Israel Update

July 3, 2012

“As surely as the sun rises, he will appear. He will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth.” Hosea 6:3

FORMER PRIME MINISTER YITZCHAK SHAMIR PASSES AWAY: Yitzchak Shamir, Israel's seventh Prime Minister, has passed away at the age of 96. Born in 1915 in Belarus, Shamir passed away on Shabbat. His funeral is expected to take place on Monday. In a statement, PM Binyamin Netanyahi said Shamir was “a member of the generation of giants that established the State of Israel and fought for the freedom of the Jewish people in its land. As Prime Minister, Yitzchak Shamir acted to ensure the security of the State of Israel and its future, and was a sterling example of faithfulness to the future of the Jewish people.” (Arutz-7)

TWO ARAB ARSONISTS ARRESTED IN JERUSALEM BLAZES: Two Arab youths from the village of Issawiya in eastern Jerusalem were arrested Thursday and charged with arson, for setting several fires in the area of their village. One fire was set next to an IDF base on Mount Scopus, and the other was set next to Hadassah Hospital on Mount Scopus. One of the youths confessed, incriminating his partner in crime. Twelve soldiers were injured in the fire at the base, requiring treatment for smoke inhalation. But the two fires were among the smaller of dozens of blazes that hit Jerusalem and other parts of Israel this week, with the largest being two major fires in the hills west of Jerusalem Tuesday. Some 300 homes were evacuated, and hundreds of dunams of natural forest growth were destroyed or damaged in the fire. Many Israelis believe the fires Jerusalem has experienced this month – one estimate said some 300 small and large fires were reported in Jerusalem and vicinity – were the work of Arab terrorists. Minister of Internal Security Yitzchak Aharonovitch said the massive fire Tuesday was likely the result of arson motivated by Arab nationalism. Police have already arrested suspects, he said, “some for their nationalism, some for their criminal background.” Police term such arson attacks “spontaneous terrorism,” he continued. “You don’t need an organization to set a forest on fire.” (Arutz-7) Continue to pray against arson attacks in Jerusalem and surrounding areas, also in other parts of the country.

IDF BOLSTERING DEFENSES ALONG SYRIAN BORDER: The IDF is bolstering defenses along the Syrian border due to concern that terrorist groups are planning a cross-border attack in the Golan Heights, Brig.-General, Tamir Hyman, said Thursday. "Our assumption is a terror attack or a war can happen without warning." He continued that Israel’s military was presently preparing accordingly. Israel's concerns when it comes to Syria include the option that the country's advanced weaponry - like Scud missiles and chemical weapons - will fall into rogue hands as well as the possibility that Global Jihad elements operating in the country will try to attack Israel along the border. "The government's loss of control and the instability is a convenient area of operations for Global Jihad elements in Syria," Hyman said. The IDF is also bracing for the possibility that large numbers of Syrian citizens will rush the border to try and flee the Syrian military's violent crackdown. The IDF has readied a number of areas along the border where it plans to contain the civilians in such a case and protect them from Syrian military forces if needed. (J.Post) Pray for the security of Israel’s borders, especially those at the southern and northern edges of the country. Communities in these are areas are most at risk from projectiles launched by terrorist groups and violence resulting from political upheavals in Syria.

SYRIAN TANKS GATHER ON TURKISH BORDER: The Syrian army has gathered roughly 170 tanks near the Turkish border. Syrian insurgents told international media on Friday that forces are gathering north of Aleppo. “They're either preparing to move to the border to counter the Turkish deployment or attack the rebellious Syrian towns and villages in and around the border zone north of Aleppo,” General Mustafa al-Sheikh told news sources. Al-Sheikh is head of the Higher Military Council, a group of senior officers who defected from the Syrian army. On Tuesday, Turkish media reported that Turkey had deployed a large number of military vehicles to its border with Syria. The move followed Syria’s shooting of a Turkish jet in international airspace last week. (Reuters) Pray Syrian aggression and upheavals will not spill into neighboring nations touching off a major war in the region. Syria is a boiling pot!

