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April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Galilee’

Hezbollah’s Nasrallah Claims Galilee Threat from Syria

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Hezbollah terrorist chief Hassan Nasrallah claimed this week that Israel’s Galilee region is being threatened by events in Syria.

He noted that Israel was growing more worried about Iran as the days pass, and that the Jewish State is now closely guarding the Galilee region areas near the Golan Heights due to fear of cross-border attacks.

Nearly a month after an IDF jeep was blown up as soldiers patrolled along the northern border, Nasrallah also claimed responsibility for that attack, saying it came in response to one he blamed on Israel that prevented his group from receiving sophisticated arms from Iran.

But Israel has yet to acknowledge its part in the air strike, which left four Hezbollah terrorists dead. A missile launcher and two trucks that set out from Syria bearing supplies of missiles allegedly able to carry newer, heavier warheads never reached the Hezbollah warehouses.

According to a report in the Lebanese Daily Star newspaper quoting an interview published Monday in the As-Safir newspaper, Syrian government forces have begun to re-establish their control over Damascus and surrounds. Not good news for the State of Israel, said Nasrallah, who told the newspaper the regime of President Bashar al-Assad is no longer in jeopardy.

Nasrallah claimed that although opposition forces in Syria appeared to have the upper hand last year, the fact that Assad remained in office was proof “the danger of the Syrian regime falling has ended and we have exceeded the risk of partition.”

The Shi’ite terror chief added that although there had been one group in Syria that had opposed Hezbollah’s presence, but that the issue had been settled. Nasrallah said that the presence of “radical groups” in Syria are an existential threat to Lebanon and the region.

The Al Qaeda terrorist organization – a radical Islamist Sunni group – has been referred to by rival terrorists  as a “radical” organization. While the conflict in Syria often appears to Western eyes as a basic civil war, that is not what this is really about.

In the absence of an orderly transfer of power from Assad to another strong administrative hand at the helm, Syria is now in the process of being systematically hacked apart by rival groups backed by various Arab countries, each vying for a piece of the land in which to set up independent emirates.

Many are radical Islamists linked to groups like Al Qaeda or Hezbollah, although some are independent. A separate sector of groups is loosely tied together in the moderate secular council of opposition forces known as the Syrian National Council.

It is this group with which the West tried to form a relationship – only to discover that any military support it provided was handed over to radical Islamic terrorists whenever the groups united together to fight Syria’s government army.

Israel has been providing medical support to the opposition forces – and possibly to Assad’s forces as well, it is not really clear – in a field hospital set up in the ‘no man’s land’ buffer zone in the Golan Heights. Critically wounded Syrians are somehow spirited over the border and brought to Israeli hospitals in Tzfat and sometimes elsewhere in Israel for special care.

Home Front Command Drill Simulating Rocket Attack in the North

Monday, November 25th, 2013

The Home Front Command will carry out what it called a routine drill Tuesday through Thursday in the Western Galilee to maintain preparedness for rocket attacks from Hezbollah or Syria. The exercise will include the distribution of gas masks.

A siren will be activated in all parts of the Western Galilee at 10:15 a.m. Israeli time for  90 seconds. Internet and radio alerts will be issued, and personal alerts will be sent to civilians via text messages.

Police, fire departments and Magen David Adom will participate in the drill, and soldiers in full uniform will travel through the cities of Acre (Akko) and Karmiel and practice rescuing civilians.

Remains of Independence War Soldier May Have Been Found

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

Israeli military spokesmen revealed Sunday that human bones were found in northern Israel two weeks ago and be those of a soldier who has been listed as “missing” since the war for Independence in 1948.

“The bones were transferred to investigators with the IDF’s missing persons branch. The identity of the bones is under investigation,” the IDF said in a statement to the Hebrew language Yediot Acharonot newspaper.

Six soldiers have been declared missing since 1948.

Israelis to Munch 15,000 Tons of Apples this Rosh Hashanah Season

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

The apple and honey tradition on Rosh Hashanah has Israelis consuming 15,000 tons of apples during the month of September, an increase of almost 50 percent  from average consumption during the rest of the year.

