Israel Update

March 10, 2013

“The God of my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation,
my stronghold and my refuge; my Savior, You save me from violence.” 2 Sam 22:3

NETANYAHU TO ANNOUNCE A MAJORITY COALITION BY NEXT WEEK: The Likud Beytenu is close to signing a coalition agreement with the Yesh Atid party, sources in both parties confirmed Friday. Yesh Atid chairman, Yair Lapid, has agreed to give up his demand to be appointed to the position of Foreign Minister, which PM Binyamin Netanyahu is saving for Yisrael Beytenu chairman, Avigdor Lieberman, until the end of his trial. Instead, Lapid will likely become finance minister in the next government. With Lapid taking the Finance Ministry, Bayit Yehudi leader, Naftali Bennett, is likely to be the Labor Trade and Industry Minister with expanded authority to fight the concentration of wealth, or possibly Interior Minister. It has also been agreed between the sides that Lapid and Bennett’s outline for hareidi enlistment will be the one implemented. The proposal will impose a quota on the number of yeshiva students who are exempt from army service. However, instead of 400 exemptions as Lapid had previously demanded, the quota will be extended to 1,500 to 2,000 students. An Israeli coalition is likely to be announced early next week. (Ha’aretz/INN) Pray Yesh Atid chairman, Yair Lapid, and Bayit Yehudi leader, Naftali Bennett, will be positioned in precisely the right government posts - those for which they are most experienced and knowledgeable to manage.

FRENCH PRESIDENT HOSTS SHIMON PERES, VOWS WORLD WILL STOP IRAN NUKE: French President Francois Hollande hosted Israel’s President Shimon Peres in Paris on Friday. Hollande stated the international community, and not Israel, must take responsibility for preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. "Iran is not a danger only to Israel, it is a danger to the Gulf states, to Europe and to the whole world," Holland said at a joint press conference with Peres. Peres warned that "the Iranians are playing a dangerous game and liable to lose the last chance the international community is giving them." Both leaders agreed sanctions on Iran are biting but need to be strengthened further. (J.Post/INN)

KERRY TO IRAN: DON’T PUSH THE LIMITS: US Secretary of State, John Kerry has warned that despite last week's negotiations in Almaty between the US, its allies and Iran, which he called "useful," the time for Iran to cooperate is running out. "If they keep pushing the limits and not coming with a serious set of proposals or prepared to actually resolve this, obviously the risks get higher and confrontation becomes more possible," Kerry warned. (Arutz-7)

UN: NUMBER OF SYRIAN REFUGEES REACHES ONE MILLION: The UN announced this week that the number of Syrian refugees who have fled the country since the conflict began has jumped since the beginning of the year and has now reached one million. Half of the refugees are children, most under the age of 11. Most have fled to or are seeking shelter in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt. "Syria is spiraling towards full-scale disaster," the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said in a statement this week. "This tragedy has to be stopped," he added. Meanwhile, insurgent fighters from Syria on Wednesday seized 21 Filipino UN peacekeepers who were patrolling the Golan Heights region between Syria and Israel. The Philippines said rebels who are holding the peacekeepers hostage are insisting Syrian troops leave the area before releasing their captives. A team of peacekeepers was sent Friday to bring back their colleagues, who are being held in a village near the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, said a spokeswoman for the UN Peacekeeping Department. Because of the late hour and darkness "it was considered unsafe to continue the operation" but efforts will resume Saturday, she said. (INN/Ynet) Pray for the safety of the captured UN peacekeepers and for their immediate release. Pray also there will be no further abductions by rebel forces or any other groups caught up in the Syrian conflict.

IDF: WE’RE READY FOR POSSIBLE HIZBULLAH CONFLICT: Wary of a spillover from the conflict in Syria, Israel is preparing to take on the Hizbullah terrorist militia that it suspects is getting advanced weapons from a war-distracted Damascus. Israel believes the Lebanese Shi'ite terrorists also stand ready to retaliate if it carries out long-threatened strikes on the nuclear sites of Iran, another Hizbullah patron. Hizbullah fought Israel's far more advanced forces to a standstill when they last came to blows, in 2006, and rained more than 4,000 rockets on northern Israel. A UN-monitored ceasefire has largely held since. But a senior IDF officer from the Lebanese front said Thursday that tensions in Syria "have the potential to spill over and trigger a confrontation" with Hizbullah. "We want to preserve the quiet, and we want the other side to know if they take a step that necessitates we exact a price, they will pay dearly," the officer told foreign reporters while overseeing a simulated battle with Hizbullah. Israel is on the verge of being drawn into the two-year Syrian insurgency. (J.Post) The highly volatile situation on Israel’s northern borders is in constant need of intercession. “The fervent effectual prayer of a righteous man avails much!” James 5:16

