Anti-Israel Churches Have A New Favorite Jew: The badly misnamed organization “Churches for Middle East Peace” said of itself before their seminar in June: The CMEP held a conference, at a church in Washington DC, to train women how to harass Israel. The official theme is "And Still We Rise: Transforming USA Policy Toward a Just Middle East," by which they mean transforming it from pro-Israel to anti-Israel. Two days of speakers and discussions were followed by a day in which the delegates lobbied members of Congress to stop being so sympathetic to Israel.
Two of the speakers at the Washington conference were women who proclaim that they are Jews who have embraced Christianity. Unfortunately, according to the seminar brochure, after the conference, “the Middle East delegates will share about their peace-building work on speaking tours around the United States.” Conservative and evangelical churches in the United States remain overwhelmingly pro-Israel. Still, there is good reason to be concerned that some liberal Christians, such as those affiliated with Churches for Middle East Peace and the Presbyterian Church USA, have become among the most vocal denouncers of Israel on today’s scene. (INN)
Intercede that Christians and Jews participating in anti-Israel activities will be set free from unbalanced information and spiritual deception. Pray that their intents to influence members of Congress and other government official will fall flat. Source: Vision for Israel, PO Box 7265
Jerusalem 9107301, ISRAEL
Israelis Still Can't Freely Visit Israel's Holiest Site
July 5, 2018 | Israel Today Staff
is a country that prides itself on the level of religious freedom enjoyed by
all citizens, regardless of race or creed. Especially given the religious oppression
and suppression prevalent in the nations surrounding her.
But there's still one group in the Jewish state that suffers under a severe restriction on its religious expression - the Jewish people. In its exaggerated efforts to be sensitive to the whims of every other group, Israel still forbids Jews to freely visit their most sacred site, the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
Editor's Note: The only ones who are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount are Muslims. Christians and Jews are forbidden to pray on the Temple Mount, and their visits to the Temple Mount are greatly restricted. Meanwhile, Islamic sermons at this location - the holiest place in Judaism where both the First and Second Temples were located - are often highly inflammatory, falsely accusing Jews of all sorts of crimes, and often calling for jihad - holy war - against Israel. This is a disgrace that should end soon. Jews who do dare to go to the Temple Mount are often harassed by Muslims, sometimes even violently. Islam is NOT a religion of peace, and is certainly not tolerant to other beliefs.
Israel Provides Tons of Aid to Syrian Civilians - In the last week of June, Israel’s military provided hundreds of tents and tons of food and clothing to displaced Syrian refugees living in camps inside Syrian territory. Just days later, Israel’s military increased their number of troops along the Syrian border, as tensions between Israel, the Syrian regime and its ally Iran stay high. That’s not a contradiction, but a reality for Israel: They are staring down at war with the Syrian regime, but not the Syrian people.
Israel Passes Bill Deducting Payments to Terrorists from PA Aid - 4 July 2018 | The Knesset overwhelmingly passed into law a bill that allows Israel to deduct the payments the Palestinian Authority makes to Palestinian terrorists and their families from the taxes Israel collects and passes on to the PA, The Times of Israel reported on July 2. The bill, which passed 87–15, aims at ending the Palestinian Authority’s “Pay-to-Slay” program, which provides salaries to Palestinian terrorists who attack and murder Jews, as well as additional funds to their families.
Bridges for Peace, PO Box 1093
Jerusalem 91010, ISRAEL
For First Time, Israeli Expert Selected to Chair UN Committee on Human Rights - 5 July 2018 | For the first time, an Israeli expert has been chosen to chair the United Nations Human Rights Committee, a panel of experts who reviews the adherence of members states to the organization’s rights charter. The Times of Israel reported that Yuval Shany, who is deputy president of the Israel Democracy Institute and a member of the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Law, was selected on Monday.
In Historic First, IDF Appoints Four Female Tank Commanders - Friday, 29 June 2018 | In a historic move, four women officially finished tank commanders course and became the IDF’s [Israel Defense Forces] first female tank commanders after a 16-month grueling pilot program, The Jerusalem Post reported Thursday. The women will be deployed to the Egyptian border with Division 80. The pilot program was initiated in 2017 to see whether or not women could make up the four-person crews necessary to operate a tank in “routine security operations,” within Israel’s borders.
