Yom Kippur, The Highest Holy Day In The Jewish Year


Sealed on Yom Kippur

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A fascinating overview of Yom Kippur, which explains
how to maximize the spiritual potential of the Day

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Questions and Anwers on Yom Kippur

By Rabbi Eliezer Melamed

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Settling the Land is the Way to Reveal G-d’s Kingdom

But there are also halakhic questions that need answers before the Fast

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Accepting God’s Kingdom through Settling the Land

At the beginning of the year, we should return and connect to the most important and primary foundations in our lives – and paramount to all is remembering who are we, what our life is all about, where we came from, where we are going, and the great mission that has been assigned to us. Therefore, first and foremost, we once again accept upon ourselves God’s kingdom.

Correspondingly, in last week’s column, we mentioned the outwardly discernible mitzvoth – for men, wearing ‘tzitziot’ (tassels) on the outside of one’s clothing, and a sizeable ‘kippa’; for women, modest clothing according to halakhah; and for all – responding ‘amen’ out loud, and respect for the ‘beit knesset’ (synagogue).

Some people resented my pointing out mitzvoth that not everyone from the National-Religious public always excels in. Nevertheless, it is precisely the mitzvoth which require strengthening that need to be mentioned.

On the other hand, it is important to add that in general, the mitzvah that best expresses the acceptance of God’s Kingdom in the eyes of the entire world is the mitzvah of ‘yishuv Ha’Aretz’ (settling the Land), which our Sages said is equal to all the other mitzvoth (Sifri, Parshat ‘Re’eh’). And especially today, when many countries in the world accuse us, claiming: ‘You are bandits! You conquered the Arab’s land’, and demand we retreat from the Inheritance of our forefathers, but nonetheless, we stand in opposition to all of them, continuing to settle the Land of Israel, as the Word of God in the Torah and the Prophets.

The Need to Fight for the Land – Revealing God’s Kingdom

In fact, it can and should be argued that, historically speaking, our Rights to the Land of Israel are Superior, because the Arabs themselves conquered the Land some two thousand years after us, turned it into wilderness, and never had an independent state here. In any event, the most basic reply is that of Rabbi Yitzchak, as brought down by Rashi in his first commentary on the Torah:

“The entire world belongs to God. He created it and He has distributed portions of it in accordance with His Plan. Just as He exercised His Authority in granting the Land of Canaan to the seven nations, He exercised that Authority in granting the Holy Land to us” as it is written: “God revealed to His people His glorious creation so that they could receive their rightful Inheritance from the nations of the earth” (Psalms 111:6).

It is similarly explained in the Midrash:

“God said to Israel: I could have created a new land for you, but in order to show you My Strength, I slay your enemies before you, and give you their Land, to fulfill what is written: “God revealed to His People His glorious Creation so that they could receive their rightful Inheritance from the nations of the earth” (Bamidbar Rabba 23:12).

For only in this way will the world be redeemed from all its physical and moral woes. Despite all human attempts to prevent wars and quarrels, hatred and competition, vices still prevail, and humanity fails to be saved from the iniquities of human nature. Only by clinging to the Will of God can the world elevate itself from its small-mindedness, and be redeemed from its misery.

Therefore, everyone must be aware that we have returned to the Land of Israel as God commanded, to reveal goodness and truth to the world. And, lo and behold, after all attempts, it turns out that this is the most convincing reply for the majority of people in the world.

Expansion of the Settlements

Following my article two weeks ago, in which I wrote that our main challenge is to expand Jewish settlement extensively in Judea and Samaria, I received a response from my friend, Rabbi Ya’ir Hiller, expressing his concern about the insufficient rate of growth in the settlements.

Seeing as this is a timely encouragement for the Ten Days of Repentance as well, I present part of his letter: “…The practical objective is to do what you have done on Har Bracha: to build densely populated, high-story buildings, enabling many young couples who cannot find relief from the insane housing prices everywhere, to rent or purchase.

“In my opinion, you should join forces with other public representatives, directly contacting additional local councils, and convince them and their residents about the necessity of the issue for all of Am Yisrael, not to be satisfied building expensive villas for the wealthy alone, but allocate land in every community for cheaper construction, even if this brings to the gates of their communities young families and not affluent ones. This move will solidify the settlements, especially in the outlying areas, and also bring relief to the housing shortage in the greater Tel-Aviv region.”

Indeed, this entreaty is an appropriate one, and hence, I have decided to publish it here. Thank God, for a number of years, residents of Har Bracha have been inspiring other communities to build densely, or at the very least, to build more modestly then in the past. In recent months, some residents have even started a construction company for this purpose, and we hope to hear good news from them soon.

Fast of Yom Kippur

Making Marriages on Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is an able day for prayers and thoughts about making a good match, for oneself, or for his children. On the face of it, a person might think: “Is it fitting on this holy and awesome Day to contemplate such seemingly low matters between husband and wife?” But this is what our Sages said in the Mishna:

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said, There were no holidays for Israel as the fifteenth of Av and as Yom Kippur, for on them the daughters of Jerusalem go forth in borrowed white garments, so as not to embarrass whoever does not have… And the daughters of Jerusalem go forth and dance in the vineyard. And what would they say? “Young man, lift up your eyes and see, what you choose for yourself. Do not set your eyes on beauty, set your eyes on the family: ‘Grace is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman that fears the L-rd, she shall be praised’ (Prov. 31:30), and it says, ‘Give her the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates’ (Mishna Ta’anit 4:8).

This was the custom when the Temple was still standing and the ‘Shechinah’ (Divine Presence) rested on Israel and the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies on Yom Kippur; at that time, Israel could engage in matchmaking in holiness. But today when the Holy Temple is destroyed, we are required to significantly increase our prayers, and the ‘Shechinah’ is not revealed within us; consequently, we can not actually engage in matchmaking on Yom Kippur. Nevertheless, on this Holy Day, it is fitting to pray and contemplate on this important issue.

