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Israel Update 13.3.19

This Update is continuing to highlight the attacks on Israeli communities close to the Gaza Border and the IDF soldiers protecting them, as this topic is virtually unreported outside Israel. HRG

 

GAZA

 

A cluster of balloons launched from Gaza, carrying a missile warhead for the first time, landed in Israel on Saturday. Israeli police sappers carried out a controlled explosion.  On Friday, a rocket from Gaza landed in Israel. In response, the Israel Air Force carried out several strikes on Hamas targets in Gaza.

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Two bombs attached to balloons landed in Israel on Monday morning.

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Two Gazans armed with a knife and hand grenade, infiltrated into Israel from the northern Gaza Strip on Friday afternoon, prompting a large-scale call-up of security personnel in the area before the pair were eventually arrested. Also on Friday afternoon thousands of  Gazans rioted at several sites along the border, attacking Israeli soldiers on the other side of the security fence with improvised explosives and rocks.

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SYRIA, HIZBULLAH AND THE GOLAN

 

Syria has threatened to attack Israel unless it withdraws from the Golan Heights.

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IDF tweet: Ali Musa Daqduq, a senior Hizbullah operative, has been operating a newterror cell on the Syrian Golan Heights aimed at striking Israel. Daqduq was responsible for the abduction and execution of 5 American servicemen in Iraq in 2007. The IDF is not going to allow Hizbullah to establish a terror infrastructure on the Golan capable of striking Israeli civilians. (Embedded video 1 minute 40 seconds)

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The Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah terrorist group has recruited villagers residing in the Syrian Golan Heights in recent months to carry out preparations and intelligence gathering for operations on the border with Israel. The Hezbollah recruits who receive monthly wages have engaged in reconnaissance efforts and are equipped with anti-tank missiles, explosives, machine guns and other arms.

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US Senator Lindsey Graham visiting the Golan said: “Israel occupied this territory by fighting for its survival…“This territory was taken by military force because it was used as a launching point to attack the State of Israel,” emphasizing that it is a strategic location and that now is the time for the US and other countries to recognize the Golan as part of Israel… Israel has done everything in its power to extend rights to the Druze residents of the Golan. Druze communities can elect their own representatives in four villages. At the same time the region has become a thriving part of Israel. It also has a vibrant Jewish history, with many ancient synagogues.

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NOTE: Syria controlled the Golan for only 21 years from formal independence in 1946 until 1967: before 1946 the ridge was part of a French mandate (after Britain lopped it off a British mandate in 1923 and ceded it to France.)

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JERUSALEM

 

Palestinian Arabs attacked an Israeli police station on the Temple Mount with a firebomb on Tuesday, sparking an afternoon riot. A police officer was injured by smoke inhalation. The al-Aqsa compound was closed for the remainder of the day but reopened on Wednesday. Israel accused the Palestinian Authority of inciting a religious war.

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INTERNATIONAL DEFENCE

 

The U.S. Army awarded Elbit Systems of America, a subsidiary of Israel’s Elbit, a five-year contract for its wide field-of-view Common Helmet Mounted Display (CHMD) system.The full-colour CHMD systems will give Army helicopter pilots enhanced situational awareness in day and night conditions, as well as improving survivability.
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Israeli defence robotics company Roboteam will supply 40 tactical robotic systems to the Arma dei Carabinieri, Italy’s military police force. Roboteam’s ground robotic systems for law enforcement and military are used to handle suspicious objects and dangerous materials and intelligence collection.The company lists the U.S., Israel, the UK, Canada, Thailand, Japan, Korea, and Switzerland among its clients.

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INDIA

 

Israeli irrigation technology developer Netafim has been selected to construct four large community irrigation projects in India, connecting almost 60,000 farmers in over 100 towns to advanced agricultural technology.

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UNHCR INQUIRY FINDINGS REJECTED

 

The NGO UN Watch rejected the findings expressed by the UN’s Gaza inquiry at their recent press conference for eight reasons including the fact that the report considered only threats to Palestinian life, omitting any discussion or consideration of the threats to Israeli life, metres from the border fence. And the report ignored serious Hamas violations, including massive incitement to terrorism, the use of women and children as human shields, recruitment and training of child soldiers, and disguising Hamas fighters as civilians. The report failed even to find Hamas responsible for the launching of incendiary kites,

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PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY TV & INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY

 

To mark International Women’s Day, PA TV broadcast an interview with the Director of the Palestinian Women’s Union in Gaza who highlighted  the important role Palestinian women have played in violence and terror by praising  “female martyrs” who had murdered Israelis and who had prepared bombs for terrorist attacks.

