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Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, 18th day Of Av, 5742, the following scriptural selections will be read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portion., Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25.
Prophetical portion, Isaiah 49:14-51:3.
Candlelighting, Friday, Aug. 6, 8:27 p.m.
VOL. Mai, No. 23
Friday, Aug. 6, 1982
AN END TO INDIFFERENCE
Problems bathed in agonies which have af-
fected the situation in the Middle East and Is-
rael's role in it must eventuate from the current
crisis into proper solution and the necessary
neighborly cooperation of the Jewish state with
what is now an antagonistic Arab world sur-
Warfare in Lebanon can not last much longer,
and in its aftermath there will be the postponed
consideration of the autonomy proposals for
Arabs in Israel-occupied territory.
The issue has been muddied all-too-long, and
the question has often been raised whether an
indifference towards Israel's fate is all-too-
Out of the present turmoil there must come a
relief from such anxieties.
Hope for positive approaches, for refutation of
the charge of indifference, was on the agenda
some days ago when two highly-respected
women leaders spoke out for justice in the Mid-
dle East, for a proper approach to the solution of
the existing problems that had become aggra-
vations for Israel and for Jewry.
New York Times Op-Ed Pages carried many
essays antagonistic to Israel. Viewpoints by
some Jews, articles by men like George Ball,
former U.S. assistant secretary of state who has
never evidenced the desired friendship for Is-
rael, and many others, have not been helpful in
resolving the multiple issues.
Therefore, two of the most recent NYTimes
Op-Ed Page articles, by Pulitzer Prize winner
Barbara Tuchman and Rita Hauser, provide
comfort in the knowledge that indifference is
The Tuchman essay, "A Task for Arabs," is
especially noteworthy. Mrs. Tuchman details
the background of the problem involving the
issue labled "Palestinians," and puts to rest the
claims that there are millions of Arabs who
were expelled from Palestine when the Jewish
state was proclaimed. She indicates the truth,
that about 500,000 Arabs left what became Is-
rael, contrary to advice to remain in the appeal
to them by the new state of Israel. Thereupon
To survive in the present Middle East — and
if there is one thing beyond discussion it is Is-
rael's intention to survive — they have not been
allowed to be peaceful; they have succumbed to
aggression. The invasion of Lebanon seems to
me out of proportion. I do not like it and do not
think it the wisest course, but I think I under-
"Let us place the responsibilitty for a solution
where it lies rather than indulge in holier-
than-thou pomposities about Israel as a world
menace. Let the Arabs solve the problem of the
Then there is the essay by Rita Hauser, who is
identified as an international lawyer and a vice
president of the American Jewish Committee,
who analyzed the current situation in her essay
"The PLO and Israel: A Policy for U.S." It is an
analytical review of a condition that has been
marked, by many misunderstandings and ag-
gravations. Miss Hauser also has sound advice,
based on factual experiences, and in it she pro-
vides the facts necessary for proper pragmatic
approaches to the aggravated issues:
"Lebanon must be demilitarized and neut-
ralized, with its borders protected by an inter-
national force. Its large Palestinian refugee
population finally must be dispersed by absorp-
tion both within and outside Lebanon.
"Such a task can be accomplished only by
convening an international conference under
the leadership of the United States . . .
"Lebanon could absorb and naturalize a
stated number who wanted to remain there as
"Israel could permit settlement in the West
Bank and Gaza of those with immediate rela-
tives living there now, as provided in the family
reunification provisions of the Camp David ac-
"Syria and Jordan could accept a certain
number as permanent residents, in addition to
granting such status to those refugees now in
"The United States, France, Canada and
other protector countries, as well as some of the
Persian Gulf countries, could accept the balance
in an equitable manner, to be resettled as per-
"By dispersing the Palestinian refugees, the
problem would be pierced . . ."
There is a wholesomeness in both essays not
to be ignored. Hopefully, the State Department
and White House will take into account the
views of these two eminent historians and objec-
tive students of the existing situation.
