Israel Update

January 28, 2013

“The Lord will extend your mighty scepter from Zion; you will rule in the midst of your enemies.” Ps 110:2

ASSAD: "I WILL WIN EVEN IF DAMASCUS IS DESTROYED": Citing French sources, Asharq Al-Awsat, days ago quoted an exchange between Syrian President Assad and the international envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi. According to the report, Brahimi told Assad he could not remain in power and that the opposition could defeat him, but the cost may be the complete destruction of Damascus. To that, Assad reportedly answered: "I will win the war, even if Damascus is destroyed." French FM Laurent Fabius said Thursday there was no sign the Syrian crisis was going to be resolved soon, in contrast to his prediction last month that the end was near for Assad. "Things are not moving. The solution we had hoped for, and by that I mean the fall of Bashar and the arrival of the coalition to power, has not happened." (Times of Israel)

BRITISH MP: JEWS DIDN’T LEARN THE LESSON FROM THE HOLOCAUST: A Liberal Democrat MP in Britain faces expulsion from the party for saying Jews had not learned from the murder of six million in the Holocaust in their treatment of Palestinian Authority Arabs. David Ward, MP for Bradford East, wrote on his own website that he was “saddened” Jews “could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians…on a daily basis.” He later defended his comments in interviews, saying they were “a statement of fact,” and adding “it appears the suffering by the Jews has not transformed their views on how others should be treated.” His remarks were made ahead of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Friday. He has been summoned to a meeting with party whips on Monday, but has insisted he stood by the statement and its timing and claimed it was “regrettable” he had been reprimanded. A Liberal Democrat spokesman said, according to the report, “This is a matter we take extremely seriously. The Liberal Democrats deeply regret and condemn the statement issued by David Ward and his use of language which is unacceptable.” (Arutz-7) Lack of knowledge and sensitivity having been exposed - may expulsion indeed drive home the message to David Ward that he has made a grave error in his antisemitic thinking and public statements.

NETANYAHU HOLDS TALKS WITH YESH ATID LEADERS: PM Benjamin Netanyahu has offered Yesh Atid Chairman Yair Lapid a choice between the foreign affairs or finance portfolios. The two met at the prime minister's residence on Thursday away from the public eye in a meeting that kicked off the coalition negotiations. Sources close to Netanyahu and Lapid said that the Yesh Atid chairman was also offered the defense portfolio but that he has no interest in it. Lapid is being pressured not to take the finance portfolio in light of the current economic situation and the deep budget deficit, sources said. Formal negotiations on a new government can begin only after President Shimon Peres meets in the next few days with the various party leaders and hears their recommendations for the best candidate to form the new government. Tuesday’s elections, giving Netanyahu’s Likud-Beytenu 31 seats, mean he is certain to be the favored choice. Lapid’s 19 seats make him a prime potential coalition partner. Both leaders have expressed a desire to see a broad coalition lead the country in the coming years. On Wednesday, Lapid said he would not join a blocking majority, as urged by left-wing party leaders, to prevent the prime minister from forming a government. His comment virtually guaranteed that Netanyahu will continue as prime minister. (Times of Israel) Continue to pray PM Netanyahu will be able to form a strong coalition government. May G-d’s chosen leaders be at the helm of the Jewish State.

ISRAEL AT UN: MALI THREATENS FRANCE? GAZA’S IN OUR LIVING ROOM: As the world begins to lend international support to a French-led military intervention against Islamic terrorists in Mali, Israel’s ambassador to the UN on Wednesday brought the issue home, comparing the situation in northern Africa to Israel’s fight against terrorism in Gaza. “France’s foreign minister said this month his country was fighting to prevent the creation of an Islamist terrorist enclave ‘at the doorstep of France and Europe.’ If Mali is on France’s doorstep, Gaza is in Israel’s living room,” Ron Prosor said. Speaking at the UN Security Council the Israeli Ambassador to the UN added, “Make no mistakes: France’s principled stand should be commended. We only ask that France and all the countries that are supporting its principled stand today, support Israel tomorrow when we fight Islamic terrorism on our borders.” France launched a military operation in Mali on January 11th to oust Islamist terrorists who were threatening to capture the capital and take over the country. The international community quickly lent support to France, who has vowed the operation will last "as long as necessary." Such overwhelming Western backing for France's anti-terror military incursion into Mali reveals a clear double standard when it comes to the Jewish state's security. (INN/Israel Today)

