Monday, January 24, 2011

Karl Vick and the Crime of Misleading the Public

Karl Vick and the Crime of Misleading the Public

By Dovid Efune

There is something wrong with TIME Magazine's Jerusalem Bureau Chief Karl Vick.

By now many readers will agree that the publication is long bereft of any shred of journalistic integrity when it comes to matters relating to Israel.

Taking a page from the 'Pallywood' script, Vick has continuously parroted the diabolical rhetoric of Israel's worst enemies and failed to fulfill his basic responsibilities as a journalist.  When skimming through the list of his recent articles for TIME, one might mistake him for a Palestinian propaganda minister.   He continues to lacerate Israel and its leaders, and describes Palestinian personalities in glowing terms.

In his latest article, entitled 'Israel's Rightward Lurch Scares Some Conservatives,' Karl Vick, who was the author responsible for accusing  Israelis of not caring about peace in the now infamous cover story, accuses Israel of 'taking a page from neighboring authoritarian states.' He also refers to Israel as having a 'Secret Police,' and states that 'self-righteous indignation is a staple position for the Israeli public.'

The catalyst for the article was recent new legislation introduced by government coalition partner Yisrael Beiteinu including a bill that calls for "stripping the citizenship of any Israeli convicted of espionage."  Vick also criticized new legislation that calls for inquires to be made into the funding of NGO's operating within Israel on all sides of the political spectrum (a small fact that he neglected to mention.) The article is riddled with perverse insinuations, is factually inaccurate, presumptuous and paints with a broad brush. 

It seems that there are some elementary Middle East realities that Vick has failed to internalize; in his last article he neglected to differentiate between 'Peace' and 'the Peace Process.' Now, he negates the legitimacy of Israel's elected government, labeling representative leaders as extreme, suggesting that they act on their own accord against the will of the people.

If one who didn't know any better was reading the article, s/he might be left with the impression that Israel is headed for an authoritarian takeover.

Scratch beneath the surface, and Vick will discover that what is in actuality taking place is that Israel is faced with a reality in which terrorist organizations and NGO's collaborate and support each other in working to undermine Israel's security . It also must deal with foreign governments that are sponsoring politically-motivated groups (who carry the banner of humanitarian work), as well as a large influx of illegal immigrants that is threatening the financial stability of many Israelis.

Israelis are very aware of the unique threats that they face and their elected leaders are working to address these challenges in a comprehensive and results-oreinted fashion. There is no reason for any country to accept extensive and aggressive belligerent meddling in its internal political affairs by any foreign government, and Israel is now finally beginning to address this interference.

TIME Magazine is a staple in many American households and is likely to be amongst the most widely read periodicals worldwide, and so, if Vick is ignorant on these matters, than this influential magazine is guilty of gross irresponsibility. But if Vick is informed and is acting out of malice by twisting the realities on the ground, than it is only a matter of time before he oversteps his mark and will be  forced to resign in shame.

The Author is the director of the Algemeiner Journal and the GJCF and can be e-mailed at Please visit for more information.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

12/30-1/2 New Year's Weekend Camping Trip to Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada

Great trip for everyone, including Jewish singles. Fantastic area.
Valley of Fire

Jewish Outdoor Adventures


New Year's Weekend Camping Trip to

Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada

Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010 through Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011

(Please forward this invitation to any friends who may be interested)


Join us over New Year's Weekend for a Jewish Outdoor Adventures' holiday weekend in colorful Valley of Fire State Park, known for its stark beauty, undulating landscape of petrified dunes and gorgeous red sandstone formations, including such evocative names as Arch Rock, Beehives, Seven Sisters and Silica Dome. You'll see not only petrified wood, but also examples of rock art left by ancient peoples at several sites in the park. It's one of the most photogenic locations in the Southwest, especially at sunset when the rocks glow deep red. Located less than 10 miles from Lake Mead National Recreation Area, 40 miles from Hoover Dam and approximately 50 miles from Las Vegas, there's plenty to do not only in the park but in the vicinity as well. To join this adventure, all you need is a sleeping bag, pad and tent (or you can share one), or if you prefer the motel option, just pack your bags.


Key Details of this Adventure


Campground Details

We will camp in group campground # 1. There will be picnic tables, running water, pit toilets and fire rings. Showers are available nearby the campground for an additional fee, or in camp with our propane powered portable hot water shower system.


Lodging Option

For anyone who loves the outdoors but is uncomfortable sleeping in a tent, there are several motel options in the small town of Overton (15 miles away) or Echo Bay (20 miles away). If you choose this option, you will need to make your own reservations (simply Google motels in these towns) and are responsible for your own payment.



