By Joe Sterling, CNN
Atlanta (CNN) – The code-red siren blaring in Israel on Tuesday hit close to home for Rabbi Adam Starr.
His wife and daughter were visiting the Jewish state Tuesday, where Israelis have been darting for cover from daily Hamas rocket fire.
Starr breathed easy after he got off the phone with his wife.
"She's in Jerusalem," said Starr, leader of the Young Israel of Toco Hills synagogue in Atlanta. "She called me to tell me she is OK."
But he and others in his congregation and across the country remain anxious over the latest round of fighting between Israel and Hamas.
"We all have many friends and family in Israel," Starr said, referring to his congregants. "We're seeing on Facebook and Twitter our good friends and what they are going through, the complexities in trying to explain this to their young children."
Starr's angst underscores the close bonds between the American Jewish community and Israel, a relationship that predates the founding of the Jewish state in 1948.
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American Jews long have felt an affinity for Israel as a bulwark against anti-Semitism and a refuge for a people escaping persecution and surviving the Holocaust.
Since its 1948 founding, Israel has fought wars with its Arab neighbors and the Palestinians.
Conflict after conflict, U.S. Jewish groups and Jewish citizens have wielded grass-roots political clout to garner American support for Israel.
Latest on the Israel-Gaza conflict
The bonds are underscored by their size. The world's largest Jewish community is in Israel at nearly 6 million people, according to estimates. The U.S. Jewish community is the second most populous at an estimated 5 million plus.
After Israel kicked off its offensive last week to stop Hamas rocket attacks on Israeli communities, Starr and others in the U.S. Jewish community sent an SOS across the United States: Help Israelis. Send donations. Demonstrate for the Jewish state. Let our brothers and sisters in Israel know they're not alone.
Jewish groups staged rallies in cities across the United States, including Chicago, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles. More than $5 million in pledges to help the battered southern Israel communities has poured in, according to the Jewish Federations of North America. Jewish leaders have traveled to Israel to show their support, it said.
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"You've seen a startling consensus," said Omri Ceren, a senior adviser with the Israel Project, a pro-Israel information group, "from the right to the left, from secular/cultural to religious groups."
Ceren said things were different when Israel launched its Cast Lead offensive in Gaza in December 2008 when, he said, not all American Jews were on board.
"There was naïveté in parts of the Jewish community to the effect that maybe President Bush's unpopularity and his refusal to appease" rejectionist Palestinian elements blocked peace.
Arab-Americans watch conflict with mix of worry, relief
After four years of continued hostility, Ceren said, there is more of a clear-eyed view of the perceived motives of Hamas, regarded by the United States and Israel as a terrorist group that is backed by Iran.
The 2008-09 operation failed to loosen Hamas' hold on power in Gaza. The militant rocket attacks from the territory ramped up year by year.
Hamas remained staunchly anti-Israel, and Israel's economic blockade to choke off the delivery of weapons from abroad has generated grass-roots support for the militant group.
"Now that naïveté has become impossible to justify," Ceren said. "The claim that Hamas can be peeled away from Iran doesn't pass the laugh test."
Israel has massed troops at the Gaza border and has threatened a ground offensive. Even though American Jews widely support Israel's right to defend itself from rocket fire coming from Gaza, there is disagreement about the best way to do that. Prior to the recently announced cease-fire between Hamas and Israel, there was much hand-wringing over the wisdom of Israeli ground troops re-entering Gaza.
Some hope a ground war will be avoided, but it's a hard call.
"It seems to be a no-win situation," said Max Rosenthal, active in the small Jewish community of Huntsville, Alabama.
Israel can't live with thousands of rockets coming in every single day, he said. And it faces the challenge of trying to thwart Hamas without killing "huge amounts of people."
"If we go in with a truce, it'll be OK for a few months, then they'll start over again, they'll get more rockets in."
