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February 7, 2016 / 28 Shevat, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Northern Israel’

1,700-Year-Old Gravestones of Unknown Rabbis Uncovered in Northern Israel

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016

Three 1,700-year-old burial inscriptions in Aramaic and Greek have been uncovered in the northern Israeli community of Tzipori.

The discovery came after residents of the moshav found pieces of the stone and called the Kinneret Institute for Galilean Archaeology at Kinneret Academic College.

Researchers from the college excavated the site together with archaeologists from the Israel Antiquities Authority.

The two Aramaic inscriptions mention individuals referred to as “rabbis” who were buried in the western cemetery of Tzipori; their names have not yet been deciphered.

According to Dr. Motti Aviam of the Kinneret Institute for Galilean Archaeology, “The importance of the epitaphs lies in the fact that these reflect the everyday life of the Jews of Tzipori and their cultural world.

“Researchers are uncertain as to the meaning of the term ‘rabbi’ at the time when Rabbi Yehuda Ha-Nasi resided in Tzipori together with the Tannaim and after him by the Amoraim – the large groups of sages that studied in the city’s houses of learning.

“One of the surprises in the newly discovered inscriptions is that one of the deceased was called ‘the Tiberian’. This is already the second instance of someone from Tiberias being buried in the cemetery at Tzipori.

“It is quite possible that Jews from various parts of Galilee were brought to Tzipori to be buried in the wake of the important activity carried out there by Rabbi Yehuda Ha-Nasi.

“Another possibility is that the man moved to Tzipori and died there, but wanted to be remembered as someone who originally came from Tiberias,” he explained.

In the second Aramaic epitaph the word ‘le-olam’ (forever) appears for the first time in inscriptions found at Tzipori. The term le-olam is known from burial inscriptions in Beit She‘arim and elsewhere. “It means that the deceased’s burial place will remain his forever and that no one will take it from him. Both inscriptions end with the Hebrew blessing ‘shalom,’” Aviam explained.

Greek inscription on ancient gravestone found in Moshav Tzipori in northern Israel.

Greek inscription on ancient gravestone found in Moshav Tzipori.

“The Greek inscription mentions the name Jose, which was very common amongst Jews living in Israel and abroad.”

So far, 17 epitaphs were documented in the Tzipori study, most of them written in Aramaic, which was the everyday language of Jews in Israel at that time.

Contrasting this are the funerary inscriptions found in Tiberias – the second capital of the Galilee – which were mainly written in Greek.

Several of the ancient inhabitants from Tzipori are mentioned in these inscriptions, which include the names of rabbis and often have the names of the professions they were engaged in. Aramaic was the everyday language used by the Jews in the period of the Mishnah and Talmud, but some of them also spoke and read Greek, and thus there are also burial inscriptions in that language.

Tzipori was the first capital of the Galilee from the time of the Hasmonean dynasty until the establishment of Tiberias in the first century CE. The city continued to be central and important later on and was where Rabbi Yehuda Ha-Nasi resided and compiled the Mishnah.

Jewish life in the city was rich and diverse, as indicated by the numerous ritual pools (mikvahs) discovered in the excavation.

At the same time the influence of Roman culture was also quite evident as reflected in the design of the town with its paved streets, colonnaded main roads, theater and bathhouses.

The wealth of inscriptions from the cemeteries attests to the strong Jewish presence and the city’s social elite in the Late Roman period.

Lapid: Iran Deal Now Funding Terror at Israel’s Expense

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016

Israel is now reaping the fruits of the IranDeal signed with Tehran by the United States and five other world powers, Yesh Atid party chairman Yair Lapid told a gathering of foreign journalists Monday at the Jerusalem Press Club.

Lapid clearly backed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his stance on the Iranian threat to Israel – and U.S. culpability in strengthening that threat.

The former finance minister told reporters that the new flow of funds released in the relief of sanctions against Iran is already threatening Israel. “Secretary of State [John] Kerry said himself last week that some of the sanctions relief will go to funding terrorism. For us this is not theoretical. This money translates itself into rockets aimed at our children,” Lapid said.

“The next conflict in the north or south of Israel is just a matter of time,” he warned. “The provocations, the breaches of international law, the preparations… are already happening every day by Hamas in the south and Hezbollah in the north. Both with [and result from] Iranian backing.

“When the fighting breaks out, the analysis and reporting shouldn’t start with the first Israeli strike, but with what’s happening on the ground right now,” he told reporters.

He added that although he agrees with his former coalition partner on these points, Lapid said he still intends to run against Netanyahu in the next election – as the alternative candidate for prime minister.

Arab Terrorists Attack Israeli Motorists

Monday, January 18th, 2016

A female Israeli motorist was attacked by Arab terrorists Monday night while driving on the road in northern Israel near Gan Ner.

The driver was lightly wounded as her car came under a hail of rocks, hurled by the Arab attackers. The vehicle was damaged as well.

The victim was taken to receive treatment to the Emek Afula Medical Center.

Police launched a search for the suspects.

Israeli Arab Woman Was Not a Terrorist, Is Released by Police

Tuesday, January 12th, 2016

An Israeli Arab woman detained on suspicion of being a terrorist was found not to be a terrorist, and was released by Israel Police Tuesday morning.

Police said in a statement, “Security officials have determined that the suspect did not in fact intend to carry out a terrorist or criminal attack. The woman was released after interrogation,” the statement added.

