This past month has seen some horrible tragedies that have befallen both the Jewish world and our world at large, enough to last a lifetime.
A 13 year old girl was murdered by Palestinian terrorists. Shortly thereafter, a father of 10 and the head of a Yeshiva was gunned down, and his wife and three children were severely injured. Two black men were killed by the police under very questionable circumstances where their race most likely played a factor. And five Dallas area Police officers were gunned down intentionally, as they were patrolling a peaceful rally.
But there are signs of hope that peace can reign. In Israel, the first responders to the injured Jewish family in Israel were Palestinian and they saved lives. In our own country, the protestors in the Black Lives Matter movement (who are from many different races) are using the words peace, justice, equality – universal ideals that we can admire and strive for. And the Police in every city are being thanked and recognized for the wonderful work that they are doing in keeping us all safe. May we see peace and justice speedily in our days, and without the corresponding tragedies as the conduits for change.
Israel Wins Again
These past two weeks have seen remarkable achievements diplomatically for the state of Israel; very rare achievements as anti-Zionists grow ever more aggressive in seeking to isolate her.
First, Israel has now been elected to chair a committee at the United Nations, a historically hostile body for Israel.
Second, Prime Minister Netanyahu has just completed a four nation tour of Africa, and it was a rousing success. These African nations, which had strained relationships with Israel for many years welcomed the prime minister with open arms. Israeli businessmen in tow, they walked away with over a billion dollars in signed commercial contracts.
Third, Israel finally concluded its years-long dispute with Turkey and signed an agreement to move forward with closer relations. Israel-Turkey relations were severely damaged in 2010 because of an incident involving a Turkish aid ship that tried to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza that led to the death of some on the ship. Ambassadors have been exchanged, economic ties deepened, and diplomatic cooperation improving.
Finally, the Egyptian foreign minister came to Israel for a visit, for the first time in a long time. Israel’s strategic interests are increasingly coordinated with Egypt, and relations between them are stronger now than they have ever been. Egypt has even proposed hosting a peace conference between Israel and the Palestinians.
While anti-Zionist movements like BDS seek to isolate Israel politically and diplomatically, the opposite is happening as more and more countries are improving ties with Israel. Once hostile countries are seeking to improve diplomatic and economic ties, and trade between historical allies of Israel are expanding exponentially.
On Sunday, July 31, at 4 p.m., please join our community in our garden as we plant seeds and learn about cooking, local food, and partner organizations. There will also be an opportunity to learn more about The J’s JOFEE (Jewish, Outdoor, Food and Environmental Education) program and how you can get involved! This will be a great program and fun for the whole family, and the food planted will be harvested during Sukkot. I look forward to seeing you all there.