Rudolf and Helga Frei (holding up the sign) dedicate a new bomb shelter at Kibbutz Magen. From far left: David Parsons (Vice President ICEJ), Nicole Yoder (ICEJ Aid Director), Dr. Jurgen Buhler (President ICEJ) and Rabbi Shmuel Bowman (Executive Director Operation Lifeshield). (Credit: David Brummer/ Breaking Israel News)
For several months now – since at least March – Israel’s southern frontier communities abutting the Gaza Strip have been living under almost constant Hamas-inspired Palestinian terrorism.
Arson terrorism as it was known – the releasing of incendiary kites and balloons, seemingly harmless children’s toys, but with a very real sting in their tails – were sent toward Israel’s arable fields. Carried by the helpful West-East breeze blowing off the Mediterranean Sea, these incendiary devices have scorched around 9,000 acres of agricultural land.
Now the harvest is in and plans for winter planting move on apace. But the terrorists in Gaza are not standing idly by. There is currently less vegetation to burn, so instead of sending kites or balloons with flaming tails, they now send them with hand grenades and crude homemade ordinances attached. That may give it the impression of being harmless, but nothing could be further from the truth. They are intended to wound, to maim and even to kill.
To counter the debilitating effects of the arson terrorism, the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ) began a campaign to help communities in Israel’s south. The response was magnificent and prayers for Israel’s safety have been matched by tangible, practical help.
At Kibbutz Magen, a mere four-and-a-half kilometers away from the Gaza border, Christian donations have resulted in the purchasing of bomb shelters. Six of the seven new steel bomb shelters – which are much lighter than the concrete ones, but equally as tough – were donated from ICEJ Switzerland, made possible through the generosity of the Rudolf and Helga Frei family. They were present to dedicate the shelter on Kibbutz Magen, also made possible because of the ICEJ’s strategic partnership with local Israeli non-profit Operation Lifeshield. As Shmuel Bowman, Operation Lifeshield’s Executive Director said, “In partnership with the ICEJ we work to save and protect lives in Israel. Every life is sacred and there are people here who need protection from terrorism.”
ICEJ’s President, Dr. Jurgen Buhler, was also present at the dedication and explained about an amazing coincidence. “The ICEJ wants to always be with the people of Israel. And in its [Israel’s] 70th year, this is the 70th bomb shelter that we have dedicated.”
Both Shoshi Oroni and Gilad Yarkoni, director of the kibbutz and the mayor of the Eshkol region, respectively, welcomed the ICEJ visitors and expressed their gratitude for helping people to feel a little safer.
Yarkoni expressed his personal thanks for the love and understanding that emanated from the ICEJ to the citizens of the Eshkol region. He used the example of the kibbutz children, who had minutes earlier provided a karate demonstration at Magen’s dojo. “It’s a simple thing,” he said. “It’s good for those children to know they have a place to run. Think of all those people connected with these children. We have a greater sense of security now.
Traveling approximately 15 kilometers northwest to Kibbutz Kisufim (literally Yearning), one is struck by how burnt the ground looks and how much damage has been done. Elan Isaacson, Head of Security in the Eshkol Region explained that between 500-600 of the 1,900 fires that have broken out in the region since March have occurred in either Kisufim or Be’eri. He and his team now have 34 fire trailers – each capable of holding 750 liters of water. They are 4×4 vehicles allowing them to traverse terrain that regular fire trucks cannot and despite the invaluable help that fire crews from as far away as the Golan and Haifa provided, they were not familiar with the lay of the land.
Eleven of the 17 fire trailers donated this summer, as the arson terrorism was at its height, were provided by Eagle Mountain International Church from Ft. Worth, Texas. It is clearly a community and a church that practices what it preaches. Part of the Word of Faith evangelical stream and heavily influenced by Pastor Kenneth Copeland, Eagle Mountain is a firm believer in its support of the people of God in the land of God.
There was a mixture of resignation and resolution at the unveiling of the bomb shelter and the fire truck. Resignation that the frontier communities inhabit a world – which is actually difficult to imagine – where implacable foes seem to assess that they can dislodge Jewish communities through terrorism. The resolution part was equally obvious; the people in Israel’s southern communities are there to stay. They haven’t anywhere else to go.
