In this week's parsha, the korban todah is discussed. The todah is brought as a thanks to HaShem for one of four reasons discussed by Chaza"l. The todah consists of a sacrifice and 40 loaves of bread. Netzi"v, in Ha'amek Davar points out that even though the todah is a shelamim sacrifice whose prescribed time for eating is a day and a half, the todah may only be eaten that night. This, in addition to the excessive bread requirement will make it impossible for the one bringing the korban to consume everything on his...
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation (all times local): 5:15 p.m. Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report concluding the Russia investigation was delivered by a security officer early Friday afternoon to the office of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. That’s according to Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec. It was then delivered within minutes to Attorney General William Barr. The White House was notified around 4:35-4:40 p.m. that the Justice Department had received the report. The letter was scheduled to be delivered at 5 p.m. to staff members on Capitol Hill. Rosenstein was expected to call Mueller on Friday to thank him for his work in the last two years. __ 5:07 p.m. Attorney General William Barr s...
WASHINGTON — The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, has delivered a report on his inquiry into Russian interference in the 2016 election to Attorney General William P. Barr, according to the Justice Department, bringing to an apparent close an investigation that has consumed the nation and cast a shadow over President Trump for nearly two years. Mr. Barr will decide how much of the report to share with Congress and, by extension, the American public. The House voted unanimouslyin March on a nonbinding resolution to make public the report’s findings, an indication of the deep support within both parties to air whatever evidence prosecutors uncovered. Since Mr. Mueller’s appointment in May 2017, his team has focused on how Russian operatives sought to s...
"When I was wounded, I did not know what life was awaiting me," Dana said. "I went through a long rehabilitation and today, I know that this is it, I won." 23 years after Dana was seriously injured in a terrorist attack on Purim, to the day, she gave birth to her son at the same hospital in which she was hospitalized.Dana was 15 years old when she was heavily injured during a terrorist attack at Dizengoff Center on Ta'anit Ester, 1995. She went to celebrate Purim, but came out in an ambulance headed for Ichilov Hospital. She went through rigorous hospitalization and treatments before gradually being released. Now at age 37, on the same day that she almost lost her life, Dana has instead brought one into the world at the very same hospital to which she was carted away all th...
Jerusalem - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Friday that he will sue two of his main political rivals for libel over remarks relating to a graft scandal relating to a German submarine deal. In a video published on Netanyahu’s Facebook page the veteran Israeli leader said he has instructed his attorneys to take legal action against former army general Benny Gantz and ex-defence minister Moshe Ya’alon, both of the centrist Blue and White party. Israel faces elections on April 9. Netanyahu faces no charges in the submarine matter, but possible indictment in three other corruption cases. He has denied all wrongdoing and accuses his opponents of carrying out a politically motivated “witch-hunt.” Read more at Reuters
[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. Feeling despondent that all of the joy of Purim is over? After Purim, one of my Rebbeim would always quote a Rashi in Gemara Taanis that says we should increase our joy in Adar. Rashi goes on to explain that this in...
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The Israeli Rabbinate is increasingly using DNA testing to help decide the Jewishness of individuals seeking to marry. In almost all cases, this involved immigrants from the former Soviet Union or their offspring. About half a dozen complaints against the practice were filed over the past year with the ITIM organization, which helps immigrants and converts navigate religious bureaucracy. Officially, the Rabbinate only uses DNA results to buttress evidence of a person’s ancestry, but never relies on it exclusively. Yet not everyone is happy with this. Rabbonim of Yerushalayim’s Eretz Chemdah Institute for Advanced Jewish Studies DNA have been pushing for the acceptance of testing of mitochondrial DNA that is inherited exclusively from a person’s mother as conc...
Majdal Shams -Druze Arabs and Israeli settlers on opposite sides of the dispute over U.S. President Donald Trump’s support for Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights agree on one thing - it won’t change matters on the ground. The fertile hillsides of the Israeli-occupied Golan are scattered with villages inhabited by 22,000 Druze, an Arab minority who practice an offshoot of Islam. Many still have relatives on the Syrian side of the fortified boundary. In Majdal Shams, older residents remember being part of Syria before Israel captured most of the heights in the 1967 Middle East war, occupying and later annexing it in 1981. That annexation was not recognized internationally, and although they have lived under Israeli rule for more than half a century and shopfronts bear ...
Poland - Warsaw is likely to refuse Holocaust denier David Irving entry to Poland later this year, the foreign minister said on Friday, citing local legislation that bans denying the genocide. Israel had urged Poland to deny Irving entry after reports that he planned to lead a tour of Nazi concentration camps in the country. The author of several books, Irving has denied that the Nazis murdered six million Jews during World War Two. Irving confirmed to Reuters by email that he had planned to visit Poland later this year, as he has in the past. “Negation of the Holocaust is not allowed by Polish law, therefore he will not be welcome here in Poland if he wants to come and present his opinions,” Jacek Czaputowicz told reporters at a press conference. Irving sued an American hi...
Town Of Ulster, NY - The arrest of a New York man on charges of harassing a Jewish co-worker at a health food store is the latest in a rising number of anti-Semitic episodes reported in New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday. The Democrat joined state police Superintendent Keith Corlett for the announcement of the arrest of William Sullivan, 21, of Saugerties, on a misdemeanor count of aggravated harassment. Police said the conflict occurred March 11 at Mother’s Earth’s Storehouse in Ulster, outside Kingston, 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of Albany. The female employee was in the produce cooler with another co-worker when Sullivan appeared in the doorway, shut off the lights and told her, “You’re in the gas chamber now,” and then insulted her Jewish faith ...
Parsha Hashavua
Parshas Tzav - Todah Rabbah!

