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Maccabiah stories of Americans, native and immigrant, handicapped & healthy

Athletes from around the globe convene in Israel for Maccabiah Games
Over the past 2 weeks, 9,000 Jewish athletes converged on Israel to compete in the 19th Maccabiah Games. Host country, Israel, won the most medals with 411, including 150 gold medals. 1200 Americans earned 196 medals, the second most.  The next most were earned by Canada, Australia, and South Africa, in that order.

George Thomas of CBN News reports on the Maccabiah Games from American athletes' perspective:

Steve Soboroff, Chairman of the Committee of 18, and Maccabiah Executive Director Eyal Tiberger held a fundraiser in L.A. this spring, courtesy Marv Markowitz  (of  Factor's Deli and The Mark hall) towards funding trips for the athletic Jewish young-people to compete in the Maccabiah Games.

Steve Soboroff discussed, with JooTube, the purpose and results of sending Jewish youth from around the world to compete in the Maccabiah Games in Israel. 

The anti-Semitism in Iran in the 1960's, motivated short-heighted Suleman Binefar to learn how to wrestle.  He became so good at it that he entered the Jewish Maccabiah competition and earned a silver medal. When he escaped from Iran, his medal and all of his memorabilia were misplaced.  Executive Director Eyal Tiberger discusses how the Maccabiah restored his medals to him in Los Angeles.  30-years ago, former Israeli national-team soccer player Eli Marmur launched Maccabi clubs in North America. These clubs will meet in Orange County, California this weekend for the JCC Maccabi Games.

Assistant Coach of the U.S. Girls Junior Soccer team, Nicole Hagouel, gave her views on getting the US Junior Girls Soccer towards Maccabiah Gold.  

She was prescient about defeating Brazil - her girls earned 1st place- above even the host Israeli team.

Joe Siegman, founder of the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame (and author of Jewish Sports Legends) discusses the role of the Maccabiah games in his life, starting as a cricket-player since 1973.

Nearly killed in 2010 accident, a triumphant Dave Blackburn returned to Maccabiah in JTA, 30 July 2013:

Dave Blackburn beamed triumphantly, surrounded by a crowd of American athletes and cheering spectators. It was like old times, the great pitcher basking in applause. But Blackburn wasn’t being ushered off the field with a championship trophy in hand as he was after leading the U.S. softball team to gold medals in four earlier Maccabiah Games. Instead, Blackburn maneuvered his wheelchair down an aisle to the front of a reception hall earlier this month after being named one of 10 athletes to carry the U.S. contingent’s banner onto the field for the opening ceremony of the games.  Read more.

Separate to Blackburn's appearance,
for the first time in the Maccabiah’s history Paralympic competitions were held.  The only two nations to win gold were the Israel with six and the United States with four.  Jewish Paralympic athletes from Hungary, Hong Kong and Australia also earned medals 

Pam Geller calls Anthony Weiner a chutzpadik pig; Andrew McCarthy details the risks of his wife, Huma Abedin, gaining influence

Atlas Shrugs publisher, Pamela Geller called Anthony Weiner a chazzar (Yiddish for "pig") for dragging his baggage into the NYC mayoralty race.

Ms. Geller chides the husband of a Muslim Sisterhood-daughter for "chutzpah" for marching in the Celebrate Israel Parade in New York.  Ms. Geller said that Mr. Weiner deserves to be thrown out of this race by voters.

