Archive for the ‘Loss’ Category

By Fareed Zakaria, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017

“He was a sick man, a demented man,” said President Trump, trying to explain the latest mass shooting in the United States. We hear this view expressed routinely, after every new incident. But it is a dodge, a distortion of the facts and a cop-out as to the necessary response.

There is no evidence that the Las Vegas shooter was insane. (I prefer not to use his name and give him publicity, even posthumously.) He did not have a history of mental illness that we know of, nor had he been reported for behavior that would suggest any such condition. He was clearly an evil man, or at least a man who did something truly evil. But evil is not crazy. If we define the attempt to take an innocent human being’s life as madness, then every murderer is mad. If not, we should recognize that it is a meaningless term that adds little to our understanding of the problem.

Actually, the quick assumption of mental illness distorts the discussion. First, it smears people who do have mental disorders. Such people are not inherently highly prone to violence. They are more often victims of violence than perpetrators. And to the extent that some are violent, they are more likely to inflict harm on themselves. Mental-health issues are correlated to suicides far more closely than they are to homicides. [Read more →]

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By AMY CHOZICK

Sara Ehrman, a fixture in liberal politics who advised President Bill Clinton on the Israeli-Arab conflict but was best known as the woman who advised a young Hillary Rodham not to move to Arkansas to marry Mr. Clinton, died Saturday in Washington. She was 98.

A family friend, Jodi Enda, said the cause was endocarditis. [Read more →]

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Shimon Peres was the last of his kind

By Ari Shavit

Unlike other Jews who succeeded him in power, Peres always knew that to be a Jew also meant to be universal and moral; to be on the correct, enlightened side of history.

True, he founded Israel Aircraft Industries (1953), made the decision about the Entebbe Operation (1976), saved Israel from hyperinflation (1985) and got the army out of most of Lebanon (1985). He tried the London agreement (1987) led the Oslo process (1993), and succeeded in turning himself from a controversial politician into a beloved president (2007).

But the real contribution Shimon Peres made to the Jewish state was the amazing work he did in Paris in the mid-1950s that led to the construction of the nuclear reactor in Dimona.

Against powerful counterforces, David Ben-Gurion’s sorcerer’s apprentice succeeded in spreading the strategic security net that assured Israel’s existence. Against all odds, the 34-year-old kibbutznik erected above us that invisible glass dome that allows us to lead almost sane lives in this crazy place.

But Peres was never really a kibbutznik. He was a child of the Jewish Diaspora who arrived from Europe before the disaster to the Ben Shemen Youth Village and tried all his life to become an Israeli. He was the beloved grandson of the grandfather killed in the Holocaust, and all his life he tried to flee the past into the future.

[Read more →]

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Mount Herzl

Jerusalem, Israel

PRESIDENT OBAMA:  Zvia, Yoni, Chemi and generations of the Peres family; President Rivlin; Prime Minister Netanyahu; members of the Israeli government and the Knesset; heads of state and the government and guests from around the world, including President Abbas, whose presence here is a gesture and a reminder of the unfinished business of peace; to the people of Israel:  I could not be more honored to be in Jerusalem to say farewell to my friend Shimon Peres, who showed us that justice and hope are at the heart of the Zionist idea.

[Read more →]

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I am really saddened to lose Shimon Peres, a leader that was among the greatest statesmen of the 21st century, an inspiring voice of reason and wisdom not just for the Jewish people and for the Israeli people, but for humanity. Shimon Peres was one of the last living pioneers who established, built, secured, and strengthened the State of Israel. He was also a visionary, philosopher and diplomat with extraordinary insight into the human spirit. I was scheduled to meet him on my last trip to Israel on the afternoon when he suffered a stroke. My thoughts are with his wonderful family, including my dear friend Mika Almog, his amazing granddaughter, and his son Chemi and daughter Tzvia, all cut from the same cloth of wisdom and warmth. May Shimon’s incredible contributions to the Jewish people, to Israel, and to the world be a source of strength to you and to all of us during these difficult times, and may his words of wisdom guide all of us for years to come. Below you will find a beautiful statement from President Obama:

[Read more →]

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a beautiful ray of hope

Published under Europe, Global, Loss, Religion Aug 22, 2016

In the wake of a heinous murder of an octogenarian priest in France by radical Muslims, Muslims across Europe attended Catholic Mass and spoke out assertively against extremism within.  I hadn’t seen this courageous act of solidarity in the news till my friend Martin Varsavsky pointed it out. What a powerful and strategically effective response to terrorists – achieving precisely the opposite of what extremists would like the reaction and impact to be.

Every time those that want to divide us act, the overwhelming majority should take an active stance to denounce and condemn them. If we all stand up together, the oxygen that turns gross murder into terror would be removed and their goals extinguished. Of course firm force must also be used against all violent extremists and terrorists, but it is not enough. To defeat the ideology of hatred, you need a movement of inclusion and empathy to counteract it.

Full article below:

[Read more →]

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I was fortunate to have the opportunity to get to know Pamela Hartigan over close to two decades, and at every turn I noticed her commitment to excellence and her wonderful warmth and positive energy.  I am sharing Sally Osberg’s words below as a fit tribute to an extraordinary leader in the social entrepreneurship world.

[Read more →]

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