As indicated, the significance of these essays
is in their authorships. They provide comfort in
the knowledge that indifference does not domi-
nate the situation, that there are Jews of emi-
nence who are concerned lest untruth should
continue to muddy the situation at hand.
The concern over indifference is the manner
in which a so-called divisiveness in Jewish
ranks has been emphasized by the media. Of
course, there are Jews, and they include names
of prominence, who had joined militant ele-
ments who have attacked Israel's policies. It is
the united effort of Jewry that is of major con-
cern. Tuchman and Hauser contribute toward
such unification. _
Philanthropy is a compulsion and the appeals
now made for financial support for Israel are
The academic forces must be heard from. Si-
lence can be criminal. The approaching deliber-
ations over events in the Middle East could af-
fect the fate of Israel. Israel was not reborn to be
committed to destruction.
There has never been a lack of interest in
Israel's status and concern over her security in
Congress. Of late there has been an avalanche
of pressure from many quarters, with reports
that the sentiments in the nation were running
overwhelmingly against Israel. In that connec-
tion there was claim of a serious erosion in Con-
gressional friendships for Israel. These reports
now prove to be exaggerations, and there is,
therefore, the added satisfaction that indif-
ference may be greatly reduced on all scores and
in the most important quarters.
Effect of Yiddish Idiom
Seen in 'Jewish Word Book'
Lovers of Yiddish and the Yiddish idiom will be especially de-
lighted with "The Jewish Word Book" by Rabbi Sidney J. Jacobs
(Jonathan David Publishers).
Already reviewed in this column July 2, the book merits an
additional review, especially because of the expressive idioms.
An especially illustrative element is the following in which the
Jew in the shtetl could express his anger without losing his composure
and at the same time resorting to a bit of irony:
"My preference for an example of malediction, which has not lost
its vividness over the 45 years since I first read it, was splashed in a
four-column headline in the Chicago Yiddish Courier (1887-1944)
over a photograph of Nazi Field Marshal Herman Goering, head of
Hitler's Luftwaffe, beaming at his wife as she held their newborn son.
"Characteristic of the personal quality of Yiddish journalism, the
headline read, A Ruach Ihn Zain Taten Arain! Awmein! (Way an Evil
Wind Enter His Father! Amen!'). The concluding word was in keeping
with the Yiddish wish, 'From your mouth into God's ear!"
"At one time reviled as the jargon of the Jewish masses of Eastern
Europe, Yiddish has revealed a capacity for dimension and adapta-
tion that never ceases to astonish: yentuh traces her roots to the sultry
Spanish Juanita, possibly to the French Gentille; bobe-maise derives
from Buovo d'Antona, the Italian version of Sir Bevis of Hampton!
"In sum, Yiddish is a language of infinite variety. The late and
sorely-missed folk humorist Sam Levenson used to compare the En-
glish paucity of 'ugly . . . uglier . . . ugliest' with the rich Yiddish
sequence of `mies . nihsht duh gedacht . . . chaliihshes' (`ugly . . . it
shouldn't happen here . . . one may faint!').
"I shudder when I consider how close I came as a child to the
precipice of life without intimacy with Yiddish, once described by a
West Coast theater critic as 'that peculiar mixture of German and
Hebrew designed to maximize the expression of pain and joy at once." "
While much in this volume is anecdotal, the effect as a dictionary
is expressive, as in the following examples:
Followers of seventeenth-century pseudo-messiah
Sabbatai (Shabbetai Tzevi).
1. Literally, "a cactus."
2. A native Israeli, reputed to be like a cactus, tough on the outside,
sweet on the inside.
(a) sach tzoo redn
Also spelled (a) sach tzu reden.
Much to talk about.
(a) sach tzoo redn, vei-nihk tzoo her-en
1. Literally, "much to say, little to be heard."
2. Talk devoid of substance.
Also Ta-a-niht Es-ter.*
Also spelled Taanit Esther.
Literally, "the Fast of Esther," observed on the day
preceding Purim, recalling Esther's intercession
with her husband, King Ahasuerus, to nullify
Pentitenital prayers recited diirini the weekday