In "The Huma Unmentionables," in National Review July 24, 2013, Andrew McCarthy explains why Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin is more deserving of scrutiny than empathy.
The marriage to Huma Abedin, a Clinton insider, enables Anthony Weiner to resurrect a debased career and deflect attention from his psychotic antics even as he continues them. The marriage to Anthony Weiner, a prominent Jewish progressive, enables Huma Abedin to deflect attention from her associations with various Islamic supremacists even as, during her tenure as a top State Department official, American policy embraces Islamic supremacists. . . . 
Ms. Abedin worked for many years at a journal that promotes Islamic-supremacist ideology that was founded by a top al-Qaeda financier, Abdullah Omar Naseef. Naseef ran the Rabita Trust, a formally designated foreign terrorist organization under American law. Ms. Abedin and Naseef overlapped at the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs (JMMA) for at least seven years. Throughout that time (1996–2003), Ms. Abdein worked for Hillary Clinton in various capacities.
In the late mid to late Nineties, while she was an intern at the Clinton White House and an assistant editor at JMMA, Ms. Abedin was a member of the executive board of the Muslim Students Association (MSA) at George Washington University, heading its “Social Committee.” The MSA, which has a vast network of chapters at universities across North America, is the foundation of the Muslim Brotherhood’s infrastructure in the United States. Obviously, not every Muslim student who joins the MSA graduates to the Brotherhood — many join for the same social and networking reasons that cause college students in general to join campus organizations. But the MSA does have an indoctrination program, which Sam Tadros describes as a lengthy process of study and service that leads to Brotherhood membership — a process “designed to ensure with absolute certainty that there is conformity to the movement’s ideology and a clear adherence to its leadership’s authority.”
The MSA gave birth to the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the largest Islamist organization in the U.S. Indeed the MSA and ISNA consider themselves the same organization. Because of its support for Hamas (a designated terrorist organization that is the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestinian branch), ISNA was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation case, in which several Hamas operatives were convicted of providing the terrorist organization with lavish financing.   
Ms. Abedin served as one of Secretary of State Clinton’s top staffers and advisers at the State Department. As I’ve previously detailed, during that time, the State Department strongly supported abandoning the federal government’s prior policy against official dealings with the Muslim Brotherhood. State, furthermore, embraced a number of Muslim Brotherhood positions that undermine both American constitutional rights and our alliance with Israel.

European Union pressure on Israel will not help peace talks; Sanctions on Israeli commerce sets-back employment for Palestinians

European Parliament, Strasbourg, France
Misguided E.U. editorial in The Jerusalem Post 19 July 2013
What could the European Union have been thinking when it decided to issue guidelines that, if implemented, would halt all its grants, prizes and “financial instruments” for research and development centers, hi-tech companies, academic institutions and other firms and institutions located beyond the 1949 Armistice line? Though it tried to present the move as nothing more than “putting the rules of the game in writing,” as one EU official put it, the EU must have known the ramifications of putting into practice positions out of touch with the realities on the ground. 
Why do the Europeans believe that Israel should be punished with a boycott for holding on to, and maintaining order in, territories that fell into Israeli hands when it defended itself against an offensive by the combined armies of Jordan, Egypt and Syria? The situation is not very different on the West Bank. 
To whom, conceivably, is Israel expected to “return” the West Bank? The Palestinian leadership is split between Hamas, which aspires to destroy Israel, even within pre-1967 lines, and the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority, which lacks democratic legitimacy (presidential elections were due to take place in 2009), refuses to enter into direct negotiations without preconditions, and continues to see cities inside the Green Line such as Jaffa and Acre as integral parts of a future Palestinian state. 
The Palestinians bear heavy responsibility for the stalemate in negotiations toward a two-state solution. And judging from the PA’s treatment of Palestinian journalists, its violent stifling of dissent and its corruption, it is doubtful a Palestinian state would protect basic human rights. At the very least, the EU should refrain from unilateral moves directed at either of the sides in the conflict, out of recognition of the complexity of the issues.
Samarian resident, Mr. Israel Dansinger, who protects Jewish-safety through Guardians of Judea, Samaria (Yesha) and Gaza, explains to JooTube how western boycotts, divestment, and sanctions (B.D.S.) don't have their desired impact on Judean and Samarian policies - and ultimately backfire - reducing jobs for local Arab and migrant Palestinian workers.

Despite a renewed willingness on the parts of both Israel and the Palestinians to sit down and talk, coupled with enthusiastic support from the Arab League, EU pressure on Israel will not help peace talks.

We appreciate that politicians in many European states are under pressure from a rapidly growing and increasingly assertive and radicalized Muslim population and other anti-Zionist groups to take a stronger stand against Israel. But if Palestinian intransigence is rewarded with more European pressure on Israel, this will encourage yet more intransigence. Why enter into negotiations and make painful concessions as long as international pressure remains focused solely on Israel?
President Shimon Peres, an old hand at peace negotiations, is acutely aware of the potentially counterproductive nature of the EU sanctions. “Don’t put in place irresponsible sanctions which will damage the peace process,” he warned the EU. “The issues are complex and sensitive: Delay your decision. Make peace the priority and give it a chance, your decision could lead to another crisis in our region.”

The 3rd Jihad's route to spread the caliphate to fertile Europe runs through Jerusalem

What's the only thing standing in between 300 million Muslims and an invasion of Europe via Greece?  Americans for a Safe Israel's chairman, Mark Langfan, explained to JooTube.

