Brad L. Burge
God desires that ALL people would accept God's love and salvation through Jesus Christ. God has compelled me to share information with the world relating to the biblical seven year tribulation in order to share Truth in a deceived world.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. (John 1:1-5)
Jesus answered, "I AM the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Peres's 30.4.08 Address at the Opening Ceremony of Holocaust Heroes' and Martyrs' Remembrance Day 2008, at Yad Vashem
We established an army that knows how to win, and is capable of defending a
peace-seeking nation. We proved that our spirit was not broken. The
catastrophe of the Holocaust did not destroy our ability to establish a just
way of life. The Holocaust demanded a supreme effort on our part. Even
after our blood had been spilled, we succeeded in becoming first in the
world - in agriculture, medicine, and self-defense.
We will not forget, we will not cover up, and we will not stop asking
ourselves anew each morning, what we can do so that what happened will never
happen again. And we will remember - history has taught us to be vigilant.
We must cultivate both our spiritual and physical power. We have to
strengthen our position, with the power of justice and justifiable power. We
need to seek out friends in this world, and to demand that they keep their
eyes open and recognize imminent danger, rather than offer comfort after the
What is expected of us, we will bear on our shoulders. What is expected of
the world should be acted upon without delay. If the countries of the world
had not delayed, and would have identified the Nazi threat in time, they
could have prevented Hitler from murdering tens of millions of people. They
could have prevented war from breaking out.
We stand here today with tears in our eyes, and yet we will not immerse
ourselves in our tears. Only a strong country is entitled to mourn its
children. Only a nation that believes in itself can commemorate them in a
Only a state with deterrence power, with an army worthy of its reputation,
bent on peace, can ensure that the memory of those who perished will never
We shall pray together. We will say Kaddish in their memory. And we will
sound the notes of "Hatikvah" for the generations to come.
Non-Jewish residents under Jewish rule - Seven Noahide Laws - Ger Toshav or resident alien as in biblical times
In his opening statements the rabbi discussed the position of the adjudicators regarding non-Jewish residents under Jewish rule and asserted that in accordance with the Torah, anyone who recognizes Israel as a Jewish nation and pledges to adhere to the seven Noahide Laws should be conferred the status of 'Ger Toshav.' The term literally means 'resident alien' and was used to refer to gentiles living in Israel under during biblical times.
Rarely displayed segment of Dead Sea Scrolls to be displayed for Israel's 60th - Israel News, Ynetnews
A rarely displayed segment of the Dead Sea Scrolls are part of an exhibition for US President George W. Bush and other dignitaries attending Israel's 60th anniversary celebrations next month.
The ancient manuscripts date back over 2,000 years and contain almost the full text of the Jewish Bible, as well as early Christian texts. The segment on display will be from Psalm 133. It reads: ''Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.''
The IDF's Chief of Staff, Maj.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, visited the former Nazi death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau Wednesday at the head of an IDF delegation. In a ceremony at Block No. 27 in the camp, Ashkenazi lit a memorial candle for a Jewish youth who was murdered in the camp and left no trace or memory behind.
He signed the Auschwitz Memorial Book and wrote: "I came as the Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Force, on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day and just before Israel's 60th anniversary to say: never again. Never again will helpless Jews stare terrified through barbed wire fences. We came to remember and not top forget and to tell them and for their memory – never again."
The Yad VaShem Holocaust Museum and Memorial will make available online its photo archives on Thursday, Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day, which begins at sundown Wednesday night.
Yad VaShem will upload 130,000 photo images, including pictures taken in ghettoes, during deportations and at concentration camps. Photographs in the database are also linked to existing information about its content, and by clicking on an image, a Google map will automatically open, showing the location of the places mentioned in the caption.
The Associated Press: GM posts loss of $3.3B on weak US market & a strike at a major supplier and plummeting sales of sport utility vehicles/pickups
On Tuesday a senior Syrian analyst with close ties to President Bashar Assad declared that Damascus will never sever its ties with Teheran or Hizbullah even in the framework of a peace agreement with Israel.
Sending a second aircraft carrier to the Persian Gulf could serve as a "reminder" to Iran, but he said it is not an escalation of force, said US Defense Secretary Robert Gates Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters after meeting with Mexican leaders, Gates said heightening US criticism of Iran and its support for terrorist groups is not a signal that the administration is laying the groundwork for a strike against Teheran.
A top Oil Ministry official says Iran, OPEC's second-largest producer, has completely stopped conducting all its oil transactions in US dollars.
Iran has dramatically reduced dependence on the dollar over the past year in the face of increasing US pressure on its financial system and the fall in the value of the American currency. Oil is priced in US dollars on the world market and the currency's depreciation has concerned producers because it has contributed to rising crude prices and eroded the value of their dollar reserves.
Blogger's note: If other large oil producers follow suit and trade in currencies other than U.S. dollars, the dollar will be in much more trouble than it is now.
The salaries of Israeli executives rose 45 percent between 2003 and 2007 while wages of employees rose 0.8 percent, according to a report by the Adva Center. The salaries relate to companies listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.
The employees' wages represent 62 percent of the national income, eight percent less than in 2000, reflecting a growing disparity.
Approximately half a million Holocaust survivors remain alive, half of them living in Israel, according to the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany. Most of the remainder live in the United States and former Soviet bloc countries.
The Claims Conference has been criticized by many for withholding money to tens of thousands of dollars from poor survivors while spending billions of dollars on Holocaust museums and other causes. "Open your pocketbooks now. Don't worry about monuments. You'll have plenty left for monuments when the survivors are gone," Florida resident and survivor Jack Rubin told The Associated Press. The Claims Conference says it distributes $120 million a year, with 80 percent going to survivors or to institutions that help them, including Yad VaShem.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
A 17-year-old girl who belongs to a messianic Christian community has a chance to win the International Youth Bible Quiz in Jerusalem next week.
According to the Yad L'Achim anti-missionary [anti-Christian] organization, the teen who is one of four final contestants in the Independence Day quiz is a member of a secret Christian sect.
Yad L'Achim Chairman Rabbi Shlomo Dov Lischitz called for religious Jews to boycott the quiz if she is allowed to participate. The Education Ministry, which supervises the competition, has chosen not to intervene because under the law, the girl is considered Jewish.
Blogger's note: Bracketed text inserted by me.
The Bush administration hopes to send a pact on civilian nuclear cooperation with Russia to Congress in the next month, but a congressional aide said on Tuesday that resistance would be strong over the deal.
The nuclear deal with Russia could help solve the Iranian nuclear threat issue by clearing the way for cooperation with Russia's offer to host an international uranium enrichment center, that would supply nuclear fuel to countries like Iran. The center could discourage Iran and other countries from developing nuclear fuel cycle facilities that could be used for covert weapons programs.
The president of the World Jewish Congress said Tuesday he wanted Switzerland to cancel a multibillion-dollar Swiss-Iranian natural gas deal because it threatens Israel and the US.
Ronald Lauder, a billionaire cosmetics magnate, said the deal signed by Swiss Foreign Minister Calmy-Rey in Tehran last month has angered the WJC because of Iran's hardline president and because it comes at a time when the United Nations has imposed sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program.
"Maybe that money that Switzerland is paying to Iran will some day be used to either buy weapons to kill Israelis or buy weapons to kill Americans or buy missiles to be able to deliver nuclear weapons," he said.
"I'd like them to cancel it, yes," Lauder told reporters in the Swiss capital. But he said he did not want to exert pressure on the Swiss government.