Israel’s crop of apples is of a particularly high quality this year, according to Amos Levin, general manager of the Galilee Development Corporation and chairman of the apple division of Israel’s Plants Production and Marketing Board.

“This summer’s relative cooler temperatures, especially at night, helped produce a higher quality of crop,” he said. Levin noted that this year’s crop, harvested from August through November, is excellent for size, color and taste.

Nearly all of Israel’s apples are grown in the hills of the Galilee and the Golan Heights because apples require cold winters and cooler summer nights to grow best.

The northern apple orchards are located on hills that are more than 2,000 feet higher and cover approximately 10,500 acres.

More than 100,000 tons of apples are sold in Israel each year, with the apple market valued at more than $200 million, serving as the core for the local economy in the Golan Heights. Another 7,000 tons of apples are imported into Israel from the United States and Europe.

While Israel exports little of its apples abroad, this year, the country exported 18,000 tons of apples grown by Druze farmers living in the Golan to Syria, in coordination with the Plants Production and Marketing Board, the IDF and the Red Cross. The Druze apple growers of the Golan have been selling to Syria has for the past eight year, but the apple exports were stopped in 2012 when the war situation became too volatile.

This year the apple industry also drew a number of university students from across Israel interested in learning more about agriculture and helping out Golan apple growers.

Sapir college student, Yotam Eyal told Tazpit News Agency that he and his friends have been picking apples for the past month.

“We are college students from all over Israel – from the Negev, Jerusalem, and the north, who are interested in learning more about agriculture and connecting to the land,” Eyal explained. “There are projects that have been initiated in the past year which get students involved in these areas.”

“It’s good to see where a fruit like an apple that you buy in the supermarket comes from,” commented Eyal. “Picking apples all day in the orchard is hard work. But it has made us appreciate dipping the apple in honey that much more this Rosh HaShanah.”

Northern Israel Arab Kills Wife, Daughters and Himself

Sunday, September 1st, 2013

An Israeli Arab from the Galilee, in northern Israel, shot and killed his divorced wife, two daughters, another man and himself early Sunday. A third daughter is in critical condition.

The murderer shot his wife and another identified person at a nursing home where she worked. Their eight-year-old daughter was shot but survived, while two teenage girls and another unidentified person were murdered as the children waited at a municipal building for a bus to school.

Alabama Prof. Uncovers 2,000-Year-Old Village in Northern Israel

Sunday, August 4th, 2013

A U.S.-led team of archaeologists has announced it has discovered the site of Shikhin in the Lower Galilee, which is mentioned even before the Second Temple by the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus and which existed after the destruction of the Temple.

The Talmud mentions Shikhin as a village of potters near Tzippori, which was a Talmudic center after the destruction of the Second Temple.

Josephus wrote that Shikhin as one of the earliest Jewish settlements in the Galilee at the time of the Hasmonaean rule about 140-63 B.C..

Religion Prof. Riley Strange, of Alabama’s Samford University, led a team of David Fiensy of Kentucky Christian University and Mordechai Aviam, of the Kinneret Academic College, and students and researchers, many of whom worked for nearly two years at the site approximately five miles northwest of Nazareth.

They found an ancient synagogue, houses and massive evidence of pottery production in the ancient village of Shikhin, near the ancient Talmudic center of Tzippori.

“The site of the discovery has been abandoned, except for agriculture, ever since the mid-fourth century A.D.,” said Prof. Strange. “The buildings came down and people used its stones in other nearby buildings, then those buildings were destroyed and the stones were re-used again.”

Like Tziporri, where ongoing archaeological digs have come up with numerous discoveries, Shikhin flourished as a Jewish village while co-existing with Christian neighbors.

The archaeologists uncovered a large number of molds that are proof that the village potters produced various types of seven-branched oil lamps in addition to common pottery forms. One small fragment of an oil lamp is decorated with a Menorah and Lulav, the palm branch used on the holiday of Sukkot.

