Israel Update

JERUSALEM-ON-THE-LINE
April 28, 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 WAS IN CHOPPER WHEN UAV WAS SPOTTED: PM Binyamin Netanyahu was in a helicopter flight on the way to a tour of northern Israel, when the IAF spotted what was likely a Hizbullah UAV in the skies of Haifa Thursday. The prime minister's staff, in consultation with security elements, took no chances and instructed the helicopter pilot to land until the successful interception of the drone. The unmanned aerial vehicle penetrated Israeli air space from Lebanon and was over the Mediterranean Sea when the IAF Commander gave instructions to shoot it down. It was shot down 5 nautical miles away from Haifa's coast. "I view with utmost gravity this attempt to violate our border," Netanyahu said following the incident. Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon promised that Israel would retaliate for Thursday’s UAV incident, assumed to be a Hizbullah operation - the second of its kind within recent months. An attempted breach of Israeli airspace near Haifa, home to sensitive petrochemical plants that Hizbullah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, has threatened to target, is a serious provocation. Senior military officers have also voiced concern that up to 50 kilograms of explosives could be loaded onto a UAV which would serve as a precise rocket. The drone is only the most recent and visible aspect of a covert war raging between Iran and Hizbullah on one side, and Israel on the other. Hizbullah agents, together with Iranian Quds Force members, continue trying to attack Israeli civilians and state targets overseas. Further away, Iran’s nuclear centrifuges continue to spin. All of these arenas – Lebanon, Syria, Iran and Gaza are interlinked. Any miscalculated step can trigger a wider confrontation. On Friday's Lebanese sources said IDF troops along the Lebanese border were on high alert. The report added that IAF jets and helicopters had been witnessed flying over towns in southern Lebanon during the day. The Lebanese army also increased its presence along the Lebanon-Israel border on Friday. (J.Post/INN) Pray for protection over Israel’s skies as well as land borders. May the foes of Israel fear serious reprisals for ongoing threats and acts of aggression.

BOLTON: ISRAEL’S SITUATION WITH IRAN ‘VERY PERILOUS’: Speaking in an interview with media sources, former US ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, said that the situation with Iran “is very perilous” because the regime “is close to achieving its twenty year long objective of getting nuclear weapons. I don’t think the economic sanctions have slowed the program down at all and I think that unless the United States or Israel takes military action that Iran will get nuclear weapons,” Bolton said. “This is a very undesirable situation to be in and the choices are not good, he added. “We should have acted more forcefully 10 or more years ago,” he asserted, maintaining that if the US does not take military action, Israel will be forced with the very difficult decision of whether or not to do so. (INN)

YAALON: IRAN’S INVOLVED IN ALL THE CONFLICTS: Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon met this week with Chief of Staff of the Canadian Forces, General Thomas Lawson. During the meeting, Yaalon praised the strong friendship between Israel and Canada. “Israel and Canada have a relationship based on shared values and interests,” said Yaalon. “Canada is a true friend of Israel and an example of a country that manages policies based on values and moral clarity. It is important, in light of this, that we tighten our cooperation with an emphasis on the fight against terrorism,” he added. “Infighting on the future and identity of neighboring countries, between extremist Islamic movements is going on in the Middle East today."  Ya'alon emphasized that "the Iranian regime is involved in all the conflicts. It deploys its branches through the al-Quds forces in different areas in the world and tries to export the Iranian revolution to countries in the region and beyond. In this context it is important to stop the Iranian nuclear program in one way or another," emphasized Yaalon. "Presently, the diplomatic channel is not stopping the project, the economic sanctions still do not stop the centrifuges and a credible military option, with a willingness to carry it out is required." (INN) Additionally, Iran has long been a chief supporter of terrorist groups such as Hamas that regularly attacks Israel’s southern communities and Hizbullah with thousands of rockets and missiles aimed at every major city in the Jewish state. Iran provides these terrorist organizations with training, funds and munitions.

ISRAEL: IRANIAN NUKE PROGRAM AN ‘EXPRESS TRAIN’: Israel's UN Ambassador, Ron Prosor, warned Wednesday against the continued advancement of Iran's nuclear weapons program. Addressing a session of the Security Council, Prosor said Iran's nuclear arms program is "hurtling forward at the speed of an express train, while the international community's attempts to stop it are advancing at the rate of a local bus." He continued that as the centrifuges in Iran continue to spin the Iranian regime has the international spinning with lies and manipulations. Iran is the greatest threat to the region's stability," he stressed. The former Head of Military Intelligence, Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin, said Tuesday that "Iran has already crossed Israel's new red line" regarding nuclear weapons development. (Arutz-7)

