Israel Update

July 21, 2013

“I will gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; they have also divided up My land.” Joel 3:2

ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN PEACE TALKS TO RESUME: Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations will resume, US Secretary of State John Kerry announced Friday. Top negotiators from both sides - Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat - will meet next week in Washington to advance the discussions. The terms of the resumption of talks were not made clear. The Palestinians have demanded that negotiations be based on the pre-1967 lines; Israel has resisted such terms. The announcement on the resumption of negotiations came after Kerry flew from Jordan to Ramallah earlier Friday to meet Abbas as he battled to salvage his Middle East peace bid. Kerry had spent four hours earlier on the phone talking to both sides before making the decision to dash to Ramallah to meet Abbas for the third time this week. The whirlwind diplomacy came after the PA leadership rejected Kerry's proposals for a framework to guide the renewal of peace talks with the Israelis stalled for nearly three years. US President Barack Obama on Thursday urged PM Binyamin Netanyahu to resume talks. (JTA) Pray Israel’s leaders will not be worn down, by constant pressures from the nations to give way to the suicidal demands of the Palestinian Authority, an entity having only one long lasting goal – not to build its own state – rather, to destroy the Jewish state. The increasing demands being made by the PA leaders are utterly “off the charts,” in terms of being feasible for Israel to carry out without signing its own death warrant.

BENNETT: TALKS BASED ON ’49 LINES? WE’RE OUT: Bayit Yehudi Chairman and Minister of Economics, Naftali Bennett, made clear this week that his party will not be a partner in a government that holds diplomatic negotiations based on the idea of returning to Israel's pre-1967 borders. "The Bayit Yehudi party, which I head, will not be a partner, even for one second, in a government that agrees to negotiate based on pre-'67 lines,” he stated. “Our capital, Jerusalem, is not up for negotiations and will never be up for negotiations. It should be made clear to Mr. Kerry that Israel will never return to the Auschwitz borders, will not freeze settlement activity and will not agree to offer a sacrifice so that he can get a Nobel Peace Prize," he said. "I am certain the prime minister will not be a partner to abandoning Israel's security.” The term "Auschwitz borders" was coined by former Israeli FM Abba Eban, to express what he saw as the mortal danger to Israel's security by ceding the strategically-important territories. (INN)

EXPERTS: EU BOYCOTTS AGAINST ISRAEL COULD LEAD TO ‘LEGAL MORASS’: Despite Israel's efforts to stop the process, the European Union on Friday published its new official policy boycotting Jews and Israelis in areas of Israel liberated in the 1967 Six Day War, including Judea and Samaria and most of Jerusalem. Beginning next January, contracts and agreements between EU entities and businesses, individuals, and institutions from those areas will not be legally recognized by EU courts and forums. Israeli experts said the implications of the policy could have a major impact on how Israel does business with the EU. For example, Holocaust survivors who have accounts in banks in areas like Ramat Eshkol - a large Jerusalem neighborhood considered “occupied” under the EU guidelines – may find that their reparation payments are held up, as Germany, an EU member, would refuse to transfer money to such banks. Israeli owners of property in Europe who live in Judea and Samaria could find themselves unable to collect rent from their properties, as European courts would not enforce those contracts. The policy, said the experts, could cause a “legal morass” that would tie up courts in Israel and the EU for years. (Arutz-7)

US DECLINES TO ISSUE REBUKE OF EU SETTLEMENT REGULATIONS: The State Department declined to issue a rebuke of the European Union for its new regulations barring member nations from cooperating with Israeli organizations and businesses operating in east Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights. An expert at the Brookings Institution, one of Washington’s oldest think tanks said, given the nature of exchanges between the US and the EU, it was likely the Obama administration was given prior notice of the policy shift. B’nai B’rith International expressed “outrage” in a statement to journalists. “These guidelines clearly display the longstanding EU double standard and obsession with Israel to the point of outright discrimination,” president Allan Jacobs said. “Syria’s civil war and Iran’s march toward nuclear weapons do not get the same attention as Israel.” The American Jewish Committee issued a similar rebuke. “The key to achieving a two-state solution – which, again, we wholeheartedly support – is by encouraging direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, not taking steps now to penalize one party, in this case Israel, while emboldening the other,” said David Harris, executive director of the AJC. (J.Post)

WHEN EUROPE DEMANDED ISRAEL SURRENDER THE WESTERN WALL: The EU's new directive against the Jewish state includes a requirement that all future agreements between Israel and the EU include a clause in which Israel accepts the EU position that all territory over the Green Line does not belong to Israel. One Israeli official noted that the new EU policy is in effect demanding that Israel deny - in writing - any rights to the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City, Judaism's holiest site. By conditioning further dealings with Israel on a government acknowledgement that all territory beyond the Green Line is not part of Israel, the EU has issued a demand to which few mainstream Israeli leaders will acquiesce. (Times of Israel) “My soul melts from heaviness; strengthen me according to Your word.” Ps 119:28

31 MK’S TELL PM: ANSWER EU BOYCOTT BY BUILDING: Thirty-one Knesset Members have called on PM Netanyahu to end the de facto freeze on construction in Judea and Samaria, in response to the EU's decision to boycott the parts of Israel that were liberated in 1967. The MKs are members of the Knesset Caucus for the Land of Israel. "In recent days, we are witnessing another attempt by the European Union to intimidate the State of Israel, and we therefore demand the immediate resumption of construction in Judea and Samaria,” the MKs wrote in a letter. They asked Netanyahu to allow planned tenders to be carried out, and to issue permits for new housing units in Judea and Samaria. Finance Minister Yair Lapid wrote on Friday that the EU’s new ban on areas located beyond the 1949 Armistice Lines will do nothing to advance peace talks. In fact, said Lapid, the ban will simply encourage terrorist groups. (INN)

PA OFFICIAL: LATEST EU GUIDELINES HARM PALESTINIANS: A senior Palestinian Authority official said this week that the new EU guidelines relating to the territories "is going to be disastrous economically and socially for the Palestinian community." He said the European move will freeze joint projects, force employers to stop hiring Palestinians to work on linked projects with Israelis, and could lead to widespread layoffs of Palestinians laborers working in Judea and Samaria industrial zones. Sammer Darawsha, who works in a joint Israeli-Palestinian agricultural project funded by members of the EU, asked, "If they take away our livelihoods and food, exactly what kind of peace will be here?" (Israel Hayom)

YAD VASHEM NAMED WORLD’S 4TH TOP MUSEUM: Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial has been ranked fourth among the world's top 25 museums by the popular TripAdvisor travel website, which relies on reviews and comments of tourists and travelers from all around the world. The website's visitors praised the museum's "moving and informative displays" and said that visiting Yad Vashem was an "emotional, educational and inspiring" experience and "a must for any human." TripAdvisor also awarded Yad Vashem with the 2013 Certificate of Excellence, which is given to outstanding institutions that have received praise and recognition in reviews by the website's travelers. Yad Vashem is currently ranked first among Jerusalem's 146 attractions and has been named the most recommended place to visit in the holy city. (Ynet)

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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