On Thursday evening at the annual celebration at the Tomb of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai in Meron Galilee, forty five people were trampled upon and hundreds were injured at what was called by the Paramedics a stampede. Last year this celebration was only watched on Live Video. Since Israel has now reduced Corona infection to a minimum the Health Department gave permission to have this gathering without any limitations.
Jews throughout the world will be celebrating the holiday of L”Ag B”Omer this Friday in Israel and throughout the world. The holiday of L”Ag B’Omer falls in between the two Jewish festivals Passover and Shevuot (weeks). Between Passover and Shavuos are 49 days. During this period is counted 49 days which in the times of the Holy Temple was brought an offering of the new wheats called Omer.
Netanyahu was given 28 days to attempt to make a government with him as Prime Minister. The time is running out. The reason for the difficulties is that many of the members of the Knesset who were once loyal to Likud and Netanyahu have dropped out of the right-wing government with Netanyahu as Prime Minister.
Amidst the dilemma of this year Corona Pandemic the minds of most people in the world is on health. Many people have died from Corona virus. Many people have recovered from the illness. Corona virus has been difficult for humanity even though almost 98% of people contacting the virus live through it. In a subtle way Corona Covid -19 has been able to cripple the world.
Israel elections ended without the right side led by Likud or the left side opposing Netanyahu with a majority. Both sides are working to make a government. President Rivlin gave Netanyahu the mandate and 28 days to make a majority mandate coalition. Two of the candidates who are in the middle of the controversy between sides are Naftali Bennet of Yamina party who has behind him seven mandates and the Arab Ram party leader.
The Passover holidays have closed in Israel but Christians are celebrating Easter Sunday. Though Israel has been successful through its vaccination campaign to open restaurants, hotels, and religious sites air travel is still restricted keeping away foreign pilgrims who usually throng to Israel during the holy week.
The Jewish people will be finishing their Passover seasonal celebrations this weekend. Easter Sunday begins when Passover ends. There is no doubt that Judaism and Christianity have the same roots. Both Judaism and Christianity give honor to the Five Books of Moses. The five books of Moses begin with the story of creation. God created the world in six days and on the seventh day he rested called the Sabbath. Adam the first man was the culmination of the six days of creations. The Sabbath the seventh day represents complete and total peace between God, man and his creation. The eternal Sabbath is a goal for all of mankind.
Israel went to the polls Tuesday and still has not established a majority of 61 mandates. Likud and his right-side supporting parties reached a total of 59 mandates. The opposition parties to Netanyahu without the Arab parties have 50 mandates. The two Arab parties have 11 votes divided into two coalitions 6 Arab Unity party and 5 Arab democratic party. If the Arab party with five mandates will join in with Netanyahu, Likud will reach a majority of 64 mandates to become again Prime Minister. If the two Arab parties will join opposition to Netanyahu the Left will have 61 mandates. The Arab parties will decide if Israel will have a new government.
The holiday of Passover is celebrated each year in the beginning of the spring season. The story of Exodus of the Jewish people from slavery to King Pharoah in Egypt is written in the second book of the five books of Moses, called the Old Testament. The bible begins with the story of the creation of the world by an Omnipotent God in six days and in the seventh day God rested from his work.
Elections are coming next week. Polls show that there is a possibility that Netanyahu may gather enough mandates to make a government all on the right side. This will include Likud, Yamina headed by Naftali Bennet, Shas religious Sephardic Jewish party, United Torah Judaism party, and the religious Zionist party. Gidyon Saar who broke off from Likud to make the New Hope Party could gather 10 mandates.
Israel celebrates that it has vaccinated with at least one shot of Pfizer vaccine 5 million Israelis which is half of the population. After a lockdown for several weeks, the economy has been opened. For the first time in many months people are sitting and eating in restaurants, going to swimming pools, shopping in malls and children have returned to school.
Israel elections arriving in three weeks. Benjamin Netanyahu is counting on his success in vaccinating the nation which has brought down the number of hospitalizations below one thousand to 700 to bring to him additional mandates for him to continue to be Prime Minister. His opponents are still fighting against the popularity of Netanyahu from both sides the left and right. The only solid supporters of Netanyahu are his Likud friends and the religious parties. The other right parties Yamina led by Naftali Bennet and Gidyon Saar of New Hope party want to be Prime Minister. There is a much greater majority of mandates of right wing parties than left wing parties including the Arabs. For a right-wing party to join with the left side including the Arabs is doubtful.
After more than 15 years of petitioning and just three weeks ahead of elections, the High Court of Israel ruled that those that had converted to Judaism through reformed and conservative conversions in Israel will be recognized as Jewish by the State. The court also ruled that converts will be allowed to become full Israeli citizens under the law of return.
