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The religion of Barack Hussein Obama

July 14, 2010 Leave a comment

 By J. Zel Lurie

J. Zel Lurie

DEL RAY BEACH, Florida–President Obama’s religious affiliation is in the news  again.  The Moslem fingerprints on his early life were prominently  displayed  during the 2008 primary campaign against Hillary Rodham Clinton and in  the election against John McCain.

 The voters paid no attention but some Jewish bloggers made a  big  stink about Obama being a closet Moslem.  The reply of Jewish voters was to give Obama a greater majority than any previous president.
  
Now that the relations between Obama’s Administration and the  right-wing government of Israel are a bit  strained the Jewish  bloggers are  at it again.  This time they have the evidence of the  Foreign Minister of  Egypt Ahmed Aboul Gheit.  Mr. Gheit is alleged to  have said on Egyptian TV  that in a conversation with Obama, the President said that he was really a  Moslem and that he had half-brothers in Kenya who were Moslems.
  
Hosni Mubarak’s foreign minister would have to be an idiot to  say anything derogatory about Barack Obama on public TV.  But assuming the  story is true, what are the facts about Obamas religion?
  
President Obama was born in 1961 in Honolulu to Ann Dunham of  Wichita, Kansas and Barack Hussein Obama Sr., a black Moslem student from  Kenya.
  
His parents were divorced when Obama was two years old.   His father left  for Connecticut and then returned to Kenya where he married  again and had five sons and a daughter.  There is no evidence that Obama  Sr. played any role in the life of Obama Jr.
  
Barack Hussein Obama Jr. spent his early formative years in  Hawaii with his mother and stepfather, a Moslem from Indonesia named  Soetro.   When Barack was six years old, Mr. Soetro lost his residence permit and the family, which included a younger half-sister, moved to Jakarta in  Indonesia.
  
From age 6 to 10 Barack Obama attended public schools in  Jakarta.  A  school registration has been unearthed for Barry Soetro, a  Moslem.
  
Obviously dissatisfied with the Jakarta schooling, at age 10,  his  mother shipped the boy to her mother in Kansas.  The President has  credited his grandmother with playing the key role in his upbringing.  From  Kansas schools to Harvard to Chicago to the United States Senate  and finally the  White House, he was a black American of the Christian faith.  He has always  belonged to a church.  He was married in a church and his children were  baptized.
  
So how come the President and the Egyptian Foreign Minister  were  discussing Moslem affiliations?  The Egyptian might have brought up  the Moslem dictum:  Born to a Moslem father you remain a Moslem all your  life.
  
This contrasts with the Jewish religion.  Born to a  Jewish mother you  remain a Jew in your life.  The rabbis have found an  escape clause.  If you convert to another religion, you cease to be a  Jew.
  
Hitler did not recognize conversions.  He looked upon the  Jews as a race and not a religion.
  
I am unaware that the Moslems have a similar clause.  Nor  was Obama  ever converted.  His mother and his grandmother considered him to  be a Christian from birth.
  
Does his Moslem biological father have any effect on his  actions on the Israel Palestinian dispute?  Not in the slightest.
  
I wouldnt care if Obama used the Lincoln room to touch his  forehead to the floor in Moslem prayer five times a day.  To paraphrase Ben Gurion what counts is what he does, not to whom he prays.
  
Here is what he does.  His first step into the Mideast  cauldron was  to appoint George Mitchell, who brought peace to Ireland, as his   special envoy to the Palestine-Israel conflict.  Next he appointed  Rahm  Emanuel, whose father fought the British to achieve a Jewish state, as his chief  of staff. His chief strategist, David Axelrod, is also  Jewish.
  
Last month Rahm Emanuel took his daughter to Israel for her  Bat Mitzvah.  While there he invited Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to  the White House.  The state visit occurred July 6.
  
Obama’s Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton had powerful  Jewish  backers in her fight for the presidency.

 She has been instrumental in securing a ten-month freeze on  construction of settlements.  Although every  President has opposed the settlements, this is the first time that Israel was  pressured  into agreeing to a freeze since Jimmy Carter got Menachem Begin to agree to a freeze during the Camp David negotiations.  That freeze lasted  three months.
  
The proximity talks now going on under George Mitchell are the  crowning achievement of the Obama Administration.  Mitchell has held   several meetings devoted to solving Israels security needs.
  
Israel says that its security will depend on its continued  control of  the West Bank’s Eastern border.  To me, a Zionist, who is  familiar with Israel’s problems, this is an understandable request.   Secretary of State Clinton  must look at the question differently.  How can  a sovereign state  allow a former enemy to control its frontier?
  
