Yahrtzeit Of Rav Tzvi Hersh Of Liska To Be Observed Tonight

August 17th, 2016

lisker trip 6 011[COMMUNICATED CONTENT]

Yidden will commerate the 142 yahrtzeit of Rav Tzi Hersh of Liska, an historical and preeminent Chasidic rebbe whose influence was felt throughout Hungary. A talmid of the Yismach Moshe, and author of the sefer Ach Pri Tevuah and Hayasher V’hatov,.

Although chasidus was introduced in Hungary by Rav Eizik of Kaliv and promulgated by Rav Tzvi Hersh’s rebbe, the Yismach Moshe of Uhel, it was during the era of Rav Hershla Liska (as he was universally referred to), who disseminated chasidus to the masses. Throughout the several decades of the Ach Pri Tevuah’s status as Hungary’s most influential rebbe thousands flocked to him from near and far basking in his vast Torah scholarship and benefiting from his sought after counsel.

Upon his passing, on 14 Av, his son in law Rav Chaim Friedlander, author of the sefer Tal Chaim a Torah giant in is own right succeeded as rebbe and rov in Liska.

In pre-war Hungary, on the day of 14 AV the town of Liska was the focal point for tens of thousands of yidden who converged at his zion to daven at his kever. Over the years many yidden merited various yeshous at his holy zion. In fact, the Ach Pri Tevuah was quoted as saying ” I will be able to accomplish more in my socks then in my shoes”, referencing to his ability to help yidden upon his passing which underscores and explains why the Liska yahrtzit was so revered in pre-war Hungary.

To this day, multitudes of people throughout the year travel to Lika to be mispallel at his ohel where many people share incredible accounts in their personal lives that required a yeshuah.

Although yahrtzeit seudahs will be held in all major chasidic shuls and centers the central yahtzeit tisch will take place this eveing ( Wednesday ) the night preceding 14 AV in Khal Ateres Tzvi Liska located at 1449 50 street in Boro Park,at 8:30 with mincha/Maariv followed by a seudah.

The Tisch will be led by by the Ach Pri Tevuah’s descendant the current Liska Rebbe, Harav Tzei Hersh Friedlander Shlita, a scion of the rebbes of Liska who carries forth the masorah of his ancestors.

Christie Signs Bill Requiring Anti-Israel Firms Divestment

August 17th, 2016

chrGov. Chris Christie has signed legislation that would bar the state’s public pension fund from investing with companies that boycott Israel or Israeli businesses.

The Republican governor, pointing a finger at Democratic President Barack Obama for criticizing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, signed the legislation on Tuesday during a statehouse ceremony.

“Israel is the beacon of democracy in a region that is constantly in turmoil,” Christie said.

The legislation passed with overwhelming support in the Democrat-led state Legislature in June.

The measure is part of a broader effort to oppose a boycott, divestment and sanctions movement that targets Israel and Israeli businesses. The BDS movement, made up of unions, academic associations, churches and other grassroots efforts, describes itself as a Palestinian-led push “for freedom, justice and equality.”

Christie said New Jersey does $1.3 billion in trade with Israel every year and called the Middle Eastern country the United States’ “one, true and best friend.”

The legislation requires the State Investment Council, which manages more than $80 billion in pension assets, to identify any potential investments in companies with Israeli boycotts and to divest from them.

The prohibition does not apply to firms giving humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people through certain organizations unless the organizations also are engaging in prohibited boycotts.

Obama said in a statement accompanying a trade bill signed in February that his administration “strongly opposes” boycott campaigns directed at Israel. He also said, though, the law was contrary to longstanding policy with regard to Israeli settlements.


Trump Campaign Shakes Up Leadership In Latest Sign Of Tumult

August 17th, 2016

trpeRepublican Donald Trump announced a shakeup of his campaign leadership Wednesday, the latest sign of tumult in his bid for the White House as his poll numbers slip and only 82 days remain before the election.

The billionaire real estate mogul named Stephen Bannon of the conservative Breitbart News website as chief executive officer and promoted pollster Kellyanne Conway to campaign manager. Paul Manafort, Trump’s controversial campaign chairman, will retain his title, but it is unclear if his role will change.