But Rosenthal and other U.S. Jews stress that the destruction of Israel is Hamas' avowed goal. And the future he sees is one of constant conflict.
"There's a feeling this is not going to end well, one way or the other," he said.
"My own feeling is a feeling of despair. I don't see any way of resolving it other than going in and wiping out Gaza and that is certainly not what anyone wants to do."
The executive director of J Street, a Washington-based advocacy group which bills itself as "the political home for pro-Israel, pro-peace Americans," questions whether further military action by Israel "would end the rockets and make Israel more secure" after Cast Lead.
"Today, rockets are more numerous and powerful. Israel is more isolated in its region and more ostracized around the world," said Jeremy Ben-Ami, J Street executive director.
"Only a political resolution to the century-old conflict with the Palestinians resulting in two states living side by side can end the conflict. Without that, in a few short years, we'll be right back here again: anger deeper, rockets more powerful, and political forces yet more extreme."
There's no question that Israel has a right to defend itself, just like any other sovereign nation, said Lindy Miller Crane, a member of Atlanta's Jewish community.
"If rockets were fired to the United States from Cuba, I would hope that the U.S. would react," she said.
Yet, like many Jews who consider themselves politically liberal, she is "ambivalent and conflicted" about how to achieve peace.
If and when a cease-fire comes together, she's worried about the follow-through.
She said that's because it seems as though no progress has been made to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian issue since the 2008 Israeli military operation in Gaza.
It's like the movie "Groundhog Day," Crane said.
She believes that if Israel can start addressing issues of racism and inequality, this will help the Jewish state initiate a strategy that will bring permanent peace with Palestinians.
"It's something that's going to have to happen," said Crane. "When I think about the future of Israel – peace with the Palestinians is one aspect of that."
Israel has negotiated with the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, which runs the government in the West Bank. A main stumbling block to an Israeli-Palestinian peace has been the existence and expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
There is vehement disagreement among U.S. Jews about Fatah and its motivations.
Fatah casts itself as distinct from Hamas, which calls for the destruction of Israel (Fatah does not). But they aren't much different, according to Roz Rothstein, co-founder and CEO of pro-Israel group StandWithUs.
Just read and listen to Fatah's anti-Israel rhetoric, educational system, and media, she said.
They "don't acknowledge there's an Israel next door," she said.
Israel "can get tough on Hamas" and weaken it politically by working with the Palestinian Authority - which is dominated by Hamas' rival, Fatah - toward creating an Israel and Palestinian state, wrote Peter Beinart for the Daily Beast.
"The problem is that in order to make Hamas suffer for opposing the two-state solution, Israel's government would have to truly embrace that solution," he wrote.
But he didn't hold out any hope that Israel would do that.
"Taking a hard line against Hamas requires taking a hard line against the settlements – and at the end of the day, this Israeli government is soft on them both," he wrote.
Near the war but far from the political ferment, Jodi Mansbach, an Atlanta urban planner, sat in a Tel Aviv cafe this week.
Her 16-year-old son is spending a semester at an Israeli high school, and she was visiting him for the Thanksgiving holiday.
After the conflict started, her son had to be transferred from his school in Be'er Sheva, in the southern Israel danger zone, to Tel Aviv - a relatively safer location, despite a bus bomb and air raid sirens.
Mansbach admires the cool way her son's teachers and counselors and Israelis in general cope with fear. They know how to handle life amid air raid sirens, shelters and rocket fire.
"It's so much more scary on the news," she said.
She also draws inspiration from people of other nations, tourists and business people from places like Sweden and Germany, who share her hotel in Tel Aviv.
"The American Jewish community should take a cue from the rest of the world. They are here," she said, referring to Jewish and non-Jewish visitors.
"They are not letting the conflict get in the way. To me, that's incredibly inspiring."
Oh for... Just wait for them to fire on Isreal again then use the most effective solution devised by living man to date. It's not pretty, it's -not- nice. It's not humane. But it -is- permanent.