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COUNTER TERRORISM

 

Israel’s Border Police arrested seven members of a terror cell responsible for multiple attacks on the Kalandiya checkpoint near Jerusalem with explosives and Molotov cocktails.

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ATTACKS THWARTED

 

IDF soldiers spotted a Palestinian man armed with a knife as he ran toward them in Hebron on Tuesday. The terrorist was shot dead as he tried to stab them. Later on Tuesday, Israeli troops arrested a Palestinian woman who approached them after she was found in possession of a knife.

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INNOVATION

 

OurCrowd held its biggest-yet annual Global Investor Summit in Jerusalem last week, welcoming some 18,000 guests from over 180 countries across the world, including tech entrepreneurs, government officials, and representatives from some 400 multinationals. The focus of the fifth annual event was on startups with a world-changing social impact and investment in tech and innovation that seeks to solve global challenges in fields such as healthcare, public safety, environment, mobility, cybersecurity, food, and agriculture.

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TECHNOLOGY

 

The Technion’s  (Israel’s Institute of Technology) Transportation Research Institute and Kayan, a feminist nonprofit organization, have developed Safarcon (Arabic for “your travels”), a new ridesharing application built specifically for women in the Arab-Israeli sector. The Arabic-language Safarcon is free to users; it connects drivers with passengers who need to reach the same destination. Ninety-eight percent of women in Israel’s Arab villages have access to a smartphone.

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RightHear, an Israeli application which is already helping people with visual impairments to find their way through 1,000 large venues such as malls and airports is now providing audio orientation to Israelis in their local McDonald’s restaurant, making McDonald’s Israel the first restaurant chain in the world to offer full access to customers with orientation challenges.

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COMMENT & OPINION

 

Liat Collins:For the past year, Gazans have been waging a new method of war. Every Friday, thousands gather on the border with Israel, try to breach the fence, throw explosive devices at troops and threaten to kidnap and kill Israelis. The protests are being portrayed as nonviolent rallies, although their slogan “The Great March of Return” makes their aim clear. It is part of the Palestinians’ war on Israel. Last summer, the Gazans took their campaign to new heights, sending hundreds of kites across the border…attached to incendiary devices, which landed in neighbouring fields, nature reserves and woods, burning thousands of acres, killing wildlife and destroying natural habitats. Hamas’s scorched-earth war plans were so successful that the Gazans “improved” their methods, attaching flammable devices to balloons, helium-filled condoms, and – in at least a couple of cases – to kestrels.

(A recent IDF) report… notes that mines and booby-trapped explosive devices with delayed detonation mechanisms are laid along the fence during the riots under the cover of smoke and crowds, and “pose a direct threat to the lives and safety of IDF forces operating in the border area.”

 

THE UNITED Nations Human Rights Council has responded to the events in Gaza with its own declaration of war against Israel. On March 18, the council is expected to pass five resolutions condemning Israel, continuing its tradition of singling out the Jewish state. (Also)… a special commission will present seven separate reports alleging Israeli war crimes…on February 28, the UNHRC presented preliminary findings of one of the reports, alleging that some of the Israeli response “may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity.”
Keep in mind that the incendiary and explosive-laden balloons, not to mention the rockets, are being launched on Israeli civilian targets. But that apparently is no war crime, according to the UN.

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Daniel S Mariaschin: Iran has incessantly called for the elimination of Israel throughout the 40 years of its revolution.. Iran always makes sure to mark the sides of the missiles it tests with the threat “Israel Must Be Wiped Out.” Today, there are numerous border disputes in the world between neighbours, but Israel is the only country to be incessantly threatened with annihilation. Read more here

 

Khaled Abu Toameh: The possibility of some Arab countries normalizing their relations with Israel has prompted the Palestinians to wage a campaign titled: “Normalization is a Crime,” aimed at pressuring Arab leaders to refrain from such moves…It serves as a reminder that even if some Arabs do sign peace treaties with Israel, there will always be those Muslims who will denounce them as “traitors” and accuse them of acting against Islam. In light of this threat, it is hard to see how Abbas or any Palestinian leader would be able to agree to any form of reconciliation and normalization with the “Zionist enemy.” Abbas is acutely aware that Muslims will condemn him.. if he ever dares to make peace with the Jews

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Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Dr. Shimon Shapira: Hizbullah’s operational infrastructure recently discovered in the Syrian Golan Heights is an expression of leader Hassan Nasrallah’s determination to build another front in the war against Israel.

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