Surveys Show ‘Sharp Differences’ between Jews in US and Israel

In January 2016, Mollie Shichman, a liberal Jew from Fairfax, Va., celebrated the Israeli government’s decision to create the first-ever government-funded pluralistic prayer space at the southern end of the Western Wall.

“To me, being egalitarian is extremely important,” Shichman, a college student, said of the proposed mixed-gender prayer space.

But excitement turned to disappointment when, in June 2017, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu backtracked on the plan due to pressure from ultra-Orthodox lawmakers.

In Israel this week (June 10-13) to attend the American Jewish Committee’s Global Forum, Shichman, who wears a kippah (yarmulke), a head covering traditionally worn by Jewish men, recalled being “accosted” by an Orthodox woman at the Western Wall for what the woman considered Shichman’s “immodest” clothing at the Western Wall plaza, a plaza behind the men’s and women’s prayer sections that isn’t used for prayer.

“I was at the far end of the plaza and took off my skirt” after visiting the Western Wall. “I had my shorts on underneath, but she called me a ‘goy,’” Shichman said of the Hebrew word for non-Jew, which the woman hurled as an insult.

“It was very hurtful to me. I’m just as much of a Jew as she is,” Shichman said.

While most Israeli Jews recognize the Jewishness of their American counterparts, the majority do not share the Americans’ dreams to make Israel a more religiously pluralistic country.

Lack of full equality for non-Orthodox Jews in Israel “over time may weaken American Jewish support for Israel,” said Harriet Schleifer, chair of AJC’s Board of Governors.

Two parallel AJC surveys released Sunday revealed “sharp differences of opinion” between Jews in Israel and the U.S., and between religious and liberal Jews in both countries.

“Significantly, for both communities, the main factor predicting how people will respond is how they identify religiously,” said AJC CEO David Harris in a statement.

“The more religiously observant they are on the denominational spectrum, their Jewish identity and attachment to Israel is stronger; skepticism about prospects for peace with the Palestinians higher; and support for religious pluralism in Israel weaker.”

Religious pluralism is a cornerstone for Jews in the U.S., where some 85 percent of the Jewish population defines itself as non-Orthodox or religiously unaffiliated, according to a 2016 survey by the Pew Research Center.

In Israel, where there is no separation between religion and state and where Orthodox Judaism is the only official, government-funded religious authority, 30 percent of Israeli Jews said that non-Orthodox Judaism “strengthens Jewish life in the diaspora but is irrelevant in Israel,” according to the AJC surveys.

A mere 26 percent of Israeli Jews thought the growth of the non-Orthodox streams in Israel can improve the country’s quality of life, compared with 43 percent of American Jews.

In another noteworthy gap, a strong majority of American Jews (73 percent) favored providing a space near the Western Wall for mixed-gender prayer, while 42 percent of Israeli Jews favored it and 48 percent opposed it.

A whopping 80 percent of American Jews vs. 49 percent of Israeli Jews want to end the ultra-Orthodox chief rabbinate’s monopoly on weddings, divorces and conversions.

Steven M. Cohen, a sociologist whose work focuses on the American Jewish community,  attributes the “widening gaps” between the world’s two largest Jewish communities to both ethnic and cultural differences.

“They come from very different cultures,” Cohen said. Whereas most American Jews are descended from Jews from Eastern Europe, at least half of Israeli Jews trace their roots directly to the Middle East and North Africa, among other places. They tend to be more religiously conservative.

Cohen said Israelis are highly innovative and pluralistic when it comes to politics, but not religion.

Israeli society has more than a dozen political parties that compete for parliamentary seats, but it continues to allow only the Orthodox establishment to decide on religious matters.

In the U.S., where religion and state are separate, the Reform, Conservative and Orthodox streams are on equal footing.

American Jews “place a much greater premium on universalism and softening group boundaries,” Cohen said. That’s one of the reasons many Jews feel comfortable marrying someone of a different faith.

The high rate of American Jewish intermarriage is a concern to many Orthodox Jews both in the U.S. and Israel.

In his speech before the AJC this week, Naftali Bennett, Israel’s minister of diaspora affairs, said the assimilation and potential “loss of millions” of American Jews into mainstream American society fill him with fear because eventually they might not consider themselves part of the Jewish people.

