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Showing posts from January, 2005

Lisa's Journey to Israel Part 5

I posted links to the first four installments here . You can find the link to the fifth right here . A brief comment. I think that I would find these interesting no matter what. How ever given my near miss with moving to Jerusalem in '95 it is even more compelling to me. I try not to wonder about what life would have been like had I made the move. I cannot imagine not having my children, but in addition to being a father I am just a man. And the man wonders about the experiences he missed out on. I made my decision and I am comfortable with it, but sometimes there is an ache inside. Anyway, read the story, it is good reading and quite interesting because it is real and easy to envision yourself in the situations described therein.

I Am Numb, How Can I Not Be

This is going to be another choppy post filled with flotsam and jetsam, just bits and pieces of me and my thoughts as encounter them. I like being informed, that is, I am a newshound. I like the news. I want to stay abreast of the events of the day. I want to know what is happening where, it is important to me. But there is a price to pay. There is an overwhelming amount of information to absorb. Hundreds of stories about humanity and inhumanity. There are stories of children who never live to see 10, lives snuffed out by monsters in the dark, and some of those monsters are their parents. Lives shattered and crushed by terrorists, by the ocean, earthquakes and so many other senseless acts. There are stories of rape, murder and molestation. Victims whose cries for helps were ignored or laughed at. Unimaginable cruelty as wives watch their husbands murdered and children see their mothers raped. The really sad thing here, the tragic thing is that none of what I have w

Child Killers Walk Free in Washington

Stories like this make me physically ill. I once came across a man who was being overly aggressive with his son in a supermarket. He slapped him hard enough that the boy fell on the ground and was preparing to hit him again when I intervened. I don't like the idea of stepping in. You don't always know the full story of what is happening at home, but I was infuriated when I saw this. It is one thing to swat a child on the rear, but to slap them across the face with enough force to knock them down is just wrong. Before the man could hit the boy again I got his attention and suggested that he take a deep breath. He was angry and told me to "fuck off." I offered to remove his arm from his shoulder and then hold him down while his son whacked him with it and he thought better of it. From time to time I have wondered about that boy, wondered if it was a one time aberration in behavior or something more. All I know is that this mistreatment of childre

The '60s are over

Slifkin Ban

Inquiring minds want to know why I haven't blogged about Slifkin. I could recite the tale of my time at the crater in Israel in which I made waves with the Charedi children about how old the Earth really is. The real answer is that plenty of others have remarked about this. I think there is room for science and faith and there are options for explaining things that incorporate both. More to the point, there are too many scientific proofs for me to accept stories of the world being less than 6k years old. I don't believe in ignorance and this ban pushes it as being an acceptable practice. It is part and parcel of my argument that we need to be a part of the world, not separate. Once we were forced to live in ghettos, we shouldn't do so again, self-imposed or otherwise.

What are Your Favorite Blogs?

From the mailbag: Dear Jack, I really enjoy reading your blog. I find your thoughts to be anything but random and enjoy your comments on life. You seem to have a good sense of humor and I am curious to learn if you have any favorite blogs and how do you get so many people to link to you. Thanks, Steve Dear Steve, I do have a number of favorites. Some I find to be very funny, some I find to be consistently intriguing because they stimulate me intellectually or have similar interests. I don't have enough time to really go through the blogosphere the way I want to, so there are probably some other blogs that I would really enjoy. Here are some of my current favorites Rishon Rishon , Treppenwitz , The Shmata Queen , Bloghead and The Monkey Cage . As for generating more links to your blog there are a couple basic ways to make that happen. The first is to continually produce excellent content. It can be niche, it can be general, it can be news, special interest

U.S. students say press freedoms go too far

I found this article to be troubling, especially this: "The survey of 112,003 students finds that 36% believe newspapers should get "government approval" of stories before publishing; " Aren't they learning anything. Have they heard of Peter Zenger, do they know the history of prior restraint and the problems it can cause.

Arrested Development, Clint Eastwood & Humphrey Bogart

Just another dose of assorted random thoughts about this and that. Arrested Development has become one of my favorite television shows. It is quirky and well written and the characters are fun. Most importantly it makes me laugh and one of Jack's most important rules is to laugh long and laugh hard. Laughter is a tool that can be used for healing. Sometimes you can laugh so hard that it seems that you are expelling sheer madness from your soul, but there is something so right in the healing properties of laughter. Many years ago when I was in my early 20s I grew upset and punched a hole in the wall. I hit it hard enough that my right arm went most of the way through it. If you looked at the wall it was as if it had swallowed my forearm and most of my elbow. I started to laugh, shocked at how far my arm had gone in, amused and pleasantly surprised at my own strength. It was one of those moments that I realized that the long hours at the gym had paid off. On the other hand I


Will You Fight For Your Beliefs?

