October 2011 Archives


Note:   Thanks to Doug Willbanks for sharing this 20-minute interview with us.  It’s excellent.  Doug and I met in Jerusalem in April of 2004 while attending Sabeel’s Fifth International Conference.  See:  www.sabeel.org….   Today Doug is a frequent volunteer helping Sister Elaine at FOSNA’s Headquarters in Oregon.  See:  www.fosna.org….  The man being interviewed is an author who describes what I would call a virtual spiritual experience, which he describes as his “breakthrough” in awareness.   Peace, Roy

In a message dated Oct 13, 2011:

Roy, This is an interview of a Jew, my age, who has finally wised-up.

I think your list will appreciate seeing this. He’s a very good speaker.

Doug      www.presstv.ir/Program/201784.html…



The N.E.M.


Michelle is reading her e-mail.   Michelle: Hon, Dante wants to know what kind of mood you’re in today.  Are you open to a….  President: (interrupts)   Hon, I’ve got a lot on my mind today.  I’m not in the mood for Dante’s shenanigans.   Michelle: Dante says he’s aware that you’ve been under a great deal of pressure.  That’s why he’s writing.  His heart goes out to you.  He’s hoping his humble suggestion will help relieve you of some of your stress and tension and, at the same time, cheer you up.   President: Ask him please to be brief.  Hillary wants to see me this morning, and we’ve got a lot to talk about.

Michelle: Dante says he’s sure you’ve noticed that the international debate about the Holy Land issues is intensifying and intensifying.  We were right, Mr. President.  A robust debate about things that truly matter is just what the world needed.  Here’s the latest development:  Jews Occupying Wall Street will next Occupy Judaism.  Dante says the time has come for you to make your definitive move.  President: My definitive move?  To do what?   Michelle: The time has come for you to move … definitively … to outsmart Benjamin Netanyahu … once and for all.   President: And young Dante is writing to tell me exactly how to do it?   Michelle: He’s trying to be helpful, Hon.  Hear him out.  What he says makes perfect sense to me.   President: Read on.   Michelle: Dante says you’ve got a “window of opportunity” that you won’t want to miss.  Therefore, the time is NOW.   President: Why am I reminded of the Theme Song to the Mighty Mouse Cartoons (00:29)?

Michelle: Dante suggests that you take one (1) giant step at a time. The next necessary thing that you must do is schedule a Press Conference where you can make a major Foreign Policy Speech.    President:  I’m listening.   Michelle: Stand in your bully pulpit, but please don’t do any bullying.   President:  Why did he say that?  Dante knows that bullying other people is not my style.   Michelle: Yes, and that’s why he wants you to be the one to do some teaching.  Begin your speech by announcing that you’ll veto Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s bill to de-fund the UN, if it gets as far as your desk (which it won’t, but be firm).   President: Read on.  I’m listening.   Michelle: Also let the world know that you’re having second thoughts about using America’s veto to abort Palestine’s bid for statehood.  All your options back are on the table.   President: Bibi won’t like that.   Michelle: Tell Bibi not to worry about Iran anymore, that you’re in personal contact with Iran.   President: How does Dante know about the contact?   Michelle: Well, he doesn’t say.  But, Hon, I read that in one of the newspapers.  And then, of course, it was denied.   President: Okay.  Read on.   Michelle: Dante says it’s absolutely imperative that you GO PUBLIC and explain what the obstacles to peace in the Holy Land are.  Voters and taxpayers have the right to know.  Inform the people about the extraordinary influence AIPAC has on our Congress.  You’d be surprised how many Americans aren’t even aware that AIPAC exists.  Expose the NEOCONs who wield a lot of influence in Washington and, for their own reasons, actually don’t want peace.  The stranglehold that special interest groups have on our government must be broken.  President: (silence)  Is there more?   Michelle:  There’s a postscript.



P.S.  Michelle: Dante says that the next necessary giant step will be for you … as the Leader of the Free World … to make it possible (i.e., remove the obstacles) for Palestine to form a unity government.  Dante and his Allies on AOL have suggestions about how you can do that, too, but… one step at a time.  They don’t want you to get ahead of yourself.   President:  (silence)   Michelle: Hon, how shall I answer him?   President: Thank Dante for his suggestion.  And tell him that I apologize for calling him naive in two earlier cartoons.



Posted on October 13, 2011 by Robert Smith on blogs.elca.org…

Today, church leaders in the United States made public their response to the communique issued

The Western Wall and the Dome of the Rock, East Jerusalem

by the Heads of Churches in Jerusalem regarding the current status of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Both documents were produced in September.

In their statement, the U.S. heads of churches, in the context of the Arab Spring, “recognize the complex and difficult situation regarding the current and future realities of the Middle East.” Beyond developments in the region, however, the church leaders voice their dismay “that the Obama administration has actively opposed Palestinian efforts to achieve a just resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through appeal to the United Nations.”

Click below for the full text of each communication (in PDF format):

Sept. 12, 2011 – Communique from the Heads of Christian Churches in Jerusalem

Sept. 30, 2011 – Response to Communique by Heads of Churches in the United States



Note:  The report pasted below is self-explanatory.  Also see: UN chief concerned over Israel’s plans for new settlements.  Also see:  The Mideast Quartet to Meet Next Week in Jerusalem.   Peace, Roy

Article by By Jonathan Ferziger, Oct 16, 2011 for www.businessweek.com…

Oct. 16 (Bloomberg) — The European Union criticized Israel’s plans to build more than 2,600 new homes in east Jerusalem, a project that Palestinians condemned.

“These initiatives run contrary to the current EU and Quartet efforts to bring about the resumption of peace negotiations,” Catherine Ashton, the EU foreign policy chief, said in a statement posted yesterday on her office’s website. “I deplore the decision by the Israeli authorities to advance the plan.”

The project at Givat Hamatos, north of Bethlehem, is the latest of several construction plans that Palestinians are fighting. The sites are located in parts of Jerusalem that Israel annexed after capturing them from Jordan in the 1967 Middle East war. Palestinians consider east Jerusalem to be the capital of a future state.

Palestinians condemned the Givat Hamatos project Oct. 14 after the Haaretz newspaper reported that Jerusalem municipal authorities invited public review of the plans for 60 days, a necessary step before authorizing construction. The Quartet, a diplomatic group comprising the U.S., EU, United Nations and Russia, has been trying to restart talks aimed at resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he won’t stop construction in east Jerusalem, which he maintains should be considered part of sovereign Israel, a position opposed by the U.S. and most countries. He has also refused to renew a 10- month construction freeze in the West Bank.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas says he won’t return to negotiations with Israel unless construction in both the West Bank and east Jerusalem is halted.

–Editors: Louis Meixler, James Kraus.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv at jferziger@bloomberg.net…

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net…



Thanks to Sami Joseph in the UK for sharing this cartoon which depicts the relativity of one’s frame of reference.  See my highlight.  Sami has raised an interesting philosophical question.   Peace, Roy

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