This is the type of question that the talks under George  Mitchell must solve.  Next is defining the permanent frontiers of the two  states, Israel and Palestine, including the division of East Jerusalem.   Then there is the question of Tel Aviv’s water which comes mostly from West Bank  aquifers.   Then there is the perennial question of the 1948 refugees and  many other minor questions.
 
George Bush ignored these complex questions, allowing Israel  to continue the evil occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.  Barack Obama  will do his best to achieve two states living side by side in peace and  security. The question of his Moslem father is a red herring that is  beginning  to stink.

*

Lurie is a freelance writer based in Del Ray Beach.  His articles appear regularly in the Jewish Journal of South Florida.

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Passion and compassion characterized UJF Men’s Event

February 1, 2010 Leave a comment

 By Randy Fadem

SAN DIEGO–The United Jewish Federation held its annual Men’s Event at the La Jolla Hyatt Regency of Wednesday January 27, 2010. Over 800 Jewish men attended.

They were treated to a gala evening of presentations by UJF dignitaries, program recipients, and  two featured speakers, Shahar Azani, Consul for Culture  at the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles, and Brigitte Gabriel, one of the leading experts in the world on Islamic global terrorism.

The evening’s opening remarks were delivered by UJF CEO Steven Morris. He said no other organization can do what the Federation does. It takes care of those in need; it can mobilize swiftly both at home and abroad, alone or in conjunction with its overseas partners. He cited the recent earthquake in Haiti as an example of how the Federation puts Jewish values into action.

The Federation raised over $2 million dollars for Haitian relief.. Working alongside the IDF’s field hospital unit, the Federation purchased a neo-natal incubator unit and had it shipped to Haiti. One of the children born in that unit was named Israel by his grateful mother.

Mr. Morris also noted that the work of Jewish Federations throughout the United States hold a very special meaning for him. After his father survived Auschwitz and arrived in the United States, it was Jewish Philanthropy that gave him his life back and enabled him to build a new life and start a family.

Shahar Azani  is the former Ambassador to Kenya. He is also an attorney and a specialist on the Arab press. As an official in the Israeli consulate in Los Angeles, Mr Azani works to bring the resources of Israel to American audiences and improved the image and understanding of Israel and the Israeli people.

A recent visit by Israeli artists to East Los Angeles high schools, left the American kids remarking, “Israel is really cool!”

 In his comments, Azani stated that he firmly believes that a true peaceful solution will only come when the grass roots youth in the neighboring countries understand that Israel will not disappear off the face of this earth.  When they understand this, and accept it, then they will be willing to meet Israel move together into the future.

He reminded the men attending that Israel will not lose this struggle because it cannot afford to. For each obstacle that arises, Israel will struggle to find the next solution. Israel is ready for these crises to come because it has gotten used to them.

With the approach of the 150th anniversary of the birth of Theodor Herzl, it is important to acknowledge the successes of the Zionist dream: Israeli high tech and the life saving knowledge and devices it has given to the world. There has been no better example than Israel’s working alongside the International Red Cross, and especially Norway (known for its antipathies towards Jews and Israel) in the recent Hatian Relief efforts. It was important for the world to see Jewish Values in action. “I love you San Diego. Thank you very much.”

One of the members of the audience enthused afterwards that the Men’s Event had most likely hosted a future prime minister of Israel.

The Vice President for the Annual Campaign, David Geffen presented two of the many successes that the UJF makes possible.

Evan Reed, a student at Patrick Henry High School, recounted that the UJF Teen Trip to Israel changed his life and his perspective. Prior to the trip, being Jewish was not his focus in life. Now it is.  Evan did go out of his way to say about  nourishment in Israel:  “The food is okay.”

Representing the Jewish Big Pal Program was Avi and Michael. Over the years their relationship has actually grown into big brother and little brother, both stated.  One of the significant changes that developed was that now Michael is taller than Avi. This past summer Michael was an honored guest at Avi’s wedding.

When Gabriel concluded her remarks,it seemed as if the carpets had curled from the floor, the paint had peeled off the walls, and the members attending had removed their credit cards and were rewriting their pledges to the Annual Campaign. Her talk was a no holds barred barn burner of a stump speech without any cue cards or teleprompter.

She recounted for the audience the miracle of her life: that her very existence and that of her mother was due to the intervention of the IDF not once but several times. As a Lebanese Christian, she had been born and raised in a village nestling on a hillside directly across from the Israeli city of  Metula. 

The civil war in Lebanon blossomed in full when King Hussein of Jordan evicted Arafat’s Palestinian gunmen from his country.  Taking root in Lebanon, they supported the Islamic jihadist elements to strike out against the balance that had prevailed between Muslim and Christian.

