Friday, December 31, 2004

Have a fun and safe New Year's Eve!

But in the meantime... you can read the following informative articles...

Caroline Glick: A mature Israeli-US partnership
In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States and the global war on terror that quickly ensued, it is difficult to remember that the first challenge to American security that the Bush administration encountered came not from the Arabs but from the Chinese. Read more here. Or if that link doesn't work for you, the article is also here.

Daniel Pipes: Why is America upping the hundreds of million$ it already gives the ‘Palestinians’?
Arafat's successor is hell-bent on destroying Israel. Yasser Arafat died last month. This month, his death is prompting plans for a foreign aid bounty of $500 million to $1 billion a year for the Palestinians. Read the rest here.

IMRA (Independent Media Review Analysis) correction: Vatican takes Sri Lanka to task (NOT Israel) for their rejection of Israeli aid. This story should be read and correction understood. Check it out here.

Or you can read the following hopeful articles...

Palestinian couple helps Israeli honeymooners
A pair of Israeli newlyweds have described how a Palestinian couple came to their rescue during Thailand's tsunami disaster, paying for them to fly back home after they had lost all their cash. Read the rest of the article here.
INTERESTING NOTE: I originally saw this article in my newsletter, though they didn't have it on their site as yet. So I searched the net for it. I found different variations, with only one including this version of the couple saying they plan to stay in touch with the Palestinian couple who saved their lives -- something called the Palestine Chronicle. The ones who published the shortened article that left that part out? The Sydney Morning Herald, The Hindustan Times (India), The Peninsula On-line (Qatar) and Khaleej Times (I think it's based in the U.A.E.)

Elderly Sisters Start New Lives in Israel
JERUSALEM - Two German-born sisters in their 90s, both Nazi concentration camp survivors, began new lives Thursday by settling into an Israeli senior citizens home after spending more than half a century in the United States. Read the rest here.

Find more from the blogway here...

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Flights of Angels...

It is with a heavy heart that I send out condolences to the family of Helena Hufford-Zaslow. The 19-year-old daughter of Michael Zaslow -- the late legendary Emmy-award-winning star of Guiding Light -- and his wife Susan Hufford, passed away on Dec. 28th. I still can't believe it's been over six years since Michael passed away from ALS. My thoughts and prayers are with Helena's mom, Susan, and her sister, Marika, during this horribly sad time for them.

Find more from the blogway here...

Needing Something to Read?

Must-Read Articles

Relations between Arabs and Jews By Sarah Elshazly
Israeli Arabs have always yearned to be with other Arabs. The language, culture and just being with other Arabs was enough to get a tear in our eyes. It took me a total of 10 minutes to see what I was, or wasn't missing. When I came to the US and started meeting Arabs from the Arab world I was so taken aback.

Read the whole article on the wonderful Arabs for Israel Web site.

Sundance and Israeli films/ The Jerusalem Post
The Sundance Channel, a US cable network with more than 20 million subscribers, has acquired broadcast rights to 16 Israeli documentaries, which it will be showing during the coming year. Read the whole article here.

Must-Read Book

The Third Terrorist: The Middle East Connection to the Oklahoma City Bombing -- by Jayna Davis

(editorial review from Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols were not the lone conspirators in the Oklahoma City bombing—the attack that killed nearly 170 people in a few short seconds. They were part of a greater scheme, one which involved Islamic terrorists and at least one provable link to Iraq. This book, written by the relentless reporter who first broke the story of the Mideast connection, is filled with new revelations about the case and explains in full detail the complete, and so far untold, story behind the failed investigation—why the FBI closed the door, what further evidence exists to prove the Iraqi connection, why it has been ignored, and what makes it more relevant now than ever. Told with a gripping narrative style and rock-solid investigative journalism and vetted by men such as former CIA director James Woolsey, Davis’s piercing account is the first book to set the record straight about what really happened April 19, 1995.

Find more from the blogway here...

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

With Sadness Comes Wednesday...

I really hope to have an upbeat entry one day soon. But it won't be today.

In the midst of devastation and despair, Sri Lanka can't care enough about its lost, injured or dead citizens to allow help from Israel's military. That's right. Sri Lanka rejects Israel resuers. Instead of the 150 planned team, now a smaller contingent will be sent. They should ask Tehran's grieving families if rejecting Israel's help is worth it.



