Israel Update

April 23, 2012

“May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us - yes, establish the work of our hands.” Ps 90:17

US AMBASSADOR TO ISRAEL SOUNDS WARNING ON IRAN: The US Ambassador to Israel, Daniel B. Shapiro, last week called on Egypt to honor its peace treaty with Israel and warned that the diplomatic window for Iran was "shrinking." In an address that touched upon US strategic, military and economic cooperation with Israel, Shapiro expressed solidarity with the one million Israelis in the country's central and southern region who were within range of last month's 10-day, 300-rocket barrage from the Gaza Strip.  Addressing the subject of Iran, Shapiro said that while the US preferred a diplomatic solution to the standoff over Iran's nuclear program no options were off the table. "The clock is ticking, and Iran must change course," said Shapiro, who maintained that a nuclear-armed Iran was not only "an existential threat to Israel," but "also poses a grave threat to the security of the United States, to our allies, to our forces in the region and throughout the world." (Ha’aretz)

NETANYAHU NAMED ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE: PM Binyamin Netanyahu has been named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by TIME Magazine. Eric Cantor, the majority leader in the US House of Representatives, wrote on TIME’s website that Netanyahu “is one of these iconic Israelis, a strong, determined leader who has excelled during a lifetime of service to the state of Israel. Bibi's accomplishments and service as a soldier, a diplomat, an economic reformer who took on the difficult and politically perilous tasks of challenging the status quo, and a two-time Prime Minister rank him among the world's great leaders,” wrote Cantor. “Now, at a time of tremendous international instability and growing danger, Prime Minister Netanyahu, 62, has provided a compelling and reasoned exposition of one of the gravest threats facing the world today,” he said. “He deserves credit for drawing attention to the threat Iran poses to Israel, to America, to the region, to its own people and to the free world. Confronting Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons and sponsorship of terrorism is an urgent task for all of us. At this perilous moment, Prime Minister Netanyahu is the right leader for Israel - and the right partner for America,” concluded Cantor. (INN) Continue to pray that God's wisdom and strength will be given to Prime Minister Netanyahu as he carries out what may possibly be the most difficult job in the world.

OUR DUTY IS TO PREVENT ANOTHER HOLOCAUST: At a ceremony Thursday on Capitol Hill in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Israel’s ambassador to the US, Michael Oren, devoted a large portion of his speech to warnings about Iran. Attending the observance, along with US officials and members of Congress, he stressed the dangers of Iran’s nuclear program and warned of the possibility of another holocaust. Comparing the conditions of pre-war Germany with the situation in Iran today, Oren described both as economies in crisis, following a war, and likened the supreme leaders of each regime to one another. Oren said Iran denies the murder of six million Jews by the Nazis while pledging to murder another six million—in Israel. He spoke about possible responses to the Iranian threat: "We now have the opportunity - indeed, the duty - to confront Iranian leaders with the unambiguous choice never posed to the Nazis," said Oren. "The Iranian regime can either abandon its military nuclear program or face truly crippling sanctions and a credible military threat," he said. (Ha’aretz) Continue to pray world leaders will not downplay the military threat Iran is to Israel, the West and to the entire globe. Intercede for Israel’s government, military, and security organizations to have alertness and divine strategies for dealing with Iran.

UN AUTHORIZES 300 UNARMED SYRIA MONITORS: The UN Security Council on Saturday voted unanimously to authorize up to 300 unarmed military monitors to try and bring about compliance with a cease-fire imposed last week in violence-wracked Syria. The resolution came just hours after reports a small group of UN cease-fire monitors had arrived in the besieged Syrian city of Homs. A fragile week-long cease-fire had failed to end bloodshed in the country, in which some 9,000 Syrians have been killed, a spokesman for envoy Kofi Annan said on Friday. At least 23 people were killed that day, 10 of them in a roadside bomb targeting security forces near the Golan border, and most of the others in shelling by President Bashar Assad's forces on the city of Homs, further undermining the truce. A spokesperson on behalf of peace-envoy Kofi Annan criticized both sides, but particularly government forces, for refusing to stop fighting completely. Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general said last week the situation on the ground in Syria was highly precarious and that attacks were on the rise, including the shelling of civilian areas. He warned of "grave abuses by government forces." (Ha’aretz/CNN)

