Israel Update

January 9, 2013

“Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other.” Isa 45:22

SENATOR GRAHAM SLAMS HAGEL APPOINTMENT: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Sunday that “Chuck Hagel would be the most antagonistic Secretary of Defense toward the state of Israel in our nation’s history. Graham called the former Republican Senator an “in-your-face” choice on the part of US President Barack Obama, and someone who is out of the mainstream of thinking on foreign policy issues. “Not only has he said you should directly negotiate with Iran, sanctions won’t work, that Israel should directly negotiate with Hamas, a terrorist group that lobs thousands of rockets into Israel, he also was one of 12 senators who refused to sign a letter to the EU that Hizbullah should be designated as a terrorist organization,” said Graham. Israel’s, Amnon Lord, a leading political commentator said the appointing of Chuck Hagel as US Secretary of Defense would leave Israel to face Iran on its own. Speaking of Iran: Iran's Foreign Ministry commented this week that Hagel as US defense secretary is fine with them and could even “improve relations between Iran and the US.” Hagel meanwhile is maintaining - according to widespread media reports - there’s "not one shred of evidence I'm anti-Israeli, not one Senate vote that matters that hurt Israel." (INN/Ynet)

IRAN OIL EXPORTS DECLINED BY 40% DUE TO SANCTIONS: Iran's oil exports have declined by 40% due to intensifying Western sanctions implemented over Tehran's illicit nuclear program, Iranian oil minister Rostam Qasemi said Monday. In 2011, the Islamic Republic relied on approximately $100 billion brought in by oil exports to cover 60% of its budget. Over the last 9 months "there has been a 40% decline in oil sales and a 45% decrease in repatriating oil earnings," Qasemi admitted. He previously had insisted Western economic pressure was not significantly impeding Iran's crude exports. Iran, once the second-biggest crude exporter in OPEC after Saudi Arabia, has slipped to fourth place, now trailing Iraq and Kuwait as well. (J.Post/AP)

UN CHIEF: ASSAD HAS NO REAL PLAN TO END SUFFERING: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Monday that Syrian President Bashar Assad's rejection of the most important elements in an international roadmap to end the country's civil war means Assad has no real plan to end Syrians' "terrible suffering." Assad dismissed any chance of dialogue with the armed opposition in a speech the previous day and called on Syrians to fight what he called "murderous criminals" responsible for the violence that has killed over 60,000 people. US State Department’s Victoria Nuland said Assad’s speech "is yet another attempt by the regime to cling to power and does nothing to advance the Syrian people's goal of a political transition. His initiative is detached from reality," she said. Is it any surprise, however, that Iranian officials again threw their support to the Syrian President on Tuesday, praising the so called “peace plans” the embattled Assad laid out in his televised speech on Sunday? (Ynet)

HAMAS, PA LEADERS REFUSE TO ASSIST AFFLICTED SYRIAN BRETHREN: Palestinian leaders, who court international sympathy by portraying their people as displaced victims of Israel, are refusing to help tens of thousands of their brethren who have been displaced from homes and refugee camps as a result of the civil war plaguing the neighboring country of Syria. Leaders of both Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have rebuffed requests by the UN Relief and Works Agency's (UNRWA) for assistance in stemming the humanitarian crisis in Syria, rendering 150,000 Syrian citizens, claiming “Palestinian” origins, homeless and “facing freezing temperatures, missiles, bombs and food shortages,” as Paul Alster of Fox News reports. Hamas PM Ismael Haniyeh believes seeking refuge for Palestinians trapped in Syria could undermine his argument for a “Palestinian right of return” to what they deem “occupied Palestine,” or more accurately the Jewish homeland in the State of Israel. The same rationale from Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian Authority also likely contributes to an unwillingness to aid fellow Palestinians. Israel, on the other hand, has offered to send humanitarian aid to the Syrian people, but has, thus far, been refused. (INN)

