Israel Update

November 12, 2012

“The Lord is with me as a dread warrior; therefore my persecutors will stumble; they will not overcome me.” Jer 20:11

EGYPTIAN ISLAMISTS RALLY FOR SHARIA LAW: Over 10,000 ultraconservative Muslims demonstrated Friday in downtown Cairo to demand that Egypt's new constitution be based on the rulings of strict Islamic law, or Sharia, in the latest upheaval over the role of religion in the country's future. The writing of the constitution has been fraught with controversy since last year's political uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak and ushered in the rise of formerly outlawed Islamists to power. Islamists, Liberals and non-Islamists have been divided over what civic freedoms women, Christians and minority groups will be entitled to under a new constitution being drafted by an Islamist-dominated panel. Demonstrators in Tahrir Square demanded the committee tasked with writing the charter override liberal and secular objections and include language that could see religious scholars influencing legislation. The panel is led by the Muslim Brotherhood, the powerful Islamist group from which the country's new President Mohammed Morsi hails. (Ha’aretz/J.Post) Sharia is the legal code Muslims believe to be ordained by Allah for all mankind. According to followers of Islam, to violate Sharia or not to accept its authority is to commit rebellion against Allah, which Allah's followers are commanded to crush. The stoning of adulterers, execution of apostates and blasphemers, repression of women and other religions, and a mandatory hostility toward non-Islamic nations punctuated by regular warfare are all within the legal creeds of Sharia.

GAZAN ANTI-TANK MISSILE HITS IDF JEEP, INJURING FOUR: Palestinian terrorists in Gaza fired an anti-tank missile at an IDF jeep carrying out a routine patrol on the Israeli side of the border, striking the vehicle directly and injuring four soldiers on Saturday evening. One soldier is in serious condition with a head injury, one is moderately wounded, and two are lightly injured. Immediately afterwards, IDF tanks opened fire on the area from which the missile was fired. Palestinian sources said four people were killed in the return fire, and 25 others were injured. Islamic Jihad has claimed responsibility for the latest hit. The IDF views the incident as a severe escalation, and as part of a wider, stepped-up terrorist initiative to target its forces along the border. Defense Minister, Ehud Barak said Saturday night, "The IDF responded severely to the incident, and additional responses will be examined in the coming days. We will not accept the escalating attacks on the border." (J.Post) Pray for the safety of Israel’s southern borders and for IDF personnel patrolling these areas. Intercede for the full recovery of the IDF soldiers wounded in Saturday evening’s attack.

31 ROCKETS FIRED FROM GAZA SATURDAY NIGHT: Terrorists shot at least 31 rockets from Gaza into Israel late Saturday. Many residents in the region were warned not to go out into open areas throughout the night and to remain within 15 seconds of a bomb shelter. Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter commented on the escalation in the south saying the Jewish state "must reestablish its military deterrence in Gaza." He added: "Israel must rip the mask off Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' face, as he continues to shrug off any responsibility for the terror coming from Gaza." MK Yuli Edelstein responded to events unfolding in the South and the recent attack on IDF soldiers near the Gaza border by saying, "Hour zero has arrived. The State of Israel is only harming itself as it continues to abandon the lives of a million people. The time has come to send a major blow to the terrorist networks and to restore the quiet to the south." The mayor of Gan Yavne following rocket attacks in southern Israel called for schools to be closed on Sunday. (INN) Pray Israel’s government and military leaders will be given wisdom and strategy as to how to deal with ongoing Gaza Strip rocket attacks on the country’s southern region.

ISRAEL WARNS ASSAD OVER STRAY SYRIAN FIRE ON GOLAN: Israel warned Syrian President Bashar Assad on Friday to prevent his anti-insurgency sweeps from spilling over into Israel’s Golan Heights region, saying it was prepared to defend itself. The Golan, lost by Damascus in the 1967 Middle East war was repeatedly hit by stray Syrian fire last week. No one was hurt but nerves were jangled in Israel, which has tried to keep out of the conflict ravaging its old enemy next door. "We see the regime in Syria as responsible for what is happening along the border," Israeli Vice Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon said. Referring to the 19-month-old Syrian civil war, he warned: "If we see that it is spreading in our direction, we will know how to defend the citizens of the State of Israel and the State of Israel's sovereignty." (Reuters)

