Reality Check

In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 24, 2004 / 2 Nissan, 5764


By Paul Greenberg

A step by step guide to understanding a warped world | Here we go again. This script is getting so familiar that anyone can predict the next few days' news out of the Middle East. Or maybe the next year's.

The same succession of events takes place every time a distinguished terrorist meets a well-deserved end. There ought to be a name for the peculiar combination of rage, grief and general nostalgia for a homicidal leader that erupts whenever he himself is killed. Indeed, it already has a name: death worship.

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This time the Israelis caught up with Hamas' founding fanatic, Ahmed Yassin, deeply revered scholar and murderer. (No one is supposed to mention the last part.) Deeply moved, the crowds poured into the streets of Gaza to pay their last, raving respects.

The ululations, the blood oaths, the chants, the armed and masked men . . . what a made-for-television spectacle. A cast of thousands with Costumes From the East. A combination of a David Lean epic ("Lawrence of Arabia") and a scene from the Nuremberg Rallies transplanted to the desert sands. Leni Riefenstahl is no longer around to film the extravaganza, but Al-Jazeera is. Call it "Eyeless in Gaza."

The same succession of events always sets in, as if it had been choreographed beforehand. Call it eight degrees of separation from reality:

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First, the wire services and NPR make it clear that this was not a terrorist who was killed but a Spiritual Leader. After all, it wasn't as if he had been one of the suicide bombers himself; he only inspired them.

To quote the front-page story in The Wall Street Journal: "Mr. Yassin was a cleric renowned in the wider Muslim world and more a spiritual leader to Hamas than a hands-on plotter of terror attacks."

Think of him as a charismatic Hitler rather than a dull, hands-on Eichmann. Somehow that's supposed to have made him less dangerous. It isn't logical, but logic has nothing to do with it. This is the Middle East.

Second, the United Nations' Kofi Annan, who seldom if ever finds anything illegal when Israelis are blown apart, denounces the loss of said terrorist - excuse me, militant - as a crime against international law.

Third, the European Union seconds Kofi Annan's motion. After all, it speaks for a continent whose record on The Jewish Question is well established by now. Also, Europe has other friends and associates in the Arab world to appease now that it's lost Saddam Hussein.

Whatever the reasons, the Europeans' irritation with Israel for daring to strike back at one of the world's leading terrorists, or maybe just for existing at all, is palpable. Why can't these people go quietly, like the Czechs in 1938?

Fourth, other terrorist outfits fire a few rockets at Israeli outposts to demonstrate their sympathy. If the rockets are fired by Hezbollah from Lebanese territory, the sovereign government of Syrian-occupied Lebanon will protest - when the Israelis fire back.

Fifth, orators throughout the Arab world warn the infidels that now the Gates of Hell will open! (What, they were closed?)

Sixth, various analysts on the talk shows bemoan the loss of another Arab moderate, however immoderate his views. If no one will believe that Ahmed Yassin was a moderate, the description "pragmatic" may be used instead, however impractical his doctrine of jihad-by-suicide.

Seventh, the White House formally expresses Deep Concern in an attempt to distance itself from this attack on a terrorist leader - even as American forces are hunting down terrorist leaders in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and around the world. This is not duplicity but diplomacy, though it's not always easy to tell the difference. And it, too, has a familiar ring. (The Reagan administration officially deplored Israel's taking out Saddam Hussein's nuclear reactor in 1981 - while a relieved Ronald Reagan chuckled about it in the privacy of the Oval Office.)

Eighth and last, various distinguished pundits, Israeli masochists, and "friends" of the Jewish state now warn that by taking such hasty action against a leader of Hamas after all these years, the Israelis will just inflame the terrorists.

That last piece of advice always brings to mind the story about the two Jews who were being stood against a wall by a Nazi execution squad. Allowed a few last words, the first Jew curses his killers, telling them they will lose the war and roast in Hell and all their crimes will be avenged and . . . then he hears the other Jew whispering in his ear: Shush! You'll make them mad.

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JWR contributor Paul Greenberg, editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, has won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing. Send your comments by clicking here.

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