Menachem Begin in December 1942 wearing the Polish Army uniform of Gen. Anders’ forces with his wife Aliza and David Yutan; (back row) Moshe Stein and Israel Epstein
(photo credit: JABOTINSKY ARCHIVES)
During the inauguration of a memorial to the victims of the Siege of Leningrad in Jerusalem’s Sacher Park on January 24, 2020, before the climax of Holocaust remembrance events at which Russian President Vladimir Putin was given a central platform, we were stunned to hear a rendition of The Blue Kerchief (Siniy
Giant figures are seen during the 87th carnival parade of Aalst February 15, 2015
The annual carnival in Aalst, Belgium, is expected to take place on Sunday with even more antisemitic elements than in previous years.
Aalst’s organizers have sold hundreds of “rabbi kits” for revelers to dress as hassidic Jews in the carnival’s parade. The kit includes oversized noses, sidelocks (peyot) and black hats. The organizers plan to bring back floats similar to the one displayed in 2019 featuring oversized dolls of Jews, with rats on their shoulders, holding banknotes.
Pope Francis waves as he arrives at the Basilica of Saint Nicholas in the southern Italian coastal city of Bari, Italy February 23, 2020. Photo: REUTERS/Remo Casilli.
Pope Francis on Sunday warned against “inequitable solutions” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying they would only be a prelude to new crises, in an apparent reference to US President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace proposal.
Francis made his comments in the southern Italian port city of Bari, where he traveled to conclude a meeting of bishops from all countries in the Mediterranean basin.
Palestinians walk past a shop selling fruits in Ramallah, Feb. 20, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Mohamad Torokman.
Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have reached an agreement to end a five-month long trade dispute, officials said on Thursday.
The dispute, which opened a new front in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, began in September when the PA announced a boycott of Israel calves. The PA exercises limited self-rule in the West Bank under interim peace deals.
Antisemitic caricatures on display at the annual carnival in Aalst, Belgium. Photo: Raphael Ahren via Twitter.
Disturbing images emerged on Sunday of the annual carnival at Aalst, Belgium, showing an astounding number of antisemitic themes, costumes, displays and statements.
Israeli journalist Raphael Ahren documented people dressed as caricatures of Orthodox Jews, a fake “wailing wall” attacking critics of the parade, blatantly antisemitic characters and puppets wearing traditional Jewish clothes and sporting huge noses.
Feb 02, 2020 0The remarks from the US official came in wake of the Palestinian decision to reject the administration’s peace plan. US PRESIDENT Donald Trump and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrive to...
The stench of anti-Semitism always hovers over Switzerland’s Lake Geneva when the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is meeting there. The foul emanations reached a new nadir last week with UNHRC’s publication of a “database” of companies doing business in the disputed territories in Israel.
Following the publication of the list, Bruno Stagno Ugarte, deputy director for advocacy of NGO Human Rights Watch, stated, “The long-awaited release of the U.N. settlement business database should put all companies on notice: To do business with illegal settlements [sic] is to aid in the commission of war crimes.”
One of the many things that annoys me about politicians is how sure they are of themselves. Everything is black and white. Every idea is good or bad. Take globalism, for example. You either love it or hate it. It works or it doesn’t.
Another thing that annoys me is how so much of a politician’s life revolves around power: Do everything you can to get it, and everything you can to keep it.
Why am I ranting? Because, while our politicians have been consumed with power and the media with the fights over power, a threat to our nation has been virtually ignored.
Blue and White Party leaders Benny Gantz and Yair Lapid are establishing their diplomatic credentials in the immediate run-up to Israel’s March 2 election with an insult to a U.S. administration that has arguably provided Israel with more diplomatic gains than any previous administration.
The Times of Israel reported that at a campaign stop in front of English-speaking Israelis, Gantz accused Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “of neglecting bipartisan ties in favor of exclusive support from U.S. President Donald Trump’s Republican Party,” under the headline “Gantz pledges to mend ties with U.S. Democrats if elected.”
Bipartisanship was in short supply at the State of the Union address earlier this month—with one notable exception.
Nancy Pelosi had been looking dyspeptic, shuffling the papers she would later rip to shreds, when President Donald Trump reminded his audience that “the United States is leading a 59-nation diplomatic coalition against the socialist dictator of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro.”
Suddenly, the House Speaker applauded. Trump then introduced “the true and legitimate president of Venezuela: Juan Guaidó.”
The law professor Alan Dershowitz has thrown a legal hand-grenade into America’s political civil war by claiming to have evidence that former President Barack Obama “personally asked” the FBI to investigate someone “on behalf” of Obama’s “close ally,” billionaire financier George Soros.
He made his cryptic remark in an interview defending U.S. President Donald Trump against claims he interfered in the prosecution of his former adviser, Roger Stone.