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Philadelphia - Hillary Clinton is questioning whether Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has the temperament to be commander in chief. She says Trump “can’t even handle the rough-and-tumble of a presidential campaign.” Clinton says Trump loses his cool at the “slightest provocation” — when he’s gotten tough questions from reporters, when he’s challenged in a debate or when he sees a protester at a rally. Here’s her take: “A man you can bait with a tweet is not a man we can trust with nuclear weapons.”
Philadelphia - There are some signs of discontent amid the celebration of Hillary Clinton’s acceptance of the Democratic presidential nomination. As Clinton spoke, several people in the crowd at the Democratic National Convention unfurled a banner that said “Wikileaks.” It’s a reference to the leaked party emails that some say show the Democratic National Committee favored Clinton over primary rival Bernie Sanders. Near the Hawaii delegation, a few delegates waved signs for Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Some Sanders delegates sat quietly throughout the speech. For much of Clinton’s speech, a bright red sign stood out from the sea of campaign posters. It read, “Keep your promises.” Clinton struggled to keep command of the arena. She wa...
Ankara, Turkey - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has slammed the United States for its reaction to a failed military coup in Turkey, accusing it of harboring the man behind the plot. Ankara has demanded the United States extradite Fethullah Gulen, a cleric living in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania. The government has accused Gulen of having masterminded the failed July 15 coup, which left 290 people dead. Gulen has denied any prior knowledge of the attempted putsch, while Washington has asked for evidence of his involvement. The president lashed out at an American military official who he said commented on the detention of thousands of military personnel in the wake of the coup. “It’s not up to you to make that decision. Who are you? Know your place…...
Philadelphia - Donald Trump is criticizing Hillary Clinton for not saying the words “radical Islam” in her nomination acceptance speech. Trump says, “Our way of life is under threat by Radical Islam and Hillary Clinton cannot even bring herself to say the words.” Trump unleased the criticism in a series of tweets in reaction to the speech. He is picking up a frequent Republican criticism of Democrats’ approach to fighting radicalism. Neither Clinton nor President Barack Obama uses the phrase “radical Islam” because they say it is misleading — the ideology motivating terrorists does not reflect true Islam, they say. Republicans argue the failure to use the label has hampered the fight. In her speech, Clinton said she will defeat the ...
Dallas, TX -  The pilots’ union president said Thursday that American Airlines is reducing its safety margin by “manipulating” flight plans with tactics that include faster speeds. The union official suggested that American is trying to avoid canceling flights when crews push the limits of their legally allowed work shifts. American did not respond directly to the union leader’s claims. A spokesman said the airline takes safety and regulations seriously. Dan Carey, who just started a three-year term as president of the Allied Pilots Association, said in a note to members that pilots were reporting pressure to approve faster flight plans. Federal rules generally limit airline pilots to shifts of nine to 14 hours, depending on when the pilot’s w...
New York - Stretching just 10 minutes a day might help ease menopause and depression symptoms in middle-aged women, a small study suggests. “Light-intensity exercises such as stretching have not been previously evaluated for its impact on menopausal and depressive symptoms,” lead researcher Yuko Kai told Reuters Health by email. Forty Japanese women, ages 40 to 61 years, participated in the study at the Physical Fitness Research Institute, Meiji Yasuda Life Foundation of Health and Welfare in Tokyo. Twenty of the women were randomly assigned to stretch 10 minutes a day before bedtime for three weeks. The other 20 were instructed to remain sedentary before bed. The research team evaluated the women’s menopausal symptoms using 10 questions about vasomotor sympto...
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London - If you spend all day sitting, then you might want to schedule some time for a brisk walk — just make sure you can spare at least an hour. Scientists analyzing data from more than 1 million people found that it takes about 60 to 75 minutes of “moderate intensity” exercise to undo the damage of sitting for at least eight hours a day. Not exercising and sitting all day is as dangerous as being obese or smoking, they found. And the added risk of parking yourself in front of a television for 5 hours or more a day after sitting at the office is so high even the hour of exercise is not enough to reverse the ill effects of sitting. It has long been suspected that sitting a lot, at work or at home, is not healthy, because it can weaken the heart, arteries, bon...
Oswiecim, Poland - Hunched on a bench near the gate to the Auschwitz death camp site in Poland, Pope Francis prayed silently on Friday in tribute to 1.5 million people, most of them Jews, gassed there by Nazi occupiers during World War Two. Marking the third day of his trip to Poland for an international gathering of Catholic youth, Francis spent a few minutes speaking quietly and exchanging gifts with about 12 Auschwitz survivors, including a 101-year-old woman. One of the male survivors gave the pope a picture of himself surrounded by other inmates in a bunk, and asked Francis to sign it. The somber-looking pope kissed each survivor. The Argentine-born pontiff, 79, made no statement as he proceeded to walk through the barely-lit corridors of the drab, brick building of Ausch...
Daily Halacha
Asara B'Teves

