March 13, 2018

Netanyahu warns of Mideast arms race

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday (11th) reported to the Israeli Cabinet on his visit to the U.S. last week: “The diplomatic talks focused mainly on Iran.  I said that the nuclear agreement with Iran contains within it many dangers for the world, including the special danger of the nuclearization of the Middle East. Many countries in the Middle East are saying that they are also allowed to enrich uranium if Iran is allowed to do so; therefore, the way to prevent this danger, the nuclearization of the Middle East, is to either thoroughly correct the agreement or abrogate it.”

“Moreover, I remind you that Iran declares, on an almost daily basis – including recently, its intention to wipe out the State of Israel.  It is hardly worth saying that we will not allow this.”



Palestinian Authority rejects U.S. invitation to Humanitarian Summit on Gaza

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has rejected an invitation by the White House to attend a Gaza “stakeholders” summit next week, senior PA official Ahmad Majdalani told Voice of Palestine radio over the weekend.  Jason Greenblatt, an assistant to President Donald Trump, said the meeting on March 13 will be a brainstorming session devoted to solving the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.



PA: Warm relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia are damaging the Palestinian Authority

Top Israeli and Saudi Arabian officials reportedly held a series of secret meetings in Cairo last week.  A PA official told Qatar’s al-Khaleej news site on Friday (9th), “The warm relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia are damaging the Palestinian Authority.  It seems that Israel is no longer the greatest enemy in the region anymore.”



No more pay-to-slay: Pass the Taylor Force Act to curb terror

Two years ago, Taylor Force, a 28-year-old American tourist and former U.S. Army captain who had served three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was stabbed to death in Tel Aviv by a Palestinian terrorist.  The terrorist’s family in the West Bank celebrated and pocketed cash from the Palestinian Authority, as do all terrorists’ families. “Martyr” payments, which can go as high as $3,500 a month, add up to $400 million a year, more than 20% of the annual foreign aid to the Palestinian government.

These payments send a clear message that violence against innocent people, targeted because they happen to be Israeli or American, is incentivized.  The Taylor Force Act would stop all U.S. aid to the PA until these official rewards for terror cease. The bill has cleared the House. The Senate is next.  Pass this law now.



Haley warns if Security Council doesn’t act on Syria, U.S. will

UNITED NATIONS – US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned on Monday (12th) that if the UN Security Council fails to act on Syria, Washington “remains prepared to act if we must,” just as it did last year when it bombed a Syrian government air base over a deadly chemical weapons attack.

“It is not the path we prefer, but it is a path we have demonstrated we will take, and are prepared to take again,” Haley told the 15-member Security Council.  “When the international community consistently fails to act, there are times when states are compelled to take their own action.”



Syrian Observatory says more than half a million killed during war

BEIRUT – The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, said on Monday (12th) that about 511,000 people had been killed since the Syrian war began seven years ago.

The Observatory, which tracks death tolls using a network of contacts inside Syria, said about 85% of the dead had been killed by government forces and their allies.



Hamas calls to resume suicide bombings

Mustafa al-Sawwaf, a columnist for the Hamas Al-Risalah daily, called for the renewal of suicide bombings against Israelis.

The article was printed as part of a special edition marking the 22nd anniversary of a series of suicide bombings in 1996.

In his article, he asked, “Will we soon be witnessing suicide attacks that will redeem the reputation of the quality attacks that shook the Zionist entity and can cause the leaders of the occupation to think again?”



Hundreds of Poles gather to express solidarity with Jews

WARSAW, Poland – Hundreds of Poles gathered on Sunday (11th) in Warsaw to express their solidarity with Jews who perished in the Holocaust, were expelled from Poland 50 years ago, or feel targeted by a new wave of anti-Semitism.

Speakers at the demonstration denounced policies of the current Polish government that have led to a dispute with Israel and sparked a wave of anti-Semitic threats.



Israel distributes food aid to refugees in South Sudan – Itamar Eichner

An Israeli Foreign Ministry delegation headed by Ambassador to South Sudan Hanan Godar recently distributed 20 tons of food to refugees affected by the civil war there.  Godar also announced that Israel will receive 60 students from South Sudan for agricultural training in the coming year, up from 20 students last year.



Shell in talks to buy Israeli gas – Sonia Gorodeisky

Global energy giant Shell is in talks to buy gas from the Israeli Leviathan and Cypriot Aphrodite reservoirs in the Mediterranean in a $25 billion deal over ten years, Bloomberg reported on Thursday (8th).  Shell, which owns the EDCO natural gas liquefaction plant in Egypt, will then be able to liquify the gas and sell it all over the world.  “If a deal is signed, it will…remove any fear of excess supply of gas in the local market,” an energy industry source said.