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Yoram Ettinger: My Thoughts


Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) guide for the perplexed, 2017

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel initiative”
Based on ancient Jewish sages, October 4, 2017, http://bit.ly/2xg0YS6

More on Sukkot and other Jewish holidays: http://bit.ly/137Er6J

1. Sukkot and Senator Robert Byrd. The holiday of Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles) is dedicated to the study of the Book of Ecclesiastes, which was often quoted by the late Senator Robert Byrd, the longest serving Senator and Member of Congress in US history, who was known to quote Biblical verses. For example, on November 7, 2008, Senator Byrd announced his retirement from the chairmanship of the Senate Appropriations Committee: “’To everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven.’ Those Biblical words from Ecclesiastes 3:1 express my feelings about this particular time in my life.”  On September 9, 1998, Senator Byrd made the following Senate floor remarks on the Lewinsky affair: “As the book of Ecclesiastes plainly tells us, ‘there is no new thing under the sun.’  Time seems to be turning backwards in its flight. And many of the mistakes that President Nixon made are being made all over again.”

2. The Book of Ecclesiastes, written by King Solomon accentuates Solomon’s philosophy of the importance of humility, morality, patience, learning from past mistakes, commemoration and historical perspective, family, friendship, long-term thinking, proper timing, realism and knowledge. The Hebrew name of Ecclesiastes is Kohelet, (), which is similar to the Biblical commandment to celebrate the community-oriented Sukkot holiday – Hakhel (), which means “to assemble,” as well as “public” () and “community” (). Solomon’s call for the realization of human fallibility, vulnerabilities and limitations is consistent with a central message of Sukkot: a seven day relocation from one’s permanent residence to the temporary, humble, wooden Sukkah (booth).

3.  The temporary structure of the Sukkah highlights the historical significance of the permanent Jewish State in the Land of Israel – which must not be taken for granted – while commemorating the fragile and vulnerable nature of Jewish sovereignty and the Jewish people: the destruction of the two Temples (586 BCE and 70 CE), the ensuing exiles, the expulsion of Jews from England (1290), Venice (1421), Koln (1424), Milan (1489) and Spain (1492) and the Holocaust.

4. The Hebrew root of Sukkah stands for key characteristics of the relationship between the Jewish people, the Jewish Homeland and faith in God: Sukkah () is “wholeness” and “totality” (), the “shelter” of the tabernacle (), “to anoint” (), “divine curtain/shelter” () and “attentiveness” ().

5. The US covenant with the Jewish State is accentuated by Columbus Day, which is celebrated around Sukkot. According to “Columbus Then and Now” (Miles Davidson, 1997, p. 268), Columbus arrived in America on Friday afternoon, October 12, 1492.  It was the 21st day of the Jewish month of Tishrei, in the Jewish year 5235, on the 7th day of Sukkot, Hoshaa’na’ Rabbah, which is a day of universal deliverance and miracles.  Hosha’ (הושע) is “deliverance” in Hebrew and Na’ (נא) is the Hebrew word for “please.” The numerical value of Na’ in Hebrew is 51 (נ – 50, א – 1), which corresponds to the celebration of Hoshaa’na’ Rabbah on the 51st day following Moses’ ascension up to Mt. Sinai.

6. Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles(in Hebrew), is named after the first stop during the Exodus, the town of Sukkota (סכותה)Exodus 13:20 and Numbers 33:3-5.  It commemorates the transition of the Jewish people from bondage in Egypt to sovereignty in the Land of Israel; from nomadic life in the desert to permanence in the Promised Land; from oblivion to deliverance; and from the spiritual state-of-mind during the High Holidays to the mundane of the rest of the year. Sukkot aims at universal – not only Jewish – deliverance.

7. Sukkot is the 3rd major Jewish holiday – following Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur – in the month of Tishrei, the holiest Jewish month. According to Judaism, 3 represents divine wisdom, stability, integration and peace. 3 is the total sum of the basic odd (1) and even (2) numbers. The 3rd day of the Creation was blessed twice (“And God observed that it was well done”); God appeared on Mt. Sinai 3 days following Moses’ ascension of the mountain; there are 3 parts to the Bible, 3 Patriarchs, 3 annual pilgrimages to Jerusalem, etc.