In tapping Bannon for a top campaign role, Trump is doubling down on his outsider appeal rather than appeasing more traditional Republicans. The conservative Breitbart figure has been a cheerleader for Trump’s campaign for months and was critical of Republican leaders, including Ryan. Bannon is a former Goldman Sachs banker and does not bring presidential campaign experience to Trump’s White House bid.

Trump has resisted pleas from fellow Republicans to overhaul the flame-throwing approach on the campaign trail that powered his surge to the top of the Republican field in the primary season. Instead of working to broaden his appeal, Trump has largely hewed to the large rallies and attention-grabbing comments that appealed to the party base.

Conway joined Trump’s campaign earlier this year as a senior adviser. A longtime Republican strategist and pollster, she has close ties to Trump’s running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

“I’ve known both of them for a long time. They’re terrific people, they’re winners, they’re champs, and we need to win it,” Trump told The Associated Press in a phone interview early Wednesday.

Manafort deputy Rick Gates, who has been traveling often with Trump, is expected to maintain a senior role with the campaign.

Manafort, who took over the reins following the departure of campaign manager Corey Lewandowski in June, has come under scrutiny because of his past work for a pro-Russian Ukrainian political party. The Associated Press reported Wednesday that Manafort helped the party secretly route at least $2.2 million in payments to two prominent Washington lobbying firms in 2012, doing so in a way that effectively obscured the party’s efforts to influence U.S. policy. Gates, who had worked with Manafort on Ukrainian issues, told the AP he and Manafort had consulted with the lobbying firms on Ukrainian politics, but called the actions lawful.

The campaign shakeup, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, comes as polls show Trump trailing Clinton nationally and in key battleground states following a difficult campaign stretch that saw him insulting the Muslim parents of a soldier who died in Iraq and temporarily refraining from endorsing House Speaker Paul Ryan in his primary race.

Trump has resisted pressure to change his campaign style.

“You know, I am who I am,” he told a local Wisconsin television station Tuesday. “It’s me. I don’t want to change. Everyone talks about, ‘Oh, well you’re going to pivot, you’re going to.’ I don’t want to pivot. I mean, you have to be you. If you start pivoting, you’re not being honest with people.”

Conway called the moves “an expansion at a critical time in the homestretch.”

Details of the new pecking order were hashed out at a lengthy senior staff meeting at Trump Tower Tuesday while Trump was on the road. A statement announcing the hires was released Wednesday. Additional senior hires are expected soon.

Trump, whose campaign is built on his persona as a winner, said several times Wednesday that the campaign was “doing well,” and said his speech hours earlier in Wisconsin Tuesday was well-received.

“We’re going to be doing something very dramatic,” Trump added.

Trump’s campaign announced earlier that it would finally begin airing its first ads of the general election next week in the battleground states of Florida, Ohio, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.

While polls have shown Clinton building a lead following last month’s convention, Democrats fear that a depressed voter turnout might diminish support among the minority, young and female voters who powered Obama to two victories.

Clinton said at a voter registration event at a Philadelphia high school that she’s “not taking anybody anywhere for granted” in the race for the White House.

In the Wisconsin outing Tuesday, Trump accused Clinton of “bigotry” and being “against the police,” claiming that she and other Democrats have “betrayed the African American community” and pandered for votes.

Trump charged that Clinton has been on the side of the rioters in Milwaukee, declaring: “Our opponent Hillary would rather protect the offender than the victim.”

“The riots and destruction that have taken place in Milwaukee is an assault on the right of all citizens to live in security and to live in peace,” he said.

The Clinton campaign responded by accusing Trump of being the bigot instead.

“With each passing Trump attack, it becomes clearer that his strategy is just to say about Hillary Clinton what’s true of himself. When people started saying he was temperamentally unfit, he called Hillary the same. When his ties to the Kremlin came under scrutiny, he absurdly claimed that Hillary was the one who was too close to Putin. Now he’s accusing her of bigoted remarks — We think the American people will know which candidate is guilty of the charge,” spokeswoman Jennifer Palmieri said in a statement early Wednesday.


Jordan’s King Abdullah II Blames Israel Alone For Har Habayis Violence

August 17th, 2016

1Jordan’s King Abdullah blames Israel and Israel alone for tensions and violence on Har Habayis. The Jordanian monarch made his comments during an interview with the Jordanian al-Dustour newspaper on Monday, 11 Menachem Av. The king blames Israel for defying the long-standing religious status quo pertaining to the holy cites in Jerusalem.

