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Below are 20 journal entries, after skipping by the 20 most recent ones recorded in Jewish Democrats' LiveJournal:

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Thursday, August 3rd, 2006
9:03 am
Have I not...?
One year ago today I boarded a plane and flew to a Muslim country. My trip was against the backdrop of the London bombings and many people urged caution, sometimes even imploring me to reconsider. But I went through with my plans and quite obviously sit before you today, with grand experience under my belt. Yet I wonder if my trip were this year rather than last, would I have gone through with it. I can say with relative clarity that I would feel uncomfortable today, even in the secular city of Istanbul, being a westerner, being an American, being a Jew...

I wonder how some of the people I met on that trip are feeling and thinking right now. I wonder if the Turkish brother and sister pair, western educated, are still enamored with Western culture. I'm curious as to whether the Italian student I met on the ship from Patras to Ancona is still as blind to European race relations now, in the aftermath of the European riots, as he was then. I especially wonder about the girl I met from Haifa. Because as uncomfortable as I may have felt were I overseas this year, as uncomfortable as I've been feeling in my own community of late, there is no way my discomfort can match that of being locked in a bomb shelter without air conditioning in the middle of summer. Does she know anyone who's been killed or injured? Does she know any soldiers, is she one? Is she in Lebanon now or is she dodging Hezbollah rockets in her home town? Does she ever wonder if that American Jew with the Irish name she met in London supports her nation in its endeavor? I don't know, I can't even remember her name.

What about my old friend from Hebrew school Michelle who's in Tel Aviv right now, or all the folks I've met over the years who've made Aliya? Are they in shelters now or on the front lines? What about the countless displaced Lebanese?

I cannot and will not sit here and condemn or support Israeli actions. Every time someone points out an act of horrific Israeli aggression I feel pain. I'm not stupid nor am I cruel. I don't like to see innocent people die, I hate it. I want this whole mess to be over with and I'll be honest, were there an immediate cease-fire I'd most likely breath a sigh of relief. Still, the fact remains. Israel, for all her transgressions, lives under the constant shadow of hatred and aggression. The fact remains that despite UN resolutions Lebanon failed to disarm Hezbollah who has been firing rockets into Israel since 2000. The fact remains that Hamas refuses to recognize Israel, would sooner have all Jews pushed into the Mediterranean, and refuses to disarm. The fact remains that whenever Israel even attemts diplomacy, Hamas and Hezbollah respond with rockets and suicide bombs.

However, Israel will ultimately take care of itself. Sooner or later a cease fire will be enacted and sooner or later there will be a lull in the fighting. There always has been and there will continue to be. As for a lasting, permanent peace I cannot say although I am not optimistic that it will occur anytime soon. As Prime Minister Golda Meir said, Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.

Yet as much as I'd like to see an immediate peace happen, I must move my concerns to other venues, specifically, a rising anti-Semitism here at home. You've heard it, haven't you my fellow sons and daughters of Jacob. It's crossed your minds and your ears and it has increased in the past month. I can point to big examples like the Seattle shooting and the "passion" of Mel Gibson but I can point to smaller ones as well, examples that hit a little bit closer to home and I think you can too. I've seen increased references on the blogs citing "the Jews" as a collective in reference to Israel and how "the Jews" started this, won't stop it or are collectively orchestrating it. Sometimes it’s innocent enough, if ignorant but often it carries more than a hint of real anti-Semitism, like the protests in New York that featured signs reading "Allah will destroy Israel" and "Is healing a virus anti-Semitism?" Not to mention the vitriolic venom being spat about on the yahoo message boards by neo-Nazis and Arab nationalists.

But it comes closer to home still. Just this past week, on two separate occasions by two separate individuals whom are known to me the phrase "to be Jewed" was used in some context. Once it was said in front of me, the other time it was told to me by a confidant who overheard it.

So you tell me fellow Children of Abraham. Do I notice a rustling in that ancient beast or is it my imagination? Am I overreacting and being hyper-sensitive, please let me know if I am because for our sake I hope that's the case. But I'm not am I?

Please my non-Jewish friends do not assume that I overlook you or devalue your opinion. If you've noticed it too and some of you have I know, please speak out. It's just that day to day anti-Semitism is a subtle shadow that non-Jews are want to miss, as you're not trained to notice it.

I can abide criticism of Israel, of Olmert, and of Zionism. I can stand critiques on AIPAC, the ADL and my country's support of Israel. I can appreciate concern for the Palestinians and the Lebanese for I also want them to live safe and free. But when one turns those items against the Jews as a group I draw the line. When one blames Jews for worldly troubles I become upset. And when people use the opportunity to drag to the surface, age old slurs and accusations I become enraged.

