Monthly Archives: May 2018

Hillel Neuer Of UNWatch.Org At The UN


Hillel Neuer Of UNWatch.Org At The UN (Randyjw; May 30, 2018)



Comments Off on Hillel Neuer Of UNWatch.Org At The UN

Filed under Uncategorized

UN Conference On Disarmament – Headed By Syria?


UN Conference On Disarmament – Headed By Syria? (Randyjw; May 30, 2018)


Like a fox in the henhouse….


Read here:



Comments Off on UN Conference On Disarmament – Headed By Syria?

Filed under Uncategorized


Fuming (Randyjw; May 26, 2018)


You know there’s a first-world problem

If the difference you can’t tell

between a pest-infested

arc-sprayed rotunda

and the smell of a

garlicky szechuan


Comments Off on Fuming

Filed under Poetry

Bernard Lewis z”l

Bernard Lewis z”l (Randyjw; May 23, 2018)



The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI); Arab Writers On Renowned Historian Prof. Bernard Lewis (1916-2018); Special Dispatch No. 7517; June 12, 2018


Comments Off on Bernard Lewis z”l

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Shavuot 2018

Happy Shavuot 2018 (Randyjw; May 20, 2018)



Comments Off on Happy Shavuot 2018

Filed under Uncategorized

In Absence Of Touch

In Absence Of Touch (Randyjw; May 18, 2018)


More than a whisper

enveloped in your presence

strong, each encounter


Comments Off on In Absence Of Touch

Filed under Poetry

Temple Mount Sifting Project

Photo not representative of actual artefacts

Temple Mount Sifting Project (Randyjw; May 18, 2018)


The Temple Mount Sifting Project is an important archaeological undertaking to recover artefacts as yet-to-be-unearthed in the 9,000 tons of dirt removed illegally from around Solomon’s Stables by the Muslim Waqf and dumped into the Kidron Valley.


I was fortunate to have been given a ride to the site by one of the founders of the project, Zachi, and to have been able to take part in this very touching facet of Jewish history, associated with one of our most iconic sites and structures bespeaking Jewish ancestry: the Holy Temple. The other of the Project’s founders, Gabi Barkai, is one of my favorite teachers from my archaeological- and tour-guiding courses.


Israel is a small country, and we remain a miraculous improbability in terms of our existence. Yet, by G-d, we do.


You can sign up for their newsletter, if you’d like, at their crowdfunding site, here:


Comments Off on Temple Mount Sifting Project

Filed under Uncategorized

Hands In Front Of The Fireplace

Hands In Front Of The Fireplace (Randyjw; May 17, 2018)


In the litany unearthed of words

the decrepit, soulless descent

beckons to the ravens of the dirge

for the covenless lovers’ lament

Yet not one has singularly proven

on brooms there fly real witches

so, mine a nameless, blameless surge

across an endless Night of Bridges*




Shayne, David. “The tragedy and triumph of the Palmach, on the 75th anniversary of its founding”.; May 17, 2016:


Comments Off on Hands In Front Of The Fireplace

Filed under Poetry

United States Embassy – Jerusalem, Israel

United States Embassy – Jerusalem, Israel (Randyjw; May 15, 2018)



Comments Off on United States Embassy – Jerusalem, Israel

Filed under Israel

Happy Mother’s Day 2018

Happy Mother’s Day 2018 (Randyjw; May 13, 2018)





Comments Off on Happy Mother’s Day 2018

Filed under Uncategorized

Puzzle Piece

Puzzle Piece (Randyjw; May 11, 2018)


What in this issue is akin to a jigsaw —

starting with rigid borders and one-sided ends

working my way from the easy parts backwards,

so revealing fine details of the pictures within

Tiny pieces that all look uniform

one head, two arms, and two little legs,

subtle, yet varied among form and gradations

the two nestled perfectly is how you begin

Others join on to string right and then left

extending the base to a single-formed line

Continue around using only the straight-edge

until you have completed the silhouette of your design

Now gently find way to apportion the remainders

the commonalities between and what sets them apart

Take one in your palm as you cherish and savor

the distinctive striations and distinguishing marks

Learn subtle expressions displayed by each

shadow of a boat or the shade of a gull

lucid peach light in the lover’s eyes

tilt of chin in the fading sun

Aha! and to complete the process some time past begun

you grasp the last piece and you think that  you’re done

You carefully turn it to place in that spot

and, ever, went missing

that darn elusive last one


Comments Off on Puzzle Piece

Filed under Poetry

Ecosystem Of Words

Ecosystem Of Words (Randyjw; May 10, 2018)


Words are just fill-ins

Igniting ecosystems

Catalyst begins


Comments Off on Ecosystem Of Words

Filed under Poetry

Ringo Starr To Play Tel Aviv June 2018

Ringo Starr To Play Tel Aviv June 2018 (Randyjw; May 7, 2018)



Ringo Starr will be playing in Tel Aviv, Israel on June 23, 2018.


