Archive for the ‘Murder’ Category

Anyone Whose (Alleged) Representatives are Engaged in "Dialogue" With Zionists, Pay Close Attention to This

January 29, 2011

Anyone paying attention already knew that “dialogue” with “The Jews” is a one-way racket, but the depth of the fraud is far worse than most could imagine.

Tear up the Palestine Papers

Betrayed by their leaders, Palestinians have to start their struggle again in a spirit of national reconciliation and unity

Abdel Bari Atwan – Gulf News
January 30, 2011

Trusted colleagues inform me that the cache of 1.600 leaked documents now known as the ‘Palestine Papers’ came from three main sources: Palestinian nationalists who are opposed to Palestinian National Authority (PNA) policies and reject their role as negotiators; former members of the PNA who have defected due to differences with the leadership and have old scores to settle; and people who anticipated financial reward for their contribution.

While Palestinians reel with shock at the contents of confidential minutes, e-mails, memos and handwritten notes, the PNA’s leadership is equally horrified at having been discovered courting Israeli and US officials and selling its countrymen down the line.

It should come as no surprise that the PNA is so porous. The organisation’s internal affairs are chaotic and its leaders embarrassingly amateurish.

As countless commentators have pointed out, not one of the group currently brokering the future of Palestine — Mahmoud Abbas, Saeb Erekat, Ahmad Qorei, Yasser Abed Rabbo and Salam Fayyad — has a current mandate to do so. Mahmoud Abbas’ presidential term, for example, expired on January 9, 2009, when he unilaterally re-elected himself!

Any notion that this desperation to cling to power was motivated by anything other than self interest, has now been extinguished.

The Palestine Papers reveal a gut-wrenching level of PNA collusion — against its own people — with Israel, the US and Britain. It is also clear that for PNA leaders the enemy is Hamas, not Israel.

Infamous for human rights abuses and imprisoning its rivals without trial, the PNA’s security apparatus — we now discover — was founded on a blueprint commissioned by Tony Blair and developed by the British secret service, MI6, in 2004. Israel is close at hand to help: in a 2006 conversation with America’s Keith Dayton, Erekat celebrated the PNA’s ‘security liaison with Israel’.

At its most sinister, this unpalatable collaboration includes a casual approach to the murder of fellow Palestinians: documents from 2005 detail a discussion between Israeli defence minister, Shaul Mofaz and PNA interior minister, Nasser Yousuf about Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades leader Hassan Al Madhoun. “We know his address … Why don’t you kill him?” Mofaz asked.

Yousuf replied that ‘instructions’ had been given but complains ‘you haven’t offered anything’. In the event Madhoun was murdered by Israeli forces. In September 2009, Erekat told a US official that “we have killed our own people to … establish one authority, one gun and the rule of law”.

The documents reveal an incomprehensible attitude to Israel’s winter 2008-09 onslaught (code-named Operation Cast Lead) in which 1,400 Palestinians — nearly half of them women and children — lost their lives.

Clandestine meeting

First we discover that Israeli intelligence chief, Amos Gilad, alerted Abbas prior to the attack and met with no resistance. Then from WikiLeaks, we learn that on December 29, 2008, PNA security chiefs held a clandestine meeting with top Israeli military and intelligence officials: not, as we would have hoped, to angrily berate their bloodthirsty enemy, but to discuss the best way to handle anti-Israel protests in the West Bank. According to the US Embassy cable, “the two sides agreed to expedite coordination and exchange information on disturbances”.

On October 2, 2009, Abbas blocked a UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) resolution supporting the Goldstone Report. The resolution would have paved the way for a war crimes prosecution against the architects of ‘Operation Cast Lead’ including Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni (then foreign minister).

Leaked minutes from a Washington meeting between Senator George Mitchell and Erekat suggest that the UNHRC vote was used as a bargaining tool: Mitchell promised to broker a resumption of the stalled peace process and to talk up the Palestinians’ demands in exchange for Abbas calling for the vote to be deferred. It was during this meeting that Erekat enthusiastically insisted that “we want to help the Israelis”.

The papers consistently portray a PNA more concerned with remaining in power than the welfare of fellow Palestinians. In 2008, it blocked the release of 450 Arab prisoners in exchange for kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. Qorei bluntly informed Livni that such a move would “make Hamas appear as a hero before the public and that Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] gives speeches only”.

Also in 2008, concerned that Israel’s brutal siege of Gaza was being thwarted by Palestinians tunnelling along the Egyptian border, Qorei urged Livni to “occupy the [Philadelphi] crossing”.

Six months before Livni personally oversaw ‘Operation Cast Lead’, Qorei flattered the Kadima leader saying “I’d vote for you”. The papers are littered with such sycophancy: Erekat frequently addresses Netanyahu by his pet name ‘Bibi’.

Yet the Israeli and US negotiators showed little respect for the PNA group. In 2008, the Israelis presented a map of proposed land swaps, but wouldn’t let the Palestinians keep a copy. The sight of the then 73-year-old Abbas copying the map on to a paper napkin is truly painful.

The end of the Palestine Papers’ depressing saga sees an increasingly desperate Palestinian team surrendering one key national position after another: it offers Israel nearly all of occupied east Jerusalem (Erekat cringe-makingly refers to it by its Hebrew name, Yerushalayim); it agrees to Israel annexing its illegal colonies and it limits the right of return to just 10,000 refugees. The Israelis scorn every offer and cold-bloodedly ask for more. Then US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice expertly extinguishes the last flickerings of Palestinian pride with the suggestion that its refugees could be transferred to Latin America.