“If there’s one thing that keeps me up at night, it’s not Iran but the future of the Jews in America, and we have to fix this together,” said Bennett, the Orthodox son of American immigrants to Israel.

Jewish continuity and unity were central themes of the AJC’s closing ceremony, which took place in an archaeological park at the southern end of the Western Wall.

Standing next to an Israeli flag and an American flag, Dan Shapiro, an Orthodox Jew and former U.S. ambassador to Israel, cited Korach, the Torah portion Jews will read this Sabbath morning.

Recalling how Korach tried to wrest control of the Israelites from Moses as they made their way from Sinai to Canaan, Shapiro said the biblical villain tried to divide the people.

“Disunity can lead to tragedy,” Shapiro said, referring to the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E., an event the Jewish sages attributed to hatred within the Jewish community.

“Let us reinvigorate our relationship,” he said. “Let us embrace our diversity. Let us express our unconditional love for all our people.”

So Many Catastrophes, So Little Time: Nakba Day Is Over, Here Comes the Naksa

Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 5, 2018, will mark the 51st anniversary of the second most devastating catastrophic even in “Palestinian” Arab history, a date Jews and gentiles the world over mark as the beginning of the miraculous 1967 Six Day War. Naksa Day – in Arabic Yawm an-Naksa, meaning “day of the setback,” mourns Israel’s victory which, 19 years after the initial shock of seeing Jews defeating the local and the invading Arab armies, has destroyed the armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria, killing hundreds of thousands and tripling Israel’s size in less than a week.

The Naksa riots tradition began in 2011, with border demonstrations started on May 15 to commemorate Nakba Day—the catastrophe of 1948-49 that resulted from the Arabs’ 1947 refusal to divide the land and share it with a Jewish state. Instead, they vowed to throw the Jews to the sea and ended up losing a great deal more land than they would have had they agreed to the 1947 deal.

Several groups of Arab rioters attempted to breach Israel’s borders from the Palestinian Authority, Gaza, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, and Jordan. At least a dozen people were killed when they tried to breach Israel’s border from Syria.

Filled with patriotic fervor, on June 5, 2011, more protesters gathered on Israel’s border with Syria and, according to the Syrians, 23 of them were killed and 350 wounded by live fire from Israeli forces. Israel suggested these figures were exaggerated, citing 12 known injuries. IDF spokesman Gen. Yoav Mordechai accused Syria of creating a provocation at the border to distract from its violent crackdown on the Syrian uprising which had just begun. Of course, 600,000 dead later, 23 victims are often just another day at the Syrian civil war.

Israeli tanks speeding through the Sinai desert, June 1967

Al Jazeera maintains that “the fifth day of June 1967 is a day the Arabs are still viewing as a remarkable day in their modern history, a day where the armies of three Arab countries could not stand up to the Zionist occupation army, met a terrible defeat, and let Israel occupy the Gaza Strip and the West Bank and the rest of the Jerusalem, as well as the Syrian Golan Heights and Sinai, to become the dominant force in the region, deepening the notion of their having an invincible army.”

“The defeat of the Arabs in the June 1967 war, which was followed by the death of Gamal Abdel Nasser in 1970, constituted the decisive blow that ended nationalism,” said Fawaz Gerges, a professor of international relations. “The Arabs have lived for years under the dreams of cultural glory and strength, but their defeat them within a few hours at the hands of the emerging Jewish state led to the collapse of the foundation myth of Arab nationalism, embarrassing their guardian – Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser, which led to dispelling the promise of a bright future.”

“Today, fifty-one years after the setback, the Arabs are still unable to recover all that they lost in the 1967 war or to make radical changes in the political and military situation imposed by this war on the region,” Al Jazeera argues, adding, “But it is also clear that Israel was forced to leave the Gaza Strip in 2005, And is still suffering from the headache of the accumulation of the strength of the Palestinian resistance, which, although exhausted by the repeated Israeli attacks, Israel could not eliminate. Instead, the Palestinian resistance exhausted the occupation in various forms, so that we can say that Israel is no longer able to write the last chapter of the conflict on this earth.”

That is the Arab mindset then, 51 years after the Six Day War and 70 years after Israel’s independence. On Tuesday, when they no doubt will rush the Gaza fence again, in their minds they will be chipping away at the Jewish State’s ability to remain the decisive force in this arena.

