Baltimore, MD – Nov. 2021 - Every Shabbos table offers every Jewish family an incredible opportunity by which they can share their joy for Shabbos, for Yiddishkeit and for HaShem with their children. Unfortunately, our schedules are hectic and many people don’t have the time to prepare themselves to utilize the Shabbos table to its fullest. Therefore, we at ACHIM created TableTalk as a pre-packaged talking points pamphlet which is attractive, fun and has something for everyone. Limited copies are distributed to many shuls on a weekly basis but they are snatched up very quickly. Get yours ASAP or click on the graphic below and print your own.What’s in it and what’s all the excitement about?TableTalk features:•    Weekly halachic dilemma creating l...
Agudath Israel of America is excited to announce the opening of a new Agudah office in Connecticut led by Rabbi Ari Weisenfeld of Waterbury.  As director, Rabbi Weisenfeld will focus on advocating for and serving the needs of the Orthodox Jewish community of Connecticut. Rabbi Weisenfeld has worked for the Agudah the past three years, serving successfully in multiple roles. Rabbi Weisenfeld was recently promoted to the position of associate national director of state relations, a role he will retain in addition to his new responsibilities in Connecticut.  “When Rabbi Weisenfeld told me that he was thinking of moving back to Waterbury, I saw it as an opportunity” said Rabbi Ahron Kaufman, Rosh Hayeshiva of Yeshiva Ateres Shmuel of Waterbury. “I encouraged ...
President Joe Biden plans to require essential nonresident travelers crossing U.S. land borders, such as truck drivers and emergency response officials, to be fully vaccinated beginning on Jan. 22. A senior administration official said the requirement, which the White House previewed in October, brings the rules for essential travelers in line with those that took effect earlier this month for leisure travelers, when the U.S. reopened its borders to fully vaccinated individuals. Essential travelers entering by ferry will also be required to be fully vaccinated by the same date, the official said. The official spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity to preview the announcement. The rules pertain to non-U.S. nationals. American citizens and permanent resident...
Against the backdrop of resurging COVID-19 morbidity and the launch of Israel’s vaccine rollout for children aged 5–11, Israel’s coronavirus cabinet convened on Tuesday evening for the first time in almost two months and ruled to leave existing curbs on public gatherings in place for two more weeks, Yediot Achronot reports. At the opening of the meeting, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett asked his ministers to support the burgeoning vaccine push for children and refrain from making statements that could hamper the country’s inoculation efforts. Weizmann Institute of Science’s Prof. Eran Segal, a scientist advising the government on its pandemic response, turned the panel’s attention to the country’s waning “total immunization” ...
We are taught that Yaakov’s concern about “little vessels” brought about the miracle of Chanuka. In Parshat Vayishlach, prior to meeting Eisav, Yaakov Avinu retraces his steps in order to retrieve “pachim ketanim” (little vessels) that he inadvertently left behind. It was at this point that he encountered the guardian angel of Eisav. How does Yaakov's frugality connect to the historical and national impact of the 8 days of oil? The Gemara tells us (חולין צא) that righteous people value everything that HaShem gives them and are therefore careful with their possessions. It was Yaakov's efforts to retrieve the “pachim ketanim” that enabled his descendants to merit the miracle of the “pach shemen” (vessel of oil...
Chesed Chesed
This is the first pay increase for Israeli soldiers in over five years The Defense and Finance Ministries announced on Tuesday that they will be raising Israeli soldiers' pay by 50 percent beginning next year. “We are making a decision today that will bring justice to those who serve, a major boost that will have significance for the IDF’s force build-up and the continuation [of the military] as a people’s army,” Defense Minister Benny Gantz said in a statement. Israeli soldiers are technically not paid a salary, but receive "subsistence costs" which are much lower than the $1,700 minimum wage.  Front-line units, which get paid the most, currently receive $660 per month. Soldiers in administrative units receive a mere $270 per month.  ...
