News Digest — 9/9/22

Israel Mourns The Death Of Queen Elizabeth II

Prime Minister Yair Lapid mourned Queen Elizabeth II’s passing on Thursday evening (8th), saying the British monarch left behind an “unparalleled legacy.”

“On behalf of the government and people of Israel, I send my condolences to the Royal family and the people of the United Kingdom on the death of her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” Lapid tweeted.

“She leaves behind an unparalleled legacy of leadership and service,” he wrote, adding, “May her memory be for a blessing.”

In a statement, President Isaac Herzog called her “a historic figure” who lived and made history.

“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was known far and wide simply as The Queen.  Her passing is the end of an era.  Together with the Israeli people, I grieve her loss and extend my deepest sympathies to the British people and all nations of the Commonwealth, who have lost their matriarch.”

He noted that his late father Chaim Herzog, who served as Israel’s sixth president, had several audiences with the Queen over the years.

“Her fond welcome and warm hospitality left a profound impression down through the generations,” he said.

Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called her “a beacon of integrity.”

“My wife Sara and I, along with all the people of Israel, send our condolences to the people of Britain and to the royal family on the passing of Queen Elizabeth II,” he wrote on Twitter.  “May her memory be blessed,” he added.

Former Prime Minister Naftali Bennett lauded Queen Elizabeth II as a “caring and thoughtful leader.”  “My thoughts and prayers are with the Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom as they mourn the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” Bennett said.

“For the past 70 years Her Majesty has served as a figure of dignity, honor and stability for her country and the world.  The people of Israel are grateful for Her Majesty’s service and hope she may rest in peace.”

Queen Elizabeth II was Britain’s longest reigning monarch.  Though she was well respected by Britain’s Jewish community, she came under fire for never visiting the State of Israel throughout her reign.



Massacre Thwarted As Arab Terrorist Carrying Two Bombs And A Submachine Gun Caught In Tel Aviv

A Palestinian terrorist armed with a submachine gun and two bombs was arrested by officers in the Arab-Jewish coastal city of Jaffa on Thursday (8th), on his way to committing a major terror attack in Tel Aviv, police said.

The 19-year-old resident of Nablus, who entered into Israel illegally, aroused the suspicion of officers from the Yassam special forces unit near the Jaffa clock tower who then arrested him.  He was carrying two pipe bombs filled with nails, police said, as well as a Palestinian manufactured ‘Carlo’ submachine gun, a weapon of choice for terrorists from Judea and Samaria, since they are untraceable.

Police bomb sappers defused the explosives.

The teen later admitted he was on his way to commit a large-scale attack and was looking for somewhere crowded, police said.

“He was looking to commit a massacre,” Police Chief Kobi Shabtai told reporters at the scene.

Shabtai hailed the Yassam officers for “preventing a huge and deadly terror attack.” 

Sharif Hason, one of the officers who arrested the terrorist described the incident:

“We were in Jaffa, we identified a suspicious person, stopped him and he admitted he was in Israel illegally.  He had a really heavy bag, and there was something metal poking out.  While checking it we saw it was a gun.  We told the guy to get down on the ground, and that he was under arrest,” he said.

The terrorist had just been released from a four-month prison sentence for bringing a knife onto the Temple Mount in Jerusalem in April.

Another suspect in the area was also detained.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid said police prevented a “significant terrorist attack.”

“The State of Israel will act forcefully and without compromise against those who try to harm us.  I commend the security forces for apprehending the terrorist in Tel-Aviv-Yafo and preventing a significant terror attack,” he said in a statement.

“We must continue to act with all the tools at our disposal to restore security and stability to the region.”

The statement also noted that Lapid held a security assessment earlier in the day at IDF headquarters to discuss the upsurge of terrorism, “the goal of which was to consider tools and immediate action to stabilize the security situation in Judea and Samaria and halt its deterioration.”



Palestinian School Books Deny Holocaust, Legitimize Munich Massacre

Children in the Palestinian Authority began their school year in September without the PA’s promised education reforms, so they will continue to use the same school books that have been heavily criticized for inciting hatred against Jews and Israel.

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Munich Olympic Massacre, Israel Hayom and the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education (IMPACT-se) – an NGO that analyzes school books and curricula for compliance with UNESCO-defined standards on peace and tolerance – conducted an analysis of current Palestinian school curriculum.  It revealed that history books in the PA and UNRWA schools laud and legitimize the tragedy, in which Palestinian terrorists murdered 11 Israeli athletes, describing it as “resistance” to Zionism, and “Zionist interests abroad.”

