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Quote Servetus Replybullet Posted: 18 September 2006 at 5:41pm

I suspect that Danny Dworsky and the Rothchilds are conspiring to take over the world.  Although the odds are against him, I hope that Danny wins!  He won’t force us to eat ribah (usury), is probably the better musician, and dares to show his emotions in public.  Also, and to change the subject somewhat, I am at this point far more inclined to salute “Uncle Dan” (those familiar with the rudiments of demonology will appreciate this) than our usual Uncle Samael!


Continuing with demonology and all that, those of you who know and love -well, who at least appreciate- me know that each year, near this time (Halloween, naturally, because I am a non-Muslim Yank, affected by my crypto-Pagan culture), I become, like, totally freaked out about something which gives me the creeps.  This year, I am already starting to feel frightened when I consider those weird, pulsa dinura curses that Agivdor Eskin reportedly invoked upon PM Yitzhak Rabin prior to the latter’s assassination.  That stuff is scary!  On second thought, with potential enemies like that (Eskin) in Israel, I hope that Danny never does rise to world power, conspire to do so though he freely may (or may not)!


Whisper, I, too, miss Ofra Haza.  That Yemeni could sing (the soulful “slave song” comes to mind, which I practically wore out)!  It’s not that Barry Chamish is always the most reliable of Israeli reporters, though he certainly ranks among the more colorful, but have you read his assessment of the, well, dodgy circumstances which (are thought to have) surrounded her death?  The plot, as always with Mr. Chamish, thickens. 


(Danny, but seriously, all the best with your daughter's CD!)




Edited by Servetus
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Quote Daniel Dworsky Replybullet Posted: 18 September 2006 at 11:56pm

My wife Zohar who is one of the most witty people I know once said to me
when I was upset about not finding my lucky shirt before a particularly
important gig, (Opening night) Zohar said, "Superstition causes bad luck"

In the end I performed with out the shirt in a black Jellaba left behind by a
US state department guy who interviewed Zohar and I regarding our
"Separate reality Politics"

No one bothered to tell me that only women wear black Jellabas of this
type (Embroidered) Although it had a wonderfully sliming effect really a
shame... Never mind
I Just thought it
was an extra long Dashiki (African Shirt) and never gave it a thought      
Interesting night. Mayaj (My baby girl) and Fouad Suliman were the hits of
the evening.
Several nice men left me their business cards. My daughter explained
everything to me after the show. I said. "I thought they were interested in
private performances."

"That's right Daddy" she said patting me sympathetically on the back.
"It's time for his nap now." She informed my band who had until that
moment controlled them selves the whole night with out openly laughing
at me. My point? Happy Halloween X-ray your loot.

Edited by Daniel Dworsky
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Quote Whisper Replybullet Posted: 19 September 2006 at 2:10am

We can all see, spells do work!

How else would a Norte Americano, an Israeli and an Afghano just turn into a cofirmed if it were not for that Uri Avenry spell?

(No need to mail me a Haloween mask, I already look like a monstro!)

(Uncs, I am going straight to Tower Records, best of luck for Mayaj)

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Quote Servetus Replybullet Posted: 19 September 2006 at 2:07pm

Concerning that black Jellaba and the business cards:  

Naturally, while that tale was being told, I was at least somewhat reminded of me and of that time in Tokyo when I decided to go native by buying an Issey Miyake outfit, light cotton shirt and trousers.  Only later, in the evening, when the otherwise formal and intensely private Japanese actually began to look at me and to break protocol by occasionally pointing in my direction did it occur to me that I might be walking about the Roppongi district in my p.j.'s (pajamas)!



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Quote Daniel Dworsky Replybullet Posted: 21 September 2006 at 2:14pm
The essence of peace is to connect two opposites.

If you see somebody whose opinion is the very opposite of yours, don't
believe that it is impossible to be at peace with him.

Also, if you see two people (peoples) that are two opposites - don't say
that it is impossible to make peace between them.

On the contrary, that is the essence of the completeness of peace - to
make peace prevail between two opposites.

