Thursday, June 16, 2016
NEXT WAR WITH HAMAS MUST BE ISRAELS LAST,TOP ISRAELI DEFENSE OFFICIAL SAYS.
28 And when these things begin to come to pass,(ALL THE PROPHECY SIGNS FROM THE BIBLE) then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption (RAPTURE) draweth nigh.
29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree,(ISRAEL) and all the trees;(ALL INDEPENDENT COUNTRIES)
30 When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.(ISRAEL LITERALLY BECAME AND INDEPENDENT COUNTRY JUST BEFORE SUMMER IN MAY 14,1948.)
3 A fire devoureth (ATOMIC BOMB) before them;(RUSSIAN-ARAB-MUSLIM ARMIES AGAINST ISRAEL) and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.(ATOMIC BOMB AFFECT)
12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their eyes shall consume away in their holes,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB)(BECAUSE NUKES HAVE BEEN USED ON ISRAELS ENEMIES)(GOD PROTECTS ISRAEL AND ALWAYS WILL)
13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.(1/2-3 BILLION DIE IN WW3)(THIS IS AN ATOMIC BOMB EFFECT)
47 And say to the forest of the south, Hear the word of the LORD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.
1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven;(FROM ATOMIC BOMBS) and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
And here are the bounderies of the land that Israel will inherit either through war or peace or God in the future. God says its Israels land and only Israels land. They will have every inch God promised them of this land in the future.
Egypt east of the Nile River, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, The southern part of Turkey and the Western Half of Iraq west of the Euphrates. Gen 13:14-15, Psm 105:9,11, Gen 15:18, Exe 23:31, Num 34:1-12, Josh 1:4.ALL THIS LAND ISRAEL WILL DEFINATELY OWN IN THE FUTURE, ITS ISRAELS NOT ISHMAELS LAND.12 TRIBES INHERIT LAND IN THE FUTURE
Next war with Hamas must be Israel’s last, top defense official says-Hinting at new Gaza strategy after 3 conflicts in 7 years, senior source says ‘war of attrition is not an option’-By Raoul Wootliff June 15, 2016, 5:43 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
A senior Defense Ministry official said Wednesday that the next round of fighting in the Gaza Strip against the Hamas terror group must be the last.“A war of attrition is not an option. The next confrontation must be the last in terms of Hamas’s regime,” the unnamed official told Israeli reporters at a briefing.Israel has arguably been involved in a war of attrition against Hamas for years, with each side slowly grinding away at the other.With strict border control and occasional large-scale operations, Israel works to deplete Hamas’s supply of weapons and fighters. Meanwhile Hamas, with rockets and “terror tunnels,” hopes to diminish Israeli resolve.In the IDF’s last foray into the Gaza Strip, in a 50-day 2014 conflict known in Israel as Operation Protective Edge, the goal was not to destroy Hamas but to deliver a “meaningful blow” to the terror organization and its tunnel network, according to the army’s own account.Israel previously launched operations in Gaza in December 2008 and November 2012.The official stressed that Israel does not seek another war, but says “Hamas is a growing threat.”“Their goal is destroying the State of Israel,” he added.In his first meeting with senior generals after appointed as defense minister last month, Avigdor Liberman hinted at a new strategy to deal with Hamas, suggesting he would not allow continued military conflicts in Gaza.“We don’t have the luxury of conducting drawn-out wars of attrition,” Liberman told the Israel Defense Forces’ General Staff on his first day of the job.The defense official also lashed out at Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, describing him as “the number one problem for Israel,” and saying he was not interested in bringing abut a peace agreement.“Abu Mazen isn’t interested in progressing anywhere or beginning any process [towards peace],” he said. “That man doesn’t have the public support or the will to reach any arrangement or agreement.”Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.
