News Digest — 4/24/20

The U.S.-Israel Nexus: The Founding Fathers, Moses And The Bible

2020 is the year that marks four centuries from the landing of the Mayflower on the shores of the New World in 1620, which was the beginning of a strong and profound bond between the American nation and the Jewish People and the State of Israel.

In honor of the event Yoram Ettinger, a retired Israeli ambassador and an expert on the U.S. and the Middle East, and “Boomerang-Fighting for Israel” have created a unique project titled “1620-2020 The 400th Anniversary of the U.S.-Israel Nexus.”  This video is the second in a series of 9, displaying the unique bond between Israel and the U.S.

Judeo-Christian values, in general, and the legacy of Moses and the Exodus, in particular, had a profound impact on the Early Pilgrims, the 1776 Revolution, the shaping of the Federalist Papers, the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, Separation of Powers and much more.

Long after the 1620 landing of the early Pilgrims in the New World, the legacy of Moses and the Exodus continues to have a profound impact on the culture and the state of mind of the United States.

From then till today the link between the U.S. and its religious roots is reflected by the hundreds of statues and engravings of Moses and the Ten Commandments that are prominent around the United States.  These monuments are featured in the Chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Supreme Court, Library of Congress and all over the U.S.: in Austin, Texas; Oklahoma City; Little Rock, Arkansas; Phoenix, Arizona; Denver, Colorado; Bismark, North Dakota; East Grand Forks, Minnesota; Cumberland, Maryland; Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and more.   

The Bible played such an important role in the lives of young America that John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the second and third U.S. Presidents, along with Benjamin Franklin, proposed that the U.S. Seal should depict the Parting of the Sea, the Pillar of Fire and Pharaoh’s drowning chariots.  Instead, the official U.S. Seal is an illustration of an eagle with thirteen stars above its head, representing the original thirteen states.  Nonetheless, this seal depicts the thirteen stars in the form of a Star of David, the most well-known symbol of Judaism throughout the ages.

The Federalist System, devised to unite all the colonies under a central government, was named after the Latin word, “Foedus,” which relates to the Biblical Covenant between God and the Patriarchs of the Jewish People.

Moreover, the inscription on the Liberty Bell is from the Book of Leviticus, Chapter 25, Verse 10: “Proclaim liberty throughout all the Land, unto all the inhabitants thereof.”  The inscription is the essence of the Biblical Jubilee, which is the role model of liberty.

Furthermore, Thomas Paine’s “Common Sense,” which was the moral and intellectual cement of the American Revolution, was influenced by the Old Testament, highlighting the teachings of the Judge Gideon and the Prophet Samuel.

With the impact of the Ten Commandments and the Bible upon the formation and nature of the United States, it is clear to realize the unique spiritual and intellectual common denominator binding the United States with its most reliable, systematic and effective ally, the Jewish State.



Just How Safe Are Jews In The US?  ADL Survey Paints Grim Picture

About two-thirds of American Jews say they are less safe than at any other time in the past decade, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said on Tuesday (21st).

The figure was revealed in a newly released survey conducted by YouGov among 538 American Jews two months ago.

According to the survey, 54% of respondents said that they have experienced an anti-Semitic incident or witnessed one.

Almost half, some 49%, said they heard of others being addressed with anti-Semitic slurs or remarks, and a smaller proportion expressed concern that a person wearing a skullcap or who was otherwise visibly Jewish, would be attacked in public, whether verbally or physically,

Some 27% said they have taken concrete steps to avoid being targets of such attacks, including by disguising their Jewish identity or even changing their last name.

“Our tracking has shown that lethal and nonlethal anti-Semitic attacks have been on the rise in recent years, and now we’ve also found that American Jews are deeply concerned for their personal safety and their families’ and communities’ security in a way that they haven’t been in more than a decade,” ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said following the release of the survey.

“It is a sad state of affairs that in the face of widespread anxiety about anti-Semitic attacks, some Jewish Americans are modifying their routines and avoiding public displays of Judaism to minimize the risk of being targeted,” he said.



Nikki Haley: UN Security Council Must Investigate China’s Guilt In Pandemic

Nikki Haley said the U.S. must call for a UN Security Council meeting to investigate “China’s involvement and knowledge of the coronavirus,” in a Thursday (23rd) tweet.

The former UN ambassador said the world body must look into when China knew about the virus and what decisions it made.