Her life changing experiencing occurred in the emergency room at a Tsfat hospital where she had brought her mother after the latter had been wounded. Lying on the floor side by side and waiting to be treated were Muslim and Christian civilians, South Lebanese militiamen, Palestinian gunmen, and IDF soldiers. She said she couldn’t believe in the Love and Forgiveness that possessed these Jews: that to them saving a life meant just that.

After this experience, she went on to become an anchor for World News Television in Israel. She regularly appears as guest analyst on Fox, CNN, MSNBC, and ABC. She reminded the audience that for over four decades Saudia Arabia has exported propaganda to all the mosques in the United States. It has also funded most of the Middle East Studies Programs at American Universities and thus shaped the points of view of Americans currently working in the arenas of communication and mass media.

There is a war going on between barbarism and civilization. Further, she said, most  Arab children are taught to hate. They are further taught that there will be no peace until Islam reigns supreme.

“The men in this audience, you Jews, offer the world the values of compassion, of forgiveness, even unto loving your enemies. Do not forget this. Send this message to the  world. I love you. Thank you and good night.”

*
Fadem is a freelance writer based in La Mesa

Israel’s humanitarian efforts in Haiti

January 20, 2010 1 comment

By Shoshana Bryen

WASHINGTON, D.C — As the first Israel Defense Forces (IDF) emergency aid team (there is now a second) left for Haiti, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “Given Israel’s security needs, we have accumulated much search and rescue experience over the years. We have applied this experience previously in disaster scenes throughout the world – in Mexico, Argentina, Armenia, Kenya, Turkey and elsewhere. I hope and wish that the Israeli mission will succeed, this time as well, in saving as many lives – children, parents and families – in Haiti as possible.”

There was no irony in his comment, but there could have been.

The “experience” to which he referred was, of course, experience pulling Israeli victims of terror out of buildings and buses bombed by Hamas and Fatah over the years. Israeli medical triage for large-scale trauma is a necessarily well-developed art, and ZAKA’s skill in handling gruesome wreckage with dignity for the victims-living and dead-will be put to good use in the devastation of Haiti. ZAKA is the Israeli volunteer, non-governmental rescue, life-saving and recovery organization.

The IDF team consisted of a medical mission and search and rescue teams. The search and rescue included 30 operators and dozens of operations personnel including logistics, IT, communications and canine units. The medical team established one of the largest medical facilities currently operating in Haiti, able to treat up to 500 patients per day and equipped with:
Operating rooms
An intensive care ward
A maternity ward – at least two babies have been born
Pediatrics ward
Incubator units
Pharmacy
X-ray equipment
10 tons of medical equipment
90 beds, 66 intensive care beds and two delivery beds
Approximately 250 personnel, including 40 doctors and specialists, 20 nurses and several paramedics.

Also without irony was Jamal Al-Khudary, head of the “Committee to Break the Siege” of Gaza, who announced aid from Gaza to Haiti. “We are here today supporting the victims of Haiti. We feel for them the most because we were exposed to our own earthquake during Israel’s war on Gaza.”
It would be laughable to think of the Palestinians under Hamas rule-suffering for their own lousy leadership’s decision to make war on the people of Israel from behind the civilians of Gaza-as innocent victims, if the dire situation in Haiti would allow us to laugh. It is disgusting for Palestinians to appropriate a natural disaster of historic magnitude and compare it to the inevitable consequence of Hamas’s veneration of violence, despoiling of its own children and the degradation of the Jewish people-despite which Israel continues to spend millions providing food and other aid to the people of Gaza.

We suspect the Haitian people will simply be grateful for Israel’s dedication to saving lives wherever its skills are needed. We are.

*
Bryen is senior director of security policy of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.  Her column is sponsored by Waxie Sanitary Supply in memory of Morris Wax, longtime JINSA supporter and national board member

Adventures in San Diego Jewish History, March 5, 1954, Part III

January 16, 2010 Leave a comment

Compiled by Gail Umeham

Jewish Center News
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 6

Junior News–In addition to the Puppet Show and Dance presentation on Wednesday, March 17th, 4 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center, juniors will be treated to a magic show by Larry Lessner, local teen-age magician.  The members of the Arts and Crafts and Ballet and Creative dance classes are having fun and are busy at work organizing their program.  Games and refreshments will complete the program.

Special activities for the spring vacation week beginning Monday, April 13th, will be organized at the Jewish Community Center.  The center will be open from morning to evening for all ages, and special trips are scheduled.  Details of the program will be announced in the next issue of the Jewish Press.

