Israel Update

July 24, 2013

“Remember, Lord, the reproach of Your servants - how I bear in my bosom the reproach of all the many peoples.” Ps 89:50

EU BANS HIZBULLAH MILITARY WING: In a compromise to avoid labeling the Lebanon-based Hizbullah group a terror organization, the European Union voted Monday to place its military wing on the list of terrorist entities. The council of 28 EU foreign ministers could not reach a unanimous vote on the issue, although a majority was reached. Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin said the vote came after many years of hard work by the ministry in the halls of European foreign ministries. It is also widely believed the Iranian-backed group's decision to intervene militarily in the Syrian Civil War, on behalf of the Assad regime, convinced many of those who previously opposed a ban to make the move. Israel has in the past urged the EU to list the entire group as a terrorist organization, but this decision has been welcomed as a partial victory. Monday's decision by the EU to label Hizbullah's military wing as a terrorist group will have far-reaching implications in terms of economic and other impacts on the organization, including visa bans on certain individuals and the freezing of assets belonging to the group. (Arutz-7)

NETANYAHU: HIZBULLAH POLITICAL WING SHOULD BE INCLUDED IN EU BLACKLIST: PM Netanyahu on Monday welcomed the EU’s decision to include Hizbullah’s military wing on its list of terrorist organizations. He stated, however, that Israel did not view any distinction between the organization's armed and political wings. "As far as Israel is concerned, Hizbullah is one organization, the arms of which are indistinguishable." Netanyahu added that Hizbullah "has imposed terrorist rule on wide sections of Lebanon, has converted them into an Iranian protectorate and is stockpiling tens of thousands of rockets there. These have been placed in the heart of civilian populations and are designed to be fired at population centers in Israel." The premier thanked the leaders of the EU's 28 member states and expressed his hope the decision would lead to "tangible steps against the organization." (J.Post)

PALESTINIANS, ISRAELIS PLAY DOWN CHANCES OF IMMINENT TALKS: Israelis and Palestinians played down on Monday the prospects of their envoys meeting in Washington any time soon, and the White House said getting the two sides to agree to a peace deal remained an "enormous challenge." Palestinians said negotiations could not begin unless it was clear in advance they would be about a future state based on the pre-1967 lines. "If they reach an agreement over the details, in accordance with the Palestinian demands, then the launch of negotiations will be announced," Nabil Abu Rudaineh, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said Monday. (Reuters) Pray that both Palestinian and global leaders, including well-meaning John Kerry, will understand there is absolutely zero chance Israel is going to agree to a future Palestinian state based on pre-1967 lines. It is a ludicrous demand.

PM DEMANDED US FREE POLLARD, AS ISRAEL WILL LET TERRORISTS GO: Among the “gestures” the US suggested Israel undertake to resume talks with the Palestinian Authority was the release of terrorists from Israeli prisons. It would not have been the first time Israel agreed to such a “gesture” at Washington's request – but this time, PM Netanyahu sought to make it a three way deal. Israel would be prepared to release terrorists in order to jumpstart the talks, Netanyahu told the Americans. But Israel wanted something in return: The release of Jonathan Pollard from an American prison. Needless to say, the Americans immediately refused the proposal. At this point, it is not clear if the negotiations are on or not. Early Monday, PA officials said they had no information on the reopening of talks with Israel, and could not say when, if ever, they would take place. (INN)

THE HIGH PRICE OF KERRY’S VICTORY: Ahmed Majdalani, a PLO executive committee member, told media sources that US Secretary of State John Kerry would endorse the 1967 lines as the starting point of negotiations and assured the Palestinians that Israel would free a number of terrorist prisoners gradually in the coming months. Thus, the Palestinians have already made it abundantly clear they won't actually negotiate in good faith but will only show up expecting the US to deliver Israeli concessions to them on a silver platter. The Palestinians had no interest in returning to negotiations they've been boycotting for four and a half years. But both Israel and the Palestinians didn't wish to obstruct Kerry's desire for talks. He might have left off once the Palestinians demonstrated their lack of interest, but since he persisted, they felt they had no choice but to show up. Abbas and the PA are too weak to agree to any deal that would conclusively end a conflict that neither Hamas nor much of Fatah actually wants to end. Recognizing the legitimacy of a Jewish state, no matter where its borders might be drawn, is something no Palestinian leader can afford to do at this point in history. The culture of Palestinian politics that has revolved around the delegitimization of Israel and Jewish history makes it impossible. That's why they've rejected three Israeli offers of a Palestinian state. (Commentary Magazine)

GERMANY BACKS AWAY FROM EU SETTLEMENT DIRECTIVES: Germany has distanced itself from the "controversial European Union guidelines" banning cooperation with Israeli entities beyond the Green Line. A spokesman for German chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union party said, "Israel is the recognized administrative power in the territories without which approved development projects like solar energy or sewage works could not be installed." (J.Post) Pray all European nations will come to the obvious conclusions that last week’s EU banning of cooperation with Israeli enterprises and individuals outside the Green Line is bias, unfair, and unworkable. It will cause endless red-tape and loss of money for Israel as well as for Europe. Additionally, it could eventually render many Palestinians jobless who are presently employed by Israeli enterprises in Judea, Samaria, and E. Jerusalem - as well as the Golan.

HAREIDI DRAFT LAW PASSES: The Knesset passed the “Perry Law” for drafting hareidi men into the military by a vote of 64 to 21 Tuesday morning. The bill passed in the first reading and requires two more readings in order to become the law of the land. The vote took place around 5:00 a.m., after a long night of deliberations in the plenum. In the course of the debate, Finance Min. Yair Lapid turned to the hareidi MKs and reminded them of the Torah passage that speaks of working six days every week before the Sabbath. “It does not say 'you shall sit in the yeshiva for six days and someone else will work for you,'” he added sarcastically, “or 'you shall sit in the yeshiva for six days and the secular public will be the Messiah's donkey for you. We have ceased to be the Messiah's donkey,” Lapid said - in a reference to a teaching of Rabbi Avraham Kook, which likened the present generations of Israel to “the donkey of the Messiah,” to be followed by the Messiah himself. United Torah Judaism MKs took scissors in hand and cut their clothes in the manner of Jewish people whose close relative has died, calling out: “This is a dark day for the Israeli Knesset.” (Arutz-7)

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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