Israel Was Named 8th Most Powerful Nation in International Survey
by Joshua Spurlock
Israel may be small, but thousands of people around the world apparently believe the State of Israel has a lot of power. The Jewish state been named the 8th most powerful nation in the world—and the most powerful nation in the Middle East—by US News and World Report as part of their 2018 “Best Countries” rankings. The United States and Russia were the top two, ahead of China and some European nations. Israel followed right after Japan, placing ahead of Saudi Arabia.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu contrasted his nation’s size with those superpowers ranked right before them. “Even though we are barely 1% of some of these countries, and have a smaller population than all of them, we are there thanks to the citizens of Israel, thanks to the statesmanship,” said Netanyahu.
The rankings by US News and World Report—done in conjunction with Y&R’s BAV Group and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania—included a global survey of more than 21,000 people according to the news group’s website. The “Power” category considered attributes such as alliances, military strength and political influence. Israel’s top scoring “Power” category was its military.
Netanyahu highlighted their importance in the world’s affairs by pointing to his upcoming meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as “close ties” with United States President Donald Trump and other leaders.
Netanyahu wasn’t the only Israeli promoting the country’s ranking. Prime Minister’s Office Spokesman Ofir Gendelman shared his proud moment in a Twitter post. “Compared to other countries, Israel is the 100th country in size of population and 152nd by size of land, but it is the 8th most powerful country in the world due to its military, economic, and diplomatic power. A great achievement for a great yet small country. So proud,” tweeted Gendelman.
Netanyahu also took time to thank the Israeli people for meriting the high ranking. Said the Israeli leader, “In the end, the strength of the State of Israel stems from the talents, commitment, initiatives and faith of the citizens of Israel. So thank you to our marvelous people; it is well represented here.”
The Mideast Update originally published this article on 9 July 2018. Time-related language has been modified.
Reprinted by: Bridges for Peace
PO Box 1093, Jerusalem 91010, ISRAEL
Editor's Note: The strength of Israel is even more impressive when you consider that the population of Israel is only one-tenth of 1% of the world's population. RAC
New World Order with the Pilgrims
As Europe was perfecting a variety of brewing techniques, beer was a major feature of American diets, even before the country was a country, beginning the very first day that settlers set foot in America. Colonists brewed ale from corn at Jamestown in the 17th century. The Mayflower famously carried 42 tons of beer, 10,000 gallons of wine, and just 14 tons of water. It was a shortage of beer on the Mayflower that persuaded the colonists to land at Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts, instead of the more southern destination of Hudson NY, where they originally meant to settle. Source: Guide to Beer, p.10.
6600 Rockledge Dr, Bethesda MD 20817
Editor's Note: I googled this item. Some websites say it is true, and some say it is not, although it is interesting if true. We recognize that alcohol abuse is a major problem. However, we also recognize that the Bible does not forbid consumption of wine in moderation. Wine is healthy in moderation, but is dangerous - even sinful - in excess. "Libations" (alcoholic beverages) were among the offerings in the Temple. Psalm 104:15 tells us that God gives "wine that makes glad the heart of man." Also, the first miracle of Yeshua recorded in Scripture is when he turned the water into wine (John 2:1-12).
Some Christians insist that this was "new wine," which they assume to be grape juice. However, we read in Hosea 4:11, "Harlotry, wine, and new wine take away understanding." Obviously, even new wine had alcohol, and if abused could take away understanding. We need to teach our young people to drink responsibly, although I am unsure about how responsibly the Pilgrims drank if they carried more booze than water on the Mayflower! Maybe they weren't so dour after all! Those who are unable to drink responsibly should avoid all alcohol.
