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December 8, 2016 / 8 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Benjamin Netanyahu’

Weeks before Demolition, Still No Cabinet Decision on Amona

Monday, November 28th, 2016

The Netanyahu Security Cabinet ended an overnight meeting early Monday morning without a conclusion as to the future of Amona, in Samaria.

Amona is a community of some 40 Jewish families in Samaria, slated by the Supreme Court for demolition on Dec. 25. The Ministerial Legislative Committee has decided unanimously to submit for the Knesset’s approval the Regulations Act compelling Arab claimants against Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria to accept market value for their land rather than force the demolition of the community – especially in cases when the Israeli government had been involved in establishing said communities.

The Knesset passed the bill in its initial form last week, with a majority of 58 to 51. Now a joint committee made up of the Constitution, Law and Justice and the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committees, chaired by MK Nissan Slomiansky (Habayit Hayehudi), is hectically busy amending and preparing the bill for a second vote at the Knesset plenum.

But Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud) and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) are still doubtful about the chances of the Regulations Act to pass muster at the Supreme Court.

A representative of Attorney General Avichai Madelblit told the joint committee last week that her office views the bill as inherently illegal and expects it to be knocked down on “constitutional grounds,” despite the fact the Israel does not have a constitution.

But Chairman Slomiansky declared that the new bill is dealing with issues that are at the heart of the Israeli democracy. “After 50 years, it’s time for the legislator to deal with our 450,000 representatives countrywide whose status is still suspended.”

David Israel

New Netanyahu-Supertanker Corruption Scandal Brewing [Satire]

Sunday, November 27th, 2016

Raviv Drucker of Channel 10 reported a new scandal this evening involving Prime Minister Netanyahu.

Drucker claims the Supertanker sent from the US to Israel, to fight the inexplicable fires burning down the country, was seen diverting from its flight path multiple times during the day and circling over the Prime Minister’s official residence at least three times.

Unnamed witnesses claim they saw the supertanker emptying its water tanks on the Prime Minister’s vehicles parked outside his homes in Caesarea, Jerusalem, the official government residence, and at the cabinet meeting in Haifa, thoroughly washing all the Prime Minister’s vehicles — completely at the taxpayers’ expense. One witness claimed the Prime Minister’s pool in Caesarea was also filled up by the Supertanker.

Drucker claimed that Sara Netanyahu had the plane fly over the vehicles at the official residence three times, as she wasn’t happy with the cleaning job the first two.

Peace Now co-founder Professor Amiram Goldblum claimed that Netanyahu was the main benefactor of bringing in the Supertanker, and that Netanyahu started the arson spree to get the free car washes.

The pilot denies any wrongdoing, and says he only opened the water valves in locations where he was told there were threats to human life and property. He could not recall who gave him the list of locations to fly over or why he circled over one location in Jerusalem so many times.

Minister Naftali Bennett said even if the Prime Minister’s cars were washed then it was for the good of Israel’s security, as that is the Prime Minister’s only concern.

Bennett added, if there really was corruption involved, then obviously the cars would have been waxed and polished too, which he points out they weren’t.

On that point, Raviv Drucker noted the unusual conversation between PM Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas, where Netanyahu thanked Abbas were sending over a few crews to help in Haifa, Caesarea and Jerusalem.

Netanyahu’s spokesperson said the phone call was to thank Abbas for his humanitarian gesture, and that the Arab crews sent over did not wax and polish the Prime Minister’s cars as Drucker was implying. Sara could just as easily had some cabinet members or MKs do that for her if she needed it.

There’s also a rumor that a former cleaning lady now in rehab who once interviewed for a job at the PM’s house saw Sara Netanyahu pass to a foreign diplomat a blank envelope with a free carwash coupon inside. This is still unconfirmed.

Technically, Raviv Drucker’s latest report became connected to the submarine scandal once the Prime Minister’s cars were submerged under the thousands of gallons of water that were dumped on them.

Netanyahu’s personal attorney, David Shimron who reportedly brokered the Supertanker deal, was unavailable for comment.

[Reminder: This is satire]

JoeSettler

Cabinet Holds Special Meeting in Fire Plagued Haifa

Sunday, November 27th, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu assembled his cabinet on Sunday morning in Haifa, the Israeli city that has suffered more than any other large urban center in the week of blazes, both the natural and the man made kind. The prime minister said: “First, I would like to commend the IDF soldiers who, this morning, successfully repelled an attack against in the border triangle area (where Israel, Lebanon and Syria meet). We are well prepared on our northern border and we will not allow any ISIS or other hostile elements, under cover of the war in Syria, to establish themselves adjacent to our borders.

