December 3, 2018

Tall Order – Defense Ministry Buys 360,000 Hanukkah Donuts

Jam and chocolate is the order of the day for donuts that will be given to IDF soldiers serving throughout the Hanukkah season.

The Defense Ministry announced on Sunday (25th) that it had purchased 360,000 of these sweet treats for ground troops and commanders, as well as Air Force and Navy bases across Israel.

The ministry said it had also bought 16,000 packages of Hanukkah candles, 30,700 tin menorahs and 200 large menorahs for the holiday, which is slated to begin at sundown December 2 and end at sundown December 10.

Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem following the Jewish victory over the Syrian-Greeks in 165 BCE.

Sufganiyot (donuts) and potato latkes pancakes are traditional Hanukkah foods as the holiday celebrates the miracle of the oil that should have sufficed for one day but burned for eight when the Maccabees – the Jewish army – rededicated the Temple.



Israeli Artist Beats Gaza Rockets Into Hanukkah Candelabra

A Hanukkah menorah sculptor Yaron Bob fashioned a menorah out of the remnants of a rocket fired from Gaza.  You can hear the clang of the hammer on metal and the roar of the blowtorch long before you walk into the metal sculptor’s workshop.

Featured prominently in his shop is a quotation from the Book of Isaiah: “And they shall beat their swords into plowshares” (Isaiah 2:4)

Bob is doing something close to that in his studio in Yated, an agricultural community near the border where Israel, Gaza and Egypt meet.

The twisted shrapnel is dropped off at his smithy shop by police, and Bob, 47, crafts artwork and religious symbols from the metal, selling his creations in Israel and abroad.

In the run-up to the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, Bob was busy crafting a monumental hanukkiah, a candlestick with nine branches that is used during the eight-day festival that starts at sundown Sunday (2nd).

Bob also makes the seven-branched menorah, a symbol that appears on the emblem of the State of Israel.

“The idea of turning rockets into menorahs and hanukkiyot is turning the symbol of death and destruction into a symbol of light, and the hanukkiah is the symbol of light,” Bob said.



Arab League Accuses Israel Of ‘Judaizing’ Jerusalem

The Arab League has expressed solidarity with the Palestinians by accusing Israel of attempting to “Judaize” Jerusalem.

In his address to the opening meeting of the UN’s annual International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People Wednesday (28th), Arab League envoy Maged Abdelfattah Abdelaziz criticized US policy in the Middle East, including the “illegal recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May, and the defunding of UNRWA.

He also claimed that Israel was attempting to redesign Jerusalem’s demographics and called on the international community to safeguard Jerusalem’s holy sites from Israel.

Jerusalem has been the capital of the modern state of Israel since its founding in 1948 and is the holiest city in Judaism.

The Palestinians often deny that there ever was a Jewish presence or Holy Temple in Jerusalem, consistently referring to the First Temple built by King Solomon as “the alleged Temple.”

The denial of Jewish history in Jerusalem and rejection of the existence of the Temple by the PA and Fatah – both headed by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas – is a well-documented phenomenon, as is the PA claim made without evidence of Israeli theft of artifacts and misrepresentation of history.



Iranian Jet Carrying Arms Flies Directly To Beirut

A Boeing 747 belonging to Iranian airline Fars Air Qeshm, reportedly used by the country’s Revolutionary Guards to smuggle weapons to allies of Tehran, conducted a direct flight from the Iranian capital to Beirut for the first time on Thursday (29th).

Last month Fox News reported that a Fars Air Qeshm flight from Tehran to Damascus, which later continued to Beirut, was carrying weapon systems – including GPS components – intended to convert inaccurate projectiles into precision-guided missiles.

Suspicions first arose that Iran uses cargo airlines to smuggle advanced weapons two months ago after reports emerged that the Israel Air Force (IAF) carried out an attack on targets at the Damascus airport.

“The Iranians are trying to find new ways to smuggle weapons to their allies in the Middle East… They are exploring the West’s ability to locate the smuggling sites,” said a Middle Eastern intelligence source, who chose to remain anonymous.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed two months ago, during a speech at the UN General Assembly, that over the past year, Hizbullah – guided by Iran – has attempted to build an infrastructure for the conversion of surface-to-surface missiles into precision-guided missiles near the airport in Beirut.

“I have a message for Hizbullah today: Israel knows what you are doing, Israel knows where you are doing it and Israel will not let you get away with it,” Netanyahu stressed during the speech.



Swastikas Graffitied In Office Of Columbia Jewish Professor

A Jewish professor at Columbia University in New York arrived at her office Wednesday (28th) to find two red swastikas, along with the derogatory term “Yid,” spray-painted on her walls.

The NYPD opened an investigation into the apparent hate-crime targeting Elizabeth Midlarsky, 77, who has served as a professor at the Columbia Teachers College for nearly three decades.

“I opened the outer door and almost passed out,” she told the media.  “I was so shaky, I wasn’t sure I was going to make it.”

The professor, who is not in good health, said she provided police with a statement before being taken home.

The president of the Teachers College, Thomas Bailey, released a statement “unequivocally” condemning the apparent hate-crime.  “We are outraged and horrified by this act of aggression and use of this vile anti-Semitic symbol against a valued member of our community.”

“I haven’t done anything, or said anything,” she told the media, adding that she sees the apparent hate-crime as  “connected to a trend and upsurge in anti-Semitism that we’ve seen in recent years.”