UN commends Israel on Gaza pullout


In a move described by the United Nations as a “rare gesture” to Israel, the UN Security Council issued a special press statement yesterday commending Israel on its implementation of the disengagement plan in Gaza and the northern West Bank. However, the statement also emphasizes the centrality of the road map and the expected pullout from Gaza, and the central role of the Quartet in the process.

The statement, signed by the President of the Security Council, Kenzo Oshima of Japan, says that “the members of the Security Council welcome the beginning of the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza and parts of the northern West Bank, and they commend the ongoing implementation of this process.”

Israel Confirms Plan to Seize West Bank Land
for Barrier

NY Times

Israeli officials confirmed Wednesday that the government had issued orders to seize West Bank land needed to extend the separation barrier around the largest Jewish settlement, Maale Adumim, and link it up to Jerusalem.

The Palestinian leadership said the developments confirmed its fears that Israel would try to use the Gaza withdrawal, and the international good will it has generated, to consolidate its hold on the large settlement blocs in the West Bank. Israel evacuated the last of nearly 9,000 Jewish settlers from Gaza on Monday, and cleared out two West Bank settlements on Tuesday.


At 10:30pm Tuesday night Shomrim were called to respond to an assault on Jewish boys on Eastern Parkway and New York Ave. when Shomrim arrived on the scene, they found there to be approximately 10 to 12 police cars parked there on the corner.

At 10:15, three Jewish teenagers walked into a grocery on the corner of New York Ave. to buy some drinks. They were then mugged at knife point but to the mugger’s regret, these boys were not going to let the mugger get away with it. The Jewish teens then chased the mugger and they both got into a fist fight. “He was too scared to use his knife, he was a wimp!” said one of the Jewish victims later after the incident. One of the three boys was arrested, and taken to the 71st pct. where he collapsed and lost consciousness and was taken to the hospital in handcuffs with police escort, in Hatzalah’s ambulance.

The Jewish community along with Crown Heights Shomrim are in an outrage. The police say that when they arrived on the scene they saw the Jewish teen punching the black kid, and that is why they arrested him. Shomrim were at the police station for hours after the incident arguing with the captain of the 71st. “the kid was mugged, and you arrest him?!” -Shomrim member. Another Shomrim member said, “you call [911] for blacks with knifes assaulting Jews and the police take their time, you call for Jews with knifes assaulting a black kid and look what happens-there were 15 [cop] cars on scene in seconds!!”

Members of the CHJCC were also at the 71st trying to get the kid out.

So far, it seems he will be released without further problems but we are still holding our breath.

Keep it locked to this website as we stay on top of this sad story of racism, violence, and hateful crime.

Bush Praises Sharon for Pullout

NY Times

BOISE, Idaho – President Bush praised Prime Minister Sharon on Tuesday for his “courageous decision” to withdraw from Gaza and parts of the West Bank.

“This is step one in the development of a democracy,” Mr. Bush said at a news conference here, adding that his administration would work with the Palestinians to help them consolidate their security forces in the coming weeks.

“It turns out that the post-Arafat regime is one of different factions and different security forces that were really in place to kind of maintain his power, but not necessarily to protect the overall security of the Palestinian people,” Mr. Bush said. “It’s in the interest to consolidate the security forces, so that the government has got a vehicle and a group of folks by which to help enforce order.”

Mr. Bush said the Palestinian government would have to build confidence that it would serve its people better and that a peaceful Palestinian state could emerge.

Israel Completes Pullout Ahead of Schedule

NY Times
After breaking into a house in Homesh, Israeli security men were met by Asaf Zoldan, holding his son Aaron.

SANUR, West Bank – Completing an emotional pullout unmarred by serious violence, Israeli soldiers and police officers finished their evacuation of 25 settlements in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank on Tuesday and said all settler homes would be reduced to rubble within 10 days.

Israeli officials and commanders have insisted that the evacuation of nearly 10,000 Israelis from all of Gaza and four settlements on the West Bank was providing a “hand to a brother,” not warfare at all. But its rapid conclusion in six days, after predictions of three weeks or more, took Israel by surprise and seemed a softer version of the Six-Day War of June 1967, when Israel won a lightning victory over Arab foes.

It was in that war that Israel conquered East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank and began building settlements for strategic, religious and economic reasons.

President of Medgar Evers College Honored

Yesterday the 2 camps Lubavitcher Yeshiva and Oholei Torah day camp took advantage of the beautiful weather and had a concert/rally outside Lubavitcher Yeshivas building on Crown Street.

The singing rabbi, R. Chaim Fogelman was the concert and the children danced at times to his music, and a community award was presented for “Outstanding Community service” to the president of the Medgar Evers Collage, Dr. Edison Jackson.

Dr. Jackson had arranged for the Lubavitch Yeshiva day camp to use the college’s pool throughout the summer.

R. (Col.) Goldstien presented Dr. Jackson the community award.

A Picture is worth a thousand words

Pics from AP
Israeli security forces scuffle with a resisting Jewish settler during the evacuation of the northern West Bank Jewish settlement of Homesh, Tuesday Aug. 23, 2005. Thousands of troops pushed into two northern West Bank settlements, Homesh and Sanur, Tuesday and began clearing out hundreds of extremists holed up inside, in the last phase of Israel’s dismantling of 21 settlements in the Gaza Strip and four in the West Bank. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

More pictures in extended article.