In particular, a person who has a lot of doubts regarding marriage, and is influenced by external considerations connected to his bad character traits which he has not yet properly corrected, can find the path to discover his match, owing to the holiness of the day.

Restoring ‘Shalom Bayit’

While Yom Kippur is effective in finding a match, it can also be helpful in restoring peace and love between married couples. For sometimes, as a result of failing to remember the Divine destiny of the marriage covenant, difficulties develop between husband and wife causing division. But by means of the Great Repentance of Yom Kippur, they can restore the love and joy between them.

As Rabbi Akiva said: “When husband and wife are worthy, the Shechinah abides with them; when they are not worthy fire consumes them” (Sotah 17a). Rashi explains that God placed His name between them – the Hebrew letter ‘yud’ in the word ‘ish’ (man), and ‘heh’ in the word ‘isha’ (woman) [and without God’s Name, the remaining letters ‘aleph’ and ‘shin’ spell the word ‘esh’, or fire].

Many people make the mistake, thinking that by connecting to learning Torah and performing mitzvoth, love between the couple will be impaired. The truth is the exact opposite – the more they are genuinely connected to religious matters, later on, they will be able to increase happiness and joy between them.

On Yom Kippur it is forbidden for a husband to touch his wife even with his finger (Shulchan Aruch, 615:1), yet, as a result of the holiness and meaningful repentance, they will be able to increasingly deepen their relationship.

Wearing Insoles on Yom Kippur

Q: As all are aware, it is forbidden to wear leather shoes or sandals on Yom Kippur. My question is, what is the halakhah for someone who needs to wear insoles in his shoes, and without them, his feet hurt him extremely, but the insoles are covered with leather?

A: Some halakhic authorities are lenient in this matter, permitting a person who suffers greatly without his insoles, which happen to be covered with leather, to place them in his cloth or rubber shoes, since they are not considered part of the shoe, and it is similar to a person standing on a cushion made out of leather, which is permitted (Rema, 614:2). Additionally, since he suffers greatly, he is in the same category as a person who has to walk in mud, who is permitted to wear shoes (Chelek Yaacov, Vol. 2: 83). One who desires may rely on this opinion.

When purchasing insoles, a person who wishes to ‘l’hader’ (enhance the mitzvah), should ask for insoles without leather, and thus be able to use them on Yom Kippur without concern.

Does a Migraine Sufferer Have to Fast?

Q: Is a person who has migraines, and has suffered several times from an onset of acute headaches as a result of fasting, obligated to fast on Yom Kippur and other fast days?

A: The general rule is that a sick person is exempt from the minor fasts, and even Tisha B’Av. Not only that – even one who as a result of the Fast is liable to become sick and fall ill, is exempt from fasting. Therefore, someone who suffers from migraines, even if at the beginning of the Fast he does not suffer, but knows that as a result of the fast a migraine headache is liable to be triggered, is exempt from the minor fasts and Tisha B’Av.

However, regarding the Fast of Yom Kippur, where even a person who is ill must also fast, one suffering from migraine headaches is obligated to Fast as well – even if it is a strong migraine, ‘kol v’chomer’ (all the more so) in a situation where he is not yet suffering, but rather, the Fast is likely to cause the onset of a migraine headache. And even eating a little at a time, less than a ‘shiur’ [one who eats on Yom Kippur the measurement of a large date is guilty] is forbidden for an ill person, since even eating a little on Yom Kippur is a Torah prohibition.

Additionally, it is worthy to note that in most cases, there are medications, in the form of a suppository or spray, which prevent the onset of migraines until after the Fast.

However, there are rare instances where migraines can cause a stroke, in which case there is a ‘chashash sakanat nefashot’ (a possible life-threatening situation), and in any event, such an ill person is exempt from fasting on Yom Kippur.  This is under three conditions:

  1. He has been diagnosed that fasting causes his migraines.
  2. The migraine appears after an aura (a perceptual disturbance experienced by some migraine sufferers before a migraine headache), and the aura lasts for over an hour.
  3. No medications (such as suppositories or sprays) can prevent the onset of the migraine. (This halakhah was written with the assistance of Dr. Rafi Kayam, and in accordance to the opinion of Dr. Rachel Herring, an expert in this field).

It should be added that, when it comes to the type of migraine where ‘sakanat nefashot’ is involved, seeing as the ill person does not need to eat a lot at one time in order to prevent the onset, he must eat a little at a time – less than a ‘shiur’ – for as long as he eats less than a ‘shiur’, he is not considered as having broken the Fast completely.

Using Deodorant

Q: Is it permissible to use deodorant on Yom Kippur to remove bad odor?

A: One of the five unique prohibitions on Yom Kippur is the prohibition of ‘sicha’ (anointing oneself with perfumes or lotions), which includes the prohibition of anointing even a tiny part of the body with oil or cream, and also the prohibition of using cosmetic products such as powders and oils to beautify one’s skin, or for a pleasant scent (Shulchan Aruch, 614:1).

Anointing in order to remove a bad odor is also prohibited, and in this manner, the prohibition of ‘sicha’ is different from the prohibition of ‘richitza’ (bathing), because regarding ‘richitza’, if one’s clear intention is to remove dirt – washing is permitted. Nevertheless, regarding ‘sicha’, since it is mainly intended for pleasure, even when one’s intention is to remove a bad odor, it is prohibited.

However, if after changing a baby’s diaper a bad smell remains on one’s hands, it is permitted to wash one’s hands with liquid soap, because liquid soap is not considered a cream or oil.

