21. Moses said to Aaron: "What did this people do to you that you brought [such] a grave sin upon them?" 22. Aaron replied: "Let not my lord's anger grow hot! You know the people, that they are disposed toward evil. 23. They said to me, 'Make us gods who will go before us, because this man Moses, who brought us up from the land of Egypt we do not know what has become of him.' 24. I said to them, 'Who has gold?' So they took it [the gold] off and gave it to me; I threw it into the fire and out came this calf." 25. And Moses saw the people, that they were exposed, for Aaron had exposed them to be disgraced before their adversaries. 26. So Moses stood in the gate of the camp and said: "Whoever is for the Lord, [let him come] to me!" And all the sons of Levi gathered around him. 27. He said to them: "So said the Lord, the God of Israel: 'Let every man place his sword upon his thigh and pass back and forth from one gate to the other in the camp, and let every man kill his brother, every man his friend, every man his kinsman.' " 28. The sons of Levi did according to Moses' word; on that day some three thousand men fell from among the people.
The time is coming, if it's not here already, that each one of us will have to take a side, and the earth will split (figuratively if not literally) such that there can be no straddling the fence and no going back. You should make sure you're on the right side.
If you've been reading BtB for a while, you know what I think is right and what side I'm on. I am in good company:
I learned that there is no more exquisite pleasure in life than reading Scupper the Sailor Dog to one's grandson when he's just had a bath and smells like soap. I can't imagine that even heaven can be as good as that.
In a surprise move, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met late Monday night with a senior Hamas delegation in his office in Ramallah. The unexpected meeting came amid reports about an impending prisoner exchange between Hizbullah and Israel.
.... He also testified that he gave Olmert more than $150,000 of his own money, but that part of it was to be repaid. He never received the money, including more than $4,000 he paid for a three-night stay by the Prime Minister and his wife at a Washington Hotel and $15,000 for a stay at the posh Regency Hotel in New York.
.... Talansky recounted meeting Olmert during the Gulf War, when he was Minister of Health. "We became close. I saw that he wanted to run for mayor of Jerusalem, that he believed in a strong, united city… I had great admiration for him. We used to call him 'the prince of Likud.' I truly loved him. The most important thing for me was the unity of Jerusalem," he told the court.
Talansky is giving the preliminary testimony before flying home to the US and will return to face cross-examination by the defense. The New York native admits to passing cash-filled envelopes to Olmert, though he reportedly says they were not bribes, as far as he knows.
Stay tuned to Carl in Jerusalem Israel. Oh whoops... maybe later, or tomorrow.
Dear Carl, I had mine at age 52, thank you very much. If the prep doesn't kill you, the procedure is a cinch. The results are what matter. Praying you get an A+.
(IsraelNN.com) An earthquake hit Iran Tuesday morning. The 5.3 magnitude earthquake struck the Zanjan province in northwestern Iran [less than 200 miles from Tehran -Yael]. No casualties were reported by Iran's state-run IRNA news agency.
Since Hillary has broken the ice and brought up Bobby Kennedy's assassination, and with the 40th anniversary of his murder coming up next week, I thought it might be useful to revisit the largely overlooked fact that his killer, Sirhan Sirhan, was a palestinian Arab.
.... From the time he was a child Sirhan had been indoctrinated in ideologies that are at the center of his murderous act. Sirhan's hatred had its roots in the milieu in which he was raised and the education he received. Later, as a young adult, Sirhan sought meaning to his increasingly hopeless life by embracing anti-Semitism, anti-Americanism and Palestinian nationalism.
As a child Sirhan had been taught by Arab teachers who instilled in him the principles of the Palestinian cause. They promoted the cause of Palestinian nationalism and made constant references to the great Arab warrior, Saladin, who had expelled the foreign crusaders from Jerusalem. Teachers would attempt to inspire their young students to fight for Palestinian rights.
During Sirhan's trial his mother related how the intense feelings of the Palestinians remained with the family even though they had been far removed from the conflict when they immigrated to America. She told of how her family had lived in Jerusalem for "thousands of years" and she spoke of the bitterness and hatred of the Israelis who had "taken their land." Mary Sirhan believed her son had killed Robert Kennedy because of his Arab nationalism. She said, "What he did, he did for his country."
.... In Sirhan's case, his parents taught him the Jews were "evil" and "stole their home." Sirhan's father, Bishara, regretted Kennedy's death but his hatred and contempt shone through in a statement he made to reporters in the days following his son's arrest. Bishara, himself a victim of Palestinian propaganda, said, "I can say that I do not regret his death as Kennedy the American politician who attempted to gain the presidential election by his aggressive propaganda against the Arab people of Palestine...Kennedy was promising the Zionists to supply them with arms and aircraft…and thus provoked the sensitive feelings of Sirhan who had suffered so much from the Jews…It is not fair to accuse my son without a full examination of Zionist atrocities against the Arabs – those atrocities which received the support and blessings of Robert Kennedy."
.... Following his arrest Sirhan told one of the court-appointed psychiatrists, George Y. Abe, about his political philosophy. Sirhan told him he was solidly anti-Zionist and disgusted at the way Jews in America had such a strong influence within the American political system. Sirhan said he believed Robert Kennedy listened to the Jews and he saw the senator as having sold out to them.
.... Robert Kennedy’s support for Israel dated from his stint as a journalist in 1948 when he traveled to the Middle East for the Boston Post to cover the Arab-Israeli war. That experience left him with an abiding admiration for the Israeli people and their leaders. He repeatedly voiced his support for Israel during his 1968 presidential campaign, though Sirhan apparently was unaware of that at first. But on May 27th a local Pasadena newspaper, avidly read by the Sirhan family, carried an article concerning the speech Kennedy had given the day before in Portland at a Jewish temple. The accompanying picture of Kennedy wearing a yarmulke carried the caption “Bobby Says Shalom.”
A clipping of an earlier column from this same newspaper, regarding Kennedy’s alleged contradictory positions on Vietnam and Israel, was in Sirhan’s pocket the night of the shooting.
“I did it for my country,” Sirhan said when he was arrested. “But America either didn’t listen,” Ayton writes, “or failed to understand.
As Yitzak Rabin, Israel’s ambassador to the United States at the time said, 'The American people were so dazed by what they perceived as a senseless act of a madman that they could not begin to fathom its political significance.'
Meanwhile, Sirhan’s murder of Robert Kennedy “was embraced, condoned, and applauded throughout the Arab world.”
One more thing (sorry, source is Crime Magazine again, but they seem to be the only people interested):
... in his journal, Sirhan declared, "Robert F. Kennedy must be assassinated by 5 June 68." That date was significant because it was the first anniversary of the Six-Day War...
.... While Judge Walker hastily sequestered the jury, Sirhan addressed the bench. "I, at this time, sir," he declared, "wish to withdraw my original plea of not guilty and submit the plea of guilty on all counts."
Walker: Do I understand that you want to plead guilty to murder in the first degree?
Sirhan: Yes, sir, I do.
Walker: What do you want to do about the penalty?
Sirhan: I will ask to be executed.
Repudiating his lawyers and demanding that they be fired, Sirhan spoke in quavering tones:
"I killed Robert Kennedy willfully, premeditatively, with 20 years of malice aforethought."