Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show returned after two weeks off the air by poking fun at the outcome of President Barack Obama’s recent trip to Israel and the West Bank, and lamenting the failures of past U.S. presidents in the peace process.
We are f***ing powerless: Jon Stewart takes aim at Obama’s Israel visit
The Daily Show’s take on the outcomes of U.S. President Barack Obama’s recent trip to Israel and the West Bank, and the failures of past American presidents on peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
Stewart mocked Obama’s Jerusalem speech, in which the president combined what Stewart described as “a stunning declaration of American support for Israel’s right to exist,” with a call for recognition of “the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination, right to justice.”
“An American president sketching out a path to an Israeli state, to a Palestinian state, why did no one think of this sooner?” Stewart quipped.
He went on to show footage of former U.S. presidents making similar assertions, including Geroge W. Bush Jr. in 2007, Bill Clinton in 1998 and George W Bush Sr. in 1991, before shouting out “We are f***ng powerless,” and pulling out a one dollar bill with a talking George Washington also repeating the two-state message.
“The point is this: Talk is cheap, and we have done that for years, so call me when there is actually some diplomatic progress,” Stewart said, before lambasting Obama’s big success of the trip – brokering the reconciliation between Israel and Turkey, “two countries nobody knew were fighting.”
“Gee, I can’t wait to see what happens with the Bosnia and Denmark situation.”
Stewart rounded off the clip by going to Senior Middle East Correspondent Aasif Mandvi, who filled him in on the mood in the West Bank after the breakthrough in the peace talks – between Israel and Turkey.
Pope Benedict Ends Pontificate, Leaving Papacy Vacant
Pope Benedict ended his eight-year reign on Thursday, becoming the first pontiff in six centuries to resign instead of ruling for life.
The papacy became officially vacant at 8 p.m. (1900 GMT/2 p.m. ET) in keeping with the pope’s wishes when he announced his decision to resign on Feb. 11.
The yellow and white papal flag was lowered and the Swiss Guard sentries withdrew from the entrance to the papal summer residence south of Rome as the massive wooden doors of the hilltop building were closed.
The pope flew there by helicopter less than three hours earlier.
Israel recruits ‘army of bloggers’ to combat anti-Zionist Web sites
Israelis who speak a second language to represent Israel on ‘problematic’ Websites in new Absorption Ministry program.
The program’s first volunteer was Sandrine Pitousi, 31, from Kfar Maimon, situated five kilometers from Gaza. “I heard about the project over the radio and decided to join because I’m living in the middle of the conflict,” she said.
Before hanging up the phone prematurely following a Color Red rocket alert, Pitousi, who immigrated to Israel from France in 1993, said she had some experience with public relations from managing a production company.
“During the war, we looked for a way to contribute to the effort,” the ministry’s director general, Erez Halfon, told Haaretz. “We turned to this enormous reservoir of more than a million people with a second mother tongue.” Other languages in which bloggers are sought include Russian and Portuguese.
Halfon said volunteers who send the Absorption Ministry their contact details by e-mail, at email@example.com, will be registered according to language, and then passed on to the Foreign Ministry’s media department, whose personnel will direct the volunteers to Web sites deemed “problematic.”
Within 30 minutes of announcing the program, which was approved by the Foreign Ministry on Sunday, five volunteers were already in touch, Halfon said.
October 31, 2012 at 07:46 (Humour)
HERE’S ONE FOR THE BOOKS ~~ RABBI’S BODY REMOVED FROM GRAVE BECAUSE ‘NEIGHBORS WERE NOT ON THE SAME SPIRITUAL LEVEL’
Family suspected in disappearance of ultra-Orthodox rabbi’s body from Jerusalem grave
The body was removed from the Sanhedria cemetery one night last week, without the knowledge or consent of the cemetery’s burial society.
