Israel Update

September 23, 2011 

“Scatter the nations who delight in war.” Ps 68:30

OBAMA’S RELATIONS CHANGING WITH ISRAEL, PALESTINIANS: US President Barack Obama formally told Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Wednesday night that the US will veto any Palestinian bid for statehood through the UN. And the president whose Israel policy has been under attack came out full force in defense of the Jewish state, both in his remarks to the UN General Assembly and in meeting with PM Benjamin Netanyahu. Obama told UN delegates that "we seek a future where Palestinians live in a sovereign state of their own, with no limit to what they can achieve," but later added that America's commitment to Israel's security is unshakable. "Our friendship with Israel is deep and enduring," Obama said. "And so we believe that any lasting peace must acknowledge the very real security concerns that Israel faces every single day." The new dynamic comes amid questions about the depth of Obama's support among Jewish Americans. Just a week ago, some Jewish voters in a New York City congressional district said they voted for a Republican candidate to protest Obama's Israel policy. One critic of Obama's Israel policy, the conservative writer David Frum, wrote that the president's words are welcome, but they arrived late. (USA Today)

OBAMA’S ADDRESS AT THE UN WAS AN IMPROVEMENT: US President Barack Obama's speech at the UN was eagerly awaited in Israel and the Middle East region. For Israel, the speech marked an improvement over the previous two addresses at the United Nations by Barack Obama. In previous addresses, Obama had given the impression that Israel arose as a result of the Holocaust. This time around he referred to Israel as the "historic homeland" of the Jews. In another portion of his address, he referred to a Jewish history marked by exile and persecution. Exile means that you are banished from your home (if he meant the Jews leaving Spain, he would have used the word expulsion) again emphasizing that the Jews are far from strangers to the Land of Israel, something that the Arabs continue to deny. The other improvement was procedural. An Arab-Israeli peace, like the peace in Sudan and the peace in Northern Ireland, argued Obama, can only be the product of a negotiated solution. It cannot be imposed from without. All in all, PM Binyamin Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman had reasons to be pleased with the address. (Arutz-7)

PALESTINIANS BLAST OBAMA’S UN SPEECH AT WEST BANK RALLY: Dozens of Palestinians gathered outside Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' office in Ramallah on Thursday, protesting US President Obama's opposition to their bid to gain recognition of a Palestinian state in the UN. The protesters held up anti-Obama signs, including one reading "Obama the hypocrite" and another claiming the American president is siding "with killers against victims." Also Thursday, Egypt's Al Ahram newspaper reported that activists in several Arab countries have called for mass demonstrations in support of the Palestinian bid for statehood. The demonstrations are being organized for Friday in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, countries where uprisings have this year led to the toppling of long-standing rulers. The activists plan to protest Obama's address on Wednesday at the UN General Assembly, which they termed disappointing and biased. (Ha’aretz) Pray for confusion and division amongst Israel’s enemies, also that planned demonstrations in support of the Palestinian bid for statehood will fizzle out.

TERRORISTS THROW ROCKS AT ISRAELI BABY: Arabs threw rocks Wednesday at an Israeli car in Samaria. A 20 month old girl was injured in the face. The baby girl received treatment from Samaria Regional Authority medics and was evacuated to a hospital. The Authority Head Gershon Mesika said, "The 'men of peace' of the Palestinian murder authority provide yet more proof, to those who still need it, as to just whom we are facing. We face low life terrorists who try to murder babies. They hold an olive twig in their mouths and murder weapons in their hands. To these barbarian terrorists they want to give a state. The nation of Israel is strong, the government needs to learn from it and be strengthened by its spirit – no to folding and surrendering, yes to construction and stamping out terrorism." Also this week, an Israeli citizen was wounded from rocks hurled by Arabs as he drove near Halhoul. Three Arabs were arrested Wednesday afternoon in confrontations with security forces near the Kalandiya checkpoint. Earlier, they threw rocks at IDF forces and burned tires. Several dozen Arabs threw rocks at Border Policemen near Har Adar, not far from Jerusalem. The policemen used riot dispersal gear to scatter the rioters. (INN) Pray for the complete recovery of this baby girl, both from physical injuries and emotional shock.  Pray for the comforting of this child and her family.

ONE HUNDRED AND FOUR MKs ASK BAN TO OPPOSE PA STATEHOOD BID: Over 100 MKs sent a letter to UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon on Thursday, objecting to UN recognition of a Palestinian statehood. The letter, signed by 104 MKs, was initiated by MK Shai Hermesh (Kadima), chairman of the World Jewish Congress. In addition, the International Council of Jewish Parliamentarians launched a letter-sending initiative, led by ICJP chairwoman Fiamma Nirenstein, who gathered signatures from 150 Italian parliamentarians. In the letters, MKs and Jewish parliamentarians say that the Palestinian statehood bid "undermines past resolutions based on the principle that a final agreement between the two sides will be reached through negotiations." (J.Post)

NETANYAHU THANKS CANADA FOR SUPPORT AT UN: Israeli PM Netanyahu thanked Canadian PM Stephen Harper for his support for Israel when the two leaders met at the UN on Wednesday. “Canada will staunchly back Israel against the Palestinian attempt to secure unilateral recognition. We view this unilateral action on behalf of the Palestinian Authority to be not helpful.” This was the comment made by Canadian PM Stephen Harper. Harper added that no unilateral actions like this are helpful in terms of establishing a long-run peace in the Middle East. “Canada views the action as very regrettable and we will be opposing it at the United Nations.” Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird also stated Canada’s opposition to the Palestinian plan. Canada backs the two-state solution but only as a result of negotiations between the Palestinians and the Israelis rather than as an imposed plan. Canada reportedly will not only support Israel but will take an active role in the lobbying. (INN)

NIGERIA EXPECTED TO VOTE AGAINST PALESTINIANS AT UN: Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Tuesday that after intense negotiations, he has convinced President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria to not support the Palestinian statehood bid. This is a move which could have wide repercussions as the country is considered a leader in Africa, which many smaller countries on the continent pay close attention to. Despite its large Muslim population, Nigeria is considered one of Israel’s closest allies in Africa, based largely on cooperation in the fight against radical Islamic terrorism. However, a day later, an informed source in New York disclosed that Nigeria would likely abstain considering the fact that in matters concerning the Middle East question of Israel and the Palestinians, Nigeria has remained neutral. (J.Post) Pray fervently that nations such as Nigeria and Australia will solidly stand with Israel against the Palestinian Authority bid for statehood via the UN.

AUSTRALIA LIKELY TO VOTE NO TO PALESTINE: Australian PM Julia Gillard told the Labor caucus that voting for a Palestinian state at the UN was not the ''path to peace,'' lining Australia up alongside the US, which is fighting to convince other nations not to support the bid. Sources said that while Australia would almost certainly not support Palestinian statehood, the possibility of abstaining was still open. (Sydney Morning Herald-Australia)

US AND OTHER WESTERN NATIONS WALK OUT ON IRAN UN SPEECH: Diplomats from the United States and other western nations walked out of the UN General Assembly on Thursday as Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivered his address. US diplomats left as Ahmadinejad referred to the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and the Pentagon as a "pretext" for US attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan. Other western delegations followed shortly thereafter. (Reuters)


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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