Record Number of Tourists Visit Israel in First Half of 2018: During the period between January and June 2018, about 2.1 million tourist entries were recorded, an increase of 19% compared to the same period in 2017 (1.74 million) and 26% more than in 2016. Between January and June 2018, tourism has injected more than 12 billion shekels (about 3.5 billion dollars) into the Israeli economy. Tourism Minister Yariv Levin said, “The marketing efforts and activities that we are spearheading in the ministry are leading us to new records, as, for the first time, we have crossed the 2 million threshold for tourist entries over the course of half a year. I am sure that all tourism-related enterprises will feel these results in the tourism industry, which contributes tens of billions of dollars every year to the Israeli economy,” he added. (Arutz-7)
Source: Vision for Israel, PO Box 7265
Jerusalem 9107301, ISRAEL
Haley: Human Rights Council Is UN’s “Greatest Failure”: USA Ambassador Nikki Haley defended the Trump administration's 19 June 2018 decision to withdraw from the UN Human Rights Council, saying last week that the body is the UN's "greatest failure." "More often, the Human Rights Council has provided cover, not condemnation, for the world's most inhumane regimes." She spoke of the council's singling out of Israel for criticism through "Agenda Item 7." "No other country - not Iran, not Syria, not North Korea - has an agenda item devoted only to it. Agenda Item 7 is not directed at anything Israel does, it is directed at the very existence of Israel." She said it is a "blazing red siren" signaling the council's "political corruption and moral bankruptcy." (VOA)
USA Report Finds Only 20,000 Palestinian Refugees: Sources who have seen a State Department report compiled during the Obama administration on Palestinians who became refugees during the 1948 War of Independence said last week that the report indicates that only 20,000 of the 700,000 Arab refugees are still alive and displaced from their homes. Members of Congress are demanding the State Department make the report public.(UNRWA, the UN agency which provides assistance to Palestinian refugees and their descendants, asserts that there are 5.1 million Palestinian refugees worldwide.) Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, said that access to the report was necessary for Congress to provide oversight for American taxpayers. "UNRWA lashes out against America and engages in anti-Semitic incitement. Hamas terrorists use UNRWA facilities to target Israeli civilians," Cruz told media sources. "The American people deserve to see this reported State Department assessment, so Congress and the administration can have a transparent and productive debate about America's role in the organization."
Israel has begun to raise the issue in the international arena and PM Benjamin Netanyahu has said UN funds should be transferred to Palestinians through the UN refugee agency and UNRWA should be abolished. Doing so, however, would require the UN General Assembly to pass a resolution in favor of the move, which is unlikely given the international forum's anti-Israel bias. (Israel Hayom)
As has been reported a multitude of times over the past years, Hamas is diverting (hundreds of) millions of dollars of foreign aid to support terrorist activities against Israel rather than assisting its own people to become a healthy society. UNRWA is enabling Hamas in this misuse of funds.
Source: Vision for Israel, PO Box 7265
Jerusalem 9107301, ISRAEL
Why The Concern For UNRWA? Since UNRWA was established in 1949, the USA has given nearly $5 billion to the agency tasked with perpetuating refugee status among descendants of Arabs who left Israel in the 1948-1949 pan-Arab invasion. UNRWA deliberately perpetuates the misery of innocent people. It indoctrinates them from the cradle to the grave to support terrorism and genocide against the Jewish state and its people. It exists as a tool of political warfare in the never-ending war to annihilate the Jewish state. UNRWA targets its services to people of Palestinian descent it calls "refugees" for political reasons; fewer than 1% of the UNRWA refugees would actually meet the Refugee Convention definition. Over the past 70 years, while the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has permanently resettled tens of millions of refugees, UNRWA has resettled no refugees. It is now responsible for the fifth generation of descendants of the Arabs who left Israel in 1948-49. (J.Post)
Source: Barry & Batya Segal, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pushing The Palestinian “Right of Return” Doesn’t Help Peace: Tzipi Livni, Co-leader of Israel's opposition Zionist Union party, who also served in the past as Israel's foreign minister and chief peace negotiator with the Palestinians had this to say last week about the so called “Right of Return”. “In the past few months, I've heard voices in the UK, including senior members of the Labour shadow cabinet, calling for the "right of return" of Palestinian refugees to Israel...