Within the framework of his visit to Morocco, Minister of Defense, Benny Gantz and Moroccan Minister Delegate to the Head of Government in Charge of National Defense, H.E. Abdellatif Loudiyi signed a groundbreaking defense MOU. The agreement provides a solid framework that formalizes defense relations between the countries and establishes a foundation that will support any future cooperation. It will enable the defense establishments of both countries to enjoy increased cooperation in the fields of intelligence, industrial collaboration, military training and more. The agreement is a significant step in the deepening relations of Israel and the Kingdom of Morocco, which already benefit from increased economic cooperation, bilateral tourism, and warm people-to-people relations. Followi...
Four people were injured in an explosion just outside of Beit Shemesh Wednesday afternoon. The incident occurred in a factory in the Har Tuv industrial zone near Beit Shemesh, when an industrial machine exploded. At least four workers were injured in the explosion, three of them seriously, with a fourth listed in moderate-to-light condition. Emergency first responders from MDA were dispatched to the scene, treating the four people injured in the blast. The injured workers were then evacuated to Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Hospital officials at Hadassah reported that the three workers in serious condition suffered burns over large parts of their bodies. All three have been sedated and placed on respirators. The fourth victim is said to be fully conscious. Police i...
At least four people were killed in a series of airstrikes against targets in Syria, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. According to the London-based SOHR, Israeli warplanes crossed into Lebanese airspace, firing missiles while flying over the Beirut district, striking multiple targets in the Homs region. Overnight, Syria’s official news agency, SANA, reported that the country’s air defense systems were activated following the Israeli attack and intercepted most of the missiles. The Syrian government claimed that two people, both civilians, had been killed in the strikes, listing a third civilian as having been injured. In addition, SANA reported that six Assad regime soldiers were injured. The SOHR, however, reported that four people had b...
Iranian media on Wednesday reported a cyber attack carried out against the Alam al-Huda water monitoring station, which is considered one of the largest in the country. The activity of the water monitoring station was severely damaged, with crews having difficulty restoring the site to full functionality. Managers at the site pointed an accusing finger at Israel, blaming the Jewish State for the cyber attack. Khursan Razawi, director of the Alam al-Huda water monitoring station, told Iranian media that "the water monitoring station underwent a cyber attack on Wednesday and is currently unavailable. The cyber attack was accompanied by passwords displayed by the criminal group that carried out the attack." Iranian media today (Wednesday) quoted various officials as confirming that in the...
The impact of COVID-19 is forcing a record number of school superintendents to either resign, retire or quit altogether, according to a national superintendent's association. Carroll County Public Schools Superintendent Steven Lockard became the fifth school leader to announce he's stepping down in 2022. The decision to step down was personal and it comes at a time when superintendents across the state and the nation are reassessing their roles as educational leaders in the midst of COVID-19. Lockard, a Carroll County native and former high school graduate of a Carroll County High School, took the district's top job back in 2018. A few days ago, he announced he will not seek a new contract when his current one runs out next summer. In a statement, Lockard wrote, "I am ma...
Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott on Tuesday rolled out a 90-day action plan to expand the city's effort to address squeegee workers. The plan doesn't involve clearing the street corners in one fell swoop. Mostly young men, squeegee workers occupy a number of street corners in Baltimore, seeking money to clean car windshields. For the next 90 days, the city is stepping up its ongoing effort to keep the street corners calm and safe and increase outreach to the squeegee workers. Included in the plan are posting traffic control officers at high-traffic intersections, holding bi-weekly "corner events" with city agencies and the establishment of a new Boys and Men of Color Cabinet that will "engage academic, business and community partners to build a comprehensive strategy fo...
Depending on who you ask, Thanksgiving can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. While historically Thanksgiving marks the first harvest feast shared by the colonial pilgrims and Virginia’s Wampanoag tribe, after 400 years, that particular aspect of the holiday has pretty much gotten lost in the shuffle.  As a non-working day for many, Thanksgiving has strayed somewhat from its origins and become synonymous with other things, like family time, the Macy’s parade, pro-football games and the kick off of countless Black Friday sales.  But whether you mark the day with a turkey and all the trimmings or not, there is no getting around the fact that the final Thursday in November is a national holiday built on a foundation of appreciation. Gratitude i...