PM rejects ‘panic’ over reported cut in US missile defense aid-Opposition slams Netanyahu after White House rejects Congress’s bid to up funding; Netanyahu insists that budget will increase-By Raphael Ahren and Rebecca Shimoni Stoil June 15, 2016, 3:00 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday dismissed widespread “panic” over reports implying the US government is refusing to increase financial aid for Israeli missile defense.While not denying the reports, which prompted opposition politicians to harshly criticize Netanyahu, a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office insisted that American aid for missile defense system protecting Israel would ultimately be increased rather than cut.On Tuesday, the White House said it opposed a move by the House of Representatives to increase funding for Israeli missile defense procurement by an additional $455 million above the administration’s budget request for the 2017 fiscal year.Due to “multiple misleading reports,” the Prime Minister’s Office on Wednesday issued a statement insisting “there is no cut in US aid.” Rather, there is an “internal debate” between Congress and the White House over the size of the annual increase to the American missile defense program.Netanyahu is seeking to anchor this additional aid as a part of his ongoing negotiations over the extension of an US-Israel memorandum of understanding, which regulates US military aid to Israel, the statement noted.“Not only will the security assistance for missile defense not be cut, it will be increased,” it said.On Wednesday morning, the Israeli opposition was quick to blame Netanyahu’s well-publicized spats with US President Barack Obama for the White House’s position on additional funding for missile defense assistance.“American aid is essential for protecting our citizens, and now, because of the prime minister’s ego games, we’re losing a critical part of it,” opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Zionist Union) wrote on his Facebook page.He accused the prime minister of “arrogance and irresponsibility” in his dealings with the Obama administration. “If Israel will remain without air defense system in the next war, we can already now set up an inquiry into how Netanyahu makes decisions about national security,” he said.MK Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid) called on Jerusalem not to wait for the upcoming US elections but to sign an agreement over military aid with the current administration in order to avoid taking any risks.“We have to improve our relations with the US. The deterioration of ties leads to a situation in which issues that we used to be able to sort out in close discussions and negotiations among friends have become raucous public debates on matters critical to the State of Israel,” he said.The prime minister flatly rejected these statements. “Attempts to turn the dialogue with the US into a domestic Israeli political tool are inappropriate, and all expressions of panic are unwarranted,” his office said in its statement.In a letter to Congress, the Obama administration had listed its numerous objections to the House’s version of the defense appropriations bill for the coming fiscal year.The administration has criticized the bill for budgetary sleight of hand, complaining that it redirects funds from the overseas operations war chest toward other purposes in an effort to meet spending targets. In the letter, the administration said the legislation “fails to provide our troops with the resources needed to keep our nation safe.”The objection to increased aid to Israel came at the same time that the administration criticized “the reduction of $324 million from the FY 2017 Budget request for US ballistic missile defense programs.”Without explicitly drawing parallels, the letter noted that “furthermore, the Administration opposes the addition of $455 million above the FY 2017 Budget request for Israeli missile defense procurement and cooperative development programs.” The administration had initially requested $103.835 million for Israeli cooperative programs.The US provides funds for Israel’s missile weapons systems separately from the annual $3.1 billion in military financing it gives Jerusalem to purchase weapons from the US.In 2014, Congress increased US funding for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system to $351 million for the fiscal year 2015, from $235 million the previous year. The Iron Dome missile defense system successfully intercepted hundreds of Hamas rockets during last summer’s war in Gaza. After the 2014 conflict, funding was bolstered by another $225 million to assist Israel in replenishing its Iron Dome missile stockpile.Additionally, there was US funding for joint development of anti-missile systems Arrow III and David’s Sling.In the parallel to the National Defense Authorization Bill passed by the House, the Senate Tuesday authorized a total of $600.8 million in anti-missile defense programs for Israel, more than quadrupling the administration’s requested funding for Israeli missile defense.Unlike the House version, the Senate version, which enjoyed broad enough Democratic support to defeat a presidential veto, did not subsidize additional spending through the Overseas Contingency Operations war account.The House and Senate will now take their different versions of the defense spending measures to conference, where they will hammer out a final compromise version of each bill. The process this year is expected to be time-consuming given the gaps in the way that the House and Senate versions propose to fund defense spending.Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.