I call on all my friends, Jew or Gentile to reject the vile, anti-Jewish hate speech that has bubbled once again into the vernacular. I call on everyone to notice that anti-Semitism is on the rise in our communities and I implore you to recognize it and condemn it when encountered.

I call on all my Jewish friends to stand together on this. Whether you are for or against the state of Israel and her actions you are still a Jew and you have a responsibility to protect the community when it is threatened. Israel is not our country and will continue her actions with our without our support. We must ensure that we stand in solidarity as Jews when others stand against us wherever we are. To be a member of The Nation of Israel is not to be a citizen of the Israeli political entity, rather it is to be part of the lineage that extends back to the Tribes of Jacob.

Am Yisrael Chai-For Israel there is Life. Does it refer to the political state? For some it does but those 'some' miss the underlying meaning. It translates better as "For the People of Israel there is life," the people meaning Jews in Palestine and the Diaspora, the people descended from Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecca, Jacob, Rachel and Leah. Am Yisrael means even more than that. It is the spirit of our people that was with us in Egypt, at Masada, and during the Inquisition. It sustained us through the horrors of the pogroms, Warsaw, Sobibor and Auschwitz. It allowed us back to Jerusalem and keeps Jerusalem with us, wherever we may be. Regardless of whether or not we support the State of Israel, we must support each other. Everything else is secondary.

Shema Yisrael Adonai eloheinu, Adonai echad.

Osey shalom bimromav, huya'sey shalom aleinu vayhachol Yisrael, vimru amen.
Monday, July 17th, 2006
10:50 pm

cross-posted here and there.

I don't know, the whole situation is messed up.

My first reaction is always to yell Am Yisrael Chai or something like that. Years of Hebrew and Sunday school will do that to you. And the fact is, the amount of anti-Israel language is chafing and often walks a line between anti-zionism and anti-semitism.

But I'm not dumb and I'm not a war hawk and at this point, I'd like to see Israel be a bit more amenable to negotiation. I don't like to see innocent Palestinians and Lebanese die.

And yet at the same time It's difficult to ignore the amount of sheer hatred that surrounds Israel. I think we all know, deep in our hearts that were the roles reversed, the situation would be much worse for us. Either that or we'd all be living in the US. However, that does not excuse Israel from heavy-handed, extreme military action. It only makes the situation more difficult.

I'll admit that at first, I was all pro-Israel, crush Hezbollah, free Lebanon. I still am I suppose but ultimetely, it's not that easy. What convinced me that the current action may not go the way Israel hopes was predictibly, the Monkey-shrub's "off the record" opinions. Simple shows of extreme military force without a plan for negotiation or exit rarely work. If one doesn't believe that, well, ask Iraq.

I guess what makes it so hard is that I want to support Israel unconditionally but my morals, ethics, values and my Judaism itself keep getting in the way of that. But then Hamas goes and commits another suicide bombing or Iran calls for Israel to be "wiped off the map" or some punk in France paints a swastika on a Jewish cemetary and that retributive, "Genesis style" emotion rears up again.

I think that if youasked most young American Jews, they'd offer up either some tepid, detached support of Israel or have little opinion whatsoever. My brother fits the latter catagory. Very few of us have strong opinons on it one way or another and that's just sad. But it is understandable. The situation is so convoluted, politically and emotionally that sometimes it's easier to do ones best to ignore it.

I however cannot. I love Israel and want her to truly be a beacon in the middle-east for justice, peace and freedom. So it pains me equally when Israel overdoes its military reactions and when more hatred for her bubbles up around the world.

As a semi-related aside, I heard Pat Buchanan today on MSNBC lament that both sides were behaving in a very "un-Christian" manner. It's good to know that he has a strong grounding in the obvious.

Tuesday, June 13th, 2006
9:27 am
Jewish by Birth, Christian by the grace of Ann Coulter!
Ann Coulter Strikes Again!

I'm really glad she was able to straighten my whole 'Jewish Identity' qualms out. What a Mensch.

Seriously, what is with her this week though? I mean she's always bad but this week she's been in rare form. Maybe she contracted the clap.
Thursday, March 23rd, 2006
7:24 pm
Wednesday, March 22nd, 2006
7:41 pm
Russian KGB and Nazi in Polish Parliament

This photo is absolutely real.  The person on photo is the deputy of the Polish Sejm (national parliament) from populist Self-Defense (Samoobrona) party Mr. Mateusz Piskorski. He is known as editor-in-chief of nazi-rasist magazine “Odala”, as leader of Polish skinhead’s movement and radical anti-semite who has been elected in parliament in 2005.


