Israel Update

May 31, 2012

“My salvation and my honor depend on God. He is my mighty rock, my refuge.” Ps 62:7

NEW SUPER-VIRUS HITS MIDEAST COMPUTERS - ISRAEL IS PRIME SUSPECT: A new computer virus being described as the most sophisticated cyber-weapon in history has begun tearing through government and other computers in Iran, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian-controlled territories. Dubbed "Flame," the new virus contains 20 times more code than the Stuxnet virus that infected Iran's nuclear program two years ago. Stuxnet was previously marveled over for its incredible ability to adapt and alter its attacks. It was concluded that only a national government would have the resources to develop such a program. Flame has not only stolen large quantities of information from various Iranian government agencies, but has apparently even disrupted its oil exports by shutting down oil terminals. Sources said Tuesday there was evidence that it had erased information from computer hard disks in Iran as well. Speaking to Army Radio this week Israeli Minister for Strategic Affairs Moshe Yaalon would not give a definitive response as to whether or not Israel was behind Flame, but did say, “Israel has been blessed with a prolific hi-tech sector that opens possibilities in both the business and security fields.” (Israel Today/Ryan Jones) Prayers are being answered that Israel being faced with military and even nuclear attacks from Iran and other Islamist entities would have “out of the box” strategies for countering such threats. Please continue to intercede along these lines.

ISRAEL SAYS NEGOTIATIONS WITH IRAN ARE NOT WORKING: The current round of negotiations between world powers and Iran is “not working,” a senior Israeli official said this week, adding that after two meetings there is “not an iota of evidence indicating the Iranians are in any way serious about curbing their nuclear program.” Israel was briefed by a senior American team about what happened at last week’s talks in Baghdad, and the official said what the international community put on the table “is less than what is needed, and even those minimal demands were rejected by the Iranians.” Israel is said to be “skeptical in the extreme” about the current talks. Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu stated on Tuesday nothing short of Iran stopping uranium enrichment, getting rid of what it already produced and dismantling the means of making more, would satisfy him that it had no nuclear weapons project. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Wednesday called the Iranian nuclear threat "a sword on the neck" of the Jewish state. "You don't wait until they acquire the capability and they build it and they deploy it. Then it's too late, you cannot act. You cannot sleep quietly when the Iranians are going to the point after which Israel will not be able to do anything. Israel doesn't have an option, and I repeat does not have an option, to ignore this challenge," said Barak. (J.Post/NY Times) “Sustain me, my God, according to your promise, and I will live.” Ps119:116

EXPERT SAYS ATTACK ON IRAN WOULD BE BETTER THAN NUCLEAR IRAN: Former Military Intelligence chief Amos Yadlin said Tuesday that military action in Iran would be less perilous to the Jewish state than if Iran obtains a nuclear bomb. Speaking at the annual conference of the Institute for National Security in Tel Aviv, Yadlin said, “Attacking Iran would be less dangerous for Israel than a nuclear Iran, but we need to work out a strategic plan not only for the attack itself but also for the day after the attack.” Speaking at the same conference, PM Netanyahu expressed his disappointment over the way the negotiations between world powers and Iran, over its disputed nuclear program, were going. (Arutz-7)

OBAMA NEEDS IRAN FOR REELECTION, SAYS FORMER EU ADVISER: President Barack Obama wants world powers to keep talking with Iran to keep the price of oil from rising and hurting his election chances, says a former European Union adviser. "The Americans' motive for negotiation is keeping the situation calm to prevent Israel's unsolicited moves that might upset the electoral process in the United States," according to Alastair Crooke, former adviser to EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana. Crooke said the US policy of continued talks with Iran is also aimed at "stopping increasing tensions in the Middle-East resulting in escalation in oil prices.” The de facto Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, is running neck-and-neck with President Obama in pre-election polls. A senior member of the Iranian Parliament was recently quoted as saying President Obama needs an agreement with Iran to get reelected. (Arutz-7) Continue to pray for the soon coming US presidential election. It is vital for citizens to be prepared to cast a vote for the candidate most likely to curb the onslaught of moral evil being unleashed upon the US – also for the man and his political associates who will strengthen rather than undermine relations with the Jewish state.