(On) the 10th of Tevet  Nebuchadnetzer, the King of Babylon, reached Jerusalem,  and laid siege (to the) ramparts, which lead on to the destruction. (KSA 121:3)

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It’s hard to believe that we have come so far in our dream of making Aliyah. Or that it is so imminent. T minus 5 days and counting. After living in Baltimore for 30 years, my husband Avi and I are making aliyah to Yerushalayim. We have 3 sons in Israel but also a daughter whom we are leaving behind in Lakewood. Ouch. Hurts to even write it. But that pretty much much encapsulates the aliyah experience. Very bittersweet. Tremendous excitement but also sadness and loss. And fear. A lot of fear. So, how did we get here? A brief (thankfully) review of the timeline that led us here: Dec. 2014 - I get a job offer (Systems Engineer) where they will consider letting me take my job with me to Israel. The company is called Skyline Technology Services. July 2015 - My mother is nifteres. She ...
“The anti-Semitism that is threaded throughout the Republican Party of late goes straight to the feet of Donald Trump.” That, according to Florida Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chair of the Democratic National Committee. Mr. Trump, she adds, has “clearly demonstrated” anti-Semitism “throughout his candidacy.” Evidence proffered for the Republican nominee’s alleged Jew-hatred includes the now-famous image disseminated by the Trump campaign, which depicted Hillary Clinton accompanied by mounds of money and a six-pointed star. The image, it turned out, had been borrowed from a white supremacist website. Then there is the candidate’s speech to a group of Republican Jewish donors in which he said that he didn’t want thei...
Parsha Hashavua
Parshas Pinchas - Peace

[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memoriam to Shaya through the sweet words and thoughtful insights of  his Divrei Torah. BJL readers will remember his weekly column on the Parsha and on various Torah ideas and concepts. These meaningful words will help us remember this special young man who will be sorely missed and for those who did not merit to know him, this will be the most appropriate way for them to become familiar with who he was.


This week’s Parsha begins by informing us that Pinchas received the covenant of peace rewarding his act of zealotry.
At first glance this seems ironic, a covenant of PEACE for being a ZEALOT???

But if we think about it a little deeper, with the understanding that Shalom means more than just peace but rather harmony and perfection, then it makes ‘perfect’ sense.

We are not a people who act solely with Chesed, as unbridled Chesed leads to immorality... Nor are we a people who act solely with Gevurah-strict judgment, as too much Gevurah in Chinuch pushes kids away... Rather we are a people who seek to fuse our Midos into perfection; using Chesed in its proper time, Gevurah in its proper time, and likewise with all other Midos.

The proper definition of shalom is having a perfect balance in all midos and using each mida in its proper time.

This is the hallmark of our Gedolim, a few that I have merited to meet and see for myself, and many more of whom I have read about. They may have some very strong opinions about certain topics and certain practices, but when you come to speak with them, their warmth, love and care is so evident.

This, I suggest, is the understanding of the covenant of Shalom concerning  Pinchas. Pinchas, as the Torah emphasizes, was a grandson of Aharon, the quintessential lover of mankind. Pinchas had in his blood the warmth and love of Aharon. Yet when it came to matters that he had to take a strong stance on and act zealously, he did so. Hence he merited the covenant of SHALOM for his act!

May we all take this lesson to heart, to always work hard towards having a synthesis in our Midos, using each one positively in its appropriate time.
 

