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Political Ponderings

Merci Beaucoup

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I did not even get a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower. Not only did I not see the Eiffel Tower, I also did not see The Lourve, Champs-Elysees, Musee d’Orsay, or the Arc de Triomphe. Though it was my first trip to Paris, I did not see any of the sights that this enchanted city is famous for. What I did see, however, was something...

Sounding the Alarm

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“As far as I can tell, there was nothing new.” With those ten terse words, President Obama casually and callously dismissed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to a joint meeting of Congress.

In an interview after the speech, the President noted that he did not watch Netanyahu’s address. However, after stating that he read the transcript of the remarks, he declared that Netanyahu failed to “offer any viable alternatives” with regard to a possible deal with Iran, which is intended to address the rogue state’s nuclear program.

The President completely missed the point. In order for his efforts to be deemed successful, Prime Minister Netanyahu did not have to...

Terumah 5775: The People’s House

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Though it was God’s house, it never became His Majesty’s Temple.

The Mishkan was the very first people’s house. God commands Moses to accept contributions from anyone, whatever their heart desires (kol nediv libo) to donate to the Tabernacle. And, as I’ve written in a previous year, God finds a use for every last item offered.

Why?

In the words of the poet Maya Angelou, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

The Tabernacle was a place of hierarchy, of pomp, and ritual. Priests and Levites entered areas forbidden to commoners. Not everyone had the same opportunities during...

Can’t We All Just Get Along?

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Diplomatic protocol is sacrosanct to world leaders. Adherence to the unofficial rules of international diplomacy is universally expected and any deviation from those rubrics is viewed as a serious breach of this unwritten code.

As savvy as he is, Ron Dermer, Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, committed a big blunder when he worked exclusively with House Speaker John Boehner to arrange for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress in March.

Let us forget for a moment that the speech was scheduled to take place just a short time prior to the upcoming Israeli elections for the Knesset. That alone elevated the Ambassador’s actions to a major faux pas. Let us instead...

Feeling Like the Neglected Child

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Some may say that New Jersey residents have a bit of a complex. They often feel a sense of inferiority when compared to flashy and famous New York right across the Hudson River. Despite all the Garden State has to offer, many New Jerseyans have grown accustomed to playing second fiddle to their neighbor, the Empire State.

Yet, there is a renewed sense of inferiority among New Jersey residents these days when they turn their eyes towards Trenton. The one person who should theoretically be their biggest cheerleader and offer them infinite consideration and endless support has sadly turned his attention elsewhere. Governor Chris Christie has seemingly moved on to bigger and better things...

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