John, Paul, George and Ringo were each wonderful solo artists, in addition to breaking new cultural boundaries in music with their wildly popular The Beatles.


Ringo has a great acoustic album I’ve recently discovered and fallen in love with on Spotify.


Here are some listings on Spotify you can check out:




Here’s the official website for Ringo:



Comments Off on Ringo Starr To Play Tel Aviv June 2018

Filed under Uncategorized

Poetic Science

Poetic Science (Randyjw; May 7, 2018)


Poetic Science:

Speaking volumes without sound

in utter silence


Comments Off on Poetic Science

Filed under Poetry

Robert Frost Was In Ardent Support Of Israel


Robert Frost Was In Ardent Support Of Israel (Randyjw; May 2, 2018)


I love Robert Frost’s poem, “Stopping by Woods On A Snowy Evening”.



Apparently, according to this handwritten letter, Robert Frost was in ardent support of Israel:



The Jefferson Hotel


Washington  6.  D. C.  DIstrict  7.4704


As everyone must know I am in favor of brave nations, little and big. I have been a Balfour Israelite from aforetime, and was recently romantically confirmed in my politics when I stood face to face with Nehemiah the Restorer in person by the great stones in situ (I happened on all by myself) of the wall he restored three thousand years ago in defiance of Sanballat. His is one of the most stirring stories of the Bible, one children are not apt to hear enough of. I trust you will read it again now to please me, if I may be your guide in reading, by way of thanking you for this honor.


Robert Frost



Comments Off on Robert Frost Was In Ardent Support Of Israel

Filed under Uncategorized

Yodfat: Open Lecture at Oriental Institute by Dr. Mordechai Aviam


Yodfat: Open Lecture at Oriental Institute by Dr. Mordechai Aviam (Randyjw; May 2, 2018)


David A. Kipper Ancient Israel Lecture Series


WHAT:  Yodfat (Jotapata): The Life and Death of a Jewish Galilean Town: A Case Study for Jewish Life at the End of the Second Temple Period

Open Lecture at Oriental Institute by Dr. Mordechai Aviam; Lecture followed by Reception

WHEN:  Wednesday, May 2, 2018 7:00–8:45PM

WHERE:  Oriental Institute, Breasted Hall – 1155 East 58th Street, Chicago, IL


LECTURER:  Dr. Mordechai Aviam, Land of Israel Studies, Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee and Institute for Galilean Archaeology


COST:  Free And Open To The Public


Update: General Public tickets are sold out. Available only to UChicago Student (Lecture Only) and Oriental Institute Members (Lecture Only)






Comments Off on Yodfat: Open Lecture at Oriental Institute by Dr. Mordechai Aviam

Filed under Uncategorized

The Sky Is Not The Limit

The Sky Is Not The Limit (Randyjw; May 2, 2018)


A child sees the clouds

and exclaims aloud

they exist where the sky is the ceiling

Though the days will arrive

when she’ll soon realize

yet a universe slowly revealing


Comments Off on The Sky Is Not The Limit

Filed under Poetry



Counter-Mission (Randyjw; May 1, 2018)


I appreciate human differences — the added value given by each individual to their society, the diversity of culture and people, the common core beneath it all. But, I must say that it can be difficult to live as a minority.


I am a minority, but unrecognized as such. As society refuses to recognize the ancestral lineage dating back thousands of years of the Jewish people, I find it equally strange that they will recognize a self-termed people who essentially were born in the early to late(r) 1900’s; given circa 1922 or in the 1960’s, depending on whether out-of-context reasoning counts towards the dating of the matter.


Yes, I am rather in awe of the miracle of my survival, from the ancient genesis of Jewish beginnings, up until these times today. Somewhere, my ancestors lived through slavery in Egypt, the Babylonian exile, the Roman vassalization of Judah, the auto-da-fe’s, pogroms, the Holocaust, anti-Semitism, BDS, and other movements against our People.


