Israel Update

October 31, 2012

“We wait in hope for the Lord. He is our help and our shield.” Ps 33: 20

HURRICANE SANDY LEAVES DOZENS DEAD, NYC BEGINS RECOVERY: Residents of the areas pummeled by super-storm Sandy began to look towards rebuilding efforts Wednesday, though many remain without power, neighborhoods remain strewn with debris and many transportation systems remain closed. As of late Tuesday at least 55 people had been reported dead as a result of the storm, which one economic firm predicted caused up $20 billion in damage. New York City buses resumed their schedule and the New York Stock Exchange prepared to reopen its trading floor Wednesday, but it became clear that restoring the region to some semblance of normalcy could take days or considerably longer for communities that were the hardest hit. "We will get through the days ahead by doing what we always do in tough times - by standing together, shoulder to shoulder, ready to help a neighbor, comfort a stranger and get the city we love back on its feet," NY City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday. (Arutz-7/Fox) Pray for all the victims and those who have suffered physical or property damages due to Hurricane Sandy including in the Caribbean. Vision for Israel staff members extend deep condolences to friends who may have suffered loss in this catastrophic storm. Our prayers are joined with those of many concerned loved ones and friends for your comfort and speedy restoration.

25,000 ISRAELI STUDENTS PRAY FOR THOSE IN SANDY’S PATH: Israeli students prayed for the US on Tuesday as Hurricane Sandy hit America’s east coast, killing dozens and causing an estimated $20 billion in damage. Students read Psalms as prayers for those affected by the storm in each of the 100 schools affiliated with the AMIT educational network. AMIT director Dr. Amnon Eldar explained that for many students, the prayers were a way of giving back to those who have helped them. “We have 25,000 students,” he said. “Many of them are in Sderot, Ashkelon, and Be’er Sheva, and when they are in danger from rocket attacks, American Jews pray for them, support them, and come to visit. They help and contribute, because they are our brothers, our flesh and blood. Most citizens of the US are good friends to the state of Israel, and when they are in trouble, we feel a real need to pray for them,” he explained. (Arutz-7)

SENIOR IDF OFFICER: CHANCES OF CONFLICT ARE GROWING: The chances of a "narrow or wide" armed conflict involving the IDF have grown recently, the army's head of the Technology and Logistics Branch told officers this week. Maj.-Gen. Kobi Barak said his task was to "look 20 years into the future to ensure that our logistical concepts are compatible with the developing battlefield." He warned the global economic crisis could have a negative effect on the IDF's budget. Barak was addressing officers in northern Israel who were promoted to the rank of lieutenant-colonel. Deputy Chief of Staff Maj.-Gen. Yair Naveh also warned new officers that for the first time in years, Israel must be ready for unexpected security developments on multiple fronts. "We will have to be flexible and responsible in following the changes in the entire area.” Addressing the Iranian threat, Naveh said, "In the East, leaders are making threats without shame on every stage, expressing their desire to destroy Israel. On the Gaza border, we are in a continuous combat situation with terror organizations." He added that southern residents regularly come under fire as part of the same conflict, "due to hatred of Israel alone." (J.Post) “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Ps 27:1

AYALON: REGIONAL INSTABILITY COULD LAST A GENERATION: Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon predicted Monday that regional instability could continue for one generation, saying it would not surprise him if the Arab world splits into 30 separate states in the near future. The Arab League currently consists of 22 members from across the Middle East and North Africa, including Syria, which was suspended in November 2011, and the Palestinian Authority. “When we talk about the so-called Middle Eastern Spring, we are seeing something that is very similar to what happened in the Soviet Union,” Ayalon said. “A dictatorial regime, a police state, suppresses all inner conflicts in the society. But when the strong regime falls, everything comes out.” He continued: “You have to remember that aside from Egypt, all the Arab countries are artificial. They were created by two European gentlemen, Sykes and Picot, British and French, who divided up areas of influence on the ruins of the Ottoman Empire - irrespective of nationalities, tribes and other geopolitical factors.” (J.Post)

EX-GENERAL: IS ISRAEL WAITING FOR JEWISH BLOOD? The Israeli government will not take real action against Gaza terrorists’ rocket attacks until Jewish blood is shed, says former IDF Brigadier-General Tzvika Fogel. Experience shows the leadership responds sharply to rocket attacks only when a Jew is badly wounded or killed, he explained. Attacks in which there are no serious injuries are not met with a similar response. The standard response to attacks that do not cause injury is an IAF strike on a weapons plant or smuggling tunnel in Gaza. The current approach must change if Israel is to restore deterrence, he declared. “Every rocket that is fired must be met with a response where either a Hamas leader loses his head, or the street the rocket was fired from is taken out,” he said. “There’s no other way.” In southern Israel, he noted, there are 12 and 13-year-old children who have grown up with rocket fire as a part of their daily reality. “It’s not normal that children live that way in the state of Israel,” Fogel said. (INN)

