Israel Update: 2.8.2018
Last Thursday evening 29/7, a Palestinian terrorist (17), climbed over the fence around the Israeli community of Adam, 5 km. from Jerusalem, and stabbed to death Yotam Ovadia, 31, the father of two young children. He also critically wounded a 50-year-old man and lightly wounded another before being killed
The terrorist has been designated as a “martyr” by the Palestinian Authority. Under PA policy, the families of Palestinians who die as “martyrs” are entitled to a grant of $1,600, as well as a monthly allowance.
The P.A. condemned “with the strongest words” the U.S. Ambassador to Israel after Friedman paid a condolence visit Monday to the family of Yotam Ovadia. Friedman said during the visit, “A young woman left alone to care for two toddlers, parents mourning their only son. There are no words that can describe the evil and barbarity of this act of terror.”
ARSON TERRORISM CONTINUES
Israel opened an exhibition at UN headquarters to show the damage caused in Israeli communities near the Gaza border by fires from the incendiary balloons and kites sent by Palestinians, including “before” and “after” photos.
Ten American firefighters have arrived in Israel to help battle the blazes and another 50 are on standby. One said. “Just yesterday, we had two very large fires near Gaza. One we had to call in the bulldozers. We called in the fire planes. We also called in the fire helicopters. It wasactually the first time I’ve ever worked with all three of those pieces of equipment at the same time on the same fire.”
Israel’s Defence Minister ordered a freeze on all fuel and gas shipments into Gaza in response to continued incendiary balloon attacks and ongoing violence along the Israel-Gaza border. Firefighters battled seven fires near the Gaza border caused by incendiary balloons, which have landed as far as the city of Beersheba, 25 miles from Gaza.
Fires are breaking out daily – a few examples;
At least 10 fires broke out on Friday; a college and a kibbutz were among the places threatened. https://www.timesofisrael.com/incendiary-balloons-from-gaza-spark-fires-at-college-and-kibbutz/
Seven fires broke out on Sunday in the Gaza border region. https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-5319136,00.html
Firefighting forces, with help from the IDF, battled six fires in the Gaza border area Saturday. https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-5318571,00.html
Firefighters in Israel battled 19 new fires sparked by incendiary balloons launched from Gaza on Tuesday.
More Hamas incendiary balloons launched from Gaza. Luckily this time they burnt out before landing on a power grid. Dramatic photo. https://www.facebook.com/theisraelproject/photos/a.279044817315.179332.73528002315/10157458837927316/?type=3&theater
Two PFLP terrorists who died in Gaza on Sunday were killed in an accidental explosion and not by Israeli fire as first claimed, the Gaza Health Ministry said.They tried to fire a rocket at Israel and were killed when it exploded. https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-gaza-health-ministry-two-palestinians-killed-by-explosion-not-israel-1.6318717
7,000 Gazans took part in riots in several locations along the Gaza border on Friday, burning tyres, and hurling rocks and explosive devices, including pipe bombs, a Molotov cocktail and a grenade, toward troops who responded with crowd dispersal measures, as well as live fire, in accordance with IDF rules of engagement. Two Gazans were killed during the violent demonstration. https://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Two-Palestinians-killed-as-7000-riot-along-Gaza-border-563608
On July 29, the indigenous Maori people of New Zealand organized a special ceremony to welcome the Israeli ambassador, Dr. Itzhak Gerberg. The ceremony of apology was held to express regret for New Zealand’s actions in standing against Israel at the UN and to seek forgiveness. http://www.jwire.com.au/maoris-apologise-to-israel/
A four-person delegation from the African, organization Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA)visited Israel to see how Israeli agricultural technologies can help farmers in Africa. https://www.timesofisrael.com/delegation-seeks-israeli-startups-to-help-african-farmers-boost-crops/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
Uganda’s Health Minister has hailed the Israeli government for supporting health services delivery in the country at the commissioning of a diabetes clinic at Kiboga Hospital, which was established with support from Israel.Israel is also undertaking a bigger project at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Mulago National Referral Hospital. http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Government-hails-Israel-health-services/688334-4687692-12sldj3/index.html
Affordable surgical devices and water, energy and cellular phone projects are the Israel-India initiatives that are to receive funding from a joint technology innovation fund set up by the two nations to boost collaboration between researchers and firms. https://www.timesofisrael.com/first-israel-india-projects-get-green-light-from-joint-40-million-tech-fund/
Oriental fruit fly infestation causes over $3 billion in damage yearly to India’s $9.2-billion mango industry. Israeli firm Biofeedoffers an environment-friendly and non-hazardous technology to reduce infestations.
Israel struck seven armed ISIS terrorists who were 200 meters from the Israeli border in an air strike on the Syrian-held Golan Heights overnight Wednesday, the army confirmed on Thursday. Elite IDF troops found seven bodies with grenades, 5 Kalashnikov rifles and suicide vests, among other items. https://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/IAF-killed-7-militans-in-overnight-strikes-in-Syrian-Golan-Heights-564016
Israel has asked Russia to ensure that Syrian government forces do not harm or massacre civilians as they complete their takeover of the area bordering Israel’s Golan Heights https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-trying-to-prevent-a-massacre-in-syria-report/
Note: Israel & Jordan signed a peace treaty in 1994.
