IAF aircraft strike underground Hamas terror infrastructure as well as two military targets that belong to its naval force. IAF aircraft on Tuesday night struck underground Hamas terror infrastructure in northern Gaza, as well as two additional military targets that belong to the terror organization's naval force, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said. “The strikes were in response to the event that took place yesterday morning, when a number of terrorists infiltrated Israel and set a military post on fire,” said the statement. “Additionally, the strikes w...
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Baltimore, MD - May 18, 2018 - The Baltimore community welcomed HaRav Yisroel Reisman, shlita, Rosh Yeshiva of Torah Vodaas, pulpit rabbi, noted author, and popular lecturer, for a special presentation on Wednesday evening, May 16. The occasion was a siyum of all of the Neviim and Kesuvim by a small devoted chabura led by HaRav Yissachar Frand, shlita. In his introductory remarks, Rabbi Frand noted that he had served as a scholar in residence at Rabbi Reisman's shul during the past year, so that this night's lecture had an element of reciprocity. The Baltimore Connection In truth, there are deeper connections between these two talmidei chachomim. Both Rabbi Reisman and Rabbi Frand have given exceptionally popular weekly lectures for decades within the same genre of Torah sc...
Jerusalem - Police rescue volunteers found a missing couple in the Negev after they made an SOS sign out of stones, the Israel Police announced on Tuesday. The couple’s family reported them missing on Monday after they had set off on a trip and had not been in contact since Sunday morning. The man and woman, both in their 30s and from Tel Aviv, had booked a room at a hotel in the Negev but never arrived, having decided to go for a walk first. After walking some 15 kilometers, they realized that they had gotten lost and decided to make themselves a shelter near Nahal Nekarot. The Search and Rescue unit of the Negev mountain region received a call at 2 a.m. on Monday about the missing couple. Volunteers from the unit found the couple’s vehicle abandoned in the Ramon Crater. L...
Unknown group takes responsibility for polluting beaches with dangerous objects, threatens series of terror attacks. Two shores of lakes north of Toronto were closed to visitors after broken glass bottles, nails, and needles were found strewn about. Some bottles were buried in the ground with the jagged edges deliberately facing up. Ontario police are investigating the affair and it is not known who is responsible for distributing dangerous objects on beaches. A letter was sent a few weeks ago to a local newspaper with a message from the "Revolutionary Islamic Force" claiming responsibility for sabotaging beaches north of Toronto and warning that similar operations would be carried out on other beaches throughout and north of Toronto. The letter notes the motive for the action is Can...
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The New York Legislature on Tuesday appointed Barbara Underwood interim attorney general two weeks after Eric Schneiderman suddenly resigned as the state's top legal chief amid allegations he acted inappropriately with four women he dated. Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie announced that 190 lawmakers voted for Underwood out of the 213-seat joint session of the Democrat-controlled Assembly and Republican-led Senate. Under state law, the full Legislature is required to vote on the attorney general's replacement should the job become vacant. Schneiderman officially resigned two weeks ago after The New Yorker magazine reported he abused four women he had dated. He has denied the allegations. Underwood, the state's solicitor general, was the front-runner...
Michael Phelps was hanging at the pool on Tuesday. No, he's not planning another comeback. He's got a bigger goal to tackle. Mental health. After revealing the depths of his depression — and even thoughts of suicide after his second drunken-driving arrest — Phelps is hoping to make a difference for those who are dealing with similar issues. The 23-time Olympic gold medalist announced a partnership with Talkspace, which provides online therapy, and said he considers it a higher calling than anything he ever did as a swimmer. "Somebody told me yesterday about his daughter going through a very, very deep depression and not really wanting to be alive," Phelps said in an interview with The Associated Press. "She read stories about me opening up. He told me how much t...
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NEW YORK (AP) — A longtime business partner of President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, has pleaded guilty to tax fraud in a deal that requires him to cooperate in any ongoing investigations. New York City taxi magnate Evgeny Freidman entered the guilty plea on Tuesday at a court in Albany. A person briefed on the plea deal says Freidman agreed to cooperate with federal or state authorities. The person wasn't authorized to publicly discuss the case and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. State prosecutors charged Freidman last year with pocketing $5 million in state taxes on taxis he managed. For years he's managed hundreds of cabs, including more than two dozen owned by Cohen. Cohen's business dealings are under investig...
MEXICO CITY (AP) — A private jet traveling from Austin, Texas, crashed off the end of the runway of the Honduran capital's international airport and broke in half Tuesday, but the crew and passengers were rescued and reportedly out of danger. Video images posted online showed what appeared to be area residents pulling people out of the damaged fuselage of the white Gulfstream jet, while others sprayed it with hand-held fire extinguishers. Firefighters arrived at the scene and doused the wreckage with foam. Part of the plane appeared in photos to lie across a street. The FlightAware website said the flight originated in the Texas capital Tuesday morning, and that was later confirmed by the Honduran Civil Aviation Agency. Federal Aviation Administration records show the plane ...
THE FOLLOWING IS VIA YWN Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas posed for a photo on Tuesday that displays a horrifyingly anti-Semitic depiction of an Israeli soldier killing a Palestinian baby with a gas-filled milk-bottle. The 83-year-old Abbas was in the hospital for a third day with pneumonia, and was filmed walking around the hospital to calm rumors that his condition was worse than being reported. One of the photos showed Abbas reading a newspaper with an Anti-Semitic cartoon on the front cover. The cartoon, created by Arab cartoonist Muhammed Sabaaneh, portrays an Israeli soldier taking a milk bottle from a baby and replacing the bottle with poison. The illustration alludes to the death of eight-month-old Laila al-Ghandour, who was brought to violent Palestinian demonstrat...
Following the deadly Palestinian ‘March of Return,’ a new fleet of boats is set to depart from the Danish port city Copenhagen Tuesday, in an attempt aimed at breaking the 10-year-old blockade on the Gaza Strip. The ships, which carry such names as ‘al-Awda’ (‘Return’), ‘Freedom,’ and ‘Palestine,’ will take two months before it will even reach anywhere close to the ports of Gaza, stopping along the way at several cities in Europe. In the ‘March of Return’ protests that have taken place since March 30th, more than 100 Palestinians have been killed and over 13,000 people have been injured, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health. Read more at i24NEWS.
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Parshas Bamidbar - Every person Matters

