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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Chabad Merkos 302: Fighting From Within

Guest Post by Joshua Nass

We all recall how our community felt after the news of the Pew Research Center’s “A Portrait of Jewish Americans” was released. The question was continuously posed. What should be done to combat this troubling trajectory? What can be done? As the Pew study revealed, the intermarriage rate among the non-orthodox segments of our community are at a staggering high, with 71.5% of non-orthodox American Jews marrying outside their faith.

The Pew study established that the nonorthodox Jewish population is becoming smaller and smaller. An even scarier statistic was that only seventeen percent of children from interfaith marriages marry Jewish. These are devastating numbers and we must do all we can collectively to reverse this trajectory. The proper remedy to this problem is to cultivate and breed the next generation of ambassadors and advocates of traditional Judaism. We must commit ourselves to outreach to the unaffiliated and take a “big tent” approach in doing so.

This strategic approach must start with our community’s youth and Chabad’s Merkos 302 is doing just that. They’ve developed a global Jewish youth network that promotes and instills Jewish values in the next generation of Jewry. CTeen, their global teen network has one hundred fifty chapters worldwide and reaches a staggering ten thousand teenagers from diverse backgrounds weekly. The events that are put together through this program are nothing short of remarkable. This past December members of the CTeen network’s 34 tri-state chapters participated at the Brooklyn Nets’ Jewish Heritage Night sharing the lights of Chanukah with the thousands present at the Barclays Center. It’s this type of event that’s ultimately needed to ignite the fire of our community’s youth.

On February 24th of 2015, the network’s annual convention was held with over 1,500 Jewish Teens from around the world gathering in Crown Heights and Times Square to make their voices heard loud and clear. The CTeen network is the fastest-growing Jewish teen organization in the world. The convention honored those Jewish teens that are making invaluable contributions to their respective communities around the world. At the convention, there was representation of teens from Hong Kong, Brazil, France, England, Australia, Germany, Singapore and many more countries worldwide.

With our people coming under attack worldwide with the unfortunate rise of anti-Semitism, the most effective way of combatting this issue is by instilling a sense of Jewish pride in Jewish youth worldwide. In this spirit, Chabad’s Global Jewish Youth Network launched a “Share the Lights” campaign, encouraging young Jews to enjoy and share the lights of Chanukah with others. We cannot let the light of our people diminish. We must do everything within our power to ignite the flame of the Jewish people so that it is powerful as ever and Merkos 302 has committed themselves to doing just that.

For Passover, Merkos 302 is continuing to develop innovative programs to ensure that as many Jews of all ages are experiencing the beauty of the holiday. They developed an app to help facilitate Jews worldwide in their search of a Passover seder. The “Chabad Link” app is yet another example of a Jewish communal leadership initiative that Merkos 302 has embarked on to ensure our community’s tent becomes bigger than ever. Utilizing technology to facilitate Merkos 302’s quest of combatting anti-Semitism and promoting Jewish continuity is exactly within the contemporary spirit that must be used to have this enormously positive influence.

There are many organizations with the mission of promoting Jewish continuity and they should be commended for investing their efforts into this incredibly important and noble goal. I would urge each and every one of them to turn to Merkos 302 as a model. Led by Rabbi Mendy Kotlarsky, this organization has launched programs that have already effectuated enormously positive change and they are just getting started. I urge everybody to watch this rapidly growing organization’s work and to get involved anyway you can!

Chag Kasher V’Sameach to all.

Saudi Defense Minister Warns Congress 'Iran Cannot Be Trusted'

Defense Minister of Saudi Arabia Prince Mohammed bin Salman

While many liberal commentators are complaining that the Speaker Boehner-led trip to the middle east is simply a politically divisive trip to Israel, but the Republican delegation is meeting with many U.S. allies in the area.  On Monday staffers of the congressional delegation  they met with Egypt and learned about Egypt's frustration with Obama's reluctance to support their war against terror, which seems to have been changed a bit with yesterday's announcement about allowing sales of jet fighters to Egypt.

Also on Monday, a congressional delegation met with the new Defense Minister of Saudi Arabia Prince Mohammed bin Salman who happens to be the son of the new king.  The Prince gave the Congress members a strong warning--do not trust Iran!

Representative Vern Buchanan issued a press release about the meeting:
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia – U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-FL, part of a congressional delegation in the Middle East this week, questioned the new Saudi defense minister Monday about nuclear talks between Iran and the U.S.

He said Iran can’t be trusted,” Buchanan said after meeting in the Saudi capital of Riyadh for more than an hour with Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the defense minister and son of the King of Saudi Arabia. “He questioned why we would be negotiating with the Iranians when they are responsible for growing tension in the Middle East.”

“I asked the Prince what he thought about the discussions between the U.S. and Iran, and he responded that he doesn’t think the United States is taking the threat posed by Iran seriously,” Buchanan said. “He said the Saudis would also like more military assistance from the U.S. to combat Iran’s growing influence in the region.”