TWIN CAR-BOMBS KILL DOZENS OF ASSAD'S SOLDIERS IN SYRIA’S SOUTH: Twin suicide bombings shook a southern Syrian city on Saturday, killing at least 20 regime troops. The blasts in Daraa targeted an encampment for government forces in the city. The explosions were followed by clashes between regime forces and rebels fighting to topple President Bashar Assad. Its chief, Rami Abdul-Rahman, said at least 20 soldiers were killed in the blasts which also caused heavy material damage. Daraa was the birthplace of the uprising against Assad, which erupted in March 2011. The conflict began largely with peaceful protests against Assad's rule but turned bloody after rebels took up arms in response to the regime's crackdown. The crisis has since morphed into a vicious civil war. In recent months rebels have driven regime forces out of much of a pocket of northwestern Syria and are battling troops in several key cities and towns. (Ha’aretz)

UN OFFICIAL: 4 MILLION NEEDY IN SYRIA BY EARLY 2013: On Friday, senior UN official John Ging painted a bleak outlook for civilians caught up in intensifying civil war between Syrian government forces and rebels. "If the rate of conflict continues at the current pace we can reasonably project numbers in need to rise from 2.5 million to 4 million by the early new year," Ging told a news briefing. "Every day our humanitarian colleagues on the ground are engaging with people who are ever more desperate, ever more fearful for their lives because of this conflict," he said. Ging's comments followed Friday's report by a Turkish official that a rebel offensive along the border had enabled 8,000 Syrians to take refuge in Turkey within 24 hours. Rebels, who have driven Syrian President Bashar Assad's troops from much of northern Syria and taken several crossing points to Turkey, overran another frontier town late Thursday. Ten people were killed in clashes as opposition forces took Ras al-Ain, an Arab and Kurd town 375 miles from Damascus. "The crossing is important because it opens another line to Turkey, where we can send the wounded and get supplies," said a rebel commander. (J.Post)

HORROR IN SYRIA: CHRISTIANS BEING EXECUTED: Syria's opposition fighters are losing crucial support from a public increasingly disgusted by the actions of rebels, including poorly planned missions, senseless destruction, criminal behavior and the cold-blooded killing of prisoners. Reports from human rights groups in Syria disclose members of the Free Syrian Army have also started executing Christians while claiming they’re shooting Syrian soldiers. According to one human rights leader, “The Syrians rebels without a doubt are executing Christians. They are notorious for their tactical torture of their enemies.” He said rebel forces are sensing empowerment, which only fuels their hatred of Christians. “Now they are feeling empowered after what they saw in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. They feel this is their opportunity. They despise the Christians living in Syria and would love to kill them.” In part, the rebel missteps and brutalities have been compounded by changes in the opposition from a force of civilians and defected soldiers who took up arms after the government used lethal force on peaceful protesters to one that is increasingly seeded with extremist jihadists. Syrian rebel leaders have made it clear that should they gain control over Bashar Assad’s regime, Israel will still remain Syria’s number one foe. (WND) Continue to pray for the protection of Syria’s believing remnant. May they be comforted, encouraged and given places of shelter, hidden from all who would carry out violence against them.

ISRAEL SAYS IT WILL CLOSE CASH FLOW IF PALESTINIANS SEEK UN STATEHOOD: Israel will stop collecting tax revenues for the Palestinian Authority and not hand over any money if President Mahmoud Abbas continues to seek observer state membership of the UN, Israel's finance minister said Saturday. "If the Palestinians continue to advance their unilateral move they should not expect bilateral cooperation. We will not collect their taxes for them and we will not transfer their tax revenues," Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said. The Palestinian Authority on Wednesday circulated a draft resolution to UN member countries that calls for upgrading its UN standing to that of observer state, despite objections by the US and Israel. The Palestinians are currently considered an observer "entity" at the UN. Upgrading them to a non-member state, similar to the Vatican's UN status, would implicitly recognize Palestinian statehood. It could also grant them access to bodies such as the International Criminal Court in The Hague, where they could file complaints against the Jewish state. Israel and the US oppose the move, saying Palestinian statehood must be achieved by negotiation. They have called on Abbas to return to peace talks that collapsed in 2010. (Reuters)

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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