Your feelings of self-worth need not depend on any external situation. Every human being has intrinsic value regardless of what he does. If you make mistakes and transgress, do not feel discouraged and lose your feelings of importance. There is no greater danger than that. Rather, when you have transgressed, strengthen yourself to elevate above those transgressions.
Keep your mind focused on your great potential for accomplishment. Regardless of how much wrong you have done in the past, you can always improve.
There is "no particular significance" to the timing, nor any specific goal set for US Secretary of State John Kerry's trip to Israel this week, aides said.
Kerry plans to visit Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Ramallah to discuss "the normal things you'd imagine we'd have to talk about," a senior administration official told reporters at the weekend. The secretary of state departed Washington on Sunday for the United Arab Emirates. He will arrive in Tel Aviv on Tuesday.
"We're not trying to make any kind of an agreement with the Israelis ourselves, and we're certainly not trying to make any kind of agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians to resume negotiations or otherwise."
The Obama administration has twice tried and failed to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians, once under Kerry's direction in 2013. Those negotiations produced no tangible results.
The effort was followed shortly by the Gaza war of 2014 between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, and in recent months, by a steady tempo of violence, including stabbings and vehicular attacks by Palestinians against Israeli civilians, and Palestinians killed in confrontations with Israeli soldiers.
In preparation for Kerry's arrival, several senior US officials have been in Israel to discuss agenda items. "We talked about some ideas for how to stop the violence," one official said, "improve conditions for the Palestinians, and start to get things headed in a more positive direction."
"I've been here this week having some further conversations along those lines," the official continued. "Nothing concrete has come out of that, and I don't want to get into any of the specifics other than to say that a variety of different ideas have been talked about, all with the purpose of trying to stop the violence and restore calm in a sustainable way."
Despite brokering an agreement in Amman several weeks ago to install cameras on the Temple Mount (Haram al-Sharif), where Palestinians feared Israel sought change to its operations, the violence has nevertheless continued, with several attacks in this past week alone.
One official said the plan to install cameras is proceeding "exactly as we had intended." But beyond that, there are few concrete achievements the State Department expects of the visit.
"There's no agreement to be reached between the parties now," the official said. "There's nothing we're trying to get them to agree to, right? We're trying to encourage both of them to do the kind of things that we think will be helpful and in their interests and in our interest in preserving stability and moving the situation forward in a more positive direction
(JNi.media) Bayit Yehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett told Israel's Army Radio on Monday that Israel should launch "Operation Defensive Shield 2″ and move to annex Judea and Samaria. The hosts, meanwhile, referred to a quote from a private conversation Bennett held with party activists from the settlements, of him saying, "Anyone who thinks we're sitting in a right-wing government is wrong." The same hosts also confronted Bennett with another, not-for-publication quote from the same private conversation: "While abroad, Bibi [Netanyahu] had talks about a unilateral move [towards a 2-state solution] and retracted only after I shot a bullet between his eyes."
Minister Uri Ariel (Bayit Yehudi) who attended the meeting then immediately turned to Bennett and told him, "Be careful what you're saying," to which Bennett replied: "Don't get me wrong, this is a metaphor, and of course if you leak it out of here there won't be any more such meetings."
In the studio on Monday the Minister responded: "I am responsible for the security of Israel and I won't comment on private conversations. There will be no unilateral withdrawal as long as I am in the government." Bayit Yehudi officials told an Army Radio reporter that, indeed, "there will be no more unilateral moves, we have no intention of behaving nicely when it comes to Israel's security."
Following the stabbing attack in Gush Etzion which killed Hadar Bucharis of blessed memory Sunday, the security apparatus on Monday banned the entry of Arab workers into Gush Etzion settlements, but did not restrict Arab traffic on the roads. Bennet's reaction in the interview was that there is only one solution, "Operation Defensive Shield 2."
Coming on the heel of a March 27, 2002 suicide bombing during a Passover Seder at the Park Hotel in Netanya that killed 23, Defensive Shield was the largest military operation in Judea and Samaria since the 1967 Six-Day War. The results, were an initial drop of 46% in the number of suicide bombings and a 70% drop in executed attacks between the first and second half of 2002. In May 2002, the IDF pulled out of PA cities, but maintained cordons of troops around Judea and Samaria towns and villages, and continued carrying out raids on Arab suspects to this day. The main result has been the effective collapse of the PA sanctioned terrorist infrastructure in Judea and Samaria, which remains broken, according to security reports, even as the new "knives intifada" is raging, perpetrated by individual Arabs who are exposed to social media.
"You have to enter with very big forces into Hebron, and into the cities around it — there is no escaping from executing a kind of Defensive Shield in this area," said Minister Bennett, "The original Defensive Shield, in 2002, was not pleasant, but we did enter the cities as well as the villages and we cleaned them up, and terrorism dropped 80% within one month."
The drop was more modest as we mentioned above, and it took much longer than one month, but Bennett was correct on the essential facts.
Last Thursday, Ezra Schwartz, an 18-year old American boy whose mother is my daughter, Shira's friend since their days in high school, who was learning in Israel for the year was murdered by a terrorist. The government of the United States has not publicly acknowledged Ezra's murder, nor has it condemned the attack.
A petition has been started on "We the People" asking the president to acknowledge Ezra's killing and to condemn the attack. Please sign the petition, which can be found here http://wh.gov/iVP0m, but equally as important, please forward this email to as many people as possible. If we reach 100,000 within 30 days, the Whitehouse must respond (doesn't have to say yes, just respond).
When I signed, there were about 27,000 signatures.
Sara Tehiya Litman and Ariel Bigel have rescheduled their wedding for this Thursday - after Sara's father Rav Yaakov Litman and brother Netanel were killed in a terrorist attack while they were on the way to the Shabbat chatan in Metar. They have invited all of Am Yisrael to attend the wedding - Thursday,after 10 p.m., at Binyanei Ha'Uma