The Israeli–Palestinian conflict is the ongoing struggle between Israelis and Palestinians that began in the mid-20th century amidst the greater Arab–Israeli conflict. Various attempts have been made to resolve the conflict as part of the Israeli–Palestinian peace process. Most Recently by Donald J Trump resulting in the historic .
The change of leadership in the US has caused a dramatic change in the US – Israeli relationship dynamics. The dynamics between US president Donald Trump, and the Israeli government led by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Joe Biden couldn’t be more opposite.
Israel a small nation of no more than 10 million people in a world of much larger nations considers diplomacy of utmost importance to its existence. It is faced with a crisis concerning relations with its neighboring states Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria about the future of a Palestinian state. It has also danger from Iran who is interested in being the major power in the Middle East when it will complete its project to make nuclear weapons. The world is seeking a peaceful solution to the Middle East crisis, stabilization of the region. America has interest in maintaining peaceful relations with Israel and in stabilization of the region.
Judaism is the biblical religion of the Jewish people which is based on the teachings of the Bible the Old Testament which were given by God to Moses at Mount Sinai. In Jewish tradition there are three major holidays Passover, Sukkot and Shevuot. Passover commemorates the Exodus of the Jewish people from slavery to King Pharoah in Egypt. Sukkot commemorates the period of forty years after Passover in which the Jews lived in the Wilderness of Sinai on the way to the land of Israel. Shavuot which means weeks commemorates the period of time of seven weeks between Passover and the giving of the Ten Commandments at Mount Sinai.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned about the unfolding US–Iranian nuclear-talk developments. According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister, Israel remains committed to deterring Iran from having nuclear weapons. This is despite talks with the US.
Israel is in the middle of an outbreak of Corona virus which has grown rapidly in the country due to the British, South African, and Brazilian mutations. Despite a lockdown for four weeks, the number of daily infections has almost seen almost no change. Unlike previous lockdowns, the third lockdown has almost been unsuccessful to reduce the percentages of infection. Even after administrating over 3 million vaccinations primarily to those in immediate danger from Corona, the mortality rate continues to be the highest in Israel Corona history. Hospitalizations are continuing almost without reduction, severe cases and those on ventilators.
Professor Rabbi Doctor Abraham Twerski died this week from Corona at the age of 90 years. Rabbi Twerski was an unusual person because even though he grew up in an ultra-orthodox Chassidic family who generally oppose their children from entering secular professions. His father was from the great Chassidic dynasty of Chernobyl.
Israel’s attention is focused on the March elections. Many consider the leadership of Prime Minister Netanyahu insufficient to meet the needs of the public amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic. The Israeli public is frustrated by the lockdown that is planned to be extended for another week because of the still-soaring infection rate.
Pope Francis on Wednesday marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp by urging people to keep a close watch on distorted ideologies. He said, “To remember is an expression of humanity. To remember is a sign of civility. To remember is a condition for better future for peace and fraternity.“
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is looking to avoid a clash with US President Joe Biden on matters related to the Iranian deal. This is according to Israeli government officials who spoke with Axios. The prime minister is apparently looking to tone down abrasive sentiments that may cause problems when dealing with the new administration.
This week, on Wednesday, Holocaust Remembrance Day was observed around the world. Of course, the commemoration could not be like every year, but the message of remembrance of the Holocaust is necessary to be repeated every year. There is always the fear of genocide, which, after the Holocaust, can never be accepted.
As lockdowns spread out throughout the world they bring with them sometimes violent response. Such is the case in many places in the world where there are demonstrations against the leadership of their nation.
In Israel this week in the city of Bnei Brak the police cracked down on Ultra-Orthodox religious offenders of Corona lockdown restriction which brought violent response. The Ministry of Health in Israel has given orders that all schools should be closed. Public Gatherings inside allow only five people and outside 10 people. The religious communities throughout Israel consider sacred their organized communal prayers and education for the youth. In the last lockdown before the winter season it was easier to organize learning and prayer outside in the open air where there is less danger of spreading infection.
The Jewish world is filled with diversity. In Israel the nation is divided into many coalitions each coalition represents another approach toward Jewish life. Likud the largest party in Israel in which Netanyahu is the leader represents a portion of the Israeli Jews estimated to be 30 mandates out of 120 mandates of the entire Knesset. This is only one quarter of the Jewish nation. Likud is called center right party. The right side besides Likud consists of religious Zionists and Ultra- Orthodox Zionists. Likud is not a religious party but accepting the authenticity and importance of Judaism.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has implored the Joe Biden administration to get back to the Iran nuclear deal that was signed by the Obama administration in 2015. Under the agreement, Iran would adhere to uranium enrichment restrictions in exchange for a sanctions reprieve.
The lockdown in Israel against the Coronavirus has been extended for another two weeks. The lockdown has not been successful in getting down the number of daily infections. Instead, Israel has seen a change in the number of younger people that have become hospitalized from the Coronavirus in the last two weeks.
