a third of U.S. crude and a quarter of its natural-gas supplies. Prices fell back to close at $67.20 a barrel on reports that the Bush administration might release crude from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

But some analysts on Tuesday brushed aside such a move, saying the problem is not supply but refining capacity in the U.S., where refineries have been running near full output all year.

"The release of crude out of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is not as critical as making sure that there is enough refined product supply and that there are refineries to process the crude," said analyst Victor Shum from Texas-based consultants Purvin & Gertz.

"Even if there's available crude for release, if there's no refining capacity that they can use, what good is that?" Shum said.

At least eight Gulf Coast refineries in the path of Hurricane Katrina shut down or reduced operations Monday, according to company and federal reports. However, several others, including one of the largest — Exxon Mobil Refining & Supply Co.'s Baton Rouge, La., refinery — had not been affected by the storm or had resumed normal operations by late Monday.

Katrina, which had been ranked as high as a Category 5 storm, was blamed for at least 55 deaths and the evacuation of more than 700 offshore platforms and rigs. It slammed into a major oil production hub at a time when producers worldwide were already struggling to cope. The latest storm of the Atlantic hurricane season now threatens to constrain the supply of home heating fuels for the North American winter, a season of traditionally high demand.

Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries secretary general Adnan Shihab-Eldin reiterated Tuesday that the group will supply extra barrels of crude oil to refiners if they want them. Previous OPEC pledges have done little to ease market fears over supply.

But Venezuela, the world's fifth-largest exporter and OPEC member, said the cartel did not have the capacity to add barrels quickly enough to calm markets. Analysts also say OPEC can mostly add sour heavy crude to the market, while light, sweet crude was more in demand and easier to refine for products.

"The pain is in products. Refineries preemptively shut in some 2 million barrels a day, cutting gasoline output by 1 million barrels a day," said Enerygintel analyst John van Schaik. "And the hurricane season is not over yet."

A JPMorgan report released Tuesday said Katrina has already forced a production halt of about 630,000 barrels of crude a day from the Gulf of Mexico, 12 percent of daily output. That figure is likely to rise significantly in the coming days once assessments are made, analysts say.

The U.S. Minerals Management Service said Monday that 92 percent of the region's oil output was shut-in, or shut down, with more than 3 million barrels of production lost so far since Friday. The agency said 83 percent of natural gas output was shut-in, resulting in a loss of 15.5 billion cubic feet of production since Friday.

The Gulf of Mexico normally produces 2 million barrels of crude oil a day and about 10 billion cubic feet a day of natural gas.

Vienna's PVM Oil Associates warned that the shutdowns and "time-consuming restart procedures will deepen the 11-million-barrel deficit in gasoline stocks and eat into the 5.5-million-barrel cushion in heating oil stocks."

Reports from Citigroup Global Markets Inc. and ING on Tuesday warned of the impact that high oil would have on some Asian economies, which are already struggling from exchange-rate worries and inflationary pressures outside of energy concerns.

___

8/30/2005 3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do people feel a need to post entire lengthy articles? A headline and a link is sufficient for those who are interested.

8/30/2005 4:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As one 19th-century traveler put it, "New Orleans is surprising evidence of what men will endure, when cheered by the hopes of an ever-flowing tide of dollars and cents."

After Centuries of 'Controlling' Land, Gulf Learns Who's the Boss (NY Times)

8/30/2005 7:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chabad is resembling more and more that other messianic movement. Is this the Jewish version of the televangelist?

http://www.rabbiyess.com/Righteous_application.html

8/30/2005 7:25 PM  
Blogger MatzahNacho said...

Dov, I hope you don't truly intend to never post or comment again about possible future events or effects of events. Clearly none of us know the details of how things will play out for certain, but we all should feel comfortable having opinions and speculating, as long as we remember that's what we're doing.

8/30/2005 7:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2005/08/30/national/20050830_FLOOD_SLIDESHOW_1.html

8/30/2005 8:57 PM  
Blogger AharonBenjamin said...