The PNA leaders and negotiators have completely discredited themselves and the Peace Process. As valiant protesters put their lives on the line for regime change in Egypt, Jordan and Yemen, Abbas and his men must realiee that the days of autocratic, oppressive and corrupt Middle Eastern regimes are numbered.

Abbas is making it known that he intends to resign in September — no doubt hoping that a miracle will occur in the intervening time to save him. The whole group should go immediately, but will probably cling to power until the last possible moment, unwilling to relinquish the material benefits and status they have become addicted to.

There can be no more negotiations between today’s Israeli government and these fake Palestinian representatives. The Palestinian people have to start their struggle again in a spirit of national reconciliation and unity, never forgetting that they are an occupied people, resisting all the evils of Israeli occupation through civil disobedience and, if necessary, intifada.

The Palestine Papers represent a shameful history that should now be torn up.

http://gulfnews.com/opinions/columnists/tear-up-the-palestine-papers-1.754082

Advertisements

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein Rouses Talmud Apologists

August 4, 2007

The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein (who is also a professor of Talmudic law at Loyola Law School) writes an editorial which on the surface appears to be a response to Noah Feldman’s piece published in the New York Times Magazine in which he candidly speaks of the Judaic tradition of fake benevolence and legalistic murder of non-“Jews” written about here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/07/new-york-times-reveals-talmudic.html

A few observations: Adlerstein admits not only that there are many passages in the canon of Judaism which are hostile to non-“Jews,” but he also admits that Judaics have covered up the offensive passages as a matter of policy. He clearly takes the position that the offensive passages should be dealt with now only because the debate is unavoidable due to the work of serious researchers of Judaism which is blacked out by the establishment press but which is being spread far and wide via the internet and self-published works.

Adlerstein seems to believe that the murderous racial supremacism of Judaism can be cleared by employing a two-wrongs-make-a-right fallacy of comical disproportion. He attempts to relativise the lying, perversion, murder, hate, racial conceit and double standards of Judaism with the polemics of St. John Chrysostom as if Chrysostom’s sermons are something that Christians have been fearfully hiding for 1600 years. What a laugh! The rabbinic texts have been hidden precisely because there’s something terrible within them. And there’s not the slightest hint from the rabbi that any apology is in order for these offensive passages, much less any revision of them, even as the rabbis take an active part in rewriting Christian exegesis, liturgy, doctrine, history, and teaching material in their image. Always, always the double standard.

Adlerstein sets up a double-minded quagmire revealing many previously hidden rabbinic teachings but then makes the astounding claim that halacha prevents “Jews” from practicing the very things that halacha mandates!

So it appears that a debate has been forced. I don’t know what to expect from such a debate given that we live in a time when Judaics “hold the swords” (to paraphrase Rabbi Jacob Neusner) and when what they’re defending is in essence a tradition of deceit. I’d expect the rabbis to fight every bit as dirty as they have in Talmud debates in past history, and as they do today, jailing their holocaust debate opponents. And I’d expect the Vatican to take the rabbis’ side completely. Perhaps this will, at the very least, expose the “Judeo-Christian tradition” farce and the “elder brothers in the faith” mockery for what they truly are.

Noah Feldman And The Fear Of Being Different

By: Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein
Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Ayatollahs in business suits is what Noah Feldman would have the world believe we all are. If the Orthodox were going to leave him out of his alma mater’s reunion picture just because he married out, then Noah Feldman was going to out the Orthodox.

His tell-all expose painted a picture, as he saw it, of the inherent primitiveness and backwardness of Orthodoxy. We may look modern, but scratch the surface, and we all harbor beliefs that are inconsistent with the more enlightened values of Harvard Square.

In his New York Times Magazine article, Feldman made a point of highlighting practices and attitudes toward non-Jews that he bargained would – or should – make us uncomfortable. We have always preferred to keep them under wraps, not always quite sure how to explain them to others, or even to ourselves, but quite sure that if others found out about them, they would hold them against us.

In making us face up to them Noah Feldman may have done us a favor. We have dealt with “problematic” texts in roughly the same way for the better part of a millennium. The old way will not work any longer, and the sooner we realize and react appropriately, the better.

The medieval church did a good job – often aided and abetted by Jewish apostates – in ferreting out what they saw as anti-gentile and anti-Christian nastiness in the Gemara. Modern anti-Semitic groups have revived the practice, and there are no shortage of websites that will gladly direct you to the exact places in the Talmud that prove we detest all non-Jews, and actively promote their demise.

(I am not saying, God forbid, that Noah Feldman is an anti-Semite.)

One of the prosecution witnesses in the Beilis blood libel was a Fr. Justinas Pranaitis, possibly hired because of his 1892 work “Talmud Unmasked,” still used by Jew-haters today. Most Jews are unaware of the literally thousands of hate sites on the Internet because we simply don’t run into the untermenschen who hang out on such sites. The New York Times Magazine, however, is harder to run from.

Our first line of defense was part of the shah-shtil mentality: we ran for cover. We tried to hide these passages, and if that failed, we reacted with surgically applied apologetics. Someone was always prepared to offer an explanation that seemed somewhat reasonable, and if presented by someone who looked sage and rabbinic enough, the non-Jews could be placated.

This approach will no longer work, because the nature of communications today insures that there are no longer any secrets, period. Almost anything you have ever said or written to anyone can come back to haunt you. An apologetic interpretation of a Talmudic passage – even if entirely correct and authoritative – is often not the only one on the Jewish street. For every politically correct explanation, there is a very non-PC one that can be dredged up in moments through the right search engine There will be many people, perhaps entire communities, who take a different approach. Their little secret will surface to haunt the rest of the Orthodox world.