King Abdullah is quoted expressing his commitment to continue fighting efforts “to violate the sanctity of al-Aqsa Mosque”, further stating his country will use “any means necessary to defend al-Aqsa”.

He used terms including “Israeli aggression” as he referred to Israel permitting extremists onto Har Habayis, stating this remains ‘the’ top priority among Palestinians.

These statements are in line with warnings issued by numerous Gedolei Torah, who warned that the continued Jewish presence on Har Habayis against the position of Gedolei Yisrael throughout the generations will lead to bloodshed and continued loss of Jewish lives.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Orthodox Union Applauds Florida Court for Dismissing Lawsuit against Student Scholarship Program

August 17th, 2016

lawsuitThe Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, applauds Florida’s First District Court of Appeals for dismissing a lawsuit Tuesday challenging the constitutionality of Florida’s Tax Credit Scholarship Program.

“With this ruling, more than 78,000 students will be able to start school this year knowing their scholarships are secure,” said Mimi Jankovits, regional director of the OU Advocacy office in Florida.

OU Advocacy works to ensure that Jewish day schools, yeshivas and other non-public schools receive resources from local, state and federal governments to make them more affordable.

The Tax Credit Scholarship Program, best known as Step Up for Students, allows low-income children to attend the non-public schools their families consider best for them. Florida’s State Legislature created the program in 2001 by allowing corporate donations to the scholarship fund in exchange for tax credits.

Last year, 2,056 students in Florida received $11.8 million to help them attend 29 Jewish day schools in Florida.

The court ruled that the lawsuit, brought by the state teachers union and other advocacy groups, shouldn’t proceed because the plaintiffs lacked legal standing to sue and hadn’t suffered harm from the program.

Said Jankovits, “We commend Save Our Scholarships, which worked hard to fight the lawsuit and defend the rights of students to attend the school that best fits their needs.”

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

Jewish Groups Bring Aid To Flood Victims In Macedonia

August 17th, 2016

mA U.S. Jewish humanitarian organization partnered with the Jewish community in Macedonia to provide relief assistance to thousands affected by a devastating flood that hit the region a week ago.

The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the Jewish Community of the Republic of Macedonia and the Holocaust Fund of the Jews from Macedonia distributed 1,000 hygiene relief kits to the most vulnerable of flood survivors.

“Our response puts into action the Jewish teaching that every individual life has value and it is our duty to offer care and relief in in times of disaster, no matter a person’s background or faith” said Alan H. Gill, CEO of the JDC. “Our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones, and cherished possessions, as a result of this tragedy.”

The kits, assembled at a Jewish community volunteer event on Sunday, were distributed to 5,000 people in the villages of Stajkovci, Smiljkovci, Brnjarci, Indzikovo, and Chento.

“The Jewish Community of the Republic of Macedonia, the Holocaust Fund of the Jews from Macedonia, and our partner JDC extend our sincere sympathy and condolences to all those who have suffered great loss from the natural disaster that struck Skopje and the surrounding regions. We have come together to help victims in need, regardless of religious or ethnic background, in the spirit of tikkun olam, repairing the world,” said the Boards of Directors of The Jewish Community in the Republic of Macedonia and the Holocaust Fund of the Jews from Macedonia.

(Source: JNS.org)

A Woman Who Protested Against Minister Ayelet Shaked Admitted To A Psychiatric Facility Against Her Will

August 17th, 2016

1A resident of a Jerusalem corridor community claims she took part in a protest outside the office of Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and as a result, was committed to a psychiatric facility against her will.

‘A’ took part in a protest outside the Justice Minister’s office in Jerusalem, part of a protest vigil maintained outside the office. She remained on the site for four days, demanding to speak with the minister. The minister did indeed agree to speak with her briefly.

During their brief meeting she concentrated on matters pertaining to the judicial system. A short time before the meeting, according to ‘A’, a social worker was sent to meet her and she then referred the case to a psychiatrist. The attorney representing ‘A’ claims the social worker led to her client being admitted to a psychiatric facility against her will, Yediot Yerushalayim reports.

The report adds that Yediot Yerushalayim obtained a copy of the letter sent by the social worker to a psychiatrist, which states “According to the report given to me by an employee of the Justice Ministry, in recent days, ‘A’ decided she is going to remain at the entrance to the ministry”. The social worker concluded “I am asking for your immediate intervention”.