The 28-year-old Tayibe resident was suspected of planning an attack in the northern town of Nahariya. A terror alert was issued in the city Monday evening, similar to one issued in Israel’s southern Lachish region about an hour earlier.

The woman was detained late Monday by security forces while riding in a taxi in Nahariya. She was searched by sappers to make sure she was not wearing explosives or carrying them anywhere on her person or among her belongings.

Security personnel had received a tip Monday morning that an Arab woman from Gaza was about to carry out an “imminent” cross-border attack. Because she had not yet been tracked down, police in southern Israel had set up roadblocks and carried out searches, eventually tracking down a different suspect altogether.

The alert in Nahariya was later removed.

Air Quality Improves With New Haifa Bay Environmental Project

Wednesday, January 6th, 2016

The air quality in the area around the Haifa Bay has improved over the past year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The region saw an 11 percent drop in air pollution levels coming from the industrial sector, the agency announced Tuesday, reaching a 65 percent drop since 2009. The first quarter report of a new action plan for the region said 77 percent of the biggest Haifa Bay factories are also now mandated to comply with stricter emissions controls.

Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav called it an “historical day.” For the first time in the history of the state, said the mayor, “a government representative has assumed not only the authority but also the responsibility of the state to correct the distortions and even the crimes committed in the Haifa Bay.”

The figures were presented in the first quarterly report of the National Action Plan for the Haifa Bay Area, a five year plan budgeted at NIS 330 million.

The government approved the project in September, tasking the program to improve the air quality in the region while reducing environmental risks. In addition, the program is being used to promote research, increase accessibility to data and beef up supervision, enforcement and monitoring of environmental issues in the area.

IDF Heightens Alert, Installs Barriers at Northern Border

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015

The IDF has begun to install concrete barriers at strategic points along Route 889, the road the runs along Israel’s border with Lebanon, as an additional protection from cross-border terrorist activity for the area’s residents.

Over the past several months the military has also added a “smart” security fence and other measures. Israeli farmers around Metullah have been warned not to work their fields near the border.

The IDF has also beefed up forces in the area in response to a direct threat by Hezbollah terrorist chief Hassan Nasrallah, who threatened Israel in a speech this week.

The measures were part of a heightened alert following air strikes on Hezbollah positions and last week’s assassination of the terror group’s commander in the Syrian Golan Heights, Lebanese Druze child killer Samir Kuntar.

Although the Free Syrian Army opposition force claimed responsibility for the assassination it is still largely believed that Israeli fighter jets carried out the strike against Kuntar. Israel, however, has said nothing in response to the claims.

Nasrallah said in his speech during a ceremony marking a week after Kuntar’s death, “The response for the assassination of al-Kuntar is coming, there’s no doubt.

“The Israelis have a reason to be worried, in the border area and outside it (ed. – abroad). The scary statements we’ve heard (ed. – from Israel) in the past few days won’t help… Look at the border from Rosh HaNikra to the Israeli position in the occupied Golan. Where are the enemy soldiers? Are they not like rats, hiding in their lairs?”

The so-called “scary statements” referred to by Nasrallah were conveyed to the terrorist leader by a third party over the weekend, according to the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Qabas. “Israel will unleash a massive and merciless attack on Lebanon if Hezbollah retaliates for the assassination of Samir Kuntar,” European diplomats reportedly told Nasrallah. The warning followed a threat by the terrorist leader to avenge Kuntar’s death.

Those threats were again answered – this time directly – by IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Eizenkot during his own speech at a ceremony Tuesday establishing a new IDF Commando Brigade.

“You don’t need to have a wide understanding of intelligence or strategy to understand the sensitivity of this period,” Eizenkot said.

“You look to the north and see the boastful statements (of Nasrallah) and the wind blowing in from Lebanon.

“You see the threats last night by Da’esh (ISIS) and the wave of security escalations we’ve been contending with in the past few months in [Judea and Samaria] and the threats from the south.

“These make the capabilities we see here more necessary than ever. The IDF Commando Brigade will be a front line protector and a marker of the IDF’s abilities and spirit,” he said.

Rocketfire Sends Northern Israelis Racing for Bomb Shelters

Sunday, December 20th, 2015

Rocketfire from across the northern Israeli border sent residents in Nahariya
racing for bomb shelters early Sunday evening as the Red Alert (Tzeva Adom) incoming rocket alert siren blared across the northern coastal city.

Israelis in other northern communities were alerted to the threat and made their way to safe rooms as well.

The blasts from three rockets were heard to explode in open areas, according to local sources. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage to property.

Security forces are searching for the specific impact sites, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said.

Residents in the northern Jewish community of Shlomi have been told to remain near their bomb shelters this evening.

The attack followed the death on Saturday of Lebanese terrorist Samir Kuntar, who was killed in an alleged Israeli air strike. Although Jerusalem welcomed the news of the Hezbollah terrorist’s death, the Israeli government did not formally take responsibility for the attack.

Kuntar was responsible for the brutal 1979 murder of the Haran family on behalf of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), including his own personal beating death of the family’s four-year-old child with the butt of his rifle.

The Lebanese terrorist was freed from an Israeli prison as part of an exchange deal to bring back the bodies of two IDF reservists, Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser. The two were kidnapped and murdered by Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorists as part of an operation that launched the 2006 Second Lebanon War. Upon his return to Lebanon, Kuntar joined Hezbollah.

On Saturday, he died in a house at a meeting on the outskirts of Damascus, as the commander of Hezbollah terrorist operations in the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/northern-israel-racing-for-bomb-shelters/2015/12/20/

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