There is no longer any option other than to own up to difficult sources and uncomfortable attitudes, and to deal openly with them. If we don’t, others will do the talking for us, which we can ill afford. We must learn where these passages are, acknowledge them, and learn to deal with them without hesitation. We will find more understanding and acceptance than we might think.

The first step is to weed out the misquotes and the misunderstood sources. Nine times out of ten, the proof-texts cited by critics are goofy errors. We must learn what the errors are, and be quick to demonstrate the fallacies.

The remaining ten percent can still do much damage. But they don’t have to – and won’t for most decent people – for several reasons.

First of all, many of them are a product of their times. Certain references to early Christians are a case in point. Can you discuss these passages with a believing Catholic without upping your life insurance? Of course you can. The person who taught me how was a Catholic priest and scholar with whom I once shared a platform at Loyola Law School.

A question arose about John Chrysostom, the fourth century Church Father who put the charge of deicide on the map. His vitriol against Jews was surpassed by none and was embraced for centuries thereafter, including by the Nazis.

Chrysostom remains a saint in the Church, and many Jews get unhinged by the mention of his name. The priest, however, was completely unfazed by the question, and calmly related that in the fourth century the Church was fighting for survival and felt very pressured by Judaism. Besides which, it was characteristic of the times for people to use the most extreme and abusive language in dealing with opponents. Contemporary Christians simply reject the entire package. Essentially he said, “That’s the way we once behaved, regrettably. We’ve moved on since then.”

What’s good for the goose is good for the gandz. Mutatis mutandis, some disparaging remarks in the Talmud against early Christians should be understandable to today’s Christians, if only as an exercise in parity. We ought not – and should not – expect them to be pleased by the language. But we have an argument in equity that they should be able to tolerate their existence, in the same way that similar (or much worse) passages regarding the Jews appear in their literature.

The passages in the Talmud that deal with Jesus himself (if they in fact do – the Rishonim, our great medieval commentators, were split on this), in far less than complimentary fashion, can be dealt with similarly.

There are yet other passages that are extremely dismissive of categories of non-Jews. Many of them, in fact, were aimed not at all non-Jews but at the idolatrous near-savages known to Chazal. To be sure, there are disputes going back to the Rishonim as to which passages refer to which groups. But many Jews are unaware as to how many mainstream decisors restricted the application of certain Gemaros to idolators, explicitly excluding the civilized folks among whom we live today.

It is also more than probable that part of the reason that this distinction is not embraced more widely is connected to the horrific experience Eastern European Jews in particular had with their non-Jewish neighbors for hundreds of years. It is frustrating to many of us that some people have not sufficiently appreciated the difference between the NKVD and the IRS. Even in this regard, my experience is that non-Jews of good will (and there are huge numbers of them in this great country) understand that habits born of eight hundred years of experience can take a while to extinguish, and are far less demanding and hostile than we might think.

There are other Talmudic sections that are not products of special conditions, and still spell out favorable treatment of Jews relative to non-Jews. These, too, are a cause for consternation for many Jews. They should not be. Almost every religious group we know of makes some claim to specialness, usually both theoretically and practically. These groups celebrate difference, and readily accept that other communities are entitled to extend privileges to the inner group as well. We Jews do not stand out in this regard so much as fit into the general trend.

Resorting to cheap innuendo, Feldman creates images and identities aimed at conveying to his reader the notion that Orthodox Jews do not, in fact, fit into the modern world. (This is not surprising. Feldman provided legal help pro bono to the city of Tenafly, New Jersey, when it sought to bar the construction of an eruv.)

Tefillin he pairs with the painful cilice of the priest-zealot of The Da Vinci Code; the silly little “fringed prayer shawl” that Jews wear under their shirts he pairs with the holy undergarment of Mormons, asking aloud why it is that Joe Lieberman was not perceived the way some see the Mormonism of Mitt Romney – as something “weird.”

Feldman, I believe, is blind here as well to the truth. Whether he wins the presidency or not, the vast majority of Americans will not reject Mitt Romney because they see Mormon belief and practice as beyond the pale.

I will put it simply: Why don’t I worry about the unusualness of Mormon belief? Mostly because I have never met a Mormon I didn’t like. (I’m sure that I could be introduced to a few, and there is also the irritating issue of posthumous baptism of Jews that many – especially Holocaust survivors – are upset about, particularly the glacial progress toward a definitive solution.)

My point is that for most Americans, actions are far more important than theology. They really don’t care what other people believe, as long as they act appropriately. If they are good, caring citizens, their beliefs – and claims of specialness in the eyes of the Lord – are just not so important.

Jews should listen up. Be a good neighbor, and you can sing a three-part harmonic ode to R. Yehuda Halevi’s special Jewish soul and most non-Jews will not hold it against you. Parts of certain chassidic communities are hardly the leaders of the pack in pushing for intergroup connection and acceptance, but tens of thousands of New Yorkers will remember them as the group that set up tables on 9/11 to provide drinks for the dazed and thirsty who fled across the bridge to Brooklyn.

There is one final argument. Part of what goes through our heads every time we encounter a Gemara that emphasizes some Jewish-gentile difference is that non-Jews will sense a slippery slope, at the base of which wait crusading Jews ready to behead all of them and impale their remains on sharpened Magen Davids.

We must confidently know ourselves – and convey to others – an overarching reality about traditional Jews: We are a legal community. Hostile attitudes can go only so far without hitting a firm halachic roadblock. No matter what animus some Jews might have for outsiders, they don’t murder, rape or maim. They cannot steal, lie or deceive without running afoul of clear-cut halachot.

