Trump's Jerusalem embassy move validates 3,500 years of Jewish history

May 17, 2018

I was grateful for the White House invitation to witness the historic opening of the US Embassy in Jerusalem. Truth be told, I believe that every Jew in attendance was thinking of a father, a grandmother, a sibling wiped out in the Nazi Holocaust or any of the millions of Jews, who over two millennia were scattered to the four winds of exile—and on whose shoulders we stand today. For it was they, from Baghdad to Moscow, from New Delhi to New York, from Warsaw to Waukegan who down through the centuries--against all odds-- dared to dream that someday, somehow, their offspring would return home to Zion, to Jerusalem.

From abandonment to validation

For over 1,900 years Jews in exile lived with the bitter bile of abandonment, bereft of rights, subject to the whims of rulers, demonized by religious authorities and derided by neighbors for being different.
The ultimate abandonment came with the Nazi Holocaust in the 1940s with the destruction of European Jewry. In fact, it was the West’s abandonment of Jews in the 1930s that sealed their fate long before the Nazis mass-murdered 6 million of our people—one third of world Jewry.
Validation
So how was possible that less than three years after Auschwitz, that the Jewish nation was (re)born?
It was in large measure because of one man who bucked the advice of diplomats and pundits to support a Jewish state— President Harry S. Truman.
Watching the video in Jerusalem of President Donald Trump’s speech from the White House, I kept thinking about the similar challenges both presidents faced when it came to U.S. policy in The Holy Land.
Truman, who never expected to be the vice president in 1944, let alone could have imagined that he would soon be president of the United States, had zero experience in foreign policy.
Once he became president he would rely heavily on Secretary of State George Marshall, a World War II hero who would go on to win the 1953 Nobel Peace Prize for The Marshall Plan that rebuilt a Europe shattered by war.
Marshall was bitterly opposed to a Jewish state. He was more concerned about having an uninterrupted supply of Arab oil than a people devastated by war and was convinced that the Jews couldn't withstand an Arab military onslaught.
Marshall’s opposition was buttressed by virtually the entire State Department. At one point Marshall even threatened Truman that he would oppose the president’s reelection.
No matter, “Give ‘em Hell Harry” -- with a push from his Jewish buddy and partner Eddie Jacobson—decided to override the “experts” and actively support the Jewish people’s quest for freedom.
On November 29, 1947, he instructed the U.S. to vote for statehood at the United Nations. A few months later, Truman decided that the U.S. would be the first nation to recognize the State of Israel, just 11 minutes after David Ben-Gurion declared the Jewish State.
Through his actions Truman not only changed history, he validated a people who had been left for dead.
Today the Jewish state is alive-- a vibrant democracy and a font of ingenuity and creativity. But it is a nation still under siege—threatened by over 100,000 Hezbollah and Hamas missiles, terror tunnels and Iranian nuclear-tinged saber rattling.
Israel also faces a relentless asymmetrical war of demonization and delegitimization. From U.N. resolutions to church groups to academic assaults to global boycotts to social media campaigns, Zionists are denounced as racists and Israelis as Nazis, latter-day colonialists, interlopers and even  “fake” Jews.
Enter Donald Trump. With the stroke of a pen, he validated 3,500 years of Jewish history by opening the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, debunking the global smear campaign against the Jewish State.
His decision will also have an impact on Christian-Jewish relations. My grandparents fled Eastern Europe at the beginning of the 20th Century primarily because of theologically-fueled hatred from Christian churches and clergy.
They would have been shocked to see the hundreds of Christian Zionists who sat shoulder to shoulder with American and Israeli Jews at the embassy opening on Monday. And they would have been amazed to learn it was American Christians, led by a few million Evangelicals, who consistently reminded President Trump about candidate Trump’s promise to do right by Israel.
Unlike his predecessors who never lived up to their campaign promises -- Trump just did. His place in history and in the annals of the people of Israel are secured forever.
The Article was published on Fox News

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EUROPEAN JEWISH ASSOCIATION CONGRATULATES VIKTOR ORBAN ON REELECTION