REPORT: US PREPARING FOR AN ISRAELI STRIKE ON IRAN: The United States has stepped up contingency planning in case Israel launches a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities, the Wall Street Journal has disclosed. According to the report, US defense officials are becoming increasingly concerned that Israel is preparing to carry out such a strike. "Our concern is heightened," a senior US military official said. The US military is reportedly preparing for a range of possible responses to an Israeli strike on Iran, including attacks by pro-Iranian Shiite militias against the US Embassy in Iraq. The report said that, largely as a deterrent to Iran, the US has 15,000 soldiers in Kuwait and has moved a second aircraft carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf region. Additionally, the US has been pre-positioning aircraft and other military hardware and has accelerated arms transfers to US allies in the Persian Gulf region. Obama and PM Benjamin Netanyahu spoke by telephone on Thursday and General Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will visit Israel next week. (Ha’aretz)

GRAHAM ON IRAN: ‘VERY DANGEROUS TIME’: Sen. Lindsey Graham declared this week in a TV interview that the US could soon find itself in a very dangerous time with Iran. “How do you convince the Iranians you’re serious about stopping their nuclear weapons when, in Syria, Assad has slaughtered 70-80,000 people?” asked the South Carolina Republican, a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee. “We left Iraq without any troops and Iran has benefited from that vacuum. We’re really not serious about stopping their nuclear program,” Graham said. “And, if Iranian President Ahmadinejad does not change his course by summer, military force must be an option. The Iranians are going to get a nuclear weapon unless they change their direction. As we have negotiated and imposed sanctions, they’ve increased the amount of enriched uranium." (Newsmax)

US SENATORS CALL FOR ACTION IN SYRIA OVER USE OF CHEMICALS: US Senators said on Thursday it was time to intervene in Syria, after the United States said for the first time that Syria had likely used chemical weapons against rebel forces. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement that Syrian President Assad had "crossed a red line” and that the international community should act to ensure his fall. “The greatest humanitarian crisis in the world exists in and around Syria. It is clear that we must act to assure the fall of Assad. We must do everything possible to prevent the regime's use of chemical weapons and to ensure those stockpiles are secure." Senior US Senator John McCain gave a hawkish response to the intelligence assessment, insisting the US military should have already intervened in Syria. "I think it's pretty obvious that a red line has been crossed," McCain said. "We should have intervened long ago, whether Assad was using chemical weapons or not. He slaughtered 80,000 people while we sat by and watched. It's been one of the most shameful chapters in American history," he added. In Israel, Deputy Foreign Minister Ze'ev Elkin said, Friday morning, that if the US does not take action against Syria's chemical weapons, "the Iranians will conclude that red lines set by the West are very flexible and will continue to advance their nuclear program." (Arutz-7) Pray for the protection of all peoples endangered by the use of chemical weapons and that such arsenals of horror will be utterly eliminated in the region.

MKs DECRY US DEMAND TO FREE TERRORISTS AS GESTURE: After the Knesset discussed America's demand that Israel release terrorists as a good will gesture to the Palestinian Authority on Wednesday, Deputy Minister Ofir Akunis promised that there is no government decision to release the terrorists and that the government is against any such release. He called for the return to peace talks without pre-conditions, while emphasizing that Judea and Samaria is not conquered territory but the birthright of the Jewish nation. Knesset MK Orit Struk from the Bayit Yehudi party said, "The demand is shocking, not just because the peace talks must begin without preconditions, and not just because of the danger that these terrorists will return to terrorist activity once they are released, but because the release of terrorists is an energizing shot of encouragement to terror and terrorists. Every release like this," she continued, "causes potential terrorists to make the decision to become one, because they see that they will be given support." Struk added, "Is the America that is asking Israel to release terrorists the same America that has carried the flag in the struggle against terrorism and who recently experienced the hands of terror in their house?!" (INN) Pray Israel will stand firm against all pressures to release more terrorist murderers as so called “goodwill,” gestures to the Palestinian Authority – so many of who return to crimes of violence against the Jewish state when set free. Shame on US leaders for even making the suggestion….

BOSTON BOMBERS WERE HEADING TO NEW YORK TO ATTACK TIMES SQUARE: The brothers accused of staging the Boston Marathon bombings planned a new attack in Times Square as they were being hunted by police, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev confessed the plan to FBI agents in his hospital bed, Bloomberg said, calling it a "horrific reminder that we remain targets for terrorists.” The pair had a pressure cooker bomb - similar to the two that erupted at the marathon - as well as five other pipe bombs and improvised hand grenades as they drove around in the hijacked black Mercedes, according to police. The night finished with a policeman killed and another gravely wounded. Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed in one shootout with police while Dzhokhar, critically wounded, was found Friday hiding in a boat in a suburban backyard. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev had told investigators that the pair planned to go to New York "to party." Then in a second round of questioning Sunday evening into Monday morning he revealed they planned to use their remaining explosives there. The FBI told lawmakers this week that Tamerlan Tsarnaev sent text messages to his mother as early as 2011 suggesting he was willing to die for Islam. (AFP/CNN/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 http://www.visionforisrael.com/

 

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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