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March 23, 2018

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, MARCH 23, 2018 PAGE 5A consensus on By Stephen M. Flatow settlements will not Jerusalem will not bring our land. The Torah says it." this Palestinian Authority is our heroes, and they have bring peace, peace. Israel remains ruiner- moderate and really wants theirs." It's not a matter of (JNS)vJStreetandtheradi- "Now, some say there are Schumer: "And [the oh- able. peace." But it does not, de- "what they do is their busi- cal wing of the Democratic some who argue the settle- stacle to peace is] certainly A generation that has clared Schumer. hess." Glorifying terrorists Party have worked hard in ments are the reason there's not because we've moved the grown up with an Israel that The Palcstinian Author-encourages more terrorism. recent years to chip away at notpeace,"saidSchumer."But embassy to where it should seems almost invincible has ity actively supports "The P.A. as to stop calling the party'straditionalsupport we all knowwhat happened in belong in Yerushalayim [Je- to be reminded that creation terrorism, themmartyrs,"saidSchumer, for Israel. And they've made Gaza. Israel voluntarily got rusalem]. It's not that either." of a Palestinian state would it's not just that the EA. and "stop giving them pa- some progress, to judge by rid of the settlements there, Most Palestinians do not reduce Israel to just nine leaders are unreasonable and fades." recentpublicopinionpolls, in the Israeli soldiers dragged accept Israel's existence, mileswide, as itwas before the extreme;theydirectlysupport The leadership of the Dem- thechangesintheDemocratic the settlers out of Netzarim, The reason "why we don't 1967 Six-Day War. Schumer terrorism. "The dark truth," ocrats, as represented by Party platform and the num- and three weeks later, the have peace," Schumer said, is recalled walking through the Schumer said, is "that the Schumer, has now in effect ber of Democratic congress- Palestinians threw rockets "because thefactofthematter corridors of his high school Palestinian Authority, every joined hands with the leader- menwhohavesignedJStreet's into Sderot. It's sure not the is that too many Palestinians in Brooklyn that spring, day, actively aids and abets shipoftheRepublicans--and letters criticizing Israel. settlements that are the block- and too many Arabs do not his radio glued to his ear, terrorism." the majority of the American But a speech at the AIPAC age to peace." want any Jewish state in the "deathly worried that Israel The P.A.'s payments to public--when it comes to conference, made by the se- Giving more Israeli Middle East." would just be pushed into the terrorists must cease. Israel. nior U.S. senator from New lands to the Palestinians The Torah says the Landsea by the Arab onslaught The P.A. can't disguise its J Street and other harass- York, Chuck Schumer, has will not bring peace, of Israel belongs to the Now, the younger generation payments to imprisoned ter- ers of the Jewish state have struckapowerful blow against "Some say it's the borders," Jews. never experienced this. They rorists and the families of dead been left behind in the dust. A those trends in his party. As Schumer told the AIPAC Itmaynotbepoliticallycor- haven't lived through a time terrorists. It can't pretend powerful new pro-Israel con- the Senate Minority Leader, conference. "But they forget rect to acknowledge Israel's when Israel's very existence they are "social welfare" pay- sensus has been reaffirmed. he is the mostpowerful figure during the negotiations in biblical right to the Jewish was balanced on the edge of ments. It cannot route them I hope it continues to grow. intheDemocraticPartytoday. 2000, Ehud Barak was mak- homeland. But it's a fact that a knife." through a third party. What Stephen M. Flatow, a vice What he said to AIPAC has ing huge territorial conces- is acknowledged by millions The Palestinian Author-it must do, Schumer said, is president of the Religious established 10 principles of a sions that most Israelis didn't of Jews and tens of millions ity isn't "moderate." to "cease making payments Zionists of America, is an new American political con- like, it was [Palestinian head of Bible-believing Christians. The great myth of the Oslo to the families of terrorists." attorney in New Jersey. He sensus concerning Israel and Yasser] Ararat who rejected We don't have to feel embar- era was that the Palestinian Period. is the father ofAlisa Flatow, the Palestinian Arabs. And J the settlement. It's not the rassed to say it, just as the leadership genuinely made The P.A. must stop glori- who was murdered in an Street is far outside of it: borders, either." senator was not embarrassed peace and rejected terror- lying terrorists. Iranian-sponsored Palestin- Tearing down Jewish Making concessions on to say: "Of course, we say it's ism. "Too many believe that It's not a case of "we have ian terrorist attack in 1995. By Jonathan S. Tobin ian Authority responsible for law. American victims of the Palestinian Authority-- its support of terrorism, have Palestinian terror attacks, as the politicalarm of the PLO.A (JNS)--It turns out that been a long overdue breath of well as the family members of jury in a federal district court in some cases, the Trump fresh air. those who were killed in such heardvoluminousevidenceof administration can behave ~)n one significant legal is- attacks, originally filed the the gruesome crimes carried just like its predecessors, su~, however, it appears that case of Sokolow v. Palestine outbythePalestinians, aswell President Donald Trump Trump has gone establish- Liberation Organization in as the clear proof that these has been rightly accused of ment. Yet rather than cheer 2004. They sued under the acts were committed at the smashing precedents as the it as a rare sign of maturity Anti-Terrorism Act passed behest of their leaders. The commander-in-chief, and or stability, this decision is a by Congress in 1992, which jury ruled for the survivors manyofhissubordinateshave regrettable reversion to the allows U.S. nationals to sue and their families in a 2015 behaved, spoken and tweeted same sort of failed policies international terror groups decision that awarded them inwaysunlikeanythingwe've of the past that Trump has for damages in U.S. federal $656 million in damages. seen before. Some of this un- rejected in other instances, district courts. But aryear later, an appeals orthodox' behavior is indeed The issue is the decision of The