A short time later ‘A’ was taken for a psychiatric evaluation during which it was determined that ‘A’ is in a “paranoid psychotic state’ and therefore, she behaves without judgement”. This resulted in her hospitalization against her will.

‘A’ managed to hide out at the home of a friend for a number of days until police tracked her down via a call to the public for assistance in locating a missing person. A son of the friend saw this on Facebook and notified police of the woman’s whereabouts. After a number of days of being committed against her will she was released following a decision from the district psychiatric board, which ruled she is not in an active psychotic state.

The committee also ruled the decision to commit her against her will was illegal, and attorney Inbal Brown, an expert in such matters adds, “in an effort to justify their actions they also stated ‘A’ is a threat to her own well-being, which was also not true”. Brown also has harsh words for the actions of the social worker and others involved.

The Ministry of Health released the following statement: “Medical confidentiality may not be applicable in this specific case. In principle, instructions for an urgent examination is a medical condition that requires immediate testing and investigation. Since this is a forced process, all actions possible are taken to make sure the person taken by force is indeed the relevant person. In cases in which the identity of an individual is not known with certainty, contact information that may assist in identifying the subject is given to the appropriate staff. This is done towards avoiding mistakes resulting in examining the wrong person”.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Baltimore Officer Suspended After Calling Protesters ‘Thugs’

August 17th, 2016

bpdA vice president of Baltimore’s police union has been suspended after sending an email to the entire department that referred to demonstrators as “thugs.”

Police Lt. Victor Gearhart was referring to a group protesting the state Fraternal Order of Police conference at a downtown hotel.

Department spokesman T.J. Smith said Police Commissioner Kevin Davis was “outraged by the email.” Smith said the message “is not representative of the men and women of this agency.”

This is not the first time Gearhart has been disciplined for his online comments. He was reassigned from patrol to security this year after engaging in arguments with activists on social media. With the support of the union, he sued alleging that his reassignment was an unconstitutional violation of his right to free speech.

Gearhart could not be reached for comment Tuesday. A woman who identified herself as his wife told The Associated Press to contact a union attorney, who did not immediately return a phone message.


IDF Tried To Induct The Shomron’s Hilltop Youth

August 17th, 2016

1IDF Colonel Eran Shani traveled to the Shomron where he met with representatives of the so-called hilltop youths. Sending a colonel from the IDF Human Resources Branch signals a change in military policy, as in the past, the hilltop youths have been viewed as persona non grata by the IDF.

Shani tried to change the tide and speak to the representatives about entering the IDF rather than remain outside the system, as many have done in the past.

In fact, the official IDF visit marked the end of a five-year rehabilitation program that was initiated by the Shomron Regional Council in the hope of getting these youths back on the mainstream track. The plan was that of Yossi Dagan, who today serves as head of the regional council.

Many of these youths have left their families and leave together in outposts, sustaining themselves by farming and performing chores, many having dropped out of mainstream society. Dagan’s plan was to bring them back into the mainstream fold, including military service and recognition of the state and its authority. In many cases, youths were connected to families to assist in guiding them. Former IDF Chief Rabbi Avichai Ronsky, Rosh Yeshivat Itamar, has been active in working with the program and maintaining contact with Colonel Shani.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Performance Qualification (PQ) Phase Begins For Development Of New Intelligence Center In The Negev

August 17th, 2016

idfcThe Defense Ministry on Tuesday, 12 Menachem Av, published the performance qualification phase (PQ) for the establishment of the new Intelligence Center in the Negev, the first step toward the tender for the complex. It is done in collaboration with the private sector (PFI) and includes the financing, design, development and operations of the campus for twenty-five years. This will be the largest tender in the framework of the extensive national project relocating numerous IDF bases to southern Israel. Those which meet the PQ requirements will compete in the tender process to prove their ability to comply with the financial, engineering, telecommunications and operational requirements of the project.

The PQ is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2017, with the release of the tender expected in the third quarter. Use of the center is expected to begin by the end of 2022 and will bring some 80% of the IDF Intelligence Corps to southern Israel.