“En route here this morning I spoke with Rama Ben-Tzvi; her and her husband’s restaurant in the Jerusalem hills was completely burnt. I think that we all know how much love they have invested in this, their life’s work, for 20 years, and in an instant, it went up in flames. The fire there and in other places burned property, it burned objects replete with memories, it even burned animals in some places, but to our joy, this time we were well-prepared and it did not burn lives; we saved lives. I told Rama that we would help her rebuild her restaurant forthwith. The Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office has already spoken to her. This, in effect, is our message to all Israeli citizens whose homes and property were hit by the fires: We will help you rebuild your homes and your lives forthwith and this is the main goal of this special Cabinet meeting this morning in Haifa.

“We have come to Haifa and we have invited council heads from across the north whose communities were affected by the fires in order to give them clear message: All government ministries are committed to extending a hand to you quickly, to shorten the bureaucracy, and I say to brutally shorten the bureaucracy, to bring you assistance, relief and rebuilding as soon as possible. In the meantime, we will do everything necessary to maintain your remaining property.

“Immediately upon concluding my remarks, I will ask my fellow ministers – the ministers of Public Security, Finance and Interior – who, I must say, from the outset, have worked tirelessly in the field, to report on their ministries’ activities.

“Later, I will ask the other ministers to do so. Of course, we will be measured by results and not by processes, by deeds and not words. We will be measured by results. The event is still not over. There are reports now of a fire in the Zichron area and several other locales, that seem as if they are rekindling. We are working on all fronts, including law enforcement. Whoever starts a fire, either by malice or negligence, whoever incites to arson – we will act against them with full force.

“There is no doubt that thanks to the courage of the firefighters, the pilots from Israel and abroad, and to the determined response of the Israel Police, MDA, IDF, Home front Command and the other rescue forces, the local councils represented here and the extraordinary spirit shown by Israeli citizens – thanks to all these, we achieved impressive control of the fires which, to a certain extent, were much more complicated and much more difficult than the Carmel fire.

“On Friday, I received a meteorological report, which indicated difficult conditions vis-à-vis dryness and the weather, the combination of temperatures and the wind and continued dryness, it was 30% more difficult than the conditions that prevailed during the Carmel fire. Along with all the government ministers here, I salute all those who took part in dealing with this crisis, in extinguishing the fires, and in guarding life and property. We have built an impressive ability to fight fires on the ground and from the air and it proved itself. I do not want to imagine what might have happened if we hadn’t built this ability.

“I would like to thank the many governments who sent assistance in the form of firefighting aircraft, pilots and firefighters and I would like to thank the personnel at the Foreign Ministry and the National Security Council and especially you, Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Zeev Tzuk-Tam who supervised very impressive international coordination. It is not simple to bring here so many elements, pilots, planes and materials from so many countries.

“Against the mighty forces of nature, countries worked together and the principle that has guided me and the government was – better over-ability than the risk of under-ability.

“During the events, I personally visited several centers of the fires and I already instructed that a team be established to learn lessons so that we will be even better prepared in the future. I am initiating the establishment of a multi-national force that will be coordinated not just for action in time of disaster, but also to acquire planes and allocate the acquisition of various types of planes so that we might thereby achieve multi-national effectiveness, and not just national effectiveness, in dealing with gigantic fires. I have spoken about this with several leaders from the region. I must say that they have shown great interest in the idea and we will advance it.”

Jewish Press Staff

Netanyahu Thanks Abbas for Fire Crew Assistance

Saturday, November 26th, 2016

PM Benjamin Netanyahu called PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday night and thanked him for sending fire fighting crews to help fight the fires.

The Palestinian Authority sent eight crews over to help fight the pyroterrorism fires. Four crews worked the Haifa area and four were in the Jerusalem area.

Jewish Press News Briefs

US SuperTanker Arrives as List of PyroTerror Arrests Grows

Friday, November 25th, 2016

The Boeing 747 SuperTanker from Colorado Springs arrived in Israel Friday evening, prior to the start of the Sabbath in New York, to help extinguish the flames raging across the Jewish State.

