THE FOLLOWING IS VIA YWN The Muslim suspect who beat an elderly Hasidic Jewish man in Boro Park on Sunday has now been charged with a hate crime. Sources confirmed to YWN that the Brooklyn Distric Attorney upgraded the charges on Friday afternoon. Farrukh Afzal, 37, of Staten Island, has 8 prior arrests. As reported on YWN, Afzal reportedly shouted “Allah, Allah”, said he wanted to “kill all Jews” and made references to ‘Israel’while viciously beating 62-year-old R’ Lipa Schwartz on Sunday. The attack appeared to be unprovoked (not ...
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Russian woman was accused Friday of a sweeping effort to sway American public opinion through social media in the first federal case alleging foreign interference in the 2018 midterm election. The Justice Department unsealed the criminal complaint on the same day that U.S. intelligence agencies, in a rare public statement , asserted that Russia, China, Iran and other countries were engaged in continuous efforts to influence American policy and voters in the upcoming elections and beyond. The U.S. is concerned about the foreign campaigns “to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies,” the national security officials said. “These activities also may seek to influence...
Washington - Another two to three interest rate increases from the Federal Reserve will likely put U.S. borrowing costs in “neutral” territory where it is neither stimulating nor restricting economic growth, Dallas Federal Reserve President Robert Kaplan said on Friday. At an event sponsored by the Manhattan Institute, Kaplan said he has not decided yet whether the Fed would need to raise rates above this neutral level. Read more at Reuters
New York - New reforms aimed at improving police interactions in New York City include requirements that officers hand out their business cards to people they stop and explain why law enforcement activity is taking place. The measures, which took effect Friday, also require that officers be trained to obtain voluntary, knowing and intelligent consent before conducting searches without a warrant. The laws, known together as the Right to Know to Act, were approved in December. Backers say they grew out of concern that controversy over stop-and-frisk practices had eroded trust in the police department. The NYPD says it has printed about 10 million business cards, developed new training, updated its online patrol guide and created a handy, one-page reference guide for officers to comply wi...
Baltimore, MD - Oct. 19, 2018 - On a gorgeous Friday afternoon in the heart of Baltimore, 80 young men came out to play for the 15th season of the Torah Youth Flag Football league.  This year there are two separate division for 9th grade  and 10th through 12th. We would like to thank our sponsors - Camp Yedidim, Purgistics, Kelemer Windows, DC Dental, Denture Doctor, Apex, Tov Pizza, Yaakov Schmell, ARI Concrete, and Healthsource Distributors.
Iris Hajbi, mother of Ziv who was murdered in the Barkan factory terror attack together with Kim Levengrond-Yehezkel, has called on Israeli security forces to destroy the home of the terrorist responsible for her son’s death in its entirety. “They have to demolish the house and throw them out of here; take the family that raised these children who hate and kill and move them over the fence. They don’t belong here and their house should be demolished,” Hajbi said. Hajbi also said she hoped the terrorist is captured dead rather than alive. “I asked everyone I could not to bring him back alive – only death for the terrorist. I don’t want to face him in court, I don’t want him to receive money and sit and study and get a master’s degree ...
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Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi-born writer who was allegedly murdered on the orders of the Saudi government in Istanbul earlier this month, has been the subject of much concern in the mainstream media since his disappearance. However, Khashoggi was far from a liberal journalist, writes Jordan Schachtel of Conservative Review. According to Shachtel, Khashoggi, who wrote for the Washington Post’s, was actually an Islamist extremist who displayed a “serious bloodlust when it came to violence against the state of Israel” and was connected to terrorist organizations. In 2014, Khashoggi wrote an op-ed inn which he expressed hope that Muslim nations would join with Hamas to wipe out Israel. Additionally, Khashoggi was an open supporter of arch-terrorist Osama Bin Laden. Read more...
TECUN UMAN, Guatemala (AP) — Central Americans traveling in a mass caravan broke through a Guatemalan border fence and streamed by the thousands toward Mexican territory Friday, defying Mexican authorities’ entreaties for an orderly migration and U.S. President Donald Trump’s threats of retaliation. Arriving on the Mexican side of a border bridge, they were met by a phalanx of police with riot shields. About 50 managed to push their way through before officers unleashed pepper spray and the rest retreated. The gates were closed again, and a federal police officer used a loudspeaker to address the masses, saying, “We need you to stop the aggression.” Waving Honduran flags and carrying umbrellas to protect against the sun, the migrants arrived earlier at the ...
Hamas has decided to scale back the violent weekly protests along Gaza’s border with Israel in an effort to bring down the number of casualties among the protesters, the London-based Arabic-language newspaper Al-Hayat reported on Thursday. A Palestinian source in the Gaza Strip told Al-Hayat that the organization had made its decision after being pressured by a delegation of senior Egyptian intelligence officials that arrived in Gaza on Tuesday to mediate a cease-fire agreement between Israel and the Gaza rulers. The decision was made before two long-range rockets were fired from Gaza into Israel on Wednesday, one of which demolished a family home in Beersheba. Hamas has denied any responsibility for the rocket attacks. The newspaper reported that the Egyptian officials had persua...
Parsha Hashavua
Parshas Lech Lecha - For Hashem and For Ourselves