Farmers here are experiencing water torture as they wait for the flooded Mississippi River to recede and give them a chance to salvage what's left of what might have been the best season in memory.
The muddy Mississippi is at levels not seen in more than three decades, putting hundreds of thousands of acres of farmland under water. It's impossible to gauge overall agricultural losses at this point, federal and state officials say, but most agree the cost will be expensive and the damage extensive.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says a total of 855,750 acres are under either Mississippi floodwater or backwater from the Yazoo River, which drains much of the board-flat Mississippi Delta into the Mississippi River. About 273,000 of those flooded acres are cleared for wheat, cotton, soybeans, corn and other crops.
The flood hit just as farmers were preparing to harvest wheat and plant corn, soybeans and cotton. Some, like farmer Brad Bradway, were forced to watch as water crept inch by inch over his 110 acres of wheat until his fields sat under 8 feet of water.
Others are now stuck waiting for the water to recede and the ground to dry before they can plant, guaranteeing a shortened growing season, yield reductions and lower returns. This comes after a drought has left much of the region parched for several years.
"At one point I had 300 acres under water and 240 acres too dry to plant," Bradway said. "What's wrong with this picture?"
Weather is just part of the problem. Input costs such as fuel and fertilizer have risen dramatically in just a few months. Diesel around Vicksburg costs more than $4 a gallon — or more than $100 per tank for the ubiquitous diesel pickup — and fertilizer that went for $68 an acre last season now runs $100.
Bradway sold 1,000 bushels of winter wheat to a distributor for $7 a bushel. When the flood took his crop, he was still on the hook. So he paid $10.50 a bushel to another distributor for wheat to satisfy his contract. He hopes to turn a profit on soybeans this summer.
"I'm trying to design an exit strategy because I'm tired of it," Bradway said.
President George W. Bush aimed Tuesday to address mounting anxieties about US economic problems as energy prices soar and more Americans lose their homes in foreclosures.
The president planned to talk about those and other subjects in a news conference at the White House.
Britain's Prince Charles and his wife Camilla are visiting historic sites of the Renaissance city of Krakow in Poland before opening a Jewish community center there.
The Prince of Wales has supported efforts by the British-based World Jewish Relief organization to set up a Jewish Community Center Krakow.
He came to the city with Camilla for a few hours on Tuesday to open the center in the former Jewish district of Kazimierz and to visit the sites.
Israel News - Rice Supply Takes Hit In Israel As Unprecedented World Demand Sharply Exceeds Supply, Israelis Stunned As Rationing Begins | Infolive.tv
The world food crisis continues to hit Israel hard. The price of rice rose more than 50% during the past few weeks.
The heart of the problem lies in a sharp increase in demand from countries like China and India. Their populations are exploding, and there are many mouths to feed. Since rice is grown abroad, any change in world demand hits countries like Israel - which don't grow rice - profoundly.
The price of bread will also rise by 70%, and meat will go up by 40%!
IDF Intelligence Chief Major-General Amos Yadlin warned Tuesday that Hamas is planning a major terrorist attack for Independence Day, together with a list of other terror organizations.
Yadlin told the government at a cabinet meeting that Hamas may try to breach the security barrier and infiltrate pre-1967 Israel, possibly in a manner similar to that in which it blew up the border between Gaza and Egypt in January.
. . . Back to the wells and to the fountains
Within the ancient walls
The sound of horn from Temple's mountain
Again so loudly calls,
From rocky caves, this very morning
A thousand suns will glow
And we shall go down to the Jordan
By way of Jericho.
Yerushalaim all of gold
Yerushalaim, bronze and light
Within my heart I shall treasure
Your song and sight.
The song Jerusalem of Gold, by Naomi Shemer was chosen from among eleven other tunes to the official song of Israel's 60th Independence Day celebrations Monday night.
The song was voted upon by viewers of a televised program in which all the tunes were presented, with a panel of judges offering their opinions as well.
The song, composed shortly before the 1967 Six Day War, saw verses added after the victory refering to the Temple Mount, Jericho and other areas liberated in the miraculous victory.
Rising food prices are threatening to plunge more than 100 million people on every continent into hunger
Global food prices surged 57 percent last month from a year earlier, according to the UN, and the World Bank warns civil disturbances may be triggered by rising food prices in 33 countries. Rice, the food staple for half the world, has more than doubled in the past year.
``Without full funding of these emergency requirements, we risk again the specter of widespread hunger, malnutrition and social unrest on an unprecedented scale,'' Ban said, adding there were ``many causes'' for the food crisis, such as flooding and drought caused by climate change, changes in consumer patterns, biofuels, market structures and trade matters.
``It's well known that trade-distorting farm subsidies from rich countries have damaged food production in developing countries,'' World Trade Organization told reporters.
B'desh raises storm alert, urges swift rice harvest
Bangladesh on Tuesday asked farmers to speed up their rice harvest as the country braces for a powerful cyclone likely to hit in two or three days. British-based storm tracking service Tropical Storm Risk (http://tsr.mssl.ucl.ac.uk/) rated Nargis as a category 2 storm on Tuesday and it was expected to reach category 4 strength in 36 hours.
Bangladesh has been facing serious food shortages after last year's floods and a cyclone, which together damaged nearly 3 million tonnes of rice, the country's main staple.
Food stocks has been further affected by the army-backed interim government failing to import enough rice to fill the gap because of a global spike in food prices as well as limited supplies from exporters.
Cyclone Sidr killed nearly 3,500 people last November. It destroyed 1.8 million tonnes of rice in the fields and left around two million people homeless. The storm was the most powerful to hit Bangladesh since a cyclone in April 1991 killed 143,000 Bangladeshis.
Yad VaShem, Israel's Holocaust remembrance and education center, Launches YouTube Channels - News Briefs - Arutz Sheva
Yad VaShem, Israel's Holocaust remembrance and education center, has launched two YouTube channels in advance of Holocaust Remembrance Day, which takes place this year on May 1.
The channels are in English and Arabic and contain testimonies from Holocaust survivors, including archival footage, historians’ lectures on key issues related to the Holocaust, footage from visits to Yad VaShem, including those of President George W. Bush in January 2008, and Pope John Paul II in March 2000, as well as human interest stories, such as family reunions. The Arabic channel has testimonies and archival footage about the Holocaust, with Arabic subtitles. Yad VaShem says new videos will be added frequently, with additional languages to be added soon, as well.
Russian Jewish Roman Abramovich, the billionaire owner of England's Chelsea Football Club, has presented plans to build a $300 million palace, which will be the most expensive house in the country. The plans call for a private movie hall in the eight-story structure, three of them underground.
The most expensive house in the country currently is a $160 million residence. Abramovich is listed as England's third richest person.
Syria was less than a year away from being able to produce enough plutonium to build one or two nuclear bombs a year at a nuclear reactor under construction and which Israel bombed last September, revealed Michael Hayden, director of the American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). He made the statement to students at the Georgetown University in the capital.
He added that the United States kept information about the nuclear reactor secret in order not to provoke Israel to attack Syria.
Virginia Governor Timothy M. Kaine declared a state of emergency yesterday after tornadoes injured about 200 people and caused damage in the cities of Colonial Heights and Suffolk.
Monday, April 28, 2008
US President George W. Bush will travel to the Middle East from May 13-18, to visit Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, but is not planning a trilateral summit with Israeli and Palestinian leaders while there, the White House said Monday.