In “Odala” Mateusz Piskorski sang the praises of the “Aryan Race”, Hitler, SS, Gestapo with their struggle against “world Jewish plot” and ideologies “foreign to our race, like Christianity, Liberalism, and Marxism” publishing interviews with Holocaust deniers. Except for that, he and the leader of parliamentary fraction of populist Self-Defense party Andrzej Lepper are the big fans of Russian president Vladimir Putin and of Belarus dictator Alexander Lukashenko.


Last five years skinhead Mateusz Piskorsky some times visited Russia where he has old friends among Russian Nazis. Many of them are connected with former KGB which has now renamed in “Federal Security Service of Russia” (FSB in Russian).


Vladimir Putin and Russian Ministry for Foreign Affairs have accepted the special political program concerning Eastern Europe. So, in 2005 agent of FSB and well known Russian Nazi Alexei Kochetkov has organized the official visit of his friend Mateusz Piskorski to small, but very criminal “state” Transdniestria (rebel part of Moldova) with the purpose of political support of local dictatorship. Heads of Transdniestria are searched by the Interpol for the illegal traffic in arms and weapons, the murders, money-laundering, terrorism, genocide and drug traffic. But they have the Russian citizenship personally and use Russian support in their policy. Actually FSB supervises a situation in this rebel region and colleagues of Vladimir Putin receive a lot of money from Transdniestrian criminal business.


During his visit to Transdniestria the deputy of Polish parliament Mateusz Piskorski on behalf of Poland, on behalf of Self-Defense party and its leader Andrzej Lepper confirm “legality and correctness” of not free and completely forged parliamentary elections in this rebel region. After that Russia has started to provide nonofficial financial support of Piskorski’s and Lepper’s activity. So, now Self-Defense party (one of the most influential Polish political parties) is financed by Russians through the Polish Nazi and known agents of FSB-KGB.


Deputies of Polish parliament receive some of Russian money, as fees for the participation in election monitoring in the countries of former Soviet Union (Belarus dictator Alexander Lukashenko, dictator of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov, former Ukraine Prime Minister Victor Yanukovich and others) in their struggle against the democratic oppositions during the elections.. In 2005 Mateusz Piskorski has been registered, as the observer from CIS Election Monitoring Organization (CIS EMO) on elections of Transdniestrian parliament. This Russian nongovernmental organization has been created by agent of FSB Alexei Kochetkov under direction of FSB. CIS EMO purpose consists in public support of the proRussian state leaders.


Now Russian KGB-Nazi Alexei Kochetkov, racist Polish deputy Mateusz Piskorski and another members of  Self-Defense party are registered on elections of the Ukrainian Parliament, as the observer from CIS EMO. According to Ukrainian mass-media, FSB (through CIS EMO) has already transferred money to Andrzej Lepper and soon Mateusz Piskorski will arrive to Ukraine with his colleagues from Polish parliament. Their purpose consists in support of the proRussian political parties on Ukrainian elections.


In more detail about relations of Polish parliament, Self-Defense party, the Polish Nazi and Russian KGB look in clause published in Ukrainian magazine "Tribuna", informational agency “Maidan”, Polish newspaperGazeta Wyborcza”, “Searchlight” and others media.


It is possible to receive comments from the Poland also:

Self-Defense (Samoobrona) party and parliamentary fraction:

Phones: +48 (22) 6942583 (parliamentary fraction), +48 (22) 6250472 (party office)

Faxes: +48 (22) 6250477 (party office),  +48 (22) 6942606 (parliamentary fraction),

e-mail: Andrzej.Lepper@sejm.pl

Deputy of Polish parliament Mr. Mateusz Piskorski:

phones: +48 (22) 6942583, +48 (91) 8122658, e-mail: Mateusz.Piskorski@sejm.pl

Chairman of Polish parliament Mr. Marek Jurek:

Fax: + 48 (22) 694 22 13, e-mail: Marek.Jurek@sejm.pl

Thursday, March 9th, 2006
7:32 pm
Saturday, January 14th, 2006
4:04 pm
Josh's Bar Mitzvah project: Fight Katrina Fatigue
As part of his Bar Mitzvah project, our nephew Joshua set up an online petition, Fight Katrina Fatigue, to encourage our congress to move forward in providing the necessary funding to upgrade the levees of New Orleans and begin the process of restoration. To sign this petition, please go to:
Thursday, January 5th, 2006
5:30 pm
Why am I not surprised?
Definitely disgusted, though. Hopefully the linked article is self-explanatory:

Wednesday, January 4th, 2006
5:21 pm
Ariel Sharon
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has been admitted to the hospital yet again for a significant stroke.
Sharon, 77, is scheduled for an operation Thursday to repair a small hole in his heart. The hole was discovered during tests after Sharon suffered a minor stroke December 18.