SOkolow case s[ems court overturned that deci- troubling. But other deci- the U.S. Solicitor General to from six specific shootings sion when it ruled that U.S. sions, including his willing- side with the Palestine Lib- and bombings carried out courtsdidn'thavejurisdiction nesstobucktheforeign-policy eration Organization in a by Palestinians in Jerusalem in the case and claimed that establishment on issues like dispute with those seeking from 2002 to 2004 during the the Palestinians hadn't spe- the status of Jerusalem and to hold it accountable for its second intifada terrorist war cifically targeted Americans. trying to hold the Palestin- crimes as required by U.S. of attrition orchestrated by That caused the terrorists to cheer, and it brought great relief to the Obama admin- istration, which had opposed any effort to punish the PLO. It felt that anything that undermined the P.A. was, by definition, a blow to the cause of peace. Like all previous administrations, Obama and his team regarded the Anti- Terrorism Act to be an attempt by Congress to interfere with the executive branch's ability t conduct foreign policy. That stand, in additi in to the appellate ruling, contra- dicts the plain intent of the law, whichwas craftedspecifi- cally to deal with instances of international terror. Given Trump's tough talk on terror--reportedly, he yelled at and pounded the table when he demanded that P.A. leader Mahmoud Abbas stop paying salaries and pen- sions to terrorists and their families--you would think he would reject the Obama position. But that's not what happened. The Solicitor General is asking, along with the PLO's lawyers, that the U.S. Su- preme Court not hear the terror Victims' appeal. The government's arguments are highly technical in that they are asking the court to consider the PLO a "person," Tobin on page 18A to a elTl By Hanan Schlesinger rectives of the Torah is that rise against us to annihilate this division must never be us, and the Holy One Blessed (My Jewish Learning via so stark as to alienate the be He saves us from them." JTA)--Oneofthemostoft-re- us from the them. Our love The reason for this la- peated themes ofthe Torah is and concern must radiate cuna--at least one of the that we must remember that out beyond the us toward the reasons--may be that during wewere slaves and strangers them. Our sense of us must the 1,000-plus years during in the Land of Egypt, and empower our people to reach which the Haggadah text that God redeemed us with out to them. developed, we Jews were the an outstretched hand. Both We recall and relive our slaves and the strangers, and theexperienceofslaveryand experience in Egypt on the the dominant cultures were the experienceofredemption holiday of Passover, thecen- antagonistic to our way of are meant to radiate one cen- terpiece of the Jewish year life and often to our very tral and fundamental call to and the focal point of the existence. We were the other action that the Torah comes process of handing down the and little love was lost on back to again and again: tradition to the next genera- us. Our forefathers were too Slavery and strangerhood: tion. And the focal point of busy surviving to find room Love the stranger and care Passover is the seder night in our hearts and in our texts for him, provide for him and with its Haggadah text. The to teach ourselves about love show him empathy. Feel his Haggadah tells us: "In every of the stranger and empathy pain and act to alleviate it, generationonemustseehim- for his suffering. The larger deal kindlywith him, for you self as if he personally went message ofPassoverwas post- yourself know what it means out of Egypt." We spend the poned for the distant future. to be a stranger and a slave, whole night bringing alive That future may have Redemption: Walk in the the events of slavery and arrived. Reality today is footsteps of God, who re- redemption, different, in Israel and to a deemed us from Egypt, and Toward what end? What large degree in many parts redeem the slave and the is the takeaway? Clearly the of America, from that which downtrodden. Provide for answer ought to be to de- our forefathers knew. We them as God provided for velopwithinusthehistorical are no longer the other that us. Just as God's mercies are memory that will constantly we used to be, and there are upon all His creatures, so remind us and inspire us to other peoples, cultures and ought our mercies to be upon love the stranger and redeem ethnic groups that have taken all His creatures, him from his suffering,our place. In Israel we are The world is divided into Yet this message is corn- the dominant culture and in usandthem. Thatis theway pletely missing from the America we are part of the that it has to be. In order to Haggadah. It certainly harps mainstream. experience the security and on our misery in Egypt, but These are the conditions of the love of the family, the instead of using that experi- lifethattheTorahenvisioned, clan, thenation, there have to ence to nurture empathy for and not the circumstances be those who are not part of those who suffer, it sees in it under which our forbearers our inner concentric circles: aparadigm for the panorama have lived for the past 2000 At the same time, however, Jewish history, reminding years. As such, it is time for one of the most central di- us"in every generation they our Haggadahs and our cel- ebration of Passover, as well as our Jewish consciousness and our behavior, to reflect that change and to go back to basics. Let the seder be our forum to proclaim and inculcate an ethic of empathy for the other emanating from two inter- twined experiences: 1, Never again! Never again shall any people sufferwhatwe suffered in Egypt. And 2, we take it upon ourselves to continually struggle to redeem the other, just as God redeemed us. Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger lives in Alon Shvut, Gush Etzion, and serves as the director of international relations for Roots/Judur/ Shorashim, the Israeli Pal- estinian Local Initiative for Understanding, Nonviolence and Transformation. He also frequently travels to Dallas, where he serves as the ex- ecutive director of the Jewish Studies Initiative. His website is This piece appeared origi- nally on Rabbis Without Borders, a dynamic forum for exploring contemporary issues in the Jewish world and beyond. Written by rabbis of different denominations, viewpoints and parts of the country, Rabbis Without Borders is a project of Clal- The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. Exodus From Egypt