Mapping out the 'actual conditions' of the Middle East
By Maxine Dovere /JNS.org  (Jewish News Service)

Israeli Minister of Tourism Uzi Landau caused a media stir last month when, at a cabinet meeting, he quoted from former Israeli foreign minister Abba Eban's statement that Israel's 1967 borders are reminiscent of "Auschwitz" because of their indefensibility. But New York attorney Mark Langfan has been saying-rather, portraying-that same point for years.

Langfan for more than two decades has been designing his own Middle East maps-which depict what he calls "actual conditions" in the region, including topography, natural resources, geopolitics, and trade and transportation routes-and schlepping (as he puts it) them to Capitol Hill, where members of Congress from day one told him their constituents believe Israel is an apartheid state.


"The maps provided a tool to enable [legislators] to say to these people, basically, Israel should exist," Langfan says in an interview with JNS.org.

Langfan says his maps work off the assumption that the 1967 "Auschwitz borders" mentioned by Landau "are indefensible and will cause another Holocaust." Furthermore, the maps seek to counter the assumption of Israel's enemies that all of the problems in the Middle East "are because of the Jews."

"According to that theory, if Israel is gone, all the regional problems are solved," Langfan says. "Well, that's not exactly what would be likely to happen."


The motivation behind Langfan's self-funded maps project, he says, is "trying to leverage the maps as a valuable tool to help Israel."

"The issues of the Middle East are complex and multifaceted," Langfan says. "The maps serve as a tool to help explain the realities and put them into perspective-an important means of presenting issues to Congress and American and Israeli Jews."

Langfan presents his maps in 8-10 minute explanatory talks during which the understanding of topography "becomes an important, simple base for additional information," he says.

"These are not interpretive renditions of reality," he says. "These maps show the actual conditions on the ground, presented for the sake of understanding. The intent is to be able to lecture to informed, varied audiences, from high school kids to generals and everyone in between."

One of Langfan's maps details major Palestinian rocket-launching sites, showing the close proximity of those battlements to Israeli population centers. 

"When you realize that both Hezbollah and Hamas can fire rockets-like firing from Brooklyn to Manhattan-it really brings home the reality of the distance, really, the lack of distance [between rocket-launching sites and Israel]," Langfan says.

Another Langfan map, designed around the issue of energy control, "simplifies understanding of the politics of energy," he says.


"The [Middle East] has 370 million Muslims and 11 million Christians in Greece," Langfan explains. "The only barrier between them is Israel. Without Israel, the Muslims will seek to conquer Greece and Cyprus. If Israel were not there, would oil and gas revenues be shared with the Christians of Cyprus? The discovery of natural gas and oil reserves makes the existence of a strong Israel all the more important."

Gaining control over what Langfan calls the "Black Gold Triangle-the oil-rich strip along the east and west coasts of the Persian Gulf-is what Langfan says the "world chess game is all about."

"Each component is a piece of puzzle," he says. "Oil is key. OPEC represents 78 percent of the world's oil-this area has 56 percent of that supply."

Langfan points out that Shi'ite Muslims hold virtually all of the Middle East oil reserves, even in Sunni-governed Saudi Arabia. He believes that Iran's encouragement of the continuation of turmoil in Syria "is not over Syria," but rather over the oil triangle.

"For Iran, it's a question of controlling territory-a smothering campaign," Langfan says. "Amman (the capital of Jordan) and Jerusalem are hardly involved." 


In almost any conversation about the Middle East, the question of Iran's attempt to develop nuclear weapons capacity arises. Langfan says the Iranians "are not fools" and   "have placed their nuclear facilities in as protected a place as possible." A strike on Iran's nuclear facilities "means crossing 4,500 meter-high-mountains," he says, explaining that attacking Iran is a tougher proposition than attacking Iraq, where all of the nuclear facilities are to the east of the mountains.

Regarding Israel, Langfan says, "The strategic value of that little piece of land is extraordinary." He is opposed to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and says the American Israel Political Affairs Committee (AIPAC) "has a problem" on that issue. 

"[AIPAC] has supported the two-state solution, but its position has morphed into one that recognizes Israel as a strategic asset of the United States," Langfan says, calling that position a "contradiction" because the two stances are "mutually exclusive."

