Israel Update

August 12, 2011 

“Now the earth was corrupt in the sight of God, and the earth was filled with violence.” Gen 6:11

LONDON RIOTS THREATEN JEWS IN STAMFORD HILL: Gas stations have been closed. More than 450 people have been arrested since Saturday, when police shot a motorist in Tottenham, which is comprised mainly of immigrant and second and third-generation immigrants. One London resident said Tuesday that Jewish professionals are not able to travel to nearby offices, where many of their premises have been looted. She added the riots have not reached Stamford Hill yet. The riots have spread to only a short walk from Stamford Hill, which is home to thousands of orthodox Jews. Police stopped a riot from getting out of hand in Golders Green, another community with a large Jewish population. Police are battling to regain control of the uprisings that began in Tottenham and spread to other London districts as well as Liverpool, Birmingham and Bristol. PM David Cameron has warned that police will not tolerate lawbreakers and said that 16,000 police officers will be on the streets. Antisemitism has been thrown into reports on the riots, and several religious Jews were at one of the riots. A representative from the board of Deputies of British Jews joined a multi-faith vigil of hope as Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders plead for calm. The prime minister branded the unrest, which erupted in poor, inner-city areas of London at the weekend, as nothing more than criminality. He made no reference to social and economic conditions which community leaders say sparked the problems. The initial trouble followed the death of an Afro-Caribbean man in north London from a gunshot wound after an incident involving armed police. (INN) Pray for the protection of UK Jews and the restoration of calm in violence-besieged neighborhoods.

REPORT:  LEFT-WING MILLIONAIRE FUNDING RALLIES:  Recent rallies protesting the cost of living were funded in part by Jewish-American millionaire Daniel Abraham. The millionaire told reporters that he supports the protest and opposes construction for Jews in Judea and Samaria. “The way to improve the average Israeli's standard of living is to stop supporting the settlements and the hareidim,” he said. He is also known for his support for talks with the Palestinian Authority, although he opposes the PA's demand that the city of Jerusalem be split. Protesters against the rising costs of living marched again on Wednesday in several cities across Israel. In Holon, protesters in the Jesse Cohen neighborhood burned tires and blocked roads after city inspectors ordered them to dismantle their tent compound within 24 hours. Most of the people occupying the tents are homeless. (Arutz-7)  Continue to pray for adequate housing for the poor, the homeless and for middle class families who can neither afford to purchase or to rent decent accommodations.

PA OFFICIAL CALLS FOR FRIDAY INTIFADAS DURING RAMADAN: Abu Sharif, a former advisor to Yasser Arafat and a member of the PLO, called Tuesday on all Arab Muslims around the world to turn Fridays during the month of Ramadan into days of intifada of the millions against what he termed “the Israeli occupation” and the “Judaizing” of Jerusalem. Abu Sharif also called on Arabs to demand that the US and Europe recognize an independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem. He added that his call for the Friday Intifadas during Ramadan was made in order to protect the “Arabness” of Jerusalem and Palestine. Abu Sharif is the same PA official who in 2009 accused Israel of being responsible for the “assassination” of Yasser Arafat, who died in 2004. It has been confirmed by Arafat’s doctor himself that the former PA Chairman died of AIDS.  (Arutz-7)

ITALIAN MPs WRITE LETTER AGAINST UNILATERAL PA MOVE: Over 150 Italian MPs from all the political parties have signed a document calling on the international community to oppose the Palestinian Authority’s bid for a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian State at the UN General Assembly in September. The MPs point out that a similar position - that a just and lasting peace is possible only through a negotiated approach that involves mutual concessions - was taken by US President Barack Obama in his speech at the US State Department in May. The MPs point out a series of principles which a unilateral declaration of a state by the PA would undermine, such as UN Security Council resolutions 242, 338, and 1850, the Roadmap for Peace, and various Quartet statements which call for a mutually negotiated and agreed upon resolution of the conflict while rejecting unilateralism. They add that a unilateral declaration would violate existing Israeli-Palestinian bilateral agreements, most notably the Oslo II Agreements which state that “Neither side shall initiate or take any step that will change the status of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip pending the outcome of the Permanent Status negotiations” Finally, they note the Palestinian Authority does not meet the traditional test for statehood – particularly the test of effective government - such that a premature and unilateral recognition of an unripe Palestinian state could have a prejudicial effect on other regional conflicts. (INN)

