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August 3, 2015 / 18 Av, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Northern Israel’

Rivlin Tells Bnei Akiva, ‘We Must Not Let This Happen Again’

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

President Reuven Rivlin expressed deep concern Thursday over an attack on a Bnei Akiva building containing a synagogue in northern Israel after learning about the desecration from an Arutz 7 reporter who called asking for a comment.

Vandals torched a Bnei Akiva synagogue in the northern Israeli city of Nazereth Illit this week, just before the start of the Shavuot holiday that marks the giving of the Ten Commandments on Mt. Sinai.

Siddurim and other holy books were torn apart, burned and desecrated in other ways. Elsewhere in the Bnei Akiva building, Israeli flags were defiled, cabinets were upended, paint was splattered all over the place and flourescent lights were smashed.

Bnei Akiva has long been a source of pride in the community; the religious Zionist movement has maintained a branch in Nazareth Illit for 40 years. Five years ago, a hesder yeshiva for Torah scholars entering army service was added to the program there as well.

According to spokesperson Naomi Toledano, President Reuven Rivlin has expressed his shock over the attack to Bnei Akiva Secretary-General Danny Hirshberg.

Rivlin expressed support for a plan by Bnei Akiva to hold a meeting between the young members of the branch and neighborhood Arabs immediately following the upcoming Jewish holiday of Shavuot, which begins at the close of the Sabbath, on Saturday night.

“Only dialogue will lead to closeness and understanding,” Rivlin said. “We must not let harsh and shocking incidents like this one happen again.”

He praised plans by the branch to hold its traditional all-night Torah study session for the Shavuot holiday despite the attack.

Although it is not yet clear who perpetrated the damage and desecration, there have been numerous incidents of harassment of the Bnei Akiva youths by local Arabs in the past.

ISIS Fighters in Syria May Be Felled By Lesions (Not Legions)

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

To everything in its season, and so the tide has turned once more in the Middle East. What bombing could not end, God’s Mighty Hand may accomplish with a tiny fly.

Fighters for Daesh, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist organization, are now being attacked by a terrible skin disease called Leishmaniasis.

Two types of the disease have been identified in the region: Leishmaniasis major, and Leishmaniasis tropica. Both are carried and transmitted by parasites hosted on sand flies in the environment.

Although an article by Hadassah Medical Center says the disease cannot be transferred from person to person, researchers found in a study published in The Journal of Infectious Diseases in 2003 that such transmission may indeed be possible, since parasites can jump.

An outbreak of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis (CL) in the Galilee region of northern Israel in 2003 was discussed in the article which noted 33 cases in four villages and in the city of Tiberias were diagnosed between 1996 and 2003. The disease, which spread through parasites and sand flies, had mutated from its predecessor, Leishmania major and other tropical diseases.

CL due to Leishmania major as opposed to MCL and VL (two other forms) was defined as being zoonotic and much more difficult to treat. The cutaneous lesions were said to last much longer and the disease was described as life-threatening if it progressed to visceral leishmaniasis (VL). The study found that rock hyraxes found in northern Israel around Lake Kinneret were the most probable reservoir hosts for the parasites that carry the disease.

If that is true, then so too is it likely that ISIS fighters are facing a difficult time because it was mentioned that the parasites also jump from person to person, as well from the living animals around them.

More to the point, the disease is caused by poor hygiene and bad living conditions; it has affected at least 100,000 people in Syria, according to the latest reports. It can result in open flesh wounds, ulcers, an enlarged spleen and liver, anemia and ultimately lead to death.

Although it’s pretty easy to treat, there are very few medics and trained medical professionals left in Syria and ISIS-controlled Iraq who know how to manage it.

Volunteers with the Doctors Without Borders organization of course know how to handle it – but since ISIS is deeply dedicated to kidnapping, torturing and murdering those helping hands, it’s not likely they are going to see any help from them. Ditto for Syrian government troops for the same reason.

Ironically, a new project was launched last year by the Israeli Pharmaseed research company to track down a treatment for this disease.

Four partners were recruited for the project. Two of the four — the Dead Sea and Arava Science Centers – identified 70 plant extracts that may be relevant for fighting the parasite.

The Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, meanwhile, will test the efficacy of the extracts on leishmaniasis samples.

Pharmaseed is coordinating the project and is responsible for safety tests, and for assessing the potential efficacy of the extracts being tested.

Jordan University of Science and Technology Prof. Nabil Hailat will carry out advanced live and clinical trials (on humans) in Jordan, which should yield the test results.

Border Patrol Chief Inspector Jadan Assad Laid to Rest

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Thousands came to the northern Israeli Druze town of Beit J’an today to pay their final respects to Border Patrol Chief Inspector Jadan Assad as he was laid to rest.

The 38-year-old police captain was murdered in a Hamas vehicular terror attack yesterday (Wednesday, Nov. 5) along the tracks of the Jerusalem Light Rail. He is survived by his pregnant wife and young, three-year-old son, four siblings and both parents.

Among the sea of mourners was Public Security Minister Yitzchak Aharonovitch, whose voice rang out as he blamed Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas for Assad’s death.

The Druze police captain, he said, “was murdered yesterday with heartless cruelty and taken evilly from his wife, his son and his parents.”

Israeli leaders have united in condemning the Palestinian Authority leader, citing repeated instances of his incitement to terror.

Three other Border Patrol police officers suffered serious wounds in the attack in addition to ten others who were wounded as well.

They’re Ba-a-a-a-ck… Hezbollah Guerrillas Redeploy on Israel’s Northern Border

Monday, October 20th, 2014

Hezbollah guerrillas are back on Israel’s northern border, even though they’re busy in Syria. The only question now is what they are planning to do, and when.