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Source: Arutz7

HaShem’s Sword of Vengeance and the Vengeance of the Covenant


What is Spiritually Behind the Current Ordeal of Israel

David and Goliath

It Is NOT The Physically Stronger Who Wins

Iran – To strike or not to strike?

  • According to the media, not only is it a race of time, but time is running out.
  • According to the media, Israel’s Prime Minister and Defense Minister are in the final stages of planning an attack on Iran.
  • According to the media, the President of the United States and his Cabinet are doing everything in their power to discourage, sabotage and leak out Israel’s plans.

Either way, don’t be upset. The media and the politicians on both sides of the ocean don’t decide.

Each passing day brings Iran closer to a nuclear warhead. Only the blind and the naive would think otherwise. Despite international sanctions, the Iranian centrifuges are working 24/7 purifying uranium and producing nuclear weapons-grade fuel.

Lately, one after the other, senior deceiving American government officials such as the evil US Secretary of State and the wicked US Secretary of Defense have visited Israel, each carrying the same message: “Don’t be naughty, you mischievous Israelis! You may certainly not carry out a preemptive strike against the Iranian nuclear reactors!”  To which our docile  leaders, tamed in American schools, answer with their well-known bravado, “We won’t leave our fate in the hands of others. We’ll do what we need to do when we need to do.”

We certainly agree with the above statement, but our references aren’t the same as theirs. We don’t leave our fate in the hand of “others” – in other words, other gods. We leave our fate in the Hand of HaShem.

With all the hype in the media, people are frantic. They hear Iran day and night. Syria too is up for grabs, and no one knows in whose hands hundreds of tons of chemical mass-destructive weapons will fall. Then there’s Hizballah, Iran’s armed-to-the-gills proxy right on our border too. Terror is on the rise in lawless Sinai. What will be?  Rabbi Shalom Arush,  was asked that question.

In front of recent events, especially the horror stories of breaches of holiness in the religious community, whic have taken a toll on his health Rav Shalom brushed aside the USA, Iran, and all of our other so-called friends and enemies with one backhand gesture. “They don’t decide our fate,” he said hoarsely.  He had tears in his eyes, his voice was quivering, and he was obviously trying to restrain himself from crying. Rav Shalom was seeing a very dark cloud on the spiritual horizon.

He then quoted the Torah:

Leviticus 26:25
And I will bring upon you the Sword that avenges the vengeance of Covenant.

Rav Shalom then became as fierce as a lion:

“When will people begin to realize that the entire purpose of Torah and mitzvoth is to bring a person to a state of holiness, so he or she can be a worthy vessel for the Divine Presence. But everyone must know: if they eat Kosher BaDatz, keep Shabbat with stringencies and have long beards – yet they think that their libido is a big mitzvah and their hearts are far from holiness – then they have done nothing! They’ve completely missed the point of Torah observance.”

Not only have they missed the point, but they aid and abet the enemy. How?

Rav Shalom quoted Torah and mentioned “the Sword that avenges the vengeance of Covenant“. HaShem incorporated a hard-fast law of cause-and-effect in the fiber of creation: if the Jewish people shall live their lives in holiness, they shall be encompassed within the glorious “clouds of Divine Presence;” they shall lack nothing and shall enjoy every single blessing in life, both material and spiritual. Not only that, Hashem Himself shall dwell in their midst, so no evil can befall them.

But, if on the other hand, Heaven forbid, the Jewish people forsake the Path of Holiness, succumbing to temptations of the mind and body, they shall suffer the consequences of the breach in Brit, the Holy Covenant. Any breach in Covenant produces a negative spiritual force known as “Vengeance of Covenant”.  The Vengeance of Covenant is the Force that creates a Sword of Vengeance, the same way that nuclear fuel is the power source of an atomic weapon.  Are you beginning to understand?

The spiritual roots of the Iranian nuclear weapons, the “Sword of Vengeance” that threatens us today, are all the breaches of holiness within the Torah-observant community. Maybe you think that’s not fair. “What about the seculars?” you want to ask.

Hashem expects much more from the observant community than He does from the seculars, who grew up in utter ignorance of Torah and mitzvoth.

People are afraid to be called names. One “average” religious man says, “If I go around closing my eyes, people will think I’m insane.”

Rav Shalom answers, “If you open your eyes, especially to unfiltered web and to Facebook, you will be insane.”

A so-called “Orthodox” woman says (wearing her long Euro-Kastem $1,600 wig and her long but quite-tight satin dress that accents every curve), “Do you expect me to dress like a yachna (Yiddish for ‘old hag’)? I wouldn’t be caught dead like that!”

Hey lady, if you continue dressing the way you do, you are creating the Sword which will “catch you dead.”

So maybe you’re asking, “What can I do if the whole world is off its rocker and I guard my eyes?” Or, “What can I do if all the women are ‘in style’ and I dress like ‘Little House on the Prairie’?” Rav Shalom that you’re doing a lot – you just might save the Jewish people.

When the Jews arrived at the Red Sea, with the Egyptian Army in hot pursuit from behind and the sea in front, there was an argument in the Heavenly Court if the Jews were worthy of being saved or not. One man’s dedication – Nachshon ben Aminadav who jumped into the water – tipped the scales in the Jews’ favor and the sea split. This is what Rebbe Nachman of Breslev calls azut d’kedusha, or “boldness for holiness.”

Rav Shalom says that azut d’kedusha is the only weapon which can defeat the sword of our enemies, conventional or otherwise.

So it’s not our enemies or our allies that determine our fate; they don’t decide. Our determination in strengthening personal holiness – guarding eyes for men and modesty for women – is the force that will determine which way the chips fall. There’s little time left, so let’s get to work. Personal holiness is our undisputable and irrefutable deed to the entire holy Land of Israel. The wicked Bilaam knew that Israel was invincible as long as it preserved its holiness. That’s why he tempted our people with the daughters of Midian; 24,000 Jews who dropped their guard died in the aftermath. Let’s not let that or anything like it happen ever again.