“You have been a stalwart defender of Israel on the world stage, recently going against the prevailing EU winds and supporting the move to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel…As long as you continue to show the right way ahead when it comes to defending and upholding Jewish rights, you will continue to enjoy our support”, says EJA Chairman Rabbi Margolin
European Jewish Association has written to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban to congratulate him on his reelection, and to seek assurances that he will continue to defend and uphold Hungarian Jewry under his new mandate, as well as continue his vocal support, diplomatic and political support for the State of Israel.
In his letter to Hungary’s Premier, EJA Chairman and founder Rabbi Menachem Margolin wrote,
‘You have been a stalwart defender of Israel on the world stage, recently going against the prevailing EU winds and supporting the move to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. As European Jewry and the State of Israel are inextricably linked, your support for the Jewish State means a lot to us and we thank you for it.
“During your previous term in office your steadfast assurances and commitments to protect Hungarian Jewry and their heritage were warmly welcomed and were an anchor to us in these turbulent political times.
“With great power comes great responsibility – so the saying goes. We earnestly trust that your previous positive and embracing stance to your Jewish citizens will be carried over into your new term and across your government.
“Europe stands at a crossroads. As long as you continue to show the right way ahead when it comes to defending and upholding Jewish rights and standing up for the State of Israel you will continue to enjoy our support.”

Bulgarian Synagogue and Halle Memorial Targeted in Anti-Semitic Attacks in Europe

Vandals struck a synagogue gate in Bulgaria and a monument to the victims of the shooting attack last Yom Kippur near a synagogue in Halle, Germany, in a spate of unrelated incidents last week in Europe, the JTA reported.
In Bulgaria, the words “Free Palestine Israel=Nazis Antifa Bulgaria” were spray-painted Wednesday on the gate to the synagogue of Plovdiv, a city situated about 100 miles southeast of the capital Sofia.
While in Germany, in Halle, a plexiglas panel on the monument of the shooting was smashed. The vandals also tried to set fire to a flag of Israel under the Plexiglas, the Jewish Community of Halle wrote Tuesday on their social media page.
Also in Germany, in a third incident, a structure inside the Jewish cemetery of the town of Krumbach, in southern Germany, was damaged. Police are treating the vandalism as an anti-Semitic case because earlier this year, a nearby picnic table was dismantled and the wooden polls comprising it rearranged on the floor in the shape of a swastika, the website AllgaeuRechtsaussen reported Monday.
Also Monday, metal thieves removed dozens of fences and railings from around tombstones at the Jewish cemetery of Babruysk in Belarus, the news Bobruisk.ru reported.
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Stunning religious practice in Europe

If the European Union wants to welcome Jews and Muslims, it needs to make their legitimate religious practices welcome as well.
Last week, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), the EU’s highest court, dealt a serious blow to ritual Jewish and Muslim methods of animal slaughter. The court upheld a Belgian law that requires that animals must be stunned before they are killed. Neither Jewish nor Muslim law allows for stunning in the slaughter process.
Proponents of the CJEU ruling and supporters of the Belgian law assert that the stun-first approach is more humane. Critics argue that properly executed slaughter is less painful and less traumatic for the animals. Either way, the ruling is a serious setback for religious freedom in Europe. And it isn’t clear whether the ruling would also prohibit the importation of slaughtered meat that has not observed the stun-first requirement.
Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, urged reconsideration. “Europe needs to reflect on the type of continent it wants to be. If values like freedom of religion and true diversity are integral, then the current system of law does not reflect that and needs to be urgently reviewed,” he said.
According to the CJEU, its ruling actually protects religious practices and doesn’t prohibit any religious observance. It argued that the ruling permitted religious practices since it “allow[s] a fair balance to be struck between the importance attached to animal welfare and the freedom of Jewish and Muslim believers to manifest their religion.”
That superficial analysis by the CJEU is remarkably naive and misinformed, since it improperly assumes that religious slaughter can be performed on a stunned animal. It cannot. And, besides, Jews and Muslims don’t want to “manifest” their religion — they want the freedom to practice their religions.
Two distinct elements in European society are promoting the ban on ritual slaughter. Opponents on the left are concerned about animal welfare, and see ritual slaughter as inhumane. Opponents on the far right are ultranationalists, who see Jewish and Muslim practices as alien imports to Christian Europe. Strange bedfellows, indeed. But through their issue alliance, opposition to ritual slaughter has taken on a life of its own, without regard to the sensibilities of Jews and Muslims.
According to Rabbi Menachem Margolin, the head of the Brussels-based European Jewish Association, had Belgium’s parliament “engaged properly with Jewish community officials before banning the practice, some satisfactory solutions could have been found, as has been the case in the Netherlands and elsewhere, because the method of slaughter is not crueler or [more] painful to animals than other methods.” But no such effort was made.
Not every Jew in Europe eats kosher meat. But the availability of kosher food is one of the markers of a thriving Jewish life. In a pluralistic society, every effort must be made to enable such religious observances. If the European Union wants to welcome Jews and Muslims, it needs to make their legitimate religious practices welcome as well.
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Greetings for the Upcoming Rosh HaShanah by President of the Cyprus, H.E. Mr. Nicos Anastasiades

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