Putting it all together, we have nothing to be ashamed of, nothing to hide. Putting aside those who have it in for us no matter what we do, the good folks of America will not find our life-style off-putting. I have been challenged several times by Jews who have rejected tradition. “Aren’t you ashamed to be part of system that says X, Y and Z about non-Jews? What if they find out?” They react with incredulity when I tell them that I discuss X, Y and Z openly with non-Jewish friends without embarrassment and without ill effect. But it is the truth.

Noah Feldman makes the mistake of so many others who believe that it is dangerous and unacceptable for Jews to act or believe differently from their fellow citizens. He is part of that large group of Jews who have felicitously been described as “proud to be ashamed Jews.”

It is a malady common to people who have little confidence in their own belief system. It has little to do with vast swaths of America, inhabited by people who are proud of their own beliefs and sympathetic to the strongly-held beliefs of others. If we remember that, we needn’t be silenced or embarrassed by the charges of the Noah Feldmans of our times.

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein is the director of Interfaith Affairs of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, teaches Jewish Law at Loyola Law School, and is a senior editor of Cross-Currents.org, where this first appeared.

http://www.jewishpress.com/page.do/22684/Noah_Feldman_And_The_Fear_Of_Being_Different.html

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein Rouses Talmud Apologists

August 4, 2007

The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein (who is also a professor of Talmudic law at Loyola Law School) writes an editorial which on the surface appears to be a response to Noah Feldman’s piece published in the New York Times Magazine in which he candidly speaks of the Judaic tradition of fake benevolence and legalistic murder of non-“Jews” written about here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/07/new-york-times-reveals-talmudic.html

A few observations: Adlerstein admits not only that there are many passages in the canon of Judaism which are hostile to non-“Jews,” but he also admits that Judaics have covered up the offensive passages as a matter of policy. He clearly takes the position that the offensive passages should be dealt with now only because the debate is unavoidable due to the work of serious researchers of Judaism which is blacked out by the establishment press but which is being spread far and wide via the internet and self-published works.

Adlerstein seems to believe that the murderous racial supremacism of Judaism can be cleared by employing a two-wrongs-make-a-right fallacy of comical disproportion. He attempts to relativise the lying, perversion, murder, hate, racial conceit and double standards of Judaism with the polemics of St. John Chrysostom as if Chrysostom’s sermons are something that Christians have been fearfully hiding for 1600 years. What a laugh! The rabbinic texts have been hidden precisely because there’s something terrible within them. And there’s not the slightest hint from the rabbi that any apology is in order for these offensive passages, much less any revision of them, even as the rabbis take an active part in rewriting Christian exegesis, liturgy, doctrine, history, and teaching material in their image. Always, always the double standard.

Adlerstein sets up a double-minded quagmire revealing many previously hidden rabbinic teachings but then makes the astounding claim that halacha prevents “Jews” from practicing the very things that halacha mandates!

So it appears that a debate has been forced. I don’t know what to expect from such a debate given that we live in a time when Judaics “hold the swords” (to paraphrase Rabbi Jacob Neusner) and when what they’re defending is in essence a tradition of deceit. I’d expect the rabbis to fight every bit as dirty as they have in Talmud debates in past history, and as they do today, jailing their holocaust debate opponents. And I’d expect the Vatican to take the rabbis’ side completely. Perhaps this will, at the very least, expose the “Judeo-Christian tradition” farce and the “elder brothers in the faith” mockery for what they truly are.

Noah Feldman And The Fear Of Being Different

By: Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein
Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Ayatollahs in business suits is what Noah Feldman would have the world believe we all are. If the Orthodox were going to leave him out of his alma mater’s reunion picture just because he married out, then Noah Feldman was going to out the Orthodox.

His tell-all expose painted a picture, as he saw it, of the inherent primitiveness and backwardness of Orthodoxy. We may look modern, but scratch the surface, and we all harbor beliefs that are inconsistent with the more enlightened values of Harvard Square.

In his New York Times Magazine article, Feldman made a point of highlighting practices and attitudes toward non-Jews that he bargained would – or should – make us uncomfortable. We have always preferred to keep them under wraps, not always quite sure how to explain them to others, or even to ourselves, but quite sure that if others found out about them, they would hold them against us.

In making us face up to them Noah Feldman may have done us a favor. We have dealt with “problematic” texts in roughly the same way for the better part of a millennium. The old way will not work any longer, and the sooner we realize and react appropriately, the better.

The medieval church did a good job – often aided and abetted by Jewish apostates – in ferreting out what they saw as anti-gentile and anti-Christian nastiness in the Gemara. Modern anti-Semitic groups have revived the practice, and there are no shortage of websites that will gladly direct you to the exact places in the Talmud that prove we detest all non-Jews, and actively promote their demise.

(I am not saying, God forbid, that Noah Feldman is an anti-Semite.)

One of the prosecution witnesses in the Beilis blood libel was a Fr. Justinas Pranaitis, possibly hired because of his 1892 work “Talmud Unmasked,” still used by Jew-haters today. Most Jews are unaware of the literally thousands of hate sites on the Internet because we simply don’t run into the untermenschen who hang out on such sites. The New York Times Magazine, however, is harder to run from.

Our first line of defense was part of the shah-shtil mentality: we ran for cover. We tried to hide these passages, and if that failed, we reacted with surgically applied apologetics. Someone was always prepared to offer an explanation that seemed somewhat reasonable, and if presented by someone who looked sage and rabbinic enough, the non-Jews could be placated.

