Israel Update

May 20, 2013

“The Lord also will roar from Zion, and utter His voice from Jerusalem. The heavens and earth will shake; but the Lord will be a shelter for His people, and the strength of the children of Israel.” Joel 3:16

SYRIAN ARMY AIMING MISSILES AT TEL AVIV: According to a Sunday UK press disclosure, the Syrian army has begun deploying advanced surface-to-surface missiles and has aimed them at Tel Aviv. Military leaders have received orders to strike central Israel in the event further assaults against Syria are carried out. The information was obtained by reconnaissance satellites tracking Syrian forces. According to the report, Syria was deploying advanced Tishreen missiles, which are capable of carrying a warhead of a half a ton. Syria’s Information Minister, Omran al-Zoubi, accused Israel Saturday of committing an aggression against Syria recently by raiding military sites near Damascus. With these acts, he said, Israel violated international commitments. "Accordingly, Syria has the right at this time and at any other time to deal with the Golan issue in the way the owner has the right to deal with his property, because the Golan is and has always been a Syrian Arab land," he said. PM Binyamin Netanyahu responded at Sunday's weekly cabinet meeting by affirming that "the Israeli government acts in a responsible, determined and measured manner to ensure the State of Israel's main interest, which is the security of its citizens." He said Israel’s policy is to stop, as much as possible, any leaks of advanced weaponry to Hizbullah and other terrorist organizations. "We will continue to act to ensure the security interests of the citizens of Israel," Natanyahu stressed. (J.Post/INN)

ISRAEL CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF SYRIAN CONFLICT: On Saturday, Syrian President Bashar Assad told an Argentinean newspaper that Israel is assisting the rebels fighting to topple his government. The Syrian opposition, meanwhile, has accused Israel of collaborating with Iran and Hizbullah to keep Assad in power. A commander in the rebel forces told a Turkish news agency that “Iran and Hizbullah are cooperating with Israel to be able to support Assad,” because the Syrian president “has protected Israel's border for 40 years.” Amos Gilad, head of the diplomatic-security branch of Israel’s Defense Ministry explained Sunday that the Assad regime is “systematically killing its people to survive.” He said Israel as a small state can’t influence the “terrible slaughter there,” adding that Assad’s forces have fired between 200- 300 missiles on its own population centers since the civil war broke out two years ago. Gilad also responded to a UK Sunday Times report which quoted a senior Israeli official as arguing it would be preferable for Assad to remain in power. “Military Intelligence didn’t say this,” he said. “Certainly, this is not our official stance. Our stance is that we take care of our security.” (J.Post) Syria is one of Israel’s most menacing foes. It is also Iran’s strongest ally. Syria and the Islamic Republic are the two leading supporters of global terrorist groups, including Hizbullah and Hamas that have thousands of long-range missiles pointed at every major city and population center in the Jewish state. The political turbulence in Syria is a no-win situation for both the country’s civilians and the Jewish state. Syrian opposition forces increasingly match the regime’s brutality and disdain for the lives of the Syrian people. Anti-Assad leaders have made it clear that in the event of their successful takeover in Syria nothing will change regarding national hatred of the Jewish state. They will continue to deem Israel as their number one enemy. Pray for Israel to have wisdom and divine might to protect its borders, its cities and its people.

UN PEACEKEEPERS FEAR HIZBULLAH TERRORISTS: The peacekeepers of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) are increasingly coming into hostile and even violent contact with the Hizbullah terrorist militia near the Lebanon-Israel border. The Lebanese troops who had taken control of the border after the last war in 2006 have largely been redeployed as a result of mounting tension on the country's eastern border due to the ongoing Syrian civil war. Taking advantage of this power vacuum, Hizbullah has entered the area in force, and is daily confronting the blue helmets of UNIFIL. Hizbullah blocks UNIFIL patrols along the border and has even threatened to abduct members of the international peacekeeping force. The moment it becomes clear the lives of the peacekeepers are in peril, UNIFIL will withdraw from the region, driving the final nail in the coffin of UN Resolution 1701 that ended the Second Lebanon War. With both UNIFIL and the UN peacekeepers on the Israel-Syria border threatening to flee the region, it is once more clear that Israel cannot commit its security into the hands of others. Meanwhile, according to reports Sunday, the US has officially warned Lebanon that in case of a Hizbullah attack, the Israeli retaliation will include the destruction of all Lebanese bridges and the targeting of strategic infrastructures in Beirut. According to the warning "Lebanon will be set back 50 years." (Israel Today/J.Post)

