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December 25, 2014 / 3 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘threat’

Netanyahu Warns of ‘Terrorist Assault on Jerusalem’

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned Israelis in a statement Tuesday of a Palestinian Authority Arab “terrorist assault focused on Jerusalem” and of “hatred and incitement” perpetrated by the PA leadership against Israel.

In an unusually long and particularly intense statement, the prime minister exhorted Israelis to put aside their differences and to unite around defending Israel’s capital, Jerusalem and to defend the security of Israel’s citizens.

Netanyahu also issued a clear warning to Israelis not to take the law into their own hands, and reaffirmed his commitment to keep Jerusalem united.

“Today, during morning prayers, as they were wrapped in prayer shawls and tefillin, four rabbis were slaughtered, four innocent and pure Jews – Rabbi Avraham Goldberg, Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky, Rabbi Kalman Ze’ev Levine and Rabbi Moshe Twersky. May their memories be blessed.

“We send our condolences to their families. We send our best wishes for a recovery to the wounded and to the heroic policemen whose action prevented a greater disaster. The human animals who perpetrated this slaughter were full of hatred and incitement, deep hatred and terrible incitement against the Jewish People and its state.

“Hamas, the Islamic Movement and the Palestinian Authority are disseminating countless lies and falsehoods against the State of Israel. They are saying that the Jews are contaminating the Temple Mount. They are saying that we are planning to destroy the Holy Places, that we intend to change the order of prayer there – this is all lies.

“These lies have already claimed a very heavy price. They took the life of a three-month-old baby, Chaya Zissel Braun, who had been taken for her first visit to the Western Wall, along with her parents, who wanted to thank G-d for giving them a baby. They also claimed the lives of Karen Jemima Mosquera, Jidan Assad, Aharon Badani, Sgt. Almog Shilony and Dalia Lemkus. All of them were pure souls. All of them were victims of this mendacious incitement. Today they are joined by additional victims of the same wild blood libel of the kind that is etched in the memory of our people.

“Yesterday a bus driver from eastern Jerusalem committed suicide. He committed suicide. The findings of the pathology report have been published and they prove this unequivocally. He committed suicide. But this has not prevented those same elements from inciting and disseminating the blood libel to the effect that he was murdered by Jews.

“This incitement contributed its part to the shocking slaughter that was perpetrated this morning in a holy place during prayers. But what is outrageous is not only the brutality of the murder but the shouts of joy in Gaza, in Bethlehem and in other places. They are giving out candies, waving axes in the air and praising the shahidim. (ed. – martrys)

“True, this time Abu Mazen (PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas) condemned the slaughter and it is good that he did. I remember that he also condemned the murder of the three youths but it is not enough because in the same sentence in which he condemned today’s slaughter, he linked it to imaginary actions – which have no basis in reality – that Israel is purportedly planning to carry out on the Temple Mount.

“There is daily, even hourly, incitement on the streets of the Palestinian Authority. There, not only do the most reprehensible murderers become the heroes of Palestinian culture, but there is unending, constant incitement against the very existence of the State of Israel, against the security of Israel’s citizens, in schools, the media, mosques, everywhere, and this is the root of the conflict: The refusal to recognize – and educate for – the existence of the state of the Jews.

Israel Gears Up for Deadly Ebola Virus as 2nd Case Confirmed in U.S.

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Israel is gearing up to deal with the threat of the deadly Ebola virus as a second case is confirmed in the United States just days after the first diagnosed patient died in Dallas, Texas.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu held a special meeting this morning (Sunday, Oct. 12) to discuss the spread of the lethal virus.

More than four thousand victims have succumbed worldwide to the disease thus far. In the United States the first victim of the virus, Liberian citizen Thomas Eric Duncan, died last Wednesday despite being treated with the experimental anti-viral medication brincidofovir.

This morning a second case of the disease was confirmed at the same medical center. A health care worker at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital who cared for Duncan until he died, has now also tested positive for the same virus, according to confirmation of tests by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia.