EXPERT: US DOING NO FAVORS IN GIVING ISRAEL SPECIAL ALLY STATUS: The US is not doing Israel any favors by granting it special status as a strategic ally, according to New York based strategy expert Mark Langfan. He predicts a domino effect in which other US allies in the region would collapse if Israel does. "Without Israel, Cyprus and Saudi Arabia are toast," Langfan said, "and they know it. Without Israel, oil would be $1,000 a barrel. Without Israel, the US would have to fund an extra $200 billion yearly defense budget to defend southern NATO countries from a Muslim caliphate's northward tsunami." Following reports of an AIPAC initiative to secure special "strategic ally" status for Israel, Middle East security analyst Langfan said, "Without Israel’s order of battle and very existence, it would be impossible for NATO to defend Greece, let alone Cyprus, from a Turkish/Muslim Brotherhood tidal wave which would lay waste to everything in the eastern Mediterranean. Whether NATO likes it or not, Israel is a now the heart and soul of NATO’s southeastern flank.” A Republican and a Democrat in the US House of Representatives earlier this week introduced legislation that would make Israel a "major strategic ally," a one of a kind designation. (INN)

US SENATE APPROVES BRENNAN AS NEW CIA DIRECTOR: The US Senate on Thursday confirmed John Brennan as the Obama administration's next director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The Senate voted 63-34 in favor of Brennan. One of the FBI’s former top experts on Islam announced last month that President Obama’s pick to head the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan, converted to Islam years ago in Saudi Arabia. Former FBI Islam expert John Guandolo has long cautioned that the federal government is being infiltrated by members of the radical Muslim Brotherhood. But Guandolo now warns that by appointing Brennan to CIA director, Obama has not only chosen a man “naïve” to these infiltrations, but also picked a candidate who is himself a Muslim. “Mr. Brennan did convert to Islam when he served in an official capacity on the behalf of the United States in Saudi Arabia,” said Guandolo. “The facts of the matter are confirmed by US government officials who were also in Saudi Arabia at the time that John Brennan was serving there and have direct knowledge. These men witnessed his conversion to Islam.” (Reuters/WND)

FIVE MILLION DUTCH HAVE A SATANIC VIEW OF ISRAEL: This week a major Dutch news site published an article by Israeli antisemitism expert Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld in which he wrote there are currently more people with neo-Nazi views in the Netherlands than the number of Dutch collaborators with the Nazis during the Second World War. Gerstenfeld wrote: “At least five million Dutch have a satanic view of Israel. This can be concluded from a study undertaken by the University of Bienenfeld for the German Social Democrat Friedrich Ebert Foundation. This study was ignored by the Netherlands. (Arutz-7)

ISRAEL TURNS BACK PLAGUE OF LOCUSTS - BUT MORE ON THE WAY: Israel’s spraying of agricultural fields in the south of the country Wednesday succeeded in turning the tide in a millions-strong locust invasion from across the Egyptian border. Two planes, assisted by ground crews and trucks, on Wednesday sprayed with pesticides the migrating insects that had settled in the area the day before. The teams sprayed a swath of 1,850 acres. “It’s like an insect cemetery down here,” a farmer in the area, told Army Radio. He said his tomato crops were unharmed, because they are protected under nylon covers. Potato crops in the area were badly damaged, though, he said. Southerly winds may blow a new swarm of locusts into the country over the weekend, farmers in Israel's Negev feared Thursday. The Agriculture Ministry placed area residents on high alert ahead of the possible influx of a huge swarm numbering millions of locusts. Rabbi Eliezer Simcha Weiss, rabbi of Emek Hefer, sent a letter to farmers calling for prayer as locusts begin to plague the region. Israelis must pray no more locusts reach the country, he said. (Times of Israel/INN) Pray for a miracle to avert a further locust invasion over the weekend in Israel.

WOMEN MAKE UP 34% OF THE IDF: Israel is the only country with mandatory military consignment of women, and as a result, 34% of the IDF is made up of servicewomen. 92% of IDF positions are available to women, and 57% of mandatory service IDF officers are females. 59% of the women in Israel are drafted into the IDF. (INN)

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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