Jordanian activists organised a sit-in in front of the Ministry of Tourism to denounce “promoting normalisation of tourism with the Israelis”, demanding to sever ties with Israel at all levels. http://www.jordantimes.com/news/local/activists-denounce-‘normalising’-israeli-tourism-jordan
The (Jordanian) Professional Associations Council organized a demonstration, protesting the ongoing construction of a 65-km. pipeline to link Jordan’s north to Israel. The pipeline will distribute gas to power plants across the Kingdom to generate electricity.The government said the deal to purchase gas from the Israeli Leviathan field would save nearly $1 billion (JD700 million) annually on Jordan’s energy bill.
EXTRACTS FROM A SPEECH BY US PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE TO THE U.N. NIKKI HALEY:
“The United States has no moral duty to be neutral between right and wrong. On the contrary, we have a moral duty to take sides, even when that means standing alone.”
“We respect everyone’s right to peacefully protest. But no one should be fooled about the role of Hamas. Many of the protesters in Gaza are anything but peaceful. If they were peaceful, there would be no burning tires, there would be no Molotov cocktails, there would be no flaming swastika kites flying into Israel burning thousands of acres of land. And of course, if this was a peaceful movement, there would not be hundreds of rockets fired from Gaza into Israel.”
“Like any country would do, Israel has responded to the violence at its border. What is so stunning is the international reaction to all of this. Think about it. If there were tens of thousands of people looking to attack your border fence, and you had a terrorist group providing guidance on how best to kill innocent civilians inside your country once the border fence was broken, what would you do? What would the United States do? What would any country do?…Israel has acted with more restraint than just about any other country would under those same conditions.” https://usun.state.gov/remarks/8528
COMMENT & OPINION
David Horowitz: Since Israel unilaterally withdrew from Gaza in 2005, Hamas has fired thousands of rockets indiscriminately into Israel, dug attack tunnels under the border, killed and wounded soldiers at the border fence, carried out suicide bombings and other acts of terrorism, and most recently is flying arson devices – kites and balloons – across the border to burn our lands…
Hamas threatens that if we don’t lift the blockade that Israel (and Egypt) impose on the territory it controls, it’ll keep on attacking us. If we do lift that blockade, it is patently obvious, Hamas will immediately bring in more of the weaponry it needs in order to pursue its declared goal of destroying us.
It is quite astonishing to hear those who argue that Israel should ease the restrictions on access it imposes on Gaza – that is, that Israel should cooperate in its own destruction.
For weeks, Hamas has been mobilizing the Gaza masses to damage and break through the border fence. Defending that border, the Israeli army has killed 140 people – dozens of them Hamas members. Nobody would be dead, however, were it not for the Hamas-instigated violence.
Obviously, Israel is going to defend its border against terrorist attack. Obviously, Israel is going to retaliate when it comes under assault. And obviously, Israel is not going to lift the security blockade it imposes on Gaza so long as Hamas runs the Strip
David Gerstman: When the United States, Canada, and the European Union wanted someone to rescue members of the Syrian Civil Defence organization, also known as the White Helmets, from southwestern Syria last week, who did they call? Israel. And Israel came through when it comes to aiding the security goals of the West, Israel has recently been quite helpful. And Israel’s help has been extended in situations that are not as close by and many times more complex…One can only hope that this appreciation of Israel’s capabilities turns into greater sympathy towards Israel when it identifies and defends itself against threats that don’t threaten others.
Jason Greenblatt, the president’s Special Representative for International Negotiations, said: “I think there’s a disconnect between many on the Palestinian street in the West Bank and their leadership. I’ve met a lot of Palestinians in the last year and a half, young, middle aged, etc. They want a better life. They’re not thumping on the table, incitement kind of people.””They are people who are nationalistic, to be sure. I’m not going to say that they don’t want their own state; most do. But they also want their leaders to stop being defiant and stop wasting time running around the world trying to get paper victories and try to resolve the conflict, so that they can get a home, a job, pay their mortgage, send their kids to school.
ISRAEL’S NATION STATE LAW
Bicom Briefing: Following the passing of the Nation-State Bill into law, BICOM’s research team has produced a briefing that analyses the legislation’s impact, details what its supporters and opponents have said and explores the domestic political context of the new law.
Shoshanna Keats Jaskoll: To fully understand the creation of Israel’s new nation-state law, one must go back to 2006-2007, when major Arab-Israeli NGOs released three significant publications….which sought veto power on national issues, the right of return for Palestinian refugees, and, critically, the annulment of Israel’s Jewish character. They recommended two states – not one Jewish and one Palestinian, but one, a secular bi-national state of Jews and Arabs, and one exclusively Palestinian.These publications put Israel’s Jewish character at risk, since the nature of the Jewish state had no legal definition in court. Israel does not have a constitution, but it does have 12 Basic Laws, ten of which deal with its democratic nature and civil liberties. Not one affirms Israel’s Jewish character. Until last week.