Parshas Bamidbar commences with the tziva from Hashem to once again take a census of Bnei Yisroel.  (Bamidbar 1:2) Hashem is very explicit that the census is to be taken “according to their families and according to their father’s household”. (1:2) The Torah then recites the tally for each family (except Shevet Levi, who was excluded from the count) (1:48) reaching a total of 603,550 (1:46).  This stands in stark contrast to the census taken in Parshas P’kudei where the tally was taken of the entire B’nei Yisroel, without any regard to the amount in each particular Shevet.  (Pikudei, 38:26) 


This raises two significant questions.  First, why are we doing another census so close to when the last one was done?  Second, why in the 2nd census are we commanded to break out the amount of people in each Shevet, where this was not commanded the first time?  The major significant event, which took place between the two counts, was the building, completion and dedication of the Mishkan.  It was this transforming event which was the reason for the recount and why it was done by family the second time. 


Prior to the completion of the Mishkan, there existed among the Shevatim a certain competitiveness and even jealousy exhibited under certain circumstances.  Consider the selling of Yoseph, the need to separate Shimon and Levi, the marginalizing of the Bnei Bilha and Zilpa, the loss of the Bechora from Reuven and the assumption of leadership by Yehuda.  Many of these issues were the result of good intentions but nevertheless resulted in divisiveness.  It was no wonder – each Shevet was endowed with unique strengths and weaknesses.  Human nature dictated that each attempted to use their talents to the utmost and bask in their prominence.  This was precisely the reason why the census in P’kudei did not go by family, to emphasize the need for unity – that Klal Yisroel is best served by each Shevet bringing their individual Kochos to the collective.  Only by Shevet Levi leading, B’tzalel from Shevet Yehuda designated as the lead builder with Ahaliyav from Shevet Dan assisting, and everyone contributing gold and silver could the Mishkan come to fruition.


Once this grand accomplishment was in place, every Shevet was able to appreciate the special role and contribution they made to the greater whole. At this point there was no longer a need to emphasize unity, they had already come to appreciate it on their own, through their own efforts.  On the contrary, now that the Mishkan was present, everyone realized their unique place.  No conceit was caused by enumerating the count of the individual Shevatim. 


Klal Yisroel learned in the Midbar that every Shevet and every individual was valuable and contributed to the greatness of the Am.  Simply put, we are not and were never intended to all be the same.  Rather, we all have what to contribute in filling the various roles necessary for a functioning society unified in their Avodas Hashem.  That’s a message quite worthy of reviewing.