$135 early bird (payment received by Friday, December 10), including campsite fees, camping gear, supplies, and all meals (kosher and delicious, including salmon, chicken and pasta, with a vegetarian option for those who request it in advance); $160 thereafter (payment received from Saturday, Dec. 11 on).  Note that there is a park usage fee of $20/day for each car to be paid at the entrance gate, amounting to $60 per car for the weekend, to be divided by all carpool passengers. Cost of transportation via carpool is not included, nor is any possible day-use fee for visiting nearby attractions. Minimum age is 25 years old.  Sorry, but no pets.  JOA reserves the right to deny anyone's request to join this trip.


Gear Details

Stoves and lanterns will be provided, as well as all cooking equipment and sumptuous food for all meals. The key camping items you need to bring are a tent, sleeping bag and a sleeping pad which can be rented from REI or A16 or typically borrowed from friends.



Via carpool.  The list of participants will be shared periodically as it is updated so everyone can coordinate carpooling.  Cost will be shared among carpoolers. Valley of Fire State Park is about 325 miles from Los Angeles (an hour northeast of Las Vegas), or approximately a five-hour drive.  


In late December, it is typically mild or warm during the day (in the 60's), and likely cold at night (40's to upper 30's). We will be making roaring fires each night.



Please email JOA promptly if you wish to RSVP.  Spots will only be secured once a payment is received. Your reservation is confirmed once payment is received and you have been emailed with a formal confirmation.  If you RSVP and then delay your payment and it is received after all the spots are filled, you will be waitlisted for any spot that may open up.


To make a payment via PayPal click the following link and follow the instructions.  It is quick and easy.


Payment should be sent to (simply copy and paste this email into the "to" field).


Early-bird amount is $135 by Friday, 12/10/10, $160 thereafter.


Note:  Space is limited. Reserve your spot early!


Cancellation Policy

50% refund for cancellation by Monday, 12/20/10.  No refunds thereafter.

Note that we will proceed with the camping trip even in the event of inclement weather.  However, in the rare chance that the park closes due to weather conditions, we will obviously cancel the trip and refund all participants.



Will be sent about 10 days prior to the trip date, to those who RSVP.  Campers will be assigned to help out for dinner preparation and cleanup during the weekend.



Valley of Fire State Park:

Lake Mead National Recreation Area:


Liability Release

Please be advised that Jewish Outdoor Adventures (JOA) is a Not-For-Profit organization.  It operates without a budget and it has no profits.  It does not carry any insurance.  All funds collected are used for the benefit of participants.  You participate in this and any other JOA activity at your own risk.  A liability release form must be signed (only once) before participating in JOA activities.  If you have not signed one before, please ask for it and it will be emailed or faxed to you.  You will need to sign it and return with your payment.

For more information contact


Lew Groner:   Office, (323) 761-8722; Cell, (310) 770-7962

Ami Alon:, (310) 858-6875

Office (310) 858-6875

Cell (310) 926-1344

Jewish Outdoor Adventures | 9025 Wilshire Blvd Ste 303 | Beverly Hills | CA | 90211-1827

Friday, November 19, 2010

Jan Boston JALSA Annual Meeting Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action

Save the Date - Annual Meeting 1
Save the Date - Annual Meeting 2
JALSA's 9th Annual Meeting - January 16, 2011
Temple Ohabei Shalom, Brookline
Featuring Congressman Barney Frank
Honoring Albert Wallis and David Friedman
Brunch 10:30 a.m.              Election of Officers

Jewish Alliance for Law & Social Action | 18 Tremont Street | Suite 320 | Boston | MA | 02108

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Dec 2 Phoenix, Arizona Grand Menorah Lighting

For the First Time ever: Chanukah Menorah Lighting at WestGate

Join the West Valley Jewish Community for the Grand Menorah Lighting at Westgate City Center Thursday evening December 2nd at 5.30
pm sharp at Fountain Park.

The event will feature a giant menorah lighting with city dignitaries. Live Jewish music will be presented by the Jews Brothers!
Traditional holiday foods of donuts & latkes will be served!

Each participant will be entered into a Grand Raffle!

Dreidels and Gelt handed out for all the kids with Holiday Crafts, Balloon Art and Face painting!

"Chanukah's a time for celebrating the freedom to openly celebrate our values; this Menorah lighting proclaims that message to the
world", said Rabbi Sholom Lew, Director of Chabad West Valley. "We appreciate WestGate's eagerness to bring a comprehensive Holiday
spirit to the town. There is no better way to spread the holiday spirit than with a Chanukah program that symbolizes Unity, Light &

Hanukkah marks the victory of the Jews against Greek persecution and religious oppression 21 centuries ago.

The menorah lighting is symbolic of the oil found in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem following that victory. The small supply of oil
burned for the eight days needed to consecrate new oil for the tabernacle.

The heart of Hanukkah is the nightly menorah lighting, with one candle on the first night, two on the second and so forth until the
eight lights are lit.

