Archive for September 11th, 2007

Flooding Leaves Millions Homeless in South Asia

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

Continue to pray for all people who are affected by natural disasters, particularly those being affected by flooding in India and other parts of South Asia.

GUWAHATI, India (Reuters) - Soldiers in motor boats rescued thousands of marooned people and helicopters air-dropped food as the number of people made homeless after some of the worst flooding in years in India’s northeast rose to 3.5 million.

About 10 million people out of the 27 million population of Assam state have been affected by flooding after rains in the past few days. More than 2,000 villages have been completely submerged.

The second spell of flooding in less than a month has also spread across parts of Bangladesh.

Around half a million were left marooned in their swamped villages on Tuesday after water was released from the flooded reservoir of a hydroelectric plant.

A dam official said the water was released from the reservoir to protect the plant. Hundreds of homes, huge areas of crops and infrastructure have been damaged.

In India’s Assam, about 3 million people are living in temporary shelters, government buildings and schools, officials said.

“The situation is grim,” the chief minister of the tea- and oil-rich state, Tarun Gogoi, told Reuters on Tuesday.

Around 400,000 ha (one million acres) of farmland have been flooded.

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Bin Laden Looking for a “Caravan of Martyrs”

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

How quickly we forget. On September 11, 2001, Islamic terrorists fulfilled their duty to Allah by killing innocent Americans. Bin Laden is now calling for more like the 9/11 killers to rise up and kill more of our people. What I find interesting is that our memories are so short and our ‘tolerance’ is so high that we sit on our hands and allow this religious group to practically take over our country. It is time to wake up. If we dont, we will surely pay the price again in the form of another attack like 9/11.

Osama bin Laden urged sympathizers to join the “caravan” of martyrs as he praised one of the Sept. 11 suicide hijackers in a new video that emerged Tuesday to mark the sixth anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.

Al-Qaida traditionally issues a video every year on the anniversary, with the last testament of one of the 19 hijackers involved in the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. This year’s video showed hijacker Waleed al-Shehri addressing the camera and warning the U.S.: “We shall come at you from your front and back, your right and left.”

The new message came days after the world got its first current look at bin Laden in nearly three years, with the release of a video Saturday in which the terror leader addressed the American people.

The latest videotape, of the hijacker’s testament, had not yet been posted on extremist web sites. But IntelCenter, a monitoring group in suburban Washington, said it had obtained the 47-minute video and provided it to Associated Press Television News.

It begins with an audiotape introduction by bin Laden. While his voice is heard, the video shows a still image of him, raising his finger. In the image, bin Laden has the same dyed-black beard and the same clothes - a white robe and cap and beige cloak - that he had in Saturday’s video.

But it was not known if the audiotape was recently made. In the past, al-Qaida has used footage and audio of bin Laden taped long ago for release later.

In the tape, bin Laden praised al-Shehri, saying he “recognized the truth” that Arab rulers were “vassals” of the West and had “abandoned the balance of (Islamic) revelation.”

“It is true that this young man was little in years, but the faith in his heart was big,” he said.

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Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

It was a bright, sunny Sunday afternoon, and the heat of the day did not deter 1500 people from participating in a most unique dedication of a Sephardic Sefer Torah. On September 9th, the internationally renowned Torah outreach organization, Hineni, and its devoted followers marched down Park Avenue in Manhattan with a new Torah scroll written in the Sephardic tradition. The new Torah’s immediate destination was the Edmund J. Safra Synagogue at 11 East 63rd Street, yet its final destination will be in the holy city of Jerusalem, where it will be housed in the Hineni Center near Zion Square. The Hineni chapter in Jerusalem services many young Israelis of Sephardic heritage who are victims of terror, and numerous others who are indigent. The Center, which is in close proximity to clubs and discos, offers a healthy, meaningful alternative to the young people who frequent these places through participation in services, festive Sabbath dinners and inspiring Torah study.

The new Sefer Torah was joined by a very special Sefer Torah, centuries old, that escaped the flames of the Holocaust, and triumphed over Hitler. The tiny Sefer Torah dressed in a sparkling white cover belonged to the great-grandfather five generations back, of Hineni founder and president, Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis. He was a renowned sage, known throughout the Torah world as the Menuchas Osher, a miracle worker and holy man of great erudition who brought blessing and healing to his people. This Torah scroll, especially written for the Menuchos Osher by the illustrious scribe, Rabbi Moshe Soifer of Pscheworsk was passed from generation to generation in the Jungreis family in Hungary. During the years of the Holocaust, it was buried and later dug up by the Nazis and slated to be placed in a Nazi sponsored museum of Jewish artifacts. The goal was to prove that Jews once existed and the Nazis had succeeded in totally eradicating any vestige of Jewish life. Miraculously, this little Torah made its way to the US and back to its rightful heirs.

