Israel Update

March 7, 2012


 “Let the nations know they are but men.” Ps 9:20

PURIM 2012: The world is increasingly aware that Iran (once Persia) will likely have a nuclear weapon in 2012. This Muslim extremist country’s most hated and maligned enemy - the tiny nation of Israel - considers a nuclear Iran to be the greatest threat to its existence in the world today. The Jewish state has, seriously and repeatedly, warned it may be compelled to use a military option to deal with the crisis very soon. It is not the first time the Jews have been threatened with destruction by a Persian foe: The biblical holiday of Purim will be celebrated in Jerusalem this week, between sunset March 8 and sunset March 9. This triumphant festival commemorates how G-d’s people were preserved from destruction during the 5th century BC by the beautiful Jewish orphan Esther, who became the queen of the Persian King Ahasuerus. At that time a number of Jews were still living under Persian rule and the king’s second in command, Haman, wanted them all destroyed. He convinced the king to call for their execution. The plan was foiled by the courageous Jewish queen and her daring uncle, Mordeci who remain a classic example of teamwork and unfailing unity that saves Jewish communities and brings about the destruction of those who hate them. In finality the wicked Haman was hanged and Mordecai, a leader to the Jews in the Persian Empire became a prime minister. Observant people celebrating Purim today dress up in costumes and read the Book of Esther. They make special holiday treats and give gifts of food to family and friends. It is also a time of remembering those in need with generous donations. Staff members at Vision for Israel & The Joseph Storehouse extend warmest holiday greetings to our friends both near and far.

NETANYAHU: ISRAEL IS THE MASTER OF HER OWN FATE: US President Barack Obama on Monday sought to assure Israel’s PM Netanyahu that the US would always “have Israel's back,” but said there was still time for diplomacy. Netanyahu, in turn, asserted Israel’s sovereign right to defend itself during a face to face meeting with the president in Washington. Netanyahu made clear his nation would be the “master of its fate” in deciding how to deal with Iran, which has called for the destruction of the Jewish state. "It must have the ability to defend itself, by itself, against any threat," Netanyahu said. Obama refused to commit to decisive action should Iran continue to buck sanctions and insisted his diplomatic track would prove effective. The schism over Obama's dogged insistence on a sanctions-only approach to Iran has led to significant tension between Jerusalem and Washington. Netanyahu has openly said Obama’s sanctions are not working, a sentiment mirrored by senior intelligence advisers serving Obama's administration. Analysts agree Netanyahu's decision to stress Israel's right to unilateral action in its own defense is a likely a stark warning for Obama. (INN) “But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.” Ps 3:3

NETANYAHU: I WON’T ALLOW IRAN TO HAVE A NUCLEAR WEAPON: During his speech at the AIPAC Policy Conference on Monday night, PM Netanyahu stressed that he would never allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon. “Israel has exactly the same policy as the United States when it comes to an Iranian nuclear weapon. The Jewish State will not allow anyone who seeks our destruction to achieve that goal. Some people refuse to acknowledge that Iran’s goal is to achieve nuclear weapons, but it enriches uranium to reach that goal.” Netanyahu said that President Barack Obama and most world leaders understand that Iran’s goal is to develop nuclear weapons and that its claims otherwise are false. He said some people are willing to accept a nuclear Iran, claiming that the Ayatollah's regime would not be crazy enough to use such weapons. “I promise you that as prime minister I will never gamble with the security of the state of Israel,” he said. “Iran has broken every international rule, including targeting embassies, hanging women, and sponsoring Syria’s crackdown on protesters,” Netanyahu pointed out. He said the Islamic Republic supports Hamas, Hizbullah and terror groups around Africa. “Iran works for Israel’s destruction each day, relentlessly,” he said. “This is how Iran behaves today without nuclear weapons. Think of how they’ll behave tomorrow with nuclear weapons. (INN)

NETANYAHU AND OBAMA DISCUSS BOOK OF ESTHER: US President Barack Obama on Monday gave PM Binyamin Netanyahu a copy of the Book of Esther in honor of the Jewish holiday of Purim, being celebrated this week. Netanyahu took the opportunity to draw a parallel between the narrative in the Book of Esther – wherein the wicked Haman seeks to destroy the Jewish people throughout the Persian Empire – with Israel's modern day conflict with Iran. Iranian leaders – including President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – have repeatedly called for the destruction of the Jewish state, referring to Israel as a “one bomb state.” Iran is geographically Persia and the Iranians are descendants of the ancient Persians. The exchange took place at the end of the meeting between the two leaders, which lasted approximately 3 hours. After the meeting, Netanyahu told reporters that Obama understood that Israel has the right to defend it against its enemies, and has the full right to take its future and security into its own hands. (INN)

NETANYAHU WARNS CANADA’S PRIME MINISTER AGAINST RENEWED TALKS WITH IRAN: After recent meetings with Canadian leader Stephen Harper in Ottawa, PM Benjamin Netanyahu spelled out the conditions Tehran should meet before the world once again negotiates with it over its nuclear program. “Tehran must be kept from again using negotiations to gain time and advance its nuclear program,” he said. He continued that to avoid falling into this trap, the international community should place three conditions on Tehran before resuming talks: Iran must dismantle its nuclear facility at Qom; stop all uranium enrichment inside the country; and remove all uranium already enriched beyond 3.5% out of the country. “Anything short of that would enable Iran to continue its nuclear program by other means, which is exactly what they have done up to now,” said Netanyahu. (J. Post)

IAEA VOICES SERIOUS CONCERNS ABOUT POSSIBLE MILITARY DIMENSIONS TO IRAN’S NUCLEAR PROGRAM: Iran has tripled its monthly production of higher-grade enriched uranium and the UN nuclear watchdog says it has serious concerns about possible military dimensions to Tehran's atomic activities, the agency's chief said on Monday. Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, also told the IAEA’s 35-nation board of governors about the lack of progress in two rounds of talks between the UN agency and Tehran this year. Despite intensive discussions with Iran, Amano said, there had been no agreement on a structured approach to resolve outstanding issues with its nuclear program during the talks held in January and February. (Ha’aretz) Continue to pray all leaders in the West will be fully informed and convinced as to the dangers posed to the world by the Iranian regime.

KHAMENEI ALLIES TROUNCE AHMADINEJAD IN IRAN ELECTIONS: Loyalists supporting Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, days ago, won over 75% of seats in Iran's parliamentary elections at the expense of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The widespread defeat of Ahmadinejad supporters is expected to reduce the president to a lame duck after he sowed divisions by challenging the authority of Khamenei. Predictions are that Ahmadinejad will finish his term as a weak executive. (Reuters) This report cannot be interpreted as a positive shift in Iran’s hard-line Islamist policies. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is the controlling player in Iran’s political and religious affairs. His danger to Israel and the West, his power to call for a nuclear strike against the Jewish state, exceeds that of his puppet president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

IRAN BOOSTING SYRIA MILITARY AID AMID ESCALATING CRACKDOWN: Iran is increasing the flow of military and intelligence aid to the Syrian army, as the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad attempts to brutally stamp out pockets of resistance across the country. Syrian sources last month indicated the extent of the Iranian aid to Assad's regime: A leading member of the National Syrian Council revealed then that a top Iranian military official was stationed in Syria and actively aiding Syria's suppressing of popular unrest throughout the country. On Sunday, however, a press article cited US officials as claiming Iran was increasing its support of Assad's crackdown, amid recent reports of civilian killings in rebel strongholds such as Homs. (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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