SECURITY FORCES ARREST 30 MEN FOR TRYING TO ESTABLISH HAMAS BRANCH IN RAMALLAH: Israel’s security service, Shin Bet, has arrested 30 Palestinians in the Ramallah area over the past few months on suspicion of working to rebuild the local infrastructure of the Islamist terror group, Hamas, according to a statement issued Monday. Hamas won legislative elections in the so called West Bank and Gaza in 2006 and took full control of Gaza a year later following violent clashes with terrorist group, Fatah, with whom it had shared an unstable unity government. Its rival, the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, maintains control over the Ramallah region. Israeli security officials said those arrested were members of a “field command” responsible for strengthening Hamas’s presence in some West Bank universities. The IDF’s West Bank prosecutor charged the suspects with a number of crimes at the Judea Military Court. All of those involved were remanded to police custody until the end of the proceedings. (J.Post/NY Times) Hamas and Hamas-connected terrorist groups in the Gaza Strip are responsible for the ongoing rocket fire at Israel’s Negev communities. Pray jihadist organizations that are continually promoting hatred and violence against the Jewish state will be unable to gain further footholds in Israel’s disputed territories.

FATAH FACEBOOK SHOWS PALESTINIAN MOTHER PLACING SUICIDE BELT ON HER CHILD: The Facebook page for Fatah in Lebanon recently posted a picture of a mother dressing her young son with a suicide belt. The accompanying text reads: "My mother dressed me in a strange belt (i.e., a suicide belt)." I asked her: "What is this, mother?" She said: "I will put it on you and you will go to your death!...The homeland needs you, son. Go and blow up the sons of Zion." (PMW)

AL-QAEDA FORMS ALL-FEMALE BRIGADE TO ATTACK WEST: Al-Qaeda has formed an all-female “Burkha Brigade” to infiltrate and hit Western military bases and targets, as they are less likely than men to attract suspicion. A film posted online shows the all-female unit of al-Qaeda using an alarming array of weapons, including machine-guns, grenade rocket launchers and sniper rifles during their training session at an unknown location. The report has raised concerns the global terror network has formed all-female units because they are less likely to attract suspicion than men and can more easily infiltrate security barriers. Women also remain less conspicuous as they often hide explosives beneath the abaya - the black cloak worn from head to toe. (INN)

ISRAEL, GREECE CONDUCT JOINT MILITARY EXERCISE: The Israeli Air Force and the Greek Air Force this week concluded a two-day joint exercise on Greek soil. The Greek Air Force said that as part of the exercise, fighter pilots from both armies practiced bomb raids and long term aerial refueling. As Israel's relations with Turkey cooled over the past few years – its relationship with Greece, including security cooperation, has warmed. Last year, Defense Minister Ehud Barak signed a security cooperation agreement with the Greek Defense Minister. The joint Israel-Greek exercise took place as Austere Challenge 12, the IDF's joint exercise with the US Army, got underway. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in Israel on Sunday to observe the drill. The following day, Dempsey held a meeting with President Shimon Peres. The two discussed a variety of topics, including the Iranian nuclear threat, the strengthening of strategic relations between the two countries and developments in the region. (Arutz-7)

240 ETHIOPIAN IMMIGRANTANTS ARRIVE IN ISRAEL: A planeload of 240 Ethiopian immigrants, half of them children, landed in Israel on Monday, in an inaugural flight commencing Israel's initiative to bring all remaining Falash Mura to the country, the Jewish Agency announced. The Falash Mura are Ethiopian Jews who were forcibly converted to Christianity or abandoned Jewish customs in the 19th and 20th centuries. "Together we are writing the last page of the history of Ethiopian Jewry. We are now bringing all of our brothers from Africa to Israel," said Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky. (Times of Israel) A planeload of 240 Ethiopian immigrants, half of them children, landed in Israel on Monday, in an inaugural flight commencing Israel's initiative to bring all remaining Falash Mura to the country, the Jewish Agency announced. The Falash Mura are Ethiopian Jews who were forcibly converted to Christianity or abandoned Jewish customs in the 19th and 20th centuries. "Together we are writing the last page of the history of Ethiopian Jewry. We are now bringing all of our brothers from Africa to Israel," said Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky. (Times of Israel)

Blessings from Jerusalem,

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 Storehouse?", 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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