We pray for the certainty and bravery of our soldiers and bless them that they will fire at the terrorists and take them down in what, in the end, will be yet another round on our way to prove to our Arab neighbors that they simply don’t stand a chance to defeat us.

God bless our soldiers.

Univ. of Oregon to sever ties with Israel?

anti-Israel flag BDS anti-Semitic

To the disappointment of Jewish students and Israel supporters, the student government at a northwest university last week passed a BDS proposal requesting the school divest itself of organizations with ties to Israel.

The University of Oregon joins Barnard College and George Washington University in passing its own boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) resolution. (See a related story.)

“In the last meeting of the school year, the resolution was introduced. And this is the one last thing the … student president wanted to pass before they left office,” Noa Raman of the Israel education group StandWithUs tells OneNewsNow.

Raman says more than 900 students signed petitions against Student Government President Amy Shenk’s proposal. Nonetheless, it passed by a vote of 12-6, with one abstention. But the school has already indicated that it will not act on the resolution.

“The Oregon Hillel executive director [Andy Gitelson] has been in communication with the administration, and they already stated that it’s looking like they won’t put it into action,” Raman reports.

She strongly believes a proposal will be introduced next fall to try and reverse this decision.

MIDDLE EAST 2 hours ago Gaza preschoolers seen performing mock execution of Israeli soldier

A shocking video recently surfaced that allegedly shows a play at a preschool in the Gaza Strip where children dressed up as commandos and performed a mock hostage-taking situation and execution of an Israeli soldier.

First reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), the video purportedly was recorded during a ceremony in May at the Al-Hoda preschool in the self-governing Palestinian territory.

In the play, a group of commandos – including a camouflaged sniper and soldiers in body armor – busted into an Israeli building on “Al-Quds Street.” They pulled out two “hostages” – one dressed in traditional ultra-Orthodox Jewish attire and the other as an Israeli Defense Force soldier – before mock-killing the IDF soldier.

The entire five-minute performance featured loud explosions and sound effects of gunfire. As a finale, the hostage was whisked off stage, while one of the commandos displayed a sign in Arabic and Hebrew that read, “Israel has fallen.”

The play was followed by a demonstration of military formations by the children, while a speech by the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat played in the background.

Fox News was unable to confirm the veracity of the content, but a spokesperson for MEMRI said they found the footage while monitoring the Internet for Palestinian videos.

“Unfortunately we have seen many videos like this from the region over the years,” Steven Stalinsky, MEMRI’s executive director, told Fox News in an email.

MEMRI asserts that the Al-Hoda school is affiliated with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group and has held similar performances in the past.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, “The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) is an Islamic, Palestinian nationalist organization that violently opposes the existence of Israel.” The group was designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department in 1997 and is believed to almost entirely funded Iran.

Attempts to contact Al-Hoda by Fox News were unsuccessful.

The video comes at a time of heightened tension between Israelis and Palestinians.

Clashes at the Israel-Gaza border left dozens of Palestinians dead and hundreds wounded on the same day that the Trump administration officially opened the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem last month.

Earlier on Sunday, the Israeli military struck Hamas militant sites in Gaza early Sunday in response to the resumption of rocket fire toward Israel, which threatened to unravel an informal cease-fire that had held since a flare-up of violence last week.

Israel has also been battling fires triggered by kites rigged with incendiary devices, or attached to burning rags, launched by Palestinians in Gaza that have damaged forests and burned southern agricultural fields.

Palestinian protesters run for cover from teargas fired by Israeli troops during a protest at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, Friday, April 6, 2018. (AP Photo/ Khalil Hamra)

 (Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

The military said it hit 15 Hamas targets, including military compounds, munition factories and naval forces. The strikes came after militants broke days of calm along the volatile frontier by firing projectiles toward Israeli communities.

Last week, Gaza militants fired dozens of mortar shells and Israel struck back, in the most violent exchange between the two sides since the 2014 war.

Despite the flare-up in violence, neither Israel nor Hamas appear interested in a full-blown conflict, and both exercised restraint. Militants in Gaza did not fire long-range rockets at Israel’s major cities, as they did in 2014, and Israeli airstrikes were focused on unmanned military targets.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since the Islamic militant group seized control of Gaza in 2007.