                           Rabbi Nachman of Bratislav

(Rabbi Nachman, 1772-1811, a mystic and ascetic, was one of the most
celebrated Ukrainian Hassidic rabbis. He has many enthusiastic followers
in Israel and elsewhere.)
[email protected]

                Gush Shalom ad in Haaretz,
                On the eve of the Jewish New Year
                September 22, 2006

Shana Tova to all the Jewish and Ramadan Mubarrak to all the Muslim
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Quote Whisper Replybullet Posted: 21 September 2006 at 3:02pm

Uncs, you are uncs just because you always beat me to it. I was going to say Shana Tova to you. Going to London to join a few good friends there this weekend.


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Quote Daniel Dworsky Replybullet Posted: 23 September 2006 at 3:00pm
Uri Avnery

                            Muhammad's   Sword

Since the days when Roman Emperors threw Christians to the lions, the
relations between the emperors and the heads of the church have
undergone many changes.

Constantine the Great, who became Emperor in the year 306 - exactly
1700 years ago - encouraged the practice of Christianity in the empire,
which included Palestine. Centuries later, the church split into an Eastern
(Orthodox) and a Western (Catholic) part. In the West, the Bishop of
Rome, who acquired the title of Pope, demanded that the Emperor accept
his superiority.

The struggle between the Emperors and the Popes played a central role in
European history and divided the peoples. It knew ups and downs. Some
Emperors dismissed or expelled a Pope, some Popes dismissed or
excommunicated an Emperor. One of the Emperors, Henry IV, "walked to
Canossa", standing for three days barefoot in the snow in front of the
Pope's castle, until the Pope deigned to annul his excommunication.

But there were times when Emperors and Popes lived in peace with each
other. We are witnessing such a period today. Between the present Pope,
Benedict XVI, and the present Emperor, George Bush II, there exists a
wonderful harmony. Last week's speech by the Pope, which aroused a
world-wide storm, went well with Bush's crusade against "Islamofascism",
in the context of the "Clash of Civilizations".

IN HIS lecture at a German university, the 265th Pope described what he
sees as a huge difference between Christianity and Islam: while
Christianity is based on reason, Islam denies it. While Christians see the
logic of God's actions, Muslims deny that there is any such logic in the
actions of Allah.

As a Jewish atheist, I do not intend to enter the fray of this debate. It is
much beyond my humble abilities to understand the logic of the Pope.
But I cannot overlook one passage, which concerns me too, as an Israeli
living near the fault-line of this "war of civilizations".

In order to prove the lack of reason in Islam, the Pope asserts that the
prophet Muhammad ordered his followers to spread their religion by the
sword. According to the Pope, that is unreasonable, because faith is born
of the soul, not of the body. How can the sword influence the soul?

To support his case, the Pope quoted - of all people - a Byzantine
Emperor, who belonged, of course, to the competing Eastern Church. At
the end of the 14th century, the Emperor Manuel II Palaeologus told of a
debate he had - or so he said (its occurrence is in doubt) - with an
unnamed Persian Muslim scholar. In the heat of the argument, the
Emperor (according to himself) flung the following words at his adversary:

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will
find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the
sword the faith he preached".

These words give rise to three questions: (a) Why did the Emperor say
them? (b) Are they true? (c) Why did the present Pope quote them?

WHEN MANUEL II wrote his treatise, he was the head of a dying empire.
He assumed power in 1391, when only a few provinces of the once
illustrious empire remained. These, too, were already under Turkish

At that point in time, the Ottoman Turks had reached the banks of the
Danube. They had conquered Bulgaria and the north of Greece, and had
twice defeated relieving armies sent by Europe to save the Eastern
Empire. In *1452, only a few years after Manuel's death, his capital,
Constantinople (the present Istanbul) fell to the Turks, putting an end to
the Empire that had lasted for more than a thousand years.

During his reign, Manuel made the rounds of the capitals of Europe in an
attempt to drum up support. He promised to reunite the church. There is
no doubt that he wrote his religious treatise in order to incite the
Christian countries against the Turks and convince them to start a new
crusade. The aim was practical, theology was serving politics.