With our strengthened personal holiness, let Tehran worry; here we will sleep like babies, for The Guardian of Israel shall never slumber. G-d bless always.

Expert On Genocides Warns He Sees Iran On The Path To Commit One Against Israel


Unlike Hurricanes, Says the World Expert, Genocides Are Predictable.
And Iran IS Following the Pattern of Committing a Genocide!

Gregory Stanton, Founder of Genocide Watch,
says Iran has taken 6 of the 8 steps to commit Genocide.
But it’s NOT Late to Follow Canada’s Preventative Lead.

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Genocide is neither linear nor “inexorable.” It is, rather, predictable and preventable, so long as you recognize the universal signs. And Iran, in its language and action, has taken six of the eight steps on the path to genocide, according to Dr. Gregory Stanton, the world’s foremost  expert on the matter.

Stanton, the founder and director of Genocide Watch, the world’s first organization to deal exclusively with this issue, and the author of an historic two-page paper on the nature of genocide, spoke at the Hebrew University medical school last week. He called for an international campaign to abolish the recurring crime of genocide and for the world to take action, as Canada has, to ostracize Iran and curb its genocidal intent.

Talk of genocide, Stanton said — of removing a cancer or crushing a cockroach — is never just talk. “One of the best predictors of genocide is incitement to genocide,” he said, “and I believe that is exactly what Iran is doing today.”

Genocide Watch founder and director Greg Stanton

Genocide Watch founder and director Greg Stanton delivering a lecture at the Hebrew University’s medical school

Encouraging genocide is a crime. The UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide was signed in 1948 and fathered by Raphael Lemkin, a Jewish Polish lawyer who studied the genocide of the Armenians and invented the term in 1943 – “genos” meaning race or people and “cide” to kill. The Convention states that incitement “with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group” is illegal.

Late last week, on precisely those grounds, Canada severed its ties with Iran. John Baird, the minister of foreign affairs, announced that the Iranian regime “engages in racist anti-Semitic rhetoric and incitement to genocide.”

He gave Iranian diplomats five days to leave the country.

Stanton and Dr. Elihu Richter, a professor emeritus at the Hebrew University’s medical school and the founder of the Jerusalem Center for Genocide Prevention, both hailed the decision.

Richter called it “mighty” and said that the Canadian declaration “sets a powerful precedent for intervening to prevent genocide and genocidal terror by going at the early predictive causes and catalysts, rather than waiting for the body count.”

The two are seeking to drag Iran before the International Court of Justice in The Hague, where state actors can prosecute one another. Neither the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor the Prime Minister’s Office could confirm whether Israel had encouraged Canada to file charges against Iran for incitement to genocide.

The Predictable Pattern

Recognizing the early signs, spotlighting them and prosecuting those encouraging the killings are some of the ways to prevent a genocide. Ignoring them, dismissing them as diabolical rhetoric or as a tactic meant to advance a different goal, is to enable the perpetrators, Stanton said.

Raphael Lemkin, top row on the right, with some of the first state representatives to sign the Convention for the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons  CC-BY-SA)

Often, genocide goes unrecognized. In the opening slide of Stanton’s lecture three perplexed diplomats, clutching attaché cases that label them as representing the EU, the US and the UN, look around at a patch of desert, Darfur, that is stained with the bodies of the dead.  “Well…” says one; “Genocide, genocide…” says another; “Difficult question…” says the third.

Over the years Stanton realized that all genocides follow eight stages. They are, in this order: classification, symbolization, dehumanization, organization, polarization, preparation, extermination and denial.  He said:

Iran has classified and symbolized Israel through exclusionary ideology and hate speech; dehumanized it – “overcoming the normal human revulsion against murder” — by portraying the potential victims as a “cancer” in need of eradication; organized fanatical militias (the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps); polarized the society by repressing dissent and arresting moderates;  prepared for the killing by denying a past genocide and by constructing weapons of mass destruction; and, through global terrorism, even begun the seventh of his eight stages: extermination.

Genocide

Places, like this church in Rwanda, could have been safe havens for the Tutsi people who sought shelter in them, but in the weeks leading up to the genocide, the international so-called “peacekeepers” were purposefully withdrawn, and 800,000 innocent people were massacred

In the past century alone there have been 55 genocides, leaving 70 million people dead, Stanton said. The Armenians, the Jews and the Tutsi of Rwanda were the rare examples of one group’s campaign to destroy another group in its entirety, he said; more often, the case is that one group seeks to partially eradicate another– perhaps the educated classes or those living in a certain geographic region. For instance, in 1971, Pakistani forces killed somewhere between 300,000 and three million Bangladeshis. They did not seek to annihilate all Hindus in what was then known as East Pakistan, but the crime, Stanton said, must be considered a genocide.

The Call to Service

Stanton, a small-town Illinois native and the son of a Presbyterian pastor, realized he had to devote his life to the prevention of genocide in 1981, while sitting in the office of a Yale psychiatrist.

A graduate of the Harvard Divinity School with a PhD in cultural anthropology from the University of Chicago, he was in his second year at Yale Law School, recently back from a year in Cambodia, where he had worked for the Church World Service, bringing relief to the victims of the Khmer Rouge. He and his wife had adopted a daughter there and he should have been happy, he said, but instead he had slipped into a deep depression. His wife insisted he see a psychiatrist, who asked what was bothering him. He told of the mass graves and the survivor testimonies and the little corpse in the tattered Mickey Mouse t-shirt.

The doctor told him that if he weren’t depressed there would be something wrong with him. The doctor added that he, like many others who have studied depression, feel it is a form of repressed anger. “Then he looked at me and said: ‘What are you angry about?’” Stanton recalled.

