Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Political Rabbis

I just read an interesting article. A group of Rabbis got together and said the kabbalistic prayer asking for the angel of death to take sharon away. Firstly, how come I never learned that one?? What was the point of 20 years in yeshiva if they dont teach you the important stuff. I wish knew that one when the rabbi took my radio, when the rabbi took my books, when the rabbi took my CDs, when the rabbi forced me to sit in his office for hours so he could talk to me, when the rabbi laughed and told me i was suspended, when....ok, so I'm a bit bitter. Point being, I never heard of this prayer. I wonder if Madonna learned it yet. That just wouldnt be fair, if she learned that kind of stuff before me. Secondly, how did they determine he deserved death? Do they say that prayer on all people who break Shabbat, are gay, practice witchcraft, etc?
Heres another thing that bothers me. I remember learning in History Class about King Henry VIII, who wanted to divorce his wife, but the pope wouldnt let. So he made a new pope who allowed him to get divorced. I feel Rabbis in government do the same thing. Instead of asking the Rabbi if something is allowed, they tell him what they are doing, and tell him to make it permissible. When Rabbis disagree with government policy, they threaten to close down their schools. If a Rabbi feels that disengagement is forbidden halachically, he has an obligation to announce that people cant take part. People dont have to listen, but he cant sit by and allow people to break halacha.

Monday, July 25, 2005

One Shoe Two Shoe...

I was told I waste too much time. I decided to do something about it, so today I went to the Shuk and people watched. The thing I noticed today was shoes. No one has the same shoes. It was all about sandals today. Mostly thong sandals. But no two people had the same kind. Thicker straps, colors, size of the sole, its amazing how many kinds of shoes there are. Imagine if shoes were like refrigarators. you'd have your standard white, a few silver, some brown, but thats really it. There was only two people with the new plastic shoes with holes in them, one guy and one girl. They werent together. No couple had the same shoes. I was looking for it. There was only one girl with heels, sandals with a very low heel. Also, there were a few people with the other new style, a thong like shoe with a circle by the toe. Kind of hard for me to describe. A lot of the old men had black sandal/shoes, each with holes in different places, most with black socks on also. The style that seemed uncomfortable to me was the sandals that tie on the ankle. Why do sandals need to tie on the ankle? Also, when people move fast wearing sandals with no back, and the shoe keeps smacking the bottom of the foot. Just doesnt look comfortable. All in all, it was very educational. How am I going to be productive tomorrow?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Yom Pekudah-Being There

Once I got in to the village, I started walking around. It was like a carnival, people everywhere, selling things, people laying on the grass, playing sports, etc. Ta Katom had set up activities for children in one area, there were speeches throughout the day, shiurim, and everyone was just hanging out, waiting for it to cool off before the march. I met up with my old Yeshiva, Maale Adumim, a lot of my army buddies were there, we had shiurim from one of the Rabbaim. I heard that some of the guys from my Yeshiva were part of the soldiers on the outside keepin us in, but they had asked to guard the gear in the back so they wouldnt be a part of it all. At 430 we had a big meeting, with speeches and singing, and it just got boring so I went to the entrance to see what was going on. The entrance was crowded, cops were massed on one side, orangies on the other. I started walking around the fence, everywhere kids were cutting it, and cops were lining up by the holes, arm in arm, to make sure no one got out. As I was walking, one of the soldiers yelled my name. I look up, and its my friends from the army! My hesder group was all inside, and the rest of the unit was outside. Very creepy. My commander was there, now promoted to an officer. I had a nice long talk with them, none of them wanted to be there, they wanted to do something real, they wouldnt refuse orders, but they definitely wouldnt put any effort into fulfilling them. As the night went on, more people kept coming in, the cops kept trying to stoo them from coming in, is from leaving, and it was all just balagan. But it was very clear we werent going to continue the march. At around 8, I left the village, they were letting people out one by one, occasionally, and went to were my friends were stationed. At 9, nothing had changed, so I went home.