The body of an ultra-Orthodox rabbi disappeared from his Jerusalem grave a few days ago, after eight years of undisturbed interment. The suspected culprits are the man’s own family, who apparently had the support of several leading ultra-Orthodox rabbis.
The body was removed from the Sanhedria cemetery one night last week, without the knowledge or consent of the cemetery’s burial society. The empty grave was only discovered on Monday.
The family, which belongs to an extremist splinter group of Bratslav Hasidim, had been demanding for some time that the deceased be moved away from his neighbors in the burial plot, on the grounds that said neighbors weren’t on his same “spiritual level.” Putting their father in such company, his children insisted, constituted “contempt for the dead.” Thus, they reburied him in the Mount of Olives, near his father’s burial plot.
“There’s no lack of crazies,” commented one of the directors of the burial society as he stood near the empty grave Monday.
The story was first reported on Kav Hahadashot, a Haredi telephone news service. The late rabbi, who died of an illness at a relatively young age, had bought his original gave himself. But according to Kav Hahadashot, his relatives were perturbed that he was buried next to a woman, and near others whose level of religious observance was “dubious.”
In fact, both the people buried next to the rabbi predeceased him, so he likely knew who they were, and evidently didn’t object.
What makes this story most remarkable, however, is that the family received permission to move the grave from leading rabbinic authorities, including the late Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, who died last month. Moving a body to another grave is rarely permitted under Jewish law, but Elyashiv, gave his consent before he was hospitalized about six months ago.
A video clip posted on the Haredi website Behadrei Haredim showed Elyashiv responding affirmatively when the family asked whether they are required to move their father’s bones from a place that constituted “contempt for the dead.” The clip is dated just five days before Elyashiv was hospitalized.
The video also shows another rabbi explaining to Elyashiv that after the man was buried, his relatives “suddenly saw that next to him were buried people who may have been Sabbath observant, but certainly weren’t careful about keeping the commandments. All the families come from terrible licentiousness.”
In addition to Elyashiv, the family also reportedly received permission from rabbis Shmuel Halevi Wosner, Yitzhak Tuvia Weiss and Eliezer Berland. Those three apparently approved the move some years ago, but their decision was bolstered when the rabbi’s father died and was buried on the Mount of Olives, as Jewish law considers it desirable to bury a man beside his father.
About six months ago, the family asked the Kehilat Yerushalayim burial society to move the grave, but it refused. Hananya Schorr, its director, told Haaretz that he knows the family approached at least one other Jerusalem burial society, but it also refused. Who finally did the job remains unknown.
Schorr said the burial society doesn’t plan to take any action against the family.
Osher Ad branch in Beit Shemesh removes notice asking women to dress modestly while shopping. ‘All we care about is offering the cheapest prices,’ says chain co-owner
The decision to remove the signs came a day after it was reported that the store handed out black gowns to women who did not comply with the modesty code, stirring anger among female shoppers. The Osher Ad supermarket chain removed signs posted in its Beit Shemesh branch, asking women to dress modestly while shopping in the store.
“Dear customers, when visiting Osher Ad, please help us respect all those who shop at our store by dressing modestly. Thank you for your cooperation,” the original sign read.
Beit Shemesh resident Sonia told Ynet that she came to Osher Ad after hearing of a new supermarket that offers reasonable prices. At the entrance to the store, the guard gave her and her mother black gowns. “He told me to put it on my shoulders and cover myself. I refused, so he said ”put it on your shoulders or else someone might have a heart attack.”
The sign and the gowns
Commenting on the sudden decision to remove the notices and stop handing out black gowns, Osher Ad co-owner Avraham Margaliot said the chain “loves all the people of Israel and only cares about selling cheap products. Signs or no signs – all we care about is offering the cheapest prices.
“We continue to respect the wishes of our customers and provide service to everyone according to their conscience,” he added.
A statement issued by the supermarket chain noted that “following customers’ requests, we decided to remove the sign temporarily in order to draft a version that is acceptable to the all our clientele.”