Detained for Hours by the Police as Men Spit on the Name of Jesus: My Day in Jerusalem

I’m writing from the quiet of my hotel room in Jerusalem at midnight, but today was anything but quiet. (If you’re impatient and want to jump ahead, watch this short video now. You’ll see things got pretty intense.)

I was with a small team in a mixed area in Jerusalem, getting video footage to use on Christian TV. Some of the people were very religious, others more secular. But my goal was to interview the more religious Jews and, if they were interested in talking more, connect them with some local believers.

Soon enough, some of the religious Jews started yelling “Missionaries!”, at which point we shut down the interviews, not wanting to create a scene.

But as we tried to leave quietly, one agitator started following me and yelling “Missionary!” in the crowded marketplace. He was then joined by other ultra-Orthodox Jews, who started to surround me and challenge me.

At that point, I decided that this was the perfect opportunity to share my faith boldly and clearly. I already had someone offering free (albeit loud and very negative) publicity. I told them that, yes, of course, I believe in Yeshua (Jesus), and yes, I’m still a Jew.

I turned to the onlookers, many of whom were not religious, asking them, “Is this illegal? Is it illegal for me to preach openly here? Is it illegal for a Jew to believe in Jesus?”

Of course, they told me it was not illegal. One of them even asked me, “Are you for Trump?”

When I said yes, he sang my praises to the onlooking crowd. Seriously. (I’ll talk about this more in another article, but you’d be amazed to hear how much President Trump is respected by many Israelis.)

As for the ultra-Orthodox Jews who surrounded me and yelled at me, you have to see things from their perspective. What they read about Jesus in their own literature tells them he was a deceiver who did miracles by magical power. They believe he led people away from the one true God. And they associate him directly with the Holocaust and with Jewish suffering throughout history.

That’s why one of them (captured on the video) shouted out in Hebrew, “We don’t believe in Yeshua,” then spat on the ground.

As for me, in their eyes, I was even worse. I was not only a missionary but also a fraud, since I still claimed to be a Jew. How my heart goes out to these men!

Eventually, after the main agitator kept harassing us, I decided the last thing he would do was drive us away. So as long as he yelled, I stayed and shared my faith.

But he had called the police, claiming (falsely) I was breaking the law. And then, when he pushed his phone right up to my face (literally) and I pushed it away, he started shouting that I attacked him. Seriously!

Finally, two policewomen arrived and because of his accusations, we had to go to the local police station. The whole process took about four-five hours, with the great majority of the time spent sitting without a phone, doing nothing. (Of course, I was praying silently and thanking God for this special day, also praying for my accuser, who sat across from me the whole time.)

The big problem for me was that I’m fluent in biblical Hebrew but weak in modern Hebrew, so I missed a lot of what my accuser was saying and was concerned I couldn’t explain things clearly to the police officers.

Finally, an interrogator arrived, spending about 20-30 minutes with my accuser, then interviewing me. By this time, we had this same video up on YouTube, so he could get a feel for what was happening. And he fully understood I had done nothing wrong or illegal.

Then he asked me, “Are you a missionary?”

In the Jewish world, especially Israel, this has very bad connotations. But since I had made clear to him that I was a public, unashamed believer in Jesus and that I share my faith with my people, I answered in the affirmative.

To my delightful surprise he said, “That’s OK. Missionaries are good!”

A few minutes later, with a smile and without any paperwork to take with me, he told me I could go.

Now it had been hours since my phone was taken from me, so Nancy and my family and ministry team and friends had no idea where I was or the details of what happened. But, when I walked out of the police station, before I could call home and tell the full story, I was greeted by three more ultra-Orthodox Jews. One shouted “missionary” and took my picture with his cell phone. I greeted him with a big smile.

Another said with a smile, “So Michael Brown is now violent?” (It looks like he knew me already!) I laughed with him, realizing that he knew the story was phony.

Then he said to me, “You should bring this message to Bethlehem.”

I said, “I’m going there this weekend to speak at a controversial, anti-Zionist conference as a friend of Israel!”

He responded, “I know!”

And then, asking if he could revert to Hebrew (since we were speaking in English), he said, “For this one time, I wish you success!”

What a day in Jerusalem!

Gaza militants strike Israel, drawing Israeli retaliation

Palestinian militants bombarded southern Israel with dozens of rockets and mortar shells Tuesday, while Israeli warplanes struck targets throughout the Gaza Strip in the largest flare-up of violence between the sides since a 2014 war.