And, I’m as equally surprised at the acceptance of the people of Arab culture/language, who pluck the Jewish term for the Falastin people straight from the pages of the Jewish Bible, when the land was called Canaan, and the Romans only after 70 C.E. began to term our land, “Palestina,” after our vanquished enemy of old, with no known traceable records that such people ever thrived to the present time.


Being a minority in America is not as difficult, say, as being a minority under tyrannical regimes, such as Iran, per se. Yet, it does have its problems. In recent times, my mother has recounted to me the signs she saw in Miami Beach, which prohibited Jews, Blacks, and dogs from the beaches. We were also discriminated against in employment, housing, education, outside activities, etc. I’ve touched on this in several other pieces I’ve written, but since it is happening with fervor again, I think it bears mentioning.


There is a concerted effort, once again, to implement anti-Semitic policies in society, whether in our schools via the Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions actions against Jewish people (and not just against the “state” of Israel, but against Israeli academicians, scientists, exchanges, business, etc.), or in the lay population, via the religious entities.


In the United States, due to several factors, discrimination against certain “classes” is not allowed. It can be origin, nationality, religion, age (to an extent), race, etc. The “separation between Church and State” references the Constitution not respecting the establishment of a religion. Churches, etc., are not supposed to bridge great divides to foray into the political arena, or risk losing their charitable status through the tax-masters, the IRS (who have already discriminated against pro-Israel applicants). They must serve people of all religions who request their charity, because all must be served alike.


Yet, I find it particularly annoying as a homeless, Jewish person, who must rely on Christian goodwill in order to eat, that I must listen to Christians belittle the Jewish people, whether of ancient times, or of today. Although I live in an area of high Jewish population, the Jewish resources, as magnificent as they are, and as far-reaching as they extend, cannot quite serve my needs at the local capacity, as everything I need is in  close proximity to where I am, and the Jewish locations are beyond what I can physically attend.


And so, I often must listen to portions or complete Christian sermons, which is against my religion to do, in order to eat. And here, the imagined doings of my ancestors are attacked. This past weekend, I listened to the “volunteer” Pastor for a very large, major Christian movement say that Orthodox Judaism believes that the death of a man (person) will atone for their (personal) sins, and that that is basically the Orthodox Judaism position on why the Holocaust occurred (in murdering six million Jewish people, along with five million other people, as well). He preached this in front of a homeless congregation, who would apparently trust this “Pastor-person” not to be lying to them, I would imagine. His statement basically implied that the Jewish people believe we accept that the Holocaust occurred because we somehow deserved it for our “sin” (of not accepting the Christian version of a different Redeemer we believe is still yet to come).


I cannot believe the audacity of this guy. I went up to him and spoke to him of this. He tried to invoke general support of the position he gave by mentioning various Jewish tomes for his statement, but I asked him to be specific, because, as he well knows, when he mentions the Talmud, the Talmud is very specific to attribute commentary spoken, and then written down, to its proper author. He could not do so. Then he mentioned that it was the view of someone he called Michael Brown, or somebody like that he says, who he says is a Jewish person who now believes in Christianity. He is supposed to get me his “proof” for this view next weekend.


Meanwhile, I decided to Google search ahead of time, to give myself ammunition for the debate to continue, and I find that the viewpoint he is giving is a tactic which has been, or is being, used in the Christian community to try to convert Jewish people to Christianity. Not only that, but that viewpoint is also being used to indoctrinate countless other atheists, agnostics, Christians, and others against virulent anti-Semitic viewpoints.


I looked up, basically, whether Judaism accepts as atonement for sin the death of a man, and it gave me an example of the so-called Christian Redeemer and the argument against that view, from the Jewish perspective. Here is what Rabbi Tovia Singer has to say:




May be continued…. (oy-vavoy…)



Continued (May 6, 2018)


I looked forward to seeing if the “volunteer Pastor” had also done his homework for the “Disposition” today (a religious “stand-off” — i.e., debate — where Jews are always required to defend the reasons we have maintained our faith [for thousands of years] against newer religions, generally with consequence to the Jewish person, such as ostracism from society, torture, or death) —


He handed me a couple of pages typed-up and printed out from an as-yet-to-be-identified source (my further questioning brought the answer, “Michael Brown; Apologist…). I gave him the information so he could look up Rabbi Tovia Singer’s answers (from the link, above), and then he began his preaching.