The president's trip will celebrate America's close ties over the past six decades with Israel, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary, it said. While in Israel, Bush plans to meet with President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and address the Knesset.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived Monday in Pakistan for a brief visit in which the two countries were expected to discuss Afghanistan and a pipeline project opposed by the United States.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad greeted and hugged Pakistani officials after getting off the plane in Islamabad, the Pakistani capital. Rifle-toting soldiers flanked a red carpet laid out on the tarmac for the Iranian leader, state television showed.
Ahmadinejad is to meet with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani during the hours-long stopover on his way to Sri Lanka.
A key subject is expected to be the pipeline, which Pakistan and India are considering building to import natural gas from Iran.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
A Tunisian newspaper is quoting French President Nicolas Sarkozy as saying he is seeking more partnerships with Arab countries regarding civilian nuclear power.
The Ach-Chourouk paper reports that Sarkozy says he is convinced that nuclear energy is a key to sustainable development. Sarkozy will make a state visit to Tunisia on Monday. The newspaper quoted him Sunday as him as saying he will sign an agreement on civilian nuclear development there. In the past year, Sarkozy has signed such accords with Algeria, Libya, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.
The Supersol and Blue Square supermarket chains have begun limiting the amount of rice customers can purchase, according to Haaretz. Each buyer may take only two one-kilogram bags of rice. Major supermarkets in the United States made a similar decision to limit the purchase of rice last week, imposing a consumption limit for the first time in decades.
The limits were set due to a worldwide rice shortage after major exporters such as Vietnam, India, and Egypt decided to stop exports in order to ensure an adequate food supply for their own growing populations. The price of rice has risen by approximately 50 percent worldwide in response, and is expected to increase by 30-70 percent in Israel. Other basic food items, such as flour, sugar, and oil, are expected to increase in price by approximately 10 percent.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Throughout the entire day (beginning at sunset, per the Jewish lunar calendar) places of entertainment are closed by law. Unlike in America, in which Memorial Day is often used simply as an excuse for another sale, Israeli shops, restaurants, movie theaters, etc. are shut down. The radio and television stations play programs about Israel's wars and show programming that convey the somber mood of the day.
Perhaps the most widely recognized commemoration, as on Yom HaShoah, an air raid siren is played twice during Yom Ha-Zikaron. All activity, including traffic, immediately ceases. People get out of their cars, even in the middle of otherwise busy highways, and stand in respect for the sacrifice of those who died defending Israel. The first siren marks the beginning of Memorial Day and the second is sounded immediately prior to the public recitation of prayers in military cemeteries.
Numerous public ceremonies are held throughout Israel. Special readings and poems are often recited. There is a national ceremony at the military cemetery on Mt. Herzl, where many of Israel's leaders and soldiers are buried. Many schools and public buildings have memorial corners with memorials to those from their community who died in Israel's wars.
While mostly viewed in a secular national character, there is also a religious component to Yom Ha-Zikaron. There is a special yizkor (rememberance) prayer and "El Maleh Rachamim" memorial prayer for members of the Israeli Defense Forces who died in the line of duty, which is read at many of the Yom Ha-Zikaron ceremonies. Some members of the religious Zionist (national religious) community has also added special prayers to the prayer service for the evening prayers on Yom Ha-Zikaron. The mourners kaddish is often said. The development of Yom Ha-Zikaron as a religious holiday is still developing.
Russia: Shiveluch Volcano is Erupting in Kamchatka and 6.5 - 7.5 earthquake is most likely in the south of Kamchatka before the end of 2008
Peru's most active volcano, a stratovolcano also known as Ubinas emitting ash, smoke and toxic gases
Townspeople in the area are complaining of migraines and respiratory illnesses which are being attributed to the ash, smoke and toxic gases the volcano is emitting. Flores warned that there was the possibility that drinking water and water used to irrigate could be contaminated the way it was in 2006. Almost exactly two years ago, on April 23, 2006 the Peruvian government declared a state of emergency in the valley when it was determined that the volcano was active. According to Fuentes, the volcanic ash being emitted by Ubinas is affecting the grass on farms, making it impossible for livestock to eat.
After three volcanic explosions formed a column of ash and gas two kilometers high (6561 feet), the country's Geological, Mining and Metallurgical Institute (INGEMMET) reported on Wednesday that Ubinas' activity continues to increase.
Mississippi River at highest flood stage since 1945 and more rain coming - plus tornado destruction reports
The Mississippi River is at its highest level since 1945 and is exceeding levels of 1979, when Jackson was flooded. Another big week of rain and Jackson could be in big trouble.
Delta Council Director Chip Morgan described the gravity of the situation before the Greenville Rotary Club last week. “The levees could not contain the 1927 flood,” he said, noting that many of these original levees have worn down. If a levee breaks, “There would be six feet of water in the lobby of the Greenville Ramada in a few hours.”
Northeast Jackson has done a great job of clearing up the debris from the recent tornado. Everybody is agog at the sheer volume of the debris. It’s amazing how much destruction the storm caused. Everybody has a tornado story.
The US State Department said Friday that terrorists might want to disrupt this summer's Olympic Games in China and warned of a heightened risk of terror attacks there in the coming months.
In a travel alert, the department said that despite increased Chinese security measures, Americans who plan to attend the games or who live in China should exercise caution at all times, especially in large crowds.
The alert was issued shortly after the international police organization Interpol issued a similar warning, saying that violence surrounding the games which begin in August is a real possibility.
A seismology center says a moderate earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.8 has shaken a city in southwestern Turkey. The Istanbul-based Kandilli observatory says the epicenter of the quake is the town of Honaz, near the city of Denizli. The quake struck Friday morning. The Dogan news agency said people ran out of their homes in panic in Denizli. . .
An earthquake knocked pictures off walls and rocks off hillsides in the Reno area late Friday night, a day after a quake caused high-rise casinos to sway and put visitors and residents on edge.
The U.S. Geological Survey reported the 4.7 magnitude temblor at 11:40 p.m. was centered six miles west of Reno near Mogul, where a swarm of more than 100 quakes rattled the area on Thursday, the biggest a 4.2 event.
A 3.5 aftershock followed at 12:29 a.m. Saturday, the USGS said.
The 4.7 quake originally was estimated to be 4.9, but revised downward after more details were available, USGS said.
Scientists are telling residents in Reno to prepare for something bigger after more than 150 tiny earthquakes rippled the ground beneath the city's western suburbs Thursday and Friday. "Nevada's been really quiet for months until a small series began about three weeks ago, and now there have been dozens in the last few days," John Anderson, director of the seismological lab in Reno, said Friday.
Aftershocks can be expected for several more days based on the magnitudes of Thursday's earthquakes, said Anderson, who added that the persistence of this particular earthquake sequence slightly increases the probability for a significant earthquake in west Reno. "However, the occurrence of additional earthquake activity in the area cannot be predicted or forecast," he said.
3.7 magnitude earthquake shook Southern Illinois Friday, originating not far from the epicenter of last week's temblor that rattled St. Louis windows
A 3.7 magnitude earthquake shook Southern Illinois Friday, originating not far from the epicenter of last week's temblor that rattled the windows of many St. Louis area homes.
The U.S. Geological Survey reported that the quake struck at 12:31 p.m. Its epicenter was about five miles northeast of Bellmont, Ill. Seismologists said Friday's earthquake originated along the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone, which produced last week's 5.2 magnitude earthquake. There have been more than 20 aftershocks following last week's 5.2 event, which rattled homes from Memphis to Cincinnati and places in between. The more significant events include an aftershock on the same day the 5.2 earthquake hit and one the following Monday.