The Intelligence Center will be built adjacent to the Omar community in southern Israel, and will comprise roughly 350,000 square meters of developed area. Its construction and operations will be characterized by innovative planning with advanced, energy efficient infrastructure. The majority of the IDF Intelligence Corps will transition to serve at the complex in order to release high-demand land in Gush Dan. The release of these lands is part of a multi-year government program in order to tackle the housing problem as well as upgrade the infrastructure and quality of life across the Negev.

The development of the center in the Negev will be the most significant component of the IDF’s relocation to the south. The Ministry of Defense is currently finishing the development of the Training Center and bringing it to full occupancy. Additionally, the tender process for the ICT Center in Beersheva is underway and is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. The Ministry of Defense has prepared itself to adhere to the timetable which was committed to in order to construct these bases.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Israel Looking To Bring In 1000s Of Construction Workers To Boost Construction Industry

August 17th, 2016

A construction worker at a site of a new housing unit in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Har HomaThe demand for construction workers in Israel continues to grow as the government has set the elimination of the nationwide housing shortage as a top priority. Towards expanding nationwide construction, six companies will be permitted to bring 1,000 construction workers each to contribute to Israel’s construction workforce.

According to the Ministry of Housing, no less than 50 foreign construction companies have submitted bids in the tender in the hope of being awarded a lucrative contract. The list includes companies from Russia, Greece, Turkey, China, Vietnam, Spain, the Ukraine and Portugal.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Ford Says It Will Have a Fully Autonomous Car by 2021

August 17th, 2016

fordFord Motor Co. intends to have a fully driverless vehicle — no steering wheel, no pedals — on the road within five years. The car will initially be used for commercial ride-hailing or ride-sharing services; sales to consumers will come later.

“This is a transformational moment in our industry and it is a transformational moment for our company,” said CEO Mark Fields, as he announced the plan at Ford’s Silicon Valley campus in Palo Alto, California.

Ford’s approach to the autonomous car breaks from many other companies, like Mercedes-Benz and Tesla Motors, which plan to gradually add self-driving capability to traditional cars. Just last month, BMW AG, Intel Corp. and the automotive camera maker Mobileye announced a plan to put an autonomous vehicle with a steering wheel on the road by 2021.

Instead, Ford is taking the same approach as Alphabet Inc.’s Google, which supports moving directly to self-driving cars once the technology is perfected.

“We abandoned the stepping-stone approach of driver-assist technologies and decided we were going to take the full leap,” said Raj Nair, Ford’s chief technical officer.

Nair says Ford will continue developing systems that assist the driver, like automatic emergency braking or lane departure warning. But he said semi-autonomous systems that can operate the car but then cede control back to the driver when an obstacle is encountered are actually dangerous in Ford’s view. Engineers couldn’t figure out how to make sure drivers stay engaged and ready to take over. So, Ford decided to remove the driver altogether.

“We learned that to achieve full autonomy, we have to take a completely different path,” Nair said.

Jeremy Carlson, a senior analyst with IHS Automotive, says he doesn’t know of another automaker who’s taking Ford’s approach. But there are challenges either way, he said. Riders may have a hard time trusting fully autonomous cars, for example, but semi-autonomous cars can be dangerous because drivers may not understand what the vehicles can and cannot do.

“I don’t think there’s going to be any one right answer,” he said.

Ford’s vehicle will be specifically designed for commercial mobility services, like taxi companies, and will be available in high volumes. Ford says personal ownership of self-driving cars will come later.

Ford didn’t say whether it would work with a ride-sharing partner or try to establish services on its own. Rival General Motors Co. has a partnership with the ride-hailing company Lyft and has also bought a self-driving software company called Cruise Automation.

Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford also said it plans to double the staff at its Palo Alto research center by the end of next year to nearly 300 people. It will buy two more buildings next to its current building in order to expand its campus, Fields said.

Ford will also make several investments and partnerships to speed its development of autonomous vehicles.

Ford and Chinese search engine company Baidu will each invest $75 million in Velodyne, a company that makes laser sensors that help guide self-driving cars. Velodyne, based in Morgan Hill, California, says it will use the $150 million investment to expand design and production and reduce the cost of its sensors. Laser sensors — dubbed Lidar, which stands for light, detection and ranging — can also be used in conventional vehicles as part of driver assist systems.

Ford said it has acquired Israel-based computer vision and machine learning company SAIPS for its expertise in artificial intelligence and computer vision. It also invested in Berkeley, California-based Civil Maps for its three-dimensional mapping capabilities.