Duncan’s remains have been cremated, though it is not clear when, where or by whom. Potentially contaminated material has been removed from the apartment where he stayed prior to his admission to hospital, and incinerated at a hazardous material processing center.

Meanwhile, a nurse in Spain has also been diagnosed with the disease. Her pet dog was euthanized last week as a precaution, and her husband is being held in isolation at a hospital as well.

Last week Israeli ministry officials met in the prime minister’s office to discuss ways to deal with the possibility that Ebola might spread to the Jewish State. “It is a real possibility,” one doctor at an Israeli HMO told Jewish Press.com on Sunday, on condition of anonymity because she was not authorized to speak with media.

“Look at how the disease has traveled from Africa now to Europe. As diseases go, so too might this one,” she said. “It would not be unexpected for it to reach this region — and our country — as well. It’s just wiser to plan for it and always best when and if it never happens.”

The government decided to monitor travelers who arrive in Israel from the countries most heavily affected by the disease: Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. Israel’s health care system is also gearing up to provide services to anyone who may come down with the illness, or who may arrive here already infected or carrying the disease.

The prime minister summed up the meeting by saying, “The State of Israel is prepared in order to bar the possible entry of people with Ebola, as part of our effort to defend our borders against illegal migrants and terrorism. This is a global plague and we are cooperating with other countries in addition to guarding our borders; we are taking a series of steps to isolate those who are ill, if they arrive, and treat them, of course, in our healthcare system. We hope that this will not be necessary but we are prepared for any eventuality.”

Ben-Gurion International Airport Director Shmuel Zakai added, “We are beginning a very extensive deployment at all border crossings in order to locate and prevent the entry of travelers carrying the Ebola virus.”

Health Ministry Director General Prof. Arnon Afek also noted, “The healthcare system is monitoring the Ebola issue and is in contact with experts around the world. We are improving the preparedness of the healthcare system in order to be able to deal with any people stricken with Ebola should they arrive in Israel.”

In addition, three mobile clinics are being sent to hard-hit areas in response to a direct request by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the World Health Organization and a number of international aid organizations. Along with the three mobile clinics, Israel is sending a staff of medical experts who will train local medical personnel to use the equipment that is sent. They will also teach local staff to raise awareness in the local population and among others with a high potential for infection.

Woolworths Hits Back at BDS with Lawsuit Threat

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

The South Africa-based Woolworths retail chain is threatening to sue the Boycott, Divest and Sanction group over customer and staff safety.

“Our employees, of all faiths and cultures, are telling us that they are feeling increasingly threatened by the protests,” Woolworths spokesman Babs Diamini said this week, according to South Africa’s Times Live.

“What’s more, the families of our employees have reported being abused and sworn at by BDS. If this continues we will consider taking further precautions, including legal action against the individuals involved,” Diamini said.

Just as BDS has the right to protest, said Diamini, the chain’s employees have the right to work, and its customers have the right to shop without being intimidated.

She added that it is not clear why Woolworths is being targeted and other major corporations are not, because “more than 95 percent of our food is sourced locally [and] the government continues to authorize trade with Israel.”

Other companies with ties to Israel include Coca-Cola, McDonalds, Danone, Nestle and Motorola. But BDS activist Mohammed Desai made it clear the movement would stay focused on Woolworths, acknowledging the group could not tackle every target at once.

“For now, Woolworths is our target. They are making a grave mistake by ignoring us and if we go to all those retailers our campaign will be diluted.”

BDS activists have demonstrated at more than 40 protests targeting Woolworths around South Africa. The group says it plans to raise the pressure at the retail giant’s annual general meeting on November 26.

Woolworths Holdings Limited is a South African chain of retail stores and one of the largest in the country, modeled on Marks & Spencer of the United Kingdom. The Woolworths brand incorporates a series of food stores, some of which are attached to department stores, while others stand alone or are attached to Engen petrol stations in prosperous urban areas. Some branches include an in-store restaurant, branded as “Cafe W”. Woolworths goods are sold at 149 corporate stores, 51 international franchise stores throughout the rest of Africa and the Middle East and 69 South African franchise stores nationwide. The chain was named after the United States chain F. W. Woolworth Company but, because of the contemporary trademark laws, the name was legally used without permission. No financial connection ever existed between the companies.