The Future of Judaism

Daniel Pipes wrote an interesting column in which he discusses the future of Judaism. His opening paragraph reminded me of the "pitch" that many of my BT and FFB friends have made to me. "Until the 18 th century, there was basically only one kind of Judaism, that which is now called Orthodox. It meant living by the religion's 613 laws, and doing so suffused Jews' lives with their faith. Then, starting with the thinker Baruch Spinoza (1632-77) and moving briskly during the Haskala, or "enlightenment," from the late 18 th century, Jews developed a wide variety of alternate interpretations of their religion, most of which diminished the role of faith in their lives and led to a concomitant reduction in Jewish affiliation." The underlying suggestion is that we were always one people and it wasn't until somewhat recent times that things really changed. But that is at best questionable and not entirely accurate. There have always been div

Junk, it is Just Junk

Wrote a scathing rant about how dumb some of the crap out there is. Looked at it and realized that the crap I read didn't deserve that much space, that much time and I deleted it all. We need to re-learn our work ethic. Instant gratification is killing it. Put the time in, grow and allow yourself to live. Take life by the balls and live. Make it what you want it to be and stop just allowing life to live you. You should be living life.

Friday Night Fun

This evening my son and I put on our own "Muppet Show" production using his Muppets. Strange how he instinctively knew that it was appropriate for Miss Piggy to beat up other Muppets. More strange to realize that the memories I have of the show are from the 70's. We ended the evening with our rendition of Where the Wild Things are By Maurice Sendak. It was complete with our own wild Rumpus and then he lay down and I blessed him again and watched him sleep his face without worry and his body completely relaxed and I knew that I for at least one more night I had done my job and I smiled.

I could Have Been a Contendah

Hannah Senesh

Hannah Senesh is someone that I learned about many years ago. I'd like to say that she caught my eye then and maybe she did, but I don't really remember. I was probably around 7 or 8 as I seem to remember it being discussed in class as part of our discussion about Begin and Sadat. I was too young to really understand what they were getting at, but now I remember things differently. My teachers discussed peace with Egypt and how historic a moment it was. They talked about Judea and Samaria and that maybe we would see a meeting with King Hussein to discuss giving the West Bank to Jordan. It is only as an adult that I see the politics of my teachers as the one discussed it in terms of the West Bank and the other spoke fondly of riding his motorcycle through Judea and Samaria. What I do remember for certain was being surprised to hear that a girl had fought during the war, but Hannah Senesh belonged to my grandparent's era and that seemed a million miles away so I m

Is Hell Endothermic or Exothermic?

A thermodynamics professor wrote a take home exam for his graduate students. It had one question: "Is hell exothermic or endothermic? Support your answer with proof." Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law or some variant. One student, however, wrote the following: "First, we postulate that if souls exist, then they must have some mass. If they do, then a mole of souls can also have a mass. So, at what rate are souls moving into hell and at what rate are souls leaving? I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving. As for souls entering hell, let's look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Some of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to hell. Since there are more than one of these religions and people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all people and al

Lisa's Journey to Israel

Lisa doesn't know me and has no idea that I have been reading her story of how she came to live in Israel, but I found it to be very interestings. It has multiple parts and can be found at Part one Part two Part three Part four It is worth reading.

The Mechitzah

Barefoot Jewess wrote a post about how the mechitza can add a little sexiness to davening. Ok, I am taking her thoughts and running with them, not necessarily in the direction that she intended, so I'll thank her for the inspiration and push on. For those of you who are not in the know the mechitza is a separation between the men and womens sections in the synagogue. It is not found in every synagogue and typically is not located in any that are not what would be termed Orthodox. Davening is something that is very hard for me. It is a strange paradox to me, a real contradiction. I have no doubt that there is a G-d and no doubt that G-d hears my prayers, but he/she/it certainly feels no obligation to answer them. And that is ok with me, it really is, the work is good. But for whatever reason I have always found it challenging to daven. If I am going to do it, I prefer to be part of a community and almost always prefer to do it on a mountaintop or some other outdoorsy

