Tuesday, June 16, 2009

EZ Reads 6/16/09: Why Be Jewish?

A few shorter thoughts, musings, and links:
  • Jack sent out an e-mail a while ago asking people why they are Jewish or why one should be Jewish. I thought the question was better than any answer that came to mind that I could express well, so I never did reply (and I've been a bit busy). He posted some of the replies he's gotten - certainly a few of the answers will occur to you on varying levels, but it's an interesting piece.
  • I was going to write about Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech (link at Jameel's), but truth be told there is little to add. I agree with Jameel and Joe Settler's take and think it was a very good speech clearly delineating the requirements Israel has before accepting a Palestinian state. I think it's important to continue to emphasize that it would be a demilitarized state, and finally, JoeSettler has it right when he notes that it was a nice little education for President Obama. One of the reasons I've always liked Bibi is his ability to speak and the grasp of history he has at his fingertips. Barack Obama is a good prepared speaker; Bibi Netanyahu can respond strongly to anything thrown at him and turn it on whomever he is facing - and come off looking well in the process. For all the noble ideals that Obama can raise as to why the world would like Israel to commit to certain actions, Netanyahu is the most capable of replying in a way that demonstrates why the best path to those ideals is not the actions the US suggests. No other Israeli politician could come close on this score.
  • On a related note, this piece by WestBankMama was perfectly put - noting what they hear and what we hear.
  • This was a moving piece touching on DNR - do not resuscitate - patients by R' Avi Shafran. It's hard to describe, so just read it.
Enjoy. A few posts are in the works on other subjects, but I'm trying to clean them up in my head first.