Israel Update

June 8, 2013

“Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, for in You do I trust. Cause me to know the way in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to You.” Ps 143:8

 Iran and the Lebanon-based terrorist organization, Hizbullah, are doing everything they can to keep Assad in power in Syria, said a special report by the The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (ITIC). “For Iran and Hizbullah, the preservation of Bashar Assad's regime is of supreme strategic importance,” ITIC says in its report. The assistance is mutual, the document explains; Syria helps Hizbullah and Iran as much as they assist the Syrian regime. “Syria is Iran's greatest 'resistance camp' ally, providing it with a firm foothold in the heart of the Middle East, as well as political and military influence” said the report, released this week. Meanwhile, “Syria, Israel's implacable enemy, plays a vital role in Hizbullah's military buildup, helping it to develop offensive and deterrent capabilities against the Jewish state. For Iran and Hizbullah, the fall of the Syrian regime would be a disaster. It would weaken Iran's regional position against the US and Israel and damage Hizbullah's military capabilities and political influence in Lebanon,” ITIC said. (Arutz-7) Scatter the peoples who delight in war. Ps 68:30

AUSTRIA WITHDRAWS PEACEKEEPING FORCE FROM GOLAN HEIGHTS: Syrian regime forces on Thursday retook the Quneitra crossing, the only crossing along the Israel-Syria ceasefire line in the Golan Heights, after it was seized earlier by rebels, an Israeli security source said. During the battle between rebel and Syrian army forces, a mortar shell fell on a UN observer base in the area. Two UN troops were lightly injured during the fighting. IDF officials have advised agricultural workers in the area to stay away from the border until the security situation can be clarified. Meanwhile, Austria announced Thursday it is pulling its UN peacekeeping force from the Golan Heights, following increased violence. Austria accounts for about 380 of the 1,000-strong UN force monitoring the Israel-Syria ceasefire line in the Golan Heights. “The uncontrolled and immediate danger to Austrian soldiers has risen to an unacceptable level," the Austrian chancellor, Werner Faymann, said in a statement. "This morning's developments show that a further delay in pulling out soldiers is no longer justifiable," the Austrian statement said. The head of UN peacekeeping operations Herve Ladsous told reporters in Paris, "We are following the situation in the Golan extremely closely, it is very sensitive." (INN)

ISRAEL VOICES CONCERN AFTER AUSTRIA LEAVES UN GOLAN FORCE: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon scrambled Thursday night looking for troops to replace some 380 UN peacekeepers on the Golan Heights that Austria announced earlier in the day it was evacuating. Israeli diplomatic officials said Ban understood the implications to the future of peace keeping missions in the region if the force collapsed because of tension. The Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying it "regrets" the Austrian decision and "hopes it will not lead to an additional escalation" in the region. One diplomatic official said Israel was watching the developments closely and that its faith in the international peace keeping troops hung in the balance. "If at a time when a few bullets are fired, these forces run away from where they are needed to keep the peace, then what is it worth?" the official said. International Relations Minister Yuval Steinitz issued a statement expressing regret at the Austrian move, adding that the lesson for Israel was clear: "Even as part of peace agreements, Israel cannot place its security in the hands of international forces instead of relying on the presence of IDF soldiers." On Wednesday, even before this incident, Steinitz came out strongly against any international force as part of a future peace accord with the Palestinians. (Arutz-7) “Give us help from trouble, for the help of man is useless. Through God we will do valiantly, for it is He who shall tread down our enemies.” Ps 108:12-13

REPORT: S-300 MISSILES NOW ON THEIR WAY TO SYRIA: A report on CNN Thursday said American intelligence units had observed several Russian warships on their way to Syria. The ships are currently in the eastern Mediterranean, and information gathered by the intelligence groups indicates the ships are carrying parts for the S-300 missiles. According to the report, the US has been keeping track of the Russian ships for several days, ever since they left a military base in Russia. Satellite data indicates the ships are carrying cargo suitable for use in a weapons system, most likely the S-300. Several days ago, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia had not yet begun shipping the missiles to Syria. However, in an interview on a Hizbullah television channel last weekend, Syrian President Assad hinted that Syria had already received some of the missiles, the contract for which Damascus signed with Moscow several years ago. (INN)

FRANCE AND ENGLAND ASSERT SARIN DEPLOYED IN SYRIA: The British Foreign Office has said tests reveal the deadly nerve agent sarin has been used during the Syrian civil war. France’s foreign minister also claimed he is certain the chemical weapon had been used by the Assad regime. “These tests show the presence of sarin in various samples in our possession,” Laurent Fabius said. He added that the test results had been passed to the UN. “It would be unacceptable that those guilty of these crimes remain unpunished,” Fabius added. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed revulsion on Tuesday over atrocities in Syria's two-year civil war as detailed in a document prepared by UN human rights investigators. "He has seen this report," Ban's spokesman told reporters. "Frankly he finds the catalog of atrocities in that report to be both sickening and staggering." Syria began in earnest to build a covert chemical weapons program three decades ago, aided by its allies and European chemical wholesalers. Since, it has amassed what is believed to be one of the deadliest stockpiles of nerve agent in the world, according to Western military experts. (J.Post/INN)