Yom Pekudah-Getting There

Yesterday, Tuesday, Day Two of the 3 day protest march to Gaza, I left Jerusalem to join. I was at the city exit at 8AM, trying to hitch south. at 845 someone stopped. He said the roads were all blocked, but he was going to see how close he could get. So I jumped in. There were two other hitchhikers with me. One was an ex-Breslover chassid. The radio in the car was broken, and this guy was our alternative. The entire drive he explained to us how we have to take over Bet Lechem by force, only them will the Mashiach come. He had maps printed up, lots of data about the area, he seemed very ready. He wanted to find a ride to scout out Bet Lechem, but decided to join us going to the march. The other hitchhiker was a settler chassid, with a big knit kippa and very long peyot. He was holding a song book dedicated to the memories of R' Kahane, Sr and Jr, Baruch Goldstein, and a few other people. I believe he would be labeled as "hilltop youth" . As I sat with these people, I wondered how people look at me.
We drove for about an hour and a half, until we were turning towards Netivot, where the march had started the day before. There was a line of about 15-20 trucks stopped, with a police car turned sideways blocking the road. We drove on the shoulder, and shot past the cop car. We were very excited no one had stopped us yet, but then we saw another road block, this one with 4 cop cars, cops swarming all over, and the road ahead entirely blocked. We were forced to turn left instead of going straight. At this point, the driver said he didnt know what he was going to dom so we got out and started walking. We were about a 2 hour hike away from the protest. As we started walking, we saw cars were snaeking thru on a dirt road on the side of the highway. So we went there and got a ride from someone who was looking for her daughter. They had been together, and the mother had gone to get the car. She saved us about 45 minutes of walking till she foind her daughter. Then we kept walking. After about 10 minutes, we made it to the next intersection. This one was also heavily manned, blocking whoever managed to get past the first block. Also, 2R was waiting there, on her way home from the protest. There was a change of the guard, as many who had come the day before left, and many others were coming. I walked from that intersection for almost a half hour til I got to the protest. Along the way I saw rows and rows of busses, all used to bring army and cops in. They were all sitting under big tents, sorrounding the village. The village is sorrounded by a barbed wire fence, and they were making sure no one tried to cut the fence and sneak out the sides. At this point, when I came, they were allowing people in, so I walked in and joined my fellow protestors.

Yom Pekudah-Prelude

I made it into Kfar Mamon today, where the 3 day march was set up. I just made it home. I have a lot to write, but now is not the time.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Wheres the Logic?

Since early this morning, the news hasnt changed. We've amassed troops right outside Gaza, and if Abbas doesnt stop the rockets, then we're going to go in and stop it. I imagine that last night, when they announced the plan, it would have been a good idea. But no, we decided to wait to see if Abbas can stop it. Why dont we just say, we wanted to go in and stop the rockets, but we thought it would be more fun if we gave the terrorists time to booby trap everything before we come?? Why do we give them as much time as needed to prepare for us?
In other news, Mendy, youre very missed right now. MyShan is out studying, and I'm sitting here alone, eating a pizza. Why is it I only think of you when I eat pizza?? This ones from the Pizzeria on Herzl. The best I've found so far in the neighborhood. The competition is Pizza Larry, Oh-ma-gash (as bad as it sounds), and pizza realto in Bayit Vegan. This comes down to a Noach thing. Is the pizza only good because the competition is lousy? Or,, would it be good even if it was up against, Big Apple, Pizza Hut, and that place in Nahariya tha everyone loves....

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Anti Semitism

I was looking at some comments posted on an article on Yahoo about disengagement and I came across something I havent seen in awhile. Anti-Semtism. With all kinds of comments about killing Jews, dirty kikes, etc. In honor of this occasion, my reconnection to Anti-Semitism, I surfed through Google with different keywords to see what kinds of Anti-Semitism I could find.
"Jew Pizza"
What is the difference between a Jew and a pizza?A pizza doesn't scream when you put it in the oven.
A lactose-intolerant man was admitted to St. Jude's Emergency Room Thursday night after experiencing a severe reaction to a triple cheese pizza, but quickly blamed the Jewish-owned proprietor of Murray's Pizza for his stomach pain.

"Jew Lion"
These room temperature IQ droolers are the Jewish population of Israel. These are the rednecks we are supposed to take seriously. They walked into the lion cage and demand to be protected from the lion. They claim they are the victim of the lion.

"Jew Money" (Ok, this one was too easy)
The list of Jewish knights which follows gives no real idea of the Jewish contamination of the once-prized honor of knighthood.

this got boring. Surprisingly, "rule the world", "take over the world", and "world domination" didnt get any hits about Jews, at least not in the first two pages. Have we lost some of our control?
"jew bastard" was almost exclusively about Hillary Clinton, who apparently called one of her aides that.

Interestingly, heres a piece of the wikipedia definiton of anti-semitism
"the first known laws of any church council against Jews appeared. Christian women were forbidden to marry Jews unless the Jew first converted to Christianity. Jews were forbidden to extend hospitality to Christians. Jews could not keep Christian concubines and were forbidden to bless the fields of Christians"

Thats it for now

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Pissed off ramblings

Yet another bombing. All I can focus on is this stupid comment, reported in Haaretz

"We reiterate our commitment to calm, but we have to retaliate for Israeli violations," suicide bomber Ahmed Abu Khalil, 18, said in a farewell video.

