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Israel Update 29.8.19

IRAN IN DIRECT CONFLICT AGAINST ISRAEL

Israeli fighter jets carried out airstrikes in Syria to thwart a planned attack on Israel by Iran-backed fighters using armed drones late Saturday, targeting operatives from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ Quds Force as well as Shiite militias who had been planning on sending “kamikaze” attack drones into Israel armed with explosives. Read more here

 

Iranian officials planned the attack on Israeli targets with explosive-laden drones…The IDF blames the Syrian regime for allowing Iranian activity on its territory and cooperating with the Iranian militias…IDF sources said the decision to publicize its preventive attack was due to the fact that this was a specific terrorist attack rather than an attack on a military target or to prevent the transfer of weapons. “The Iranians were planning to kill Israeli soldiers and civilians with explosives on our own territory – and this is not something that we can keep quiet about,” the IDF said. Read more here

 

BEIRUT ATTACK

 

Early Sunday, two drones appeared in over Hizbullah’s stronghold Beirut…According to a report, two trucks seen in flames after the explosion had been carrying crates with machinery to mix high-grade propellant for precision-guided missiles. An Iranian-made industrial mixer was seriously damaged and its computerized control mechanism was totally destroyed. Hizbullah officials had made a conscious decision to transfer the center of gravity of the precision-missile project from Syria to the heart of Beirut. Read more here

 

IRANIAN SUPPORT FOR HEZBOLLAH

 

Iran’s foreign ministry delivers $100 million in cash to Hizbullah annually. Iranian diplomats arrive in Beirut via commercial flights carrying suitcases stuffed with dollars and hand them over to Hizbullah officials.The money is categorized as diplomatic mail, while the couriers have immunity provided by their diplomatic passports. Read more here

TERRORIST ATTACKS CONTINUED

An Israeli father and his two children were targeted on Friday by an explosive device at a West Bank hiking spot. Rina Shenrav (Shnerb), 17, of Lod, was killed. Her father, Eitan, 46, and brother, Dvir, 19, were taken to hospital in serious condition.                  Read more here

 

The Hamas leader praised the bombing perpetrators, calling Rina’s murder “a heroic attack.” Islamic Jihad said “resistance lives and is expanding.”  Read more here

 

Previous week:

Two Palestinian minors stabbed a policeman near the Temple Mount, before being shot by security forces. Footage showed the attackers, aged 14 & 17, holding knives and suddenly stabbing the policeman. Read more here

 

Two Israelis were hit by a car while standing at a West Bank bus stop. A 17-year-old boy was seriously wounded, remaining unconscious, and a woman, 19, was moderately hurt. The attacker was shot dead by security forces at the scene. Read more here

 

A Palestinian man was arrested after trying to strangle an Israeli Interior Ministry employee at the Allenby Terminal crossing between the West Bank and Jordan..The attack was recorded by security cameras. Read more here

 

GAZA

 

At least three rockets were fired at Israeli communities near the Gaza border on Sunday night, including Sderot, where 4,000 people were attending a music festival. Videos showed Iron Dome rocket interceptions above the event. The concert was cancelled as attendees sought shelter. Separate video showed rocket fragments striking a multi-story building in Sderot. In response, the IDF hit Hamas military targets. Read more here

Video (1 min 20 sec) showing Israelis evacuating from the concert while mothers tried to shield their children. Read more here

And see Comment by Adele Raemer below

 

Gazan terrorists fired four mortar shells at Israel on Tuesday, with one of them landing inside Israeli territory.  In response, an Israeli aircraft bombed a Hamas observation post. Read more here

 

A rocket fired towards Israel by Gazan terrorists on Wednesday night, fell short, landing inside Gaza. But the rocket launch triggered sirens in a neighbouring Israeli community  interrupting a night-time swimming event and sending dozens of children rushing to bomb shelters. Read more here

 

At least 327 people have received treatment from mental health services across communities bordering the Gaza Strip this summer due to post-traumatic stress disorder caused by the surge in border violence. Read more here

 

Previous week

 

Armed Gazan terrorists were engaged by IDF troops on 17/8 as they attempted to breach the Israel-Gaza border. Three were killed. Read more here

 

A Gazan terrorist approached the Gaza security fence late 22/8  hurling several grenades at IDF soldiers and was and stopped by the troops. Read more here

 

Gazans fired at least one rocket into Israel on Friday night 16/8, which was intercepted by the Iron Dome defence system. They fired three more on Saturday night, two of which were intercepted. Fragments from one of the Gaza rockets struck the yard of a home in Sderot, causing damage. Read more here

 

Two more rockets were launched at Israel from Gaza late Wednesday and early Thursday 21 & 22/8. Israel responded with airstrikes on Hamas targets. Six rockets were fired from Gaza in the previous seven days. Read more here

 

Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad collectively possess more than 20,000 rockets which they plant in the heart of Gaza’s civilian neighbourhoods and point at Israeli cities. Read more here

 

A fire in southern Israel on Monday was started by an incendiary balloon flown over the border from the Gaza Strip. Read more here

 

ARSON TERROR ON NORTHERN BORDER

 

In footage aired on Israeli TV, Hizbullah operatives can be seen setting fires near Israel’s border with Lebanon… Strong winds quickly fanned the flames and caused the brush fire to cross the border and spread toward an IDF base and an Israeli community.  UN peacekeepers can be seen patrolling near the fires, but making no attempt to stop the Hizbullah men from setting fires.                   Read more here

 

JERUSALEM

 

Honduras and the Republic of Nauru have both recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.Read more here   and here

 

DEFENCE

 

Israel has developed anti-drone technology that can seize control of enemy unmanned aerial vehicles and land them anywhere.      Read more here

 

BRAZIL

 

Brazil’s President Bolsonaro has accepted Israel’s offer of a plane and flame retardant materials for firefighting operations in the Amazon. Read more here

 

NEW ZEALAND

 

New Zealand has now joined the Swiss, Dutch, and Belgium governments in suspending donations to UNRWA. Read more here

 

THE UK

 

More evidence has emerged that the UK Department for International Development (DFID) must have known that the money it paid to the Palestinian Authority was being spent on salaries for convicted terrorists and their families, as well as on families of suicide bombers. Read more here

 

CHINA

 

The Chinese Academy of Sciences has announced that it will establish its first centre of excellence outside China at Israel’s Bar-Ilan University, constructing a nanotechnology research laboratory specializing in nano-medicine and printing two-dimensional materials Read more here

 

TECHNOLOGY

 

Porsche has announced that it is investing in the Israeli startup TriEye, which has developed sensor tech that works in low-visibility conditions such as fog, rain, and dust. Read more here

 

62 countries are known to have land mine contamination. At the current rate of mine clearance, some estimate it will take over 200 years to clear the world…. A start-up founded by two former officers from the IDF Combat Engineering Corps offers a new approach to mine clearance based on artificial intelligence and autonomous robots. Read more here

 

An Israeli company, Blue Green, treated algae blooms at Chippewa Lake, Ohio – the first lake in the U.S. to test this technology. A blue powder distributed by boat was successful in killing all of the toxic algae in the lake within a day. Read more here

 

MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY

 

Israeli startup Sight Diagnostics has developed a medical device that allows physicians and nurses to get results of a standard blood count test in 10 minutes from a drop of blood, without having to send the samples to a lab for processing. Read more here

 

THE PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY

 

The P.A. banned members of the LGBTQ community from carrying out any activities in the West Bank, after the grassroots group Al-Qaws for Sexual & Gender Diversity in Palestinian Society was planning to hold a gathering in Nablus. Read more here

 

SPORT

Israeli judoka Sagi Muki, 27 of Netanya, competing in the under 81 kg. weight category, won the gold medal at the Judo World Championship in Tokyo. Read more here

 

Israeli rhythmic gymnast Linoy Ashram, 20, was awarded one gold medal, one silver and two bronze at the World Challenge Cup in Minsk, Belarus. Read more here

 

COMMENT & OPINION

 

Amos Yadlin: A wide, multi-dimensional (geographic, operational, intelligence, and technological) campaign is being waged in the Middle East, far beyond Israel’s latest strike in Syria to foil an Iranian drone attack…This is an Israeli-Iranian conflict in Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon (and Yemen and Saudi Arabia?) with both significant Russian and American forces present, and their discontent about the events. So far, all remains under the threshold of war, but a consistent escalation control is vital…Israel’s decision to take responsibility for the attack in Syria signals a warning to the enemy to avoid further escalation and increases readiness of our forces for an Iranian response. Read more here

 

Felicia Schwartz: Israel’s shadowy military campaign against Iran has burst into the open with expanded strikes on Tehran’s allies in Syria and Iraq…Current and former Israeli military officials say Israel’s expanded actions stem from a long term effort to disrupt the spread of Iranian military equipment that Hizbullah could use to attack Israel. Israel is also increasingly worried about Iran’s ability to use Iraq as a staging ground. Read more here

 

Adele Raemer: (a resident of Southern Israel near Gaza)

Make no mistake about it. Last night, in Sderot, there was a multi-casualty terror attack. Thousands of people are traumatized today: children whose emotional wounds caused by the panic of rockets exploding so close to a crowded venue where there was limited freedom for movement and limited opportunity for escape and virtually no saferooms…And it so easily could have been a physical mass-casualty terror attack. If the rockets had exploded in the middle of the crowd, there would have been many deaths and physically wounded. Even if just the shrapnel from the Iron Dome that downed the Hamas rocket, had landed in the crowd, it would have been deadly. Read more here