Ford has also formed a partnership with New York-based Nirenberg Neuroscience LLC, a machine vision company that has developed devices for restoring sight to patients with degenerative eye diseases.

Ford shares fell 9 cents to $12.34. and were flat in after-hours trading.


Update on Soldiers Injured in Operational Mishap in N. Israel

August 17th, 2016

ywnisrael.israelOn Tuesday evening 12 Menachem Av it was reported that seven IDF soldiers were injured as a result of a bulldozer falling on and crushing a military jeep.

It is now reported that what occurred is at about 8:00PM, vehicles were heading to a parking area for the night after a day of operations in the Har Dov area when an armored personnel carrier (APC) lost its brakes or failed to brake for reasons that have yet to be determined. This occurred in proximity to the Gladiola border outpost. The armored vehicle picked up speed and crashed into the D9 bulldozer. As a result, an officer, non-commissioned officer and five soldiers from the 601st Battalion were injured. they were all inside the APC.

Two of the injured are listed in serious non-life-threatening condition. Three others are moderate and the remainder light. The evacuation of the injured from the area took about an hour, carried out under a heavy presence of military personnel and equipment due to the proximity to the border.

The soldiers were involved in ‘routine operations’ along the border as part of ongoing maintenance and improvements along the border by engineering personnel. The seriously injured were flown to the trauma unit of Rambam Medical Center in Haifa. The less seriously injured were transported in MDA ambulances to Ziff Hospital in Tzfat. The injured at Ziff are moderate and light, treated for various factures and soft tissue injuries as well as injuries to internal organs.

Rambam Hospital Chief of Trauma Dr. Hani Bachus reported three victims of the accident arrived with two in serious condition and one listed as moderate. He stressed that while they have injuries all over their bodies, they are not in life-threatening condition.

It was first reported that seriously injured personnel were in critical condition but B’chasdei Hashem medical personnel were able to stabilize their condition before it deteriorated further.

The accident occurred a few hours after Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman and IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-General Gadi Eizenkott visited Northern Command. Lieberman was briefed on the situation along the border and the challenges facing troops along the border with Syria and Hizbullah.

An investigation into the accident is underway.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

NYPD: Suspect in Imam’s Slaying Had Gun Stashed in Wall

August 17th, 2016

omThe suspect in the “assassination” of an imam and his friend after they left a mosque had the murder weapon stashed in the wall of his basement apartment, investigators said Tuesday.

New York Police Department investigators determined the .38-caliber revolver was the weapon used in the ambush slayings near the Al-Furqan Jame Masjid mosque in the Ozone Park neighborhood of Queens, a prosecutor told a judge at Oscar Morel’s initial court appearance.

“This was a most horrendous and despicable act that can only be described as as a cold-blooded, premeditated assassination,” Assistant District Attorney Peter McCormack said.

Though the motive remained unclear, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said the attack was being viewed as a possible hate crime.

Morel, 35, “is accused of the murder of a highly respected and beloved religious leader and his friend as they walked home from an afternoon prayer service,” said Brown, who met with family members of the victims on Tuesday. “Their deaths are a devastating loss to their families and the community that they served as men of peace.”

Defense attorney Leonard Ressler said Morel adamantly denied any involvement in the shootings, telling the lawyer, “I didn’t do anything.”

Morel, who was employed as a porter at a Manhattan college, did not enter a plea. He was ordered held without bail.

Police believe Morel was waiting on the block near the mosque for at least eight minutes on Saturday before Imam Maulana Alauddin Akonjee and Thara Uddin were each shot in the back of the head. Authorities believe Morel fled in a black GMC Trailblazer that struck a bicyclist nearby 10 minutes after the shooting.

After finding the vehicle parked on the street, police waited for Morel to return. He was captured after getting into the car and ramming a police car while trying to flee, investigators said.

Police officers searching the Brooklyn home where Morel was arrested late Sunday found the suspected murder weapon — as well as clothes they believe he was wearing at the time of the shooting — behind a section of the wall that had been cut out and reinstalled with screws, authorities said.

Aside from the gun, evidence includes security video of the shooting, prosecutors said Tuesday, adding that the defendant had identified himself in other videos from cameras located a few blocks away.

The killings have stoked fear and anger in the largely Bangladeshi Muslim community in Queens and Brooklyn, where residents have described harassment in recent months by people who shouted anti-Muslim epithets.