This approach will no longer work, because the nature of communications today insures that there are no longer any secrets, period. Almost anything you have ever said or written to anyone can come back to haunt you. An apologetic interpretation of a Talmudic passage – even if entirely correct and authoritative – is often not the only one on the Jewish street. For every politically correct explanation, there is a very non-PC one that can be dredged up in moments through the right search engine There will be many people, perhaps entire communities, who take a different approach. Their little secret will surface to haunt the rest of the Orthodox world.

There is no longer any option other than to own up to difficult sources and uncomfortable attitudes, and to deal openly with them. If we don’t, others will do the talking for us, which we can ill afford. We must learn where these passages are, acknowledge them, and learn to deal with them without hesitation. We will find more understanding and acceptance than we might think.

The first step is to weed out the misquotes and the misunderstood sources. Nine times out of ten, the proof-texts cited by critics are goofy errors. We must learn what the errors are, and be quick to demonstrate the fallacies.

The remaining ten percent can still do much damage. But they don’t have to – and won’t for most decent people – for several reasons.

First of all, many of them are a product of their times. Certain references to early Christians are a case in point. Can you discuss these passages with a believing Catholic without upping your life insurance? Of course you can. The person who taught me how was a Catholic priest and scholar with whom I once shared a platform at Loyola Law School.

A question arose about John Chrysostom, the fourth century Church Father who put the charge of deicide on the map. His vitriol against Jews was surpassed by none and was embraced for centuries thereafter, including by the Nazis.

Chrysostom remains a saint in the Church, and many Jews get unhinged by the mention of his name. The priest, however, was completely unfazed by the question, and calmly related that in the fourth century the Church was fighting for survival and felt very pressured by Judaism. Besides which, it was characteristic of the times for people to use the most extreme and abusive language in dealing with opponents. Contemporary Christians simply reject the entire package. Essentially he said, “That’s the way we once behaved, regrettably. We’ve moved on since then.”

What’s good for the goose is good for the gandz. Mutatis mutandis, some disparaging remarks in the Talmud against early Christians should be understandable to today’s Christians, if only as an exercise in parity. We ought not – and should not – expect them to be pleased by the language. But we have an argument in equity that they should be able to tolerate their existence, in the same way that similar (or much worse) passages regarding the Jews appear in their literature.

The passages in the Talmud that deal with Jesus himself (if they in fact do – the Rishonim, our great medieval commentators, were split on this), in far less than complimentary fashion, can be dealt with similarly.

There are yet other passages that are extremely dismissive of categories of non-Jews. Many of them, in fact, were aimed not at all non-Jews but at the idolatrous near-savages known to Chazal. To be sure, there are disputes going back to the Rishonim as to which passages refer to which groups. But many Jews are unaware as to how many mainstream decisors restricted the application of certain Gemaros to idolators, explicitly excluding the civilized folks among whom we live today.

It is also more than probable that part of the reason that this distinction is not embraced more widely is connected to the horrific experience Eastern European Jews in particular had with their non-Jewish neighbors for hundreds of years. It is frustrating to many of us that some people have not sufficiently appreciated the difference between the NKVD and the IRS. Even in this regard, my experience is that non-Jews of good will (and there are huge numbers of them in this great country) understand that habits born of eight hundred years of experience can take a while to extinguish, and are far less demanding and hostile than we might think.

There are other Talmudic sections that are not products of special conditions, and still spell out favorable treatment of Jews relative to non-Jews. These, too, are a cause for consternation for many Jews. They should not be. Almost every religious group we know of makes some claim to specialness, usually both theoretically and practically. These groups celebrate difference, and readily accept that other communities are entitled to extend privileges to the inner group as well. We Jews do not stand out in this regard so much as fit into the general trend.

Resorting to cheap innuendo, Feldman creates images and identities aimed at conveying to his reader the notion that Orthodox Jews do not, in fact, fit into the modern world. (This is not surprising. Feldman provided legal help pro bono to the city of Tenafly, New Jersey, when it sought to bar the construction of an eruv.)

Tefillin he pairs with the painful cilice of the priest-zealot of The Da Vinci Code; the silly little “fringed prayer shawl” that Jews wear under their shirts he pairs with the holy undergarment of Mormons, asking aloud why it is that Joe Lieberman was not perceived the way some see the Mormonism of Mitt Romney – as something “weird.”

Feldman, I believe, is blind here as well to the truth. Whether he wins the presidency or not, the vast majority of Americans will not reject Mitt Romney because they see Mormon belief and practice as beyond the pale.

I will put it simply: Why don’t I worry about the unusualness of Mormon belief? Mostly because I have never met a Mormon I didn’t like. (I’m sure that I could be introduced to a few, and there is also the irritating issue of posthumous baptism of Jews that many – especially Holocaust survivors – are upset about, particularly the glacial progress toward a definitive solution.)

My point is that for most Americans, actions are far more important than theology. They really don’t care what other people believe, as long as they act appropriately. If they are good, caring citizens, their beliefs – and claims of specialness in the eyes of the Lord – are just not so important.

Jews should listen up. Be a good neighbor, and you can sing a three-part harmonic ode to R. Yehuda Halevi’s special Jewish soul and most non-Jews will not hold it against you. Parts of certain chassidic communities are hardly the leaders of the pack in pushing for intergroup connection and acceptance, but tens of thousands of New Yorkers will remember them as the group that set up tables on 9/11 to provide drinks for the dazed and thirsty who fled across the bridge to Brooklyn.

There is one final argument. Part of what goes through our heads every time we encounter a Gemara that emphasizes some Jewish-gentile difference is that non-Jews will sense a slippery slope, at the base of which wait crusading Jews ready to behead all of them and impale their remains on sharpened Magen Davids.