Stanton’s response: the fact that the Khmer Rouge had organized and perpetrated the killing of 1.7 million Cambodians and still remained in power.

From that moment on the prevention of genocide became his life’s work. He founded the Cambodia Genocide Project and spent decades pushing for the indictment of those responsible. He helped establish the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and was awarded the American Foreign Service Association’s W. Averell Harriman Award for “intellectual courage and creative accomplishment.”

Nonetheless, in the late nineties, he was fired from the State Department. His supervisor, frustrated with his efforts to document what he called “the appalling cowardice” of the US State Department in April 1994 — when it voted to withdraw all UNAMIR peacekeepers in Rwanda in the face of a mounting genocide — wrote the type of evaluation that he knew would eventually terminate his career. “Greg apparently does not understand that the State Department is a hierarchical organization,” he quoted, with obvious pleasure, during the lecture.

Before leaving the State Department, he wrote the two-page paper that is at the heart of his presentation and work.

Since then, Stanton, a descendant of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Henry Brewster Stanton – a founder of the woman’s liberation movement and an abolitionist – has founded the International Campaign to End Genocide.  It rests on two fundamental principles:  that genocide is “unlike a hurricane” and therefore predictable, and that the phenomenon has become wretchedly common.

“It’s like slavery,” he said, “a giant elephant in the room that everyone is ignoring.”

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Source: TimesOfIsrael

What You Will Need If Israel Is Attacked — Things To Have, And Do, In Case Of War


What to Have in Times of War or a Natural Disaster

A List of Emergency Items and Recommendations

What to do in Case of a Major War

46 Practical Recommendations that Could Save your Life
in Case of a Major War or a Natural Disaster

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Below is a list of emergency items, as well as ideas, of what to have packed in case of a quick escape in times of an emergency — whether it is a war or a natural disaster.

By now, lots of Israelis have already received their gas masks in case of a major war with Iran.  But what else will we need to prepare for?  And what does everyone need to have in order to survive as painlessly as possible such an eventuality?  What do we need to know and have into account once the moment arrives.

It is recommended that all Israeli citizens collect immediately the following items in order to prepare for an expected regional war within the next few, days, weeks or months.

Surprise Golan DrillOn the Verge of War

Have into account that these items need to be bought and packed BEFORE the hostilities begin.  Use your discretion but remember that once the war starts you might not have the time, nor the possibility, to buy and/or pack them.  Remember that in the midst of panic and confusion many things can be forgotten.  Also, once hostilities begin, stores might not be open for you to buy anything — and who knows for how long shall they be closed — not to mention that you might not be able to leave your shelter.  So, don’t leave for tomorrow what should be done today.  Don’t lament on that day for not having heeded this good recommendations today.

All items should be secured in back packs or carrying cases that can be easily transported, and they should be stored in a very accessible location ready for evacuation to a shelter. Recommended quantities and other special instructions are also posted below.

Here is the list to have packed:

  1. One Gas Mask per person.  Learn how to wear it properly ahead of time.  (See the link below).
  2. Food.  You should pack 2 cans of tuna, 2 granola bars and 1 small chocolate bar per person, per day, enough to last between two and four weeks.
  3. Water.  You should pack 1.5 liters per person, per day, enough to last between two and four weeks.
  4. One month worth of the prescription medicines which you need to use on a regular basis.
  5. First Aid Kit.  A reasonable amount of bandages, non-stick gauze, band-aids, antibiotic cream, iodine solution, cotton swabs, pain medication, anti-anxiety pills, anti-diarrhea tablets, etc.  (Consult a pharmacist for a complete list).
  6. One sweater per person for in case of cold
  7. One small blanket per person for in case of cold.
  8. One man-sized sheet of plastic for in case of rain
  9. At least one all-weather Flashlight.
  10. One battery-powered multi-band Radio, or a hand crank radio.
  11. Spare Batteries for the radio and flashlight(s).
  12. One well-protected knife.
  13. A coil of Rope approximately 30 meters (~90 feet) long.
  14. Spare socks and underwear.
  15. A few handkerchiefs.  They will become very useful not only for blowing your nose, but for tourniquets, etc.
  16. A map of your city and country
  17. Have all your main documents wrapped in plastic in the back pack.
  18. And last, but certainly not least, a small Bible, a personal Sidur and your Tephillim (of course, if you are a man).

Things to do BEFORE  a major war:

  1. As already said, have everything bought and ready to be easily picked up and go to a shelter or escape out of your usual environment.
  2. When the war is imminent, keep every night your clothing and shoes very close to you. Keep then organized in a ready way.  Of course, keep also handy your back pack with the items recommended above.
  3. Keep your wallet, teudah zehut, keys and at least one handkerchief inside their pockets.  Also, your cellphone should be left attached to the belt.  This way you shall be able to be ready to leave in a very short time.
  4. Have in your wallet all your credit cards and a certain amount of cash just for such an emergency.
  5. Have written in a paper inside your wallet the main telephone numbers of your relatives and friends.
  6. Clean and get ready your main miklat (shelter).  You might have to spend several weeks in it.  Do not add unnecessary unconformability to an already scary and difficult situation.
  7. Make a careful plan of escape with different realistic alternatives.  Make an inventory of all the shelters and possible routes of escape in your vicinity.
  8. Even if painful, be mentally and emotionally prepared by considering the various situations and events that could occur to you and your family during a major war; and imagine how you would face them — even if you remain alone.  Notice that this may save your life, or someone in your family’s.
  9. Follow attentively the news BEFORE the military conflict starts.  Don’t be caught off guard.
  10. Keep you family and friends up to-date on how the situation develops.  Many people go in denial previous to a war and pretend that nothing is about to happen, and so they do not follow the news.  This could be very costly for them.
  11. Pray to HaShem, mend any broken fences with Him, and ask Him to be your main Protector and Shield in the time when you need it most.  Pray a lot and live as He wants you to live, so you should not have to die; but even if you do, dying with Him is a Gate to an Eternal and Wonderful Life.