UN: THREE PEACEKEEPERS ABDUCTED BETWEEN ISRAEL-SYRIA: Armed men broke into a UN outpost in a buffer zone separating Israel and Syria and abducted three UN military observers, the UN peacekeeping chief said Thursday. Herve Ladsous told reporters the unarmed observers were held by the Syrian men for about five hours before being released, unharmed. It was the third abduction of UN peacekeepers in the tense region since March and underlined again their vulnerability in the spillover of the conflict in Syria. Ladsous called the latest abduction "a very serious incident that illustrates the very difficult conditions that now prevail" in and around the area separating Syrian and Israeli forces which is supposed to be free of armed groups. (AP)

ARABS RIOT, CALL FOR THIRD INTIFADA: Dozens of Palestinian Authority Arabs rioted in the Old City of Jerusalem on Saturday, hurling rocks at Israeli police and setting ablaze garbage bins, according to a police spokeswoman. One news correspondent said some of the demonstrators were carrying banners which called for a "third intifada," or anti-Israeli uprising. The "First Intifada" began in 1987 and lasted into the early 90s. The so-called "Second Intifada" was in fact a massive pre-planned terror war launched by Yasser Arafat, Hamas and other enemies of Israel in 2000 and lasting into the mid-2000s. The protest Saturday was an extension of the demonstrations held in the Old City earlier this week to mark what the Arabs regard as the "Nakba" (catastrophe) of the Jewish state's creation on May 15, 1948. (Arutz-7) “They have made themselves crooked paths; whoever takes that way shall not know peace.” Isa 59:8

LIVNI: NO CHANCE ISRAEL CAN REACH PEACE DEAL WITH HAMAS: There is no chance that Israel could reach a peace agreement with Hamas, Justice Minister Tzipi Livni said Saturday evening in an interview with Army Radio. Livni - the minister responsible for peace talks - was referring to remarks made by Turkish PM Recep Erdogan on Friday that Fatah-Hamas reconciliation is imperative to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. She added that Erdogan views Hamas positively, and this has been his stance for years. "This perception is not correct" she said. "Hamas represents an Islamic ideology that does not recognize Israel's existence. Hamas prefers to isolate itself than to say that Israel has the right to exist or to renounce violence." Livni added that US Secretary of State John Kerry, who is set to visit Israel in the coming week, is determined to re-ignite the peace process. "When the US wants to bring about negotiations, it is certainly a positive thing because this represents our interest," she said. (J.Post) Beneath the facade of the so called “moderate” Palestinian Authority and Israel’s unrelenting enemy, the Hamas terrorist group, there is little difference. Almost nothing is said by Western leaders regarding ceremonies honoring terrorists, or hate-filled Palestinian text books and children’s television shows. Scant mention is made how ongoing evidence of malevolence in PA society shatters the trust of Israelis that Palestinians have any plans for future Arab generations to dwell with them in harmony. Continue to pray for the Gospel to make a difference in the Middle East. Knowledge of Yeshua is the only hope for peace.

THOUSANDS OF ISRAELIS PROTEST AGAINST AUSTERITY MEASURES: Thousands of Israelis took to the streets on Saturday evening to protest against the government's planned austerity measures. The largest demonstration took place at Tel Aviv's Habima Square, while other protests were taking place in Jerusalem, Be'er Sheva, and in front of the Prime Minister's house in Caesarea. Hundreds of protesters assembled in Tel Aviv, many carrying signs reading, among others, "It's time to tax the rich," and "It's enough." Last week too saw large demonstrations across the nation, against the government's austerity measures. In Tel Aviv, alone, some 10,000 protesters marched through the center of the city. (Ha’aretz)

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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