In the generation when the Messiah comes, young men will insult the old, and old men will stand before the young [to give them honor]; daughters will rise up against their mothers, and daughters-in-law against their mothers-in-law. The people shall be dog-faced, and a son will not be abashed in his father's presence. It has been taught, R. Nehemiah said: In the generation of the Messiah's coming impudence will increase, esteem be perverted. [Sanhedrin 97a]

The Wisdom of the learned will degenerate; fearers of sin will be despised; and the truth will be lacking. Youths will put old men to shame. [Sotah 49b]

http://moshiach.com/explore/kb/index.php?page=index_v2&id=200&c=2

8/31/2005 9:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think anybody there puts it together that there are now 1 million US "refugees" because their government made Jewish refugees in the Land of Israel? that the oil paltforms and refineries were affected because Bush "bought" Saudi backing by giving up Israel? that a shoreline full of casinos were destroyed because the payoff to those who carried out the crime of uprooting Jewish families was to build casinos in Gaza? that their dead are left floating in floodwaters while the living are "evacuated" because the dead Jews buried in the soil of Eretz Yisrael were at the exact same time the storm struck being uprooted and relocated in the wake of the "evacuation" of every living Gazan Jew from their homes? that the homes of Americans now lie in ruins because their government representatives watched over the process as the former homes of the Jews of Gush Katif were demolished?

8/31/2005 10:29 AM  
Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Absolutely and more to the above. I am shaking at the measure for measure punishment being inflicted on the US right now.

8/31/2005 11:46 AM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

Just to illustrate your point, R'Dov, I read this morning that those who evacuated ahead of the storm and took shelter in hotels and motels were being told they had to leave now, despite the fact that they had nowhere else to go, because prior reservations require use of their rooms.

8/31/2005 12:53 PM  
Anonymous Cal Coolidge said...

...those who evacuated ahead of the storm and took shelter in hotels and motels were being told they had to leave now, despite the fact that they had nowhere else to go, because prior reservations require use of their rooms.

Business is business!

8/31/2005 12:59 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

Cal Coolidge, perhaps you are unaware that the same thing happened to the people of Gush Katif, which is the point here. The government sent them to hotels for what was supposed to be a minimum ten days stay and in some cases the next day or a few days later, they were told they had to vacate their rooms because of prior reservations. Many had no place else to go. Some are now living in a tent city in Tel Aviv. At least they did not have to contend with poisonous snakes, fire ants, and rabid raccoons.

R'Dov, if you did not already see it, take a look at this article which identifies Katrina's earliest beginnings as Tropical Depression #10.

(http://www.sptimes.com/2005/08/27/Weather/Picking_its_own_path.shtml)

I confirmed through the National Hurricane Service website that TD10 formed on Tisha b'Av.

8/31/2005 1:38 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

Here is the link:
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2005/pub/al102005.public.001.shtml?

Short synopsis:

BULLETIN
TROPICAL DEPRESSION TEN ADVISORY NUMBER 1
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
5 PM AST SAT AUG 13 2005

...NEW TROPICAL DEPRESSION FORMS IN THE ATLANTIC...

(The fast had already begun in Eretz Yisrael.)

Surely there is some significance.

8/31/2005 2:49 PM  
Anonymous simplejew said...

cnn said: As parts of devastated New Orleans slip into chaos with shootings and looting, Louisiana's governor declares Wednesday a day of prayer.

8/31/2005 3:31 PM  
Anonymous D'vorah Davida said...

It is unbecoming my beautiful Yidden, to gloat over the suffering of fellow human beings.

8/31/2005 5:58 PM  
Anonymous Mortimer Snit said...

New Orleans, the city of "eat and drink for tomorrow we die"

"Great Babylon is come up before me," shuddered Andrew Jackson's wife, Rachel, upon encountering New Orleans more than a century and a half ago. "Oh, the wickedness, the idolatry of this place."

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/31/national/nationalspecial/31charm.html

8/31/2005 5:58 PM  
Anonymous Mortimer Snit said...

Here's the link: NY times article

8/31/2005 5:59 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

D'vorah...no one is "gloating." We are marveling at the Al-mighty's power to rescue and save his children from oppressors. In their destruction we find the best hope for out future. Sorry that's the way it is. It didn't have to be that way, but that was their choice, not ours.