Maybe its just me, but this sounds like. "we dont want you to attack us, but we can attack you for whatever reason we want".
Explain to me again, why are we giving them our country? Of course, the PA condemned the bombing. They wouldnt go as far as to actually try to stop it, but they can definitely sit on their asses and shake their heads.
What bugs me the most, I really believe the majority of Palestinians just want to live in peace. They want jobs and security, and a good place to raise their kids. I saw these people when I was in the army. You see the frustration on their faces as they wait in line to get their papers checked. But how is it possible to allow these people a normal life, if every time we allow them a little more freedom, someone comes and bombs us?? I've also see terror attacks, I saw the leg of a man who walked into the center of Jerusalem and blew himself up. His leg was laying in the middle of town, surrounded by people yelling with blood all over them. Every time I see an Arab, I think of that leg. Is he one of the peaceful kind, or a would-be bomber? Is it worth finding it? Or is it better to lock them all up, hurt the good to protect us from the bad?
Enough rambling.
I'd lovingly give them Gaza if we would have any proof whatsoever that it would help us in any way, instead of being told it will bring more terror, but its still good for us. This is what happens when we just give them control of Kalkilya. What about when we give them full control of entire areas?

Finally, Nothing to Do with Politics!!

Yesterday I wasn't sure if I had a winner. I called someone, and they told me he died on Sunday. Being as it was Monday, I wasnt sure if they meant yesterday, or Sunday the week before. It sounded strange for someone to say Sunday instead of yesterday, but out of respect for the dead, I refrained from asking. It made a big difference in the game though. Before then, the closest someone died to when I called was 4 days. (died on Sunday, called on Wednesday). So I wasnt sure if yesterdays call topped that or not. But now it doesnt matter. Today, i called a lady, lets call her Mary. A young girl, her granddaughter answered. She passed the phone to her mama, who told me Mary had died yesterday morning. This was only 1PM the next day, so this is a definite winner!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Freaked Out

Weirdest thing just happened. Shans phone rang, an anonymous caller, and I answered. A slightly Russian accented guy asked if this was Ariellas phone. I said no, its Shany. He said hes looking for Ariella. I told him he had the worng number. Then he said, "I'm calling from the police interrogation office, we are looking for Ariella Zacks." So I told him he reached Shany Zacks, not Ariella, and I hung up.
Since when is there a police interrogation office that would identify itself on the phone?
Why are they calling Shany?
I would ordinarily think its a joke, but none of our friends could play a Russian accent like that.
All I could think off is I gave Shanys number for the student antidisengagement people instead of mine (it was truly a mistake). So maybe they got ahold of the list and wanted to identify whos on it. But how did they know we were Zacks?
And whos this Ariella Zacks? Is she a relative?
Whatever, this is a very confusing morning for me.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Back to the Topic

I really planned on studying yesterday. Studying and then working. But of course, man plans...
I was on the internet yesterday getting ready to study when I saw someone posted on the Ta Katom forum that they had space in their car for anyone going from Jeru to Ashkelon for the tent. (The tent is Ta Katoms information tent, they set up a tent in different cities, put on a little show, and get people to discuss what they feel about disengagement.) I called the guy and he said he was leaving right then. So I quickly throw on some orange and went. First we met outside Ashkelon, covered the cars in orange and did a "support" drive through the city. The people loved it. Many of them stood on their balconies waving and clapping, the cars near us honked in tune with us, kids in the parks outside were all jumping up and down, it was very cool. OK, so some people ignored us, and one guy got pissed that we were driving so slow and tried to cut us off to "get us back". (But he did have an orange ribbon in his car...) But overall, the vast majority of the people were happy to see us. Then we went to the city center of Ashkelon (not very impressive at all), set up our tent, our merchandise table, and we were ready. If Arabs dont have gush Katif to shoot their rockets at, theyre going to shoot them out of Gaza-right to Ashkelon. Our gimmick was umbrellas, we carried around umbrellas and gave people the little umbrella toothpick with a note "Upcoming forecast-expect Kassam rockets to rain down in your neighborhood if we dont stop the gov't's plan." There wasnt too many people there, not quite like town in Jerusalem, but who lives in Ashkelon? I had a nice talk with two soldiers, although they agreed with us, they were jobnikim.
On the way home we passed by Nitzanim. Thats where they plan on evacuating the Gazan Jews to. I dont know what I was expecting, but what I saw was totally depressing. Ive been to Gaza, it isnt another hilltop that a few people took over and are sleeping outside in tents. They have cities, nice two story houses with a nice lawn, its quiet, a view of the beach. Nitzanim is a trailer park. The only view is of the highway. Its just dirt and trailers. No grass, no view. Theyre building a dirt wall to block the highway from the "settlement". Probably so people driving by dont have to see what they did to these people. They may as well put up barbed wire and get a few Kapos to stand guard. Give it a more authentic feel. So maybe I'm exaggerating a bit. It just pisses me off to see that.