The SuperTanker in the largest firefighting aerial aircraft in the world and is capable of continuing to battle flames even after dark, while carrying up to 19,600 gallons of water or fire retardant. It also produces enough pressure to create eight rounds of a rain-like environment in fighting any blaze. Along with the SuperTanker, the United States has said it is sending 50 firefighters to Israel to help battle the flames.

Planes arrived and were on the way from numerous other nations as well, with Russian sending several, several times over.

The local municipality in Haifa has video evidence that the fire which ignited near the main fire depot in the port city was set deliberately, a spokesperson for the Haifa Fire Department announced Friday.

Spokesperson Uri Chibotaro told Israel’s Channel 2 television news the city has video evidence that proves the cause of the fire.

Chibotaro’s statement was backed up by Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon, who told Israel Radio in a separate interview that the blaze in Haifa — which sent some 75,000 residents of the city and its surrounds fleeing from their homes — there was proof indeed that the fire was an “intentional act of arson.”

At least 15 people are being held and are under investigation so far for allegations of arson and incitement to pyroterrorism, including six held in connection with the Haifa fire.

But at least two fire trucks were sent by the Palestinian Authority to help fight fires in Haifa, including those that reignited Friday due to the continued high winds. Palestinian Authority firefighting crews also worked together Friday morning with their Israeli counterparts to put out a fire in Sha’ar Haggai in the Jerusalem Hills.

In addition, Egypt has said it is sending two firefighting helicopters and Jordan has pledged several fire trucks to help its neighbor in the battle against the flames. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accepted all offers.

At least 700 homes were damaged and around 37 were totally destroyed in Haifa. By early Friday afternoon all Haifa residents were allowed to return home, with the exception of those living in 13 buildings too dangerous to enter.

Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan had told reporters earlier in the day the findings of an investigation into the conflagration in the northern town of Zichron Ya’akov indicated that blaze, too, was caused by pyroterrorists.

Eyewitnesses also spotted Arab suspects igniting a fire in the forest near Beit Meir as firefighters were battling the towering blaze that had already started on the outskirts of the community. At least 10 homes in the moshav were later destroyed overnight by that fire and more were damaged, but police managed to catch the suspect who was seen nearby in the Jerusalem hills.

High levels of air pollution and asbestos particles were found in at least six locations Friday morning in Beit Meir in testing by the Environmental Protection Ministry, following the fire. Sha’ar Haggai is not far.

Friday afternoon a fire also broke out in the small northern moshav of Ya’ad, located about 300 meters north of the Jewish community of Yitzhar. In Ya’ad, residents were evacuated as a precaution.

Firefighters battled a blaze near Yitzhar with two aerial firefighter aircraft as three fire trucks created a safety perimeter around the community, since access to Yitzhar is difficult at best. It was not yet clear how that fire got started.

Residents in the Galilee town of Harashim were also evacuated Friday morning due to an outbreak of fire, which was fought from the sky by aerial firefighting aircraft, and by 15 firefighting teams on the ground.

Hana Levi Julian

#Pyroterorism on Israelis’ Minds as Fires Continue to Rage, Thousands Evacuated

Friday, November 25th, 2016

On the fourth day of blazing fires throughout Israel, new eruptions are being reported in the north and in the Jerusalem area. Overnight between Thursday and Friday, Beit Meir, a religious moshav in the Jerusalem hills, some nine miles from Jerusalem, just off the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway 1, was evacuated due to a forest fire nearby. 25 firefighting crews with 60 firemen are in the area, struggling to prevent the fire from reaching local homes. Some of the homes have caught fire, though, and sustained damage.

When the Beit Meir locals initially reported the fire, they also reported seeing several suspicious looking people running away and police launched a manhunt. Shortly thereafter one man suspected of involvement with setting the fire was arrested.

Fire investigators are already working in various scenes even as the fires continue to rage, seeking clues to help figure out if a particular fire was started due to negligence or arson. According to Fire Commander Ran Shelef, Head of the Investigations Department in the National Fire and Rescue Authority, the difficulty in establishing whether a fire was set deliberately has to do with the fact that in arson cases the fire destroys most of the evidence. In Haifa, on Thursday, for instance, investigators were certain that at least some of the fires were the result of arson, but they failed to come up with conclusive evidence.

The primary goal in an arson investigation is to locate the origin of the fire, Shelef told Ha’aretz. “In a four to five room apartment you need to reach the one room where the fire started and examine the evidence regarding the cause of the fire.” In an open field this task is much harder, Shelef explained. “The topography is of no help to us, and some of the vegetation is gone. What’s even more difficult to establish are the circumstances – one little match and you got yourself a blaze. You don’t need accelerators, an ignition device or any other special apparatus.”