"Personally, I am surprised they are continuing to happen," said Robert Herrmann, the local earthquake center's director.
Friday, April 25, 2008
The Southern Baptist Convention is "a denomination in decline" due to drops in baptisms and membership, one of its lead researchers says
Blogger's note: People are increasingly in despair. When people reject Jesus Christ as Lord, they desire fulfillment in life, now. They don't find it in Baptist doctrine because they refuse to accept Christ as Lord. That rejection leaves them empty. They vainly look for satisfaction in other places, instead. People cannot know the true meaning of life outside of Jesus Christ the Lord. They increasingly look for meaning in many incorrect places. God, through nature, is beginning to magnify that error. God desires that people will turn to Jesus Christ, the only answer, while they still have time.
The federal government, eager to boost the flagging economy, will start distributing special stimulus payments Monday - four days earlier than expected.
"Beginning Monday, the effects of the stimulus will begin to reach households," President Bush said Friday. "This money is going to help Americans offset the high prices we're seeing at the gas pump and at the grocery store."
The department announced the early arrival of the payments Thursday after saying last month that it would begin sending out the money on May 2.
As of next week, 800,000 tax filers daily will begin to have their checks directly deposited Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Syria denies US allegations of a secret nuclear program with North Korea's h... - Israel News, Ynetnews
Syria's government has denied US allegations that it was involved in a clandestine nuclear program with North Korea and accused Washington of misleading Congress about the country's nuclear activity.
The Damascus government issued a statement Friday that also alleged the US aided Israel in last year's bombing of Syrian territory.
FOXNews.com - Madonna Film: Kabbalah Propaganda - Celebrity Gossip | Entertainment News | Arts And Entertainment
Indeed, the film uses Harvard celebrity sycophant Jeffrey Sachs and a number of Malawi government officials, mixing them in with Kabbalah staff and philosophy. Even Bill Clinton is thrown into the mix. The result is that all these people, considering heavyweights, seem implicity to endorse Kabbalah.
Her Web site, refers back to Spirituality for Kids, a main division of the Kabbalah Center. High up members of Kabbalah are also on the Raising Malawi board.
Blogger's note: Madonna truly believes that she is doing the right thing by promoting Kabbalah. She can behave "sinfully" because Kabbalah teaches that the only real sin is not following Kabbalah wholeheartedly in order to correct the world with God/nature. This celebrity trend will likely continue to expand briskly. Watch, pray, and prepare.
Rabbi Daniel Moscowitz, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Illinois, delivered the invocation at the April 16 session of the Illinois Senate last week. The date corresponded with the 106th anniversary of the birth of the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of righteous memory.
In his prayer, Moscowitz called on the lawmaking body to recognize that their "privileged position is actually the performance of one of the seven Divine laws given to us by G-d at the dawn of civilization to ensure a peaceful and moral society."
One of the Seven Noachide Laws, maintaining law and order is incumbent upon all human beings.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Dr. Ravi Zacharias
2008 Honorary Chairman, National Day of Prayer Task Force
Holy Father, in a world where so many are hungry,
You have given us food in abundance;
In a world where so many are hurting,
You offer to bind up our wounds;
In a world where so many are lonely,
You offer friendship to every heart;
In a world longing for peace,
You offer hope.
Yet, we are so stubborn and resistant.
Have mercy upon us, Lord.
Our nation is at a crossroads this year;
we look to you to be our strength and shield.
Please give us the guidance to elect one who will honor you
and to respond to the wisdom from above
so that our hope may be renewed and our blessings be treasured.
In God's holy name.
Blogger's note: Lord, may many accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior in 2008. I pray in Jesus' name. Amen and Maranatha.
Researchers said they had identified a chemical contaminating the blood-thinner heparin from China and also shown how it could cause a sometimes fatal allergic reaction in people.
The contaminant is oversulfated chondroitin sulfate, the researchers said, confirming earlier U.S. Food and Drug Administration findings.
It appears to activate two inflammatory pathways, causing severe allergic reactions and low blood pressure, Ram Sasisekharan of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and colleagues reported in the New England Journal of Medicine.
"These results provide a potential link between the presence of chemical contaminant in heparin and the clinical symptoms observed in affected patients," Sasisekharan said in a statement.
Sasisekharan and another team also used a standard analytical method to find the contamination, which had been difficult to pinpoint before, and said it might be used to screen other batches.
The tainted heparin had been used by at least 81 U.S. patients who died soon afterwards. They had classic allergic reactions, with plummeting blood pressure, swelling of the larynx and other severe symptoms.
Their cases forced manufacturer Baxter International (BAX.N: Quote, Profile,Research) to recall the commonly used blood-thinner and caused a diplomatic squabble between U.S. and Chinese officials.
The chondroitin contaminant, derived from animal cartilage, has a structure very similar to that of heparin, taken from pig intestines. It thus cannot be identified with the tests normally used to inspect batches of heparin.
They tested oversulfated chondroitin sulfate taken from FDA samples and found it directly activated an extreme allergic reaction, called anaphylaxis, in pigs.
Oversulfated chondroitin sulfate is derived from a popular supplement used to treat arthritis, among other things. It can resemble heparin's active ingredient but is much cheaper, leading some experts to suspect it was added deliberately.
Chinese officials said on Monday they had tested batches of heparin used by patients who reported health problems and only some of these batches contained the contaminant. But the FDA countered this.
Sam's Club warehouse unit is restricting purchases of some types of rice to four bags a visit as prices reached a record in Chicago futures trading.
The limits on jasmine, basmati and long-grain white rice, a response to ``recent supply and demand trends,'' will be put into effect in all U.S. stores where allowed by law and are effective immediately, Sam's Club spokeswomanKristy Reed said today in an e-mailed statement.
Some consumers have started hoarding rice, the food staple for half the world as prices soar and supplies shrink. China, Vietnam, India and Egypt have curbed sales abroad to safeguard domestic supplies and cool inflation. Thailand also may restrict shipments, a World Bank official said today.
Some of Costco Wholesale Corp.'s stores, including locations in California, have put limits on sales of rice and flour, Chief Executive Officer James Sinegal told Reuters yesterday.
Rice has more than doubled in the past year. Wheat, corn and soybeans gained to records this year, spurring social unrest in Haiti and Egypt.
Israel News - Report Reveals Video Footage Taken Inside Suspected Syrian Reactor Shows Clear North Korean Involvement | Infolive.tv
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Meanwhile, some Lubavitch leaders in London contacted us and said that the Lubavitcher Rebbe was promoting the seven Noahide laws among non-Jews. Knowing how famous Ken was, they asked if he could compose a song based on the message of the seven laws.
Ken agreed and composed a song, "Seven Ways to Heaven." We hired a known actor who spoke about the song and the importance of non-Jews observing the seven Noahide laws. We were interviewed on several talk shows in England and in Ireland.
"We worship with our own, facilitate the worship of others, and serve all," says Maj. Gillian Federico, the senior chaplain for the battalion's brigade.
"This mission dovetails with the teachings of my mentor, the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of righteous memory," says Danzinger. "He urged his disciples to engage Jews of all stripes to invite them to experience the richness of their people’s heritage. Moreover, the Rebbe encouraged caring for non-Jews as well by inviting them to reflect upon the core values that serve as the underpinnings of any moral society, the Seven Noachide [Noahide] Laws predicated on the belief in a Supreme Being."