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Philadelphia - In her speech accepting the Democratic nomination, Hillary Clinton wrongly implied Donald Trump has proposed banning Islam in America and sketched out a plan for defeating Islamic State militants that merely mirrors what the U.S. is already trying to do. Clinton spoke Thursday night to the largest TV audience she is likely to have until the presidential debates, meaning many Americans were probably hearing of her agenda for the first time. Although she brings plenty of policy detail when stacked against the broad-brush ideas of her Republican rival, in some cases there’s less than meets the eye to what she says she will do. A college education, for example, might not end up as debt-free for everyone as she suggested. For his part, Trump spun a story about th...
Philadelphia -  Text of Hillary Clinton’s speech Thursday accepting the presidential nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, as provided by the Clinton campaign. __ Thank you! Thank you for that amazing welcome. And Chelsea, thank you. I’m so proud to be your mother and so proud of the woman you’ve become. Thanks for bringing Marc into our family, and Charlotte and Aidan into the world. And Bill, that conversation we started in the law library 45 years ago is still going strong. It’s lasted through good times that filled us with joy, and hard times that tested us. And I’ve even gotten a few words in along the way. On Tuesday night, I was so happy to see that my Explainer-in-Chief is still on the job. I’m also gr...
Event
Kiddush Levana Aug 06 6:51 am - Aug 18 1:13 am
July
29
Tammuz 23
DEVELOPING –  A San Diego police officer died from injuries sustained in a shooting late Thursday, authorities said. Another officer who was wounded was undergoing surgery. Police arrested one person in the shooting and weren’t pursuing any other suspects after a long manhunt in the Southcrest neighborhood. The suspect hasn’t been identified. Police said the officers were shot while making a stop and immediately called for help. The fallen officer suffered many gunshot wounds. The officers weren’t immediately identified. Video footage showed officers out in force with numerous squad cars with emergency lights flashing lining a street, officers on foot, and a helicopter buzz overhead. The shooting comes with law officers around the country on aler...
[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memoriam to Shaya through the sweet words and thoughtful insights of  his Divrei Torah. BJL readers will remember his weekly column on the Parsha and on various Torah ideas and concepts. These meaningful words will help us remember this special young man who will be sorely missed and for those who did not merit to know him, this will be the most appropriate way for them to become familiar with who he was. This week’s Parsha begins by informing us that Pinchas received the covenant of peace rewarding his act of zealotry. At first glance this seems ironic, a covenant of PEACE for being a ZEALOT??? ...
SimchasSimchas Simcha
In reward for his courageous act, Pinchas is promised by G-d that He will give him ‘His covenant of peace’. The word used for peace is שלום. The Talmud reveals that there is a tradition that the third letter in this word, ו, should be written קטועה, ‘fragmented’. Some understand this to mean it should be written as a regular ‘vav’ though segmented with a gap in its leg. Others say it is written as a small letter ‘vav’, almost looking like a י, ‘yud’. This is the only instance in all of Torah where this unusual letter appears this way. Instead of the word reading simply as שלום, it now reads as if the word were שלים, due to either the miniature vav that looks like a yud, or to the top half of the segmented vav ...
New York - Online shoppers want their packages — now. And Amazon is spending heavily to make sure that happens. Amazon’s Prime service has, at heart, always been about free two-day shipping. The $99 annual subscription includes a variety of other goodies, but the near-instant gratification of fast, no-extra-cost delivery was the program’s original draw, and remains central to its appeal for its estimated 60 million subscribers. But fast delivery — everything from Prime’s two-day service to one-day or one-hour options, grocery delivery and delivery for third party sellers — doesn’t come cheap. In the April-June quarter, for instance, Amazon spent $3.88 billion on its distribution network, or what it calls “fulfillment,” up 35 p...
Nichum AveilimNichum Aveilim Aveilim
Washington -  Donald Trump entertained an Iowa audience Thursday with an animated account of how he would have wrung a better nuclear deal out of Iran if he’d been president when it was negotiated. But there was more fable than fact in his soliloquy. It was one of a number of swings and misses from the Republican presidential candidate in a speech delivered hours before his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton, was taking the stage in Philadelphia to accept her party’s nomination. A look at some of the claims from the political maelstrom Thursday: TRUMP, boasting about how he would have conducted talks with Iran over reducing its nuclear weapons capabilities: “I would have said sorry, we can’t give you the $150 billion back. We want to give you the ...
Washington - John Hinckley Jr. shot four people outside a Washington hotel on March 30, 1981, but two of his victims understandably got most of the attention: President Ronald Reagan and his press secretary, James Brady. Two other men — Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy and District of Columbia police officer Thomas Delahanty — each took a bullet to protect the president. Thirty-five years later, they’ve lived to see Hinckley freed. On Thursday, both were still coming to terms with the news that Hinckley, now 61, will soon be released from a Washington psychiatric hospital to live full-time with his 90-year-old mother in Williamsburg, Virginia. A judge ordered Wednesday that Hinckley can leave the hospital as soon as Aug. 5, with numerous restrictions. Th...
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New York - A group of at least six wealthy Republican donors is urging the billionaire Koch brothers to step off the sidelines of the U.S. presidential election to back Donald Trump, arguing they will want influence with the New York businessman they have harshly criticized if he wins the White House in November. The financiers, prominent members of the sprawling 700-member Koch donor network, have been making their case in emails and phone calls to Charles and David Koch ahead of their bi-annual donor seminar, which begins Saturday in Colorado, according to four donors involved in the loosely-coordinated effort and advisors representing two others. An endorsement from the Kochs would be a radical departure: the industrialist brothers have railed against Trump’s “mon...
This series is dedicated in memory of Hallel Ariel Hy’d and Rabbi Miki Mark Hy’d; two precious neshamos (souls) who gave so much and had so much more to give.  May their memories bring us closer to one another. The Lord spoke to Moses saying:  Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying: This is how you shall bless the children of Israel, saying to them: "May the Lord bless you and watch over you.  May the Lord cause His countenance to shine to you and favor you. May the Lord raise His countenance toward you and grant you peace. "They shall bestow My Name upon the children of Israel, so that I will bless them (Bamidbar 6:22-27). Blessings can be delivered in any language and by any person.  But God wanted to give the Kohanim (priests) a special verbiage to shower ...
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