“It is a hate crime. I believe that,” Uddin’s brother, Mashuk, said outside court on Tuesday. “This is a terrible crime.”

The imam’s son, Saif Akonjee, said he was feeling “very, very sad.”

“I want to know why he killed him,” he said of Morel. “My father was a very good guy.”


Health Minister Litzman Comments On Recent Food Contaminations

August 16th, 2016

1As the Health Ministry continues probing the salmonella contamination in Telma breakfast cereals, Health Minister Yaakov Litzman announced on Tuesday, 12 Menachem Av, that he does not believe action will be taken against Unilever, which owns Telma. Litzman explains that Unilever is a giant operation and it was not required to notify the Health Ministry after detecting salmonella contamination but was only required to take the necessary action to prevent the contaminated food from reaching the consumer. Litzman adds there was negligence and this is the focus of the ongoing probe.

Regarding the Nasich (Prince) Tehina Company, the company was aware of the contamination and it was required to notify the ministry, but failed to do so. He added that in addition, the tehina company failed to notify companies that purchased its product of the contamination. “At times they knew and failed to report it” Litzman explained, and this is why the order was given to shut the company down for now, halting all production.

Litzman made his remarks during the Israel Medical Conference 2016 which is sponsored by Hadassah Hospitals, Shaare Zedek Hospital, Bnei Tzion Hospital, the Friends of Israel Fund as well as Kupat Cholim Meuchedet and the Kol Ha’ir Newspaper.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

New Organization Formed To Combat Growing Alarming Anti-Religious Trend In The IDF

August 16th, 2016

1Amid a mounting number of complaints from religious IDF soldiers pertaining to an obvious change in policy among officers and matters of religion and halacha, a new organization called “Tzav Echad” (“צו אחד”) has been formed to protect the rights of soldiers impacted by this policy change.

For example, there have been numerous cases of late in which religious soldiers were compelled to shave their beards and to listen to lectures that were an affront to their religious hashkafa. In addition, some were compelled to participate in visits to churches and other forbidden venues, and when they complained, all were told they must follow IDF regulations and orders.

The new organization is collecting the complaints filed by soldiers and hopes to present them in the form of a report to the IDF Rabbinate and senior military commanders. The new NGO has launched a Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/tzavEchad/?fref=ts and invites soldiers to complain if and when they feel their religious rights are violated in the military. One does not have to give one’s name and serial number to file a complaint.

The heads of the NGO are hoping they will have an impact on decision-makers in the military as the new anti-religious trend appears to be widening and it is becoming increasingly difficult for many a religious soldier serving in the IDF.

In the coming days, WhatsApp messages will be sent to 40,000 soldiers serving and some before their induction, including officers and members of the higher command, informing them of the organization and its Facebook page, encouraging any and all with complaints to take advantage of the forum to notify organization officials.

The heads of the organization explain their goal is to restore the proper acceptable approach towards religion and tradition that existed and to bring a halt to the current reality in which many a religious soldier is prevented from living in accordance to his religious beliefs in the IDF without justification for the new regulations whatsoever.

The organization also plans to offer a defense for soldiers impacted by the new unwanted trend to enable to continue advancing in their military service without compromising their religious lifestyle.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

House Republicans Receive FBI Notes From Clinton Interview

August 16th, 2016

hilThe House oversight committee says it has received FBI documents related to the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.

A spokeswoman for the committee says the committee is reviewing documents that are labeled classified.

The announcement comes as a conservative group announced they would receive copies of thousands of previously undisclosed work-related emails sent or received by former Secretary Hillary Clinton.

The emails were recovered as part of the FBI’s yearlong probe into whether Clinton and her aides mishandled sensitive information flowing through a private email server located in the basement of her New York home. After the FBI closed its investigation without finding evidence of criminal wrongdoing by the Democratic presidential nominee, the State Department asked for copies of the recovered emails.


PHOTOS: Jerusalem Chief Rabbi Aryeh Stern Lectures On Achdus Between Tisha And Tu B’Av, The Churban And Geula

August 16th, 2016



Jerusalem Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi HaGaon HaRav Aryeh Stern Shlita gave a shiur on the inyan of ‘achdus between Tisha and Tu B’Av, the Churban and Geula’ to members of a course to become certified as members of the IDF Rabbinate. Among those present for the shiur were outgoing IDF Chief Rabbi Brigadier-General Rafi Peretz as well as a number of senior IDF Rabbinate officers.