REBUILT 3RD TEMPLE
1 And there was given me a(MEASURING) reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.
2 But the court which is without the temple leave out,(TO THE WORLD NATIONS) and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.(JERUSALEM DIVIDED BUT THE 3RD TEMPLE ALLOWED TO BE REBUILT)
27 And he( THE ROMAN,EU PRESIDENT) shall confirm the covenant with many for one week:(1X7=7 YEARS) and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease,(3 1/2 yrs in TEMPLE SACRIFICES STOPPED) and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
Knesset members to resume Temple Mount visits-After eight-month ban, police propose allowing Muslim lawmakers to return in early July, Jewish MKs the following week-By Times of Israel staff June 13, 2016, 11:16 pm
An eight-month ban on political leaders visiting the Temple Mount is likely to be lifted by the end of June.The Knesset Ethics Committee is set to vote Tuesday on ending the restriction it imposed on lawmakers last October amid escalating violence over the flashpoint Jerusalem holy site, including Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis and violent confrontations between security forces and Palestinians in the West Bank.The move also follows a declaration last month by several MKs from the Arab Joint List that they would visit the Temple Mount during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which began June 6, whether or not the ban remained in force.The announcement led to a meeting two weeks ago in Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein’s office, attended by Israel Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich and Jerusalem Police chief Yoram Halevy, at which the police officials said they no longer opposed such visits, citing an updated intelligence assessment indicating that politicians’ visits to the holy sites on the Mount were not likely to result in renewed violence.In a compromise proposed by police, Muslim lawmakers would be allowed to renew their visits to the site in the last week of Ramadan — corresponding to the first week of July — and Jewish lawmakers would be allowed to renew their visits the following week.A Knesset official told the Walla news site that the continued lifting of the ban would depend on police assessments of the potential fallout from such visits.The news was welcomed Monday by Likud MK Yehudah Glick, a controversial activist who has campaigned for allowing Jewish prayer on the Mount. Under a status quo agreement in force since Israel captured the Mount — Judaism’s holiest site and the third holiest place in Islam — in the 1967 Six Day War, Jews are allowed to visit but not pray there.On Twitter, Glick said he “calls on all parties to join together to transform the place into a world center for peace, reconciliation and coexistence.”
US envoy to Israel: We will fight ‘pernicious’ BDS efforts-Washington’s policy is to ‘vigorously oppose and counter such measures,’ Dan Shapiro tells Herzliya Conference-By Times of Israel staff June 15, 2016, 7:33 pm
The “pernicious” BDS campaign against Israel runs against American interests, and some of its supporters “have an anti-Israel, and in some cases even anti-Semitic, agenda,” Washington’s ambassador to Israel said Wednesday.Ambassador Dan Shapiro spoke out against the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement in his speech to the annual Herzliya Conference, saying that while those who promote it have the right to do so, “no one should have any doubt that the policy of the US government is to vigorously oppose and counter such initiatives.”The US, having been subjected to the Arab oil embargo in the 1970s, knows what it’s like, he said, and Washington sided with Israel then, too.“Others may advocate boycotting Israel — but we are doing the exact opposite,” he told the conference. “We are actively seeking to deepen our economic partnership with Israel. We encourage American companies to invest in Israel, and then celebrate their successes. We are recruiting Israeli businesses to invest in the United-States.”-Despite American opposition to the BDS movement, Shapiro said substantive progress in peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians would better combat “those who advocate isolation.“True supporters of BDS have an anti-Israel, and in some cases even anti-Semitic, agenda, independent of efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” he said. “But we must also reach those who support a two-state solution, but who might be tempted by the misguided arguments of the BDS movement.”New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last week signed an executive order banning New York state agencies and departments from investing in companies or groups that, as a policy, promote or engage in boycotts, divestment or sanctions against Israel.The order also requires the state to draw up a public list of companies that engage in or promote BDS.Cuomo’s order stands out, however, as it enacts opposition to BDS in the fourth-most populous state — and the home to the largest number of Jews in the country. And it places Cuomo, a prominent governor and national figure, at the center of the American debate over Israel.JTA contributed to this report.
ISRAEL SATAN COMES AGAINST
1 CHRONICLES 21:1
1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.
1 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I (GOD) will shew thee:
2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
3 And I will bless them that bless thee,(ISRAELIS) and curse (DESTROY) him that curseth thee:(DESTROY THEM) and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.
11 Behold, all they that were incensed against thee (ISRAEL) shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing;(DESTROYED) and they that strive with thee shall perish.(ISRAEL HATERS WILL BE TOTALLY DESTROYED)
7 Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble;(ISRAEL) but he shall be saved out of it.