[Note: I take exception to yiddish terms when Hebrew suffices.]

8/31/2005 6:26 PM  
Anonymous D'vorah Davida said...

This is what I am talking about...

http://www.torah.org/learning/pirkei-avos/chapter4-24.html

8/31/2005 6:55 PM  
Anonymous Emesse Yid said...

I take exception to yiddish terms when Hebrew suffices.

Nebach. Fortuntately, we are presently being liberated from the root of this golus of Tzionut.

8/31/2005 7:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yehudit Yerushalami said:

"In their destruction we find the best hope for out future. Sorry that's the way it is. It didn't have to be that way, but that was their choice, not ours."

Just curious Yehudit Yerushalami, will you be saying this if chas v'shalom something happens to fellow JEWS in America, or Israel?

Do you have family in America?


D'vorah Davida, thank you for your heartfelt words towards not only fellow Jews but towards humanity!!

8/31/2005 7:39 PM  
Anonymous D'vorah Davida said...

http://www.torah.org/learning/pirkei-avos/chapter4-24.html

This is what I am talking about....

8/31/2005 7:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Katrina destroyed "every one" of the casinos, Barbour said.

CNN Video

Casinos are for games of chance. Did we khap the messer?

8/31/2005 7:51 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

From D'vorah's link: "The commentator Rabbeinu Yonah adds that there *is* a certain sense of elation we may feel. G-d's honor has been restored. Wickedness does not last forever. G-d ultimately sees to it that His enemies are punished. If He does so in this world, just a small amount of His glory has been revealed to mankind. And for that, we may rejoice.

8/31/2005 8:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

D'vorah Davida said...
This is what I am talking about...

http://www.torah.org/learning/pirkei-avos/chapter4-24.html

Devorah, the principle of "When your enemy falls don't rejoice", does not apply to Gentiles. Please see Maseches Megillah 16a.

8/31/2005 8:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yehudit Yerushalami,

Sometimes you really sound like a rasha.

8/31/2005 9:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rabbi Yossi Nemes, is the Chabad director of Baton Rouge, LA and has sent out a call for help. His area and its surroundings have been devastated by the winds and floods caused by Hurricane Katrina.


WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY NOW YEHUDIT?


For all of you kind and caring people here is where you can send help

1. Make checks payable to Chabad, write in the memo “For disaster relief Fund” and mail to: Chabad of Coral Springs, N. University Dr, Coral Springs, FL 33065

2. Contact the office for credit card donations.

954-344-4855

(For JTA story on Rabbi Nemes, scroll down below)



From The JTA

“Three Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries remained in New Orleans to help residents who couldn't leave the city.

Among them, was Rabbi Yossi Nemes. Nemes had received a panicked phone call from a visiting Jewish family that had been evicted from their hotel, which was shuttering up against the storm, a Chabad spokesman told JTA.

The family couldn't make it to the Super Dome quickly enough to miss the storm, and was concerned for its safety. Nemes decided to stay in his own home and take in the visitors. Nemes could not be reached by telephone. Thirteen people are now staying on the top floor of his home, where water is running through the roof. The first floors have been flooded and toxic water is coursing through the taps, the Chabad spokesman said.”
Back to top

8/31/2005 9:11 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

Those who falsely accuse any of us of "gloating" and taking pleasure in other people's suffering are committing a grave aveira since this is most definitely not the case.

Maybe you should remove the plank from your own eye before you offer to help me take the splinter out of mine.

I believe the quote from Rabbi Yonah supports my earlier remark.

Someone asked:

"Just curious Yehudit Yerushalami, will you be saying this if chas v'shalom something happens to fellow JEWS in America, or Israel?

Do you have family in America?"

All of my family is in America and they have been warned. I will not ask HaShem to withhold the geulah for their sakes or for the sake of other short-sighted Jews who refuse to leave. That would mean to wish more suffering on the Jews of EY, since the exile must be destroyed in order for EY to ascend.