The shiur was hosted in Jerusalem’s Old City Beit Knesset Ohel Yitzchak near the Kosel. Rabbi Stern gave a chizuk to all present for continuing to spread Yiddishkheit to battalions in the standing and reserve military.

Rabbi Stern called on them to stand firm regarding matters of Yiddishkheit towards fulfilling their spiritual mission by spreading the words of Hashem to soldiers and officers alike.

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(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

Clinton: Trump’s Foreign Policy ‘Absolutely Bewilders’ Her

August 16th, 2016

hilHillary Clinton vowed Tuesday to conduct a national security and foreign policy that Americans could be proud of, saying rival Donald Trump “just absolutely bewilders” her when he talks about his policies around the globe.

Clinton embraced the U.S. Olympic team’s success at a voter registration rally in Philadelphia, pointing to Team USA’s gold as an example of an optimistic nation that runs counter to what she considers Trump’s pessimism and negativity.

“It just absolutely bewilders me when I hear Donald Trump try to talk about national security,” Clinton said, pointing to Vice President Joe Biden’s dissection of Trump’s foreign policy at a Pennsylvania event on Monday. “What (Trump) often says hurts us. It sends the wrong message to friend and foe alike.” Turning to the Olympic team, she said, “Team USA is showing the world what this country stands for.”

Trump on Monday said the country’s national security requirements demanded “extreme” vetting of immigrants seeking admission to the United States, pointing to the threat of the Islamic State group and terrorism elements. But he offered few specifics about how the process might work or how it would be paid for by taxpayers.

Clinton and Trump have each sought the upper hand as the chief executive most capable of battling terrorism. While the GOP business mogul has vowed to project strength and decisive action against terror, the former secretary of state has pointed to her deep foreign policy credentials and warned that Trump could plunge the nation into another war.

Trump has previously called for an unprecedented temporary ban on Muslims entering the U.S., and said in his Ohio speech that he would overhaul the nation’s screening process and block those who sympathize with extremist groups or fail to embrace American values.

The Republican nominee has made changes to the nation’s immigration system and the construction of a wall along the Mexican border a key part of his fight against terrorism and the Islamic State group, which he compared to the struggle against communism during the Cold War.

As president, Trump said he would encourage immigrants to assimilate and urge parents, teachers and others to promote “American culture.” But he declined to say which regions of the world would race “extreme” vetting and how federal agencies would go about conducting the review.

Trump was traveling on Tuesday to Milwaukee, the site of ongoing protests over the fatal shooting of a black man by a black police officer. His visit follows several days of violence that has left businesses in flames and the Milwaukee police chief expressing surprise at the level of unrest.

Clinton said Monday during a stop in Scranton, Pennsylvania, that the Milwaukee protests showed the nation had “urgent work to do to rebuild trust between police and communities” and that “everyone should have respect for the law and be respected by the law.”

In an interview on Fox News Channel, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker accused Clinton of “inflaming the situation” with her comments.

“I think people understand in that neighborhood and Sherman Park and in Milwaukee, they want law enforcement to step up and protect them,” he said, adding that “statements like that” from Clinton and a “lack of leadership” from Obama “only inflame the situation.”

Trump was expected to hold an event with veterans and law enforcement officers on Tuesday.

While polls have shown Clinton building a lead following the Philadelphia convention, Democrats are fearful that a depressed voter turnout might diminish support among the minority, young and female voters who powered President Barack Obama to two victories.

Clinton said at the voter registration event at a Philadelphia high school that she’s “not taking anybody anywhere for granted” in the race for the White House, saying the stakes “could not be higher.”

While guarding against complacency, Clinton is also preparing for a potential administration.

Her campaign announced that former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, a former Colorado senator, would chair her White House transition team. It will also include former National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm and two longtime Clinton advisers: Neera Tanden, the president of the Center for American Progress, and Maggie Williams, who now leads the Institute of Politics at Harvard University.

Her team, which is being overseen by campaign chairman John Podesta, will handle long-term planning for a potential Clinton White House should the former secretary of state win the election in November. Trump has already tapped New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to lead his transition efforts.

By law, both nominees have access to national security and other federal government briefings.