Both Torahs began their journey down Park Avenue, at the home of Hineni members Alison and Jack Schneider on East 75h Street and Fifth Avenue. Throngs of people started gathering at 4:30 pm to begin the writing of the concluding letters of the new Sefer Torah. Outside the residence, hundreds more gathered in anticipation of this most historic event. The exquisite burgundy chuppah awaited as the Torahs were brought out. Festive music was provided by the Yossi Soibelman orchestra who played atop a Hineni float designed specifically for this occasion. Rebbetzin Jungreis, along with a cadre of young children stood on the float waving Torah flags and blue and white balloons. Torches were also passed out. Before the procession began, Rebbetzin Jungreis told the crowd, “Today, we are witnesses to a most historical event. Never in the history of New York City has Park Avenue ever been blocked to traffic for any event. Today, the little Torah that triumphed over Hitler and the new Sephardic Torah, symbols of the past and the future will will march in unison as a sign of our love for Hashem’s Torah.”

The crowd marched, danced and sang to the tunes of “Ki M’Tzion Teitzei Torah” and “Sissu V’Simchu B’Simchat Torah” among others. The procession turned right on Park Avenue and East 63rd Street towards the Safra Synagogue where several hundred more people had gathered. Upon their arrival, the six Sifrei Torah from the Safra Synagogue were carried outside to greet the new Sefer Torah, housed in a sterling silver case and crown with bells.

“This is just like Simchat Torah”, said Martin Rosenthal, 48, from Queens who came in for this event. “The incredible music, the joyous fanfare, the non-stop dancing. This is the first Hineni event that I’m attending and I am just so very moved and deeply touched by this outstanding outpouring of love for our holy Torah”, he said.

Roy Kastl, 58, from Manhattan said, “I am privileged to be here at this momentous occasion. I am a witness to history being made and I can’t thank Rebbetzin Jungreis enough for all of her hard work. It is a great way to start the New Year and I will never forget it.”

As all of the Torahs made their way into the main sanctuary of the Safra Synagogue, Rabbi Yisroel Jungreis took the podium and welcomed the jubilant audience by telling them that the Torah is compared to a song. Everyone at every age can enjoy it and grow from it. Rabbi Abadi of the Safra Synagogue told the audience that in the parsha that we just read on Shabbat, Netzavim-Vayelech, Moshe commands us to write a Sefer Torah, lest we forget the word of G-d. “Today,” he said, “We have fulfilled the last commandment of the Torah. What a perfect way to usher in the New Year, by performing and fulfilling this cherished mitzvah”. He then thanked Rebbetzin Jungreis for sponsoring this Hachnassat Sefer Torah.

Rebbetzin Jungreis, with tears in her eyes, then spoke. “Firstly, I wish to thank our very dear Hineni friends, Debbi and Jimmy Lustig, who so graciously and generously sponsored this Sefer Torah. I also wish to thank Alison and Jack Schneider for opening their home to us and for the beautiful reception that they made. And I extend my appreciation to each and every person who sponsored a portion and letters in the new Sefer Torah and to every one of you for coming today to participate in the joyous procession. People came from all over the country to be here and we are most grateful.”

“Today, we sanctified the name of G-d on Park Avenue. Today, men, women and children joined together to pay homage to both an Ashkenaz Torah that survived the Holocaust and a Sephardic Torah that represents a beacon of light and hope for the future of our people”, said Rebbetzin Jungreis. “Torah is symbolic of our history. We are all witnesses to miracles. Today we can all say that Am Yisroel lives. In the parsha that we read on Shabbat, Moshe Rabbeinu is told by G-d that his people will betray His covenant, but they one day will return. Then G-d commanded Moses to tell the people that we are all obligated to write a Sefer Torah so we can remember these holy words and through this Torah we will return. And today we have returned. Today, every soul from Sinai, all of our ancestors and our forebearers were present. Right before Rosh HaShanah, we are showing the world and telling our G-d that we wish to return to His word and His Torah.”