The Apprentice

The Apprentice has become part of my television routine. As it is I watch too much: Curb Your Enthusiasm, Sopranos, Lost, Arrested Development, Las Vegas and sporting events are all part of the staple diet of television here at the shack. I started watching The Apprentice because I wanted to see what I could learn from it. Trump is pretentious, bombastic and in dire need of a new hairstyle, but he is a solid businessman. He didn't become a billionaire because he is lucky. And the candidates on the show are not solely a bunch of pretty faces or colorful characters. They are all successful in their own right. One of the reasons that I have had success in my career is that I have been willing to subjugate my ego and learn from others. There is little reason to reinvent or rebuild the wheel just for the sake of proving that you can do it. This is true in all areas, but especially in my current career as professional salesman. I always look for the best salespeople and

New Radio Show

Interrogation Tactics

On a couple of occasions I have written about how we are conducting interrrogations and what the boundaries should or should not be. Here is a new article about some of the tactics at Gitmo. "SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Female interrogators tried to break Muslim detainees at the U.S. prison camp in Guantanamo Bay by sexual touching, wearing a miniskirt and thong underwear and in one case smearing a Saudi man's face with fake menstrual blood, according to an insider's written account." Without details it sounds relatively tame, but there is more: "A draft manuscript obtained by The Associated Press is classified as secret pending a Pentagon ( news - web sites ) review for a planned book that details ways the U.S. military used women as part of tougher physical and psychological interrogation tactics to get terror suspects to talk." Not that it matters, but I suspect that many people would be surprised to read that women are being included in these

The Kabbalah Center Promised that I would Win

The Kabbalah Center Promised that I would win an award if I made a donation. I told them to peddle that nonsense somewhere else and then just to spite them I went to the yarn store and purchased my own red string. I am selling the bracelets for only a nickel. Here is how I get around the overhead. You pay for shipping, you tie the bracelet and you say your own bracha. Pretty cool stuff. Try it, you'll like it. If this works I am going to start my Jack's Shack holy water and donuts program.

The Secret of the Venus Flytrap

This is not from the book of Kama Sutra and it has nothing to do with WKRP in Cincinnati. Just some interesting information about the plant. "PARIS (AFP) - American and French scientists believed they have explained how one of nature's marvels, the Venus flytrap, snaps shut to snare its victims. The plant -- described by Charles Darwin as "one of the most wonderful in the world" -- is able to enclose a fly within its clamshell-shaped leaves in just 100 milliseconds, faster than the eye can blink. Scientists have long wondered how the flytrap (Latin name Dionaea muscipula) is able to do this spectacular feat, given that it does not have the nerves and muscles of fast-moving animals. The answer, according to a study published on Thursday, is tensile strength. The plant first bends back its rubbery leaves so that they are convex-shaped, rather like half a tennis ball that has been flipped inside-out. To close the trap, the p

Study: If it's unfair, chimps will forgive a friend

"LONDON (Reuters) -- Chimpanzees have a sense of fair play but how much they will tolerate depends on who they are dealing with, according to scientists. They will put up with being short-changed if they are friends or family of the animal getting the better deal, but won't allow any monkey business if it's a stranger." I thought that this was very interesting and very cool.

Huge Pacific Wave Damages Student Vessel

"ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A 50-foot Pacific wave temporarily disabled a "Semester at Sea" ship filled with hundreds of college students Wednesday, injuring two crew members as it broke windows and damaged the vessel's controls, the Coast Guard said. Coast Guard vessels and aircraft from Alaska and Hawaii were dispatched to help the 591-foot Explorer, about 650 miles south of the Aleutian Islands and about 1,600 miles from Honolulu." A 591-foot ship got smacked with a 50-foot wave. Wow. Nature continues to show us how tiny and insignificant we can be.

The Life I Could have Had

There are many people who struggle to find themselves. I would argue that most do. It is a topic that I feel like I am intimately acquainted with and something that many people blog about. One of my semi-regular stops is over at Shtreimel's Place . Shtreimel is a man caught in a quandary about his place in the world. And as I said before I think that is a common theme and one of the reasons that blogs hold so much interest to people. We seek answers and we seek people who share common experiences and challenges. Today I wrote Shtreimel briefly about my past. I was once in love with a woman who became a BT. I remain convinced to this day that if I had done the same, if I had chosen to become religious too that she would have agreed to marry me. I didn't go down that path because I do not believe in making radical changes overnight. Personal change should be a process, a journey that you undertake. It should not be something that is done without careful thought or co

World Leaders Mark Auschwitz Liberation

"BRZEZINKA, Poland - As candles flickered in the snowy, winter gloom, world leaders and Auschwitz survivors Thursday remembered victims of the Holocaust on the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi death camp." The sad thing to me is that we still haven't learned our lesson.