Wait for them to attack again. Be sure they're seen as the aggressors. Then burn the land. Salt the crops. Demolish the buildings. Kill everybody save a single person, and blind them and leave them alive as an example. It's -not- humane, modern or even fresh, but if Terror is the language you're dealing with, then -nobody- did Terror better than Ghengis Khan.
Otherwise, Negotiate. Make peace. But make -damn- sure they realize that next time, there -won't- be more than a memory left.
Questions for BOTH American Jews and Arabs: (1) Who was Abraham? (2) Who was Sarah? (3) Who was Hagar? (4) Who was Ishmael? (5) Who was Isaac? - Jehovah God's Son Jesus Christ once told humankind, "Seek and you shall find." :)
Mathew 6:33 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God!"
Luke 17:21, "The kingdom of God is inside you!"
John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world!"
1Corinthians 3:9 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building!"
They were a bunch of characters in a book of violent fairy tales. People are killing each other over the writings of some bronze age camel herders. It is absurd on all sides. The creation of Israel by the US and Britian was a colossal mistake that we are all paying for. The Jews should have had a homeland, but not where people were already living. Just because it was mentioned in one of the fairy tale books that they used to live there doesn't mean anything. This whole mess was caused by Western guilt, but none of those countries wanted to give up part of their country for jews to have a homeland in unoccupied and uncontested place.
JC's family and friends had it right 2000 years ago ( Mark 3: 21 "And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.")
Said passage is one of the few judged to be authentic by most contemporary NT scholars. e.g. See Professor Ludemann's conclusion in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 24 and p. 694.
Actually, Jesus was a bit "touched". After all he thought he spoke to Satan, thought he changed water into wine, thought he raised Lazarus from the dead etc. In today's world, said Jesus would be declared legally insane.
Or did P, M, M, L and J simply make him into a first century magic-man via their epistles and gospels of semi-fiction? Many contemporary NT experts after thorough analyses of all the scriptures go with the latter magic-man conclusion with J's gospel being mostly fiction.
Obviously, today's followers of Paul et al's "magic-man" are also a bit on the odd side believing in all the Christian mumbo jumbo about bodies resurrecting, and exorcisms, and miracles, and "magic-man atonement, and infallible, old, European/Utah white men, and 24/7 body/blood sacrifices followed by consumption of said sacrifices. Yummy!!!!
So why do we really care what a first century CE, illiterate, long-dead, preacher/magic man would do or say?
Can one body of people not change that which was declared to be biblically so written? Wherein the biblical can prophesying though forewarned be outwitted should warnings be prophetically heeded? Is it righteously endeavouring to wantonly fulfill a religiously and historically imbedded future thought just because it is so written? Should not a people of uncommon intellect become intellectually mundane just to satisfy biblical prophecies? Wherethen lays the lands ending of aberrance foretold of wanton means? Who are the lands beneficiaries should war bemoan them and all do die out due and thru warring? Hell knows no other ways but to willfully and wantonly fulfill the Word, the Gospel!
Scott715 – Not only did the "fairy tales" as you describe say that the Jews lived there, they did live there for 3000 years. Who do you think built Jerusalem. You can not dig 10 feet and not find atifacts of Jewish life. It wasn't US and Britian who created Israel. The entire League of Nations recognised the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine. They mearly allowed Jews to returned to their homeland.
noiz001 et al,
Duly try and consider;
Can one body of people not change that which was declared to be biblically so written? Wherein the biblical can prophesying though forewarned be outwitted should warnings be prophetically heeded? Is it righteously endeavouring to wantonly fulfill a religiously and historically imbedded future thought just because it is so written? Should not a people of uncommon intellect become intellectually mundane just to satisfy biblical prophecies? Wherethen lays the lands ending of religious aberrance foretold of by wanton Jewish biblical means? Who are the lands beneficiaries should war bemoan them and all do die out due and thru warring? Hell knows no other ways but to willfully and wantonly fulfill the Word, the Jewish Gospel!