IDF soldiers on Mount Dov fired warning shots today (Monday) at a shepherd approaching the border fence from Lebanon. At least, it appeared to be a shepherd. Along the northern border, you really never know. Regardless, the “shepherd” retraced his steps.

There have been a rash of “shepherd” incidents in that area of late. Earlier this month, two unidentified people also approached the border fence, but they ignored warnings by the IDF to turn back.

That incident and several others constitute a sea change in what has, until now, been a relatively calm period on the border between Lebanon and Israel. The exceptions might be the token Katyusha attacks launched here and there during Operation Protective Edge this past summer. But since the end of the 2006 Second Lebanon War, it has been pretty quiet.

It’s not clear how much longer that calm will hold, according to reports from Lebanon.

The Shehab news agency reports the Hezbollah terror organization has “changed its policy” and is moving forces from Syria to deploy along the border with Israel.

The report, published in Arabic today on the news agency’s Facebook page, quotes one written in the leftist Israeli daily Ha’aretz that referenced an article published in the Lebanon-based Al-Akhbar newspaper. Al-Akhbar, which is believed to be linked with Hezbollah, reported that the terror group is again expanding its operations in southern Lebanon, south of the Litani River.

The same move was seen prior to the Second Lebanon War. And this is now taking place despite the drain on the group’s resources due to its 3-year fight against Syrian rebels on alongside government forces for the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

Both Hezbollah and Assad are generously patronized by the Iranian government, which has also sent its elite Revolutionary Guards to help in the war effort.

The October 8 article in Al-Akhbar referred to the October 7 attack on an Israeli army patrol that left two IDF soldiers injured on Mount Dov, also known as the Sheba’a Farms.

Israeli media also reported on the attack, including JewishPress.com. “Initial reports indicate the explosive device was planted with the intent to attack soldiers,” read a statement from the IDF describing the attack.

Israel returned fire with mortar shells towards Sheba’a Farms and Kfar Shuba, the Hezbollah-linked Al Manar TV station reported. A second bomb was detonated along the same border area a couple of hours later, but no injuries were reported in the new attack.

A day earlier, IDF soldiers spotted a terror cell attempting to infiltrate into northern Israel. The soldiers fired at the infiltrators, and hit at least one, according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit, who said the cell raced back across the border into Lebanon.

“The incident has not ended,” a senior IDF source said.

A subsequent statement released by IDF Spokesperson Peter Lerner acknowledged the army had “responded to the unprovoked aggression against its forces and will continue to operate to maintain the safety of northern Israel.”

Just over eight years ago, United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701 ended the Second Lebanon War. The agreement has been violated by Hezbollah from the day the document was signed. The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) charged with enforcing it has never actually done so — primarily because it can’t.

The document calls for the disarmament of all groups and entities in Lebanon other than the “legitimate” Lebanese Army. This was to include Hezbollah and any other terrorist organization.

IDF Sends Infiltrators Racing Back Across Israel’s Northern Border into Lebanon

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

Unidentified infiltrators crossed into northern Israel from Lebanon early Sunday, according to a report from the IDF.

Soldiers spotted the suspects and sent them racing back across the border, an IDF spokesperson said.

The incident occurred Sunday morning “during a routine activity along the Israel-Lebanon border,” the IDF spokesperson said.

“The force responded by opening fire towards the suspects, who escaped north, returning to Lebanon. The incident is currently being reviewed,” the IDF spokesperson added.

Meanwhile two Turkish residents were wounded today (Sunday, Oct. 5) when a Syrian mortar shell scored a direct hit on a home in the Turkish border town of Suruc, the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) reported.

A second Syrian shell struck a house in the nearby town of Buyukkendirli. No one was wounded in that attack.

3 Wounded Syrians Treated in Nahariya

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

More wounded Syrians were brought Tuesday morning to be treated at Nahariya’s Western Galilee Medical Center.

Three victims of the Syrian civil war were added to the ranks of the hundreds who have received medical care in Israel in more than three years.

The patients were brought to the center in fair condition, suffering in varying degrees from injuries to the chest and limbs.

Western Galilee Medical Center has treated – and admitted – hundreds of patients injured as a result of the Syrian conflict.

So far at least 363 Syrians have been treated in Nahariya alone. More have been admitted at Ziv Medical Center in Tzfat.

False Alarm in Southern Israel, Real Rocket Fire in North

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Residents of Gaza Belt communities in southern Israel once again raced in a mad dash for their bomb shelters when a Code Red rocket alert siren activated Monday at midday.

The siren sounded in Netiv Ha’Asara, Yad Mordechai and along the Mediterranean coast in the city of Ashkelon.

It was initially believed to be a false alarm, then later reported as a rocket fired at Israel that had fallen short, landing within Gaza territory.

Ultimately, it now appears that it really was a false alarm — but at the end of the day, it’s not clear because numerous jets were heard to scramble overhead, flying south.

Also in Karnei Shomron, Home Front Command apparently scheduled a test Monday morning for the Code Red incoming rocket alert system, but didn’t bother to inform residents about the drill. Talk about really bad timing.

In the north, the IDF has cleared for publication that early Monday morning a “stray rocket” landed in Israeli territory after being fired from the Quneitra border crossing in Syria.

The rocket exploded in an open area. No one was physically injured in the incident. According to the report, fighting on the Syrian side of the border has been “particularly intense” throughout the day.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/false-alarm-in-southern-israel-real-rocket-fire-in-north/2014/09/15/

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