In this sense, the quote serves exactly the requirements of the present
Emperor, George Bush II. He, too, wants to unite the Christian world
against the mainly Muslim "Axis of Evil". Moreover, the Turks are again
knocking on the doors of Europe, this time peacefully. It is well known
that the Pope supports the forces that object to the entry of Turkey into
the European Union.

IS THERE any truth in Manuel's argument?

The pope himself threw in a word of caution. As a serious and renowned
theologian, he could not afford to falsify written texts. Therefore, he
admitted that the Qur'an specifically forbade the spreading of the faith by
force. He quoted the second Sura, verse 256 (strangely fallible, for a
pope, he meant verse 257) which says: "There must be no coercion in
matters of faith".

How can one ignore such an unequivocal statement? The Pope simply
argues that this commandment was laid down by the prophet when he
was at the beginning of his career, still weak and powerless, but that later
on he ordered the use of the sword in the service of the faith. Such an
order does not exist in the Qur'an. True, Muhammad called for the use of
the sword in his war against opposing tribes - Christian, Jewish and
others - in Arabia, when he was building his state. But that was a political
act, not a religious one; basically a fight for territory, not for the
spreading of the faith.

Jesus said: "You will recognize them by their fruits." The treatment of
other religions by Islam must be judged by a simple test: How did the
Muslim rulers behave for more than a thousand years, when they had the
power to "spread the faith by the sword"?

Well, they just did not.

For many centuries, the Muslims ruled Greece. Did the Greeks become
Muslims? Did anyone even try to Islamize them? On the contrary,
Christian Greeks held the highest positions in the Ottoman
administration. The Bulgarians, Serbs, Romanians, Hungarians and other
European nations lived at one time or another under Ottoman rule and
clung to their Christian faith. Nobody compelled them to become Muslims
and all of them remained devoutly Christian.

True, the Albanians did convert to Islam, and so did the Bosniaks. But
nobody argues that they did this under duress. They adopted Islam in
order to become favorites of the government and enjoy the fruits.

In 1099, the Crusaders conquered Jerusalem and massacred its Muslim
and Jewish inhabitants indiscriminately, in the name of the gentle Jesus.
At that time, 400 years into the occupation of Palestine by the Muslims,
Christians were still the majority in the country. Throughout this long
period, no effort was made to impose Islam on them. Only after the
expulsion of the Crusaders from the country, did the majority of the
inhabitants start to adopt the Arabic language and the Muslim faith - and
they were the forefathers of most of today's Palestinians.

THERE IS no evidence whatsoever of any attempt to impose Islam on the
Jews. As is well known, under Muslim rule the Jews of Spain enjoyed a
bloom the like of which the Jews did not enjoy anywhere else until almost
our time. Poets like Yehuda Halevy wrote in Arabic, as did the great
Maimonides. In Muslim Spain, Jews were ministers, poets, scientists. In
Muslim Toledo, Christian, Jewish and Muslim scholars worked together
and translated the ancient Greek philosophical and scientific texts. That
was, indeed, the Golden Age. How would this have been possible, had the
Prophet decreed the "spreading of the faith by the sword"?

What happened afterwards is even more telling. When the Catholics re-
conquered Spain from the Muslims, they instituted a reign of religious
terror. The Jews and the Muslims were presented with a cruel choice: to
become Christians, to be massacred or to leave. And where did the
hundreds of thousand of Jews, who refused to abandon their faith,
escape? Almost all of them were received with open arms in the Muslim
countries. The Sephardi ("Spanish") Jews settled all over the Muslim world,
from Morocco in the west to Iraq in the east, from Bulgaria (then part of
the Ottoman Empire) in the north to Sudan in the south. Nowhere were
they persecuted. They knew nothing like the tortures of the Inquisition,
the flames of the auto-da-fe, the pogroms, the terrible mass-expulsions
that took place in almost all Christian countries, up to the Holocaust.