In the first Pasuk of this week’s Parsha, we have an unusual pair of Rashi’s.  First, on the words “Lech Licha”, Rashi immediately tells us that this means “for your good and for your benefit”.  (Rashi, Lech Licha 12:1)  Rashi however is not content to leave his comment on Lech Licha there, instead he goes on and tells us almost exactly what the words are from the next pasuk.  “I will make you into a great nation, I will grant you children and your reputation will be known throughout the world.” (Rashi, Lech Licha 12:1)  Why did Rashi feel compelled to tell us what are basically the words from the 2nd pasuk at this time?


When we read the 2nd pasuk our question becomes even more perplexing.  The pasuk says “I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you and I will make your name great.” (12:2).  Since Rashi already told us all this in his comment to the first pasuk, we would think Rashi would have very little to add here.  Instead, Rashi comments that “relocating, by its very nature, diminishes these three things – it breaks up families, reduces wealth and lessens ones reputation.”  Why does Rashi add this in his comment to this Pasuk but made no mention about it when he first discussed these three brachos in the first pasuk?


As is typical when studying Rashi, the answer to our questions comes from a careful scrutiny of Rashi’s words.  In the first pasuk , Rashi is commenting specifically on the words “Lech Licha”  Rashi introduces his comment with “L’hanascha V’tovosecha – for your good and for your benefit”.  It is Rashi’s desire to specifically explain the word “Licha” in the first Pasuk.  It is one thing for Hashem to tell Avraham to “go”, a tziva which he certainly would have followed, but he also told him to go “Licha” for you.  It is this extra word that compels Rashi to tell us what was the “good” that Hashem was promising him with the word “Licha”.  Indeed, the instruction from Rashi is that by fulfilling Hashem’s command Avraham was assured that these things which are jeopardized by relocation would in fact be turned “Lehanoscha V’tovosecha”. 


When Hashem then spells out the brachos that Avraham will receive in the 2nd Pasuk, Rashi points out how these are the precise things that one usually loses when he moves around a lot and is unable to put down roots.  It would have been easy for Avraham to perceive Hashem’s tziva and “Licha” as referring only to spiritual good.  After all, that was the purpose of his leaving his home.   When Hashem told him of these brachos, Rashi rightfully points out that Avraham had every reason to expect to lose these things while following Hashem’s direction.  How pleasantly surprised he was to learn that what he would be gaining would include some of these material things as well.


Subtly implied in Rashi’s words are a very deep lesson.  “Licha”, for you, is inherently “Lehanascha L’tovosecha”.  It is intrinsically linked with Lech, to go.  While it’s true that we should do things for spiritual reasons (Lech), one should understand that by doing so, Hashem will not allow us to suffer losses materially either.  This entire Perek recites over and over the connection between our Bris with Hashem and his promise to provide an inheritance (Eretz Yisroel), protect us from our enemies, multiply our descendants and even provide sustenance.  Obviously, it is our desire to work on improving ourselves spiritually.  These Rashi’s make clear though that in so doing we are also earning Hashem’s promise of L’hanoscha L’tovosecha”.  Let us all do our part and follow Hashem’s Tzivos. We can certainly be assured that he will keep his promises to us.

