Israel Update

February 27, 2012


“Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God.” Ps 146: 5

ISRAELI GOVERNMENT IN SOLIDARITY WITH VANDALIZED CHURCH: Local Christian leaders and an Israeli government representative gathered at the “Baptist House” church in central Jerusalem last week after the building was vandalized with anti-Christian graffiti. The meeting was a demonstration of solidarity by the State of Israel with the Christian community. It could also be described as a celebration of the strong friendship that exists between Israel and Christians, as well as a call for Christians to respond to such attack with even more love for Israel. Chuck Kopp, pastor of the local Baptist congregation said that while the attack was hurtful, the response by Israelis has had a far bigger impact. “The rabbi and cantor from the synagogue across the street came the same day as the vandalism with a huge bouquet of flowers and a note of solidarity and friendship,” said Kopp. “Another Israeli lady came in with flowers and when I asked if she was also a neighbor, she said no, she was just a concerned Israeli citizen. There has been much outpouring of solidarity and friendship from Israelis.”Dr. Moti Zaken, special advisor to Israel's Minister of Internal Security on Minority Affairs, stated: “I apologize on behalf of Israel. You have the support of the overwhelming majority of Israelis, who view such attacks with disgust. We will bring those responsible to justice, but more importantly you must know that the majority of Israelis reject such actions. Nobody deserves to be vandalized like this, but especially not our supportive Christian friends.” (Israel Today/Ryan Jones) “As for the saints who are in the land, they are the glorious ones in whom is all My delight.” Ps 16:3

MARCH TO JERUSALEM WANTS TO BRING ONE MILLION ARABS TO BORDER: The BDS movement (An international pressure group calling for a campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel) is attempting to organize a ‘Global March to Jerusalem’ on March 30, to coincide with the so-called “Palestinian Land Day.”This will be an effort to repeat the failed Naqba Day attempt last year. The concept behind it is to have a million people marching on Israel’s borders from all the surrounding countries – Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. One watch group leader said the “results are likely to be grave….The leaders of the ‘Global March to Jerusalem’ are very much aware of its links to proscribed terrorist groups, and yet its endorsers include a predictable list of organizations and US and other nationals. Israel, like any other sovereign country, cannot permit any type of attack on its borders, threatening its right to self-defense and autonomy as an independent state. On last year’s Naqba Day (the day the state was established, called “catastrophe day” by Palestinian Arabs) attempts by Arabs to cross the border were stopped by Israel on several fronts. Israel has since taken measures to prevent a repeat of that possibility. (INN) Pray this hostile endeavor on the part of BDS will be successfully averted as it was last year.

HUNDREDS OF ARABS CLASH WITH POLICE AT TEMPLE MOUNT: Following Friday prayers, hundreds of Arab worshippers began hurling rocks at the entrance to the Temple Mount, which prompted Israeli police forces to enter the plaza and attempt to scatter the protest. Israeli police said dozens of protesters gathered inside the Al-Aqsa mosque after hurling rocks at security forces, who, in a rare move, came to the entrance of the mosque and used stun grenades to scatter the protesters. Eleven policemen and 15 Palestinians were wounded as a result of the clashes. Arabs rioted for a second day on Saturday. Soldiers used anti-riot tactics during Saturday’s unrest, as Arabs threw rocks, burned tires, and tossed firebombs at IDF forces. Nine rioters were reportedly injured in Saturday's disturbances. (Ha’aretz/INN)

SHALIT DEAL TERRORISTS PLAN NEW KIDNAPPINGS: Four of the terrorists released in exchange for kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit have returned to terrorist activity. The men were recently arrested and are facing return to prison. Security sources warned that the four detained men are not alone in having returned to terror. Many of those released in the deal are interested in freeing other terrorists remaining in Israel’s prisons by arranging another swap. To that end, they are seeking to kidnap Israeli soldiers or civilians. Before being freed the terrorists were asked to sign forms promising not to engage in terrorist activity in the future. (INN)

IRAN RAPIDLY INCREASING CONTROVERSIAL NUCLEAR WORK: Iran has tripled its capacity to enrich uranium to elevated levels, the UN nuclear watchdog said in a report on Friday. Iran's enrichment of uranium up to 20% has caused concern in the West because it is theoretically much easier to turn such material into bomb-grade material than uranium enriched at below five percent. Iran has doubled the number of centrifuges for enriching to 20% at its fortified underground site at Fordo, according to the report. The UN update also disclosed that Iran had failed to give a convincing explanation about a quantity of missing uranium metal. Diplomats say the amount unaccounted for is large enough to be used for experiments in arming a nuclear missile. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) expressed grave concerns in its latest report over Iran’s nuclear intentions. Israel’s PM Binyamin Netanyahu said Saturday the IAEA findings prove that Iran is continuing its nuclear program “without let-up.” (Ha’aretz)

NETANYAHU WANTS SILENCE ON IRAN: PM Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered his ministers to keep mum on the Iran threat ahead of his upcoming meeting with US President Barack Obama. Late last week Netanyahu instructed all government ministers to refrain from submitting to interviews on the Iran issue, unless they receive a special permit in advance. The prime minister made it clear that the plethora of recent statements on the crisis by Israeli officials and former government members is highly dangerous and ordered them to put an end to it at once. “We must stop this chatter. It causes damage,” Netanyahu said. “We should not be providing too much information on this issue.” (Ynet) Pray for the prime minister’s soon coming meeting with Obama. Time is running out for effective action to be taken against Iran. Israel knows this. Pray those in power in the US government will also wake up to the fact.

US BOLSTERS DEFENSES IN GULF AMID IRAN TENSIONS: In an effort to counter any Iranian effort to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz waterway in the Persian Gulf, the US is increasing its sea and land based defense in the area. According to the report, the US military has informed Congress of plans to preposition new mine-detection and clearing equipment and expand surveillance capabilities in the area of the Strait of Hormuz. US defense officials also stated that the military wants to modify weapons systems on ships so they can used against Iranian fast-attack boats and shore-launched cruise missiles. (Ha’aretz)

UN SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS TERROR ATTACKS ON ISRAELI DIPLOMATS: The UN Security Council strongly and unanimously condemned the recent attacks on Israeli representatives and diplomats in India and Georgia last Thursday. Israeli ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor said, “It has been seven years since the Security Council has spoken out against terror attacks on Israel and its citizens....The unanimous condemnation is a significant step for the fight against terror.” (Ha'aretz)

UN PANEL ACCUSES SYRIAN GOVERNMENT OF CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY: A UN panel concluded late last week that “gross human rights violations” had been perpetrated by the Syrian authorities as a matter of state policy, amounting to crimes against humanity. The panel of three investigators said the orders had come from the highest levels of armed forces and the government. “The commission received credible and consistent evidence identifying high- and mid-ranking members of the armed forces who ordered their subordinates to shoot at unarmed protesters, kill soldiers who refused to obey such orders, arrest persons without cause, mistreat detained persons and attack civilian neighborhoods with indiscriminate tank and machine-gun fire.” The investigators said the report was based on 369 interviews with victims, witnesses, defectors, and other people with inside knowledge of the situation in Syria. (New York Times)

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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