The discovery is considered highly significant and opens up a treasure chest that sheds more light on the rich culture of the period and of the economic and religious lives of Jews in an era when Christians began to be influential.

Power for Israel’s Message of Responsibility in Arab Village

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

In the spirit of their party slogan, “No privileges without duties,” on Tuesday morning the party Otzma L’Israel – Power for Israel – began their tour aka march of the village of Musmus, in the largely Arab Wadi Ara section of “green line” Israel. The marchers are demanding the enforcement of the law in all villages of Galilee and the Arab Triangle, Srugim reports.

The tour was accompanied by a heavy police entourage, which permitted only one bus full of activists to enter the village. The remaining activists have camped at the Megiddo junction and are being transported by police minibuses to the village.

Both party leaders, MKs Mordechai Ben Ari and Aryeh Eldad are leading the tour, walking the village streets with maps and the “No privileges without duties” banners.

MK Ben Ari told the accompanying press: “This has been our message throughout the campaign. It cannot be that entire cities and many villages, especially in the Negev and Galilee, life would go on as if they’re in a separate country. Anyone who wants privileges must pay municipal taxes, must obey the laws governing construction, and must be loyal to the State of Israel. Just as we have the Talya Sasson Outposts Law controlling settlements in Judea and Samaria, so we must have reporting of illegal construction in the Negev and Galilee.”

The Musmus village council announced that the police alone would bear responsibility for the consequences of the visit, no matter what those might be.

“Musmus will not behave in any lesser way than other Arab villages which kicked out the right-wing Zionist human garbage from their lands. There’s no Ahlan and no Sahlan (hello and welcome) for you, foreign, rootless orphans,” the announcement declared.

The Blessings of Rain

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

It starts to rain in Israel, if we are lucky, some time in late October or November. If we are less blessed, it will start in December. January sees rainfall, as does February. By March, we know we’re near the end and by April it’s over. May, June, July, August, September (and usually October) – no rain – often not a single time, once in a while there’ll be a short rain – sometimes not even that.

The winter in Israel is spent watching the level of the Sea of Galilee – as it rises, we know we’ll have water for the coming dry months. Early in the winter, meteorologists will predict a wet winter, a dry one, a warm one, a cold one. Sometimes, you don’t even hear their prediction. This has been a good year – so far…though  much is still needed to take us out of the perpetual drought we have been in for over a decade. In all of the years I have been in Israel, not once has the level of the Sea of Galilee reached over capacity. There are provisions for this happening – huge flood gates that can be opened, sending water down through the Jordan Valley and into the dying Dead Sea.

Last year was adequate – this year, we still wait to hear. The winter is probably about half-over but we think in terms of days. In the last few days, the Sea of Galilee has risen an amazing 22 centimeters – I don’t know if you can imagine what that means. Yesterday it rained; today it is raining. Tomorrow and the next day, they are predicting more rain and even snow in some areas.

People are complaining about floods and traffic and the cold and through it all, there is this amazing joy. People will say, “it’s miserable out there, thank God.” Each drop is a blessing, a gift. In Israel, from a young age, we teach our children two things about water – don’t waste it, and always carry it with you. My children go with bottles of water – the heat in the summer can be very dangerous and they need to carry water with them. They shut the water when they soap themselves up in the shower; they shut the water when they are brushing their teeth. You don’t waste water in Israel. If you peel potatoes into a pot of water so they don’t turn colors – you walk outside and pour the pot of water into the garden.

As we drove into Jerusalem today, the water was flowing over the hills, pouring down the rocks, forming a river on the side of the road. Lauren tried to get a picture but the camera focused on the drops on the window instead. “Open the window,” said Davidi.

Both my daughter-in-law Lauren and I thought that was a bad idea – she’d be soaked, as would the car! But a neighbor managed to capture the power of the water. This is today’s blessing from God to a land that He loves, and a land that loves Him.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/the-blessings-of-rain/2013/01/08/

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