Those with children and spouses knew before there were children and spouses that this time must surely come. Regardless of the reason, remaining behind is a choice that you make and it brings with it grave consequences.

The Jews of EY have been suffering for years. Why do you think you should be immune?

8/31/2005 9:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that's what I call Ahavas Yisrael!!

If one child misbehaves, and the other one starts cheering -- "Yeah, Dad, give him the punishment he deserves! More dessert for me, tonight!" No nachas for old Dad from that boy. And that's if there really has been a misbehaving child at all...

Fortunately, Moshiach and Hashem do not have such an attitude towards Hashem's children, bnei Yisrael. We will all be redeemed together. The thought saddens you, YY? Yaakov Avinu is going slowly because the flocks and sheep are tender.

8/31/2005 9:25 PM  
Blogger Yehudit Yerushalmi said...

The gemara (Yoma 9b) tells a story. Reish Lakish was swimming in the Jordan when one of the Amoraim of Bavel approached. Reish Lakish said: “I hate you people of Bavel.” He continued to explain that because the Babylonian Jewish community did not come back to Eretz Yisrael in sufficient numbers in Ezra’s time, the settlement in Eretz Yisrael succumbed to deterioration and destruction.

http://www.eretzhemdah.org/hemdatyamim/5764/balak64/moreshet.htm

...Since the implication of the Gemara in Yoma (9b) is that the negative connotation that the Rabbis attached to the phrase "sinat chinam" has the emphasis on the "chinam" aspect of it, the opposite of "sinat chinam", hatred for no reason, would legitimately be "sinat sachar", doing it for a good reason. While it is not very "nice" to talk about hating someone - when we examine the concept in the Torah and in the Rambam, the problem is not the existence of the "sina" but how and/or when it is done.

http://www.torah.org/learning/maharal/tishabav.html

8/31/2005 10:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some look for a heter to love a fellow Jew...others look for a heter to hate him.

In this generation we are not Amoraim.

8/31/2005 10:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And some look for a heter to avoid living in Israel. There's enough sin to go around.

I just saw on TV about a dozen coffins sitting under the baking sun of a Biloxi beach. At least those unearthed from the Gaza beach will be immediately reburied. I pity the souls of those whose bodies are left to float aimlessly in the flood waters. What a horror!

8/31/2005 11:36 PM  
Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Wow I must admit that I did not expect the spate of anger for and against Jews being here in Eretz Yisrael this time during the thick of the War of Gog W. Magog. For those in Chul please desire to be here as soon as possible. Your geshmackt lifestyles are coming to a close, but your desire to be here should be because you want to help perfect G-d's world most effectively. Desiring to be here should be intimately intertwined with the above purpose.

Escaping the disasters that might yet befall America should be secondary to the above. Yet, lest you think that it will not get worse, please do not fool yourselves. I say this realizing that many are trapped in America because of debts and other pressing financial or medical situations that prevent their true desires from being fulfilled. For those you do not desire to be here as soon as possible, you should take stock of your spiritual self. It is for that, that you will need to account before G-d. I say this without malice.

It is just a matter of fact that when Jews are suffering in Eretz Yisrael in order that the rest of the world can prosper, one needs to wonder whether their geshmackt way of life is continuing to help them gather sparks of purity through mitzva observance or whether they are helping to feed the husks of impurity that surround them. True, Hashem desires our attempts to cleave to him through mitzvot no matter where we are. The Ramchal in "The Way of HaShem" discusses the delicate balance between our work on perfecting ourselves in G-d's eyes through character development and mitzva observance and how these things lead to the perfection of the world while we are working on ourselves. Yet, when Lavan's face changes, the Shekhinah (the Divine Presence) is on His/Her way out the door. Yakov Avinu left Lavan's house when his face changed. Perhaps those who worked for the re-election of Gog W. to Bait Lavan (The White House) should take a good look at his face these days. Summary investigations of AIPAC for no good reason and fears about speaking up to the man that many Orthodox Jews just helped re-elect about Gush Katif provide a convincing argument to the fact that the face of Lavan is not the same as it was even one year ago. (Actually, I believe that this was always Gog W.'s face. He just needed your votes.) Yet, his outward face has definitely changed. Since the beginning of the Al Aksa Intafada, signs were posted in America that prosperity there depended on "Israeli restraint" to vicious random slaughter. Bush's Saudi handlers would have it no other way. In short, the Shekhina already was knocking hard, "I am getting ready to leave this great American exile. Do you hear me knocking!" Now it has reached the point that many (but not all) American Jews are afraid to loudly cry out in an effective organizational way against the destruction of Jewish communities in Eretz Yisrael. By this point the Shekhina has left the platform. (The platform is now one big oily mess!)