If they (the gov't) would make a true peace with the Arabs, and give up Gaza in exchange for a guarantee that we dont have to be scared of getting blown up or get shot at
-it would be bad enough.
If they wouldn't make peace, but would promise terror wouldnt increase
-it would be bad enough.
If they wouldnt promise anything, but would at least give the exiled people a normal place to live
-it would be bad enough.

Theres probably more but I have to run. Shabbat Shalom to all.

A Bit Off the Topic

Recently, conversations have been had about the presence of exes in ones life. I said, as I have always said, that there is no place for an ex in ones current life. What was there is over, and there is nothing positive to be gained from any continued relationship. It was pointed out to me that I was being hypocritical, as I continue to have contact with people I have dated, even if it is only through blogging. So, if I have dated you, lets make a deal. I wont comment on your site, and please dont comment on mine or my wifes.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

One of Those Days

Yesterday was another final. I might have passed. I doubt it. Its all about moed Bet. I know it wasnt going to go well when the bus missed the turn to Bar Ilan and went to Tel Aviv. In the hundreds of times Ive taken this bus, it has never missed the turn. Til yesterday. Then I went to a "restaurant" on campus to get an ice coffee, but they werent ready. Oh, this was at like 7AM, my test started at 8:30. The only highlight of the morning was a conversation I had before the test started.
Random stranger "You were at the protest by the bridges."
Me "Yeah... (said in a, how do you know, tone)"
Random Stranger "I saw you on TV"
So I started the test in a better mood then I'd been in, not that it helped, but whatever.
Theres been a presence outside Bibis house all week long, I havent been there, but they had it set up well. Two people, all day long, staying there, studying or whatever. All oranged up. The cops cant make them move, since its only 2 people, and to be called a protest it needs to be 3. Whenever Bibi comes, they yell their "support" for him for being against disengagement.
Also, every Friday theres a tent set up in Tel Aviv, where Orange Cell-ers go out and talk to the people, explain the dangers of disengaging, etc. On Thursday they have something set up, each week in a different city. This week its Ashkelon. If I can, I'm going to the one in Tel Aviv. More on that later.
Its amazing how nothing else seems important. How can I sit and study when my country is being sent to hell!!
For all you leftists and centrists (AKA Mendy) reading this, click on this link, and watch the video, Sakin Balev. (If link doesnt work, just google sakin balev). Its a 30 minute movie, very worth seeing.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Crossing Over (Burning Bridges?)

I did it. I've taken the step. I've gone from being one of those people that sit around saying how they feel the diengagement is bad, and turned into an activist. Didnt get arrested, but it was close.
I signed up with the Ta Hakatom (student anti disengagement party) because I was wating for a ride and really bored, and Mendy and I agreed to sign up. Since then theyve been calling (actually calling MyShan since I gave them her number-oops). I never went to their things but they kept calling. The other day they called and said that Sunday morning theyre going to be hanging dolls in effigy from bridges with a sign "Students against the suicide plan". I decided the time had come, so I decided to go. 6AM I was up and out of the house Sunday morning, off to conquer a bridge. I went to a bridge close to home, there were 5 other people there getting ready to hang up the signs and dolls. At first they seemed a bit suspicious of me, what with the Shabak having invaded everything else, but once I mentioned I had learned in Maale Adumim all was good. Anways, so we hung up our dolls and signs, then two of the girls left. Then we decided to rehang one of the dolls, since it wasnt so visible. So we took it back up and as we were restringing it, the cops came.
Cop"What are you doing"
Rachel (our ringleader)"hanging up signs that say the hitnatkut is a suicide plan, and hanging dolls. We have a permit to do this."
Cop"Come with me to my car"
Rachel "Its OK. We have a permit"
Cop "Come with me to my car, I dont have a radio on me, and I need to check if your allowed to be here"
So we left the other guy to hang up the doll, while Rachel and went to the cop car. Why he didnt make the other guy stop is beyond me. So we went to his car, he took our radios, radioed them in and found out we did have a permit and gave us back our ID's. Then he told us its not safe to hang the dolls cuz they may fall and cause an accident, but Rachel assured him that she is stdudying for aphysics degree and she knows it wont fall. Meanwhile, the other guy had already hung the doll while we werent there, so I dont know how the physics degree would help, but it was good enough for the cops. So we went back, took one of our signs, and stood by the side of the road while people hit their horns or ignored us. What is the appropriate response to someone hitting their horn in support? Then we got a call that one of the girls on a different bridge had been arrested. A third guy came by and said he was driving over to the jail to protest her arrest, so I joined him. We got there, and there were about twenty other Ta Katomers also protesting. The protest was about them taking away our freedom of speech so we did a silent protest, we all covered our mouth with orange rribbons holding our signs, while one guy explained to the cameras what we were doing. There was like 8 camera and video guys taping us. Then they let the girl go, on the condition she take all the signs down. That sounds impossible, but at that point, I had to go, so I left.