Buchanan also noted that in their conversation, Prince Salman expressed deep concern about the close partnership between Iran and Russia.

After the death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah earlier this year, the throne was passed to King Salman who then appointed his 34-year-old son Mohammed to the dual role of defense minister and chief

Newsbusted: Obama Was Going To Award Bergdahl The Medal Of Honor

Last week week the Army finally decided to charge Sgt Bowe Bergdahl with desertion. Perhaps the person most disappointed with the charges against the man whose freedom was gained via a trade for five senior Taliban leaders is President Barack Obama.  According to Newsbusted anchor Jodie Miller just before the announcement the President had decided to award Bergdahl with the nation's highest military honor, The Medal of Honor.

Other news items covered in the latest installment of Newsbusted the weekly faux news feature from (embedded below) include; the Democrat's response to the Ted Cruz announcement; the Starbucks race effort; the growth of atheism in America;and much, much more.

Please make sure you watch the video below because something bad always happens to the people who don't. Last week Hillary Clinton forgot to press play and ever since there has been a daily drip of new revelations from the email scandal. So if you don't want the NY Times reading your email better press play.

And if you can't see the video player below please click here

New Poll Indicates Email Scandals Eroding American Voters' Trust In Hillary

According to the latest Quinnipiac University’s Swing State Poll former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's support is eroding as a result of her lack of openness regarding the private email server she was using during her term at Foggy Bottom.

The Swing State polls three key states, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. Since 1960 no candidate has won the presidency without winning at least two of these three states.

While those polled do not want a congressional investigation of Hillary's emails, most voters believe Clinton is not honest and trustworthy,  in Florida by a margin of 50 - 41 percent and Pennsylvania voters by a 49 - 44 percent margin. Ohio voters are divided as 47 percent say yes and 46 percent say no.

More than 50 percent of voters in each state believe that there are serious questions remaining about her emails (56% in FLA., 52% OH., 55% PENN.) Fifty-one percent of Florida and Ohio voters and 52 percent of Pennsylvania voters said that Clinton’s use of a personal email address for official State Department business was “very important” or “somewhat important” to consider when voting for President in 2016. And a significant 38 percent of Florida voters, 36 percent of those in Ohio and 41 percent of Pennsylvania voters say they are less likely to vote for Ms. Clinton as a result of the scandal

As reported by the Washington Times:
Mrs. Clinton lost ground in hypothetical matchups against every potential Republican rival in the bellwether states of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania in the wake of an email scandal and other controversies that erupted last month, Quinnipiac University’s Swing State Poll found.
The closest contests are in Florida, where former Gov. Jeb Bush tops Mrs. Clinton 45 percent to 42 percent, and in Pennsylvania, where Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky narrowly beats her 45 percent to 44 percent, according to the poll.

Mrs. Clinton had the lead in both matchups in the same poll Feb. 2.

In Ohio, Mrs. Clinton topped Mr. Paul 46 percent to 41 percent. That is a significant tightening of the race since the February poll, when Mrs. Clinton had a 12-point advantage over Mr. Paul, 48 percent to 34 percent.

The former secretary of state, senator and first lady still beats every Republican in the Buckeye State, though by smaller margins than in February.

Mrs. Clinton also has lost the double-digit leads she once held over most Republicans in all three states. Her only double-digit leads now are in Ohio over Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, 48 percent to 38 percent, and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, 49 percent to 38 percent.
With Election Day 2016 eighteen months away--so much can happen to change these numbers one way or the other. There are two important points to take away. First the email scandal is eroding Hillary Clinton's standing amongst American voters and the scandal about the donations to the Clinton Foundation hasn't hit yet.  The drip, drip of scandal surrounding Ms. Clinton may end up really hurting her.

The second thing to understand is about the polls vs. other candidates.  Hillary's recognition is above 90% in all three states, while it can be assumed that recognition of the GOP candidates are much, much lower.  This gives those candidates an opportunity to define themselves and gain popularity while Ms. Clinton is busily wiping the stain of scandal off her reputation. But Republicans should beware, the Dems are excellent in creating false images of GOP candidates just witness what they did to Mitt Romney.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Palestinian Grade School Lesson: 'Fight The Jews, Kill Them, And Defeat Them'

While U.S. President Barack Obama continues to attack Israel and its Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for comments he never made, the supposedly moderate Palestinian Authority continues to incite hatred against all Jews inside and outside of Israel. The latest statements come from the official Palestinian Authority TV station, where a reporter explains how the PA Ministry of Education teaches children to hate.
PA TV reporter: “Instilling the culture of boycotting occupation products in the hearts of children and adolescents was the goal that led the [PA] Ministry of Education to place this issue at the center of all school activities throughout the homeland... Through creative activities, [students] expressed different views about support for national products and resistance through boycott.”

Boy participating in the theater contest at a school in Hebron: “I came to rehearse the play in order to boycott Israeli products and fight the Jews, kill them, and defeat them. The goal is to boycott Israeli products.”