Israel Update is taking a break for the next 2 weeks. I hope to be back on or around 25 August. HRG.
Islamic Jihad’s West Bank commander Bassam al-Saadi, was arrested by the IDF on Tuesday. Reportedly 50 of the group’s operatives have been detained and are undergoing questioning by the Israel Security Agency. Al-Saadi acquired funds and weapons, often with the help of Iran, to carry out deadly attacks against Israelis. He offered $300 for a successful attack, killing Israelis, and $100 for an unsuccessful attempt. Read more here
Following the capture of Saadi, Israel is entering its 3rd day of high alert along the Gaza border. The IDF said Thursday morning that it had received intelligence about an imminent Islamic Jihad revenge attack. Read more here
Under the hashtag “We Want To Live,” thousands of Gazans have revived a three-year-old digital campaign holding Hamas responsible for the economic, political and social problems in Gaza. Read more here
As in previous years, Hamas in Gaza is operating 500 summer camps for children and teens that champion armed struggle against Israel. The campers are given lessons on the use and maintenance of various weapons, and also use shooting simulators to practice targeting “Israeli soldiers.” Read more here
A 12 year old Gazan girl suffering with PTSD visited several towns & cities across Israel accompanied by her father. She met other children from Kibbutz Nir Am near Gaza where she and her father stayed throughout their 4-day visit. “We want to live like good neighbours, with love and cooperation,” her father said.Read more here
The P.A.is carrying out one of the largest political arrest campaigns in years in the West Bank, with at least 94 people arrested over the past two months, including university students and journalists, with at least 20 still in detention, according to the Ramallah-based Lawyers for Justice. None were charged with any offences. A sizeable number of detainees reported maltreatment and torture in detention. Read more here
The PA abuse of children and its process of recruiting them as child terrorists is once again thriving in its terrorist-training summer camps. At “the Buds of Construction and Liberation” summer camp, run by Fatah, hundreds of children had individual pictures taken holding AK-47 rifles. View photos here
Hamas has called on members of P.A. security forces in the West Bank to carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers. Last week an officer with the Palestinian Police opened fire at an IDF position. Read more here
Israel’s Education Minister announced the cancellation of the permanent licences of six schools in East Jerusalem due to incitement against Israel and the IDF. The schools were found to be using textbooks that included “the glorification of prisoners and their armed struggle against the State of Israel, conspiracy theories about withholding treatment from patients and intentional harm to medical staff etc. The schools will be given a conditional license for a year, during which they will be required to make changes to their curriculum . Read more here
Israeli NGO IsraAID has provided four reverse osmosis water filtration systems to the Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv, where the water infrastructure was severely damaged in the fighting with Russia in April. The Deputy Mayor noted that all Mykolaiv residents will have free, round-the-clock access to water.IsraAID will provide ongoing technical support to ensure long-term sustainability.Read more here
Israel has advanced plans to establish a joint Israeli-Jordanian industrial park straddling their border and connected by an existing bridge, in a sign of improving ties. The plan, dubbed the “Jordan Gateway,” will enable Israelis and Jordanians to “conveniently” cross between the sides to work on joint projects. Read more here
A member of the Jordanian junior women’s taekwondo team withdrew from a championship in Bulgaria on Sunday to avoid facing an Israeli opponent. Two months ago a Jordanian national fencer quit the World Junior Fencing Championship and last summer, a Jordanian national table tennis player withdrew from the World Table Tennis Championships, both also to avoid Israeli opponents. Read more here
(The peace treaty between Israel & Jordan was signed in 1994)
Israel’s top policeman Commissioner Shabtai became the first Israeli police chief to visit Morocco as part of an official trip. He held talks with senior police & security officials on improving law enforcement. Read more here
A team of Israeli researchers including immunologists & epidemiologists claims successfully to have identified antibody markers that are predictive of the risk of infection. Such tests could be used as screening tools to determine priority for the allocation of the first batches of updated vaccines.Read more here
An Israeli start-up Cardiokol is using over-the-phone analysis to detect atrial fibrillation, a common heart condition which is difficult to find on a standard screening ECG. Read more here
An automated Israeli-built system for predicting which IVF embryos are likely to result in pregnancies has received European approval for use in clinics, Tel Aviv-based Fairtility has reported.Read more here
