Rabbi Wein.com The Voice of Jewish History

Rabbi Wein’s Weekly Blog

Israel/ Zionism

ELECTIONS 3/24/2019 10:57 AM

As the election campaign here in Israel finally reaches its conclusion, much debris is scattered in its wake. Individuals have been maligned, their lives and livelihood threatened, and in some cases, even their reputations ruined irreparably. Such is the nature today of elections in our so-called advanced Western society. The United States is still suffering from the fallout of the 2016...

WEIGHTY MATTERS 3/3/2019 10:17 AM

Some time ago I was standing in a long line before the check-in counter at an airport in the United States. There was quite a delay in reaching that counter because a young woman was having a great difficulty because her suitcase was overweight. The airlines are very strict in enforcing weight limits on luggage, especially because charging for luggage and overcharging for overweight luggage has...

THE PESSIMISTS AMONGST US 1/27/2019 11:38 AM

Purely on an anecdotal basis, I believe that the diehard secular leftists amongst us are pessimistic people. In a recent article written by the Israeli historian Benny Morris and published in the Haaretz newspaper – where else but there could this be published – he posited that the Jewish state here in the land of Israel is doomed to disappear within the next half century. He based this...

ELECTIONS 1/6/2019 10:26 AM

The national sport here in Israel is politics. Everyone engages in it and it is played at all levels of society, in the workplace, the family, in the synagogue and especially in local and national government. Elections are held frequently and are conducted in a vigorous and contentious manner, with no holds barred. No Israeli government coalition has ever served its entire mandated time and we...

The Palestinians’ Worst Enemy 11/18/2018 06:00 AM

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal highlighted a fact that is well-known but usually ignored by the media, and in fact, by governments throughout the world. A study by an NGO that is usually notoriously anti-Israel in its conclusions regarding human rights and has in the past called Israel an apartheid state, recently concluded that the Palestinian Authority (PA) on the West...

Elections 11/11/2018 09:19 AM

Both in the United States and Israel elections have become the main topic of conversation and interest. In the United States, it is the midterm congressional elections that have dominated the public conversation. Needless to say, the conversation has been vitriolic and bitter and the continuing lack of civility in American political life remains troubling to many, though it is hardly unexpected....

THE ZEALOTS AMONG US 9/9/2018 11:07 AM

A great many decades ago when I was yet the student in my beloved yeshiva on the old west side of Chicago, I remember that one of my great teachers told us an anecdote that points to an eternal truth regarding people and their personal ideologies and beliefs. He said that both the cat and the owner of the house are opposed to rats and mice. The difference however is that the owner of the house...

TWENTY-FIVE YEARS AFTER OSLO 8/26/2018 11:53 AM

A most controversial anniversary was marked here in Israel this month. A quarter of a century ago Israel signed the Oslo agreements establishing the Palestinian Authority and giving it control over millions of people and a large swath of territory in the land of Israel. This anniversary was marked in almost complete silence here in Israel. The hopes and optimism engendered by the Oslo...

LOOKING FORWARD 8/5/2018 12:31 PM

Though we are always filled with warmth when looking back at our personal and national lives, Judaism and Jewish life are built upon the idea that we must look forward as well…..and on a constant basis. There is much evidence, both psychological and physical, that when people have an event to look forward to, somehow they have greater powers of physical survival and mental acumen. Simply...

TOUGH TIMES 2/11/2018 11:16 AM

Unfortunately, it seems that things are heating up in our part of the world again. An Iranian pilotless drone invaded Israeli airspace and was shot down by an Israeli attack helicopter. Israel then mounted an attack against anti-aircraft facilities in Syria and during that operation an Israeli fighter jet was shot down. The two crewmembers of the downed jet were able to eject from the plane and...