Palestinians are the only group since the end of the Second World War to have kept their refugee status and to have passed this status down to over four generations, creating a problem of millions of "refugees" that are kept as pawns in a political game instead of solving their humanitarian situation. Attempts to derail the two-nation-states solution by pushing or supporting the idea of a "right of return" will only exacerbate the conflict and are the antithesis of peace.” (Guardian-UK)
While researching material for her 1984 book "From Time Immemorial," American journalist Joan Peters learned that the UN made the conscious decision to differentiate Palestinian refugees from all other refugees. Refugees are generally defined as people who fled a permanent home, while in the Palestinians' case, someone who lived in Palestine for as little as two years prior to Israel's establishment in 1948 could be considered a refugee. In addition, unlike all other refugees, Palestinians refugees pass their status on to their descendants. As a result, Palestinian refugees are said to number in the millions.
800 Syrian Rescue Workers Flee Country Via Israel
by Yona Schnitzer/TPS, unitedwithisrael.org
“The transfer of the refugees via Israel was carried out as an unusual humanitarian gesture, and they were transferred from Israel to a neighboring country,” the IDF said.
Eight hundred Syrians affiliated with the White Helmet civil rescue organization entered Israel from Quneitra in southern Syria Saturday night. Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers met the refugees and transferred them to a secure site in northern Jordan.
The operation was carried out following requests by the United States as well as several European countries asking Israel to act swiftly to rescue members of the organization and their families. The international community feared that the return of the Syrian Army to the region would put them in immediate danger, as the White Helmets are a rebel organization, opposed to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
According to the German tabloid Bild, the operation commenced at around 9 p.m. on Saturday night, when White Helmet members and their families arrived at an agreed-upon crossing point adjacent to the Israeli border. The IDF opened the gates and helped load the fleeing Syrians onto buses, which then took them to Jordan while also providing medical care and handing out food and water. By sunrise, all 800 Syrians had been successfully evacuated.
“The transfer of the refugees via Israel was carried out as an unusual humanitarian gesture, and they were transferred from Israel to a neighboring country,” the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said in a statement, adding that Israel “does not intervene with the inner-fighting in Syria and continues to see the Syrian regime as responsible for all actions within Syria.”
Mohammed al-Kayed, a spokesman for the Jordanian Foreign Ministry, added that the operation was approved and carried out due to “purely humanitarian reasons,” adding that the refugees will remain in a closed camp within Jordan, where they will wait to be relocated to Western countries. Al-Kayed said that Britain, Germany and Canada have pledged to resettle the refugees within three months.
The operation followed an IDF announcement last Wednesday that the IDF’s Bashan division had carried out six special operations over the past two weeks to transfer food and supplies to makeshift refugee camps along the Syrian border. Thousands of Syrians began amassing on the border, with no access to food, water or electricity, following a massive Syrian military offensive in the Daraa province that began in early July.
The IDF said it had transferred a total of 72 tons of food, 9,000 liters of fuel, and 70 tents, as well as clothing and medical supplies.
“The IDF will continue to monitor the events in southern Syria, and is prepared for a wide range of scenarios, including granting the Syrians humanitarian aid,” an IDF statement read, adding that “the IDF will not allow the entry of Syrians into Israeli territory and will continue to maintain the security interests of the State of Israel.”
Paris: Arab Man Beats Elderly Jew Shouting “Allahu Akbar!” For the third time this year, French police sent to psychiatric evaluation a man who displayed violent behavior toward Jews. The latest incident occurred days ago in Paris, in which a young Arab man hit a 69-year-old Jewish man wearing a kippah, pushed him to the ground and dragged him by his hair while shouting: “Allahu akbar (Allah is greater), long live Hitler, death to the Jews,” according to the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism. Police apprehended the assailant, but a police physician recommended transferring the suspect to a psychiatric institution for observation. The group said it “again deplores that a violent anti-Semite citing Islamism evades judicial treatment because he presents himself as having mental problems. This should not and cannot explain or excuse his actions.” Such treatment is “absurd.” (Jewish Telegraph Agency)
Pray for justice and stiff penalties to take place against those who injure and murder Jews.
Recognizing Israel's Right to Self-Defense - Michael Oren
A U.S. Army colonel fighting Islamic State in Syria said, "When you have an enemy that uses noncombatants as collateral damage, it is difficult to completely avoid any [civilian] casualties." The same could be easily said by the IDF Spokesman justifying Israel's actions against Hamas in Gaza. But while America's explanation is accepted by the world, Israel's is almost universally rejected.
