Israel Update: 10 January 2018

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P.M. Netanyahu on Tuesday speaking to NATO member state ambassadors to Israel said that there are  “are important areas where Israel contributes to the security of every single NATO country.” adding that “We have, through our intelligence services, provided information that has stopped several dozen major terrorist attacks, many of them in European countries. Some of these could have been mass attacks, of the worst kind that you have experienced on the soil of Europe and even worse, because they involve civil aviation. Israel has prevented that, and thereby helped save many European lives,”




Rabbi Raziel Shevach, 35, an Israeli father of six, was murdered on Tuesday evening when his vehicle was targeted by terrorists in a passing car on Route 60, the main highway in the West Bank. Rabbi Shevach was a volunteer at Magen David Adom and at a chevra kadisha .


The US ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, launched a scathing attack on the Palestinians and their leadership on Wednesday, blaming them squarely for the lack of peace with Israel. He said: “An Israeli father of six was killed last night in cold blood by Palestinian terrorists. Hamas praises the killers and PA laws will provide them financial rewards,”


The Palestinian Authority spent $358 million on payments to terrorists and their families in 2017, an amount representing 7% of the PA’s total budget and an increase from the $322 million spent in 2016. Terrorists serving a life sentence receive a monthly stipend of $2,900. In comparison, the average monthly salary of Palestinians in the West Bank is $580.
Defence Minister Lieberman said:  “The P.A. pays terrorists and their families over a billion shekels a year, thus encouraging and perpetuating terrorism,”


Two Czech tourists were rescued by Israeli police after they took a wrong turn and drove into a West Bank Palestinian village on Tuesday. A number of Palestinians threw rocks, damaging the tourists’ car.



Two female Bedouin Israeli teenagers were indicted on Monday on charges they were planning to carry out a New Year’s eve attack on behalf of the Islamic State terrorist group. A 24-year-old East Jerusalem man was also charged on Monday of lesser counts in connection with the plot.


Border Police on Monday arrested a Palestinian woman who was found to be carrying a knife as she approached a checkpoint near the Cave of the Patriarchs holy site in the West Bank city of Hebron.




A team of Israeli specialists has arrived in Zambia to help deal with the cholera problem. Their main task is the deployment of technology to deal with water purification and treatment to eliminate the bacteria that causes cholera.



As Trump moved last month to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, an Egyptian intelligence officer Capt. Ashraf al-Kholi quietly placed phone calls to the hosts of several influential talk shows in Egypt, telling them that strife with Israel was not in Egypt’s national interest and that instead of condemning the decision, they should persuade their viewers to accept it…Palestinians, he suggested, should content themselves with Ramallah which currently houses the Palestinian Authority. “How is Jerusalem different from Ramallah, really?” Captain Kholi asked repeatedly in four audio recordings of his telephone calls obtained by The New York Times. “Exactly that,” agreed one host, who confirmed the authenticity of the recording.

In a recent speech at Tel Aviv University, Egyptian sociologist Saad Eddin Ibrahim, 79, Egypt’s foremost social scientist advocated further normalization with Israel, suggesting the country should be economically integrated into the Arab Middle East. He was participating in an academic conference about Egyptian society. A small group of Israeli Arabs tried to disrupt his speech, then stormed out.


Rami Aziz, an Egyptian researcher and political analyst, responded to the protestors (item above) saying: “Millions of students in the Arab world envy you, you should thank God that you live in Israel, you bunch of hypocrites and liars,” adding “Only in Israel can Arab students shout at an Egyptian lecturer that he is a traitor for coming to a Zionist university. And what exactly are they doing at a Zionist university? There is no limit to the hypocrisy, disgust and aggravation of Israeli Arabs. How much can you bite the hand that feeds you?”




A Hebrew University archaeology doctoral student described how Palestinian tractors and bulldozers arrived at an archaeological site where the ancient city of Archelaus once stood. They completely levelled the compound to locate hidden archaeological treasures to sell in the antiquities market. He compared the “deliberate and systematic destruction of an archaeological site” to ISIS activities in Iran & Syria.




A Tel Aviv University study that set out to find what makes some pancreatic cancer patients more likely to survive the deadly disease than others hopes to use the results to develop an effective cocktail of drugs to fight the aggressive cancer as well as other types.




SuperMeat, an Israeli startup developing lab-made chicken meat raised $3 million in seed funding and has formed a strategic partnership with a European poultry producer. SuperMeat say that their process puts an end to the industrial need to mass produce animals for slaughter, while eliminating exposure to animal waste and food-borne illnesses,”

The new funding would help bring its chicken products to market within three years at a price similar to conventional chicken products.



Swedish furniture giant Ikea will be opening its fourth store in Israel, in the southern city of Beersheba



The “drop tomato”, a new variety of cherry tomato,  is about the size of a blueberry and the Kedma company in the Arava desert says it is the smallest one ever cultivated in Israel, perhaps even in the world.




Israel intends to revive the Hejaz railway linking the Israeli port of Haifa to the Gulf states. Israeli Minister of Intelligence and Transportation Katz said, “We will extend the track that connects Haifa and Beit Shean to the King Hussein Bridge; the Jordanians will extend it to connect to the Saudi railways.”




Elias Zarina: Born and raised in the Christian Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem, I am certain that Israel is the only country in the region where Christians are thriving…The Christian exodus from Palestinian cities, including Bethlehem, is evidence of their maltreatment and their feelings of insecurity. However, in Israel, the Christian community continues to grow in numbers. Christians in Israel enjoy economic prosperity, independent educational systems with some of the country’s most successful schools, a great health system, and full civil rights. It is for this reason that a growing number of Christians choose to enlist in the Israel Defence Forces, study, and live here