"We are encouraged to publicize the message that lighting one light in the darkness makes a difference," Lew said.

The ensuing eight days are saturated with meaning and tradition. Together we celebrate the triumph of freedom over oppression, of
spirit over matter, of light over darkness.

As part of the Chanukah outreach campaign, Chabad of the West Valley joins thousands of Chabad Centers across the globe that stage
similar public displays of the Menorah and its symbolic lights. From Australia to Africa, Columbia to Hong Kong, New York City's
Ground Zero to the White House Lawn, hundreds of thousands will experience the joy of Chanukah with Chabad.

For more information contact Chabad of the West Valley 602.375.2422 or log on to: or WestGate at 623.772.4051. . Also online, check out the photo album to view pictures from last year's Chanukah festivities

Also online, check out the photo album to view pictures from last year's Chanukah festivities

Media Notice: The events are open to all reporters, journalists and photographers; your coverage is invited. Rabbi Sholom Lewwill
be on hand to answer questions.

We invite you and your entire family to explore this multi-faceted holiday and its observances at: Our
pages are chock-full of great content and lots of fun for the entire family, beginner and scholar alike.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Jewish Singles Travel Africa, Belize, Ski Trips. Plus Networking and Free Events in Chicago

To get the Best Price and Cash Back on some events be sure to mention

This is the Chicago version, if you live in another city, please let us know..
we have special newsletters with local events for other cities. 
We often send updates to our monthly newsletter.  We've been getting a lot of questions about which trips are Steppin' Out only trips and which are collaborative efforts. 
This year Steppin' Out launched Do Good Adventures and part of our focus will be to work with individuals and custom groups/organizations who want an adventure and/or an adventure that includes Service/Volunteer components. Some of our Steppin' Out trips will include the service component, but most of those trips are focused on activity, culture and camaraderie  We will be offering approximately 6 a year. But we still want to be a valuable resource to you and we have made arrangement with our outfitters to be a part of some of their trips.

We are still working on the second half of  2011- but for the first half the Steppin' Out trips include Belize, Tanzania, The two Ski trips, & Morocco in the Spring.

The others we are either promoting or sending a group to be a part of another group. There are certain trips where Steppin' Outers comprise much of the group.
Robin Richman
Steppin' Out Adventures

Belize: Sun When You'll Want it Most
cotton treeIt's going to happen soon... the days are getting shorter, it's going to start getting colder and come end of January, you're going to crave the sun and being active outdoors. Imagine staying in a screened, rosewood cabana with thatched roof and private bath at an ecofriendly
lodge in southern Belize as featured on the Jan/Feb 2010 issue of National Geographic Traveler. From here you will experience Belize's wild jungle. Based on a beautiful river and
surrounded by lush, tropical gardens, we will be amongst the friendly Mayan people who live in small,
traditional villages of 15-30 families in the rain forest.Take advantage of this amazing itinerary that has us hiking waterfalls and caves, learning to make chocolate from the locals, horse back riding and relaxing on the beach. 
January 29- Feb. 6, 2011
Price is $2600, but save $100 if you sign up this week. After December 15, price goes up to  $2775. (includes all meals, internal flights, all activities, accommodations, etc.)  Read more about the trip here.

Ski Trips: Join us for a Party on the Slopes
apre ski

Get ready to mingle on the slopes.. an amazing way to meet fun spirited people like yourselves. We've been crafting parties on the slopes for over 10  years!

We're going to Telluride Feb. 20-27 (shorter options available) . Telluride is a laid back, mining town where the town's care-free attitude is contagious. One of the most scenic mountains in
Colorado. And while it might be laid back, our accommodations are four star-- the only ski-in ski out hotel in the whole resort, and it comes with all the bells and whistles, including the largest spa and indoor climbing wall in Colorado! All skiers welcome, but
for those looking for a ski challenge, this mountain has some extra challenging runs. The trip is coordinated so there are all different kinds of activities to meet and get to know different groups of people at breakfasts, special mountain lunches, dinners and happy hours.  Check out all the
information here

The second ski trip takes you the week of March 6-13 (shorter options available) to Steamboat Springs, home of the deep powder and natural hot springs! Known for  true western hospitality, and friendliness of the mountain, Steamboat offers one of the biggest ski mountains in North America! 142 trails make Steamboat the 2nd largest mountain in Colorado with terrain for all level skiers and snowboarders. Steppin' Out hosts some great Après Ski parties not only on the slopes, but post après ski in the hot springs under the stars. Find all the information and pricing here

AFRICA SPECIAL FOR SKIERS: Wondering why I'm putting an Africa Special in the Ski Trip section?  Because I'm leaving to take a group to South Africa next week and I have to review the contracts with the hotels before I go.. That means, I'm giving you another incentive to sign up early.  $75 off the current price and an additional $50 off for anyone who brings someone new...