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The eight new Vizhnitz-Monsey Rebbes have issued a statement expressing their wish to follow in the ways of their father, the previous Vizhnitzer Rebbe of Monsey, Rav Mordechai (Mottel) Hager zt”l, who recently passed away, requesting that people not take photos of them or publish pictures of them in newspapers and elsewhere. Rav Mottel was adamant about his picture not being taken or published. The Vizhnitzer Rebbe of Monsey, who was 95, led his large chassidus from his home in Kaser Village in Monsey, NY, adjacent to the large Vizhnitzer Bais Medrash. The rebbe was born in 1922, a son of the fourth rebbe of Vizhnitz, Rav Chaim Meir Hager, the Imrei Chaim. The rebbe raised 14 children, 8 sons and 6 daughters. H...
WARSAW, Poland (AP) — A funeral with military honors was held in Poland's capital Monday for a World War II hero and resistance fighter who took part in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. Stanislaw Likiernik was 16 when Nazi Germany invaded Poland, starting the war. He joined Poland's main underground resistance movement, the Home Army, and took part in sabotage actions like blowing up German army transports and executions of Nazi informers. He died on April 17 in France, where he moved after the war, at the age of 94. His daughter Wanda Likiernik-Henny said during the funeral held in the military section of the Powazki cemetery that Poland had "always been his greatest love." Likiernik, who was Jewish, fought and was injured in the failed struggle to liberate Warsaw in 1944. For...
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WASHINGTON (AP) — An upcoming report from the Justice Department's internal watchdog is expected to criticize senior FBI leaders for not moving quickly enough to review a trove of Hillary Clinton emails discovered late in the 2016 campaign, according to people familiar with the findings. The FBI's timing has been a sore point for Clinton supporters, who say then-director James Comey's announcement of the new review less than two weeks before the Nov. 8, 2016, election contributed to her loss. The agency's findings affirming its decision not to pursue criminal charges against Clinton were disclosed two days before the vote — too late, her supporters say, to undo the damage. Some FBI officials knew in September 2016 of the emails on former Rep. Anthony Weine...
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump declined to say Tuesday whether he has confidence in Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, escalating pressure on the Justice Department as his White House negotiated rare access to classified documents for his congressional allies. Asked before a private meeting with the president of South Korea if he has confidence in Rosenstein, who is overseeing the special counsel's Russia investigation, he asked reporters to move on to another question. "Excuse me, I have the president of South Korea here," Trump said. "He doesn't want to hear these questions, if you don't mind." The comments came just before White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced that a meeting to allow House Republicans to review highly classif...
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — In a real-life case of "Failure to Launch," an upstate New York judge Tuesday ordered a 30-year-old man to move out of his parents' house after they went to court to have him ejected. Michael Rotondo told the judge he knows his parents want him out of the split-level ranch they share. But he argued that as a family member, he's entitled to six months more time. State Supreme Court Justice Donald Greenwood rejected that as outrageous, the Post-Standard of Syracuse reported. Rotondo told reporters he'll appeal. Mark and Christina Rotondo brought the court case after several eviction letters offering money and other help were ignored. The parents didn't answer a call seeking comment Tuesday and their letters, filed in court, don&#...
WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Polish leaders are planning to defend the U.S. government's withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal within the European Union, where the decision has been strongly criticized. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said Tuesday that Poland wants to be an "informal go-between" and to explain to EU members and U.S. officials the positions of the other. The Polish government's mediation offer departs somewhat from the united front EU leaders displayed last week in voicing their continued support for the landmark nuclear deal. Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz said Monday during a visit to Washington that Poland stands with the rest of the EU in seeking actions to limit economic damage from the Trump administration's move, "while as for the strate...
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Jerusalem - U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman was caught off guard on Tuesday when he was presented with a poster-sized photo of Jerusalem during a visit to the haredi (ultra-Orthodox) city of Bnei Brak. The seemingly authentic photo of the capital was in fact edited to depict a rebuilt third temple on the Temple Mount, the site where the al-Aqsa mosque currently stands. Friedman received the picture from an activist from the NGO “Achiya,” which works to ensure the rights of children with learning disabilities in the haredi sector and led the tour Friedman was on at the time. The US Embassy subsequently demanded an apology from the NGO, and clarified that “US policy [supports] the status quo on the Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount.” “We apologize to Amb...
Jerusalem - Israel’s Security Cabinet, a forum of senior ministers headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has begun holding its weekly meetings in a secure underground bunker in Jerusalem, Israeli media said on Tuesday. The facility, known as the “National Management Centre”, was first used by the Security Cabinet in 2011 to rehearse a national crisis scenario. It was carved out beneath the government complex in Jerusalem and includes living quarters as well as command facilities. Reports of the move come amid a rise in tensions with Iran. Israel this month accused Iran of firing rockets from Syria into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. Israel struck back with its heaviest air strikes in Syria since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011. Meetings of the Co...
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Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team has asked about flows of money into the Cyprus bank account of a company that specialized in social-media manipulation and whose founder reportedly met with Donald Trump Jr. in August 2016, according to a person familiar with the investigation. The inquiry is drawing attention to PSY Group, an Israeli firm that pitched its services to super-PACs and other entities during the 2016 election. Those services included infiltrating target audiences with elaborately crafted social-media personas and spreading misleading information through websites meant to mimic news portals, according to interviews and PSY Group documents seen by Bloomberg News. The person doesn’t believe any of those pitches was successful, and it’s illegal for foreign ...
PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Multiple law enforcement agencies have surrounded a Panama City, Florida, apartment building where an active shooter is barricaded inside. City spokeswoman Caitlyn Lawrence says it's still an active situation. The suspect has been firing on law enforcement. One civilian received minor injuries in Tuesday's shooting. Walton County Sheriff's officials said on Twitter that the incident is tied to a suspicious death in Santa Rosa Beach where a body was found inside a home. Few details have been released. The Panama City News Herald initially reported that a suspect barricaded himself inside a bank. A bomb squad vehicle was seen in the bank parking lot. But Lawrence said the bank is near the apartment building and it appears the suspect is ...
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