 These are some of the things that you should do once the military conflict starts:

  1.  Do not panic.  Do not react thoughtlessly.  Panic can kill as many people as some missiles.  The best countermeasure against panic is a genuine faith that our lives are in the Care of HaShem.  The second one is to be mentally, emotionally and spiritually prepared for any disaster.  One of the duties of every regular citizen is to keep calm and in control of himself.
  2. Be alert.  Keep an ear on your radio and the other on your environment.  One of the most scary things in a war is the sounds it produces; but all the sounds you hear can give you lots of vital information, all of which you definitely need.
  3. Be disciplined.  Follow the indications that the Army and the Home Front shall from time to time announce to the civilian population.  Do not try to be a rebellious Lone Ranger.
  4. React deliberately.  The greater the danger, the more deliberate you need to react.  This is why it is so important that you think and plan ahead of time different responses to different eventualities.
  5. Be courageous.  Overcome the natural fear that everyone feels in a war by acting according to the needs of the moment and according to your reason and not your emotions.  Remember this formula:
    Reason + Responsibility = Courage
  6. Do not be overconfident.  It is a great foolishness to show off valor, or even unnecessarily play the hero when not necessary.  At war, a display of personal valor is only for the moments when necessity truly demands it.  You will not only endanger yourself but other people too, most of all your family who shall have to divert their attention from important things on account of your foolishness.
  7. Be patient.  Whether waiting for missiles to fall during a siren alarm, or when bombing elongates too much, or for the whole war to end: do not despair.  Every battle and every war comes to an end, but not before it is due.  Desperation can only accelerate our own demise and that of those around us.
  8. Be civil.  You might have to spend quite some time in a shelter with strangers who might, or not, react like you and who might or not have your same habits.  Remember that fear — and everyone feels it at war — causes flares of anger.  This shall happen to you as much as to them.  Do not allow quarrels and little wars added to the one already going on.  Anger and arguments only block alertness and reasoning, two elements that are vital for survival in any war.
  9. Lay low.  Do not make unnecessary noise — most of all when the enemy is close. But, of course, I bet you knew that.  Do not attract unnecessarily the attention of soldiers and officials who are concentrated doing their best to protect you.
  10. Be conservative.  I don’t mean politically, although I am.  Conserve resources: water, food, medicines, bandages, etc.  You do not know how long the state of war will last.  Only use what is strictly necessary to keep alive, not to satisfy yourself — not even the children.  It’s better to feel bad than not to feel at all.
  11. Be wise.  When at war, it is an absolute must to use your reason and ignore your emotions as much as possible.  For civilians, war is about survival, not unnecessary comfortability.  It is about patriotism, not petty personal interests.  Try to understand the emotions, words and needs of other people; they might be even more afraid than you.  Understand that not everybody feels the same pain for the same loss or the same wound.  Don’t expect others to react as you would in front of the same event or situation.
  12. Be selfless.  Share what you have with others, but do not let them abuse you either.
  13. Be helpful.  Do what you can to sooth the pain of those around you who are hurting.  cooperate with the authorities in whatever way they ask you.  Calm the children around you — even if they are not yours.  Tell them soothing or interesting stories. Don’t let them see you are afraid or nervous; their sense of calm or anguish will come to a great extent from the adults around them, most of all their parents.
  14. Be careful.  Do not go out the shelter unnecessarily, even if it seems to be a period of calm.  If you unavoidably  need to, do it with much precaution, walking by the walls being careful with those that are about to collapse.  Do not go out if there are snippers!
  15. Be brave.  If you get wounded or, worse yet, one whom you love:  try not to scream as much as you can, keep calm, put a tourniquets if needed, or a bandage then go for help.  Remember, many times wounds that are very bloody and ugly are not necessarily life threatening.  Act soon but not precipitously, try to understand that sometimes help might take a little to arrive, screaming and despairing will not help at all, just the opposite.
  16. Pray.  Pray all the time, not only for your wellbeing for that of our soldiers and everybody else.  Do not be selfish so that your prayers be heard.
  17. Be trustful in HaShem.  Every adverse circumstance — as every good one too — offers us the opportunity to make positive or negative decisions.  One of them is to develop trust in the wonderful Character of our G-d.  We may not know our future for the next five seconds, but we can know — for sure — that He loves us and cares for us at all times and under all situations.  It is in that trust of his Character that we can call upon Him for his Help and Protection and be saved.  It’s His Promise, not mine.

For the important items, as well as ideas that were discussed on the show, listen to the program from the following link.  It was that program which gave me the idea of writing this much expanded version of it with my own recommendations.

Click here to listen:  ‘What to do in case of war’

Tamar Yonah speaks with a rescue and emergency expert from the Israel Aid Mission as he gives you a list of essentials to pack and have on store, to help save you and your family in times of trouble — wherever you are in the world.

Check out the Israel Aid Mission Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/israelaidmission

Also, Tamar is joined by former Islamic terrorist, Walid Shoebat, where they discuss the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attack on the USA.  Has justice been meted out to the perpetrators?  What role did Saudi Arabia play in the planning and funding of the attack, and why have many of them not been prosecuted?

This IS the Future As Foretold by HaShem. Prepare for It WITH Him, or Deal with It on Your Own


Redemption Will Be Wonderful … But Not Easy

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Third Jewish Temple in Jerusalem

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There are no Prophets these days, but we surely can know the future. What our Holy Prophets predicted in the old days, and what our sages later on extracted from their divinely inspired Prophecies, added to that the instantaneous access that we have to detailed worldwide information, thanks to the Internet, and we have a very good idea of what is coming our way in the not so distant future.  So, I might not be a Prophet, but I am an educated speculator with a pretty decent record of accuracy in my predictions.  Notwithstanding, this post is not about my or others speculations, this post is strictly about what HaShem revealed by means of those ancient Prophets of ours; because of this we can rest assured that these Predictions are 100% accurate.

