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PAGE 16A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JANUARY 4, 2013 Peres stirs passions with optimistic take on Abbas Israel Hayom Exclusive to JNS Israeli President Shimon Peres ignited a controversy by expressing optimism about the ability of Israel to reach a peace agreement with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. On Sunday, Peres made his statements about Ab- bas while addressing an event at the President's Residence in Jerusalem that was attended by 160 Israeli ambassadors and diplomatic representatives from around the world. "I have known Abu Mazen [Abbas] for 30 years and no one will change my opinion about him, even if they say that I can't express this opinion because I am president," Peres said. "The president should be allowed to evaluate people accord- ing to his experience. [Ab- bas] is a man with whom we can reach an agreement." Coalition Chairman Zeev Elkin (Likud) harshly criti- cized Peres on Monday. "You can easily dig through the archives and find that Peres made the same statements about Yas- ser Arafat," Elkin told the Kol Berama radio station. Elkin said that the job of the president is to appear impartial. Yonatan Sindel/Flash90 Israeli President Shimon Peres. "A few weeks before an election, [Peres] entered into the heart of the ideo- logical political debate in Israel, saying very sharp things and taking a side,!' Elkin said, adding that Peres had harmed the prestige of the presidency. Environmental Protec- tion Minister Gilad Erdan, head of the Likud party's election campaign, said, "It is truly unfortunate that the president would choose to express his personal po- litical opinions, which are so disconnected from the Israeli public's with respect to Abu Mazen, a denier of peace." In contrast to the Likud By Rabbi Rachel Esserman The (Vestal, N.Y.) Reporter Is it possible to fall in love with a country? Surrounded by the seasons and customs of a foreign land, can one ever feel at home? Nineteen- year-old Elise Landau and 20-something Lily Taub, the heroines of two recent novels, have very different reactions when they first arrive in Great Britain. In "The House of Tyneford" by Natasha Solomons (Plume), Elsie moves to England to escape from the Nazis in 1938, while in "In the King's Arms" by Sonia Taitz (McWitty Press), Lily, the daughter of Holocaust survivors, travels to Oxford in 1976 to complete an ad- vanced degree. Both women learn not only the difficulty of fitting into a new world, but how love can transform one's fate. party's strong response, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended Peres at a dedication ceremony for a new train station in Belt Shean on Sunday evening. "I respect the president and I appreciate him," Netanyahu said. "We meet often, including on Fridays. There are a range of opin- ions, and we exchange our opinions on many relevant current issues. This is how it has always been and this is how it will continue to be." The Prime Minister's Of- fice also issued an official statement Sunday night, saying the prime minister is "aware that the president has a desire to express his opinions on political is- sues and is not surprised by them." "But the prime minister believes that the president, especially just before elec- tions, is not supposed to say such things," the statement added. Vice Prime Minister Moshe (Bogie) Ya'alon (Li- kud) said: "The president does not need to get into political issues, thus I don't want to have to debate with him over politics. But I can already see other parties taking advantage of his sentiments, of course to attack us, as they often do in the international arena. The prime minister has tried from the outset of his government to get a diplomatic process mov- ing; he was even ready to do a 10-month settlement freeze. Butwe are not ready to kowtow to Palestinian demands which they call 'preconditions.' From this perspective, I think we proved to have a thought- ful, responsible and un- compromising policy with respect to the Palestinians. Unfortunately, they are manipulating the Israeli public." Peres clarified that he doesn't agree with Abbas's every word and every ac- tion, but he also said: "I know the reality that Abu Mazen is the only Arab leader who got up and pub- licly said that he supports peace and opposes terror. Abu Mazen's actions to prevent terror are brave to the extent of endangering his own life. Put yourselves in his shoes; you will dis- cover that his recognition of a solution to the right of return and the fact that he will not return to Safed, the city he was born in, were important and brave state- ments. There is little time. In terms of likelihood, this is the process that we can carry out today." Peres added: "We need to directly say that anyone who doesn't want a solu- tion involving two states for two peoples must offer an alternative solution. What can happen instead? What will Israel's future be? Otherwise, the reality will determine the solution, instead of us. A binational state endangers Zionism, Judaism and democracy in the State of Israel. I would like to live together as twins, but in such a small land deeply rooted in ha- tred, suspicion and cultural gaps it is impossible." Regarding Israel's status in the world, Peres said: "Our diplomatic goal has always been to recruit friends and not more en- emies. My life experiences have taught me that diplo- macy is an art and that