To the full speedy recovery of Koroush Eliezer Chaim ben Leah.
In memory of Daniel Levian.
In memory of Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev.
To dedicate a future Table Talk, send an email.
On Sunday I watched the kids enjoy an amazing toy that I never had as a kid.
Not a computer.
Not even electronic.
No rules or regulations.
It’s a long sheet of plastic with pin-holes down one side and that connects to a hose, creating a wet and slippery runway to race down again and again – a “Slip-and-Slide”.
You've never seen so much sustained glee.
Summertime. Who needs gadgets?
+++ end of the family section. +++
+++ Reader discretion advised for below +++
“Sami Kuntar was involved in the death of several Israelis.” - BBC News, broadcast worldwide Wednesday night this week.
Involved?? What kind of involvement, O dear BBC?
In the words of Zeev Bielski, Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, Samir Kuntar is “one of the most evil and abominable killers in the history of Islamic terror”.
On April 21, 1979, Kuntar headed a terrorist unit of the “Palestinian Liberation Front” which reached the shores of Naharya in a rubber boat, shot at a police patrol and killed an Israeli policeman. In the middle of the night, the unit broke into the home of the Haran family and took hostage Danny, the father of the family, and Einat his four-year old daughter while Smadar, Danny’s wife, her two-year old daughter Yael and a neighbor hid in a hiding place in the family bedroom. The terrorists took Danny and Einat to the shore. When they encountered IDF and police forces there, Samir Kuntar shot Danny at short range and smashed Einat’s head with the butt of his rifle against a rock. In the hiding place of the Haran family, baby Yael suffocated to death as her mother, Smadar, attempted to stifle her cries in order to prevent being discovered by the terrorists. Another Israeli policeman died in the course of the fighting on the beach.
Here is a recent article by Smadar (the surviving wife/mother).
This is the man whom the State of Israel freed today. A hero in the eyes of Lebanon. We witnessed the hero's welcome this man received in Beirut - not only from Hizbollah, but from the country's elected leadership, with fireworks and joyous speeches, who promised his people that he will return to Israel to continue his mission.
That's what the BBC means by "involved".
I will tell you the truth - all of these war drums and battle cries, and the consistent dishonest maligning of Israel by the BBC, NPR, CBC, inter alia, is distracting us from the real truth.
The real truth is that when they kidnapped those 2 soldiers 2 years ago, Hizbollah immediately called for the release of Smadar and friends in a swap. His release was always their aim.
Question for your table - how does this story make you feel?
Personally, it makes me feel three things:
1. We are alone
2. We'd better stick together.
3. We are our own worst enemy
I don't recall a time since coming to Baltimore when there were so many people sitting shiva. This is heavy times.
If you are enjoying your summer - and I hope you are - remember for a minute your cousins in Israel and elsewhere who are in anguish.
Question #2 - It's easy to have 20-20 hindsight, but let's be truthful - if you had been in the driver's seat, would you have released Kuntar?
Here's an article that provides one perspective of the facts and repercussions of this story.
And here are the only heroes of this story:
July 21 – San Francisco
July 22 - Los Angeles - on Finding Meaning in Tragedy and Suffering
July 28 and Aug 4 - Baltimore - on Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism
August 11-12 - Vermont (CAJE Conference)
For details, send an email.
(Dad showing the kids not what to do)