1 And at that time shall Michael(ISRAELS WAR ANGEL) stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people:(ISRAEL) and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation(May 14,48) even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro,(WORLD TRAVEL,IMMIGRATION) and knowledge shall be increased.(COMPUTERS,CHIP IMPLANTS ETC)
Intelligence chief warns of growing gaps between Israel, neighbors-At Herzliya Conference, Maj. Gen. Herzi Halevy describes a strong, powerful Israel in an unstable Middle East; warns of potential conflict with Hezbollah, Hamas-By Judah Ari Gross June 15, 2016, 1:15 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Since the Arab Spring in 2011, Israel has gotten stronger, more stable and wealthier than its neighbors. But that’s not necessarily something to be proud of — it’s something that should be worrisome, according to Military Intelligence chief Maj. Gen. Herzi Halevy.In a speech Wednesday at this year’s Herzliya Conference, Halevy introduced a portmanteau to describe a dynamic Middle East: mishtarkev, which he said was made up of the Hebrew words for improve, mishtaper, and complex, murkav.His speech gave a general overview of the region, but did not reveal any information not previously released by the Israel Defense Forces. He touched on the Syrian civil war, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Gaza, terror in the West Bank and the Islamic State group.Each of these threats has existed for years, but one area of concern Halevy touched on was the growing disparity between Israel and its neighbors.On the one hand, Israel’s status as a strong, stable democracy in the Middle East is something that should be treasured and not forgotten.“Maybe because of the Holocaust we carry with us a feeling of persecution,” he said. “But around us, we’re seen as a very strong, aggressive, unexpected and capable figure. That’s something important for us to preserve.”But on the other hand, though Israel may be stable, its neighbors are not. And that does not bode well for the Jewish state. Economic strife can give rise to religious extremism and terrorism, the Military Intelligence chief warned.“There’s a gap between us and everyone around us, and that gap is growing,” Halevy said.“If you look at per capita gross domestic product, in Israel we’re approaching NIS 40,000 ($10,300). Around us there are countries, that [our GDP] is five times greater than theirs, seven times greater, 10 times and even 20 times greater,” Halevy said.“This shouldn’t make us proud, it should make us worried,” he said. “When your neighborhood deteriorates, the value of your home does not go up.”Regarding terror not only in Israel, but around the world, Halevy pointed to the internet and other technologies that make it easier for individuals to carry out attacks without having to join extremist organizations.“You don’t have to own a big hotel chain to rent out a room on Airbnb,” Halevy said, referring to the popular home rental website. “You also don’t need to belong to a large terror organization to carry out a terror attack.”As could be seen in the attack in Orlando, Tel Aviv, Paris, Turkey and elsewhere around the world, the Islamic State is rapidly becoming a dominant force in international terrorism, with each attack inspiring the next one, Halevy said.The Islamic State is the “bad in the world, the Amalek of 2016,” he said, using the name of a biblical tribe that is seen as the epitome of evil.-The Third Lebanon War-On Israel’s borders, Halevy pointed to situations that are currently stable, but are liable to deteriorate quickly.In the south, Hamas for now is not interested in another round of conflict with Israel after the 2014 Gaza war, known in Israel as Operation Protective Edge, he said, “but next month that could be different.”Halevy put particular emphasis on the threat of Hezbollah in Lebanon, as Israel prepares to mark 10 years since the Second Lebanon War next month.Hezbollah is believed to have an arsenal of more than 100,000 missiles and rockets, along with weapons systems “that they never had before,” Halevy said.The intelligence chief wouldn’t say the next round of violence with the Iran-backed terror group would result in mass casualties among Israel’s civilian population, but came close.“In the Yom Kippur War, we had one person killed on the home front from a Syrian missile. The situation in the next conflict will be completely different,” he said.Halevy revealed how close Israel came to experiencing that conflict last year, when Hezbollah fired seven anti-tank missiles at IDF troops on the northern border, killing two.“I don’t think Hezbollah realized the full potential for casualties there,” he said.If Hezbollah had succeeded in killing the total possible number of soldiers, Halevy said, “our response would have been different. Then their response would have been different. And maybe today on the radio they would be talking about the Third Lebanon War with Hezbollah and not just the second.”Though the IDF has no current plans to attack Hezbollah, the army has never been more prepared, he said.“If our enemies knew our capabilities and our intelligence, they would spare themselves the next conflict,” Halevy said.