The Israeli military said most of the projectiles were intercepted, but three soldiers were wounded, raising the chances of further Israeli retaliation. One mortar shell landed near a kindergarten shortly before it opened.

The sudden burst of violence, which stretched past midnight with no signs of slowing, follows weeks of mass Palestinian protests along the Gaza border with Israel. Over 110 Palestinians, many of them unarmed protesters, have been killed by Israeli fire in that time. Israel says it holds Gaza’s Hamas rulers responsible for the bloodshed.

“Israel will exact a heavy price from those who seek to harm it, and we see Hamas as responsible for preventing such attacks,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.

Israel and Hamas are bitter enemies and have fought three wars since the Islamic group seized control of Gaza in 2007.

The last war in 2014 was especially devastating, with over 2,000 Palestinians killed, including hundreds of civilians, and widespread damage inflicted on Gaza’s infrastructure in 50 days of fighting. Seventy-two people were killed on the Israeli side.

Tuesday’s violence bore a striking resemblance to the run-up to past wars. In the early morning, Palestinian militants fired over two dozen mortar rounds into southern Israel, including the shell that landed near the kindergarten.

The Israeli military confirmed over 60 airstrikes throughout Gaza, including an unfinished tunnel near the southern city of Rafah that crossed under the border into Egypt and from there into Israeli territory. It said other targets included “sheds of drones,” a rocket manufacturing workshop, naval weaponry, military and training facilities and a munitions manufacturing site. No Palestinian casualties were reported.

Palestinian militants continued to fire additional barrages toward southern Israel, setting off air raid sirens in the area throughout the night.

Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis, the chief military spokesman, threatened tougher action and said it was up to Hamas to stop the situation from escalating.

“These strikes will continue to intensify as long as necessary if this fire continues,” he told reporters outside Israeli military headquarters.

Hamas and the smaller Islamic Jihad militant issued a joint statement Tuesday, claiming shared responsibility for firing rockets and projectiles against Israeli communities near Gaza.

They said Israel “began this round of escalation” by targeting their installations in the past two days, killing four militants. It was the first time the armed wing of Hamas has claimed responsibility for rocket attacks out of Gaza since the 2014 war.

An Islamic Jihad spokesman, Daoud Shehab, claimed that Egypt had brokered a cease-fire deal to go into effect at midnight. But more than an hour after the deadline, rocket fire and Israeli airstrikes were continuing. Shehab said some militants rejected the cease-fire and were continuing to fire rockets. There was no Israeli comment on the purported cease-fire plan.

Hamas has been severely weakened by the three wars with Israel, as well as a stifling Israeli-Egyptian blockade that has brought the local economy to a standstill.

Hamas initially billed the weekly border protests as a call to break through the fence and return to homes that were lost 70 years ago during the war surrounding Israel’s establishment.

But the protests appear to be fueled primarily by a desire to ease the blockade. Gaza’s unemployment rate is edging toward 50 percent, and the territory suffers from chronic power outages.

With limited options at its disposal, and a failure so far of the protests to significantly ease the blockade, Hamas appears to be gambling that limited rocket fire might somehow shake up the situation.

Ismail Radwan, a Hamas official, said the “resistance is capable of hurting the occupation and it proved this today by responding to its crimes.”

Israel says the blockade is needed to prevent Hamas from building up its military capabilities.

Also Tuesday, two fishing boats carrying students and medical patients set sail from Gaza City’s port, aiming to reach Cyprus and break the Israeli blockade, which has restricted most activity along the coast. Hamas acknowledged it was mostly a symbolic act.

One of the boats quickly turned around, while the Israeli navy intercepted the second vessel after it ventured beyond a six-mile (10-kilometer) limit imposed by Israel.

The Israeli military said the boat was intercepted without incident, was taken to the Israeli port of Ashdod and the 17 people aboard would be sent back to Gaza.

In southern Israel, angry residents complained about the renewed rocket fire.

Adva Klein of Kibbutz Kfar Aza said she only got about two hours of sleep because of the frequent incoming fire and the warning sirens. Other residents reported machine- gun fire from Gaza.

“It’s been a really scary morning,” said Adele Raemer of Kibbutz Nirim.

Regional councils near the Gaza border instructed residents to stay close to bomb shelters.