it is possible. We must shift away from the militant ap- proach to the approach of moderate dialogue. What appears to be impossible will be possible if we act with intelligence." Left-leaning parties ex- pressed their support for Peres's sentiments, and used the comment as a platform for criticism of the Likud. "The Likud lashing out at the president, one of Jewish visitors to Britain Elise, the narrator of"The House of Tyneford," resists leaving her parents and sister in Vienna, although they assure her that once they receive their visas and settle in the United States they will send for her as soon as possible. Unlike her musician mother and sister, and her novelist father, Eiise has no special talents: the only way for her to leave the country is by seeking a posi- tion as a domestic servant. Elise's employer owns a grand estate in rural Eng- land, which takes her far from the city life she knows. The endless drudgery of be- ing a parlor maid in a house with not-quite-enough servants keeps her far busier and more tired than she thought possible. Even more difficult is finding a place for herself: she is un- able to fit properly into the role of a servant due to her YANMAN photography Weddings Bar & Bat Mitzvahs All Events & Simchas Timeless Images, Real Value. 407.341.3451 editor@yanman.com www.yanman.om Problems Have  Center for Counseling and Consulting 407.388.4738 www. perryklein, net middle class background. Yet, as a Jew, she can never be part of British society. When Kit, the heir of the estate, returns to Tyneford, the friendship they develop threatens to become some- thing more and jeopardizes Elise's position at the house. When World War II arrives, Eiise's fate and that of Tyn- eford become intertwined. Solomons, who wrote the wonderful "Mr. Rosenblum Dreams in English," has defeated the sophomore jinx by writing a work even better than her first. From its very first line-- "When I close my eyes I see Tyneford House"--readers are drawn into the novel's sweet and sad tale. While the absorb- ing plot keeps pages turn- ing, Solomon also success- fully creates a wide variety of believable characters, ranging from Elise's fellow servants to members of British society. However, Elise is her finest creation: Solomon not only shows her good points and bad, but how she matures, learning to better understand herself and those she loves. "The House of Tyneford" is also filled with lush de- scriptions that make one see the landscape through Elise's eyes. For example, when she first glimpses the countryside, she notes that, "to the right lay a lacework of silver rivers running through small green fields, spotted with the brown- and-white backs of cattle. Ponds glimmered like la- dies' hand mirrors, grow- ing larger as they rushed into the vast grey sea." The branches of towering trees resemble "a mass of clasping hands and limbs." Even better, though, are Solomons' descriptions of Elise's feelings. When wish- ing she wouldn't have to leave for England, it seems like "the days slid by. I felt them pass faster and faster like painted horses on a carousel." When frustrated by her inability to communicate, she acknowledges that "my lack of English imprisoned me in silence." One result of moving to Britain is that Elise finally identifies herself as Jewish. In Vienna, her parents were unobservant: "We never went to the brick syna- gogue on Leopoldstadt; we ate schnitzel in nonkosher restaurants, celebrated Christmas rather than Chanukah and were proud to be among the new class of bourgeois Austrians. We were Viennese Jews but, up until now, the Viennese part came first." While it might have been easy to deny her heritage, during the first meal with her fellow staff at Tyneford, she refuses to say amen to a Christian prayer. When asked why, she can only say, "I am a Jew." How she says it comes as a revelation: "The tone of my voice surprised me. Itwas strong and clear: an absolute declaration. I had never said those words before; I'd been driven out of my Vienna and across the sea because of them and yet I had never uttered them aloud." Her determination is so firm that no one men- tions again her refusal to say grace. While "The House of Tyn- eford" is definitely a work of fiction, underlying the tale are true stories. Elise is based on Solomons' great- aunt, who fled to Britain to work as a mother's helper. Tyneford is modeled after a village on the Dorset coast that was greatly affected by Perry Klein, MC, LMHC, NCC, CCMHC Psychotherapist, License # MH9964 Tncare Provider the symbols of the State of Israel, is aggressive and despicable," said Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yachi- movich. "Even under pres- sure, following a decline in the polls, does not give the Likud the legitimacy to damage the presidency." In response to Likud's claims that Peres's com- ments encourage inter- national condemnation, Yachimovich said, "It is a contemptible statement. Peres stops attacks on Israel with his own person and he is our best ambas- sador." Labor MK Isaac (Buji) Herzog also supported Peres. "President Peres decisively and clearly ex- pressed the need for dip- lomatic action, rather than declarations and words," he said. "The Netanyahu- Lieberman government has brought us to new heights of international isolation and stagnation that threat- ens the future of Israel as a state for the Jewish people." Hatnuah Chairwoman Tzipi Livni said Peres "acted with appropriate