“I’m going to say this with all due caution, but there has never been an army that knows as much about its enemy as we know about Hezbollah,” the intelligence chief said.“But still, the next war will not be simple, it will not be easy,” he said.-Iran vs. the ‘pragmatic Sunnis’-Halevy pointed to two competing groups in the Muslim world: the Shiite Iran, which despite its “legitimate” status in the wake of last year’s Iran nuclear deal continues to fund attacks on Israel, and the “pragmatic” Sunni nations led by Saudi Arabia, whose interests have increasingly begun to align with Israel.Throughout the Middle East, both Iran and Saudi Arabia have lots of fingers in lots of pots. The two countries have direct involvement in the Yemenite and Syrian civil wars.In Syria, Iran has already lost “250 people, and that’s just their fighters from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. That’s not counting the Shiite militias that are managed by Iran,” he said.Though the threat of a nuclear Iran has been put off for a few years in light of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed last year, the Islamic Republic continues to develop its nuclear program — albeit at a dramatically slower rate — only now it has “international legitimacy” to do so, Halevy said.Now that Iran has been brought to the bargaining table, the country has also gained diplomatic legitimacy, he said.All this, despite the fact that it continues to call for Israel’s destruction and gives the military wings of Hamas, Hezbollah and the Islamic Jihad “60 percent of their budgets,” Halevy said.Iran has also taken the lead on the cyber warfare front against Israel, he said, carrying out digital attacks themselves and also providing training to Hezbollah to do the same.On the other side, he said, are the “pragmatic Sunnis” — mostly the Gulf states — who are leading the fight against Iran.Saudi Arabia today is “not the same Saudi Arabia we saw a year and a half ago,” Halevy said.“Saudi Arabia is more proactive, trying to lead the Sunni camp in the Middle East. It’s a country that has perhaps stabilized and gotten stronger in its fight against Iran,” he said.“Some of the interests of the pragmatic Sunni countries are getting closer to our interests,” Halevy said. “This is an interesting development, and there is an opportunity in it.”
Khaled Mashaal to step down as Hamas leader — report-Political chief said to forgo reelection bid in upcoming leadership vote-By Dov Lieber June 15, 2016, 8:58 am-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Hamas’s political chief, Khaled Mashaal, will not try to retain his office in the upcoming elections for the leadership of the terror group, which rules Gaza, Arab media reported on Tuesday.The London-based Arabic newspaper Rai Alyoum reported Tuesday that Mashaal will not run in the next elections, scheduled to take place by the end of the year. Unlike the last elections in 2013, when the Hamas leader claimed he would retire but then ran in the elections, this time the decision is final, the report said.He will publicly announce his decision before preparations for the elections begin, the report said.Mashaal, 56, is a veteran politician with close ties to regional powers Qatar, Egypt and Turkey. He has been key to Hamas’s attempts to break out of political isolation following its violent takeover of Gaza in 2007. He has led the movement since 1996.In 2013, Mashaal ran unopposed and was reelected by a majority in the movement’s decision-making Shura Council, which is believed to have about 60 members.Still, he has slowly been losing power within the terror group, as a rift between Hamas’s military wing and political leaders continues to deepen.Mashaal, a supporter of violent campaigns against the Jewish state, has suggested he could accept a Palestinian state alongside Israel, but has not said if such a state would end the conflict or only be an interim step to an Islamic state in all of historic Palestine, including what is now Israel.Possible successors to Mashaal include Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas’s former prime minister; Mahmoud al-Zahar, one of the co-founders of the movement; and Moussa Abu Marzouk, who is Mashaal’s deputy and held the post before 1996.The head of Hamas’s political bureau has traditionally been someone of high political standing living outside of Gaza, especially as traveling in and out of the Strip is difficult.The Rai Alyoum report speculated that if that tradition were to continue, Marzouk, who currently lives in Cairo, has the best chance of taking over. Additionally, the paper wrote, Marzouk’s deep connections with Cairo are very important to Hamas, which has been working tirelessly to repair its relations with the powerful Arab country following the downfall of the Muslim Brotherhood from power in 2013. The Muslim Brotherhood is the movement’s spiritual and formal political benefactor.The Gaza-based Yahya Sinwar, a high-ranking Hamas operative with deep ties to the group’s military wing, is another possible contender to take the reigns of leadership.Hamas has four components — activists in Gaza, the West Bank and in exile, and members imprisoned by Israel. Each of the four groups chooses local leaders as well as delegates to the Shura Council.
