Category Archive: Israel

Jul 10

MASSIVE oil discoveries in Israel is TEN TIMES larger than world average – could sustain the Jewish State for decades

Jun 23, 2017 by admin in ISRAEL

A big oil deposit has been found in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, with enough reserves to last Israel for decades, according to the country’s media.
The Israeli presence in the Golan Heights is in dispute. The region is internationally recognized Syrian territory that has been occupied by Israel since the 1967 Six-Day War between Israel and several Arab states. UN Resolution 242 (1967) demands the withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from the territories occupied in the conflict. Israel disagrees with the wording of the resolution, saying the territories are disputable.

Reportedly, the potential production may reach billions of barrels, while Israel consumes 270,000 barrels per day. Israel currently imports up to three quarters of its oil from the semi-autonomous Kurdish region in Iraq, the Financial Times reported in August.

“We are talking about a strata which is 350 meters thick and what is important is the thickness and the porosity. On average in the world strata are 20-30 meters thick, so this is ten times as large as that, so we are talking about significant quantities. The important thing is to know the oil is in the rock and that’s what we now know,” Israel business website Globes quotes Yuval Bartov, chief geologist of Afek Oil and Gas as saying. Afek is a subsidiary of the America’s Genie Energy

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8625

Jun 28

Netanyahu warns Iran over Syria involvement after Golan exchange

ByHerb Keinon

June 25, 2017 12:03

Day after spillover from Syria prompts retaliatory IDF strike, PM stresses that Israel will not allow the Islamic Republic to establish a permanent presences on the Golan.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Iran on Sunday  that Israel “views gravely” its attempts to set up a military presence in Syria and to arm Hezbollah with advanced weaponry via Syria and Lebanon.

His comments at the weekly cabinet meeting came a day after the IDF responded to mortar fire from Syria by attacking Syrian army targets across the border.

“Our policy is clear,” he said. “We will not accept any kind of ‘drizzle, not of mortars, rockets, or spillover fire [from the Syrian Civil War]. We respond with force to every attack on our territory and against our citizens.”

Israel strikes Syrian targets in response to earlier cross-border fire June 24, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson’s Unit)

Israel strikes Syrian targets in response to earlier cross-border fire, June 24, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson’s Unit)

Netanyahu has said repeatedly that Israel will act to prevent game-changing weapons from reaching Hezbollah through Syria, to prevent the establishment of a permanent Iranian military presence on its border, and to keep rockets from being fired from Syria into Israel.

Turning to diplomatic issues, he said that in advance of the visit next week of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the cabinet will approve a number of measures aimed at enhancing the relationship between the two countries.

“This is a historic visit,” he said. “For 70 years no Indian prime minister has visited the country, and this is another expression of the military, economic and diplomatic strength of Israel,” he said, calling Modi’s visit “a very significant step towards strengthening the ties between the two countries.”

Netanyahu said that relations with India, a country of 1.25 billion people and one of the world’s largest economies, is on a steady increase.

The cabinet decisions regarding ties with India that will pass include increasing exports, deepening cooperation in the fields of water and agriculture, establishing a joint fund for research and innovation, and increasing Indian tourism to Israel The steadily growing ties with India, he said, “is another expression of Israel’s international position which has gotten stronger over the last number of years, as we have strengthened Israel.”

The prime minister also mentioned the ongoing crisis at in the pediatric hemato-oncology department at Hadassah-University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem, saying it has gone on for “too long.”