We must confidently know ourselves – and convey to others – an overarching reality about traditional Jews: We are a legal community. Hostile attitudes can go only so far without hitting a firm halachic roadblock. No matter what animus some Jews might have for outsiders, they don’t murder, rape or maim. They cannot steal, lie or deceive without running afoul of clear-cut halachot.

Putting it all together, we have nothing to be ashamed of, nothing to hide. Putting aside those who have it in for us no matter what we do, the good folks of America will not find our life-style off-putting. I have been challenged several times by Jews who have rejected tradition. “Aren’t you ashamed to be part of system that says X, Y and Z about non-Jews? What if they find out?” They react with incredulity when I tell them that I discuss X, Y and Z openly with non-Jewish friends without embarrassment and without ill effect. But it is the truth.

Noah Feldman makes the mistake of so many others who believe that it is dangerous and unacceptable for Jews to act or believe differently from their fellow citizens. He is part of that large group of Jews who have felicitously been described as “proud to be ashamed Jews.”

It is a malady common to people who have little confidence in their own belief system. It has little to do with vast swaths of America, inhabited by people who are proud of their own beliefs and sympathetic to the strongly-held beliefs of others. If we remember that, we needn’t be silenced or embarrassed by the charges of the Noah Feldmans of our times.

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein is the director of Interfaith Affairs of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, teaches Jewish Law at Loyola Law School, and is a senior editor of Cross-Currents.org, where this first appeared.

http://www.jewishpress.com/page.do/22684/Noah_Feldman_And_The_Fear_Of_Being_Different.html

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein Rouses Talmud Apologists

August 4, 2007

The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein (who is also a professor of Talmudic law at Loyola Law School) writes an editorial which on the surface appears to be a response to Noah Feldman’s piece published in the New York Times Magazine in which he candidly speaks of the Judaic tradition of fake benevolence and legalistic murder of non-“Jews” written about here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/07/new-york-times-reveals-talmudic.html

A few observations: Adlerstein admits not only that there are many passages in the canon of Judaism which are hostile to non-“Jews,” but he also admits that Judaics have covered up the offensive passages as a matter of policy. He clearly takes the position that the offensive passages should be dealt with now only because the debate is unavoidable due to the work of serious researchers of Judaism which is blacked out by the establishment press but which is being spread far and wide via the internet and self-published works.

Adlerstein seems to believe that the murderous racial supremacism of Judaism can be cleared by employing a two-wrongs-make-a-right fallacy of comical disproportion. He attempts to relativise the lying, perversion, murder, hate, racial conceit and double standards of Judaism with the polemics of St. John Chrysostom as if Chrysostom’s sermons are something that Christians have been fearfully hiding for 1600 years. What a laugh! The rabbinic texts have been hidden precisely because there’s something terrible within them. And there’s not the slightest hint from the rabbi that any apology is in order for these offensive passages, much less any revision of them, even as the rabbis take an active part in rewriting Christian exegesis, liturgy, doctrine, history, and teaching material in their image. Always, always the double standard.

Adlerstein sets up a double-minded quagmire revealing many previously hidden rabbinic teachings but then making the astounding claim that halacha prevents “Jews” from practicing the very things that halacha mandates!

So it appears that a debate has been forced. I don’t know what to expect from such a debate given that we live in a time when Judaics “hold the swords” (to paraphrase Rabbi Jacob Neusner) and when what they’re defending is in essence a tradition of deceit. I’d expect the rabbis to fight every bit as dirty as they have in Talmud debates in past history, and as they do today, jailing their holocaust debate opponents. And I’d expect the Vatican to take the rabbis’ side completely. Perhaps this will, at the very least, expose the “Judeo-Christian tradition” farce and the “elder brothers in the faith” mockery for what they truly are.

Noah Feldman And The Fear Of Being Different

By: Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein
Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Ayatollahs in business suits is what Noah Feldman would have the world believe we all are. If the Orthodox were going to leave him out of his alma mater’s reunion picture just because he married out, then Noah Feldman was going to out the Orthodox.

His tell-all expose painted a picture, as he saw it, of the inherent primitiveness and backwardness of Orthodoxy. We may look modern, but scratch the surface, and we all harbor beliefs that are inconsistent with the more enlightened values of Harvard Square.

In his New York Times Magazine article, Feldman made a point of highlighting practices and attitudes toward non-Jews that he bargained would – or should – make us uncomfortable. We have always preferred to keep them under wraps, not always quite sure how to explain them to others, or even to ourselves, but quite sure that if others found out about them, they would hold them against us.

In making us face up to them Noah Feldman may have done us a favor. We have dealt with “problematic” texts in roughly the same way for the better part of a millennium. The old way will not work any longer, and the sooner we realize and react appropriately, the better.

The medieval church did a good job – often aided and abetted by Jewish apostates – in ferreting out what they saw as anti-gentile and anti-Christian nastiness in the Gemara. Modern anti-Semitic groups have revived the practice, and there are no shortage of websites that will gladly direct you to the exact places in the Talmud that prove we detest all non-Jews, and actively promote their demise.

(I am not saying, God forbid, that Noah Feldman is an anti-Semite.)

One of the prosecution witnesses in the Beilis blood libel was a Fr. Justinas Pranaitis, possibly hired because of his 1892 work “Talmud Unmasked,” still used by Jew-haters today. Most Jews are unaware of the literally thousands of hate sites on the Internet because we simply don’t run into the untermenschen who hang out on such sites. The New York Times Magazine, however, is harder to run from.

Our first line of defense was part of the shah-shtil mentality: we ran for cover. We tried to hide these passages, and if that failed, we reacted with surgically applied apologetics. Someone was always prepared to offer an explanation that seemed somewhat reasonable, and if presented by someone who looked sage and rabbinic enough, the non-Jews could be placated.