"No matter what Israeli general or politician you speak to, they all say 'We will take painful risks for the peace process,'" Langfan says. "They never mention Israel as a strategic asset. If you have a strategic asset, do you expose your strategic asset to pain and risks for peace?"

"Israel is not a dependent little entity that needs to beg for its existence," he adds. "Rather, the Jewish state is a vital component in maintaining the integrity of western civilization."

Ultimately, Langfan dismisses the approach of those who believe "we have to beg for Israel and beg the politicians" to support of the Jewish state.

"My approach is radically different," he says. "If you think there are problems in the Middle East now, think what would happen if there were no Israel."

El Al LAX Memorial: Nonie Darwish: We Egyptians must also free ourselves of our Jew-hatred

Egyptian Islamist, Hesham Mohamed Hadayat shot and/or stabbed 6 people at Los Angeles International airport on Independence Day 2002, the first Independence Day following Al Qaeda's attacks on the World Trade Center, U.S. Pentagon, and attempt to crash the Capitol.  Had passengers and El Al security not wrestled his weapons during the attack, other airline's passengers might have been massacred.  See Democracy Broadcasting's story from last years annual memorial, Assessing our resistance to jihad on the 10th memorial of the Independence Day Islamic terror attack on L.A.X.

El Al attendent, Victoria Hen, and Jacob Aminov were the two Israeli-Americans who died of the shots inflicted Hesham Mohamed Hedayat, that July 4th, 2002 morning.  Aminov, a father of 5 children (and 1 on the way) was only dropping-off a friend flying on El Al, Michael Shabtai (whose post-traumatic stress disorder from the bloodbath contributed to his pre-mature death at age 57).

Avi and Rachel Hen, parents of L.A. terror victim, Vicky Hen, have organized a memorial vigil at L.A.X. each year since the first anniversary of the deaths.

The Islamist who attacked travellers at L.A.X. is part of the movement the Egyptian public have rejected in droves in the streets.  Muslim-raised Egyptian, Nonie Darwish, delivered this impassioned plea at a memorial to the Israeli-American victims.  She apologized for the racism in Arab / Muslim society which terrorizes to conquer non-Muslims- especially Jews, which is promoted in mosques and schools.

Ms. Darwish calls for awareness to - and an end to - Egypt's Nazi-inherited demogoguery of Jew-hatred - which creates a straw-man enemy distraction for failing societies- plus threats to the safety and stability of Jews and the societies in which they live around the world- especially Israel.  She says Muslims must give-up their Holy War against Jews and Christians.  Egyptians' rebellion against the Muslim Brotherhood's Islamism shows the world that Muslims are ready for moderation and reform.

At the 11th memorial of the Islamic terrorist attack at LAX which killed his daughter, Victoria, Avi Hen questions for the press whether security lapses (local and federal) which contributed to the near massacre of the Int'l Terminal by a West Coast Jihadist were intentional or coincidental- as he feels there has been no accountability or justice for Victoria's survivors.

Avi Hen expressed to the press (from 4 TV channels) his frustration with what he has experienced as authorities' stonewalling, lack of accountability on airport police absence enabling the attempted massacrist access to International Terminal.

Klaus Ben-Ami Hackel, El Al's station manager at that time, has been a consistent attendee, along with some of El Al's desk personnel at the time.  The German-raised Mr. Hackel was exposed to Palestinian terrorism in Munich during the '72 Olympics Massacre.  As Lufthansa's station manager at Israel's airport, he strove to avoid terror.  When El Al hired him, he redoubled his efforts to avoid Islamic terror on the Israeli airline for years. But when he transferred to L.A.X. airport, Islamic terrorism finally caught up with him, attempting a massacre on his watch. At the memorial, Mr. Ben-ami Hackel discusses the impact of the 2002 jihadist attack on his life and our world.

Dror Ben-Ami, partner of Klaus Ben-Ami Hackel, attending the EL AL memorial ceremony at L.A.X. expressed dismay at Israeli-Americans' complacency in failing to stand-up for their own and to deter enemies.

Mr. Ben-Ami warns that like their Nazi predecessors, what starts as against only Jews, never ends with Jews, but is a threat of Muslim power against all non-Muslims.

The attack occurred just 10 months after the US declared War on Terror.  L.A. airport, city and federal authorities were reluctant to acknowledge that another Islamist network succeeded in nearly massacring the International Terminal at Los Angeles Int'l Aiport.