Beyond killing Israelis, Hamas rockets are designed to get Israel condemned for killing Palestinians. For the same reason, Hamas sends children to break through the border fence and even pays them for every gunshot wound. Each one is a new rocket - cheaper and immensely damaging to our legitimacy. That damage is cumulative. Today, Israel's fundamental right to defend itself is dismissed out of hand. The writer, a former Israeli ambassador to the U.S., is a deputy minister in the Prime Minister's Office. (Jerusalem Post) Source: www.dailyalert.org
Haley: "If We Extend a Hand in Friendship to Palestinians, We Do Not Expect Our Hand to Be Bitten" U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley told the UN Security Council on Tuesday: "In the last three months, the terrorist flaming swastika kites that have crossed over from Gaza into Israel have damaged or destroyed 7,500 acres of land. Now Israel is a small country. The equivalent proportion of land in the United States would be the size of the entire state of Connecticut. In France, the equivalent would be 10 times the entire land area of the city of Paris.... While the international media pays very careful attention to every step Israel takes in self-defense, we must not lose sight of the very real damage that is being done to Israel from terrorist attacks coming from Gaza."
"Last year, Iran's contribution to UNRWA was zero. Algeria's contribution to UNRWA was zero. Tunisia's contribution to UNRWA was zero.... China provided $350,000 to UNRWA. Russia provided $2 million to UNRWA. The U.S. gave $364 million.... And that's on top of what the American people give annually to the Palestinians in bilateral assistance. That is another $300 million just last year.... Since 1993...the United States has provided over $6 billion...in bilateral assistance to Palestinians.... Americans are very generous people.... But we are not fools. If we extend a hand in friendship and generosity, we do not expect our hand to be bitten."
"If [the Arab countries] really cared about the Palestinian people...they would condemn extremism and they would put forth serious ideas for compromises that could end this struggle and lead to a better life for the Palestinian people. They would tell the Palestinian leadership how foolish they look for condemning a peace proposal they haven't even seen yet. The Palestinian leadership has been allowed to live a false reality for too long because Arab leaders are afraid to tell them the truth. The United States is telling the truth because we do care about the Palestinian people." (U.S. Mission to the UN)
Palestinians to Lead Bloc of Developing Nations at UN - Rick Gladstone
The Group of 77, the bloc of developing countries at the UN, has chosen the observer state of Palestine as its next leader starting in January, Palestinian UN ambassador Riyad Mansour said Tuesday. The bloc, first formed in 1964, now numbers 135 countries and represents 80% of the world's population.
Israel and the U.S. have argued that the status of the Palestinians at the UN does not mean that there is an independent state of Palestine, and that only direct negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians can achieve such an outcome. Both countries opposed the Palestinian mission's elevation in 2012 from an entity to an observer state, and opposed the decision in 2015 granting the Palestinians the right to fly their flag at UN headquarters.
Israel's UN ambassador Danny Danon said, "The goal of the Group of 77 originally was to facilitate the economic advancement of underdeveloped nations. It is unfortunate that it will now become a platform for spreading lies and incitement. This will not promote the G-77's goals, and encourages the Palestinians to not engage in negotiations for peace." (New York Times) Source: www.dailyalert.org
Palestinian Arson Attacks Leave
Farmers Coping with Ecological Disaster - Yardena Schwartz
Dani Rahamim, 64, has lived half a mile from Gaza for more than 40 years. This summer he lost 320 acres of wheat to fires sparked by flaming kites and balloons launched into Israel from Gaza, and he worries his sunflower fields will be next. The fires have burned nearly 8,000 acres of agricultural fields and nature reserves, killing thousands of animals as well. Almost half of Israel's land along the Gaza border has been affected by the fires. Ecologists predict a full recovery could take years.
The wheat from Rahamim's fields could have fed people in Gaza. Indeed, much of the flour Israel delivers to Gaza in the form of daily humanitarian aid comes from the wheat fields in these border communities, says Alon Eviatar, a Gaza security expert. (USA Today)
by Fred Maroon
The new Basic Law "Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People" was passed by the Israeli Knesset, and like much of what Israel does, it is controversial.