CIA officials will tell Congress on Thursday that North Korea had been helping Syria build a plutonium-based nuclear reactor, a U.S. official told the Los Angeles Times Wednesday. The CIA officials will tell lawmakers that they believe the reactor would have been capable of producing plutonium for nuclear weapons but was destroyed before it could do so. This was apparently a reference to a suspicious installation in Syria that was reportedly bombed by Israeli warplanes last year.
The CIA officials also will say that though U.S. officials have had concerns for years about ties between North Korea and Syria, it was not until last year that new intelligence convinced them that the suspicious facility under construction in a remote area of Syria was a nuclear reactor, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
By holding closed-door, classified briefings for members of several congressional committees, the administration will break a long silence on North Korean-Syrian nuclear cooperation and on what it knows about last year's destruction of the Syrian facility.
JOEL C. ROSENBERG: ATTENTION, MRS. CLINTON: AHMADINEJAD CANNOT BE DETERRED: Rush Limbaugh cites Epicenter analysis on today's show
Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas arrived in Washington on Tuesday for talks with US President George W. Bush and other top officials, an AFP correspondent said.
Abbas arrived at Andrews Air Force Base late Tuesday, and was to meet with visiting King Abdullah II of Jordan on Wednesday morning, followed by talks with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at 2:00 pm
Seven percent of the voters in Tuesday's Democratic presidential primaries were Jewish, according to exit polls conducted by CNN. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, who won the vote by a decisive margin, was expected to win the support of an overwhelming majority of Jews.
The state's Jewish governor, Ed Rendell, backed Sen. Clinton, who he asserted has a good record in supporting Israel.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
You will remember, on the morning of Feb 21st the city of Wells suffered a magnitude 6.0 earthquake. The city and surrounding area have since gone through continuous micro earthquake activity.
The river is a 50.9 feet at Vicksburg, where flood stage is 43 feet. The previous major flood in 1973 took the river to 51.6 feet at Vicksburg.
Israel News - A Cycling Salute - Nations' Largest Bicycle Marathon In Honor Of Israel's 60th Independence Anniversary | Infolive.tv
In honor of Israel's 60th Independence Anniversary, A Cycling Salute, the largest bicycle marathon in the history of the State kicked off on Monday and will continue over the Passover holidays. During the four day salutory ride, over 2000 IDF commanders, officers, and soldiers as well as young American Jews participating in Birthright, and members of the public will participate in the marathon, that covers Israeli cities and communities from the south to the north of the country.
The marathon will conclude in Nahariya on Thursday where cyclists will be treated to a music festival with Israel's top artists.
Al-Qaeda: Yes to More Attacks in the West; No Hudna With Israel - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Arutz Sheva
In an audio recording released Tuesday, Al-Qaeda's second-in-command, Ayman Al-Zawahiri, said that his organization is intending to strike targets in the West, and that Islam forbids an agreement of any kind with Israel. He also called Lebanon a forward position in the jihad against the Jewish state.
The two-and-a-half-hour recording was the second installment in a series of replies to questions from the public, submitted through sympathetic Islamist websites. The Al-Zawahiri tape was released by Al-Qaeda's media arm, As-Sahab, through a website known as an outlet for the organization's publications.
Reacting to the Palestinian Authority's negotiations with Israel - and to reports that the Islamist Hamas might agree to such an agreement - Al-Zawahiri said that Hamas "spoke of putting it to a referendum despite considering it a breach of Sharia [Islamic law]. How can they put a matter that violates Sharia to a referendum?"
Lebanon is a Forward Outpost of Jihad
In the Islamic front with the Jews, Al-Zawahiri said, "Lebanon is a Muslim forward outpost. It will have a pivotal role, Allah willing, in future battles with the Crusader forces and the Jews. I call upon the jihadists in Lebanon to prepare to reach Palestine."
The senior Al-Qaeda leader further called for the Lebanese to evict United Nations troops, which he called "the invading Crusader forces," from their country.
In late March, Al-Zawahiri issued an audio recording entitled "Rush to Support Our People in Gaza," in which he called on Muslims to "strike the interests of the Jews, the Americans and all of those who participated in the attack on the Muslims." He went on to threaten, "No one can say today that we should fight the Jews in Palestine only." In a recording of Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin-Laden issued less than a week earlier, he vowed to increase his group's efforts to "free Palestine, all of Palestine, from the Jordan to the sea."
'Iraq Heralds an Imminent Victory'
In answer to a question if Al-Qaeda is planning more attacks within those Western countries involved in the
It is against Islamic law for Muslims to live "under the laws of the infidels."
ongoing war in Iraq, Al-Zawahiri replied: "My answer is: Yes! We think that any country that has joined aggression on Muslims must be deterred."
In any event, he noted, it is against Islamic law for Muslims to live "under the laws of the infidels" for an extended period of time.
Regarding all the many fronts in the global jihad, Al-Zawahiri said, "I call upon the Muslim nation to fear Allah's question about its failure to support its brothers, the mujahideen, and not to withhold men and money, which is the mainstay of war.
"I urge all Muslims to hurry to the battlefields of jihad, especially in Iraq," he said, adding, "The situation in Iraq heralds an imminent victory of Islam and the defeat of the Crusaders and those who stand under their flag."
Jesus told the Pharisees that he would be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth just as Jonah was in the fish for the same time period.
The Pharisees were certainly left wondering, then what? What will happen after the three days?
The Jewish leaders surely did not understand what Jesus continued to say in verses 41-42. Jesus gave them a glimpse into the mystery of what would become of the blessed dead after His ascension. (More on that after the following background information)
Before Christ, Judaism was the correct religion. Although, it's leaders had already modified it greatly beyond what God had given them. When Judaism rejected Jesus as the Messiah, Judaism no longer was correct. Judaism had missed the main point of their "Old Testament" scriptures. The scriptures pointed to the Messiah, but they had come to expect something other than what Jesus Christ the Lord had brought them.
Judaism teaches two separate parts in the place of the dead; one for the wicked (sheol or hades, described in Luke 16:19-31) and one for the blessed dead. The place of the blessed dead is known as paradise or Abraham's bosom. Jesus confirmed this teaching in Luke 16:22-23, which is not just a parable but is an actual account of reality at that time before Christ's ascension. Lazarus and the wicked rich man are shown in two completely different environments in the place of the dead. The two environments were separated by a great divide. Sheol for the wicked on one side of the divide and paradise for the blessed dead on the other side of the divide. Those in paradise were separated from Satan's realm of hades, yet they had not yet experienced the blessing of the presence of Christ.
The blessed dead are those that died with the Old Testament faith. Their faith and following made them blessed because of the sure promise of Jesus Christ the Messiah. The blood of Jesus atoned for them and for us. Jesus Christ made Himself the last sacrifice needed for all mankind. Jesus reached back for them and forward for us. May He be praised forever! Amen.
Jesus gave His life on the cross for us; nobody took His life, He gave Himself freely for us (John 10:18). When He did that great act, He descended into paradise, the place of the blessed dead.
Until that event, the sin and death that Satan introduced into the world seemed to have won (Hebrews 2:14). It seemed as though the grave had victory. But, after the cross, the victory and sting of death and the grave were no more (1 Corinthians 15:55 and Revelation 1:18). (End of background information)
The Bible does not give us many details of exactly what happened during those three days and nights between the cross and ascension of Jesus. When Jesus entered the realm of death, what did the wicked dead think and feel and what did the blessed dead think and feel? The blessed dead began to experience the blessing of the presence of Christ. Acts 2:25-31 shows us that David, the king and prophet, foresaw Christ's victory over Satan and death. Then, when Christ ascended, He brought the blessed dead with Him to a new state of paradise; paradise forever in the very presence of Jesus Christ our Lord in heaven. The repentant thief on the cross experienced this firsthand (Luke 23:43).