Iran has asked the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to stop publishing discordant statements related to its nuclear program. The asseveration comes just a day after the IAEA issued a disclosure indicating that Iran was working to start processing uranium metal. The following is an excerpt from the statement made by Iran’s nuclear department:
Two million Israelis have already received first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, over 20% of the Israel population. An additional 110,000 have already received the second dose. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that vaccination campaign success will allow Israel to ease restrictions while Europe plans lockdowns well into March and April.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has claimed that Iran is assisting Al Qaeda operatives in the region by providing them with legal documentation and logistical support. According to the official, Iran and AL Qaeda got into an agreement soon after the signing of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. That said, no official intelligence records have been cited regarding this.
California especially Los Angeles is being hit hard by Corona Pandemic. A Chassidic Rabbi in the Heart of Los Angeles the Jewish religious neighborhood of LaBrea in a short speech spoke about Corona which infected many people from his congregation including himself. On Friday before the Sabbath he received a telephone call that one or more of his congregants had tested positive for Corona. The Rabbi was forced to close his synagogue on that Sabbath. He himself tested for Corona and received a positive response.
American adversaries and allies shook their head in dismay at the assault on the heart of US democracy. Many foreign leaders noted the importance of American’s role as a nation of self-rule by a free population urging a rapid return to stability. Several place the blame on President Trump. Others placed the blame on the news media, fake news during the Trump Administration before the Corona Pandemic which created doubts in the minds of Americans that justice was being upheld.
The Jerusalem District Court has ordered Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to submit papers indicating that he formerly made a written directive authorizing corruption investigations into Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The decree was made by the court after Netanyahu’s lawyers argued that no such injunction has ever been made.
President Trump began his term as President with the highest Messianic ideals. He hoped that the strength of America could unite whole with freedom and democracy. He fought against liberal socialism which polluted the essence of freedom and democracy to permit abortions without limit, sex relationships not procreative, and anarchy in the name of freedom. With the strength of a powerful America he was able to bring together opposite sides of national religions Islam and Judaism.
Israel Aerospace Industries successfully tested its medium range surface to air missile in India. It is able to shoot down enemy aircraft at a range of 50-70 kilometers. It is meant to help protect India from enemy aircraft. It is used by the Israeli navy, as well as the Indian navy and ground forces.
The Iran addressed the Coronavirus pandemic this weekend during the National Committee meeting. The President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Hassan Rouhani said: “Coronavirus infection is not a common disease, but a historic test for the peoples and leaders of the world.”
Jonathan Pollard arrived in Israel after having been released from parole restrictions in the United States. Pollard was convicted of spying for Israel when he was working as an intelligence analyst in 1984. He was sentenced to life imprisonment. Israel considered the sentence severe because his espionage was for them, an ally of the United States.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has invited Morocco’s King Mohammed VI to Israel following a meeting with the king in Rabat. The two leaders met to discuss closer ties between their two nations. The US-Israeli delegation arrived in Morocco early last week to finalize talks related to a normalization treaty.
Israel is uncomfortable with Turkey’s motive for an alliance. This was revealed by a high-ranking Israeli diplomat who spoke to the Jerusalem Post this week. According to the official, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan wants closer economic ties between his country and Israel while maintaining a host of connections that are problematic for Israel and its allies.
In Israel has begun the vaccination campaign. Today I received vaccination with Pfizer vaccine in the city of Sfat. The campaign began with vaccinations of Health Workers. The second phase now is vaccination of senior citizens. Being at the age of 71 I was immediately able to receive an appointment for vaccination.
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Jerusalem to protest against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The action partially escalated into clashes, several people were detained. On Saturday evening, December 26, another demonstration was held in Israel against the policies of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
On December 24th, Iranian officials made a statement regarding the deployment of additional air defense systems. The Russian-made systems will be deployed under emergency measures. They will be strategically positioned near Iranian nuclear facilities to guard against possible US or Israeli strikes against them.
Christians are struggling to celebrate Christmas in Israel, like the rest of the world, because of the Coronavirus Pandemic. The Corona Pandemic has dampened Christmas Joy in Bethlehem and elsewhere. The officials in Bethlehem tried to make the most out of the situation. They remarked, Christmas is a holiday that renews hope in the souls.
The Israeli Cabinet on Wednesday approved a new lockdown, the third since the beginning of the pandemic, which will come into force next Sunday, as reported by a section of the country’s local media. The new general shutdown would last for at least two weeks and seeks to stop the spread of the virus.
A final attempt in the Israeli Knesset to stop new elections failed Monday night. The bill to avoid dissolution failed to pass. After three elections, the Israeli coalition government reached a compromise between the two major parties, Likud and Blue and White, because of the coronavirus pandemic.