Having said that, I must remark that any Prophecy – all these! – could be easily avoided if a great part of humans, mainly Jews, would quit being such a bunch of spiritual retards and make Tshuvah. Its is the lack of Emunah and Ahavah in the Jewish soul that is creating all the commotions we see all around us these days.  Yes, we Jews are collectively guilty of the pathetic and dangerous state in which the entire world is found nowadays.  It is ignorant Jews, unloving Jews, assimilated Jews, materialistic Jews, unobservant Jews, heretical Jews, idolatrous Jews, skeptical Jews, atheist Jews, immoral Jews, perverted Jews, and rebellious Jews who are bringing upon Am Yisrael and the whole world all the current calamities and the coming worldwide cataclysm. We, Jews, are the Chosen People indeed; but we were not Chosen to be better than the rest of nations, or just to feel good about ourselves because of the honor bestowed upon ourselves when we were the lowliest of nations.  No, we were Chosen to bring the Light of HaShem to the world, to make His Light available to those very nations that, when we do not illuminate them with the Teachings and Mitzvot of Torah, and with our example of how to live those Divine Concepts, then they turn against us and try to extirpate us from the face of the Earth.

Let’s take for instance our experience in America.  No other country – not even Spain before the cruel and anti-Semitic Catholic Kings – has given us so much freedom and opportunities to thrive at any level.  And what did we do there?  Merely grow fatly rich and powerful.  We impacted its culture with some good art and sciences, but we destroyed it with Hollywood and Wall Street.  Is any of that, good or bad. the Light that HaShem wanted us to shed on a arrogant and forceful country that thinks that Light is what gold reflects?  We did not bring the Light of HaShem to America; what we did was to be overtaken by its Darkness.  We assimilated to the point of non-recognition, we intermarried to the point of impending absorption, we became hard and vain, and most grew farther and farther from HaShem and His Light.

Yes, many American Jews love Israel, but they execrate the idea of living here because it doesn’t give so many opportunities to grow financially and socially.  On the other hand, Israelis are brusque and nervous!  And why live in the desert city of Be’er Sheva (like me), when you can live in “sunny” Florida (as I did)?  Just this kind of cogitation tells a lot about the Darkness that has been infused into the Jewish soul in America.  I know that many people will cry “Crazy!” on account of what I’m going to now declare:  America is the country that has done the greatest damage to the Jewish People in our millenarian history.  No other country has EVER killed so many Jews – ever! – not even Hitler’s Germany.  Countless millions of precious Jewish souls have perished in the subtle American Spiritual Holocaust.  What is worse that someone – like an Arab – kills our body, or that someone else, nice and educated,  kills our soul?  If you do not understand the question is because you are already very dead.

Torah is Life, the Life of the Jewish People; but it is a spiritual Life to be reflected for the benefit of the Goyim, whom the Heavenly King, blessed be His Name, also loves.  Again, this is the Reason why He Chose us in the first place.  Oy!  But we occupied ourselves in America in becoming self-sufficient, highly educated, rich; in other words we became –  horrors of horrors – Americans!  I remember one day when I was still in America, that I asked a dear Rabbi in my area, why would he not make Aliyah with his family.  Suddenly, his eyes went really big as he looked at me with a great perplexity in his face, then he exclaimed in his sincere amazement:  “Why would I?  I am an American!  I’m a retired officer of the US Navy!  I love Israel, but THIS is my country.”  Oy va voy!  I can’t even express how sad I felt for this dear, dear Rabbi.

When our goals in Galut are not those of HaShem for us, we slowly but surely will miss the purpose of our lives.  And it is right there that we lose, at least, part of our wonderful Jewish soul.  What do you think shall happen to the next generation?  This process is treasonous because our soul dies non-painfully … it dies while believing that now we are starting to live at long last.

In many countries where we went the same effect took place:  They received us for whatever reason, then we gratefully adjusted, then we assimilated partially and then completely, then we became powerful, and finally we were persecuted and killed wholesale – Egypt, Babylon, Spain, Poland and Gemany are just a few examples of this process.  Ah, but like our ancestors before now deceived American Jews say:  “Oh no, not here!  Here is really different.  You see, the times are different, and these people are indeed different.”  And while the conversation placidly goes on, the clouds of the Second Shoah are already starting to blacken the horizon.

Why can we not do it differently for once?  Why?  Simply put:  Because HaShem will not allow it to be any different.  The thing is that if we do not comply with and fulfill our Covenant responsibilities, He will surely call us back to our Jewish senses the very hard way.  Why so hard?  Because, if He was capable of such a thing, he must be sick and tired of explaining to us — over and over — the same Contract which is always unfulfilled on our side.  We need to make Tshuvah … and do for good, because this time around things are going nuclear!

Adam haRishon was advised in Gan Eden of what not to do.  One single, easy Commandment in reference to that fatal tree and he could not do it.  The consequences were most swift and tragic.  And we don’t learn from it.  Our fathers in the desert were advised, but they did not comply and … boom!  And since then ti has been like that on, and on, and on…  We have been advised, no Commanded, to be Light to the Goyim; but nooo, we love the Darkness of the Goyim more than the Light of HaShem.  And so we become Christians, and Bhuddists, and Darwinists, and Capitalists or Communists … and Idiotists of all sorts, but not Light to the nations.