Indecency Fines

" WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Fines of up to $500,000 per violation for indecent material aired on broadcast television and radio were unveiled by a top U.S. House of Representatives lawmaker on Tuesday, renewing a campaign to clean up broadcasting that failed last year. Lawmakers and Federal Communications Commission ( news - web sites ) officials, both Democrats and Republicans, have been seeking the higher fines as a way to deter broadcasters after a rash of incidents, including nudity and profanity on television. Rep. Fred Upton ( news , bio , voting record ), chairman of the House Commerce subcommittee that has jurisdiction over the issue, unveiled on Tuesday a bill to raise fines on broadcasters and entertainers to as much as $500,000 per violation. It would also require the FCC ( news - web sites ) to consider revoking a station's license after three violations. Meanwhile, Sen. Sam Brownback ( news , bio , voting record ), a Kansas Repub

Music, Music, Music

Long time readers (now that sounds funny, this is less than a year old) know that I am wont to post song lyrics or lists of what I have been listening to. This should help to explain the prior two posts. I also spent time tonight listening to John Lee Hooker and Big Mama Thornton, but it didn't make sense to me to post the lyrics to those songs. Within the last thirty minutes the following tunes have been on my stereo: Rebel Yell- Billy Idol Get It Started- Black Eyed Peas Pictures of You- The Cure I Will Find You- Clannad Viva Las Vegas- Elvis Presley Without Me- Eminem This Is Radio Clash- The Clash I Want to Be Sedated- The Ramones Los Angeles- X Lean on Me- Bill Withers Time in a Bottle- Jim Croce Real Wild Child- Iggy Pop What would I do without music. Scream, beat the walls and torture the neighbors with my own singing. ;)

I Want To Break Free

I want to break free I want to break free I want to break free from your lies You're so self satisfied I don't need you I've got to break free God knows God knows I want to break free I've fallen in love I've fallen in love for the first time And this time I know it's for real I've fallen in love yeah God knows God knows I've fallen in love It's strange but it's true I can't get over the way you love me like you do But I have to be sure When I walk out that door Oh how I want to be free baby Oh how I want to be free Oh how I want to break free But life still goes on I can't get used to living without living without Living without you by my side I don't want to live alone hey God knows got to make it on my own So baby can't you see I've got to break free I've got to break free I want to break free yeah I want I want I want I want to break free....


You say you want Diamonds on a ring of gold You say you want Your story to remain untold But all the promises we make From the cradle to the grave When all I want is you You say you’ll give me A highway with no one on it Treasure just to look upon it All the riches in the night You say you’ll give me Eyes in a moon of blindness A river in a time of dryness A harbour in the tempest But all the promises we make From the cradle to the grave When all I want is you You say you want Your love to work out right To last with me through the night You say you want Diamonds on a ring of gold Your story to remain untold Your love not to grow cold All the promises we break From the cradle to the grave When all I want is you You...all I want is... You...all I want is... You...all I want is... You...

The Burning Anger

Passion, a passion for life. There is a constant fire that burns in my belly. I sometimes think that the source of all my stomach troubles is the fire that burns just beneath the surface of my skin. There is molten lava there, a forge that can be used to create and to destroy. It sounds goofy and dramatic, but I think in very graphic terms. When I imagine things I almost always visualize my doing them. Call it what you will, a bit Walter Mittyish, but the imagination and the fire are one and the same. I have spent 35 years teaching myself how to best harness that fire, how to use it to motivate myself, how to use it to push myself that extra step. In athletics it is the fire that made me a teammate that people wanted on their team. If I took the competition seriously you were going to get a fierce competitor. It shows itself now on the basketball court. I love to rebound, I love the battle. It is a test of wills. Anyone can score, but it takes a warrior to rebound. I love to d