responsi- bility and told the public the truth about Israel's situation and its position." "This is how anyone who cares for Israel, certainly the president, should act," Livni said. the war. Soiomons captures the emotions'of the time in a story that resonates long after its final pages are read. While Elise longed to stay in Vienna or move with her family to the United States, the opposite is true for Lily in "In the King's Arms." She dreamed of visiting Britain, as "the Anglo-Christian empire had sunk its stake in her imagination as soon as she read 'Hamlet' (on a typical, schizoid yeshiva day in which she'd had Torah be- fore lunch and Shakespeare directly after)." It's not until she's seek- ing an advance degree that she is able to overcome her parents' resistance to foreign travel. At first, Lily feels out of place, realizing modern England is very dif- ferent from the country she envisioned. Fortunately, she is befriended by Peter Aiken, who introduces her to the "Pseuds," a group of pretentious undergraduates who argue about art and philosophy. When Peter invites Lily to spend Christmas with his family, she's surprised to find herself in the coun- tryside. Although she's already met--and been at- tracted-to his brother, Ju- lian, this is the first time she encounters Peter's mother, step-father and toddler half- brother. The visit goes well until Julian and Lily fall deeply and passionately in love, a love that upsets not only Julian's family, but Lily's sense of herself. Julian's mother, Helena Kendall, clearly dislikes Lily, even though she tries to hide it. She believes Lily is taking advantage of Julian because she's older and more established. Lily's Jewishness also cre- ates problems for Helena. She can't help thinking, for example, that "Jews always sighed. Caught up in their greedy yearnings. A portable people, the Jews. Always coming from heaven knows where. Fragile as dandelions, as impossible to get rid of. Tough, too. Planted in your sitting room. This siren plainsong could go on forever, with or without support." Although Lily might like to discard her Jewish heri- tage, the stories her parents shared about their experi- ences during the Holocaust have become part of her essential self. The section relating these tales is the most moving and shocking of the novel. Yet, Lily still feels a need to combine both worlds, the world of her parents and the world of Shakespeare. Even though Lily is 21 years old, her reaction to falling in love is more reminiscent of an adoles- cent. Both lovers act im- maturely, which cast doubts on whether or not their relationship can survive. Fortunately, the plot takes some unexpected turns and the novel's satisfying end- ing shows both main char- acters in a far better light. PAGE 16A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JANUARY 4, 2013 Peres stirs passions with optimistic take on Abbas Israel Hayom Exclusive to JNS Israeli President Shimon Peres ignited a controversy by expressing optimism about the ability of Israel to reach a peace agreement with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. On Sunday, Peres made his statements about Ab- bas while addressing an event at the President's Residence in Jerusalem that was attended by 160 Israeli ambassadors and diplomatic representatives from around the world. "I have known Abu Mazen [Abbas] for 30 years and no one will change my opinion about him, even if they say that I can't express this opinion because I am president," Peres said. "The president should be allowed to evaluate people accord- ing to his experience. [Ab- bas] is a man with whom we can reach an agreement." Coalition Chairman Zeev Elkin (Likud) harshly criti- cized Peres on Monday. "You can easily dig through the archives and find that Peres made the same statements about Yas- ser Arafat," Elkin told the Kol Berama radio station. Elkin said that the job of the president is to appear impartial. Yonatan Sindel/Flash90 Israeli President Shimon Peres. "A few weeks before an election, [Peres] entered into the heart of the ideo- logical political debate in Israel, saying very sharp things and taking a side,!' Elkin said, adding that Peres had harmed the prestige of the presidency. Environmental Protec- tion Minister Gilad Erdan, head of the Likud party's election campaign, said, "It is truly unfortunate that the president would choose to express his personal po- litical opinions, which are so disconnected from the Israeli public's with respect to Abu Mazen, a denier of peace." In contrast to the Likud By Rabbi Rachel Esserman The (Vestal, N.Y.) Reporter Is it possible to fall in love with a country? Surrounded by the seasons and customs of a foreign land, can one ever feel at home? Nineteen- year-old Elise Landau and 20-something Lily Taub, the heroines of two recent novels, have very different reactions when they first arrive in Great Britain. In "The House of Tyneford" by Natasha Solomons (Plume), Elsie moves to England to escape from the Nazis in 1938, while in "In the King's Arms" by Sonia Taitz (McWitty Press), Lily, the daughter of Holocaust survivors, travels to Oxford in 1976 to complete an ad- vanced degree. Both women learn not only the difficulty of fitting into a new world, but how love can transform one's fate. party's strong response, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended Peres at a dedication ceremony for a new train station in Belt Shean on Sunday evening. "I respect the