UN OFFICIALS FINGER ASSAD THUGS IN HOULA MASSACRE: UN human rights officials on Tuesday said most of the 108 victims of a massacre in Syria last week were shot at close range “execution style.” The massacre on Friday in Houla, which included 34 women, 49 children, and in some cases entire families, generated new international outrage after 14 months of bloodletting in Syria. France, Britain, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, the Netherlands, Australia and the US all took action against Syrian diplomats in protest. In most cases, Damascus' envoys were given 48 hours to depart their host countries. Russia has largely stood by Damascus and shielded it from international action. On Tuesday, despite reports of a second massacre that left at least 41 dead, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused unnamed countries of trying to use the Houla killings "as a pretext for taking military measures." Lavrov's comments seemed to indicate that officials in Washington are now mulling whether to begin arming the Free Syrian Army rebels fighting Assad's regime. Western European nations, most notably France, have been lobbying for the West to equip and train the poorly organized FSA – but few want to go on record to say the UN-backed Annan plan is failing. (INN)

US CUTS MIDEAST MILITARY DRILL SHORT: A massive joint military drill sponsored by the US with several Mideast nations has suddenly been canceled. No reason was given for the abrupt about-face. Over 12,000 soldiers were taking part in the war games, representing 19 countries, including Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Pakistan, Qatar, Britain, France, Italy, Spain and Australia. Of those, 6,500 soldiers were from the US, and 3,500 were from Jordan. The drill focused on training Jordanian and Saudi service personnel in how to treat refugees, and on naval interception of smuggling vessels. Although it began on time, the exercise was instead halted on Monday - three days early. One possible explanation may have to do with Syrian irritation over the drill. Syrian newspapers claimed the “Exercise Eager Lion 12” was named after the Arabic surname of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as a message that foreign forces are knocking at his door. Assad means “lion” in Arabic. Thus far, at least 110,000 Syrian refugees have crossed the Jordanian border to find safety in the Hashemite Kingdom. (INN)

POLAND SLAPS OBAMA’S ‘IGNORANCE’ FOR POLISH DEATH CAMP REMARK: Poland has taken deep offense at what it called President Barack Obama’s “ignorance and incompetence” for referring to a “Polish death camp.” The incident is one of a string of previous White House insults to Poland.  During a ceremony in which he awarded the Medal of Freedom to 13 people, the president cited the late Polish resistance fighter Jan Karski, who died in 2000. Obama referred to the resistance fighter’s trip across enemy lines to validate reports that Jews were being murdered on a massive scale in a “Polish death camp.” Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski fired off an angry complaint that the president should have called it a “German death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.” The White House hurriedly issued an apology and assured that the president has repeatedly discussed the bravery of Poles during World War II. According to one commentator, the president’s use of the term "Polish death camp" is hugely insulting to the Polish people. He added that for a US administration that boasts of smart power, this was an act of staggering historical ignorance as well as crass insensitivity. (INN)

FOR THE FIRST TIME, ISRAEL TO RECOGNIZE REFORM AND CONSERVATIVE RABBIS: In an unprecedented move, Israel has announced that it is prepared to recognize Reform and Conservative community leaders as rabbis and to fund their salaries. Rabbis belonging to either stream will be classified as "rabbis of non-Orthodox communities." The attorney general advised the High Court that the state will begin equally financing non-Orthodox rabbis in regional councils and farming communities that are interested in doing so. Rabbi Rick Jacobs, the President of the Union of Reform Judaism - North America’s largest Jewish movement - has hailed Tuesday’s decision to institute state funding for Reform rabbis. He described it as “a new era” in the relations between Israel and the Reform Movement. (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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