In this week's parsha, the korban todah is discussed. The todah is brought as a thanks to HaShem for one of four reasons discussed by Chaza"l. The todah consists of a sacrifice and 40 loaves of bread. Netzi"v, in Ha'amek Davar points out that even though the todah is a shelamim sacrifice whose prescribed time for eating is a day and a half, the todah may only be eaten that night. This, in addition to the excessive bread requirement will make it impossible for the one bringing the korban to consume everything on his own and thus he will be compelled to make a gathering for all his friends wherein he will praise HaShem in public, in order that he not leave over any of the korban after the night. This, suggests Netzi"v, is the reason why the Torah commanded the bringing of the todah in this fashion.


With this concept, Netzi"v (in Herchev Davar on the bottom of Ha'amek Davar) explains the pesukim from Tehillim that we recite in Hallel: "L'cha ezbach zevach toda, uv'shem HaShem ekra", L'cha ezbach refers to the korban (animal) which is referred to as a zevach todahUv'shem HaShem ekra refers to the public thanks to HaShem that is given at the gathering of friends. Nedarai laShem ashalem refers to the korban. In "negda na l'chol amo", the word negda literally comes from the words neged, opposite. However, Netzi"v suggests it can also be construed as coming  from the word haggadah, to tell, referring to the telling over of HaShem's praise that will take place at the gathering. Finally, bechatzros beis HaShem, besochechi Yerushalayim would at first glance seem to be contradictory for bechatzros etc. clearly refers to the boundaries of the Beis HaMikdash whereas besochechi Yerushalayim refers to the entire city. However, according to the Netziv's interpretation it is clear that bechatzros beis HaShem is referring to the korban which is brought within the courtyard of the Beis HaMikdash. The meal in which the bread is eaten, however, will broadcast HaShem's praise throughout all of Yerushalayim. 

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United Nations - The U.N.‘s cultural agency said Friday it is considering whether to remove its recognition of a Belgium carnival as a valuable piece of cultural heritage following accusations of anti-Semitism during a parade. UNESCO, Jewish organizations and European authorities have condemned the supposed anti-Semitic and racist nature of a parade float at the Aalst Carnival that featured puppets of Jews earlier this month. Another group paraded in Ku Klux Klan hoods and robes. “It’s not the first time that these racist and anti-Semitic floats parade in this festival,” the agency’s director-general Audrey Azoulay said, adding that its duty is “to be vigilant and uncompromising regarding such occurrences.” A few days after the March 3 parade, E...
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the United States sanctions on North Korea (all times local): 2:25 p.m. President Donald Trump says he is reversing his administration’s decision to slap new sanctions on North Korea, ordering them withdrawn. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders says Trump “likes Chairman Kim and he doesn’t think these sanctions will be necessary.” Trump says in a tweet that, “It was announced today by the U.S. Treasury that additional large scale Sanctions would be added to those already existing Sanctions on North Korea.” But he says, “I have today ordered the withdrawal of those additional Sanctions!” The White House did not immediately respond to questions about which sanctions Trump was referring to. His a...
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Philadelphia - Some problem police officers in Philadelphia have been assigned to monitor security cameras in a highly sensitive Homeland Security intelligence facility. The location has become a sort of holding area for officers on restricted duty, meaning they are unfit for street duty because of pending criminal charges or accusations of wrongdoing, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer . Among those assigned to the unit is a homicide detective accused of making secret cash payments to an imprisoned informant and a former detective accused of coercing false confessions. Police Commissioner Richard Ross defended the practice in an email to the newspaper, saying that it’s a low-risk and “efficient” use of officers who work under stringent supervision, and that they h...
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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, an avowed progressive, is continuing to support AIPAC amid calls for Democrats to skip this year’s policy conference in Washington, D.C. De Blasio’s team confirmed he will deliver remarks at the annual conference this weekend — another example of daylight between him the left flank of the Democratic Party on the issue of Israel. He plans to speak about “the progressive pro-Israel movement” in front of an estimated 18,000 people at the conference Monday, his spokesperson Jaclyn Rothenberg said. On Sunday, he will be interviewed on stage by AIPAC’s national director for progressive engagement, Marilyn Rosenthal. Earlier this week, the liberal group MoveOn called on Democratic presidential candidates to forgo the confer...
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Chareidim give significantly more of their time and money to charitable causes than other Israeli populations. The Chareidi Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA) found that while 59% of Israeli Jews give tzedokah, among chareidim the figure is 89%, with 67% giving over $140 monthly. Among religious Zionists, the figure was 80%. Volunteering of time for charitable causes is prevalent among 21% of secular and traditional Jews, while for religious Zionist and chareidi Jews, the figures are 33% and 38%, respectively.
Agudath Israel of America warmly welcomes the announcement made by President Donald Trump recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. The Golan Heights, a mountainous range overlooking Israel, were captured after Syria attacked Israel during the Six Day War and have been in Israel’s hands for nearly 52 years. All who are familiar with the geography and military history of the region recognize the strategic importance of the Golan Heights. Syrian control of the mountain range posed a mortal danger to Israel. It furnished Syria and terrorist groups a formidable military advantage, providing them with a base from which to launch deadly attacks against Israel and its citizens in the lowlands below. For the past 52 years, with Israeli control of the area, the threat of Syrian...
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