Israel Update

JERUSALEM-ON-THE-LINE
May 14, 2012

“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm.” Ps 20: 7-8

5.5 MAGNITUDE EARTHQUAKE RATTLES ISRAEL: An earthquake rocked Israel on Friday evening, shortly before 10:00 p.m. local time, and was felt in areas from northern Israel to central Israel. Police in the Northern, Central and Tel Aviv Districts said they received hundreds of phone calls from citizens who felt the earthquake. Local residents reported feeling objects and buildings move for about 15 to 20 seconds. There were no reports of injuries or damages.The earthquake measured 5.5 on the Richter scale and its epicenter was in Cyprus. Magen David Adom has sent reinforcements to its stations in northern Israel and is preparing for the possibility of secondary tremors. (INN)

US CONCERNED ISRAEL’S NEW UNITY GOVERNMENT HERALDS ATTACK ON IRAN: US leaders confirmed Thursday that they are worried Shaul Mofaz and his Kadima party’s joining a unity government with Israel’s PM Binyamin Netanyahu could result in an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities at any given moment - and perhaps before the US presidential elections in November. A statement explained that when the Americans believed early elections would be held in Israel during September, they thought it meant a possible attack on Iran would be postponed until after this year. Now, with the stabilization of Israeli politics and the current government likely to end its term on schedule, the situation has changed and the Americans are concerned. In an effort to prevent or at least postpone the Israeli decision on the issue, US leaders last week held marathon talks with Israeli officials at all levels. Israel – as does America, its European allies, and Gulf Arab states – believes Iran is conducting nuclear work with military implications. (INN) In the past, Israel has consistently formed unity governments either before or during times of war. Such a move at this time should indeed serve as a warning signal to Iran that military confrontation is pending if it continues its covert efforts to produce a nuclear weapon. Pray for “out of the box” thinking and strategies on the part of Israel’s leaders – as well as those in the West – to avert the increasing likelihood of a catastrophic global war.

ISRAEL’S PRIME MINISTER WARNS EU OFFICIAL IRAN USING TALKS TO GAIN TIME: PM Netanyahu told visiting EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton last week that Iran was using diplomatic talks with the West to play for time. "There is no evidence, whatsoever, that the Iranian government has any intention to cease its aggressive pursuit of nuclear weapons," he said. Israeli officials told Ashton a diplomatic process would be successful if Iran agreed to three conditions: stopping the production of enriched uranium, removing all enriched uranium from Iran, and dismantling the underground uranium enrichment facility in Qom. (J. Post)

IRAN AND HEZBULLAH PLANNING MORE ATTACKS ON ISRAELIS ABROAD: The IDF has significantly boosted security for senior officers and official military delegations traveling overseas in recent months, amid intelligence that Iran and the Hezbullah terrorist organization are plotting attacks against such targets, a senior IDF officer revealed Thursday. News of the increase in security comes following a recent wave of attempted bombing attacks that Iran and Hezbullah have tried to carry out in Thailand, Georgia, India and Azerbaijan. One of the motives is understood to be part of Iranian efforts to deter the West from launching a military strike against its nuclear facilities by showing the world that together with one of its main proxies – Hezbullah – it can strike anywhere it wants, even as far as India and Thailand. (J. Post) Pray for the safety of all Israelis traveling and serving abroad and that all terrorist plots will be exposed and foiled.

NASRALLAH: HEZBULLAH CAN STRIKE MULTIPLE TARGETS IN TEL AVIV: Hezbullah terrorist group leader Hasan Nasrallah threatened on Friday to strike multiple targets in Israel, including Tel Aviv. Speaking on the occasion of the completion of the Waad project, aimed at rebuilding parts of the southern suburbs of Beirut that were damaged in the July-August 2006 war between Lebanon and Israel, Nasrallah said Hezbullah could target Tel Aviv in any future war with the Jewish state. “We are capable of not only hitting specific targets in Tel Aviv but also any place in occupied Palestine,” he said. “The era has come when we survive while they will be doomed to extinction,” Nasrallah added. (Reuters)

