Israel Update



“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” Is 26:3

STATE DEPARTMENT TERROR REPORT NOTES ISRAELI SUCCESSES: The annual US State Department report on terrorism highlighted Israel’s successful responses to threats. The information released Thursday, discusses the state of terrorism around the world in 2009. It points out that four Israelis were killed in three attacks, down from 27 deaths in 13 attacks the previous year, and said Israeli officials believe the Gaza military operation known as Cast Lead helped lower the number of Hamas terrorist attacks originating from the Gaza Strip. The report said, however, Israeli officials believe the quiet is not permanent and Hamas has been using the time to rearm. Additionally, the IDF has learned that Hamas elements in Judea and Samaria are stepping up attempts to carry out a kidnapping “in order to assist the general Palestinian struggle.” They are being encouraged by Hamas' headquarters in Damascus. (JTA) Pray for continued protection against kidnappings of Israeli civilians or soldiers, also against rocket attacks carried out by terrorist groups against the Jewish state.

OIL-EATING ISRAELI BACTERIA FOR BP SPILL:  A natural "bioremediation" technique developed by biologists at an Israeli university may hold the key to the oil spill cleanup in the wake of the BP disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. Professors Eugene Rosenberg and Eliora Ron from Tel Aviv University use naturally occurring oil-munching bacteria to clean hard-to-reach oil pockets that are produced when oil mixes with sand and organic matter on beaches and forms a thin layer on waterways. "It's worked to clean up an oil spill on the coast of Haifa," Ron reports, "so we've got evidence it could work in Florida, too." Their solution addresses the small percentage of oil left behind that sits under rocks and forms a thin film on the water after the surface pools have been sucked up and the oil has been contained. (Israel 21C)

MAYOR’S VISION FOR JERUSALEM: The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) has released a Jerusalem Issue Brief entitled, “The Mayor's Vision for Jerusalem.” In it, Jerusalem Mayor, Nir Barkat says he wants the city to once again become an international cultural and spiritual center. Barkat says he is a “Jerusalemite who spent 15 years in the high-tech sector, taking Israeli companies and ideas into the global marketplace.” He retired seven years ago at the age of 42, and has been working as mayor at an annual salary of one shekel, “promoting and developing the city of Jerusalem.” Barkat condemned the "racist" suggestion of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who days ago asked that Israel restrict Jewish construction in the eastern half of the city. “The municipality will continue to issue building permits to Jews, Christians and Muslims alike throughout the entirety of Jerusalem," said the mayor’s office. Unfortunately, in many cases, the mentality of the Arabs is first to build illegally and then to apply, or not apply, for a building license. (J.Post) “For the Lord of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem and before His elders, gloriously.” Is 24:23

FORMER CIA OFFICIALS SAY ISRAEL MIGHT ATTACK IRAN THIS MONTH: A group of former CIA officials warns US President Obama that Israel might attack Iran “even within a month,” and that Obama bears responsibility for having praised Netanyahu. “This would likely lead to a wider war,” said the letter issued last week by veteran intelligence professionals. The document continues, “Israel’s leaders would calculate that once the battle is joined, it will be politically untenable for you to give anything less than unstinting support to Israel, no matter how the war started, and that US troops and weaponry would flow freely. This can be stopped, but only if you move quickly to pre-empt an Israeli attack by publicly condemning such a move before it happens.” (INN)

UN TEACHES JIHAD IN JERUSALEM: The Palestinian Authority continues to provoke young schoolchildren to armed struggle against Israel in its textbooks used by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and to teach incitement in Israel's capital city, says investigative reporter David Bedein. The books in question include passages praising terrorists killed while attacking Israel as “martyrs.”  They also teach children that Arabs descended from those who fled Israel during the War of Independence have a right to “return” to Israel.  Bedein's finding that the textbooks in Arab schools in Jerusalem are as problematic as those used in PA schools elsewhere is backed by PA Minister of Education Lamis al-Alami. He confirmed the textbooks provided by the PA for UNRWA schools are precisely the same in Jerusalem as in Ramallah, Shechem and Gaza. “It's the first education system since the Third Reich which prepares its pupils to demonize Jews and to wage war against the Jews,” Bedein said. (INN)

TURKEY REPORTS 90% DROP IN ISRAELI TOURISTS: Only 2,600 Israelis visited Turkey in June, compared to just over 27,000 in June 2009. Israel advised its citizens to avoid traveling to Turkey after a May 31 Israeli commando raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla sparked public outrage. Israel lifted the warning last month, citing an end to protests over the raid. However, the Counter-Terrorism Bureau did advise Israelis in Turkey not to stand out, not to speak Hebrew, and not to carry any signs that give away their Israeli identity. (Ynet)

DUE TO HEAT WAVE, FIRES BREAK OUT ACROSS ISRAEL: Fires broke out across Israel on Friday, a result of the heat wave that has afflicted the country over the past week. Six firefighting crews are battling a large blaze near agricultural communities in the hills outside of Jerusalem. Firefighters are working to contain a fire near the Banias nature reserve in the Golan Heights. Hikers have been ordered not to enter the area and helicopters are being used in the efforts to extinguish the blaze. Elsewhere in the Galilee, five firefighting crews are quelling a blaze near Sakhnin. In the last three months, about 1,000 fires have broken out in Israel, destroying about 700,000 trees. (Ha’aretz) Please pray for an end to scorching summer temperatures that are destroying livestock and fruit crops as well as igniting fires across the country.

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  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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