Baltimore, MD - Nov. 24, 2021 - Death, mourning, scandal— so many shocking, unsavory ingredients to birth of the moshiach. This enigma points to the mitzvah yibum, and the secret of its role both in our parsha and throughout the saga of golus-geulah. We will discover how mitzvah of yibum also inspires hope for personal geulah as we face down our own struggles. Click here to listen  
The Yosef saga, defined by dreams and cruelty; with Yosef’s brothers throwing him into a pit and then selling him to a caravan heading to Egypt, the tests and challenges that followed, was clearly crafted by God’s master plan.  Yosef’s descent into Egypt was but prelude to the galut foretold to Avraham (… “your offspring shall be (ger) aliens in a land not their own...they will oppress them - four hundred years…” (Bereishit 15:13))  V’Yosef hurad Mitzrayama – and Yosef had been brought down to Egypt (39:1) – is not a mere factual; it is the key to all that will unfold as Am Yisrael is to be born into a galut from which God must eventually redeem them.   God has ordained that we will not be born in Londo...
Initial claims for jobless benefits fell 71,000 last week to 199,000 Jobless claims fell sharply to a pandemic low of 199,000 last week, below pre-pandemic levels as employers curbed layoffs amid a tightening labor market. Claims have slipped steadily since ticking up in late September, as the wave of Delta variant infections crested. The decline, along with near-record levels of job openings, signals strengthening demand for labor, said Rubeela Farooqi, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics. “Claims have been moving in the right direction and are sending a positive signal about the labor market. Businesses are wary of letting go of workers amid a severe labor shortage,” she said. Employers added 531,000 jobs in October—the biggest...
MK Nir Barkat (Likud) on Tuesday commented on the military threats against Israel at a conference at Reichman University in Herzliya. "In the next attack, with missiles coming from Lebanon, this will not be the Third Lebanon War, this will be the First Iran War. I think we are not properly assessing the threat coming from Iran that plans to act against us in six arenas: The Lebanese, the Gazan, the long-range missiles, the attempt to establish itself in Syria, Judea and Samaria and there is also a new threat from home - some residents of the State of Israel," Barkat claimed. "The Iranian conventional threat requires us to rethink how we not only harm Lebanon when we are attacked by the Iranian proxy sitting in Lebanon, but how we harm Tehran. So that when the Iranians in Tehran want to o...
Australia on Wednesday listed all of Hezbollah as a "terrorist organization", extending an existing ban on the group’s military wing to the entire organization, according to the AFP news agency. Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews said that the Iran-backed group "continues to threaten terrorist attacks and provide support to terrorist organizations" and poses a "real" and "credible" threat to Australia. Membership of the organization or providing funding for it will now be proscribed in Australia. No reason was given for the timing of the move. Several countries in the world have in recent years blacklisted all of Hezbollah. Germany last year issued a federal order outlawing Hezbollah in the country, and also took enforcement measures under the provisions of t...
Syrian media reported overnight Tuesday that Israel carried out an air strike in the vicinity of the city of Homs. Syria's official news agency, SANA, reported that the country’s air defense systems were activated following the Israeli attack and intercepted most of the missiles. A military source in Syria said four Syrian soldiers were wounded in the attack and that it caused material damage. Syrian state television reported that two civilians were killed and another civilian was injured in the air strike. Just last week, Syrian media reported that Israel attacked an empty building south of the capital, Damascus. According to the report, Israel launched two missiles from the direction of the Golan Heights, and one of them was shot down. No injuries were repo...
Milford Mill, MD — Police are investigating after a woman was shot and killed in Milford Mill Tuesday night. Officers responded to the unit block of Stockmill Road just before 5:15 p.m. for a reported shooting. There, they found a woman suffering from a gunshot wound. She was pronounced dead on the scene. Officials said the suspect fled the scene but they believe the incident may have been targeted. Homicide detectives are investigating.  The woman’s murder marks the 50th homicide in Baltimore County in 2021 — setting a new record high.
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