It also showed that textbooks on World War II omit the Holocaust entirely.  They cover the main events in detail, such as the German invasion of Poland, the battle of Britain, the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but not a word about the Wannsee Conference, concentration camps, or any other events related to the Holocaust.

Surprisingly, the German government is the main funder of the Palestinian education system, including textbooks.  The PA Education Ministry’s budget for the implementation of their plan comes from Germany, as well as Norway, Finland, and Ireland.

“Moreover, the new textbooks deliberately omit all the previous attempts for peace with Israel since the Oslo Accords.  Antisemitic messages were also found in the books,” IMPACT-se officials said.

Palestinian children are taught to believe that Judaism is a racist religion and that Jews control the media, politics, and finances.  Jews are depicted as liars, corrupt and “enemies of Islam at all times and places,” and as such should be eliminated.

The German Embassy in Ramallah confirmed in a statement that the country “does support Palestinian education, but does not finance the development or printing of the textbooks.”  

“We are in constant dialogue with the Palestinian side for further improvements in the education sector and the materials used in it,” the statement read.



Gaza Rights Groups Condemn Hamas Over “Collaborators” Executions

Human rights groups and the EU  have condemned the recent executions by Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, of five Palestinians, including two for “collaboration” with Israel.

The dawn executions, by hanging or firing squad, were the first carried out in the coastal enclave for more than five years.

On Sunday morning, September 4, the death sentence was carried out against two condemned collaborators with Israel and three others in criminal cases, Hamas said in a statement.

Sven Kuen Von Burgsdorff, the EU’s ambassador to the Palestinian territories expressed concern over the executions.

“Executions are cruel and inhuman and can under no circumstances be justified as they deny the victims human dignity,” the ambassador said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Yamen al-Madhoun, coordinator of the field research unit at the Gaza-based Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, denounced the executions as “an inhumane and non-deterrent punishment.”

Ramy Abdu, chairman of Euro-med Human Rights Monitor tweeted: “In violation of Palestinian law and international obligations, the ministry of interior in the Gaza Strip “today” carried out five death sentences against murderers and those communicating with the occupation.  We reject the death penalty in principle – it is a irreversible punishment.”

Gaza’s Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) said the executions were in “violation of the Palestinian international obligations.”

Since Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip, its courts have sentenced around 180 Palestinians to death.  The sentences are carried out publicly with hundreds of people watching.

Hamas has governed the more than 2.3 million Palestinians since 2007, following the outbreak of fighting between Fatah and Hamas, resulting in Hamas’ taking the enclave from Mahoud Abbas’ Fatah group in a coup.  



Muslim Leader Warns Of Rosh Hashanah Riots On Temple Mount

A Muslim-Israeli leader threatened violence on the Temple Mount if Jews visit the holy site during the Rosh Hashanah holiday at the end of September, Israel National News reported Thursday (8th).

Sheik Kamal Al-Khatib, deputy head of the northern faction of the Islamic Movement, which has been banned in Israel for its extremist stance against the Jewish state, said in a recent sermon at the Al-Aqsa Mosque that Jews are preparing to “desecrate the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah.” 

He alleged that they would do this by “blowing the shofar and wearing priests’ clothing.”  He also claimed that they intend to “bring animal sacrifices.”  This he said “will cause riots –  Al-Aqsa will never be the Temple and it will remain in Muslim hands.”

Al-Khatib has made threats many times over the years, in particular against Jews visiting the Temple Mount, calling such peaceful pilgrimages a “defilement” of the mosque and an “invasion.”

In his most recent speech, Al-Khatib asserted that “Palestinians have thwarted 19 plans to occupy the Mosque.”

Before Passover, when the movement called ‘Return to the Mount’ offered cash prizes to those who would even attempt to bring a lamb to the holy site to be ritually slaughtered as in the days of the Temple, the sheik issued a thinly veiled call for violence.

“Our people know exactly what is required of them, and appreciate the honor of the preparations in Al-Aqsa Mosque and in Jerusalem, in order to thwart the plans of the Jews and settlers,” he said at the time.

The cleric has been jailed repeatedly over the years for his anti-Israel rhetoric, which has included comparisons of Israel to “a louse which nests in the body of the Arab world and sucks its blood” and has compared rabbis to “fleas.”

Last year, Al-Khatib was arrested on charges of incitement and supporting a terrorist organization for praising, at rallies and on Facebook, the heavy Arab rioting in mixed Arab-Jewish cities that took place during the IDF’s Operation Guardian of the Walls against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

A month later, he was released from prison with a row of restrictions that included banning his use of the internet, speaking in public or giving interviews, and being in any gathering of more than 15 people.