One of the key clues in such cases, according to Shelef, would be discovering more than one starting point for the fire. “Two starting points that cannot be explained,” he said, would be a dead giveaway for arson.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who visited Haifa to support and thank the hundreds of firefighters who are still fighting the blazes in city neighborhoods that had seen some 65 thousand residents evacuated, also discussed pyroterorism. “Any fire that’s caused by arson, and by incitement to arson – is terrorism for all intent and purposes, and we will deal with it accordingly,” Netanyahu said. “This is my directive to the security forces, police, the GSS, and the IDF: we will repay every act of lawlessness. Anyone who will try or has tried to burn down parts of the State of Israel will be punished to the fullest extent of the law.”

In Beit Meir, Jerusalem District Police Commander, Major General Yoram Halevy, told reporters that “evaluations, the quick arrival of rescue and police forces and an effective deployment of the forces prevented an incident where many could have been hurt. The fire spread at a very fast pace and reached some homes. In a very short time, all the residents were evacuated and we scanned for some who may have been left behind. At this point we have control over the fire and the efforts to put out the fire will continue. Our mission is to allow residents to return to their homes as soon as possible.”

“At this point a suspect has been arrested and taken for an interrogation,” Halevy reported.

David Israel

Friendly Nations Send Firefighter Aircraft to Help Israel Battle the Flames

Thursday, November 24th, 2016

As an estimated 220 fires raged across central and northern Israel, foreign nations sent firefighting aircraft flying to the aid of the Jewish State.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pointed out at a briefing Wednesday that some countries were sending aerial firefighters, but said it was clear that more were going to be needed.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan, Israel Police Commissioner Roni Alsheikh, Minister of Construction Yoav Galant and Minister of Interior Affairs Aryeh Deri brief media in the port city of Haifa, where flames forced 80,000 to evacuate from the city and surrounds.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan, Israel Police Commissioner Roni Alsheikh, Minister of Construction Yoav Galant and Minister of Interior Affairs Aryeh Deri brief media in the port city of Haifa. Flames forced 80,000 to evacuate from the city and surrounds.

“Firefighting planes from Israel and around the world are the critical component… That’s why we built the fire air squadron and it’s doing an excellent job. Countries are joining hands… Russia, Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Croatia and Turkey have already answered the call.”

By Thursday morning, Israel’s Foreign Ministry had announced via Twitter and other social media venues: “The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations has sent two Beriev Be-200 amphibious aircraft to fight the fires in Israel.”

The ministry didn’t forget to offer the nation’s thanks to everyone who sent help in Israel’s hour of need. “Thank you #Cyprus, #Croatia, #Greece, #Italy, #Russia, #Turkey, #Romania & Bulgaria for sending help to fight the fires in Israel. True friends!” tweeted the ministry on the Twitter social networking site.

Smoke billows over the Northern Israeli city of Haifa, where a major fire raged across the city on November 24, 2016.

Smoke billows over an apartment house in Haifa.

Four firefighting aircraft arrived from Cyprus and Greece alone. Included were 49 crew members, one Air Tractor from Cyprus and two Bombardiers and one Hercules from Greece, all ready for immediate battle and highly valued for their carrying capacity. Additional aircraft arrived from Russia, Turkey, the United Kingdom, Italy and Croatia.

The entire State of Israel had only 2,500 fire personnel at last count in 2013, including 1,800 firefighters. According to Israel Fire and Rescue Authority, only some seven percent of Israel’s total area is comprised of forest land, about 400,560 acres (1,621,000 dunams.) Each year, an average of 1,000 fires blaze in Jewish National Fund (JNF) forests in the country, affecting some 37,000 dunams (about 9,000 acres) of land.

Fire and Rescue Commissioner Shahar Ayalon, appointed under the Ministry of Public Security, is working together with Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, Police Commissioner Roni Alsheikh and other top security officials to bring the current crisis to an end.

“Every fire caused by arson, or incitement to commit arson, is terrorism for all intents and purposes,” Netanyahu underlined at the briefing, “and we will bring them to justice.”

Update for our readers in Azerbaijan, on Friday (Nov. 25) Azerbaijan sent a fire-fighting plane.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/friendly-nations-send-firefighter-aircraft-to-help-israel-battle-the-flames/2016/11/24/

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