It’s not the first time that Haley has questioned China’s forthrightness concerning the pandemic that has killed 183,424 and infected 2.5 million globally.  In an April 2nd tweet, she questioned China’s official numbers.  “China has reported only 82,000 coronavirus cases and 3,300 deaths in a nation of 1.5 billion people.  This is clearly not accurate,” Haley said.

“China cares more about its reputation than helping the rest of the world defeat a virus that was started in their country,” Haley added.  She made her comments in light of reports that the CIA was independently assessing China’s numbers.

Haley also criticized the World Health Organization the next day asking “why they took China’s word” that there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus.  The WHO has come under criticism elsewhere with President Donald Trump cutting funding to the UN health body for its failure to correctly evaluate the dangers of the virus.

(Meanwhile, as of Friday morning (24th) the total of coronavirus cases in Israel stands at 14,882, with the death count at 193.)



Israel Researchers Say They Can Make Disinfectant From Tap Water

Researchers at Bar-Ilan University have developed what they say is a new way to make strong and environmentally friendly disinfectants to kill bacteria and viruses by using just tap water.

The method, which has not been submitted for peer review or yet published in a journal, was developed and patented by Dr. Eran Avraham, Dr. Izaak Cohen and Prof. Doron Aurbach, head of the electrochemistry group, of the Department of Chemistry and Institute of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials at Bar-Ilan University.  Peer review is a standard check for research and is a key step in validating a discovery.

The disinfectant materials were recently tested by researchers in the virology labs of Professor Ronit Sarid of the Mina and Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Science at the university and at the Poriya Hospital in the north of Israel, and were “proven effective” in neutralizing microbes, fungus and corona-type viruses, Prof. Doron Aurbach said in a phone interview.

The disinfectants are created by an adjustable, gentle electrification of water, he explained.  “Water usually contains salt – sodium chloride, and when you apply electricity to water you cause electrolysis – decomposition of water that forms the elements hydrogen and oxygen as gases.”

When the water contains also sodium-chloride above a certain level, its electrification or electrolysis, produces in addition to hydrogen and oxygen, also chlorine gas.

What the Bar-Ilan researchers have developed is “a process that develops hypo-chloric-acid, containing the three elements bound together, at a well-defined level of acidity and adjustable concentrations,” he said.  “We form highly aggressive oxidative conditions for all kinds of microbes.”

“The process is tricky,” he added, “and the electrolysis needs to be done in a very judicious way, to create the optimal disinfecting capability.  The combination of the hypo-chloric-acid with a certain level of acidity transforms the electrified water into a very oxidizing agent that makes it possible to have a very effective disinfectant.”

“The disinfectants were found to be effective and safe to use to combat bacteria, viruses, and spores, while at the same time posing no damage to larger bodies, such as skin cells.  The materials also do not contaminate groundwater, the university said in a statement.

“We examined the ability of these materials to impair human coronavirus, and it was completely eliminated when exposed to the disinfectants.  The SARS-GoV-2 virus can also be easily eliminated with this disinfectant,” said research Professor Ronit Sarid in a statement.



Emboldened By Closures, Foxes Prowl The Israeli Port City Of Ashkelon

Red foxes have been making appearances in the southern city of Ashkelon, drawn out from the seclusion of the desert dunes by the coronavirus lockdown that has kept people off the streets.

The animals, usually a rare sight in busy urban areas, have a biblical resonance.  In the Book of Lamentations, the Jewish Temple site in Jerusalem is described as so desolate that “foxes prowl upon it.”

In Judges 15:4, the strong Judge Samson is described as having attached torches to the tails of three hundred foxes, leaving the panicked beasts to run through the fields of the Philistines, burning all in their wake.

In Ashkelon, an ancient Mediterranean seaport and now one of Israel’s main southern cities, families of foxes have become regular features – nosing through discarded food, and playing sometimes unfriendly hide-and-seek with dogs in a local park.

The Arabian Red Fox is a mostly solitary animal, but may form loosely-knit social groups.  They are nomadic, temporarily occupying defined home ranges.

Arabian foxes can adapt to Mountains, deserts, and sea coast areas.  Their diet consists of rodents, birds, fish and desert vegetation. 

Since Israel’s coronavirus lockdown, Jackals have been wandering around Tel Aviv and wild boars have been invading the northern city of Haifa.