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  • Torah Reading: Naso
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Middle Eastern Conflict

Two Arabs boarded a shuttle out of Washington for New York. One sat in the window seat, the other in the middle seat. Just before take-off, a fat, little Jewish guy got on and took the aisle seat next to the Arabs. He kicked off his shoes, wiggled his toes and was settling in when the Arab in the window seat said, "I think I'll go up and get a coke."

"Don't worry about it," said the Jew. "I'll get it for you." While he is gone the Arab picks up the Jew's shoe and spits in it.

The Jew brought back the coke, when the other Arab said, "That looks good. Think I'll have one too."

Again, the Jew obligingly goes to fetch it, and while he is gone the Arab picks up the other shoe and spits in it.

The Jew returns with the coke, and they all sit back and enjoy the short flight. When the plane was landing the Jew slipped his feet into his shoes and knew immediately what had happened.

"How long must this go on?" he asked. "This enmity between our peoples...this hatred... this spitting in shoes...and blowing noses in Cokes?"


The Arab Israeli conflict is no laughing matter. It has claimed countless lives and the current situation at times seems hopeless. But when the Jewish People are faced with hopelessness we unleash our secret weapon: our sense of humor. We Jews have been enduring tough times for thousands of years, yet remarkably, we have managed to keep our sense of humor through it all. Some have wondered what the secret is to our survival. Perhaps a small part is owed to our sense of humor. Our ability to make light of difficult situations, to see beyond today and know that there will be a tomorrow. That no matter how unbearable our current situation is, we will get through it, somehow, and survive. Jewish humor isn't just funny, it's extremely powerful.

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