ABBAS SAYS MUFTI IS HIS HERO: PA chief Mahmoud Abbas spoke glowingly last Friday of the “legacy” of the infamous Hajj Amin al-Husseini, who was a collaborator with the Nazis, and was prepared to conduct the mass murder of the Jews of the Land of Israel in the event of a Nazi invasion. The Mufti, Abbas said, was a great man whose ways should be emulated by all PA Arabs. The Mufti was also the antecedent of Fatah, of which Abbas is currently chairman. After the Mufti was forced by the British to leave Mandatory Palestine, he took up residence in Europe, and met Hitler in Italy. The two agreed Hitler would murder the Jews of Europe, and that he, the Mufti, would organize the murder of the Jews of the Middle East. During the war, the Mufti broadcast pro-Nazi propaganda in Arabic. Later he reached Cairo, where he was one of the founders of the Arab League, which adopted the pact between the Mufti and Hitler as a basic document of the organization. (Arutz-7)

WIFE OF HAMAS POLITICIAN: WE MUST TEACH OUR CHILDREN TO DIE: The wife of a Hamas member of the Palestinian parliament recently demonstrated the stark difference between the dominant values in Israeli Jewish society and those that have sadly taken hold in much of Palestinian society. In a December 2 interview with Al-Aqsa TV, Umm Osama, wife of Hamas lawmaker Khalil Al-Hayya, stated that a woman's role is no less important than a man's in "Palestine" because it is the mother who "instills in her children the love of Jihad and martyrdom for the sake of Allah. I am constantly praying: 'Allah, make the end of our days be in martyrdom.' I pray for this even for my husband and my children. None of us want to die in our beds." (MEMRI/Israel Today) Pray for G-d’s mercy and deliverance to come to the children being raised in the midst of such tragic and appalling deception.

EGYPT’S MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD INFILTRATED OBAMA ADMINISTRATION: An Egyptian magazine has claimed six American Islamist activists who work with the Obama administration are Muslim Brotherhood operatives who enjoy strong influence over US policy. The December 22 story was published in Egypt's Rose El-Youssef magazine and was translated into English for the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT). The story suggests the six turned the White House "from a position hostile to Islamic groups and organizations in the world to the largest and most important supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood." The six named people include: Arif Alikhan, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for policy development; Mohammed Elibiary, a member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council; Rashad Hussain, the US special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference; Salam al-Marayati, co-founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC); Imam Mohamed Magid, president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA); and Eboo Patel, a member of President Obama's Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships. (Arutz-7)

WINTER IN ISRAEL TO BE WETTEST IN YEARS, CHANCE OF SNOW THIS WEEK: Israel's meteorological service says this winter will be the wettest in the past decade. With temperatures expected to plunge in coming days, much of the country could see snow this week. High winds and heavy rainfall lashed Israel on Monday, downing powerlines and trees and causing several minor injuries. Winds were reported to be gusting at speeds of up to 74 miles per hour and neighborhoods across Jerusalem felt the effects. Trees were toppled at the Temple Mount and branches were strewn in streets across the city while electricity outages were reported throughout the country. The Water Authority reported Monday morning that the level of the Sea of Galilee had risen almost four inches in 24 hours. The combination of wet weather and cold temperatures is the perfect recipe for snowfall, which forecasters say is likely to hit the country in a big way Wednesday night and Thursday. Accumulations are expected in many parts of the country, including Jerusalem. The Jerusalem municipality has entered a “snow emergency readiness,” preparing dozens of plows to keep main arteries open. (Arutz-7) The abundant outpouring of precipitation in Israel, following several years of drought, is truly an answer to many prayers and a cause for great thanksgiving. Continue to pray, however, that accidents, injuries and suffering due to winter conditions will be mercifully minimized. Pray for care, shelter and heating provisions for the poor, the elderly and homeless.

ISRAELIS TO DESIGN SAN DIEGO AREA DESALINATION PLANT: The Israeli desalination giant that is responsible for the brunt of Israel’s salty-to-fresh water transformation is now taking on San Diego, in the biggest desalination project to hit the western hemisphere. IDE Americas Inc., a subsidiary of Israel’s IDE Technologies Ltd, will be designing a 204,412-cubic-meter seawater desalination plant for the San Diego region, the company announced Sunday. “The Carlsbad Desalination Project is a significant milestone for us, California and the US at large, as we believe it will set the stage for the future of desalination in America,” said Avshalom Felber, CEO of IDE Technologies Ltd. “We’re excited to be a part of what will be the largest desalination plant in the US.” (J.Post) “In you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Gen 12:3

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 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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