February 28, 2018

Family of Itamar massacre victims sues terrorists for $114 million

The family of an Israeli couple murdered along with three of their children in their West Bank home in 2012 filed suit Monday (26th) against the terrorists behind the attack.

In addition to seeking damages from attackers Hakim and Amjad Awad, the Fogel family is also suing the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian Liberation Organization for encouraging the stabbing attack and for paying stipends to the terrorists.

The suit, which was filed at the Jerusalem District Court, is seeking $114 million in damages.

On March 11, 2012, the two terrorists entered the home of Rabbi Ehud and Ruth Fogel, in Itamar and brutally murdered them and three of their six children.



Lieberman: 20-30 terror attacks thwarted per week in Hebron

Israel security forces thwarted between 20 and 30 terror attacks per week in Hebron in recent months, according to Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

“The security apparatus is working hard so that we can celebrate Purim in peace,” Lieberman said during a tour of the West Bank city on Tuesday (27th).

“In the Central Command, and especially in the area of Hebron, wide-scale activities have been carried out in recent months – between 20 and 30 terror attacks have been thwarted each week.”



Lebanese law allows Hizbullah to circumvent U.S. sanctions – Nazeer Rida

A clause in Lebanon’s new electoral law allows Hizbullah to circumvent U.S. financial sanctions.  While U.S. sanctions prohibit Lebanese banks from opening accounts for people linked to Hizbullah, the new law enables Hizbullah’s deputies in Parliament to have accounts in Lebanese pounds, to which their salaries are transferred.



For Palestinians, Israel is one big settlement – Bassam Tawil

Senior Hamas official Ismail Radwan last week made it clear that the conflict with Israel is not about Jews living in settlements in the West Bank.  The Palestinians see all of Israel as one big settlement that needs to be uprooted.  All the Jews, they say, are “settlers” who need to “go back to where they came from.”  Anyone who follows the news on Palestinian media outlets will see how all Jews, whether they are living in a West Bank settlement or in Tel Aviv, are referred to as “settlers.”

It is time to listen carefully to what the Palestinians are saying in Arabic, and to understand that the conflict is not about Jerusalem and not about settlements.



Canada’s Conservative Party vows to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital – Stephanie Levitz

Canada’s Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says if his party forms a government in 2019, it will follow President Trump’s lead and recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.  A pledge posted on the party’s website said, “Canada’s Conservatives recognize the obvious fact that Israel, like every other sovereign nation, has a right to determine where its capital is located.”



Jerusalem Embassy move strengthens U.S. credibility – Israel Kasnett

The U.S. announced on Feb. 23 that it will move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May.  While some claim that the Arab world will react negatively, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro said, “Arab governments and the Arab public have other items higher on their agenda….Many Arab governments see Israel as a strategic partner, and many of these Arab states seek a positive relationship with President Trump.  I’m not surprised there hasn’t been a strong reaction in the Arab world, and I don’t think there will be one in May either.”

Longtime Israeli diplomat Dore Gold, who served as director-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, believes Trump’s decision shows he can keep his word.

Asked if other countries would follow suit in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Gold noted: “Keep in mind that the U.S. was the first country to recognize Israel – within minutes – after it announced its independence in 1948.  After the U.S. recognized Israel, other countries followed.  So, I think it is likely, yes.”



Public employees strike in Gaza over unpaid salaries

Public sector employees in Gaza went on strike Monday (26th) over unpaid salaries.  The union of public employees said that staff had only received 40% of their salaries for five months.  Hamas and the PA have traded blame over responsibility.

(afp.com; arabnews.com)


University of Virginia condemns disruption of Jewish student meeting – Joe Heim

Protesters chanting anti-Israel slogans disrupted a discussion with Israel Defense Force reservists last week at the University of Virginia, organized by the Brody Jewish Center-Hillel.  The Brody Center said it invited the protesters to take part in the discussion, but the “protesters refused to engage in conversation and instead continued to shout intimidating and hostile slurs.”

Dean Allen W. Groves reviewed video of the incident and emailed the student body, saying the incident “runs counter to our important shared values of respect and intellectual inquiry, and should be firmly rejected….Our students…reject the ‘heckler’s veto of shouting down those with whom we may disagree.”



Israel: 2 additional desalination plants will be constructed

The Israeli Water Authority on Tuesday (27th) approved the authority’s plan to deal with drought in the short and medium term.

Among other things, two additional desalination plants will be built.  Water Authority Manager Giora Shacham ordered the immediate start of all operations in order to increase the water supply as quickly as possible, especially this year and to prepare for an extreme situation in which the drought will continue in 2019.

Israel has been dealing with drought for the last five years.



German town votes to keep church bell dedicated to Hitler

A small town in southwestern Germany has decided to keep a church bell dedicated to Adolf Hitler ringing, but as a memorial to spark dialogue about violence and injustice.

The dpa news agency reported Tuesday (27th) that the Herxheim Berg council voted 10-3 to preserve the bell, which carries the inscription “Everything for the Fatherland – Adolf Hitler” above a Nazi swastika, as a memorial in its protestant church.

State church authorities had offered to fund replacing the bell, one of many which were widespread during the Nazi era.  Most of the bells were removed after the war.