This approach will no longer work, because the nature of communications today insures that there are no longer any secrets, period. Almost anything you have ever said or written to anyone can come back to haunt you. An apologetic interpretation of a Talmudic passage – even if entirely correct and authoritative – is often not the only one on the Jewish street. For every politically correct explanation, there is a very non-PC one that can be dredged up in moments through the right search engine There will be many people, perhaps entire communities, who take a different approach. Their little secret will surface to haunt the rest of the Orthodox world.

There is no longer any option other than to own up to difficult sources and uncomfortable attitudes, and to deal openly with them. If we don’t, others will do the talking for us, which we can ill afford. We must learn where these passages are, acknowledge them, and learn to deal with them without hesitation. We will find more understanding and acceptance than we might think.

The first step is to weed out the misquotes and the misunderstood sources. Nine times out of ten, the proof-texts cited by critics are goofy errors. We must learn what the errors are, and be quick to demonstrate the fallacies.

The remaining ten percent can still do much damage. But they don’t have to – and won’t for most decent people – for several reasons.

First of all, many of them are a product of their times. Certain references to early Christians are a case in point. Can you discuss these passages with a believing Catholic without upping your life insurance? Of course you can. The person who taught me how was a Catholic priest and scholar with whom I once shared a platform at Loyola Law School.

A question arose about John Chrysostom, the fourth century Church Father who put the charge of deicide on the map. His vitriol against Jews was surpassed by none and was embraced for centuries thereafter, including by the Nazis.

Chrysostom remains a saint in the Church, and many Jews get unhinged by the mention of his name. The priest, however, was completely unfazed by the question, and calmly related that in the fourth century the Church was fighting for survival and felt very pressured by Judaism. Besides which, it was characteristic of the times for people to use the most extreme and abusive language in dealing with opponents. Contemporary Christians simply reject the entire package. Essentially he said, “That’s the way we once behaved, regrettably. We’ve moved on since then.”

What’s good for the goose is good for the gandz. Mutatis mutandis, some disparaging remarks in the Talmud against early Christians should be understandable to today’s Christians, if only as an exercise in parity. We ought not – and should not – expect them to be pleased by the language. But we have an argument in equity that they should be able to tolerate their existence, in the same way that similar (or much worse) passages regarding the Jews appear in their literature.

The passages in the Talmud that deal with Jesus himself (if they in fact do – the Rishonim, our great medieval commentators, were split on this), in far less than complimentary fashion, can be dealt with similarly.

There are yet other passages that are extremely dismissive of categories of non-Jews. Many of them, in fact, were aimed not at all non-Jews but at the idolatrous near-savages known to Chazal. To be sure, there are disputes going back to the Rishonim as to which passages refer to which groups. But many Jews are unaware as to how many mainstream decisors restricted the application of certain Gemaros to idolators, explicitly excluding the civilized folks among whom we live today.

It is also more than probable that part of the reason that this distinction is not embraced more widely is connected to the horrific experience Eastern European Jews in particular had with their non-Jewish neighbors for hundreds of years. It is frustrating to many of us that some people have not sufficiently appreciated the difference between the NKVD and the IRS. Even in this regard, my experience is that non-Jews of good will (and there are huge numbers of them in this great country) understand that habits born of eight hundred years of experience can take a while to extinguish, and are far less demanding and hostile than we might think.

There are other Talmudic sections that are not products of special conditions, and still spell out favorable treatment of Jews relative to non-Jews. These, too, are a cause for consternation for many Jews. They should not be. Almost every religious group we know of makes some claim to specialness, usually both theoretically and practically. These groups celebrate difference, and readily accept that other communities are entitled to extend privileges to the inner group as well. We Jews do not stand out in this regard so much as fit into the general trend.

Resorting to cheap innuendo, Feldman creates images and identities aimed at conveying to his reader the notion that Orthodox Jews do not, in fact, fit into the modern world. (This is not surprising. Feldman provided legal help pro bono to the city of Tenafly, New Jersey, when it sought to bar the construction of an eruv.)

Tefillin he pairs with the painful cilice of the priest-zealot of The Da Vinci Code; the silly little “fringed prayer shawl” that Jews wear under their shirts he pairs with the holy undergarment of Mormons, asking aloud why it is that Joe Lieberman was not perceived the way some see the Mormonism of Mitt Romney – as something “weird.”

Feldman, I believe, is blind here as well to the truth. Whether he wins the presidency or not, the vast majority of Americans will not reject Mitt Romney because they see Mormon belief and practice as beyond the pale.

I will put it simply: Why don’t I worry about the unusualness of Mormon belief? Mostly because I have never met a Mormon I didn’t like. (I’m sure that I could be introduced to a few, and there is also the irritating issue of posthumous baptism of Jews that many – especially Holocaust survivors – are upset about, particularly the glacial progress toward a definitive solution.)

My point is that for most Americans, actions are far more important than theology. They really don’t care what other people believe, as long as they act appropriately. If they are good, caring citizens, their beliefs – and claims of specialness in the eyes of the Lord – are just not so important.

Jews should listen up. Be a good neighbor, and you can sing a three-part harmonic ode to R. Yehuda Halevi’s special Jewish soul and most non-Jews will not hold it against you. Parts of certain chassidic communities are hardly the leaders of the pack in pushing for intergroup connection and acceptance, but tens of thousands of New Yorkers will remember them as the group that set up tables on 9/11 to provide drinks for the dazed and thirsty who fled across the bridge to Brooklyn.