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Miami, FL - An Argentine airline says fifteen passengers aboard a flight from Miami to Buenos Aires suffered minor injuries after their plane hit turbulence. Eight of the passengers were taken in for a second check-up. Aerolineas Argentina said in a statement Thursday that the passengers were aboard Flight 1303 when their plane hit turbulence of “severe intensity.” “The incident occurred in the flight phase called ‘cruise’ and was immediately reported by the captain in charge of the aircraft,” it said. “Once the turbulence zone was crossed, the crew in charge of the flight dedicated themselves to assisting the injured passengers and attending to the 192 passengers.” The airline said medical assistance teams were on hand upon the flight&rs...
Washington - U.S. home sales fell for the sixth straight month in September, a sign that housing has increasingly become a weak spot for the economy. The National Association of Realtors said Friday that sales declined 3.4 percent last month, the biggest drop in 2 ½ years, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.15 million. That’s the lowest sales pace since November 2015. Hurricane Florence dragged sales in North Carolina, but even excluding the storm’s effects, sales would have fallen more than 2 percent, the NAR said. After reaching the highest level in a decade last year, sales of existing homes have declined steadily in 2018 amid rapid price increases, higher mortgage rates and a tight supply of available houses. Housing will likely weaken further in the coming...
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Jerusalem - Christian leaders in Jerusalem are urging Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to stop a bill that the churches say would allow the state to appropriate land sold to buyers. Orthodox, Catholic and Armenian church leaders wrote a letter to Netanyahu on Friday saying the vote “constitutes a flagrant disregard” of his earlier assurances to block the legislation. The government’s Ministerial Legislation Committee will reportedly vote on the bill on Sunday. The bill’s sponsor, lawmaker Rachel Azaria, has said the questionable sales of these properties have plunged thousands of Jerusalem residents into uncertainty over their living conditions.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Thousands of Palestinians massed Friday along Israel's frontier, with dozens approaching and breaching the perimeter fence that separates Gaza from Israel, even as Egypt stepped up efforts reach a lasting cease-fire between the territory's Hamas rulers and Israel. The militant Hamas group praised the turnout as a challenge to Israel, which was mulling a large-scale military response after a rocket was fired from Gaza on Wednesday and destroyed a house in southern Israel. Gaza's Health Ministry reported 77 Palestinians were wounded by Israeli fire and six of them were in serious condition. "The Israeli enemy's threats have effectively motivated the crowds to participate powerfully in the protest," said Fawzi Barhoum, a spokesman for ...
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Warsaw, Poland - A museum dedicated to the Jews who suffered in the Warsaw Ghetto during Nazi Germany’s occupation of Poland came closer to reality Friday when a key to the buildings it is expected to inhabit changed hands. Plans call for the Warsaw Ghetto Museum to be housed in a former children’s hospital that was within the ghetto’s walls. It is scheduled to open in 2023 on the 80th anniversary of the uprising by Jews in the ghetto. Museum director Albert Stankowski received a key to the property from a government official and signed a long-term lease during a ceremony at the future museum site. Jewish philanthropists established the hospital in the late 19th century and treated both Jewish and Christian children, among them tuberculosis patients. During World War ...
Budapest - A planned new Holocaust museum in Budapest has divided Hungary’s Jewish community and triggered international concerns that it will downplay the wartime role of Hungarians in the persecution and deportation of Jews. Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s right-wing government plans to open the museum next year to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the deportati7on of Hungarian Jews to death camps in German-occupied Poland. More than half a million Hungarian Jews were among six million Jews killed in Europe during the Holocaust. In a Sept. 7 decree the government granted ownership of the new museum, called the House of Fates, to the Unified Hungarian Jewish Congregation (EMIH), one of the three registered Jewish groups in Hungary. The permanent exhibition, to be set up by ...
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New Delhi -  A speeding train ran over a crowd watching fireworks during a religious festival in northern India on Friday, killing at least 50 people, a Congress party leader said. The victims crowded the rail track on the outskirts of Amritsar, a city in Punjab state. They didn’t see the train coming, which failed to stop after the accident, said the politician, Pratap Singh Bajwa. Amrinder Singh, the state’s top elected official, told reporters that he had reports of 50 to 60 people dead. Thirty bodies had been removed from the site by Friday evening as relief work was being hampered by nightfall. An eyewitness said the train didn’t even whistle as it sped past the site, where hundreds were busy watching the burning of an effigy of demon Ravana during the Hindu ...
Baltimore, Md - Oct. 19, 2018 -  This Shabbos Baltimore's Mercaz Torah & Tefillah has the kovod of welcoming Harav Moshe Meiselman Shlit”a, Rosh Hayeshiva of Yeshiva Toras Moshe, who will join us for the entire Shabbos! The Rosh HaYeshiva will deliver various drashos throughout Shabbos/Sunday including: Alumni Oneg Shabbos 8:45 PM Friday Night:  Join Baltimore ToMo Alumni Friday night for an Oneg Shabbos with our esteemed Rosh Hayeshiva at the home of Mr. & Mrs. Dovid Charnowitz. 6209 Green Meadow Way, Baltimore, MD, 21209. Alumni are encouraged to share this information to ensure a nice "oilam" for the Rosh HaYeshiva. In addition: please submit questions for Q & A: to raficohn@gmail.com.   &...
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Baltimore, MD – Oct. 19, 2018 - It is with sadness that BaltimoreJewishLife.com informs the community of the petirah of Mr.  Irv Pichney, z’l, father of Dr. Lisa Pachino. The levaya will take place on Sunday, October 21 at 12:30pm at the Judean Gardens Cemetery, 16225 Batchellors Forest Rd (Corner of Georgia and Batchellors Forest) Olney, MD, 20832   Shiva will be observed through Friday morning at 7814 Ridge Terrace, Baltimore, Md , 21208   Bila HaMaves LaNetzach...
US Ambassador David Friedman and Israel Cultural Minister Ayoob Kara, attended an event at the American Center in Jerusalem, Israel, to reveal new Hannukah stamps. Timed on Tuesday, October 16, the Jerusalem ceremony preceded a parallel ceremony held in the Touro Synagogue in Rhode Island which was live-streamed on Facebook to the Jerusalem location.   The new Channukah stamps are based on design by Maryland artist Tamar Fishman. The American stamp is a "Forever" Stamp, while the Israeli one has a current amount for overseas postage. The stamps are published in time for residents in each country to use for this Hannukah mailings.  Along with postal and philatelic representatives present were Barbara Goldstein of Hadassah Hospital and Lenny Ben David, who pr...
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