An Israeli lab has grown synthetic mouse embryos with brains and beating hearts in an egg-free sperm-free procedure using stem cells taken from skin. The breakthrough is the first time that an advanced embryo of any species has been created from stem cells alone. The Weizmann Institute research team includes Jewish and Arab Israelis and a Palestinian doctoral student. Read more here
Israeli venture platform OurCrowd has announced a partnership with Philippine investment firm Einhorn Resources to help facilitate growth for Philippines’ startup companies, a first collaboration of its kind in the Philippines. Read more here
Israeli food tech company Redefine Meat has announced that its 3-D printed vegan flank steaks and other plant-based meat alternatives are to be introduced at several London restaurants including Mr. Whites, German Gymnasium, Chotto Matte, and Gillray’s Steakhouse and Bar.Read more here
Israeli food tech startup SavorEat, a maker of 3D-printed, plant-based meat alternatives, has launched new products this week including kosher, vegan, gluten-free, allergen-free pork patties and vegan turkey burgers. These join the company’s vegan beef burgers, which are already sold in Israel.Read more here
Israel’s Innoviz Technologies, a maker of sensors for self-driving cars, has won a contract to supply LiDAR technology and software to Volkswagen’s autonomous vehicles unit. Read more here
Tropx, a Haifa-based start-up is developing high-tech clothing designed to maximize athletic performance and minimize injuries by analysing athletes in real time and creating personalized gym training programs. For example, if an individual’s left knee is bent incorrectly as they work out, the interface will highlight the knee in red until the user adjusts their position. Read more here
Italian team AS Roma defeated Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 in Haifa on Saturday. Roma took time out from its training to visit the Western Wall in Jerusalem, with several of their stars taking the time to pray and place a note at the holy site. Read more here
Lionel Messi opened the scoring and Neymar scored twice, as Paris Saint-Germain beat French Cup winner Nantes 4-0 to win the Champions Trophy at Bloomfield Stadium in Tel Aviv on Sunday. The previous day, PSG visited Israel’s Save A Child’s Heart project, a non-profit organisation which performs cardiac operations on children worldwide. Team members met children involved with the group, signing autographs and posing for photos.
Save a Child’s Heart Read more here
Juventus and Atletico Madrid will meet for a friendly match at the 29,400-seat Bloomfield Stadium in Tel Aviv on August 7. Read more here
The Israeli Opera returns to Tel Aviv’s Ganei Yehoshua with a free performance of “Carmen” on August 18, with more than 250 singers, musicians and dancers onstage.read more here
Avi Benlolo: In the Israeli city of Karmiel on July 27, an Arab-Israeli leader laughed when I asked him about apartheid. He outlined his own success in Israel, having completed a graduate degree at an Israeli university, then having the freedom to travel to Jordan to earn a doctorate and to pursue a successful career as an educator and media personality.
Many of his friends are professionals like him and enjoy the benefits of being Israeli citizens. In fact, he ran in the last national election. Indeed, hardly anyone in Israel actually believes it is an apartheid state. Co-existence and peace is the language of most political and community leaders in Israel today.
The wasted energy and resources on negative campaigns that achieve nothing except hate and discord sadly misrepresents the seismic shift that’s now underway in the entire region. Read more here
Anne Bayefsky: In May 2021, after an 11-day conflict between Palestinian terrorists in Gaza and Israelis, the UN established a “Commission of Inquiry” on Israel with a permanent “ongoing” mandate to ferret out “systematic discrimination and repression.”
Three well-known biased actors were appointed as members of the inquiry who could be counted on to manufacture a guilty verdict: Navi Pillay as chair (former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights), Miloon Kothari (a former UN “expert”), and Chris Sidoti (a close associate of a top Palestinian organization and of Israel-bashing NGOs).
While UN rules specifically require that UN human rights “experts” are independent, impartial, and objective, each one was on record promoting the libel of apartheid and crimes against humanity regarding Israel and a proven anti-Israel zealot. In June 2022, the inquiry members presented their first report, which concluded that the actions of “Jewish Israelis” were the “root cause” of the conflict.
On July 25, 2022, an interview with commission member Miloon Kothari appeared on the website Mondoweiss where, referring to Israel, he said: “I would go so far as to raise the question as why are they even a member of the United Nations.” He referred to social media reaction to the inquiry controlled by “the Jewish lobby.”
Human Rights Council President Federico Villegas of Argentina called Kothari’s remarks “unfortunate” and said they “could reasonably be interpreted as the stigmatization of the Jewish people. Read more here