There is one final argument. Part of what goes through our heads every time we encounter a Gemara that emphasizes some Jewish-gentile difference is that non-Jews will sense a slippery slope, at the base of which wait crusading Jews ready to behead all of them and impale their remains on sharpened Magen Davids.

We must confidently know ourselves – and convey to others – an overarching reality about traditional Jews: We are a legal community. Hostile attitudes can go only so far without hitting a firm halachic roadblock. No matter what animus some Jews might have for outsiders, they don’t murder, rape or maim. They cannot steal, lie or deceive without running afoul of clear-cut halachot.

Putting it all together, we have nothing to be ashamed of, nothing to hide. Putting aside those who have it in for us no matter what we do, the good folks of America will not find our life-style off-putting. I have been challenged several times by Jews who have rejected tradition. “Aren’t you ashamed to be part of system that says X, Y and Z about non-Jews? What if they find out?” They react with incredulity when I tell them that I discuss X, Y and Z openly with non-Jewish friends without embarrassment and without ill effect. But it is the truth.

Noah Feldman makes the mistake of so many others who believe that it is dangerous and unacceptable for Jews to act or believe differently from their fellow citizens. He is part of that large group of Jews who have felicitously been described as “proud to be ashamed Jews.”

It is a malady common to people who have little confidence in their own belief system. It has little to do with vast swaths of America, inhabited by people who are proud of their own beliefs and sympathetic to the strongly-held beliefs of others. If we remember that, we needn’t be silenced or embarrassed by the charges of the Noah Feldmans of our times.

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein is the director of Interfaith Affairs of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, teaches Jewish Law at Loyola Law School, and is a senior editor of Cross-Currents.org, where this first appeared.

http://www.jewishpress.com/page.do/22684/Noah_Feldman_And_The_Fear_Of_Being_Different.html

100% Pure Judaic Racial Supremacism

March 20, 2007

IDF thug: “I don’t know what we’re doing here (in Palestinian territory). Purification, maybe. It’s dirty here. I don’t know why a good Hebrew boy should be here so far from his home.”

100% Pure Judaic Racial Supremacism

March 20, 2007

IDF thug: “I don’t know what we’re doing here (in Palestinian territory). Purification, maybe. It’s dirty here. I don’t know why a good Hebrew boy should be here so far from his home.”

100% Pure Judaic Racial Supremacism

March 20, 2007

IDF thug: “I don’t know what we’re doing here (in Palestinian territory). Purification, maybe. It’s dirty here. I don’t know why a good Hebrew boy should be here so far from his home.”

Olmert Admits 2006 Israeli Destruction of Lebanon Infrastructure was Decided Upon Long in Advance

March 10, 2007

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told the Winograd Commission that his decision to respond to the abduction of soldiers with a broad military operation was made as early as March 2006, four months before last summer’s Lebanon war broke out …

… as early as the first day of the war, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke with Olmert and asked that Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora not be undermined. Israel understood this to mean that Lebanese infrastructure should not be destroyed, even though the IDF had originally planned otherwise.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/834549.html

Olmert Admits 2006 Israeli Destruction of Lebanon Infrastructure was Decided Upon Long in Advance

March 10, 2007

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told the Winograd Commission that his decision to respond to the abduction of soldiers with a broad military operation was made as early as March 2006, four months before last summer’s Lebanon war broke out …

… as early as the first day of the war, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke with Olmert and asked that Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora not be undermined. Israel understood this to mean that Lebanese infrastructure should not be destroyed, even though the IDF had originally planned otherwise.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/834549.html

The Sound of Money Flowing Out Of Your Pockets Towards "Israel"

February 28, 2007

EDITOR’S NOTE: Those who followed the Israeli massacre on Lebanon this past summer may recall Miri Eisin as the the very sincere young woman who relayed how regretful the Israelis were that women and children were “accidentally” killed during the Israeli bombing of homes in the civilian populated village of Qana. Mrs. Eisin has now returned to announce that “Israel” is seeking for the US to pick up the tab for their Kabbalistic 33 day-long slaughter of innocent civilians in Lebanon.

“Israel” is also looking for more cash to cover the cost of removing “Jewish settlers” from the West Bank land they illegally occupied. I was under the impression that we already paid for that. Apparently it wasn’t enough. The “settlers” must need new swimming pools, automatic weapons or something else much more important than relief for Hurricane Katrina victims, body armor for US troops in Iraq, or food and clothing for the growing poverty class in the U.S.

Israel negotiates new US military aid deal

JERUSALEM (AFP) – An Israeli delegation has left for the United States to negotiate a new aid deal from the Jewish state’s main ally and donor, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s spokeswoman said Monday.

“A delegation headed by Bank of Israel chief Stanley Fischer left Tel Aviv overnight for Washington to negotiate a new deal to fix the amount of annual military aid from the United States for Israel for the next decade,” Miri Eisin told AFP.

Israeli officials are also hoping for extra aid to compensate for the cost of last summer’s 34-day Lebanon war and the withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in August-September 2005, she said.

Israel withdrew troops and settlers from Gaza after a 38-year occupation, but it continues to be an occupying power under international law as it controls borders and de facto daily life in the coastal strip.

The existing military aid accord between Israel and the United States took effect in 1998 and expires this year.

“Military aid granted to Israel by the United States is currently 2.4 billion dollars per year, and is devoted entirely to purchases of equipment and armaments and to research projects in the US,” Eisin said.

The Israeli delegation also includes officials from the finance and foreign affairs ministries and the army, she said.

http://uk.news.yahoo.com/26022007/323/israel-negotiates-new-military-aid-deal.html