president and I appreciate him," Netanyahu said. "We meet often, including on Fridays. There are a range of opin- ions, and we exchange our opinions on many relevant current issues. This is how it has always been and this is how it will continue to be." The Prime Minister's Of- fice also issued an official statement Sunday night, saying the prime minister is "aware that the president has a desire to express his opinions on political is- sues and is not surprised by them." "But the prime minister believes that the president, especially just before elec- tions, is not supposed to say such things," the statement added. Vice Prime Minister Moshe (Bogie) Ya'alon (Li- kud) said: "The president does not need to get into political issues, thus I don't want to have to debate with him over politics. But I can already see other parties taking advantage of his sentiments, of course to attack us, as they often do in the international arena. The prime minister has tried from the outset of his government to get a diplomatic process mov- ing; he was even ready to do a 10-month settlement freeze. Butwe are not ready to kowtow to Palestinian demands which they call 'preconditions.' From this perspective, I think we proved to have a thought- ful, responsible and un- compromising policy with respect to the Palestinians. Unfortunately, they are manipulating the Israeli public." Peres clarified that he doesn't agree with Abbas's every word and every ac- tion, but he also said: "I know the reality that Abu Mazen is the only Arab leader who got up and pub- licly said that he supports peace and opposes terror. Abu Mazen's actions to prevent terror are brave to the extent of endangering his own life. Put yourselves in his shoes; you will dis- cover that his recognition of a solution to the right of return and the fact that he will not return to Safed, the city he was born in, were important and brave state- ments. There is little time. In terms of likelihood, this is the process that we can carry out today." Peres added: "We need to directly say that anyone who doesn't want a solu- tion involving two states for two peoples must offer an alternative solution. What can happen instead? What will Israel's future be? Otherwise, the reality will determine the solution, instead of us. A binational state endangers Zionism, Judaism and democracy in the State of Israel. I would like to live together as twins, but in such a small land deeply rooted in ha- tred, suspicion and cultural gaps it is impossible." Regarding Israel's status in the world, Peres said: "Our diplomatic goal has always been to recruit friends and not more en- emies. My life experiences have taught me that diplo- macy is an art and that it is possible. We must shift away from the militant ap- proach to the approach of moderate dialogue. What appears to be impossible will be possible if we act with intelligence." Left-leaning parties ex- pressed their support for Peres's sentiments, and used the comment as a platform for criticism of the Likud. "The Likud lashing out at the president, one of Jewish visitors to Britain Elise, the narrator of"The House of Tyneford," resists leaving her parents and sister in Vienna, although they assure her that once they receive their visas and settle in the United States they will send for her as soon as possible. Unlike her musician mother and sister, and her novelist father, Eiise has no special talents: the only way for her to leave the country is by seeking a posi- tion as a domestic servant. Elise's employer owns a grand estate in rural Eng- land, which takes her far from the city life she knows. The endless drudgery of be- ing a parlor maid in a house with not-quite-enough servants keeps her far busier and more tired than she thought possible. Even more difficult is finding a place for herself: she is un- able to fit properly into the role of a servant due to her YANMAN photography Weddings Bar & Bat Mitzvahs All Events & Simchas Timeless Images, Real Value. 407.341.3451 editor@yanman.com www.yanman.om Problems Have  Center for Counseling and Consulting 407.388.4738 www. perryklein, net middle class background. Yet, as a Jew, she can never be part of British society. When Kit, the heir of the estate, returns to Tyneford, the friendship they develop threatens to become some- thing more and jeopardizes Elise's position at the house. When World War II arrives, Eiise's fate and that of Tyn- eford become intertwined. Solomons, who wrote the wonderful "Mr. Rosenblum Dreams in English," has defeated the sophomore jinx by writing a work even better than her first. From its very first line-- "When I close my eyes I see Tyneford House"--readers are drawn into the novel's sweet and sad tale. While the absorb- ing plot keeps pages turn- ing, Solomon also success- fully creates a wide variety of believable characters, ranging from Elise's fellow servants to members of British society. However, Elise is her finest creation: Solomon not only shows her good points and bad, but how she matures, learning to better understand herself and those she loves. "The House of Tyneford" is also filled with lush de- scriptions that make one see the landscape through Elise's eyes. For example, when she first glimpses the countryside, she notes that, "to the right lay a lacework of silver rivers running through small green fields, spotted with the brown- and-white backs of cattle. Ponds glimmered like la- dies' hand mirrors, grow- ing larger as