A friend of a friend, Nicole, is missing. Please pray for her. Our mutual friend had the following suggestion for those wishing to do something to help the victims/survivors:

You can make a donation to the non-profit organization called Direct Relief International (  They are a Santa Barbara based 501(c)3 organization that accepts private and corporate donations,  and is currently working with established organizations in the affected countries.  Thanks to their corporate partnerships, less than 1% of donations go to administrative costs. Among their numerous corporate partners are Abbott Labs, Bausch & Lomb, Fed-Ex, Merck, Mattell, Novartis, Pfizer & Schering Plough.  Fed Ex has even donated a 747 to ship supplies.  You can make a donation online. Any amount ($5, $18, $50, $1000, etc) would help and it is tax deductible.


The lights on Broadway are expected to be dimmed for one minute tonight to honor the passing of one of their own, Jerry Orbach, who died Tuesday night from prostate cancer. While he's mostly known today as Lennie Brisco on the original Law & Order TV series, Orbach performed in many hit Broadway musicals and even won a Tony. Film audiences will always love him as Baby's dad in the film, Dirty Dancing. To read more about his career, click here.

Find more from the blogway here...

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Before the thunder fries my computer...

The Tsunami/earthquake has now claimed what looks to be almost 60,000 lives, with the possibility of disease doubling that figure. There are stories out there about how the UN feels the US isn't doing enough (thanks to Gindy for the article link) which is pretty crappy of the UN to say but hey -- no surprise there, but where are the stories about all that Israel is doing? has devoted an alert to this -- you should definitely check it out.

Just read a great article from Frontpage Magazine (okay, stop hyperventilating if you're a democrat -- just check it out!) that was written by an Arab Israeli......all about the refugee crisis. It truly is a must-read for anyone who thinks they know the real story.

From the AP: Susan Sontag, a leading intellectual and activist of the past half century who introduced the concept of "camp" to mainstream culture and also influenced the way many thought about art, illness and photography, died Tuesday. She was 71.

Seems like only folks in Connecticut or Jerusalem care about Senator and former Presidential candidate Joe Lieberman's visit to the Middle East. You can read about it here.

Find more from the blogway here...

Monday, December 27, 2004

Monday Roundup

Unfortunately, it wasn't a Merry Christmas for everyone around the world.

Sadness fills my heart today as I send my condolences to everyone touched by the catastrophe that hit the 10 Southern Asian coastline countries over the weekend. How grotesquely frightening it must be to be in an earthquake of that size (I know the smaller ones are no picnic) and then to be confronted by a 30-foot wall of water that is a Tsunami. My heart goes out to them. Current death toll is put at 23,000 and rising.

Condolences also go out the fans, friends and family of NFL great Reggie White, who passed away from a massive heart attack at 43. He was at times controversial but he seemed to be on a genuine path to gain knowledge and I completely respect that. 43 is way too young to die. Read a fantastic article (I highly recommend that you check out the whole magazine site when you can) on this incredible athlete.

In other news (and let's face it, there's no good segue), congratulations to the Ukraine's Yushchenko for finally being able to get the clear victory he should have had last time. To survive poisoning is amazing enough. But to overcome everything else to finally be able to claim his rightful win is a fantastic triumph -- for him and for the good of world politics. Bravo!

Meet the Fockers set a record for the most money earned (44.7 million) over Xmas weekend. Good for them. I do wish Barbra and the bunch success -- I just wish they'd made a better movie.

Short Takes From Israel

(The Jerusalem Post -- -- which you need to register before being able to access entire stories, which I highly recommend)

  • Senator Joseph Lieberman to visit Israel Tuesday to meet with high ranking Israeli and Palestinian leaders.
  • Health Ministry sends medical mission to Thailand
  • Home Front Command preparing Asia mission

And always a must read at and updated weekly.....

Caroline Glick: Column One
Bigotry's Harvest
If the government goes through with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's plan to unilaterally withdraw, thereby ending the IDF's offensive operations in the area, how will such attacks be prevented?

Find more from the blogway here...

Friday, December 24, 2004

From Time to Time...