PROSER TO UN: JEWISH HOMES IN JERUSALEM NO THREAT TO REGIONAL SECURITY: Israel’s ambassador to the UN, on Wednesday, condemned the UN Security Council for quickly attacking Israel for building in Judea and Samaria while doing little to stop the real pressing threats to the stability of the region. "In Syria, more than 60 thousand people have been killed, Assad bombed Palestinian refugee camps and hundreds of thousands are seeking refuge, citizens in Lebanon are living under the brutal oppression of Hizbullah, which has transformed the southern part of the country into an Iranian terror base, Assad's chemical weapons might fall into the hands of Hizbullah or al-Qaeda. Iran is striving to obtain nuclear weapons," said Prosor. "Yet despite the many threats, the Security Council chooses to focus every month specifically on Israel. The presence of Jewish homes in Jerusalem has never been a threat to regional security. Israel is not that which is broken in the Middle East, Israel is everything that is good and true in the Middle East. The Council's silence in the face of terrorism, corruption, lies and half-truths does not contribute to those seeking a brighter future," Prosor added. Prosor also expressed the Israeli government’s view that the upgraded status attained by the Palestinian Authority in a November vote at the UN has no tangible meaning. The US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice agreed with Prosor. (Arutz-7)

US OBJECTS TO “STATE OF PALESTINE” PLACECARD IN UN: America’s ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, objected Wednesday when the Palestinian foreign minister spoke at the Security Council while seated behind a nameplate that read "State of Palestine." Rice said the US does not recognize the General Assembly vote in November as bestowing Palestinian statehood or recognition. "Only direct negotiations to settle final status issues will lead to this outcome," Rice said. "Therefore, in our view, any reference to the 'State of Palestine' in the United Nations, including the use of the term 'State of Palestine' on the placard in the Security Council or the use of the term 'State of Palestine' in the invitation to this meeting does not reflect acquiescence that 'Palestine' is a state." Canadian Ambassador, Guillermo Rishchynski, also complained that allowing the Palestinians to sit behind the "State of Palestine" nameplate "creates a misleading impression" and said Canada would oppose the Palestinians' attempts to upgrade their status in symbolic ways. (AP)

TOURISM TAKES HIT DUE TO GAZA ROCKETS: Tourism was down in December 2012 with 609,000 overnight stays by overseas visitors, 14% less than the year before. The most serious drop was in Tel Aviv, where tourism was down by 25%. Second was the Dead Sea with a 22% drop. Tourist officials blamed the rocket attacks from Gaza in November. The attacks, which targeted Tel Aviv, central Israel and Jerusalem as well as southern Israel, drove away foreign visitors, they said. (Arutz-7)

TAU RESEARCH TEAM DISCOVERS NEW TREATMENT FOR STROKE: A doctor at Tel Aviv University has come up with a new treatment for stroke and other issues that can restore significant neurological function even years after the initial event. Dr. Shai Efrati theorized that high levels of oxygen could reinvigorate dormant neurons in brain tissue chronically damaged by stroke, traumatic brain injury and metabolic disorder. The conditions are major causes of brain damage and permanent disabilities such as motor dysfunction, psychological problems, memory loss, outright dementia and more. He and colleague Prof. Eshel Ben-Jacob recruited 74 post-stroke patients, 6 to 36 months after the injury. Treatment of the volunteers involved 40 two-hour sessions five times a week in a high pressure chamber that contains oxygen-rich air which increases oxygen levels in the body ten-fold. The findings of Efrati’s studyshowed significantly increased neuronal activity after a group of affected patients received two months of hyperbaric treatment, compared to a group that received none, he said. The study “opens the gate into a new territory of treatment,” said Efrati. (Arutz-7)

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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