It is not too early to plan to attend the 8th season of Camp Jaycee, beginning Monday, June 28th and continuing for 8 weeks.  Efforts are being made to reduce fees for those members who pay in advance and so we suggest that you start saving for a summer of less expensive fun.  Emphasis will be place on more outdoor activities such as nature study and crafts, pioneer camping and hikes; with all activities geared to the needs and abilities of each age group.

Teen-Age–At a Teen-age Committee meeting held at the Jewish Community Center on Thursday, February 26th, the following proposals were presented:

  1.  A special party for all Jewish Youth on Saturday, March 27th in honor of National Jewish Youth Week…March 19th-27th.
  2. A one-act play contest to be held in May.
  3. A committee appointed to plan special summer activities for the older teen-agers.
  4. A suggestion box for program ideas—to be installed at the Center.

Teen-age members of the committee are:  Bob Beck, Chuck Fagelson, Donna Godes, Gail Kahn, Beverly Kitaen, Leon Leichtag, Lois Liff, Natalie Veitzer and Mike Witte.  Adults were represented by Mr. and Mrs. Ruben Aved, Mr. and Mrs. William Breitbard and Dr. and Mrs. Harry Kaufman.

 *

Y.J.C. Club Dances
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 6

Dan Delaney of the City Recreation Department will again conduct a square dancing lesson at the Young Jewish Couples Club on Saturday, March 20, at the Tifereth Israel Synagogue, as requested by enthusiastic “students” at their last “class.”

The dancing will be part of an exciting evening that will also contain its serious counterpart when Dr. Edward Abrams will discuss The New Frontiers in Medicine.

Please note that the night will be Saturday instead of Sunday.

J.C.C. Women’s League To Honor Board
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 6

The Women’s League of the Jewish Community Center are planning a get-acquainted tea for the women board members and the wives of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Community Center.  Tea will be served from 1-3 o’clock, Thursday, March 25, at the Center, 3227 El Cajon Blvd.  A general Open House Tea is planned for May 6 where the general public will be invited.

*

Temple Men’s Club Elects New Officers
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 6

The newly-organized Men’s Club of Temple Beth Israel held its election of officers at its first meeting.  Elected were Richard Lustig, Pres.; Charles Silverman, V.P.; Herb Blakesman, Rec. Sec.; Harley Babbitz, Corr. Sec.; Ben Carnot, Treas.

Board members are Al Brooks, Morris Douglas, Hugh Wolff, Mack Esterson, Don Pogrell and Richard Silberman.  Rabbi Morton J. Cohn is Advisor to the group.  The next dinner meeting will be held March 16 at 6:30 p.m. in the Temple Center.

A New American Friend (Editorial)
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 7

We have remarked on many past occasions in these columns about the resurgence of Nazi sentiment to the young West German Republic.  We have more than once called to task our own government for failing to put the brakes on this development when responsible U.S. leadership seemed to us to be in a position to express its dissatisfaction to Bonn in the matter.

Some time ago, we came to the sad realization that if we were to editorialize on the general Neo-Nazi trend, confining ourselves to its major manifestations only, we would be incapable of commenting upon any other significant situation in the news-national, international or local.

This, perhaps, gives some indication of the rapidity with which former Third Reich personalities, many of them condemned to death and imprisonment, are now reassuming positions of importance on the West German and Austrian governments.  Having evaded justice, they are prepared to start where they left off at the end of World War II.

In fact, there is really little reason for us to take the occasion again to comment on the returning Nazi fashion—except that in this case we are dealing with one of Hitler’s aces, a man convicted as a war criminal by a British court for acts which included slaughter of many hundreds of Jews in the Ardeatine Cave massacres in Rome.

Field Marshal Albert Kesselring is known to all.  As we understand it, he sat in the cockpit of an American jet fighter last week and beamed while an American flying officer explained to him its controls, instrument panel and other technical equipment.  Kesselring has been invited to lunch by Col. Donald W. Armstrong, along with twenty other German veteran pilots.  Half were Goering’s former Luftwaffe generals.

We really don’t believe this situation requires more comment.  It needs only to be brought to light.  It seems to us that editorializing in this case had best be highly personal—and above all silent.

*

Hop, Skip and Protocol (Editorial)
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 7

The notorious forgery, Protocols of Zion, crops up all over the world, and it seems to us that the dim-witted persons who fall for its principles must be regarded with something more than a vague sense of humor.

The forgery was published in the Mexican press less than two months ago and created enough of a stir there to cause Henry Ford II several days later to deny his late father’s hand in the Protocols in a New York writer’s syndicated column.

