Israel Update

August 19, 2011 

“They raise their voices, they shout for joy. They cry out from the west concerning the majesty of the Lord. Therefore glorify the Lord in the east, the name of the Lord, the God of Israel in the coastlands of the sea.” Isaiah 24:14-15

WIDOW TAKES ON BBC OVER ISRAEL BIAS: For six years, Steven Sugar pursued a one-man legal battle against the BBC in an attempt to force it to disclose an internal assessment of its coverage of the Middle East conflict which he believed would reveal bias against Israel. Mr. Sugar won an appeal for a full court hearing but died of cancer in January at the age of 61. Now, his widow, Fiona Paveley, has taken up the fight to reveal the contents of the 20,000-word document and the case is to be heard at the Supreme Court. The BBC has spent more than £270,000 on legal fees to prevent the public from seeing the report.  (Telegraph-UK)  Pray for Fiona Paveley to win her case and to expose the extreme anti-Israel bias of the BBC.

NETANYAHU TO CLINTON: ISRAEL WON’T APOLOGIZE TO TURKEY FOR GAZA FLOTILLA RAID:  PM Benjamin Netanyahu has informed US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that Israel will not apologize for the 2010 Gaza flotilla raid in which nine Turkish pro-Palestinian activists died. Speaking with Clinton via telephone on Tuesday, Netanayhu said that Israel does not intend to adopt an outline to restore its relationship with Turkey. (Ha’aretz)  The UN report on last year's Gaza flotilla clash found that Israel's blockade of Gaza is legal and that Jerusalem owes no apology to Turkey for the Mavi Marmara raid, diplomatic sources said. Diplomatic sources in Jerusalem who saw the draft report said it sharply criticizes Turkey for not doing enough to prevent the flotilla from setting sail. However, the report says Israeli commandos used excessive force, though Israel had insisted the soldiers had been attacked and were acting in self-defense.

ISRAEL HAS NOT ESCAPED WORLD’S ECONOMIC WOES: Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on Monday said at a special session of the Knesset's finance Committee, "The shocks in our economy are minimal compared to what is going on in the world."  That may be the case - in part - but the Committee had asked PM Binyamin Netanyahu to attend a special session on the economy in the Knesset. Netanyahu instead asked the committee to convene in his bureau without press presence. He thus managed to avoid what would likely have become a trap in which opposition MKs would have tried to embarrass him in front of the cameras. The Prime Minister told the group members: "Israelis are finding it hard to 'finish the month' financially and gaps in society are growing. On the one hand, the intention is to reduce gaps and make things easier on the public – especially the middle class – and on the other hand, to safeguard the economy and Israel's economic strength." (Arutz-7) 

SYRIA ORDERS THOUSANDS INTO STADIUM IN LATAKIA CRACKDOWNS: Syrian security forces cracking down on opposition strongholds in Latakia herded thousands of people into a stadium and took away their identification cards and cell phones, activists said Monday. Forces loyal to the regime of President Bashar Assad continued hammering opposition strongholds in the country's main port city, especially in the district of Ramleh, which has been pummeled with tank, gunboat, and automatic weapons’ fire after unusually large anti-government demonstrations broke out there Friday. Security forces began ordering residents of the area to go to a soccer stadium ahead of what they described as a huge military operation, activists said.   "They were told they should leave their homes and go to stadiums because the armed forces were going to flatten the area," said an activist in the city. "Cell phone networks were cut as thousands of people left their houses and flocked toward the stadium. As they were gathered and directed to the stadium, their IDs were confiscated."  More than 5,000 Palestinian refugees also fled a camp in the besieged city after President Assad's forces shelled the area. Growing numbers of civilians have been confirmed dead in ongoing protests against the Assad regime.  The latest developments are sure to heighten international concern over Syria. (LA Times)

CLINTON PASSES UP CHANCE TO CALL ON ASSAD TO STEP DOWN AS OBAMA REMAINS SILENT: One week after officials put out the word that the Obama administration would call for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has repeatedly passed up the opportunity to do just that.  Assad’s forces have launched an aggressive and deadly campaign since the start of Ramadan that has resulted in dozens of deaths. The four-day death toll in the Syrian city of Latakia reportedly reached 35 on Tuesday.  US officials said last Tuesday the administration was planning to explicitly call for Assad to go. Meanwhile, President Obama has since set off on a bus tour of rural states to talk about the economy.  (Fox News)  “Unreliable messengers cause trouble, but those who can be trusted bring peace.” Prov 13:17

US NAMES GAZA’S DUGHMUSH CLAN AS GLOBAL TERRORISTS:  The US State Department announced Tuesday it has added the Gaza-based Dughmush clan, head of the Army of Islam, to its list of global terrorists, saying it is trying work with al-Qaeda. The new designation prohibits Americans from dealing with the group and “will help stem the flow of financial and other assistance” to the Army of Islam. The clan, headed by Mumtaz Dughmush, is a splinter group of Hamas and was involved in the kidnapping of abducted IDF Cpl.Gilad Shalit five years ago and of British journalist Alan Johnston in March 2007. Johnston was released after nearly four months, but Shalit remains in captivity, his condition and whereabouts unknown. The State Department noted, “The Army of Islam is responsible for numerous terrorist acts against the governments of Israel and Egypt.” The Army of Islam also was responsible for numerous missile attacks on Israel and deadly terrorist attacks in Cairo and in Helioplios. (INN)

HAMAS HARBORING SINAI TERRORISTS: The Hamas-run terrorist government in the Gaza again refused Monday to honor Egyptian requests to hand over terrorists from Gaza believed to have perpetrated a recent attack on a police station in the Sinai city of El-Arish. Egyptian authorities provided evidence to Hamas implicating the men who Egypt says escaped back into Gaza via tunnels. With each request, Hamas officials reportedly gave different excuses for not handing over the wanted men. On Monday, Egypt presented another official request for Hamas to arrest the Palestinians. Of the 15 terrorists who attacked and attempted to take over the el-Arish police station, 10 were identified by Egyptian authorities as being from Gaza. The requests come as Egypt this week launched a large military operation to rein in Islamic terrorists operating in Sinai from neighboring Gaza, including al-Qaeda affiliated terrorists. (INN)

BIN LADEN PHYSICIAN IN SINAI: Ramzi Mahmoud Al Mowafi, physician to late al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden, escaped from a Cairo prison during the Egyptian revolution earlier this year and has resurfaced in the country's North Sinai area, agencies report.  Al Mowafi, also known among his fellow Jihadists as the “chemist,” escaped from a maximum security prison in Cairo on January 30 while serving a life sentence. According to prison records, Al Mowafi was sentenced to life for a "military case," but more details were not immediately known. Bin Laden's longtime personal physician and an explosives expert, Al Mowafi was born in Egypt in 1952.  He has been described by military sources as being very dangerous. (INN)

PALESTINIANS IN GAZA FIRE ROCKETS AT BEERSHEBA: The Israel Air Force launched five air strikes early Tuesday at targets in Gaza in response to rocket fire which struck near the Israeli city of Beersheba. Hamas sources said three gunmen involved in firing rockets at Israel were hit. Another air strike targeted a squad of terrorists planning to carry out mortar attacks on Israel moments before their attack. (Ha'aretz)


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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