It is my hope that from time to time, I can use this blog to help make others aware of things they might not be hearing or reading about. You can use the "comments" section to alert me (and others) to the same.

OK, since writing my first entry about Tony Blair and his visit to the Palestinian territories, I have learned that while he did visit Arafat's grave, he simply nodded in respect and moved on, upsetting people there by not laying down a wreath. Eh. Okay. He also said that negotiations cannot begin until there is an end to terror. Better.

In other news, according to a poll taken by the Palestinian Center for Public Opinion (PCPO), more than half of the Palestinians support stopping the violence. That's something, and I feel it's important to acknowledge any kind of improvement.

And now a couple of items from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL):

Increase in Anti-Jewish Hate Crimes in LA County
The Hate Crimes Report released by the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations shows that Jews continue to be the most frequently targeted religious group, now accounting for 84 percent of religious-based hate crimes. Find out more by visiting here.

Media Watch
Incitement In Palestinian Textbooks Continues
Roger Avenstrup's argument, in the International Herald Tribune, that the textbooks being used in Palestinian classrooms are free of anti-Israel incitement is disingenuous. Find out more by visiting here. [UPDATE: While I got this alert recently, the URL seems to be down now; for more info on subject, see below]

They alerted us to the Avenstrup article too and offered a different one, written by Itamar Marcus, which takes on the above article. According to HR, Marcus "said those like Avenstrup 'are tragically enabling the Palestinian Authority to avoid necessary changes in its education system.' Marcus gives a number of examples of Palestinian schoolbook lessons that the Koran views the Jews as 'the enemy of God,' that Israel resides on Palestinians' 'stolen homeland,' and of an Islamic religious obligation to destroy the Jewish state." You can read Marcus's article here.

To check out this and other reports of media bias, I suggest you read the latest communication.

Find more from the blogway here...

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Meet The Fockers -- meets with disappointment

Don't worry -- no real spoilers about the movie in this review.

Few movies have I anticipated more than Meet The Fockers -- the sequel to the 2000 hit Meet the Parents. It could have been a contenda. After all, it had so many of the right ingredients.

1) The return to screen of La Streisand as Roz Focker (brilliant name!) -- Babs finally just acting and not directing herself. Not that I don't think she's a talented director -- I'd love to see her direct a movie she isn't in or like this, act in a movie she isn't directing. While Prince of Tides is one of my favorite movies of all time, The Mirror Has Two Faces was one of the worst. Seeing Barbra simply act was a ton of fun, and she is without a doubt the best thing about this movie.

2) The reunion of sorts of Blythe Danner and Babs. While they never shared an acting scene in Prince of Tides, Barbra did direct her. Their scenes are very cute. And anything with Blythe is made more wonderful.

3) Heavyweights like Robert DeNiro and Dustin Hoffman -- but Dustin was just so over-the-top and cringe-worthy. Towards the end, it felt like DeNiro was trying to match him.

Frankly, if there had been a camera on ME while I was watching this film, you'd have sworn I was seeing a horror flick. Often I had my hands up in front of my eyes to protect me from this movie. While there are genuine laugh out loud moments (Barbra's entrance evoking The Main Event was hysterical), they are far outweighed by the cringe-inducing discomfort and... blasphemy of all blasphemies for a movie -- boring scenes that populate this sequel. All in all, rent What's Up Doc? and you'll be a much more satisfied movie watcher.

Find more from the blogway here...

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

What was he thinking?

So. Tony Blair decided that during his trip to the Middle East, he would stop by Arafat's grave. Blair thinks Arafat deserves such high praise -- for one of the most powerful men in this world to honor him?!

Then again, why am I surprised. This is the same man who condemned the targeted assassination of Rantissi -- a super terrorist and leader of Hamas. This is the same man who indulges the myth of Palestinian centrality, saying that the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is the most critical situation in the world today. I'm sure this would come as a huge surprise to the victims of mass slaughter around the world, especially in the Sudan. It would be offensive to the overwhelming numbers dying in Africa from AIDS, from starvation, from every day disease. Why do we give Tony Blair so much credence? So he supported us in the war against Iraq -- but at what cost to Israel? Or is this simply a sad day for England, with their leader being only the second democratically elected official (first was France!) to honor the Godfather of modern day terrorism?

Find more from the blogway here...