8. The commandment to erect Sukkot (booths), and celebrate a 7-day-holiday, was specified in Leviticus 23:42-43.

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The YouTube 6 minute video series on US-Israel relations and the Middle East:
#1 The two-way-street, mutually-beneficial US-Israel: http://bit.ly/16FP01N

#2 The Jewish-Arab demographic balance: http://bit.ly/1I60R9h
#3 The US-Israel strategic partnership: http://bit.ly/1RniWWB
#4 The 400-year-old foundations of the US-Israel covenant: http://bit.ly/1TRiJes
#5 Is the Palestinian issue a crown-jewel of the Arabs? http://bit.ly/1T8Ob83
#6 Is the Palest’n issue the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict? http://bit.ly/1LW4hKD
#7 The precariousness of Israel’s narrow waistline: http://bit.ly/1YDNIdJ
#8 America, be wary of a Palestinian state: http://bit.ly/1nRDOYD
#9 Palestinian terrorism – Lone Wolves or institutional? http://bit.ly/1ZgzjnX
#10 Has the Palestinian issue triggered anti-US terrorism? http://bit.ly/1T5WK2S
#11: The myth of Palestinian Arab refugees exposed
#12 The number of 1948 Arab refugees misrepresented: http://bit.ly/1svQbMp
#13 Palestinian refugees – whose responsibility? http://bit.ly/1Ul0NXH
#14 Palestinian Arab refugees – who are they? http://bit.ly/1sgCCAV
#15 Jewish refugees from Arab countries: http://bit.ly/1TFUYSI
#16 Protected-Christians in Arab lands: http://bit.ly/1RyqkZ5
#17 The US Congress – The Co-Equal Ally Of Israel: https://youtu.be/ZkpULdVil78
#18 Palestinian demographic manipulation:
#19 Anti-US Islam-Driven Terrorism: http://bit.ly/2crjsk8
#20 The volcano of Islam-driven terrorism: http://bit.ly/2d4CII4
#21 Host countries, beware of Islam-driven terror: http://bit.ly/2etXXUr
#22 Islam -driven terrorism: http://bit.ly/2f0qkGa
#23 The Unholy Alliance of Islamic Narco-Terrorism: http://bit.ly/2eZirBW
#24 The Misperceived Jewish Settlements: http://bit.ly/2fBPI6G

#25 Jewish settlements are legal: http://bit.ly/2exsm52
#26 Israel’s economy – an island of stability: 
#27 Israel’s unprecedented global economic integration: http://bit.ly/2gOEZGx
#28 Israel facing Western seduction: http://bit.ly/2j7jznT
#29 Iran – a clear & present danger to the USA: http://bit.ly/2hVvebW
#30 Iran’s curriculum reflects Ayatollahs’ policy: http://bit.ly/2iSO5m8
#31 The 400-year-old foundation of the unique US – Israel Ties: http://bit.ly/2jm4JxH
#32 Israeli Arabs – integration rather than deprivation: http://bit.ly/2kt37iz
#33 Israel’s security prerequisites in the real Middle East: http://bit.ly/2jcmRpI
#34 Can Israel rely on foreign peacekeepers and security guarantees?: http://bit.ly/2kWV8OS
#35 Israel beware of US and international guarantees:
#36 US security guarantees and Constitutional limits: http://bit.ly/2mpQc6g
#37 The State Department – a systematic blunderer: http://bit.ly/2mfXDca
#38 Is the Palestinian issue a core cause of Mideast turbulence?: http://bit.ly/2lSMHoS
#39 Connecting the Middle East dots:
#40 The perplexing Middle East labyrinth vs. Western policy: http://bit.ly/2oxPL9G

Yoram Ettinger, Jerusalem, Israel, “Second Thought: US-Israel Initiative,”

www.TheEttingerReport.com, Facebook    Twitter
For speaking engagements and media interviews: YoramTex@gmail.com
All security and personal concierge services while in Israel: www.barhomessecurity.com