Manly made Jewish labelled Gods in name onliness euphemisms have become false-cherishing sublimations not to be subliminally outdone by anothers' naming of God such as Elohim or Jehovah or Yahweh etc etc. Is it not of more-so importance to write or make small-talk toward others to 'menstruatively' condition the morals of youthfulness than to bicker and banter about as elder-aged 'gossipers' seeking shadowy umbrage praises of youth-based others to justify their own selfishness sakes? Who therefore is to be pitied more, the one behind the podium with playing cards or the audience who does sit in waiting to be as leavened bread ever to rise up in unison?
The christian word of truth being the wordage of condensed jewish gospels to which are now way too varyingly many to be had and can no more be held up in tumbling weighty agonies of self-righteousness sakes. To the christians; "The troubles with faithless and unfaithful trinitarians, those who belly-up to one god times three is, they read but only into it and get very little out of what they make 'gospel' in treacherously unsound morbid amplifications of unblessed pleasings by the manly adaptive and grudgingly adopted childishness views of Godly egregious moralisms."
The christian rudimentary and timid preaching practices in devilish tongues beatifies only the lecherously dumb-hearted relics, those aged heartburns of their jew-based christiandumbness's idiosyncratic marmoset-like redundancies. Their godly embittered and fettered moralisms are but self-centered and selfishly censored upon age old redundant principles that are remorsefully archaic in round-about sciatic cultured replicants behooving those old fuddy duddies who fumble ever for their next glass worth of wine! Drunk and in temperamental stupors are the emotionally fallen within biblically jewish-rooted christiandumbs folds becoming sciatic pragmatisms unworthy of even one toasting for, but rather for the many to be rightly toasting against!"
Few of the "modern generation" of BOTH sides know their "blood roots" - who should teach them?
Fuk them both, I can't stand either of them, let em kill each other it's there business not ours, we got our own problems, jobs, being invaded by illegals etc.
Name*jim et al,
2Kings 20:1 "In those days was Hezekiah sick unto death. And the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz came to him, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Set thine house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live."
All nations should heed these words and get their own countries in order lest they dry up just like a fig or a prune does. A nation should not make vain attempts for cleaning other nations' houses.
Prayer changes things .
There is no god. You are only speaking to yourself when you pray.
There are no atheists you are only lying to yourself when you deny.
In my humble opinion, Israel has to chose between two solutions:
1) Allow the creation of a Palestinian State beyond the pre-1967 borders by accepting the joint Arab Peace Plan.
2) A One State Solution with complete equality for Jews, Christians, Muslims and any others living in the combined Israel-Palestine, instead of the current Apartheid setup.
The sooner the choice is made, the earlier the bloodshed borne out of desperation stops.
The palestinians have no business being in the land at all. They are the dregs of the Arab countries unwelcomed anywhere and cast out of their original homes in other countries. The only real solution is for Israel to be one nation without any enemy intruders.
truth be told et al,
Funny thing historical truths are. I tought it was the jewish communities of the United Kingdom that were considered to be the "dregs" of the national commonwealth within the U.K.? The Germans weren't the only country that despised and hated the jewish people. Read for yourself about the Rothschild Dynasty. They were the Scrooges of the banking industry starting in the 18th century. Read about the Dynasty at the following site:
Postee for all to reedee,
The Balfour Declaration (dated 2 November 1917) was a letter from the United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour to Baron Rothschild (Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild), a leader of the British Jewish community, for transmission to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland.The letter follows;
"His Majesty's government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country."
So then, "International" finaglers, those who did write in jewish slithering manueverings to steal Arab Lands by hook-N-crook doctrines and give such lands all for the jewish land theives brought on by slimy 2nd generation jewish banker rothchild and the jewish rothchild syndicate? Go figure!
For more info Please visit;
The Jews crucified our lord and saviour Jesus Christ.
