Friday, September 14, 2007

Shabbat Shalom 2 Tishrei 5768

A Holiday Miracle?
Prayer Book Finds Family over 50 years later

This past Wednesday night was a special evening for your brilliant blogger. Like millions of Jews around the world, my wife Shannon and I attended Rosh Hashana services at our synagogue. We were especially excited, since it was the first High Holiday service we would be attending at our new Shul.

As we arrived at Temple, we were greeted by fellow congregants as well as old and new friends. Hugs, kisses and wishes of a Happy New Year (Shana Tova), filled the Temple halls and sanctuary. My wife and I were handed prayer books from a stack of hundreds and then we proceeded to find seats.

What happened next was not a coincidence, but possibly a holiday miracle.

I opened my book and began reading the inside cover. Like most prayer books found in synagogues, the book was bought as a gift to the Temple, usually to honor or remember a family member. The book I was given was no different, with the exception it was donated by my Great Aunt and Uncle over fifty years ago.

My Great Aunt Ruth and Uncle Sid were one of the original founding members of Temple Beth Emet in Evanston, Illinois. This book, which was a revised edition circa 1946, was at some point replaced at that shul and donated to another congregation, finding it's way through the last half century to my current synagogue. I know this because the inside page had a printed label from Temple Beth Emet which read, Donated by Mr. and Mrs. Sidney C. Miller in loving memory of my father, Abraham H Miller. The date was September of 1955.

Abraham H. Miller is my great grandfather.

A prayer book donated by my great aunt and uncle to honor the memory of my great grandfather, ends up being used by the shul their great nephew joined 52 years later. During Rosh Hashana services to welcome in the year 5768, that book layed in a stack of hundreds and just happened to be handed to me on this special evening. Coincidence? Maybe, but think of the odds. A small miracle or a message from God? I don't know, but that is a stretch. A message from my loved ones who passed on? I do believe!

Audacity of Ignorance and Shame
Obama just dumb, Democrats smear troops

Barack Obama and his Democratic colleagues had a bad week. To their disappointment, the American public did not take too kindly to their bashing of General David Petraeus and his Iraq report before he had a chance to present it before two Senate committees. Obama and his Democratic colleagues running for President have also refused to condemn a full page advertisement in Mondays New York Times placed by the far left group, which pictured the four-star general and the words, "General Petraeus or General BeTray Us?"

Democrats have exposed their true feelings about progress in Iraq. Simply put, they don't want to see any. They have decided that political power is more important than the well-being of our troops at home and abroad. It is more important to hold up a white flag and be defeatists then to recognize any positive results and build on that success.

Do they not see how bashing a General, who has been deemed a man of impeccable character by everyone who has known or worked with him, can have a negative affect on our troops in harms way? Hearing that the man who makes life and death military decisions is a simple political pawn or is betraying America, is not exactly a confidence booster for our kids overseas.

After Petraeus spoke to the political whores in Washington, Obama, Clinton and Edwards went to work ripping the man to shreds. Obama decided to display his Jimmy Carter like incompetence by coming out with his own Iraq strategy, which includes calling for:

The muscle of the United Nations be used to help convene a new constitutional convention in Iraq to get the parties to agree how the country should look.

Muscle...United Nations, what the Hell is he talking about? When you look up the definition of "weak" in the dictionary, the UN building is pictured. Not to mention there is no larger bastion of anti-American sentiment than the United Nothings.

More diplomacy be used to draw other Middle East countries into the conversation about the region's future, and a regional compact should be considered. Also, There must be a greater humanitarian undertaking in the country itself, including creating a U.N. commission to punish war criminals.

Here we go again with the U.N. They would indict President Bush and Don Rumsfeld before they indicted any insurgence or Al Qaeda in Iraq leader. That is probably what Obama is hoping for.

As far a as diplomacy goes, we are already talking to everyone including the Iranians and Syrians. You can't have more diplomacy and if we did under an Obama or Clinton Presidency, it would eventually lead to trusting Iran to not turn Iraq into a terrorist training ground.

I have said numerous times, Obama is the second coming of Jimmy Carter. God help us!

As far as the shameful actions of the Democratic Party this week it did serve as an important reminder. No matter how angry I get at the GOP for failing to limit the size of government or push forward the cause of school choice, I take comfort that at least they don't want to loose the war in Iraq and understand the real threat to our freedom and way of life that exists from Islamic extremists.



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