G-d in His Infinite Wisdom will gather the Golah (the lagging exiles) after Mashiach comes too, but for the sake of easing his coming, for G-d's sake and for ours, please desire intensely to be here now even if you cannot get here for whatever legitimate reason. Try to come to terms with the fact that although there is always eternal reward for mitzvot observance, the effect of doing so now in Chul now that the Shekhina has left the platform is to feed the klipot, the husks of spiritual impurity that are around you. At the very least, those husks are now demanding an even heavier portion of tax on your mitzvah observance. I realize in this way the Creator is patient with His lagging sheep even if they are lagging for legitimate reasons. Just at this stage of the War of Gog W. (think U) Magog if your reasons are legit, at least desire to be here.

Enough said on this subject. NO HATRED HERE. With love, Dov

Also today is Yom Kippur Katan, the day before Rosh Hodesh Elul. Of course that day is really Shabbat this year, but let us all fast until noon tomorrow and reflect on our need to do teshuva for the next 40 days beginning on Saturday night. Also reflect on how Esau does his 40 days of repentence during his 40 day period of penitence (between Ash Wednesday and Easter). How does he spend the day before in preparation for his 40 days? The place most notorious for the debauchery preceding his 40 days of penitence is now sitting in several feet of water. While many decent folk have suffered and are continuing to suffer in this awesome tragedy, it is appropriate to reflect on what we should do to appropriately prepare for the Days of Awe on this Yom Kippur Katan. We should not treat the day before the 40 days as a day of wanton pleasure with no serious reflection, G-d forbid. I have a sense that this 40 day period of penitence may be the most awesome period of prep. in history. Just a sense, no prophesy. Let us prepare properly for the 2nd year of Sukkot, the year of Yitzkhak (Isaac). More next week on the unfolding judgment also an article soon on the year 5765, the first year of Sukkot, the year of Avraham. Remember in this year G-d has cursed those who have cursed us, in both cases with water. Yes, sadly America has misused its blessing for helping out so generously with the victims of the tsunami. Until now America was blessed this year with economic bounty for its chessed during the aftermath of the tsunami, but it has spoiled its bracha with this vile sin of destruction here in the Holy Land. America was warned during Hurricane Ivan on Rosh HaShana to not play G-d with Jewish communities here. Gog W. wanted His seat on the Heavenly Throne. G-d showed that His seat is not vacant for Gog to sit there.

9/01/2005 1:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that it's not a matter of "gloating" - it's a matter of seeing that Hashem is coming to the rescue of Yehudim by giving an obvious warning to the most dangersous nation in the world to Yehudim.

Sharon explicitly stated that "Israel cannot hold Gush Katif if even Israel's best friend America demands that it leave."

And the message is not lost. Churches all over the States have long been posting signs with the posuk, "I will curse those who curse you."

And the xians had a few rallies demanding that Bush stop endangering America by pressuring the Jews into life threatening concessions.

Finally, there is no way that any Jew who has follwed disengagement to not see the multitude of parallels, including even listening to the news of the difficulty of suddenly having to find new schools (with unfamiliar faces) for .2% of the population at the same time that the parents of those children search for new homes and jobs. [Yes, the same exact % of Jews were thrown out of their schools, homes and jobs while the White House released statements of "Good, good, keep going, good, you missed a house there - move that bulldozer, ok, steady now, knock it down ... watch out, a protestor in tzitit, send some goons to smash his skull, no no, harder, ok, good, good... next house..."

Eliyahu
Oleh with plenty of family ignoring the fact that the kabbalists said before 9/11 that America's malach fell in shamayim and the fall of America would follow sooner or later.