Nothing happens without God's permission. What happened to Christ, God used to bring about his salvation plan. Satan did not know that Christ woud rise from the dead. He thought that he was getting rid of Jesus.
You crucified our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, as did I and everyone who has or will inherit Salvation.
The 'sin curse' is nothing but a jewish religiously ascribed lie meant to finagle or fool the weak and meek minded people!
There will never be peace as long as the 12 Hebrew Tribes of Isrealite have not come fully Back Into all the whole land of Yisreal from Eurphates river too the Brooks of Egypt.always remember Abraham covenant. Genesis 12:3 Genesis 14:13
Hammer, you need to work on your writing skills. Nobody takes sixth-grade writing seriously.
1) Any "Jewish reaction" article on CNN will be from guilt-ridden liberal Jews who wish to hand over Israel on a platter
2) Any "Jewish reaction" article on CNN that includes reaction from J-street should not be considered as a Jewish reaction; refer to item #1.
Why did Moshe write Deuteronomy chapter 28:15~68 about the Hebrews
Good call. I'm just waiting for that ONE idiot hamas member to screw-up and launch that single cease-fire breaking missile into Israel. After that happens, and with Netanyahu at the helm, WATCH OUT. I think he'll POUNCE–he's a Democratically elected "military man" who fought in the '60's, and I think he's had QUITE enough of Hamas. He's probably more content on ENDING Hamas to create some sort of "separate peace" on Israel's OWN terms. And I think most Israelis feel the same way, which is WHY they elected Netanyahu back into office again.
And yet 69 per cent of Jews supported Obama..how totally bizarre, not to mention the liberal in the article seemingly not having a clue...pathetic.
I'm one of those 31% who think Obama is - at the very least - "ambivalent" about Israel. These other 69% have no concept of Jewish history, deny the significance of the Holocaust, and seem to believe that if they march around in parades and shout "never again" (while also shouting "two-state solution") it would never happen again. I used to think their idealism was some form of naivete; on the contrary, it's pure absence of logic and lack of insight into the darker side of humanity. This country may have to sadly learn the hard way for the grievous mistake made on November 6, 2012.
There is only ONE MESSAGE on earth now
that can establish TRUE and EVERLASTING PEACE between Israel and Palestine,
and all over the World!
UNIVERSAL MAGNIFICENT MIRACLES
There will not be peace as long as the 12 Hebrew Isrealite Tribes are not fully Restored this will go on because Genesis 12:3 has not change. Its a forever covenant
As long as Hamas and other militant, extremists refuse to recognize the legitimacy of the Jewish State of Israel, I feel the words of Jeremy Ben-Ami, JStreet executive director, are nothing but ideological dreams of an unrealistic, and noisy individual.
I'd rather have a Muslim friend than a Jew. And I am Caucasian. Nazi's forced Jews out of their homes, just as Israel has done to Palestinians. Hypocrisy?
Long live Ireland! Pog mo hoin Jews!
It's "Nazis," not "Nazi's". Mistakes like that make you look stupid. Are you?
You're right: reality is reality.
Here's another reality: you're an ignoramus.
I'll tell you how I view the conflict. I think it's unfortunate for the innocent people on both sides, particularly the Palestinian side. It's unfortunate for the people who don't want to be involved in any conflict and who just had the misfortune of being born where they were. People who just want to live their lives in peace, who don't want to fear for their lives, and who don't want to hate or be hated by anyone.
I also think it's unfortunate that this conflict runs too deep to be resolved in my lifetime. There are too many Palestinians who hate Israelis (though many, not without good reason) and who would like to see all Israelis exterminated. There are too many Israelis who could just never bring themselves to trust Palestinians (though many, not without good reason), and would like them all just to go away and absorb into other Arab countries. I think if the Palestinians were to stop all hostilities against the Israelis and live their lives, it would be many decades before Israel stopped treating them like prisoners in the world's biggest prison. I think it would ideally it would have been in the best interest of the Palestinians to embrace Israel long ago and become full fledged Israeli citizens so they could share in Israel's prosperity but unfortunately that is an opportunity long gone. What a crappy situation for everyone involved.
