Arlene Kushner

Arlene from Israel – Worse and Worser.

The truth: There is no entirely satisfactory resolution to our war with Hamas (the war that is not called a war). Aside, of course, from that “ultimate” resolution in which we would fully retake Gaza and banish all terrorists and jihadis – thereby creating a peaceful situation in Gaza and …

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Arlene from Israel – “The Ikar”

“The Ikar” (the essence of the matter) Tomorrow night my eldest granddaughter goes off with her class to Poland for a week, to visit death camps and related sites.  In Israel doing this is a rite of passage.  She and her 12th grade classmates have been exceedingly well prepared.  I …

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Arlene from Israel – Off-Again On-Again War

If we listen to what Netanyahu said yesterday, he never really thought our battle with Hamas was going to be peacefully resolved – he refers to it as “on-going.”  That would mean that even when there were negotiations proceeding during a ceasefire, he knew. Could well be. There were so …

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Arlene from Israel – Déjà vu.

How many times? How many times do we count down as the final hours of a 72 hour – or 120 hour – ceasefire come to an end, aware that resolution of the issues between Israel and Hamas is exceedingly unlikely and wondering what will happen next?? The guessing is …

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Arlene from Israel – An Ugly Mess.

Note: Sorry about the way this has posted. I can’t change it. Arlene doesn’t have it on line yet and this happens sometimes when taken from an email. No matter what happens with regard to Hamas, it will be a mess of one sort or another.  There are no clean, …

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Arlene from Israel – Forecast Cloudy

Before I look at that forecast, let me mention “Kaitana Savta,” which translates literally as “Camp Grandma” (it sounds better in Hebrew).  I am about to begin Kaitana Savta, which comes every year in August and is truly as much fun for me as for my grandkids. Starting tomorrow and …

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Arlene from Israel – Soldiering On.

In spite of decidedly negative news I must address, below, I want to first share some very positive reports. We start with Ari Abramowitz – a host on Israel Inspired Radio and former co-host of Tuesday Night Live in Jerusalem – who wrote a Tisha B’Av message from his unit, …

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Arlene from Israel – With Clear Eyes

I will be posting less frequently now that the war is over – updating my readers often but not necessarily daily on the anticipated negotiations in Cairo and other matters of importance for Israel. But for today, having stepped back for 24 hours plus now to assess the situation and …

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Arlene from Israel – And Now?

I am chagrined but not exactly shocked by the latest turn of events here. As Shabbat went out, I had expressed surprise that – following the Friday ceasefire broken almost immediately by Hamas with an attack that included a suicide bombing and the kidnapping of Hadar Goldin – Netanyahu had …

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Arlene from Israel – Let Us Draw Strength

Tonight begins Tisha B’Av, the most solemn day of the Jewish calendar.  It marks the day of the destruction of our two Temples and a number of other national calamities. On this day we fast and mourn, read the Book of Lamentations. We also look to the religious meaning in …

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Arlene in Israel – Taking a Broader View

I begin with some very essential observations that go to the heart of Israel’s situation, observations that are broadly recognized among Jews here in Israel, but are not grasped by many – Jews and non-Jews alike – in the Western world: How heavy, then, is the burden on the shoulders …

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Arlene in Israel – Events Unfolding

Motzei Shabbat (After Shabbat) I left my posting abruptly yesterday because of the advent of Shabbat and want here to follow through.  But it’s tentatively only, because indeed events are in the process of unfolding and we have to see what tomorrow and the ensuing days will bring. Quite frankly, …

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Arlene from Israel – Struggle All the Way

Let me begin with a video of something I described last night from the Shloshim ceremonies at the Great Synagogue.  This is Lt. Col. Shai Abramson, Chief Cantor of the IDF, singing with choir in prayer for the soldiers of the IDF: For strength.  (And with thanks to Linda O.) …

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Arlene in Israel – Shloshim

Shloshim means 30 in Hebrew, and and it is now a significant 30 days since the funerals of the three students who had been kidnapped and murdered by terrorists because they were Jews. ~~~~~~~~~~~ Tonight there was a major ceremony at the Great Synagogue in Jerusalem to mark this day …

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Arlene in Israel – How It Is.

  I begin by sharing this picture, drawn by an artist intent on paying tribute to our soldiers. Soldier as superman: His cape is his tallit. The artist is my granddaughter.         A true story told last week by Col. Richard Kemp: He was given the opportunity to …

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Arlene in Israel – A Bit Better

July 24, 2014 Kerry has left Israel, for consultations in Cairo.  He’ll be back, undoubtedly.  But it’s nice to know he’s not here. ~~~~~~~~~~ The FAA ban on US airlines flying in and out of Ben Gurion has been lifted.  They say it’s because they have been “working with its …

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Arlene in Israel – Hold On, Hold On!

We buried another lone soldier today.  Max Steinberg, 24, a Golani soldier who came from Los Angeles just a couple of years ago.  Again, a call went out for people to come to the funeral, held at the national cemetery on Har Herzl, Jerusalem. Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said: “Over …

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