Costa Rica and Other Winter Holiday Trips
You want to get away over the Winter Holiday Break?
Steppin' Out isn't doing our own trips during this time frame but we have picked a few that we think have a Steppin' Out style and we hope you'll enjoy.

Costa Rica: Our outfitter in Costa Rica is organizing a Jewish Singles trip Dec. 25- Jan. 1st. This is the 4th year we've done this with them and people who have gone have had a great time. Come experience the fantastic spectrum of Costa Rica's natural wonders. As you travel from
mountain top forest in Monteverde to the active Arenal volcano to the carribean coast you will truly become enveloped in the richness of the land and its stunning scenery. Discover the country's real
treasures through sea kayaking, horse back riding, hiking or biking. Read the details of the trip here.

Morocco Express:  This trip is a snapshot of the trip that Steppin' Out is planning in May.  The local operator that we are using to handle our trip in May does monthly departures.  The trip is open to all but our May trip is a little more active, a little more interacting with community and nicer hotels. But this one is relatively inexpensive. Info here

Thailand- Hike, Bike and Raft
  This trip has all the elements of a trip if we were putting it together ourselves. It's active, basic accommodations but you see the areas that we would do.  We hope to make this a Steppin' Out departure one day. More info here

Morocco in May and the Festival of Roses
sahara duneFrom the colourful, chaotic medinas to the moody desert landscape, Morocco is a land filled with wonder and rich culture. It is extremely friendly, even in the markets there is little hassling.  While of course we have to be beguiled by the lively souqs and tumultuous market squares of Marrakech, we spend more time out of the cities and off the beaten track villages. We'll leap into this land of extraordinary beauty on atwelve -day adventure through crisp mountain scenery, spectacular sheer gorges and picturesque towns, exhilarated by cycling trips, mule treks and canyon explorations, and touched by the warm hospitality of Moroccan villagers and nomads. We should be in the small towns during the Rose Festival which is supposed to be spectacular.  Plod through the Sahara in a camel convoy, and camping under the stars.  Learn to master Moroccan couscous, ancient pottery techniques and explore a seaside town favoured by Jimi Hendrix.  More information here

Robin Richman
Executive Director
Steppin Out Adventures
Do Good Adventures
Toll free and Fax: 877.264.7694
Mobile: 773.960.7477
"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving
safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in
sideways, chocolate in one hand, red wine in the other, body thoroughly
used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO!!! What a ride!"
What's Up?
Comped Tickets to Wine Tastings and More

Dec.  9 at the Ballroom on Erie Street.
Please join us on Thursday, December 9th from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. for a networking reception with the International Volunteer Network of Chicago.  A lively group of professionals and consulate representatives will be mingling at The Ballroom at 12 East Erie (12 E. Erie St., Chicago).  Network internationally without leaving the city.  This event will highlight VolunTourism opportunities both nationally and internationally.

Steppin' Out will be introducing its new division, Do Good Adventures, and highlighting information and tips on VolunTourism. And of course we'll test your knowledge with some interactive games. Many Chicago Consulates and Trade Commissioners will be in attendance as well with information on tourism and service opportunities in their countries. Also participating as event partners are Classic Party Rental, Just For Fun Entertainment and Phil Stefani Signature Events & Restaurants.

Tickets ordered in advance are $35.00 ($45.00 at the door) and cover your entrance to the event, appetizers, beer and wine.
To register, click here

Who cares if it's cold, it's  hot, hot, hot HERE
Friday, December 31st, 8:30 PM to 4:00 AM
NOVA (NOVA has rented out Soundbar for NYE)
226 W Ontario, Chicago,  60654
Join 1,200 guests as we ring in the New Year at NOVA, Chicago's # 1 NYE Party!
Yes, ticket prices will increase as more are sold....BUY NOW to lock in
the lowest price!
For Information, go here

Events and Parties in Chicago
  LPYP want Steppin' Outers  to check out what their networking group is all about  and has offered us a number of  COMPED tickets to their next two events.  Email us to get on the guest list.

WINE TASTING & COCKTAILS at  District Bar :  220 W. Ontario
Frisk Wines, Dalmore Scotch, Gosling Rum & Jefferson Bourbon Nov. 11,  2010   6:00- 8:00 pm

6th Annual Peppermint Bash
Nov. 19, 6:00-9:00 pm

Chocolate & Peppermint Martinis, Classic Cocktails, Great Chicago Chefs, Chocolate Companies & Tables and Raffles. DJ Music Masters will be spinning all the greatest Holdiay Tunes.

Grossinger City Autoplex. 1520 Dayton, Chicago, 60614

Steppin' Out Adventures | 3721 N. Military Rd NW | #B | Washington | DC | 20015