You Should Do More Campaigning

I received the following email: Dear Jack, I have been a regular reader of yours for some time now. I really enjoy your posts and have found the interaction between your son and you regarding death to be very touching as well as your normal posts. Until today I had not contacted you because I do not like to comment, not because I don't like your blog but because I don't know what to say. Today I took a look around and saw that some other blogs are ahead of you in the awards contest. I think that it is really due to their begging for votes and if you campaign like they do you can win. There is nothing wrong with begging for votes, political contests are run this way and I want to see you win. Please write a post asking people to vote so that you may be among the winnners. I really hope that you do well and look forward to reading more of what you write. Thank you for reading this, I appreciate it. Sincerely, Robert Gillman Dear Bob, You don't mind

HOT 97 morning show ridiculed victims

Now this was just idiotic and stupid on their part. But that is the joy of being human, we all have our moments. I did find something interesting here: "New York FM radio station WQHT, or HOT 97, repeatedly ran the segment last week on the show, hosted by deejay Tarsha Nicole Jones who uses the on-air name Miss Jones. Jones and her team were suspended indefinitely, according to publicist Lizzie Grubman, who declined to say whether Jones would feature in another show at a later date." Did you notice who the publicist was? Lizzie Grubman is the "rich girl" who got into trouble when her temper got the best of her and she had her wild ride which just goes to show you that the public has a short memory. Now I am not saying that people shouldn't have the opportunity to redeem themselves, but after her incident it does make me laugh that she is handling the public relations.

More on Relationships

The other day I wrote a post about relationships in which I said the following: "So as I watched and learned and considered everything I decided that there must be at least 100 people in the world that I could be in love with." Today as I surveyed the blogosphere I came across this post where I read the following: "Senior year my psychology teacher said that 1 in 96 men are right for you." Needless to say this made me wonder if I read or heard this at some point in time. I had thought that it was an original thought, or at least I am still relatively certain of that. But now I wonder if someone else is getting the credit for it. Which really takes me back to the post in which I said Why Didn't I think of That which really proves to me that I was right when I said I Repeat Myself-Or Welcome to the Department of Redundancy Department . I guess that I should get back to work or find a new hobby.

A Silly High School Story

Life is Precious- Live it Well

I met my best friend G on the first day of kindergarten. It was September of 1974. We went to school together until the end of 5th grade at which time our parents opted to have us avoid being bussed to school and we left our elementary school haunts for new digs. We lived in the same neighborhood so the different schools didn't split us apart, it just meant that we spent less time together. But after school you could find us on our bikes tooling around the neighborhood, watching the Twilight Zone, throwing rocks at the UPS truck, or doing a hundred other things that could and would get us into trouble. We were reunited in high school where we resumed our habit of eating lunch together. There were very few days in which we didn't eat together. Neither one of us got sick much, so usually if we missed a lunch it was because I was out for one of the Jewish holidays. After high school we ended up at the same university, but our schedules really did prevent us fr

I am stuck in a Funk

Yes, it is true, I am stuck in a funk. I don't know how I fell into this funk. I am not even sure that I could describe the funk for you. If the police asked for a description I would tell them that it was a hazy shade of winter because I haven't the foggiest idea how else to put it. This happens to Old Jack sometimes, I get taken by these funks the way aliens take farmers out of Cleveland. Sometimes they last a spell and sometimes they last less than a spell. Don't ask me how long a spell is because I can't tell you with any certainty, any more than I can describe said funk. And if I tell you that something smells funky don't ask what it smells like because I am not sure how to describe that. It is kind of a burnt Hampshireish road type thing. All I have to say now is bleah.

Valentines Day- It is a Fake Holiday

I just finished speaking with a woman in my office about Valentine's Day. She wanted to know my position on it. Here it is: it is a fake holiday created by Hallmark and other greeting card manufacturers that is guaranteed to cause fights, ill will and will inevitably lead to a break up and or encourage suicide. As such it should be banished from the lexicon, doomed to spend eternity as some forgotten holiday that is not of use to anyone, anymore.