Will Iraq Become the Next Syria?

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

Baghdad’s new leader faces a fight from his predecessor and a raging tornado from the tornado of ISIS raging across his land. Will Iraq be able to weather the storm or will it become the next Syria?

Two-term Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki lost his job yesterday (Monday) to Haider al-Abadi, but he has yet to concede defeat.

Al-Maliki had cherished hopes of serving a third term in office. But the consensus of world leaders was that Iraq was badly weakened by an existential threat from the Islamic State, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It was, however, equally weakened by its own folly, having thrown out American troops in 2011, thus assuring a lack of support from the United States, which pulled its forces from the region as demanded, leaving al-Maliki and the largely unprepared Iraqi army to wrestle with the terror threat alone.

Iraq’s new president, Fouad Massoum yesterday formally appointed al-Abadi, a former finance minister and moderate Shi’ite politician in a nationally televised address and gave him 30 days to form a new government.

The move was supported by US President Barack Obama, who congratulated al-Abadi in brief remarks delivered from his holiday retreat in Martha’s Vineyard. Obama said that both he and Vice President Joe Biden had already spoken with al-Abadi.

Al-Maliki could, however, make trouble for al-Abadi since he still controls a number of military units who are personally loyal to him. A political or even military civil war in Iraq a la Syria, given the current terrorist war already raging there, would ignite the tinderbox that would blow the country to Kingdom Come.

The Al Qaeda-linked ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) terror organization has swept through much of northern Iraq, conquering the region’s largest city, Mosul. In addition to trapping tens of Iraqis at the top of a mountain and threatening to exterminate them, ISIS is now threatening Baghdad itself.

The United States sent some 400 ‘military consultants’ to the country several weeks ago to help the overwhelmed Iraqi army reorganize its forces to meet the threat. Last week the US also air-dropped food, water and other essential humanitarian supplies to those trapped on the mountaintop.

But the Obama administration has been adamant about where the military line will be drawn: ‘No boots on the ground,” said White House spokesman John Earnest. Instead, the US began carrying out targeted air strikes against the terror group last week. Obama justified the move in a statement in which he said the American people could not stand by and watch a terror group attempt “genocide.”

It is not clear how ISIS – an extremist Sunni Muslim group – differs in its intent from attacks on Israeli civilians by Hamas and other Palestinian Arab terrorists — other than the relative success of Israel to defend itself. The only difference seems to be the identity of the victims, and the fact that oil is involved.

ISIS has seized Iraq’s valuable oil fields, raking in some $3 million per day. The terror group is also rampaging through central parts of the country and continuing to spread through the region into Syria and now even into Lebanon, where the group is proving to be a threat now to the Iranian-backed Shi’ite Muslim Hezbollah terror organization as well.

Several months ago ISIS seized control of two border crossing with Syria, and one with Jordan, where its guerrillas began to trickle in to the Hashemite Kingdom. Even Iran is expressing concerns over the impending threat to its borders. And ISIS operatives have already been spotted in Gaza.

IDF Chief Tries to Reassure Southerners, ‘It’s Safe to Go Home’

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

IDF and Israeli government officials are doing their best to convince southern residents that it’s safe now to return home to Gaza Belt communities.

But Hamas assurances that the terror group intends to resume its rocket and mortar fire promptly at 8 am Friday, combined with the limited technology that has made it impossible for the Code Red alerts to detect incoming mortar shelling from Gaza, raise serious questions in the minds of the residents who say they are the ones who are placing their lives and those of their children on the line.

A lot of Israelis are not buying the government reassurances; nearly 60 percent of those who live along the Gaza border, in fact, says Yair Farjun, head of the Ashkelon Coastal Region council.