Abbas: Israel’s ‘daily attacks’ on Al-Aqsa a ‘red line’-Palestinian Authority president says ‘no compromise’ possible at the holy site-By Dov Lieber June 13, 2016, 10:35 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas asserted on Sunday night that Israel and “its settlers” are committing daily “attacks and violations” at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem, which he said constitute a “red line.”The remarks came during a visit to Ramallah by former Palestinian guards at the holy site, as well as by the Fatah movement’s secretary in Jerusalem, Adnan Ghaith, the official PA news agency Wafa reported.Abbas said the Al-Aqsa guards play a “great role in in defending our holy sites” from the “abusive and violating measures taken by the occupation.”“The blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque is a red line and we will not accept any infringement on it,” he added.The Temple Mount, on which the Al-Aqsa Mosque is located, is sanctified by Jews as the place where the Jewish temples stood in biblical times.Tensions at the tinderbox site have been one of the main catalysts for the current round of Palestinian violence in Israel and the West Bank, in which 33 Israelis and three foreign nationals have been killed since October. Some 200 Palestinians have also been killed, about two-thirds of them while attacking Israelis and the rest during clashes with troops, according to the Israeli army.The Palestinian leadership has long accused Israel of trying to change the status quo on the Temple Mount, an accusation Israel vehemently denies.In early march, Abbas accused Israel of attempting to “judaize” the Temple Mount. And in November, he said he had cautioned against “violations committed by the settlers and extremists under the protection of the Israeli occupying forces against the sanctity of Christian and Muslim holy places in Jerusalem, particularly aimed at changing the historic status quo at Al-Haram Al-Sharif [the Temple Mount] and Al-Aqsa Mosque that existed before the year 1967 and thereafter.”In one well-known comment made in September 2015 that was later criticized by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Abbas said Jews were sullying the Temple Mount “with their filthy feet.”Times of Israel staff contributed to this report
Top diplomat: Ties with Arab states are secret due to ‘sensitivity’-Palestinian issue is ‘pretty close to the bottom’ of agenda for both Israelis and Arabs, Dore Gold says-By Raphael Ahren June 15, 2016, 6:04 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Israel’s budding ties with the Arab world need to remain clandestine to respect the Arab public’s “sensitivities,” Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold said Wednesday.The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is “pretty close to the bottom” of the agendas of both Israelis and the Arab world, Gold said, reiterating that — according to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “strategy” — an Israeli rapprochement with Sunni Arab states will take place before a peace agreement with the Palestinians can be reached.Speaking at the annual Herzliya Conference, the country’s top diplomat surmised that every Israeli would love to see Israeli reporters “walking in an Arab capital, where Israelis never ventured before.”“It’s a great picture, it’s a great story,” he added, recalling the excitement of seeing Israeli journalist first report from Cairo and Amman, after Israel signed peace agreements with Egypt and Jordan in 1979 and 1994 respectively.“It is very gratifying to get that kind of coverage. But we have to be very careful with our Arab neighbors. They have sensitivities. They have populations which may not always look favorably upon that coverage,” added Gold, who has conducted a number of meetings with officials from Arab states with which Israel has no formal relations.“And so rather than run to tell your friends where you’ve been and put it in the newspaper, we have to be extremely cautious and build these relationships piece by piece, and not necessarily put it out in public,” he said.Critics often admonish the government for the frozen peace process, Gold noted, saying that this was not necessarily the case in reality.“Under the ice there is a lot of hot water moving,” he said. “And we hope that we will be able to use the new relations in the Arab world, combined with our new relations in Asia and Africa, to build a better situation for our relations between us and our Palestinian neighbors.”This is Netanyahu’s approach, and is one which he tries to implement, Gold said. “That is the strategy. Twenty, thirty years ago everyone said, solve the Palestinian issue and you’ll have peace with the Arab world. An increasingly we are becoming convinced: it’s the exact opposite. It’s a different order we have to create. And that’s what we’re going to do.”Gold said that while he could not promise that this approach would yield immediate results, Israel would make every effort to seize the opportunity.“I can guarantee when we see a great strategic moment emerging, when the planets are lined up in a way they have never been before since the modern Middle East emerged after World War II, we will exploit every effort, we will turn over every rock, to make sure that we bring a safer Middle East to the State of Israel,” he said.Gold recounted a recent encounter with a senior diplomat from an unnamed Arab country, in which the two men compared notes. To his surprise, Gold found that they had “identical” worries and concerns. The urgent establishment of a Palestinian state did not feature prominently on the men’s list of talking points, Gold recalled.“I am not trying to play football with the Palestinian issue but in fact on both papers the Palestinian issue was not the number one issue. It was pretty close to the bottom,” he said.“That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try and find ways of getting a breakthrough with our Palestinian neighbors. We work on that. But we have to realize that that isn’t any longer the currency on which you build ties in much of the Sunni Arab world. Although the Palestinian issue is important in public opinion.”