SENIOR HAMAS OFFICIAL: NO PEACE DEAL WITH ISRAEL WILL BE PERMANENT: Senior Hamas leader, Moussa Abu- Marzouk's, said in an interview Friday that if his Islamic (terrorist) group came to power in a future Palestinian state, it would not abide by any previous Palestinian peace deals with Israel. Moussa Abu Marzouk, Hamas' number-two figure said any potential deal, even if ratified in a Palestinian referendum, would be considered only as "hudna" (a temporary truce agreement). Abu- Marzouk's remarks underline Hamas' stance that it considers the Palestinians to be at war with the Jewish state. Marzouk said his organization would not recognize Israel as a state. "It will be like the relationship between Lebanon and Israel or Syria and Israel," he explained. "This means a cease-fire rather than a peace treaty as Israel has with Jordan or Egypt." (Ha'aretz) Hudna - a false peace treaty - is concluded only between Muslims and non-Muslims, when the Muslim side feels itself, at a certain point, too weak to carry on the "jihad," (holy war against the so-called infidels). The aim of the"hudna" is to gain time in order to strengthen the Islamic military capability, then to restart the war in a superior condition. "Hudna" also aims at tranquilizing the enemy to believe that it has achieved peace, and catch him off guard. The Islamic side can abolish a "hudna" at will even before the time of expiry, if it feels strong enough to resume the war.

ARABS STONE JEWISH FAMILY DRIVING NEAR TEKOA: A group of some 20 Arabs attacked a Jewish family as they drove to their home in Tekoa on Thursday afternoon. Akiva Ami-El, his wife Keterya, and their two-year old son Benaiya were returning from a shopping trip in Efrat when a gang of Arab students began pelting their car with stones and bricks. Akiva who was driving managed to keep control of the vehicle and to transport his family to safety. He later said Arab students who had just been released from school for the afternoon came out to the road and began smashing the victims’ car with large stones and even bricks. “Thankfully, we made it home okay,” Ami-El said. Arab ambushes of passing cars driven by Jews in Judea and Samaria is a daily and potentially life threatening occurrence. Last September, Asher Palmer and his infant son Yonatan were killed when Arabs hurled a massive stone through his windshield near Hebron. The stone smashed through the glass and struck Palmer's head, causing him to lose control of the car and go off the road. (Arutz-7) Pray for the safety of Israelis living in, or frequently traveling through Judea and Samaria. Pray also for the continued comforting of those who have lost loved ones in terrorist attacks.

TERRORIST ATTACK AVERTED SATURDAY: A terror attack was thwarted Saturday following the arrest of two Palestinian teens by border guards and police officers, near the Tapuach Junction in the West Bank. The two, both 17, took a taxi to the junction and upon arrival began walking towards the checkpoint. Their behavior aroused the suspicion of officials stationed at the checkpoint, who called on them to stop for a routine search. The teens attempted to flee and the officers initiated suspect-arrest protocol, eventually apprehending them. A search of their belongings discovered five pipe bombs, a gun and munitions. The two, who are residents of Nablus, were handed over to security forces for further interrogation. (Ynet)

ISRAEL COUNTER-TERRORISM BUREAU CALLS ON ISRAELIS TO LEAVE SINAI: Israel's Counter-terrorism Bureau issued an urgent warning to Israeli tourists in Sinai on Saturday urging them to leave the peninsula immediately, citing a critical and immediate threat. "Based on information in our possession, terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip are continuing to work energetically to carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli targets on Sinai's beaches in the immediate term," the Bureau said in a statement. The organization called on the families of Israeli tourists currently staying in Sinai to contact their relatives and inform them of the warning. Earlier this month, Israel Military Intelligence chief Major General Aviv Kochavi warned that terrorist organizations were strengthening their hold over the Sinai, adding that Israel had foiled around a dozen attempts to launch terrorist attacks this year. (Ha’aretz) It is our opinion it is unsafe for Israeli tourists - or tourists from other nations - to visit the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt.

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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