NO LET UP IN SYRIAN VIOLENCE DESPITE CEASE FIRE: More than 55 people were killed and 370 were injured last Thursday as a result of two car bombings near a military intelligence center in the Qazzaz neighborhood of Damascus, the nation's capital. It was the deadliest attack since the grass-roots uprising against the regime began. In retaliation Syrian military forces carried out arbitrary arrests across the country the next day.  Fresh violence hit some areas on Friday, killing at least 14 people according to the Local Coordination Committees of Syria, an opposition group. Last week’s violence strengthens widespread doubts on the effectiveness of the UN-Arab League initiative to impose a truce and a six-point peace plan, forged by Kofi Annan, the former UN secretary-general. The UN estimates at least 9,000 people have died in the conflict, while opposition groups put the death toll at more than 11,000. Since the cease-fire went into effect on April 12, more than 1,000 people have reportedly died. An unarmed UN observer mission has been monitoring the adherence to the cease-fire and peace plan. (CNN)

TOP EGYPTIAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES WOULD UNDERMINE PEACE TREATY WITH ISRAEL: The two top-rated Egyptian presidential candidates battled Thursday in the first televised presidential debate in the nation's history. It featured Amr Moussa, 75, former chief of the Arab League, and Abdel Fotouh, 60, considered a moderate Islamist. Fotouh called Israel an "enemy" of Egypt and promised to alter the peace treaty with the Jewish state. "The agreement with Israel should be revised, and that which is against Egypt's interests should be removed immediately."  Fotouh’s chief opponent, Amir Moussa, said the peace agreement should be reworked but stopped short of calling Israel an enemy. "Most of our people consider it an enemy, but the responsibility of the president is to deal with such things responsibly and not run after hot-headed slogans," he said. (WP) Abdel Fotouh – a so-called “moderate” Islamist - is a former leader of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood, known as the father of all terrorist entities, is the mainstream Islamist group whose political party won nearly half of Egypt’s recent parliamentary vote.  An avowed foe of Israel, the Muslim Brotherhood is now waiting in the wings to seize political power in Egypt – the Arab world’s most populous country.

MAHMOUD ABBAS: JERUSALEM ONLY HAS ISLAMIC AND CHRISTIAN HISTORY: Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority continue to deny Israel's 3,000 years of history in Jerusalem, claiming it is solely an Arab, Muslim and Christian city. Earlier this month, Abbas referred to Israel's presence and activities in Jerusalem as "Judaization" and stated that Israel is stealing what he called the "cultural, human, and Islamic-Christian religious history."  Last month, Abbas' adviser for Jerusalem said Israel is trying: "to create an artificial heritage with a Jewish spirit at the expense of its true and authentic identity as an Arab, Islamic and Christian city."  This is not the first time Abbas has denied Jewish history in Jerusalem and claimed the city for Islam alone.  He has said taking Jerusalem from Israel is a religious Islamic obligation of the highest level, a "fard ayn" - a personal Islamic commandment incumbent on every Muslim.  Abbas' Minister of Religion, Mahmoud Al-Habbash, claimed that Jerusalem has been: "throughout history, the capital of the Palestinian state and the capital of the Palestinian people."  Neither claim is correct. There has never been a Palestinian state and Jerusalem was never the capital of an Arab or Muslim state. Nonetheless, the minister warned there would be religious war over Jerusalem. (PMW)  Palestinian claims to sovereignty over portions of Israel, and particularly over Jerusalem, are illegitimate not only in light of biblical history, but in light of centuries of history. Jewish identification with the land of Israel goes back almost 4,000 years to the time when God told Abraham to leave his homeland of Ur and go "to the land that I will show you" (Gen 12:1). Israel became a nation 2,000 years before the rise of Islam in the seventh century CE, and has had a continual presence in the Holy Land for many centuries. The insistence that Jerusalem must be the capital of an independent Palestinian state is especially ludicrous. Jerusalem has been the Jewish capital since the time of King David. Even when Jordan occupied Jerusalem, it never sought to make it their capital. Jerusalem is mentioned hundreds of  times in the Hebrew Scriptures, but not once in the Koran. Mohammed never visited Jerusalem. The holy city is the rightful capital of the Jewish State.
 

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 http://www.visionforisrael.com/

 

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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