As Eugene Kontorovich wrote in the Wall Street Journal, "It has attracted a barrage of criticism from the U.S. and Europe..." But as Kontorovich added, "Israel's Basic Law would not be out of place among the liberal democratic constitutions of Europe—which include similar provisions that have not aroused controversy."
Many Jews, however, felt compelled to speak against the new law. The board of deputies of British Jews said, "The lesson of Jewish history is that societies are stronger when minorities are affirmed, and they decay when minorities are degraded," but did not explain how the Israeli minorities are "degraded" by the new Basic Law. In fact, that they are not degraded or affected negatively in any way. Recognizing Jewish rights should not be interpreted as automatically degrading non-Jews.
Some of my Israeli Jewish friends are great supporters of Israeli Arabs, and I am grateful for that. They unselfishly defend the rights of Israeli Arabs, and they promote programs that assist them economically. But the odd thing is that when there is a change that is meant to recognize Jews and their rights, such as the new Basic Law, these same Israeli Jews do not expect Israeli Arabs to unselfishly support the change...
I would like Jews in the Diaspora and my Israeli Jewish friends to understand that Israeli Arabs do not need to be patronized and should not be patronized.
Many - if not most - Israeli Arabs are opposed to the very concept of Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people simply because they are anti-Zionist, and they make that fact very clear by the politicians that they elect. Many other Israeli Arabs do not care much about Zionism, and they are just grateful to live in a country that offers good economic opportunities, freedom of religion, and freedom of speech. A small minority is openly proud to live in the Jewish State because they see Jews as their brothers and sisters and are happy for them; they do not feel threatened by Jews or by their success.
None of these three groups of Israeli Arabs is affected negatively by the new law. The first group is seething mad, but only because they see the new law as contrary to their dream of transforming Israel into an Arab state. Well, too bad for them. They are already lucky that despite their hatred of the Jewish state, they have full rights as citizens of the only genuine democracy in the Middle East. They are lucky especially considering that Jews have no rights and are practically inexistent in the Arab world.
Instead of trying to appease anti-Israel Israeli Arabs, Jews should praise the attitude of the third group and should expect nothing less than the attitude of the second group.
As the new Basic Law states, "The State of Israel is the national home of the Jewish people." This reaffirms a simple and existing reality, but it affirms it in the face of never-ending attacks on that reality from Arabs and from the international community.
The new law even states, "This clause does not harm the status given to the Arabic language before this law came into effect." It does not give Arabs anything new either, but strengthening the Jews' status in Israel strengthens all of Israel and consequently its Arab citizens.
For Arabs who are determined to see the Jews as their enemy, the new Basic Law is indeed a loss, but those Arabs should not be anybody's barometer of morality. They are in fact an embarrassment.
Fred Maroun is a Canadian of Arab origin who lived in Lebanon until 1984, including during 10 years of civil war. Fred supports Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state, and he supports a liberal and democratic Middle East where all religions and nationalities, including Palestinians, can co-exist in peace with each other and with Israel, and where human rights are respected. Fred is an atheist, a social liberal, and an advocate of equal rights for LGBT people everywhere.
Torah - Not To'evah - Shall Come Forth From Israel
The mayor of Tel Aviv has been promotes Tel Aviv as the capital of the LGBT movement. Bibi Netanyahu also brags about the freedoms in Israel, including all the rights of the LGBT community in Israel which are denied in Arab countries.
At the end of June 2018, Israel's ambassador to the United Nations - Danny Danon - marched in the New York City Gay Pride Parade in his official capacity.
However, the Torah refers to homosexual acts as to'evah (abomination). Leviticus 20:13 prescribes the death penalty for such acts. Leviticus 18:27-28 tells us that such behaviors led to the Canaanites being cast out of the Land. Yes, there are also heterosexual sins. However, most heterosexual sins are not considered as to'evah.
According to Midrash (Vayikra Rabba), the cause of the Great Flood was legalizing homosexual marriage. The rainbow was given as a sign that God would never again destroy the world with a flood. Curiously, the LGBT people have adopted the rainbow as the symbol of their movement. We reject using the rainbow as a symbol of perversion.