Israel in the News Sep/Oct 2011

Israeli doctors save Arab baby
Israeli doctors recently saved the life of 7-month-old Odai al-Kafarna of the Gaza Strip by repairing a hole in his heart. His grandmother, who brought him to the Israeli hospital, said the Israelis “have been really good to Odai here.” Upon Odai’s return to Gaza following nearly three weeks of treatment in Israel, his family reportedly expressed deep gratitude toward the Israeli doctors who had operated on and cared for Odai free of charge.

Odai’s life-saving surgery was made possible by the Israeli non-profit organization Save a Child’s Heart, which is a group of Israeli doctors who regularly operate on poor children around the world. Save a Child’s Heart has provided life-saving heart surgery to more than 2,600 children from Africa, the Middle East, Europe, South America, and the Far East.

Israel itself issues permits to more than 10,000 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip every year to enable them to seek medical attention at Israeli hospitals.


‘From Whom?’ Asks Barkat
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said recently that splitting Jerusalem as part of a future peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority will not work. He said he is committed to improving the situation for all residents of Jerusalem—Jews, Christians, and Arabs alike.

Barkat called UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s criticism of Israel for its plans to build in Jerusalem’s Jewish Gilo neighborhood a “double standard”: “Anywhere in the world, would you dare to say that Jews or non-Jews or blacks or people of a certain faith are not allowed to build somewhere? The reality is that in the last week we’ve discussed, and will be approving, 1,400 units for Arab residents; but they don’t report that. The media only report Jewish building. Even international law cannot discriminate between Jews and non-Jews.”

He sharply contradicted the assertion that Jerusalem is “occupied territory”: “This is not occupied territory. From whom? From the Jordanians? From the British? From the Turks? Anywhere you put a shovel in the ground you find Jewish roots in Jerusalem.”


Terrorists Use Google Earth
Terrorists in Gaza have a new tool helping them to fire on innocent civilians living in southern Israel: the popular satellite mapping program, Google Earth. “The technology is always improving,” a terrorist calling himself Abu Saif told a journalist. “Our struggle started with the Kalashnikov, and then it moved to the suicide bomb, then the locally made rocket, and now the Grad rocket.”

Gaza’s rocket-launching crews use Google Earth to aim their weapons, Abu Saif said. The program is seen as superior to maps because it is more up-to-date and precisely locates targets.

Terrorists are believed to have used a laser-guided missile in a recent attack on a school bus that murdered Israeli teenager Daniel Viflic.


Tensions Rise Over Gas Rights
Israel and Lebanon are battling over rights to undersea natural gas fields worth billions of dollars. The Israeli cabinet defined the nation’s maritime borders after Lebanon began laying claim to offshore territories that encompass huge natural gas reserves discovered by Israel in recent years. Last year, Lebanon submitted maps demarcating new maritime borders to the UN. But the lines differ greatly from those decided upon by Israel, and even from those Lebanon itself agreed to years ago.

The natural gas reserves discovered in the eastern Mediterranean are estimated to be the largest in the world and could drastically alter Israel’s economic and energy situation. But the new maritime border insisted upon by Lebanon would mean a loss of billions of dollars worth of gas rights to Israel.

Hezbollah, which effectively controls Lebanon’s government, responded by accusing Israel of “stealing” Lebanon’s natural resources and threatening war. Hezbollah has attacked Israel for less in the past.


Wrong Turn Yields Beating
A 27-year-old Israeli man was savagely beaten and nearly killed after taking a wrong turn into an Arab neighborhood in northern Jerusalem recently. Nir Nachshon, a moving company employee, was trying to reach the Jewish town of Ma’aleh Adumim on Jerusalem’s eastern outskirts when his GPS device mistakenly directed him into the Arab neighborhood of Issawiya.

Local residents who were out on the streets immediately began pelting Nachshon’s vehicle with stones after identifying him as Jewish. Nachshon was then pulled from his van and brutally beaten about the head before being rescued by one of the village leaders.

Israeli commentators say the younger generation of Arabs has been so radicalized by a Palestinian school system full of anti-Jewish incitement that they will try to kill any Jew on sight.


Israeli Cities Tops for Tourists
Travel & Leisure magazine has ranked Jerusalem and Tel Aviv as two of the top five cities to visit in Africa and the Middle East in 2011. The best travel destinations in order were Cape Town, South Africa; Jerusalem; Tel Aviv; Cairo, Egypt; and Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Last year the magazine ranked Jerusalem the number one destination in the region, while Tel Aviv was still at number three.

Every 5 Minutes a Christian Dies for His Faith
The world is becoming increasingly dangerous for people who place their faith in Jesus Christ. Figures cited recently by human rights representative Massimo Introvigne show that 105,000 Christians are killed each year solely because of their faith. That translates into one Christian every five minutes.