Although Sharon had difficulty speaking during the stroke, neurological testing found that he recalled everything from the night of his admission, Lotem said.

Doctors said Monday that Sharon suffered no lasting brain damage. He was released from the hospital two days after the stroke and has resumed his work load.

The health scare has raised concerns about the leader's ability to work as he runs for a third term. The elections will be held at the end of March.

Many Israelis feel he is the Israeli official best able to carry forward peace negotiations with the Palestinians.

This year Sharon orchestrated Israel's historic pullout from Gaza in hopes of jump-starting the peace process.
The Associated Press has the latest update saying that the prime minister has suffered a cerebral hemorrhage while having the latest surgery.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon suffered a cerebral hemorrhage Wednesday and was receiving breathing assistance while under general anesthetic, a hospital official said. Power was transferred to his deputy.

Sharon, 77, suffered a "significant" stroke and was brought to Jerusalem's Hadassah Hospital from his ranch in the Negev desert, an official said. Channel 2 TV said Sharon was suffering from paralysis in his lower body and was taken into the hospital on a stretcher.

Dr. Shlomo Mor-Yosef, the hospital's director general, said Sharon was under general anesthetic and was receiving breathing assistance while doctors assessed his condition.

A few minutes later, Mor-Yosef emerged to say that initial tests showed Sharon had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, or bleeding in his brain.

Addressing reporters in English, Mor-Yosef said Sharon had "massive bleeding and was being transferred to an operating theater."

Cabinet Secretary Yisrael Maimon said Sharon's authority had been transferred to Vice Premier Ehud Olmert.
My thoughts and prayers are with the prime minister and his family.
Wednesday, December 28th, 2005
2:42 pm
shaungoldstein has been banned for essentially fusing regurgitated garbage from Protocals and classic racialist muck. Some folks think he is an angry Palastinian though my money is on white racist. Jew he is not...Or at least I really hope he's not.
Thursday, December 15th, 2005
6:37 pm
More from our spot in Washington and the concern over the growing power of the Christian Right.

8:27 pm
7:54 pm
Tuesday, December 6th, 2005
6:24 pm
I could use a little help
Hello everyone. My name is Chris, I’m from Manchester, CT, and I go to Central Connecticut State University. I’m doing a research assignment for my cultural anthropology class and I was wondering if anyone might have a little time to answer some questions for me so I can include it in my report?? Part of my assignment is to interview a few people about their religious beliefs, so if anyone could help, I’d really appreciate it. I am required to ask questions about a religion that I am unfamiliar with so I chose Judaism. I put the questions below in a LJ-cut and also included the place to email your answers to. I’d appreciate it if anybody (of the Jewish faith) could help. Thank you very much, everyone. Take care.

”assignment”Collapse )

-Chris Sheehan
Saturday, December 3rd, 2005
10:40 pm
Saturday, November 19th, 2005
9:59 pm
You can take the Jew out of New York, but you can't take the New York out of the Jew
I dug this one up over at jewish_gop. Sounds like some of our tribesfolk are having the begginings of what may be second thoughts, about the President at least.


On a semi related note, some political words from some leaders of the community.


Current Mood: amused
6:21 pm
Saturday, October 8th, 2005
3:57 pm
Friday, October 7th, 2005
12:33 pm
Oy vey

You might have to register for this but Bush is siding with Iran over the bombings of a Jewish community Center. Depressing.
Tuesday, October 4th, 2005
9:59 pm
So I'm totally conflicted. I've been considering of late, joining a reconstructionist synagogue. It seems like a perfect fit as it were. I agree spiritually with the liberal approach to dogma, the focus on social justice and the conservative application of the tradition itself. In fact the service I attended today looked to any outward observer like a conservative service. However, one would only need to listen for awhile to hear the progressive, inclusive, affirming nature of the service. I love that juxtaposition with rigid ritual.

The problem arises from that very "inclusive," knowledge-seeking aura of this congregation. Part of being inclusive and affirming is being open to the prospect of listening to other viewpoints. A plethora of speakers, grace this synagogue's halls for special events and one of the next ones is...Ari Fleischer. Yuck.

Actually, I'm not really conflicted, I'm probably going to join. But Ari Fleischer? Isn't there a rock somewhere that he needs to climb back under? he was better I suppose than Scotty-boy but ughh.

Shanah Tovah everyone.
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