they rushed into the vast grey sea." The branches of towering trees resemble "a mass of clasping hands and limbs." Even better, though, are Solomons' descriptions of Elise's feelings. When wish- ing she wouldn't have to leave for England, it seems like "the days slid by. I felt them pass faster and faster like painted horses on a carousel." When frustrated by her inability to communicate, she acknowledges that "my lack of English imprisoned me in silence." One result of moving to Britain is that Elise finally identifies herself as Jewish. In Vienna, her parents were unobservant: "We never went to the brick syna- gogue on Leopoldstadt; we ate schnitzel in nonkosher restaurants, celebrated Christmas rather than Chanukah and were proud to be among the new class of bourgeois Austrians. We were Viennese Jews but, up until now, the Viennese part came first." While it might have been easy to deny her heritage, during the first meal with her fellow staff at Tyneford, she refuses to say amen to a Christian prayer. When asked why, she can only say, "I am a Jew." How she says it comes as a revelation: "The tone of my voice surprised me. Itwas strong and clear: an absolute declaration. I had never said those words before; I'd been driven out of my Vienna and across the sea because of them and yet I had never uttered them aloud." Her determination is so firm that no one men- tions again her refusal to say grace. While "The House of Tyn- eford" is definitely a work of fiction, underlying the tale are true stories. Elise is based on Solomons' great- aunt, who fled to Britain to work as a mother's helper. Tyneford is modeled after a village on the Dorset coast that was greatly affected by Perry Klein, MC, LMHC, NCC, CCMHC Psychotherapist, License # MH9964 Tncare Provider the symbols of the State of Israel, is aggressive and despicable," said Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yachi- movich. "Even under pres- sure, following a decline in the polls, does not give the Likud the legitimacy to damage the presidency." In response to Likud's claims that Peres's com- ments encourage inter- national condemnation, Yachimovich said, "It is a contemptible statement. Peres stops attacks on Israel with his own person and he is our best ambas- sador." Labor MK Isaac (Buji) Herzog also supported Peres. "President Peres decisively and clearly ex- pressed the need for dip- lomatic action, rather than declarations and words," he said. "The Netanyahu- Lieberman government has brought us to new heights of international isolation and stagnation that threat- ens the future of Israel as a state for the Jewish people." Hatnuah Chairwoman Tzipi Livni said Peres "acted with appropriate responsi- bility and told the public the truth about Israel's situation and its position." "This is how anyone who cares for Israel, certainly the president, should act," Livni said. the war. Soiomons captures the emotions'of the time in a story that resonates long after its final pages are read. While Elise longed to stay in Vienna or move with her family to the United States, the opposite is true for Lily in "In the King's Arms." She dreamed of visiting Britain, as "the Anglo-Christian empire had sunk its stake in her imagination as soon as she read 'Hamlet' (on a typical, schizoid yeshiva day in which she'd had Torah be- fore lunch and Shakespeare directly after)." It's not until she's seek- ing an advance degree that she is able to overcome her parents' resistance to foreign travel. At first, Lily feels out of place, realizing modern England is very dif- ferent from the country she envisioned. Fortunately, she is befriended by Peter Aiken, who introduces her to the "Pseuds," a group of pretentious undergraduates who argue about art and philosophy. When Peter invites Lily to spend Christmas with his family, she's surprised to find herself in the coun- tryside. Although she's already met--and been at- tracted-to his brother, Ju- lian, this is the first time she encounters Peter's mother, step-father and toddler half- brother. The visit goes well until Julian and Lily fall deeply and passionately in love, a love that upsets not only Julian's family, but Lily's sense of herself. Julian's mother, Helena Kendall, clearly dislikes Lily, even though she tries to hide it. She believes Lily is taking advantage of Julian because she's older and more established. Lily's Jewishness also cre- ates problems for Helena. She can't help thinking, for example, that "Jews always sighed. Caught up in their greedy yearnings. A portable people, the Jews. Always coming from heaven knows where. Fragile as dandelions, as impossible to get rid of. Tough, too. Planted in your sitting room. This siren plainsong could go on forever, with or without support." Although Lily might like to discard her Jewish heri- tage, the stories her parents shared about their experi- ences during the Holocaust have become part of her essential self. The section relating these tales is the most moving and shocking of the novel. Yet, Lily still feels a need to combine both worlds, the world of her parents and the world of Shakespeare. Even though Lily is 21 years old, her reaction to falling in love is more reminiscent of an adoles- cent. Both lovers act im- maturely, which cast doubts on whether or not their relationship can survive. Fortunately, the plot takes some unexpected turns and the novel's satisfying end- ing shows both main char- acters in a far better light.