So, enters the End of Days:

Yoel 3.1-21
1  “For behold, in those Days and at that Time, when I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem2  I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Yehoshaphat, and I will enter into Judgment with them there on account of My People, My Heritage, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations.  Also they have divided up My Land3  They have casted lots over My People; they have have given a boy as payment for a harlot; and they have sold a girl for wine, so that they may drink.
4  “Indeed, what have you to do with Me, Tyre and Sidon, and all the coasts of Philistia?  Will you retaliate against Me?  But if you retaliate against Me, I will return your retaliation upon your own head swiftly and speedily  5  because you have taken My Silver and My Gold, and you have carried My Prized Possessions into your temples.  6  Also the people of Judah and the people of Jerusalem you have sold to the Greeks, so that you may remove them far from their borders.  7  “Behold, I will raise them out of the place to which you have sold them, and I will return your retaliation upon your own head: 8 I will sell your sons and your daughters into the hand of the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans, to a people far off.  For the Lord has spoken.”
9 Proclaim this among the nations:  “Prepare for war!  Wake up the mighty men; let all the men of war draw near; let them come up.  10  Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears; let the weak say, ‘I am strong’.”
11  Assemble and come, all you nations, and gather together all around.  Cause Your Mighty Ones to go down there, Lord.   12  Let the nations be wakened, and come up to the Valley of Yehoshaphat because there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations.  13  Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down because the winepress is full, the vats overflow, because their wickedness is great.
14  Multitudes, multitudes in the Vale of Judgment since the Day of the Lord is near in the Vale of Judgment.
15  The sun and moon will grow dark, And the stars will diminish their brightness. 16  Also, the Lord will roar from Zion and He will utter His Voice from Jerusalem.  The Heavens and earth shall shake, but the Lord will be a Shelter for His People, and He will be the Strength of the Children of Israel.   17  So you shall know that I am the Lord your G-d, dwelling in Zion My Holy Mountain.  Then Jerusalem shall be Holy, and no aliens shall ever pass through her again.”
18  And it will come to pass in that Day that the mountains shall drip with new Wine, the hills shall flow with Milk, and all the brooks of Judah shall be flooded with Water.  A Fountain will flow from the House of the Lord and shall water the Valley of Acacias.
19 Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom a desolate wilderness, because of violence against the people of Judah, because they shed innocent blood in their Land;  20  but Judah shall abide forever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation, 21 because I will acquit them of the guilt of bloodshed — whom I had not acquitted –because the Lord dwells in Zion.”

Wakeup dummies!  It is clear that G-d is about to judge the Nations on account of their despicable and lethal actions against us, Jews.  This means that before they get Judged, Israel shall have to endure our Last Attack from all those nations … and it will not be easy!  In fact, it shall be our darkest hour, since it will take place just before the Light of HaShem finally illuminates and cleans not only us, but the whole world.  May we all be acceptable in His Sight.  May Moshiach come speedily bringing Geulah in our days.

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Shalom,

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Ya’akov

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Call On HaShem And He Will Be Gracious — Real Protection For The Time Of Great Need


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Yes, We Are Protected IF We Are Careful
In Keeping Our End Of The Covenant

Prophet Joel informs us that despite the perils that await the Jewish Nation, as well as the rest of the world, right before the Great Day of HaShem, there is a Path to Safety.

We are informed in Joel 3(5) that anyone who calls in the Name of HaShem will escape.  The Hebrew Words for this is והיה כּל אשׁר יקרא בּשׁם יקוק ימלט. But what does it mean to call in the Name of G-d?  If we examine these 7 Hebrew Words a little closer we see a great hint.  For the gematria of the first letter of these 7 Words add up to 59.  This number 59 is the same value as the word אחן, which means “I will be Gracious and show Favor“.

We are protected IF we are careful

G-d tells this to Moses in Exodus 33(19) after he requests of G-d that He show him His Glory, that is, His Ways. The entire verse states that HaShem shall show Favor when He chooses to show Favor, and shall show Mercy when He chooses to show Mercy.  But how does HaShem choose?  He doesn’t treat us based on some pre-determined fate that we have.  Everything that occurs in our lives is based on our individual actions.  So many think that we don’t have any free will if G-d knows what our actions, and thus our ultimate fate, will be.  Nothing can be further from the truth.

We have total free will to act in a pure, truthful, faithful manner with the G-d of the Universe and with our fellow man and woman.  We can love and fear G-d with total free will and thus grow closer to HaShem.  But remember, the closer we are to G-d, the greater responsibility we will have for our actions.  And G-d knows exactly what our actions, decisions, words, sincerity and true committment will be.  He knows the future.  He know what we will choose to do.  That is not an obstacle to our actions.  He simply knows every single act that we will choose in our lifetimes.  If two teams have to play a game, G-d knows who will win and who will lose.  No one else does.  And so the game still has to be played and both teams must try with all their skills to be victorious.  G-d observes and weighs each of our deeds, good and bad.  So often we are not aware of our misdeeds and wrong and hurtful words to each other.  We say to ourselves so often, “Oh that was just a joke.  I tried to be funny.”

If someone receives a gift from someone, we automically thank the donor either in writing or orally.  So wouldn’t it be logical that when G-d grants us a great day, a new job, nachas and joy from our children, and simply a day totally free of pain, discomfort and troubles that we should seek Hashem, and thank Him?  Say more to Him than just “Baruch Hashem, or thanks G-d.”  Thank Him like you would thank a donor for his gift.  If you thank G-d and call on Him when things go well, then He will listen to you when you call on Him when things are not going well.  A child away from his parents can keep calling on them when they need money and things.  But do they call their parents a while later when this money and things lead to success and happiness?  HaShem wants to hear from His children more than, “Give me, give me, or help me now.”  He wants to hear how thankful we are for all the good He has already given us.  He wants us to tell Him “good news.”  If we can do this then G-d will indeed be Gracious to us and show Favor when we call for help.

Source: Redemption5768