“The number is shocking,” wrote Michael Carl in a June 19 article in World Net Daily (WND). Introvigne, an Italian attorney and representative for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, cited the figures from an article written by the Center for the Study of Global Christianity (CSGC). CSGC researcher Bert Hickman affirmed them: “Those figures are accurate….We report that…over the last 10 years, on average 100,000 Christians have been killed every year.”

Hickman said the number “doesn’t count Christians who are killed incidentally because of other causes, so that does work out to be about one every five minutes,” reported the WND article.

The article also said Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern was not surprised by the figures because anti-Christian violence is on the rise. WND quoted Racho as saying, “So far, the main persecution of Christians is in Muslim countries. The primary number of Christians persecuted and killed are those living in Islamic countries.”

Racho said there also is widespread persecution of Christians living in communist countries like China, North Korea, and Eritrea.

Hickman said his sources “are missionaries, human rights activists and aid workers,” the article said.

Christians are also widely persecuted by the Hindus in India. Worthy Christian News reported in July, “Several Gospel for Asia missionaries are encountering intense opposition, but persecution is not uncommon in this part of the world: entire families have been forced to leave their homes and villages because of the cause of Christ.”

Next Comes Sharia
The Muslim Brotherhood will impose Islamic Sharia law in Egypt if it comes to power, according to the movement’s Sobhi Saleh, the Egyptian Arabic daily Al Masry Al Youm reports. Saleh, a leading Muslim Brotherhood figure, claimed Sharia would protect Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

“Terms like civil or secular state are misleading,” he said. “Islamic Sharia is the best system for Muslims and non-Muslims.”

Prior to the “spring revolutions” that have shaken many Arab regimes to the core and brought new governments to power in Egypt and Tunisia, the United States Central Intelligence Agency had classified the Muslim Brotherhood as a “secular organization.”

U.S. President Barack Obama has pledged $1 billion to Egypt as well as the cancellation of an additional $1 billion in Egyptian debt in his bid to democratize the Middle East and advance American values in the region.

The Muslim Brotherhood, an illegal party from 1954 until earlier this year, is one of Egypt’s most powerful political forces and is well-situated to be the big winner in Egypt’s coming elections. This underscores critics’ doubts about Obama’s plans to use Egypt as the flagship of his vision to democratize and liberalize the region.

The Brotherhood recently set aside differences with rival Salafist group Jama’a al-Islamiya to form an alliance of Islamic parties. Although it now claims to have renounced violence, Jama’a al-Islamiya was responsible for a number of terrorist atrocities in Egypt throughout the 1990s, including the 1997 Luxor Massacre in which 62 people were killed.

by Arutz-7,

Israel May Have Oil!
For years, many believed the mission of Texas-based Zion Oil & Gas to be nothing more than a pipe dream, the false hope of ideological Christian Zionists. But Zion Oil & Gas’s Matt Dickerson has told Israel Today that one of the company’s drilling sites in Israel is monitoring a significant release of hydrocarbons, an organic compound that most commonly occurs in crude oil.

Israel has already succeeded in finding enormous natural gas fields, but it is now believed that deep below the gas there is oil. It is that deep strata that Zion Oil & Gas and a few other companies are targeting.

Being able to extract and export oil, in addition to natural gas, in a commercially viable way would transform Israel almost overnight. No longer would the Jewish state have to rely on energy sources from hostile or self-serving providers.

For its long dedication to helping Israel achieve this goal, Zion Oil & Gas, a wholly Christian-owned and operated company, has secured the trust and backing of the Israeli government. Zion Oil & Gas recently won approval to do exploratory drilling in the northern parts of the Jordan Valley, an area covering nearly 56,000 acres. Together with its Joseph License and its Asher-Menashe License, the company’s new Jordan Valley License now gives Zion Oil & Gas drilling rights over 218,000 acres of northern Israel.

Israel’s recently retired petroleum commissioner, Dr. Ya’akov Mimran, told Israeli business journal Globes he is “very optimistic about both gas and oil discoveries. We’re in a good place on the road. I also have faith in onshore wells by companies such as…Zion Oil & Gas, which are targeting deep strata.”

A World Energy Council estimate suggests Israel could be sitting on 250 billion barrels of oil, which is nearly as much as the proven reserves of Saudi Arabia.

by Israel Today,

Delta May Adopt No-Jew Fly Policy
Delta Air Lines’ latest deal with Saudi Arabian Airlines may ban Jewish people from boarding Delta planes in the United States bound for Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

World Net Daily reported that Delta wants to add the Saudi carrier to its SkyTeam Alliance, which will mean adopting Saudi policies on flights to Saudi. Former U.S. Rep. Fred Grandy (R-IA) and his wife, Catherine, who are fighting the infiltration of Sharia Law into the United States, brought the issue before Congress.

Jeffrey Lovitky, a Washington, DC, attorney, said the Saudis could also force Delta to ban Americans wearing certain clothing and prevent them from “carrying and reading religious literature of their choice” on a plane that takes off from New York or Washington. “This includes, but is not limited to, both Christian and Jewish sacred texts,…as well as any objects that reflect their religion, such as a cross necklace,” he said.

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