9/01/2005 1:40 AM  
Anonymous SimpleJew said...

people, please don't let your frustration out on each other. in the end we are all in it together.

yesterday i was listening to the isrealnationalradio.com and someone made a very good (in my opinion) comment...
he said, that while he is not a spokesman for G-d, it is obvious that the two "expultions" and the suffering of people are connected. it is an opportunity for the whole world to see that suffering of the jewish people is NOT irrelavent to other nations. when the Beis Hamikdash was distroyed other nations thought that it was only Jews who got to miss out. they failed to understand that the B.H. has a function for everyone and when it's gone everyone suffers. same hear Jews have a function in Erezt Yisroel and when they are gone everyone else suffers with them.

(simplejew continues) no one is happy about these sufferings, yet we must express our appriciation that Hashem, with great clarity, is showing the world how we are all connected.

i pray that everyone gets it sooner rather than later, because obviously Hashem will make sure that His message gets across.

may we all merit the immediate redemption!

9/01/2005 2:27 AM  
Blogger AharonBenjamin said...

Amen.

I was at a shiur this evening at which the Rabbi giving the shiur suggested that in his opinion the highlighted words below are referring to the people of Gush Katif:

"In the footsteps of Moshiach, Chutzpah will increase. Inflation will increase. Vines will have fruit but wine will be expensive. The government will turn into heretics. There will be no rebuke. Places where chachamim met will be used for zinus. The Galil will be destroyed and Gavlan will be decimated. People from the border will go from place to place and they will not be pitied. The wisdom of chachamim will be lost. Those who fear Hashem will be despised. Truth will be hidden. Children will shame older people and old people will stand up for youngsters. A son will shame his father. A daughter will stand up to her mother and a daughter-in-law to her mother-in-law. Our enemies will be part of our house. The face of the generation will be like dogs A son will not be embarrassed before his father. There will be no one to rely upon. We can only rely on our father in heaven."

http://www.abtorah.com/mishnayos2002/jun24.htm

Ksiva vechasima tova leshana tova umesuka bgashmius ubruchnius!

9/01/2005 11:09 AM  
Blogger One God for All said...

Besides agrreing with everything said, I should like to comment that I loved the expression "Gog W. and his puppets here in Israel" and would like to use it in my own blog.

Shana Tova,
Alisa

9/01/2005 2:21 PM  
Anonymous sultan knish said...

http://sultanknish.blogspot.com

The Hand of G-d that brought the flood

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Tropical Depression 10 formed on August 13, Erev Tisha Ba'av. As the Jews who were loyal to their G-d, their people and their land prayed and fasted, meterologists watched it unconcerned. They reassured the public that the storm would go north of them. Hurricanes very rarely go south.

As the preperations were underway by the Sharon regime to evict the Jews from their land and an army of expellers were assembled, the storm built. As the Bush administration and its Arab allies relished the first of many surrenders of Israel to the enemy, the storm grew.

Motzei Tisha Ba'av, the date set for the expulsion of Jews from their homes across Gush Katif, came and the storm seemed to fade away. Meterologists were certain it was no further threat much like the people of Gush Katif. Day after day families were evicted from their homes, crying children sent out into tent cities, mothers and fathers forced into buses and denied sanitary facilities.

On August 23 Israel completed the planned expulsions at Homesh and Sa-Nur. The gates were battered down by soldiers waving clubs and the doors of homes shattered. Limor Har-Melech, whose husband Shuli was killed by terrorists three years ago moved from one group of soldiers to another, preaching, crying and begging, to no avail.

George W. Bush congratulated Sharon for this act of ethnic cleansing on that same day and committing to in his own words, "rebuild the settlements for Gaza -- for the people of Gaza." Meaning that the destroyed towns would be rebuilt for the terrorists who with the aid of his efforts to secure them a state would now settle there.

On August 23, Tropical Depression 10 merged with another disturbance and became Tropical Depression 12. Air Force Reserve squadron planes began flying through the eye every three hours, moving 105 miles from one end of the storm to the other, dropping cylinders that took snapshots of the storm as they fell 2,000 feet per minute.