The high Palestinian death toll in the border protests has drawn strong international criticism of Israel, with rights groups saying Israel’s use of live fire is illegal because in many cases it has struck unarmed protesters who did not pose an imminent threat to Israeli soldiers.

But on Tuesday, the Palestinians came under criticism.

The United States condemned the attacks out of Gaza and called for an urgent meeting of the U.N. Security Council. U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said the Security Council “should be outraged and respond.”

The European Union’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, called for an immediate halt to the rocket and mortar fire.

“Indiscriminate attacks against civilians are completely unacceptable under any circumstances,” she said.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry said it had instructed embassies around the world to seek similar condemnations of the Palestinian fire.

Israel has rejected the criticism of its response to the protests, saying it is defending its border and nearby communities. It accuses Hamas of trying to carry out attacks under the cover of protests and using civilian demonstrators as human shields.

Hamas has vowed to continue the border rallies.

Right on cue, the world condemns Israel

Is it any coincidence that all this is taking place at the same time we relocated our embassy to Jerusalem? Things are falling into place just as scripted by Hamas.

Here are the fake Media reports: Israel is slaughtering unarmed men! Israel is killing women and children! Israel is butchering babies! It’s time for the world to condemn this genocidal nation!

Things are falling into place just as scripted by Hamas. The terrorist organization recruits and sends its young men on suicide missions. Israel responds with the expected force. The media reports the events along anti-Israel lines. Then the nations of the world rise up to condemn evil Israel.

I previously cited Aaron Klein and Melanie Phillips, both of whom pointed out how the secular media plays right into Hamas’s hands. Since then, David Friedman, our ambassador to Israel, also weighed in, dubbing the protests and the ensuing casualties “a public relations event.”

He said, “If I could give a word of advice to the media, if they purport to care so much about the Palestinian cause: this coverage of Palestinians running to the fence, burning tires — it’s the fuel or the lubricant for further malign behavior.”

He added, “there’s a reason why Hamas sends impressionable kids to the front, telling them that the border is safe to cross. They want them to be killed or injured, to make the front page of the paper.”

Palestinian ambassador blasting IsraelThat is the satanic and cynical strategy of Hamas.

Alan Dershowitz made similar comments, claiming that when the media reports in such “a biased manner,” that “incentivizes and encourages Hamas.” He said:

“You use children and women, you deliberately put them on the front lines, you make it impossible for Israel to defend itself without occasionally killing a woman or a child or an elderly person. And every time Israel accidentally kills somebody like that, Israelis grieve. Israel loses. Hamas cheers and celebrates because that’s exactly what they want. They want the media to show the body count. They want the media to show the dead baby, even though Israel tried everything in its power to avoid civilian casualties.”

It doesn’t matter that Hamas has admitted that more than 80 percent of those killed on Monday were Hamas members. (See here also)

It doesn’t matter that the dead baby (seen with grieving mother), did not die at the hands of the IDF. (And why on earth would you bring an infant anywhere near the front lines of an active shooting site?)

It doesn’t matter that, “A Hamas leader said in an interview that the terror group was ‘deceiving the public’ when it spoke of ‘peaceful resistance.'”

All that matters is that Israel is evil and Israel is monstrous and Israel is genocidal.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim is now calling on the Islamic world to unite against Israel. “The Islamic world should move as one, with one voice, against this massacre,” he said.

And here in the West, celebrities are condemning evil Israel once again.

According to Chelsea Handler (on Tuesday): “Nikki Haley is on tv talking about Hamas being responsible for the Palestinians protesting yesterday. These people had no weapons. They had tires to burn. There was a dead baby. While Netanyahu celebrates.”

Bette Midler tweeted (specifically targeting President Trump): “Fifty-two people die in protest over moving American Embassy to Jerusalem. Thanks, a–hole! Your uninformed and demented actions have consequences! Don’t you get it? Those people had families too!”

Michael Ian Black was more succinct: “Two *thousand* wounded. This is a massacre.”

Did I say that things were playing out just as Hamas scripted?

Again, as I emphasized in my last column, I grieve over this loss of life as well, regardless of who is ultimately responsible for it. And I do not claim that Israel is perfect in all her actions.

But this is a story we’ve read before. We know the plot. We know the players. We know how the story ends: Israel is a genocidal monster that must be stopped!