That's really cute how you feel so sad for the Palestinians. Did you see how they paraded the bodies of dead "spies" yesterday? Did you see how they use children as human shields? Did you see how they faked injuries on the Internet this past week?
Listen up and get smart: there was no such place as Palestine before 1948. Furthermore, these Gaza-pigs elected a terrorist organization to run their government. As far as I'm concerned, they got off light this week; if there is one more detonation in Israel, I think they should go in and knock out a whole square mile of civilizaiton. The people who live in Gaza don't get western values, don't have a clue about freedom, hate their neighbor Israel and certainly don't like Americans. People in the streets of Gaza came out and CHEERED on 9/11, in case you don't remember, which I believe is the case.
DocReality wrote, "Listen up and get smart: there was no such place as Palestine before 1948."
You be de imbecile Dr!
get wise and read the hustory regarding the Rothschild Dynasty at;
not to be outdone at;
Dare I add;
Once you have had your fill of literature we might then talk! Until then go read up on the Rothschilds, you illiterate buffoon!
I am a liberal American Jew married to a Christian for 25 yrs with children, whom I hope will transcend our fairy tales. These American anti-semites have Einstein to thank for their freedom and Jonas Salk for their health. America comes first for me. America is about our ideals, values, freedoms for all of our people and f yes Muslims too. We, Americans, need to show the way, that we Americans from ALL over the world care for all people. In times of fear history has shown that people turn against one another, but we must not do that. I recognize that my children, their children will probably vary races and religions from me, but they are still mine. There is just one tribe.. the human tribe. God people...grow up.
And Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernake to thank for destroying the future purchasing power of the U,S. Dollar
We can thank Paul Wolfowitz for getting us into Iraq And Michael Chertoff for the naked body, radiation machines at airports
And we have Massoud to thank for dumb postings and more displays of antisemitism while denying any accountability for the evil that Islam generates collectively throughout the globe. Thanks, Massoud.
@ Doc false reality, The Anti-semite card is as overplayed as is the racist card, it no longer holds value. According to your false reality doc anyone who criticizes Obama's policies is probably a racist.
Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke have destroyed the U.S. Dollars value with their easy credit and artificially low interest rates.Monetizing the debt these stooges call it, I call it screwing every American citizen out of the dollars future.
Massoud.....you are off topic.
What would king Solomon do since he was a Hebrew he knew a lot about money and wealth
it's ironic that people with no credit are considered a credit risk for being and living debt free. iit's a shame. what is this country coming to. how does Isaiah 5:20 say it: "...Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; ..."
28For he is not a Jew who is one on the outside, nor is circucision that which is on the outside upon the flesh.29But he is a Jew who is one on the inside, and [his] circucision is that of the heart by spirit, and not by a written code. The praise of that one comes, not from men, but from God. Rom 2:28,29
For not all who [spring] from Israel are really “Israel.” Rom 9:6
yes, but what about us non-jews who have to support israel financially (i.e. 300 million dollars for that iron dome, etc.)? reminds me of ww2. also, how many jews join military service in u.s? yet, they want america to fight for israel to the detriment of the u.s. in the arab world. we end up fighting their fights.
This could be the most ignorant statement ever posted on here. Congratulations. My dad was in Vietnam and plenty of Jews have served in our military. To support Israel is to support the western values of freedom and democracy. Take a visit to Libya, Egypt, Yemen, or Syria and see what you have: systems which repeatedly fail and collapse into dust. Islam is a hate group and their culture is cruelty. What kind of human being could give a child away to become a suicide bomber? And please, no bleeding-heart liberal responses; I don't like to get nauseous before bedtime...
The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.