In first, Israel elected to head a permanent UN committee-Danny Danon hails ‘historic achievement,’ will chair General Assembly’s legal panel, which also deals with counter-terrorism-By Raphael Ahren June 13, 2016, 10:04 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
For the first time ever, Israel was elected to head a permanent committee at the upcoming United Nations General Assembly, despite intense efforts by Arab and Muslim states to stop the nomination.In a secret ballot Monday in New York, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon was elected chairman of the GA’s Sixth Committee, which deals with legal issues.“This is a historic achievement for the State of Israel. We broke the glass ceiling: Despite the opposition of many countries, including Iran and others that tried to prevent the vote, we managed to be elected for the first time to head a committee at the UN,” Danon said.In the past, Israeli diplomats have presided over other, less prestigious committees at the UN and even co-chaired the GA, but never headed one of the GA’s six main committees. “The Sixth Committee is the primary forum for the consideration of legal questions in the General Assembly,” according to the UN.Among the issues it is expected to deal with at this fall’s GA are “measures to eliminate international terrorism,” and “the rule of law at the national and international levels.”“One of Ambassador Danon’s first tasks in his new position will be to further the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism,” the Israeli delegation to the UN in New York said in a press release.“Israel is a world leader in international law and in fighting terrorism. We are pleased to have the opportunity to share our knowledge with the countries of the world,” Danon said.He was nominated for the job by the Western European and Others Group in the UN, whose turn it was to pick a chairman for the committee. Israel has been a temporary member of the Western European and Others Group since 2000 and joined permanently in December 2013.The chairmanships of the GA main committees are allocated on a rotational basis and are usually confirmed without a vote. In this case, however, Yemen, on behalf of the Arab Group, challenged Israel’s nomination and asked for a vote. In a secret ballot Monday, in which all 193 UN member states could vote, Israel was elected. Congratulations immediately started pouring in from Western states that supported Jerusalem’s bid.Mazel tov, @IsraelinUN! @NorwayUN https://t.co/1mlbTjcjLv-— (((NorwayinIsrael))) (@NorwayinIsrael) June 13, 2016-Congrats @IsraelinUN !! https://t.co/0TTkuT8G9c— Canada in Israel (@CanEmbIsrael) June 13, 2016-The Palestinians had started protesting Israel’s nomination last week. “It is ironic that Israel, a state that continues to breach international law and conventions, international humanitarian law and countless UN resolutions, is being nominated to head a legal committee that aims to promote international law and protect basic human rights and freedoms,” Hanan Ashrawi, a top Palestine Liberation Organization official, said Wednesday.By nominating Israel, the West European and Other Group, which includes Australia and New Zealand, was “making a mockery of the international legal system and rewarding Israel for its flagrant violations of international law and acts of collective punishment and violence,” Ashrawi added.On Sunday, the Arab League convened diplomats from the countries planning to nominate Israel for the Sixth Committee chairmanship and informed them of the Arab world’s displeasure with the move. It does not make sense for Israel to chair the GA’s legal committee as long as the country continues to violate the Palestinians’ basic rights, Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby told the Western diplomats.The Hamas terrorist organization slammed Israel’s nomination as “shameful and disrespectful to UN rules and bylaws,” with the group’s spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri calling on the UN to retract the “catastrophic” move.“This nomination encourages the occupation to continue its terrorist policies against the Palestinian people,” he stated in a press release.Other players also took steps to fight Israel’s nomination, such as the Non-Aligned Movement. Iran, for instance, tried to send a letter to UN member states urging them to reject the Israeli candidacy. “The Iranian letter was not published and their attempt failed,” according to the Israeli UN delegation, which credited itself and the Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem for a “lengthy and difficult diplomatic battle” to ensure the successful vote.“We will not allow dictatorships and anti-Israel countries to harm our standing in the international community. Those who tried to block our appointment would be well advised to take note of the jurisdiction of this committee, as they have much to learn about international law,” Danon declared.The Palestinians’ “hysterical” reaction to Israel’s nomination was nothing new, Daniel Meron, who heads the Foreign Ministry’s UN and international organizations division, told The Times of Israel on Monday.“Time after time, whenever Israel comes up with a candidate for a post or an initiative, there is an attempt by the Arab Group to challenge Israel,” he said. Even when Israel proposes moves to help advance developing countries, the Arabs will always try to sabotage it, he added.“It is ridiculous behavior. It singles them out, not Israel.”
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