Fern Sidman holds a B.A, in political science from Brooklyn College. She was the educational coordinator for the Betar Youth Movement in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was national director of the Jewish Defense League from 1983-1985. She was a researcher for several books written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTK”L. She was the managing editor of the publication entitled, The Voice of Judea, and is a regular contributor to its web site. She is currently a writer and journalist living in New York City. Her articles have appeared in The Jewish Press, The Jewish Advocate, The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and numerous Jewish and general web sites including, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Pipes and Michael Freund.
We are pleased to have Ms. Sidman as a regular contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

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September 11 - Let Us Never Forget

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

Some days I feel that America has forgotten what we went through 6 years ago. With our American 30 second attention span, Iy pains me to see just how relaxed we have become.
Cox and Forkum have an excerpt from a book, Never Forget: An Oral History of September 11, 2001, by Mitchell Fink and Lois Mathias. This book is a collection of eye-witness accounts of the horrible day.

On the morning of September 11, I was on floor 105, tower 1. I had an 8 a.m. meeting set up with a client. He was bringing by some tech people to do some due diligence on our technology company called E-Speed. I get to work usually around seven, seven-fifteen. At eight, the client called to tell me they were running late. And I said fine. But I reminded him to bring photo ID downstairs. Ever since the last terrorist attack in ‘93, the building requires photo ID downstairs. He’s been there before, so he knew the drill. He said, “Fine. No problem.”At 8:40, I get a phone call from the security desk downstairs, asking me if I’m expecting visitors. I said yes. “Well, they’re here,” they said. “But one of them forgot their ID.”I’m 105 flights up. The commute to get downstairs takes about five minutes, especially around that time. So I’m annoyed, obviously, because I have to go down now to sign these people in after I just told them to bring ID. I look at this desk assistant across from me, thinking maybe she’ll help out and go down, but she’s on the phone. She’s also about eight months pregnant. She’s a few weeks from maternity leave and she’s on the phone talking to a friend and she’s on a website looking at bassinets and cribs. A very nice girl expecting her first child. So how lazy am I? I decide to go myself. …… I take these two elevator rides down. I take the elevator from 105 to 78, change, and take the express down to the ground. I got down to the lobby. Our elevator banks actually face the visitors’ gallery. And I started walking over to the visitors’ gallery, I’d say it’s about thirty yards, and they’re standing there waiting for me. And I remember yelling, “Which one of you knuckleheads forgot your ID?”

And as I say this, you hear this really loud screeching sound. I turn around and it’s kind of coming from the elevators. So I run away from it, like ten steps, and look back. And the elevators are free-falling. Then, from the middle elevator bank, not the one I came down on, but from the middle one, a huge fireball explodes in the lobby. This huge fireball is coming right toward me. People got incinerated. And I remember just looking at this thing, not feeling scared, but just sad because I knew I was going to die. But as quickly as it came toward me, it actually sucked back in on itself, and it was gone. It left a lot of smoke and everything was blown out, all the glass and revolving doors leading into the shopping area. All I felt was a big wave of heat come over me, like when you put your face too close to a fireplace. My customer and my general counsel and I just ran out. The three of us ran over the overpass to where the Financial Center is. We went down to where the marina is, where the yachts are. And that’s when we found out what happened, that a plane had hit the building.

I looked up and saw this big gaping hole. I said, “What’s that falling out of the window?”

My general counsel looks at me like I’m nuts. And he says, “That’s people jumping out.” …

Cantor Fitzgerald had four floors in the North Tower — 101, 103, 104, and 105. Nobody got out on those floors. Everyone who was upstairs perished. There were a lot of phone calls to wives and husbands at around nine o’clock saying good-bye, as though they knew they were going to die.

We must never forget that 3,000 innocent people died that day. We must never forget that there are Muslim terrorist in the world, who right this moment, want nothing more than for us to follow these 3,000 people in death. They want nothing more than to kill you, me, our spouses and our children. We must never forget that they are working non-stop, at this very moment, to achieve that end.
Any time you get tired of hearing about the war in Iraq, or the latest terrorist plot, keep in mind September 11th, 2001. Remember 3,000 innocent people who died a horrible death. Remember their families who will bear these scars the rest of their lives. Remember the photos of people choosing to fall hundreds of feet to their deaths instead of burn to death.

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