Jesus, with the keys of death and hell, has made it so that all believers after the cross will pass directly into His presence forever (Matthew 16:18, Ephesians 4:8, 2 Corinthians 5:8, Philippians 1:23, Revelation 1:17-18).
Jesus also gave us an account of how He displayed this victory to many people alive at that time. He demonstrated, to a limited extent, how believers will receive new glorified bodies (Matthew 27:52-53). Forever, their glorified bodies are in heaven with the Lord. This was a fulfillment of the feast of the first fruits of Leviticus 32:10. All other believers will likewise one day also be transformed.
Genesis 2:18 shows us that it is not good for man to be alone. Likewise, the Son of Man, Jesus Christ, chooses not to be alone. From the wounded then healed side of Adam, God made woman to accompany man. From the wounded side of Christ, God has purchased the bride of Christ, the church, to accompany Jesus forever (Ephesians 1:23).
Monday, April 21, 2008
Palestinian officials say they hope to raise $1.5 billion from foreign investors at a conference next month in the West Bank.
Palestinian officials say they've invited more than 1,000 foreign investors. They said Monday that 300 participants have already confirmed their attendance. Among them: An unidentified Saudi investor and a government minister from the United Arab Emirates.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has made the conference a centerpiece of his efforts to develop the local economy to prepare the way for an independent Palestinian state.
The conference is set to take place in the biblical town of Bethlehem from May 21 to 23.
Jordan's Royal Palace says King Abdullah II is traveling to Washington to meet US President George W. Bush on Wednesday.
The palace says the previously unannounced White House visit is at Bush's invitation. A statement issued Monday says the discussions will focus on Palestinian-Israeli peace talks.
The JewsonFirst web site has launched a campaign charging that the annual National Prayer Day is a front for the Christian right. The annual day officially encourages prayer by all faiths, but the web site charged that the National Prayer Day Task Force tries to "foster unity within the Christian church [and] publicize and preserve America's Christian heritage."
It says the prayer day has been "hijacked" to exclude Jews, Muslims and Catholics. The site also calls on state governors to refrain from issuing proclamations endorsing the day. The task force site emphasizes the role of the church in the United States, saying it "has flourished in spite of tremendous opposition."
American Jewish soldiers in the Middle East have received a Passover HaGada signed by American President George W. Bush, Chabad-Lubavitch reported. It arrived in Kuwait last week and then was transferred to Iraq, where it will make the rounds of American bases for approximately 1,000 Jewish troops in the region.
"It must be very uplifting for soldiers with sand in their boots, pressing ahead in difficult conditions, to realize that their Commander-in-Chief cares so much to personally send a special message to them," said American Friends of Lubavitch director Rabbi Levi Shemtov. "I hope this will give a new vigor to troops in the theater."
The HaGada features a commentary from the teachings of the late Lubavitch leader Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson. Copies of the book were presented to President Bush on the occasion of the 106th year since the birth of trhe rabbi, considered by some to be one of the most influential Jewish figures in modern history. The president kept one copy and signed the other, which is being sent to soldiers. "To our troops. May G-d bless you," he wrote.
Blogger's note: It is a shame that our "Christian" nation will not allow the President to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ the Lord with our troops and our nation; not mandate, just share.
Jews in the United States are being forced to cut back expenditures for their Passover meals because of inflation, a diving dollar and a weakening economy, the financial news service Bloomberg News reported. It said that a co-owner of a suburban Washington kosher store estimated that prices have risen 20 percent in the past year.
An 82 percent increase in the price of wheat has caused a 100 percent increase in the cost of flour to make matzo.
A 4.5-magnitude earthquake shook southern Illinois early Monday, the latest in a string of quakes that have rattled the region since last week, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
The quake -- the 18th since a magnitude 5.2 hit the area Friday morning -- was centered about six miles below ground and about 37 miles (60 km) north-northwest of Evansville, Indiana, or about 131 miles (211 km) east of St. Louis.
"I thought, 'Here we go again,'" said Potter, who also felt Friday's initial earthquake and many of those that have followed. "The big concern is ... is this just the beginning of the 'big one?'"
The 18 quakes that followed Friday's moderate temblor have predominantly been minor earthquakes -- magnitude 3.9 and below.
Friday's quake was the strongest to hit in the region in 40 years.
There were reports of minor damage in the region.
Video from Louisville, Kentucky showed debris from the ornamental facade of a building's roofline that fell onto a sidewalk and shattered.
People as far north as Chicago and as far west as St. Louis reported feeling the initial quake, the USGS reported.
"The largest historical earthquake in the region -- magnitude 5.4 -- damaged southern Illinois in 1968," the USGS said.
Republican presidential candidate Senator John McCain appears to be the most Zionist of the three candidates who commented on the Passover Seder and the reading of the traditional Hagada, according to The New York Times op-ed writer William Kristol. Sen. McCain, who was a prisoner of war during the war in Vietnam, was the only one of the three candidates who linked the story of the Exodus from slavery in Egypt with attacks on Jews. He commented that three IDF soldiers who were kidnapped two years ago "will celebrate [Passover] once again, in captivity.”
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton used the Hagada to make a call "to stand up to oppression, tyranny and discrimination."
Rival candidate Sen. Barak Obama noted that the Passover Seder ceremony encourages children to ask questions. He interpreted that as meaning that American policy should emphasize dialogue. He previously has said that if he were elected president, he would talk with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. However, he has rejected the idea of sitting down for discussions with Hamas, which is funded by Iran.
American Jewish songwriter Lawrence Dermer, who has sold more than 50 million records throughout the world, is coming out with a We are Strong song for the 60th anniversary of the re-establishment of the Jewish state. The new work will include the sounds of Ethiopian olim, whom he recorded at their absorption center.
Dermer and his wife Robin also have co-produced an album entitled Third House Rising, featuring songs such as Neshama [soul] and The Maker, a blend of Jewish pop, Latin and Chassidic sounds.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Opinion Letter: Seven Laws of Noah should be observed
On March 26, 1991, both houses of Congress passed Public Law 102-14.
It stated "That the United States of America was founded upon the Seven Universal Laws of Noah, and that these Laws have been the bedrock of society from the dawn of civilization.
They also acknowledged that the Seven laws of Noah are the foundation upon which civilization stands and that recent weakening of these principles threaten the fabric of civilized society, and that justified preoccupation in educating the Citizens of the United States of America and future generations is needed."
The Seven Laws of Noah, not the Ten Commandments, should be posted at public buildings.
There are wonderful Web sites to educate us on the relevance of the Laws of Noah.
Blogger's note: How about posting John 14:6, instead?
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Link to Article by Adin Even-Yisrael (Steinsaltz): Only the Final Redemption will be able to overshadow the Exodus
Blogger's note: Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz does not endorse the content of this blog or JesusRaptureMe.com. He also does not endorse Jesus Christ the Lord and only true Messiah.
Religion plays a central role in its programming, from Talmudic studies to Hebrew lessons to a series on kabbalah. And while a spectrum of Jewish approaches are reflected, from Orthodox to Reform, no one denomination dominates, Golub says.