On August 24th, the State Department warned Israel against extending the security fence to Maaleh Adumim and warned against any further 'settlement activity.' On the 24th Katrina was upgraded to a tropical storm and turned west, instead of going north as hurricanes usually do, defying the natural weather systems. On the next day Katrina made landfall for the first time in Florida killing eleven and cutting power off to millions.

On August 27th, Bush delivered a radio address to the nation celebrating the deportation of thousands of Jews. On August 27th Katrina became a Category 3 storm with winds of over 145 miles an hour. That same day Bush had to declare a State of Emergency in Louisana.

On August 28th embodened by Israel's retreat for the first time in a long time terrorists carried out a succesfull suicide bombing. On August 28th, Sharon defied the decision of the Rabbis and stated that the synagogues left behind would be demolished and a decision was finalized on uprooting the graves of the dead. On August 28th Katrina was declared a Category 4 storm and mayor of New Orleans called for the evacuation of the city.

Soon familiar scenes were being reenacted. An evacuation that was poorly managed was scheduled resulting in chaos and misery. Evacuees were sent to hotels only to be forced to leave shortly. Belongings were left behind and lawlessness and looting broke out combined with police incompetence. As in Gush Katif and Homesh, residents were being pulled from rooftops. Fires burned in the streets of New Orleans as they had in the streets of the expelled towns.

Graves had to be dug up as they had in Gush Katif and homes were destroyed. The oil refineries of the oil industry that has caused America to sell out Israel to the Arabs were severely incapacitated. As a casino had been planned to be constructed on the ruins of Gush Katif, the Mississipi gambling industry was shattered.

On August 30th Sharon declared that yet more towns would be evacuated in the West Bank at an unspecified date. On August 30th the levees broke flooding most of New Orleans and rendering the city uninhabitable. It was not the weakest levees that broke but the section that had been repaired and worked on the most as if to say that it did not break because it was weak but because a higher force willed it. As the last of those expelled departed from their tent city in Tel Aviv they had been expelled from, the complete evacuation of New Orleans was declared.

As it had been declared that no Jew would remain in Gush Katif and it would be given over to murderers and thieves, so too no one will be permitted to remain in New Orleans and it has been given over into the hands of looters and armed gunmen. It is said that it will be months before New Orleans is rebuilt, while others debate if it is worth rebuilding at all.

Who would have said a month ago that a major American city would lie empty and in ruins? Who would have believed it possible? What greater warning could there be than for a city on the southern coast of the United States to be rendered an uninhabited wasteland full of demolished buildings and human jackals picking among its ruins after towns in Israel were rendered into uninhabitated wastelands with terrorists and thieves picking among their ruins.

Many wish to call what has happened and what is happening, a 'Mikra', a chance happening. Yet Tanach tells us that there cannot be a catastrophe in a city unless Hashem wills it. Still others have protested that G-d does not behave in this way. In Yirmiyahu 18:8-9 we see otherwise.

"At one instant I may speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up and to break down and to destroy it. but if that nation turn from their evil, because of which I have spoken against it, I repent of the evil that I thought to do unto it."

It is incumbent on us to recognize and investigate the ways and doings of G-d. Those who argue that we should class all events as unknowable are ignoring the fact that G-d sends warnings. The goal of those warnings is to bring people to repentance and change. Not merely Jews but non-Jews as well. Does he mean these warnings not to be understood? Does he mean us to simply dismiss them as unknowable?

In the absence of living prophets we may not be certain of things but is it incumbent on us to explore and to try to understand the ways of G-d and when messages are being sent, we may not ignore them either. By ignoring the warnings, we are ignoring G-d. Ignoring the warnings that are recieved will only cause the next warning to be more severe. If we do not recognize that Yad Hashem, the Hand of G-d did this we are denying the role of G-d in this world and it will be affirmed till we can deny it no longer.

The NOAA/ National Weather Service has raised the 2005 atlantic hurricane season outlook warning that the bulk of this season's storms are still to come.

9/01/2005 9:42 PM  

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