Thursday, December 30, 2010

Anfield Remembers Avi Cohen z'l

Click here to watch the applause to honor the late Avi Cohen & Bill Jones.

One of the banners displayed:


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Avi Cohen z'l

After fighting for his life for 8 days, Avi Cohen z'l passed away this morning at the age of 54.

Cohen z'l was the 1st Israeli to play for Liverpool (and the top flight in England), who at the time were one of the best teams in Europe (if not the best).

Click here for Haaretz's write up.

Click here for King Kenny's (as well as others) tribute.

Click here for Avi Cohen, the Road Sign

Click here for Liverpool's plan to honor Avi Cohen against Wolves (29.12.2010 vs Wolves)

May his soul rest in peace, Baruch Dayan Ha'Emet

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Eli's Last Words

נדיה יקרתי, משפחתי היקרה, אני כותב אליכם מילים אחרונות אלה בתקווה שתישארו תמיד מאוחדים. אני מבקש מאשתי שתסלח לי, שתדאג לעצמה ושתעניק השכלה טובה לילדינו ... נדיה יקירתי, ראשית את להינשא שנית, למאן יהיה אב לילדינו, בנושא זה את חופשיה לגמרי. אני מבקשך לא להתאבל על העבר אלא לפנות אל העתיד. אני שולח לכם נשיקות ארונות. התפללו לעליית נשמתי.
שלכם, אלי

Syria likes to go on and on about how Israel isn't serious about peace, while they naturally are.

Syria should show how serious they are to Israel and the world by simply returning the bones of Eli Cohen z'l to Israel. Put all the pressure on Israel to re-start peace talks with Syria, while allowing his family to bury his remains under this tombstone:

Sadly, they'll never show anyone how desperate for peace talks they really are ...

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Yaakov and his sons

I liked this analysis by R' Yaakov Kamenetsky:

Jacob was like the sun and his sons were like stars. When the sun is out, stars are not visible, but when the sun sets, the stars take over the sky. So too, after Jacob's death, the tribal ancestors achieved greater importance, for the presence of their light in the increasing darkness of the Egyptian exile kept hope alive in their offspring. As long as Jews do not recognize the onset of exile, as long as they are conscious of their true roots, they are only in geographic, but not spiritual, exile.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Robbie & I

I was going through some old documents, and I found the first contribution I made to an article, albeit an internet footy article. The article was written by James Gill shortly after Liverpool had sold Robbie Fowler, a player I grew up idolizing. Though the link to the article is no longer available, here it that article (note to self: next time, alt + print screen):

Fans 'broken' at Fowler move
28 November 2001


Most readers have taken Robbie Fowler’s move from Liverpool to Leeds pretty badly.

Now that Fowler has agreed personal terms with Leeds, some of you couldn’t be more upset.

Ben Cambers took it particularly badly by revealing that he "will be going into mourning for a week.” I’m sure he’s not the only one.

Taylan took the move just as badly saying that Fowler's departure had “broken” him.

Taylan makes the point that Fowler was one of a few players to have come up through the ranks at Liverpool with most of the current squad brought in from elsewhere. He’ll now be cheering for the likes of Michael Owen, Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher.

Shah Punit highlighted the fact that Fowler should not have been allowed to leave, due to the fact that Liverpool are out to win both the league and the Champions League.
One Liverpool fan was prepared to agree with the club, as Kevin Fried felt it was the best for both parties.

“Robbie's brilliance is unquestionable, but inconsistent in a rotation system.” That could well prove to be an excellent shout.

“I would've preferred seeing Robbie playing overseas because he is dangerous, he is a brilliant player, and if he clicks Leeds could become an even more dangerous team,” Kevin continued.

“Good luck Robbie, I'll support you 36 games a season from now on. It will be good to see a smile on your face again.”

Bill Westwood also feels the decision was right and has every faith that young Czech star Milan Baros will rise to the occasion at Anfield.

Bill describes Baros as “a superb footballer as Robbie was back in the good old days.” We shall see.

Leeds fans have also voiced their opinion. Gareth Rhodes of West Yorkshire couldn’t hide his delight.

“What an absolute steal – 26, still to hit his prime, World Cup on the way – I reckon he'll bag at least 25 this season.” If Gareth is right, the Premiership title could well go to Elland Road.

But, perhaps the most profound comment goes to Avram Piha, who says quite simply "Robbie quit Anfield because Liverpool quit on Robbie."

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Joseph's punishment, Yehuda's reaction

What led Yehuda to confront Joseph when all the brothers shirked away?

One explanation I really liked is from Meshech Chochmah. At the end of Mikeitz, Yehuda realizes that Joseph's punishment for Benjamin is a result of a fabricated charge. Benjamin had just been branded a thief after being caught 'red handed' with Joseph's goblet. Why then does Joseph want a thief to be a servant in his own household? Yehuda realized that this was a forced predicament (as Sforno remarks in VaYigash 44:18), and this gave him the courage to approach Joseph and contest the punishment.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Hint in their Names

R' Hirsch comments that Joseph's choice of name for his two sons (Mikeitz 41:51-52) is proof of his loyalty to his origins and determination not to be a part of Egyptian culture. How so?

Joseph named his first son Manasseh because "God has made me forget" (כי נשני אלוקים). Akeidah comments that Joseph was expressing his gratefulness that God had allowed him to forget the hardships inflicted upon him due to his brothers' actions. He had made peace with the 'master plan,' which allowed him to forget any ill will he may have felt towards his brothers, and eventually open up Goshen to his them (protecting them from any Egyptian influence) once his dreams were fulfilled.

His second son is called Ephraim, for "God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering," (כי הפרני אלוקים בארץ עניי). Despite his dramatic ascent to being the 2nd most powerful man in Egypt, he still regarded Egypt as the land of his suffering. As Abarbanel notes, despite the greatness and splendor Joseph enjoyed as viceroy, he still saw himself as a stranger in Egypt and was 'suffering' as he was away from his father, his family & the Holy Land.

Despite the many obstacles Joseph faced that could have led him to turn his back on his family and home, he managed to make peace with his lot, forgive his brothers and stay loyal to the 'world' he belonged to.

(Ideas taken from The Stone Edition Chumash)