WHY? Because Islam expressly prohibited any persecution of the "peoples
of the book". In Islamic society, a special place was reserved for Jews and
Christians. They did not enjoy completely equal rights, but almost. They
had to pay a special poll-tax, but were exempted from military service - a
trade-off that was quite welcome to many Jews. It has been said that
Muslim rulers frowned upon any attempt to convert Jews to Islam even by
gentle persuasion - because it entailed the loss of taxes.

Every honest Jew who knows the history of his people cannot but feel a
deep sense of gratitude to Islam, which has protected the Jews for fifty
generations, while the Christian world persecuted the Jews and tried
many times "by the sword" to get them to abandon their faith.

THE STORY about "spreading the faith by the sword" is an evil legend, one
of the myths that grew up in Europe during the great wars against the
Muslims - the reconquista of Spain by the Christians, the Crusades and
the repulsion of the Turks, who almost conquered Vienna. I suspect that
the German Pope, too, honestly believes in these fables. That means that
the leader of the Catholic world, who is a Christian theologian in his own
right, did not make the effort to study the history of other religions.

Why did he utter these words in public? And why now?

There is no escape from viewing them against the background of the new
Crusade of Bush and his evangelist supporters, with his slogans of
"Islamofascism" and the "Global War on Terrorism" - when "terrorism" has
become a synonym for Muslims. For Bush's handlers, this is a cynical
attempt to justify the domination of the world's oil resources. Not for the
first time in history, a religious robe is spread to cover the nakedness of
economic interests; not for the first time, a robbers' expedition becomes
a Crusade.

The speech of the Pope blends into this effort. Who can foretell the dire

* Constantinople fell in 1453

Edited by Daniel Dworsky
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Quote Daniel Dworsky Replybullet Posted: 24 September 2006 at 3:34am
Gush Shalom

In a pre-dawn raid on Friday, 8 September 2006, Israeli security forces
closed down the offices of Ansar al-Sajin (The Prisoners' Friends
Association), an NGO registered under Israeli law which offers support to
Palestinian political prisoners. Police officers and General Security Services
agents confiscated computers and hundreds of documents from the
organization’s offices in the Galilee town of Majd al-Krum. Raids were
conducted also in Ansar al-Sajin offices in the West Bank. The raid
followed a formal declaration by the Israeli Minister of Defense that the
organization was illegal.
Ansar al-Sajin has been active since 1979, helping prisoners and their
families to cope with the difficulties they face during periods of
imprisonment. Thus, beyond providing legal aid to prisoners, the
organization has also helped Palestinian families to overcome
bureaucratic obstacles in organizing family visits and, in cases of
difficulties with the postal service, transferring letters from the Occupied
Territories to prisons located within the 1967 borders of Israel. It has also
cared for the health of prisoners and helped them to receive medical

Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, has taken on
the legal battle on behalf of Ansar al-Sajin and is challenging the Defense
Minister's decision. However, the legal battle is not enough. The decision
to shut down the organization's offices and the police raid are clear cases
of political harassment, consistent with previous attempts to obstruct and
hinder the work of any human rights organization dealing with the
welfare of Palestinian political prisoners. In this case, the order came in
the wake of the launch of a campaign by the organization, in which it
called for the inclusion of 1948 Palestinian prisoners (citizens of Israel) in
the current talks on the exchange of prisoners.

We call upon the international human rights community to protest against
Israel’s actions in this matter. Please call or write to the Israeli Embassy in
your country or directly to the Israeli Ministry of Defense and the Prime
Minister’s office expressing your concern about their blatantly anti-
democratic behavior.

The Ministry of Defense:
Tel: 972-3-6975423; Fax: 972-3-6976711
Email: [email protected]

The Prime Minister’s Office:
Tel. 972-33-6109898, 972-2-6705555; Fax: 972-2-6705475
Email: [email protected]

Adalah, The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel
Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI)
Hamoked Center for the Defence of the Individual
Physicians for Human Rights (PHR)
The Israeli Action Committee for Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees
Women's Organization for Political Prisoners (WOFPP)

Edited by Daniel Dworsky
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