Members of the Colorado State Legislature received copies of the forgery from Conde McGinley, publisher of the hate sheet, Common Sense, sometime early this week as part of McGinley’s campaign to circulate the Protocols among legislators throughout the country.

Perhaps the strangest fate of the Protocols was reported Monday from Nairobi, capital of the British colony of Kenya.  A local newspaper there is printing the forgery as “evidence” of Jewish support of the native revolutionary Mau Mau movement.

More and more, we feel that education above everything else is needed in this world of ours—and that the ability to read by no means proves that we have acquired the ability to understand.  Mau Mau, indeed.


Community Currents
Southwestern Jewish Press March 5, 1954 Page 7

By Albert Hutler, Exec. Director United Jewish Fund

Don’t Underestimate Our Teen-Agers

The Hutlers have a daughter who is going to be confirmed in June.  Last Sunday, we sat through a meeting of the confirmation class and parents of the Confirmants.  Part of the discussion included the question of what the young people had learned during their tenures of Sunday School.  I received the impression that they suddenly found that in the eighth, ninth grades, the things they studied in previous grades and which bored them immensely, came to life and they began to understand.  Evidently, one of the things for which they were most thankful was the course in contemporary religion where they were able to find out how other worship.

These teen-age youngsters show that they have good heads on their little shoulders.  In the discussion relating to the confirmation party, every one of them preferred a party in someone’s home to a party in a night club or a private club with an orchestra.  At times, they show better judgment than their parents.

At the meeting, it struck me that there is a danger point as far as Judaism is concerned and that is the period between confirmation and the time these youngsters reach their adulthood.  What happens to them as far as their religion is concerned during this period greatly depends on their home and their parents.

The Jewish Social Service Agency
Last Sunday, the Chest announced its allocations to our local agencies.  The Jewish Social Service Agency received an increase of 40 percent to a total of about $14,500.

When we consider that in 1947, the agency, after being one of the founders of the Chest and having been in existence over 25 years, was receiving $2,400, we realize the kind of gain that has been made by those of us who are interested in Jewish family welfare.  By 1951, because we professionalized the agency, we were able to secure an increase up to $5,500.  In 1951, Mrs. Rubenstein was added to the staff and because of the continued prestige and effort on her part, as well as the excellent work of the officers of the agency and its board, the Jewish Social Service Agency has taken its rightful place in the community.  It is recognized as having one of the outstanding staffs in field of family welfare, and its recognition is highlighted by the amount of money it now receives from the Community Chest.

Community Center—Synagogues
There are areas of cooperation between the synagogues and the Community Center.  This has been the theme of the Federation, the Fund and the Community Center for several years.  There are areas in which the synagogue is now working with young people in which Center staff and programming can be of great assistance.  On the other hand, there are areas in which the Center is now working in which the synagogue can be of great assistance.  If this type of thing can be worked out our community will be much better for it and our young people will be much happier.  Along this line, there have been discussions between the presidents and rabbis of our various synagogues and a committee of the Center.  They are studying the areas of cooperation and the areas of need under the very excellent chairmanship of Maury Novak and Henry Price.  These two men are seriously interested in this problem and the challenge that it offers and if good hard work can accomplish anything, they will see that it is achieved.

UJA – Loan
I ran into Leo Gallin the other evening in Los Angeles at a wedding reception.  We spent a few minutes talking about the $75,000,000 loan that the United Jewish Appeal is attempting to raise from American Jewish communities in order to help Israel take care of its short-term financing problems.  He tells me that about $63,000,000 has already been committed, of which a very high percentage has already been received.  The response from American Jewish communities has been excellent and it is anticipated that the loan will be completed within the next thirty days.  San Diego is going to be part of this loan in order to help Israel stabilize its economy.

1954 Campaign
Campaign plans are shaping up very well.  The response to the recent request for workers sent out by Sol Price, chairman, is the best in any campaign and it is anticipated that well over 200 workers will be dedicated to the 1954 Combined Jewish Appeal.

The Women’s Division again has strong leadership and it is expected that it will do the same fine job that it has always done in the past.  One thing about the Women’s Division is that those who have served as chairmen continue to retain their interest and act as an advisory committee in assisting the chairman for the present campaign.

The campaign is receiving complete cooperation from all facets of the Jewish community.  It is expected that even the children in our religious schools will contribute more this year than ever before.  The drive will also include an effort to secure more than 1800 contributors and to make for much greater coverage.

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“Adventures in Jewish History” is sponsored by Inland Industries Group LP in memory of long-time San Diego Jewish community leader Marie (Mrs. Gabriel) Berg. Our indexed “Adventures in San Diego Jewish History” series will be a daily feature until we run out of history.