Is it any coincidence that all this is taking place at the same time we relocated our embassy to Jerusalem? Is it any coincidence that Zechariah, writing more than 2,500 years ago, described how all the nations would unite to attack Jerusalem? (See Zechariah 12 and 14. This could speak of all surrounding nations, of a coalition of nations worldwide, or literally, of every nation.)

Jerusalem Day Riots Begin on Temple Mount

Riots on Temple Mt. May 13, 2018

 Jerusalem Liberation Day has begun, as Waqf members are claiming that the Jews who visited the Temple Mount Sunday morning began to pray. They tried to prevent them, police intervened, according to a tweet by Yaara Shapira of Channel 1 News.

Hundreds of Jews are already waiting at the entrance to the Temple Mount, so far, as of 7:20 AM, more than 150 have entered [Click here for the latest numbers]. According to TPS, about 10 Jewish visitors have been removed from the mountain after failing to pass police inspection, apparently because of the combination of long side curls and large skullcaps. One Jew was detained by police on suspicion of bowing to the Creator of the Universe.

As Arabs began shouting at the Jewish groups, the Jews began to sing holiday songs in response. In response, an Arab riot began against the Jews, which was suppressed by the police. At least one Arab was detained.

Israel Retaliates after 30-Rocket Barrage with 4-Hour Attack on Dozens of Iranian Military Targets in Syria

Extensive IDF attack against Iranian targets overnight Thursday

Retaliating against the Iranian attack on Israel from Syrian territory, the IDF carried out one of its biggest air operations in the last few decades, attacking dozens of military targets belonging to the Iranian Al Quds Force in Syria overnight Thursday, the IDF Spokesperson reported.

As part of the large-scale attack, the IDF attacked:

  • Iranian intelligence sites operated by the Al Qods Force;
  • logistics commands of the Al Qods Force;
  • a military compound and logistics complex of the Al Qods Force in Kiswah;
  • an Iranian military camp north of Damascus;
  • weapons storage sites belonging to the Al Qods Force at Damascus International Airport;
  • intelligence systems and installations associated with theAl Qods Force;
  • and an observation post, military posts and weapons in the buffer zone in the Syrian Golan heights.

In addition, the Iranian launcher from which Iranian missiles were fired at Israel was destroyed overnight.

Israel’s Iron Dome system intercepted and shot down four of those 30 missiles, the rest landed in Syrian territory.

The Israeli Air Force attacked Syrian air defense batteries, which fired despite an Israeli warning. In retaliation, the IDF attacked a number of interception systems (SA5, SA2, SA22, SA17) belonging to the Syrian army.

All of Israel’s planes returned to base safely.

The IDF made it a point to say that the attack last night was done by Iranian Al Quds forces, and not by proxies.

Overnight, IDF fighter jets struck dozens of military targets belonging to the Iranian Quds forces in Syrian territory pic.twitter.com/LwBJTMkxYR

“The IDF will continue to act decisively against the Iranian military efforts in Syria, views the Syrian regime as being responsible for whatever is happening in its territory, and warns it against acting against Israeli forces,” the report concluded, noting that “the IDF is highly prepared for a variety of scenarios and will continue to act as necessary for the safety of Israeli citizens.”

The IDF pointed out that not a single Iranian rocket managed to hit Israel. Last night Syrian TV falsely claimed that the Iranian missiles hit a dozen IDF bases, and listed the sites they claimed to have hit.

In a response to Hezbollah’s threats that they would hit harder and deeper into Israel if Israel responds to the first strike, first of all, Israel hit back harder and deeper against Iranian forces in Syria, and then sent out a message that if there any more attacks from Syria, the IDF will hit back even harder.

Contrary to the rumors, Russian forces did not get involved in any way in defending Syria or Iran.

IDF Permitted to Eliminate Kite Terrorists

Firebomb kite decorated with a swastika by Gaza terrorists

In an interview on Radio Darom, Minister of Internal Security Gilad Erdan (Likud) said the IDF has received new open fire instructions, and Gazans flying Molotov kites will be treated as terrorists in every way, and the IDF is permitted to eliminate the kite flyers, including by drone-based targeted assassination.

Hundred of acres of Israeli farmland and forest have been burned down in the past few weeks by the Gazans.

Israeli Farmers along the Gaza border have decided to harvest their wheat early this year, due to fear that their fields will be burned down by the Gaza terrorists, if they wait to harvest them at the proper time.