Israel in the News Jan/Feb 2007
U.S. helps Fatah
ARUTZ-7—In a move presented as an effort to counter the growing strength and influence of Hamas, the United States has been arming and training Fatah fighters, headed by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. The premise is that Fatah and Hamas are headed for a violent civil war, and the U.S. prefers a Fatah victory.
Hamas has been gaining strength. An Israeli commander described a complex system of tunnels along the Philadelphia Route, “most of which are camouflaged and not even dug up. The minute there is an order for smuggling, they dig out an opening and connect to a preexisting tunnel; and after the smuggling is completed, they cover it over.”
He said Hamas has begun building an army-like hierarchical infrastructure, including special forces, brigades, and battalions. “It is reasonable to assume that, in the future, Hamas will put into the field a force of thousands of terrorists, organized and well armed…with weapons systems and night-vision systems, which will form a division. In addition, Hamas is constantly working to increase the range of the Kassam [rockets]—and the technology is within reach.”
PA sources said the training by Americans started last year. In the past, PA terrorists were found to have used weapons provided by the United States and Israel in attacks on Jewish targets.
In an interview with WorldNetDaily’s Aaron Klein, a Force 17 terrorist implied the U.S weapons would be transferred to the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a terrorist organization under U.S. law.
Oil in Israel!
ARUTZ-7—An Israeli company reports it has struck oil in the Dead Sea region, possibly worth up to $350 million.
The company, Ginko Oil Exploration, says that oil spurted from a depth of 1,800 meters (1.12 miles) and that further tests will be conducted. The oil, estimated at about 6.5 million barrels’ worth, was found just north of the Dead Sea. Ginko extracted about 120,000 barrels of crude oil from the site about 10 years ago, but then gave up.
In April 2004, Ginko discovered a seven-meter layer of natural gas in the same region. Israel has produced only 20 million barrels of oil in the last half-century, less than what the Saudis produce every three days.
Ousted Jews Seek Justice
ARUTZ-7—Efforts by world Jewry to obtain redress and spread awareness about the eviction of about 900,000 Jews from Arab and Muslim countries received a boost when the Israeli government announced it would fund and assist the effort.
“There are not only Palestinian refugees,” Justice Minister Meir Sheetrit announced, “but there were Jewish refugees—600,000 of whom came to Israel. The State of Israel seeks to put the claims of Jews from Arab countries on the table, parallel to the extremely well-expressed claim by [the Arabs] who left in 1948 and 1967.”
“The difference,” Sheetrit added, “is that no Jews want to go back to those countries. One can say that there was an exchange of populations for the sake of peace.”
An estimated 900,000 Jews were forced to leave their homes in Arab and Muslim countries in the course of the 20th century. Furthermore, Arab and Muslim governments robbed these Jews of more than $100 billion in personal and communal assets.
Google, IBM Expand in Israel
Arutz-7—Google and IBM will expand their operations in Israel. Google will open a research and development (R&D) center in Tel Aviv. The Internet behemoth already has one facility in Haifa. The Tel Aviv center will employ experts in algorithms, database technology, and Internet programming development.
IBM will open a software lab that will deal with metadata management and collaborative real-time technologies. IBM already has two R&D centers in Israel.
IBM Israel General Manager Meir Nissensohn said the company’s latest move “is a strong vote of confidence from IBM for the software development capabilities existing in this country.”
ARUTZ-7—Israeli scientists have taken the standard smoke detector to a new level, creating a device that alerts people when any biological hazard is in the air.
“Not only can the BAS101 alert you to airborne biological threats on the spot, but within minutes it gives a definitive answer of whether it’s anthrax or another biological hazard. Therefore, action can be taken immediately, without the need to wait for the results from the lab,” said its developer.
The BAS101 monitors airborne particles, collecting them in a receptacle and transferring them to a biological unit that traps any dangerous bacteria.
In 2001 Western intelligence agents discovered al-Qaida’s step-by-step manual on how to develop biological and other weapons and substances that could then be introduced into ventilation systems, such as subway systems, airports, hospitals, shopping malls, and other high-traffic areas.
Pomelit a Hit
ARUTZ-7—Some half-million crates of Israeli pomelit fruits have been exported to Japan, where they are rapidly becoming a major hit. And not only in Japan.
The pomelit is a cross between a grapefruit and a pomelo, which is also a citrus fruit. The Agriculture Ministry notes that pomelit juice has special qualities, enabling the reduction of blood pressure and cholesterol levels, as proven by studies in Kaplan Hospital in Rehovot and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Another 500,000 crates of the fruit were shipped to European markets.
Jewish Atheist Fights AIPAC
George Soros, a Hungarian-born, left-wing, American-Jewish billionaire and atheist who rarely supports Jewish causes and in 2003 told a Jewish gathering that Israel and the Jewish people are partially to blame for anti-Semitism, is trying to counteract the conservative influence of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). He is forming a lobby of his own that would influence the United States away from supporting Israel and toward supporting the Palestinians.
Forbes lists Soros, 76, as the 27th richest man in the world. In 2003 he committed $15.5 million to oust President George W. Bush. “It is the central focus of my life,” he said then. A Republican official commented, “George Soros has purchased the Democratic Party.”
Caroline Glick, deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post, referred to Soros’ latest brainchild as “The Jewish American anti-Israel lobby.” “Many of the individuals and organizations associated with the initiative have actively worked to undermine Israel,” she wrote in an October 12, 2006, article titled “Soros Moves on to Israel.”
“Unfortunately, unless concerted steps are taken by the Israeli government, Israeli citizens and the American Jewish community, the downward trend in relations with the U.S. will only get worse,” she said.
MoveOn.org, an extremely influential, Soros-financed organization, helped strip Connecticut’s Joseph Lieberman of the Democratic nomination for Senate last year because Lieberman backed the war in Iraq. However, Lieberman recaptured his seat as an Independent.
Wrote Glick: “Propaganda posted on the Web site was laced with blatant anti-Semitic attacks. Postings repeatedly referred to Lieberman as ‘the Jew Lieberman,’ and ‘ZioNazi Lieberman.’ These attacks were by no means unusual. Indeed, anti-Semitic slurs against Israel and Jewish Americans, and belittle-ments of the Holocaust, appear regularly in MoveOn.org Web forums.”
Glick named American Friends of Peace Now, Israel Policy Forum, and Brit Tzedek v’Shalom as hurting Israel. “Together they worked to sink the Palestinian Anti-Terror Act, which enjoyed overwhelming support in the Congress and the Senate and was backed by AIPAC.”
Furthermore, she said, “Everyone knows that organizations like Not in My Name, which acts as the Jewish American branch of the International Solidarity Movement, seeks to undermine IDF [Israel Defense Forces] operations and makes common cause with Israel’s enemies, are not Zionist organizations.”
Wrote Glick: “Far from acting to promote Israel, this new lobby will work to weaken Israel, to weaken the Israel-American alliance, and to strengthen Israel’s enemies. While its Jewish founders insist that they are pro-Israel, the fact of the matter is that they are about to establish an American Jewish anti-Israel lobby.”