Christian Messianics Active in Crown Heights


Missionary material is being dispersed to homes of Crown Heights’ residents. COL has received warnings of several Crown Heights residents to alert the public to this. If you are approached with this material, make sure to tear it up and to alert the Shomrim patrol to take care of these intruders.

Fuel spill causes 16-mile backup on New York Thruway


A fuel spill on the New York State Thruway in Orange County caused a 16-mile backup on Monday afternoon.

The 80-gallon spill resulted from a tractor-trailer accident at 4:19 p.m. on Interstate 87 between Harriman and Sloatsburg, about 45 minutes north of New York City.

All southbound lanes and one northbound lane were closed until 7:40 p.m.

The accident occurred when 42-year-old Maria Astadjov of Quebec swerved to avoid debris while traveling northbound on the Thruway, said Trooper Manuel Rodriguez.

A van and tractor-trailer traveling behind her swerved to avoid a collision, sending the tractor-trailer through the median and into the southbound side of the highway.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, 54-year-old Thomas A. Spagnola of Hagaman, was taken to Samaritan Hospital in Suffern for minor back and neck injuries.

No charges have been filed, Rodriguez said.

Yet Another Fight Outside 770

At about 12:15am Monday night, Crown Heights Shomrim were called to respond to a violent situation at the entrance of the world Chabad Lubavitch headquarters, at 770 Eastern Parkway.

Upon arrival at the scene, Shomrim found two men arguing with a weapon found to be a pocket knife.

The two men were separated from each other as the members of Shomrim investigated as to what had happened.

Apparently, one of the men, who is black, had come to 770 to sell merchandise when a French Jewish man lost his “cool” because he did not want the man selling the merchandise inside the Shul. And so a fight broke out. That’s when Shomrim were called.

Relocated evacuees see themselves as refugees


When the bus that took them from Neveh Dekalim stopped in Ashkelon, police escorted the women, children and men into the gas station’s rest room. When they arrived at their hotel in Jerusalem, police escorted them inside. “As if we were criminals,” said Dror Vanunu, director of the Fund for Development of Gush Katif. Vanunu is a soft-spoken man, but his message was sharp, reflecting the general sentiment among the evacuees from the Gaza Strip, who have been put up at 25 hotels around the country.

Throw the Jew down the well

World Net Daily
By Vox Day

The people of Israel were cursed by foolish and evil rulers long before Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin shared a Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 with that late, great man of peace, Yasser Arafat. Time and time again, the Old Testament pronounces judgment on the kings of Israel with words that rumble like an ominous drumbeat: “He did evil in the eyes of the Lord and did not turn away from any of the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, which he had caused Israel to commit.”

More Jewish, less Israeli


Were it not for his age (he is already 60), Yohanan Ben-Yaakov could have been a “poster boy” for the classical-official religious Zionism that was once the partner of all Israelis. At least this seems true when one looks at his biography: He was born in Kibbutz Kfar Etzion before the 1948 War of Independence, the descendant of a family all of whose members, except for his father and uncle, were exterminated in the Holocaust. His father and uncle were killed in the battles for Gush Etzion in the War of Independence (he eventually chose the name “Ben-Yaakov” after his late father, Yaakov Klapholtz), and he became the scion of the family. In 1967, Ben-Yaakov was part of the first group of Kfar Etzion “natives” who returned to reestablish their community – not before confronting Hanan Porat and others, and insisting that they not establish it on their own initiative, but only after an official government decision was taken (which it eventually was) in favor of such a move.

A goodbye to Gaza

Settler from Brooklyn rages at being thrown from her beloved home

NY Daily News

I set the table with my best china. The guests were not invited, but I knew they were on their way.

When the Israeli Army soldiers showed up at my door Thursday, I told them I had cooked for them, expecting them to take seats and join my family.

But they had other plans. The soldiers led my family from the Gaza home we have known for 29 years straight to a bus, which delivered us to a tent city at the Western Wall.

So today, I am a refugee in my own country. As the 80 families of Netzer Hazani, Gaza Strip, approached the tent camp, we ripped our shirt collars as a sign of mourning.

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s order to dismantle 21 Jewish settlements in Gaza and four small ones in the West Bank after a 38-year occupation has forced me to leave the home I have known since 1976.

The evacuation is immoral and unnecessary. I do not believe that it will bring peace.

Keeping Shabbat: Lessons from an evening of ritual observance

My San Antonio

As sunset approached Friday, we watched men dressed in black and wearing yarmulkes, symbols of humility, coming from all directions along Blanco Road in north San Antonio, a neighborhood that is home to many of the city’s Orthodox Jews.

Women walked alongside the men as the workweek ended and the seventh day, the day that for 3,000 years has been the Jewish day of rest, approached.

The area also is home to Chabad Lubavitch of South Texas, a place of faith and learning where Rabbi Chaim Block serves as executive director. Block was a member of the Express-News’ 2002 advisory board, and since then has remained a friend and one of many links connecting our newsroom and the city’s Jewish community.

Monika, my wife, and I were among three couples who arrived in vehicles at the gracious Block home, which the rabbi shares with his wife, Rivkie, and their eight daughters and one son. It becomes a home to many more each Friday night as the Blocks prepare to keep Shabbat with an extended meal that must take all day to prepare.