Police say nearly 4,000 people are on the streets of Brussels and massing outside the headquarters of the European Union to protest against attacks on Christians in Iraq.
Prominent Christians have been slain in Iraq by Islamic extremists in the past few weeks. Tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians are believed to have fled the country since the 2003 US invasion. Organizers say Saturday's peaceful demonstration has drawn between 4,000 and 7,000 people from across Europe. Police are putting the figure at 3,750.
Iran's hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says crude oil prices at $115 a barrel is too low, saying the black gold has to "discover its real value."
Oil prices have hit all-time highs above $115 a barrel with reports that oil and gasoline stocks in the United States were lower than expected and as the dollar has hit record lows.
"The oil price of $115 a barrel in today's global markets is a deceiving figure. Oil is a strategic commodity that needs to discover its real value," Iran's state-run television website reported Saturday.
Friday, April 18, 2008
Shimon Peres inscribed the final letters of a new Torah scroll used by the Chabad Jewish community center in Warsaw.
The Israeli president took part in the ceremony Thursday at the presidiential palace in Warsaw as part of the commemorations for the 65th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising against the Nazis.
"The Nazis violated the Jewish people in body, but they could not touch the life and soul of our people: the Torah," Peres said.
Rabbi Sholom Stambler, the Chabad representative to Poland and head of Warsaw's Chabad center, blessed Peres at the palace. Afterward, the Israeli leader carried the Torah scroll out of the palace and through the courtyard while under the chuppah canopy, in a traditional procession of dancing and singing.
The Torah was then installed in Warsaw's Chabad center.
Daniel Cardinal DiNardo and Rabbi David Rosen of Jerusalem will share perspectives during the luncheon, which also features the election of Tracy Stein as the new chapter president and a thank you to David Barish, outgoing president.
Rabbi Rosen, chairman of the International Jewish Committee on Interreligious Consultations, a broad-based coalition of Jewish organizations representing world Jewry to other religions, is head of the department for interreligious affairs and director of the Heilbrunn Institute for International Interreligious Understanding of the American Jewish Committee.
He serves as an honorary president of the International Council of Christians and Jews; and as an international president of the World Conference of Religions for Peace.
In November 2005, Rabbi Rosen was made a papal Knight Commander of the Order of St. Gregory the Great for his outstanding contributions to promoting Catholic-Jewish reconciliation.
Rabbi Rosen was educated in England and Jerusalem. He served in the IDF and was chaplain to the forces in West Sinai. Subsequently, he served as the senior rabbi of the largest Jewish congregation in South Africa, in Sea Point, Cape Town, as well as on the Cape Beth Din (Ecclesiastical Court), and he was the founder/chairman of the Cape Inter-Faith Forum, the Council of Jews, Christians and Muslims.
Thereafter he was appointed chief rabbi of Ireland, during which time he also served on the Academic Council of the Irish School of Ecumenics. He returned to Israel in 1985 to take up the appointment of dean at the Sapir Center for Jewish Education and Culture in the Old City of Jerusalem and subsequently became professor of Jewish Studies at the Jerusalem Center for Near Eastern Studies. At that time, he also served with the Anti-Defamation League until 2001, when he assumed responsibility for the interfaith activities of the AJC based in Jerusalem.
Aftershocks in the wake of this morning's 5.2 Magnitude Quake in Illinois.
The aftershock was a magnitude 4.5 and occurred around 10:14 AM.
Early this morning, a 5.2-magnitude earthquake in West Salem, Illinois rattled homes across the area
The quake was one of the strongest ever recorded in Illinois and occurred just before 4:37 a.m. southeast of West Salem, Illinois.
The U.S. Geological Survey says two smaller aftershocks during the next three hours measured 2.6 and 2.5.
Aftershocks are smaller earthquakes that follow the main shock and can cause further damage to weakened buildings. After-shocks can occur in the first hours, days, weeks, or even months after the quake. Be aware that some earthquakes are actually foreshocks, and a larger earthquake might occur.
• The New Madrid Seismic Zone, of which portions of Illinois are a part, experienced three huge quakes estimated at more than 8.0 on the Richter Scale during the winter of 1811-12. The region was sparsely populated so only a few injuries are known. But, the force appeared to reverse the course of the Mississippi River for a time and rang church bells in Boston. The power opened fissures, formed lakes, uprooted and snapped trees, sunk or raised large sections of land more than 20 feet and affected 600,000 square miles.
• USGS scientists think a major quake occurs on the New Madrid Fault about once every 500 years. In 2003, the USGS predicted a 7 percent to 10 percent chance of an earthquake of the magnitude of 7.5 to 8.0 occurring along the New Madrid Fault in the next 50 years.
• Scientists estimate the likelihood of a damaging quake measuring 6.3 or greater in the Midwest in the next 15 years at 40 to 63 percent. The likelihood is nearly 100 percent one will occur in the next 50 years.
In recent months, Iran has increased its efforts to smuggle weapons into the Gaza Strip via the sea and also tunnels between Egypt and Gaza, sending the Hamas and Islamic Jihad terror groups there not only weapons and rifles but advanced Iranian made rockets and mortar shells.
According to reports, the overseas branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards knows as the al Quds brigade is believed to be responsible for the weapons flow, as well as supervising the military training of terror operatives who leave Gaza to undergo training in Iran, Lebanon or Syria.
A report in the Jerusalem Post says that many of the weapons are too big to smuggle through the tunnels built underneath the Philadelphi Corridor linking Egypt and the Gaza Strip, and therefore resort to dropping them off the waters in Gaza in waterproof sealed tubes.
Defense officials estimate that in recent months thousands of long range rockets have been smuggled into the Gaza Strip. Officials also estimate that weapons are transferred via another smuggling route, from Iran to Syria and then to Lebanon where Hizbullah ships them by boat to Egypt.
While there is nothing new in the report, the scope of weapons reaching Gaza is a cause of great concern to Israel’s security establishment. Egypt has perhaps realized a little too late that it should have taken harsher action earlier, against the tunnel smuggling and infiltrations from Egypt into Gaza.
Along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon and Syria, tensions remain high. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told local newspapers Thursday that Israel and Syria have been exchanging a number of messages to clarify expectations for any future peace treaty, saying, “they know what we want from them, and I know fully well what they want from us.”
However it is Syrian President Bashar Assad who says he is preparing for war. Quoted in the Arab media, the Syrian president said that while the likelihood of war with Israel appears to be low, he considers it a real possibility and is preparing accordingly. Speaking to a group of Arab leaders in Damascus, Assad said if Israel declares war on Lebanon and Syria, and the United States declares war on Iran, his country will be prepared.
Therefore one should not be surprised with Syria’s latest acquisition as it continues to boost its military might, the Russian made anti aircraft missile defense system, a deal between the two countries to the tune of millions of dollars. Currently, Syrian technicians are in Russia to take delivery of the advanced system, a short range mobile air defense system that combines anti aircraft guns and surface to air missiles that are able to engage in two separate targets simultaneously, ranging from aircraft to missiles and guided bombs.
At the same time both Syria and Iran continue to supply Hizbullah with weapons, and long and short range missiles. Since the end of the Second Lebanon war , Hizbullah has replenished its stockpiles three fold and has in its possession weapons capable of hitting major centers in Israel.
A web site has been set up to allow Jews to do their best to fulfill the obligation to bring the Paschal sacrifice.