NETANYAHU: IRAN ELECTION WON’T STOP QUEST FOR NUKES: PM Binyamin Netanyahu said Wednesday Israel believes Iran will pursue its drive to develop nuclear weaponry whatever the outcome of its June 14 presidential election. "I ask that nobody delude himself. The results of the elections in Iran won't change a thing," Netanyahu said in remarks to Israel's parliament. The Islamic Republic is "methodically moving forward" with its program. Israel, widely believed to have the Middle East's only nuclear arsenal, has said it could take military action if diplomacy and increasingly tough trade and energy sanctions fail to rein in the nuclear activity of its arch-enemy. (Reuters)

ISRAELI MINISTER CONCERNED AS LOCAL VIOLENCE RAMPS UP: Three female Israeli soldiers were attacked on Tuesday by a car full of Arab men. The goal of the assault was to kidnap one or more of the soldiers, but if failed due to fierce resistance by the three young women. The incident occurred as the soldiers were walking to their barracks in central Israel. A vehicle with several Arab men stopped next to them, and one of the passengers attempted to drag one of the female soldiers into the car. The girl struggled, and her companions rushed to her aid, causing the perpetrators to flee the scene. Meanwhile, in Judea and Samaria there were a recorded 83 attacks against Israeli Jews last month alone. In Jerusalem, 38 violent incidents targeting Israelis were documented. Economic Minister Naftali Bennett expressed alarm over these figures, and insisted the army do more to protect Israeli Jews from the daily violence, in particular the increasing number of stone-throwing attacks against Jewish motorists. (Israel Today) Pray government mandates empower Israel’s army and police officials with authority to deal with those who perpetrate stone throwing attacks - and other forms of terrorist aggression against Israelis.

YA’ALON: NO REAL PEACE WITHOUT END TO PALESTINIAN INCITEMENT: "If I open a PA textbook and see that Israel doesn't appear on the map, or that Tel Aviv is designated as a settlement, and when a 3-year-old boy is brought up to admire suicide bombers - you can sign any agreement and in the end it will blow up in your face," Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said this week. Speaking about prospects for peace with the Palestinians, Ya'alon said, "We're ready to begin the process immediately without preconditions, and discuss all the issues. We're ready to advance the diplomatic process, which Abbas is avoiding by setting preconditions. We are unwilling to pay a price just for them to come to the table." Ya'alon added, "We are being attacked over the issue of settlements. If we're talking about peace and coexistence, why are the Palestinians demanding territory free of Jews?" (Israel Hayom)

BLAIR: THERE IS A PROBLEM WITHIN ISLAM: There is a problem within Islam that goes beyond the existence of religious extremists, former British PM Tony Blair said this week, in what seems like a change in perception. “There is a problem within Islam – from the adherents of an ideology that is a strain within Islam. We have to put it on the table and be honest about it,” wrote Blair, who currently serves as Special Envoy to the Middle East. “I am afraid this strain is not the province of a few Islamic extremists. It has at its heart a view about religion and about the interaction between religion and politics that is not compatible with pluralistic, liberal, open-minded societies,” he continued. “At the extreme end of the spectrum are terrorists, but the world view goes deeper and wider than it is comfortable for us to admit. So by and large we don’t admit it,” he added. His comments were made in wake of the murder of British soldier Lee Rigby, who was beheaded by Muslim extremists in an unprovoked attack on a London street in broad daylight. (INN) Pray for more world leaders to wake up to the facts regarding the ever- increasing danger of Islam’s world views and goals - and the Muslim extremists who carry them out. May there be systems and strategies put into place to avert terrorists and their ideologies flooding Western countries.

WORLD’S THINNEST CORNEA TRANSPLANT AT TEL AVIV HOSPITAL: Two "thin" cornea transplants were recently performed for the first time at the Ichilov Medical Center in Tel Aviv. Sometime, such operations are the only way to restore vision to blind eyes. The DMEK procedure takes the back layer of the cornea 10-to-20 thousandths of a millimeter thick. Doctor David Versano said the new procedure is different in that it does not require stitches to keep the implant in the right place, giving the eye more stability and less exposure to dangers. An important advantage is the small amount of tissue which is exchanged, resulting in a smaller chance of rejection and a bigger chance the implant will function well over the years. (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 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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