Still, IDF Chief of Staff Lt-Gen. Benny Gantz gave it his best shot on Wednesday. Gantz told reporters at a briefing there is “devastation in Gaza, and guilt for the tragedy rests on Hamas leaders,” who he described as “hiding in their basements.”

Gantz stressed that although some 30,000 reservists had been discharged and were returning to their homes, some 55,000 IDF soldiers were still remaining in a staging area outside the Gaza border.

“I am convinced the residents can return to their houses, work their fields, live well here just as it was before,” he said. “Just as there was peace here before, it will be even quieter after,” he sought to reassure.

“The IDF is not going anywhere. It remains to protect people, to do what is necessary, to seek the next challenge. Together with our citizens we will continue to improve security in this area,” he said.

Hamas officials in Cairo threatened Wednesday night to resume rocket fire at 8 am on Friday unless there is “significant progress” in the cease fire negotiations, Israel’s Channel 10 reported Thursday.

Israel reportedly offered generous terms in the talks, according to an Egyptian source who spoke with a Hebrew-language Israeli newspaper. But Israeli representatives refused to compromisee on the issue of disarming terrorist groups in Gaza, the source said.

Chinese Hacker Group Steals Iron Dome Software

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

A Chinese hacker group known as Comment Crew allegedly stole the software design for the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system in 2011.

According to Cyber Engineering Services (CyberESI) CEO Joseph Drissel, the group stole plans online from Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Israel Aerospace Industries and Elisra Group, Reuters reported Wednesday.

Drissel said he decided to go public after warning officials in both the United States and Israel of the breach and finding that neither seemed to take the issue seriously.

CyberESI is a threat intelligence consulting firm based in Columbia, Maryland. He served as acting section chief in a section of the U.S. Defense Cyber Crime Center, part of the U.S. Air Force.

It is not clear what, if any, impact the theft has had on the deployment and implementation of the anti-missile batteries in Israel by the IDF. Some Chinese hacker groups are backed by the Chinese military but it is unclear whether Comment Crew is one of them.

Israel and China have tightened diplomatic ties over the past several years; it is not known whether Drissel’s revelations will have any impact on those relations.

Hezbollah Most Heavily Armed Force in Region Besides Israel

Monday, June 9th, 2014

The Lebanon-based Hezbollah guerrilla fighting force is among the most heavily armed in the region, according to IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, who told the 2014 IDC Herzliya Conference on Monday that Israel is facing a lethal threat.

Israel’s military chief said just Israel and the top five nations of the world currently have more firepower today than Hezbollah. According to Gantz, the only nations more heavily armed than Hezbollah – which is supplied by Iran – are “the U.S., China, Russia, Israel, France, [and] the UK.”

It was a sobering moment for the audience at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, who heard that Israel is facing a new type of threat, one that originates from underground. Terrorists in Lebanon and in Gaza use bunkers, where they store their arms – in much the same way Israelis used underground facilities to produce bullets during the British Mandate to prepare for the 1948 War of Independence.

Attendees also heard the army chief explain that Israel’s neighbor to the north, Syria, is disintegrating. Regardless of what happens on the other side of the border, none of the options will be particularly good for Israel, Gantz explained. He added that “decades of conflict” are likely to continue in Syria, “perhaps more.” Hezbollah is actively involved in that war, fighting to defend President Bashar al-Assad; the experience gained in that fight may well aid the terrorist organization later in a future war against Israel, Gantz warned.

Moreover, a second front is again developing in the south with Gaza, where mid-to-long range missiles have again been stockpiled for a future war with Israel as well. Both the ruling Hamas terror organization and its allied Islamic Jihad terrorist group are fully backed by Iran, as is Hezbollah. All three would function as proxies for Iran, which has not given up its dream of annihilating Israel.

Nor has Iran abandoned its goal of developing a nuclear weapon of mass destruction, Gantz said.

Israel will take whatever action is deemed appropriate to neutralize that existential threat against the Jewish State, he said.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/hezbollah-most-heavily-armed-force-in-region-besides-israel/2014/06/09/

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