SYRIA COMES UNDER NEW BARRAGE OF INTERNATIONAL PRESSURE FROM US, TURKEY: Syrian President Bashar Assad came under a new barrage of international pressure Tuesday with the Turkish foreign minister urging him to stop killing protesters and US officials saying the Obama administration is preparing to explicitly demand his departure. Even as Assad held more than six hours of talks with the visiting Turkish minister, his military unleashed fresh attacks on restive areas, attacks that activists said killed more than 20 people. Assad rebuffed the pressure to scale back the crackdown. Instead, he declared the government will relentlessly fight “terrorist groups” - a term Syrian authorities often use for government opponents even though most of those killed are unarmed, peaceful protesters. Rights groups say about 1,700 people have been killed since March. An aggressive new military offensive that began with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan a week ago has killed several hundred. (AP) “His mischief will return upon his own head, His violence will descend upon his own pate.”  Ps 7:16

ASSAD EXECUTED SYRIAN DEFENSE MINISTER:  Less than 24 hours after Syrian Defense Minister Ali Habib was fired – he was found dead, according to reports in Syria. The Opposition says President Assad had him killed. Syrian official press reported Habib had died of a disease, but opposition websites claimed that he was executed by the government. A-Sharq al-Awsat reported Tuesday that Habib had opposed the lethal operation at Hama that cost the lives of hundreds of civilians. On Monday Syrian strongman Assad announced the appointment of the chief of staff, Daud Rajha, as defense minister in place of Habib. Assad said the appointment is part of the reforms he is implementing and claimed that Habib was suffering from a serious illness, and his condition was deteriorating. Opposition websites, however, reported Habib had been found dead in his apartment after he was assassinated by Assad's men. (INN)

IRAN BACKS LEBANON’S CLAIMS ON ISRAEL GAS FIND:  Iran has bolstered the Lebanese and Hizbullah threat to go to war over their claims on huge gas fields discovered by Israel off the Haifa coast. Iranian ambassador to Lebanon Ghazanfar Rokn-Abadi said Iran is prepared to cooperate with Lebanon due to its self-sufficiency in energy fields. Iran reported the oil and gas fields discovered by the “Zionist regime” are in districts “belonging to Lebanon's economic zone monopoly, which have been occupied.” The discovery of the gigantic Tamar and Leviathan gas fields 80 miles off Israel’s northern coast is considered to be the biggest in years, with the field possibly having the world’s largest gas reserves. Commercial quantities of oil also are indicated. Since the discovery, Lebanon has claimed the field is in its territorial waters, and Hizbullah, which dominates the coalition government along with pro-Syrian elements, has said it will back Lebanon, using force if necessary. (Arutz-7)

2,000 YEAR OLD SWORD, MENORAH SKETCH FOUND: Inside the canal, where Jerusalemites hid from the Romans during the siege of the Second Temple, a 2,000-year-old iron sword has been found. The sword was inside a leather scabbard. Parts of the belt that carried the scabbard were also found. Those in charge of the archaeological digs said the sword may have belonged to a Roman infantryman who was stationed in Jerusalem when the Great Rebellion broke out in 66 CE. At the side of the canal, a stone tablet was found with a rare etching of the golden Menorah that was a central item in the Jewish Temple. The archaeologists noted that since it was found close to the Mount it is very important. They surmise that a person who had seen the real Menorah and was impressed by its beauty engraved its image on a slab of stone and then threw it to the side of the road, not imagining that his creation would be found 2,000 years later. (INN)

Blessings from Israel 

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff 


As international speakers and messengers of the Good News through music, Barry and Batya Segal are at the forefront of what God is doing in the present day nation of Israel. With strong ties in both the nations and Jerusalem, the Segals are weaving the deepest roots of our biblical heritage together with the fresh Spirit-filled worship of today to create their rich harmony of Scripture and song.

The Segals have a vast vision for God's purposes in the nations and to the people of Israel. In fact, their longing to help rebuild Israel both spiritually and physically inspired them to pioneer the non-profit charity organization, Vision for Israel and The Joseph Storehouse. This arm of their ministry focuses on assisting the poor and needy, widows and orphans, and reaching out to the new Jewish immigrants coming into the land of Israel. Vision 's most challenging project to date is "The Joseph StorehouseŽ", humanitarian aid center, located in the hills of Jerusalem. The Joseph Storehouse functions as a channel of blessing to all of Israel, Jewish and Arab, through the gathering and distribution of emergency medical supplies, food, clothing, and other basic life necessities. USA office contact info: Vision for Israel, PO Box 7743, Charlotte NC 28241, 866-351-0075. The Segal's web site is


Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.    


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