ISRAEL CONVINCES RUSSIA TO CANCEL SYRIAN S-300 DEAL: Israel likely played a major role in influencing Russia to cancel its planned sale of the S-300 surface-to-air missile system to Syria. The decision to revoke the deal was likely an outcome of President’s Vladimir Putin’s visit to Israel last Monday, during which PM Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres discussed events in Syrian at great length with the Russian President. "Putin listened perfectly to what we said," Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Army Radio, asserting the 100-million dollar deal's suspension was the outcome of talks between Russian and Israeli officials. The S-300 is one of the most advanced multi-target anti aircraft missile systems in the world, with an ability to track up to 100 targets simultaneously while engaging up to 12 at the same time. (INN)

IRAN’S VICE PRESIDENT MAKES ANTISEMITIC SPEECH: Iran's vice president Mohammad-Reza Rahimi delivered a baldly antisemitic speech last week at an international anti-drug conference in Tehran. He said the Talmud, a central text of Judaism, was responsible for the spread of illegal drugs around the world. European diplomats in attendance expressed shock. Rahimi told stories of gynecologists' killing black babies on the orders of the Zionists and claimed the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917 was started by Jews, adding that mysteriously no Jews died in that uprising. He also said the Talmud teaches Jews to think they are a superior race. A European diplomat said afterward: "This was definitely one of the worst speeches I have heard in my life. My gut reaction was, why are we supporting any cooperation with these people? Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Rahimi's outburst was further evidence of a growing antisemitic tide that the world must not ignore. A spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, "The Secretary-General has on many occasions called on Iranian officials to refrain from these kinds of antisemitic statements. He does so again in response to these latest comments. He deeply regrets expressions of hatred and religious intolerance." UN Policy Chief Catherine Ashton also condemned the racist remarks made by Rahimi (N.Y. Times/Israel Today/INN) “The ruthless will vanish, the mockers will disappear, and all who have an eye for evil will be cut down.” Isa 29:20

NEW EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT, MORSI, IS ISRAEL’S WORSE NIGHTMARE: Ben Caspit, one of Israel's most prominent and influential columnists, wrote last week that the Jewish state has reached the moment feared by generations of Israeli intelligence and security chiefs. Caspit noted that the ultimate nightmare scenario is playing out before Israel, it began the moment Egypt fell into the hands of the Muslim Brotherhood. “All this transpires in the largest Arab country, Israel's major strategic peace partner, the regional anchor,” he said. “Now, instead of a regional power that hates the Hamas terrorist group, a sister-state to Hamas sits on our southern border. The Muslim Brotherhood views Hamas as colleagues.” (Al Monitor)

EJP OUTRAGED OVER GERMAN CIRCUMCISION RULING: The European Jewish Parliament (EJP) expressed its outrage on Thursday over a ruling of the German District Court of Cologne, which states the circumcision of a child for religious reasons should be considered a physical assault. The court ruled that non-medical circumcision, practiced by most Jews and Muslims, causes bodily harm and therefore is a crime. The EJP said it firmly condemns this unacceptable interference in the prerogatives of religious communities and the argument that circumcision goes against the interests of a child to decide for himself later on to what religion he wishes to belong. The EJP stressed that circumcision of male newborns, practiced in all Jewish communities for millennia, is a rite that goes to the very core of Judaism. The EJP expects the Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe to nullify the court decision, which otherwise would set a precedent and permanently deprive parents of their basic rights regarding freedom of religion. (Arutz-7) Pray this ruling against circumcision will indeed be cancelled.

NEW NATIONAL SERVICE LAW WILL APPLY TO ALL – INCLUDING ARABS: Israel’s PM Netanyahu said Thursday he would only support a law over IDF enlistment and national service if it applies to every Israeli citizen, including Israel's Arab population and the ultra-Orthodox. He was responding to news on Thursday that the Plesner Committee, tasked with drafting a replacement for the Tal Law that exempts yeshiva students from mandatory military service, will recommend that every Israeli citizen who is not capable of carrying out military responsibilities should carry out civil service, but that this should be only implemented gradually. (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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