He went back and forth, like he did before, saying things he meant to say, while also exclaiming they were really not what he was saying… In effect, contradicting himself, often, as a result. I had forgotten to write of the way he tried to attack my beliefs last week, by first asking what Jewish “denomination” I belong to…”Reform?” He wanted to imply that because I was not raised in the Orthodox community, that perhaps I could have no idea about what he declares is Orthodox Judaism’s belief that a man who dies can atone for a Jewish person’s personal sin.


The “Pastor” had said that, basically, this was the Jewish belief response as to the Holocaust, as if we were accepting a slaughter by evil men of their own free will of the Jewish people as some type of expiation for our sins — which Christianity has, in the past two millenia, expounded was the reason we must suffer at their hands, bear misery for our “non-belief in the Christian version of their Messiah”; and be put to death, frequently as a result. He then went on to attack that the Jewish people could worship, at all, since we are not performing Temple rites in Jerusalem in G-d’s Holy Temple. This is answered in the Biblical Prophet, Hosea’s, response that “…we will render for bulls (i.e, for sin offerings) the words of our lips” (as noted by Rabbi Tovia Singer in the supplied response, above). What the “Pastor” is seemingly doing is using the missionary tactics to proselytize to a Jewish person to get them to convert to Christianity. But, no; I’m not budging. I’ll be steadfast ’til the end.


The “Pastor” totally contradicts himself last week by first stating that “Orthodox Judaism” holds the belief that a man’s death will atone for a Jewish person’s personal sins. I find this statement alarming. Since he proceeds, as a non-Jew, to speak for all of Orthodox Judaism, is, firstly, absurd. The belief which he attributes to all of Orthodox Judaism, since he definitely implied that, is refuted in Rabbi Singer’s reply, given in the link to, above. When my argument with him on this matter last week begins, he responds to me by declaring that Josephus says there were 24 sects of Judaism during the time in which he had written his work (I haven’t checked this statement), and so implies that I couldn’t know what other Jews might be saying on this matter, if I’m not of that particular “sect”, yet he makes no distinction to the congregation by declaring this alleged Jewish belief as IN TOTO to Orthodox Judaism. He says, on the one hand: that THIS is the belief of Orthodox Judaism (accepting the Holocaust, as if it was somehow our fault and that we deserved it, and must accept it for our being “sinful” people [not believing in the Christian version of the Messiah as our own, yet-to-come…]) — but, on the other hand: he argues that different Jews, even within the same “denomination”, hold different opinions of the matter. So, how, then, could he state with any definitiveness, that the opinion he believes represents Orthodox Judaism’s reasoning on the matter, according to his own beliefs, could be the authoritative be-all and end-all, ratified, codified and enshrined?


Now, on to today, which is one week later. He DOES state that Randy, a Jewish person, DOES disagree with him, and gave him sources to check out, which he hasn’t done, yet. He DOES say that he doesn’t mean to offend, when he presents a difference of opinion, and that he DOES not mean to say that the Jewish people believe that we deserved to have had the Holocaust happen. He brings up Martin Luther’s horrible book, of which he bungled the title; it is called: ON THE JEWS AND THEIR LIES. But, then he just goes on to say that everyone is entitled to their own opinions — for example, on whether or not his statement had been correct, or not… Meanwhile, the prinout he had given me lists all kinds of seeming quotations and statements by Jewish Rabbis and various Jewish sourcebooks, etc., to support his theory, but closer examination does not reveal this to be accurate.


I asked him from which source did he procure the printout which he gave me, and he refers to Michael Brown, Apologist… (something or other, which I didn’t hear). I look up Michael Brown and read an article from his website, but what I find there is no logic for argument. Brown mentions a statement to be argued, but doesn’t put any arguments forward; meaning, there is no backup of facts for his statements. Positing some theory with no backup proof does not support what one is attempting to argue. It’s a bit akin to mere name-calling, when it’s an accusatory statement. So, I’m even further from convinced. I’m instead just reviled at this thinner-Hitlerian-lookalike person advancing his anti-Semitic blather to these vulnerable homeless people in our name, but which he cannot claim. And, good grief, he’s going on an evangelical mission to Brazil in June.


I cried there, at that spot and at that moment, for those present, and felt a bit like I was looking out over the people of Sdom and Amorra, while yet questioning whether there were any righteous that could be spared — and the answer was, “No.”



Comments Off on Counter-Mission

Filed under Uncategorized