Friday, July 01, 2005

A Few Points

You ever write something really late at night, then look at it the next morning a bit confused as to where it came from? Yeah, so not that I disagree with my post, its just a bit disjointed....
During the road blocking one of the guys was arrested was yelling as they took him away "I didnt block the road, the Police are arresting me without reason". He said it over and over again as they took him to the van. So his picture is here, where he is sitting on the road, apperently blocking it....
I walked through the city today (Talpiyot-Town-Home), at every major junction I passed there was at least one kid giving out orange ribbon and one kid giving out blue. I think some people didnt quite get it, as they smiled and took one from each. A few cars and one biker had them both tied on. Its not like girl scout cookies that you buy from two different groups.....
Religious guys were giving out blue and white string on one corner. Are they for disengagement or are they just Zionist? Blue and white is too vague for this, it cant be one side since everyone is blue and white. Just some are also orange. Also, these ribbons dont burn. one guy took it nd tried to torch it with a cigarette. Didnt work......
New signs over town. "Kippa Sruga, where is your head?" and "Disengagement isnt the end of Zionism". Both signs were put out by "Realistic Religious Zionists". They arent necessarily for disengagement, they just said that theres so many more fights to come, dont get too hung up on this one. Also there were stickers from the homos that said "The Bet HaMikdash was destroyed from Sinat Chinam". So many Torah Books and thats all they could find? How about "If you do these abominations the land shall spit you out"?
Shabbat Shalom to all.

Raw Emotion

Disengagement is a shaky issue, lots of details, pros and cons and what not. Doesnt mean I dont love the protesting, but my political stance is still a bit centrist. Right, but centrist right. But one thing I'm very sure about is my feelings towards gay parades in Jerusalem. I was planning on being there, holding up a sign, "Take your abominations out of our Holy City", or some likewise theme. Yelling at them, letting them know that theyre not welcome here. If a man is in love with another man, that isnt a reason to stand up and shout about it. Its a sin. One of the worst sins. It corrupts society. And in Jerusalem? I walk through this city and feel spirituality. Theres no other reason to live here. I go to Tel Aviv, enjoy the beach, the fact that not every building is the exact same color, but in the end of the day, Jerusalem calls me. And in to this holy city they bring their shame?!? Of course the big day comes, and I'm not there. First I had a final in computers (pretty sure I'm passed), then I had my sister-in-laws birthday party. I was really tempted to ditch the party so I could yell at gays and let them know how I feel, but I didnt. Family is more important then gay-bashing. I just wish they wouldnt conflict. From what I heard, there was plenty of action without me. The weirdest thing was, a guy stabbed two people in the parade, but the news said it was a boyfriend and girlfriend. What? Well, Oy LRasha Oy Lschainu. Dont march with gays if you dont want to get stabbed. I think thats the lesson here. Everyones always against violence of Jew to Jew, but you got to remember, Pinchas killed Zimri for sleeping with a non-Jew and making a big deal about it. Sleeping with a non-Jew isnt such a big sin. Not nearly as big as being gay. The Kohanim all gathered around Moshe after the Golden Calf and went around killing all the ring leaders. Sometimes, you have to take a stance. The problem is, that those people killed entirely for God. We, or at least I, would also take pleasure in getting rid of these people, which would be self centered. You cant be a killer zealot if its at all self centered. And we are all sinners, so it seems very hyprocritical to sin and then yell at them for sinning. But I dont think its a contradiction. Sure we sin, but we dont define ourselves by it. I was really hoping the earth was going to open and swallow them, but I guess thats more of a once in a world thing. I'm just glad the news all focused on the anti gay protesting, and not just on the disgusting parade. Let the world know they could take their "gay pride" and gag on it til it kills them, but keep it out of Jerusalem!