"Each year, Jews make feverish and intensive preparations for the Passover holiday with the Seder as its centerpiece," the site says. "However, we are still missing the true centerpiece of the Passover table: namely the Paschal Offering, or Korban Pesach. Korban Pesach is a Biblical commandment of the highest order, with the command repeated and amplified to us in three different places: Exodus 12, 3-12, Numbers 9, 1-13 and Deuteronomy 16.
"Just as circumcision, the first commandment imposed on an individual Jew, our forefather Abraham brought us into the covenant as individuals, the commandment of Korban Pesach, the first commandment imposed on the Jewish People as a collective--obligating men, women and even children--brings us into the covenant as a People."
The site, set up by the nascant Sanhedrin, invites readers to learn more about preparing for the Korban Pesach today.
“Confronted with these deeper questions concerning the origin and destiny of mankind, Christianity proposes Jesus of Nazareth. He, we believe, is the eternal Logos who became flesh in order to reconcile man to God and reveal the underlying reason of all things. . ."
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Now why is Maimonides so insistent that the hametz not be destroyed on the Sabbath? After all, normative law should follow the sages, and they maintain that hametz can be destroyed by casting it to the seas or - in our
Why is Maimonides so insistent that the hametz not be destroyed on the Sabbath?
terminology - by flushing it down the toilet. Should we not physically destroy it on Shabbat and thereby fulfill the command of destroying hametz at its proper time on the fourteenth day of Nissan?
My teacher and mentor, Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, provides a marvelous explanation based on the concept that hametz symbolizes evil. He explains that there are two ways to destroy evil, or to destroy Amalek, who represents evil: either by physically destroying him or by converting him to our side. After all, if Amalek were to accept the seven Noahide laws of morality, he would no longer be Amalek, the symbol of evil. The festival of Passover tells us to destroy the hametz physically because, at the dawn of our history, we were not strong enough to influence evil to accept our ethical world view. Rosh Hashanah, which comes seven months later, is the festival which teaches us that our ultimate and highest goal is to perfect the world under the kingship of G-d and to influence Amalek to repent. The Sabbath represents this higher ideal of converting Amalek rather than destroying him. Therefore, on the Sabbath we can never destroy hametz, not even by casting it to the winds or flushing it down the toilet. On Shabbat morning we can eat the hametz - and therefore utilize it to strengthen ourselves - but we dare not destroy it. Our goal is not to destroy, but rather to convert and uplift - even evil.
President George W. Bush called it ''naive'' to think Iran could not transfer nuclear enrichment knowledge from any energy purposes to produce an atomic bomb.
International credit ratings firm 'Moody's' upgraded Israel's credit rating to A1 - which is equal to the A+ awarded by Standard, Poor's and Fitch - this after the latter two companies upgraded Israel's rating several short months ago.
Finance Minister Ronnie Bar-On said in response that "particularly in these times of instability and an international credit crisis, Israel's economy is being recognized for its fortitude and stability."
Winfrey is nothing if not gifted at recognizing what’s already popular in the culture and exploiting it. But her association with Tolle is way over the top. It involves sponsorships with General Motors (Chevy), 3M Corp. (Post-Its) and Skype Internet phone service. In one broad stroke, she’s managed to accomplish what Scientology never has achieved: bringing corporate America’s implicit approval into religion.
Israel's Polish-born President Shimon Peres on Thursday evoked the memory of his grandfather who was burned alive by the occupying Nazi Germans during World War II, in an emotional speech in what was once Europe's Jewish heartland.
Peres, who was visiting Poland amid commemorations of the 65th anniversary of the Warsaw ghetto uprising, an ill-fated Jewish revolt against the Nazis, made a deeply personal address to parliament in Warsaw.
"I was myself born in Vishniev, a village which was then in Poland, and which was home to a thousand Jewish families," he said.
"I have come to Poland in the name of the dead and the living, to look history in the eye," he told lawmakers.
Peres was born in 1923, and in 1934 emigrated with his family to what was then British-ruled Palestine.
His grandfather was among the relatives who remained in Vishniev, which was part of the Polish territory taken over by Soviet Union in 1939 and then invaded by the Nazis in 1941.
Most of the village's Jewish population died in 1942 when the Nazis forced them into the synagogue and set it alight.
He also pointed to the legacy of fellow Polish-born Israeli politicians, notably the country's founding father David Ben Gurion.
Ben Gurion emigrated at the age of 20 in 1906, led Israel to independence in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war and put his stamp on the country as prime minister until 1963.
Peres began his own political career shortly after the creation of Israel, and, after decades as a key player, was elected president in 2007.
Jews first emigrated to Poland from western Europe to escape 11th century pogroms.
On the eve of World War II, the country was home to around 3.5 million Jews, representing around 10 percent of the country's population -- and Europe's largest Jewish community.
Half of the six million Jews who died in the Holocaust were Polish, and most perished in death camps set up by the Nazis in occupied Poland, including the notorious Treblinka, which Peres visited on Monday.
In 1945, Poland's surviving Jewish population numbered just 280,000.
Many Polish Jews emigrated to the United States or Israel, either immediately after the war or during waves of anti-Semitism driven by Poland's communist regime in the 1950s and 1960s.
According to various estimates, Poland counts just 3,500 to 15,000 Jews out of a total population of 38 million people, more than 90 percent of whom are Roman Catholic.
Poland and Israel have forged strong ties since the fall of communism in 1989, but relations between the Catholic majority and Jews, as well as the legacy of the war and communism, remain sensitive issues here.
President Shimon Peres intends to call for a reconciliation between the ultra-Orthodox community and secular Israelis on Independence Day, the ultra-Orthodox weekly Mishpacha reported in the edition to be published Thursday.
"There is no Israeliness without Judaism," Peres told Tel Aviv Chief Rabbi Israel Meir Lau and Migdal Haemek Rabbi Yitzhak David Grossman, the publication reported.
The president blasted the secular public's attitude toward religious and ultra-Orthodox people.
"I totally reject the scorn (displayed) toward the religious and ultra-Orthodox Jew, whether he wears a capote (a long, black jacket) or a four-fringed garment. There is no place for condescension, derision or mockery. Such behavior heightens the barriers between us," Peres said.
Peres opened his campaign for reconciliation between the secular and the ultra-Orthodox three weeks ago during a visit to the Weizmann Institute.
"The secular public must stop treating the ultra-Orthodox community with contempt," he said at the time.
He told the two rabbis, both Israel Prize laureates for Lifetime Achievement and Exceptional Contribution to the Nation, that he intends to raise the issue of secular-ultra-Orthodox relations in his address to the nation on Independence Day eve.
Peres told the rabbis that he would address "first secular people, before complaining about the ultra-Orthodox and others. I'll say: Let's examine ourselves before preaching to others. After all, we're the majority. This is no way to behave, with disrespect, with lack of restraint. I hope this voice will be heard in all the communities. This issue must become part of the public discourse."
"Our fathers, who revived the Jewish settlement in Israel, acted in two ways. First physical national revival, for we were a nation without land. Then spiritual revival - reviving Jewish culture and heritage, which I see as no less important than the physical revival," Peres said.
The conversation was reported by Yossi Elitov.
Peres said he hoped the second part of the plan - the spiritual revival - would begin soon.
"Let's return to our roots," he said.
"There is no dispute that Israeli youth must learn the Torah. You cannot be an Israeli without being Jewish. Why should we give up the great treasure of Jewish literature? What have our Jewish fathers left us? Neither houses nor pyramids. What is the people of the book? A nation that has books, so why shouldn't this people study them?" Peres said.