Faith in G-d

A short while ago I was virtually hanging out with the Shmata Queen . We engaged in a discussion regarding the latest post over at Treppenwitz which discussed the irresponsible behavior of parents who do not use car seats for their babies and the issues surrounding it one of which is the question of faith in G-d. Dave made a comment about this that resonated with me when he said: " What I was trying to say is that we can't place all responsibility for our safety in His hands... we have to take prudent measures to safeguard ourselves and our children." This is an issue that has always bothered me. It is one thing to say that you are going to trust G-d to provide for you and it is another to engage in activities that force the issue. I have a hard time believing that people can be so stupid. The G-d that I believe in is one that believes in being proactive. That means that you can and should take steps to protect yourselves and your families. You work so tha

He hates the Audioblog, but still listens


Auschwitz- A Reporter's Personal Tale

"OSWIECIM, Poland (CNN) -- It looked just as it does in all the photos and films I've seen about Auschwitz. And the winds that blew across the fields, and the dusting of snow that fell the night before made the camp seem even starker than I'd imagined. Yet nothing could prepare me emotionally as I walked through the main building of Birkenau -- train tracks still passing under the main watchtower and through the "gate of death" -- and entered what has been described as the largest Jewish cemetery in the world and one of the largest cemeteries of any kind, anywhere. It is here, at Auschwitz II-Birkenau -- the biggest of the camps that comprise Auschwitz -- that the Nazis built their death factory in eerie order and massacred in a matter-of-fact way an estimated 1.1 million to 1.5 million people, most of them Jews of Eastern Europe." I found this story to be interesting. Sometimes it seems so far away and other days so close.

Hate Mail

Dear Jack, You are arrogant, dumb, stuped, cocky and a jerk. I hope that you lose just like a looser. -Me Dear Me, Nice to see that you have command of the English language. Now all you need to learn is how to spell. In the interim if you wear your pants a little bit looser you won't feel so stuped . Love, Jack Dear Jack, I have watched you right people on the board and thik that you fight dirtie. Eat crap and die Dear Crap, I didn't post your entire note because it was too painful. Spellcheck and proof your work. Beyond that this is an adult blog, you can say shit. Like, "wipe the shit-eating grin off of your face you moronic excuse for a person." Was that mean? Jack, Does your mother know what comes out of your mouth? Unsigned Dear Unsigned, Yes, my mother does. When I was little I was taught not to spit and to chew with my mouth closed. This can only be because my mother knows what comes out of my mouth.

Blogger Rant

Maybe I am More Interested in the Awards Than I Thought

Ok, time for a confession that comes from a revelation. I realized late last night that I am more interested in winning one of the Jewish/Israel blogging awards then I had thought. Initially I was a little ambivalent about things, but then I began to get a little caught up in this as did a number of the other nominees. So now that I am part of the flock allow me to say that I would be pleased if I won. I don't expect to because I don't think that I have anywhere near the number of readers that some of the others do, but that is ok. As I try to do with everything that I do now, I consider what advice I would offer my son in the same situation and here it is. Write because you want to, because you are doing it for yourself and not for anyone else. Put enough effort into it to be proud of your work and regardless of the outcome you can be satisfied with how it all works out.

How To Explain Hate to a Child

The title of the post suggests that I have an answer for this. I do not, not yet and maybe never. But I see this coming in the future. It will be a while before we really get into speaking about hate, for now we are talking about what it means to be friends, to like or dislike people. The day of my son's birthday party there were parties held for two other children at the school who also happen to be his age. Some of the guests had already RSVP'd for the other party, but their mother's told us that they would try and make an appearance. At this age we are still at a point at which you invite all of the children in the class, regardless of whether your child plays with them or not. It is still a magical time in which we pretend that everyone likes each other and that we are all friends. To a certain extent there is some truth to that, but sometimes this practice bothers me. Not everyone is going to get along, some people will dislike others. And my beautiful baby boy i

Russian Lawmakers Targets Jewish Groups

"By STEVE GUTTERMAN, Associated Press Writer MOSCOW - A group of nationalist Russian lawmakers called Monday for a sweeping investigation aimed at outlawing all Jewish organizations and punishing officials who support them, accusing Jews of fomenting ethnic hatred and saying they provoke anti-Semitism. In a letter dated Jan. 13, about 20 members of the lower house of parliament, the State Duma, asked Prosecutor General Vladimir Ustinov to investigate their claims and to launch proceedings "on the prohibition in our country of all religious and ethnic Jewish organizations as extremist." The letter, faxed in part to The Associated Press by the office of lawmaker Alexander Krutov, said, "The negative assessments by Russian patriots of the qualities and actions against non-Jews that are typical of Jews correspond to the truth ... The statements and publications against Jews that have incriminated patriots are self-defense, wh

Audio that is Mute or Moot or something like that