Before the issue goes to the High Court of Justice on Wednesday, Netanyahu called on the sides of the dispute to return the situation to what it was in March before six physicians who are experts in blood cancer resigned to protest the management of the Hadassah Medical Organization by its director-general, Prof. Zeev Rotstein. Netanyahu said the sides should then take the next six to 12 months to resolve the issue.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8614

Jun 28

Construction to Begin on Israel-Lebanon Border Wall

By Tazpit Press Service June 26, 2017 , 1:30 pm

“Then said I unto them: ‘Ye see the evil case that we are in, how Yerushalayim lieth waste, and the gates thereof are burned with fire; come and let us build up the wall of Yerushalayim, that we be no more a reproach.’” Nehemiah 2:17 (The Israel Bible™)

Israeli media reported Sunday that the IDF is expected to start construction of a wall on the Israeli-Lebanese border within the next month, Israeli media reports on Sunday. The initial stage of the wall will be built from Rosh Hanikra, at the northwest corner of Israel, running around 12 kilometers to Hanita to the east, and from Misgav Am to Metula.

The wall, the tender for which was published over a year ago, comes in response to fears that Hezbollah will stage a ground invasion of northern Israel and attempt to take over Israeli communities along the border. The barrier is expected to eventually run the entire 80 kilometers from Rosh Hanikra on the coast to Har Dov and the Hermon Mountain range in the east.

The report quoted security sources as saying Hezbollah may try to disrupt the works by organizing demonstrations on the grounds that the barrier does not comply with the international border, known as the Blue Line, and could even respond with sniper fire. They added, however, that Hezbollah is not interested in an all-out conflict.

Israel and Hezbollah fought a 34-day war in the summer of 2006, but the Lebanese border has remained quiet ever since. But Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot recently called Hezbollah Israel’s “top priority” at an event marking the 11th anniversary of the war, although the Israeli intelligence community believes the northern border will remain quiet as long as Hezbollah remains embroiled in the Syrian civil war.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said in a speech last week that the next war with Israel could see “hundreds of thousands of fighters from all over the Arab and Islamic world”  taking part.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8612

Jun 26

Turkish Funding in Jerusalem Could Be “Explosive”

By Andrew Friedman June 23, 2017 , 7:00 am

“Who devise evil things in their heart; every day do they stir up wars.” Psalms 140:3 (The Israel Bible™)

Turkey’s interest in Jerusalem could have the potential to spark a diplomatic explosion with the government of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, former Foreign Ministry director general Alon Liel told Tazpit Press Service Wednesday on the heels of a report published by the Israel Hayom free sheet outlining 63 Turkish-funded projects in the city’s Arab sector, including funding for Palestinians who are paid to harass Jews on the Temple Mount (known in Arabic as Murabitoun).

The report said that a government subsidiary, the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), has given millions of dollars to Islamic projects in the capital. TIKA president is headed by Dr. Serdar Cam, a close ally of Erdoğan and his former bureau chief in the Turkish Parliament. Last month, Erdoğan leveled a furious attack at Israel for retaining control of Jerusalem, that the prime minister called a “humilation to the Muslim world.”

The paper said that TIKA’s projects include restoring the archive of Muslim Ottoman documents on the Temple Mount, purchasing a large water tank for worshippers on the Mount, financing a salvage excavation on Sharsheret (chain) Street in the Old City, rebuilding the Muslim cemetery at the foot of the eastern wall of the Temple Mount and in several religious and community projects throughout East Jerusalem.

In addition, Turkey also replaced the crescent atop the Dome of the Rock several years ago.

“Turkey has always been interested in Jerusalem and involved in one way or another in what’s going on there. That’s been true for decades, not just in Erdoğan’s time,” Liel, a former chargé d’affaires to Ankara, said. “Even when Turkey was a largely secular society, the Jerusalem issue was enormous. Add into the mix the Islamization of recent years, and the fact that Turkey is in a much better economic place than it was 15 years ago when Erdoğan came to power, and the issue suddenly looks very explosive,” Liel said.

Despite the potential for a diplomatic “explosion,” Liel said that Israel does not place the importance on relations with Turkey that it once did.

“Israel has enough friends in the region today that Jerusalem doesn’t really care too much if they upset Turkey,” he said. “We have developed strong enough relationships around the region that we don’t have to rely on strong ties to Anakara anymore.”

Still, Liel cautioned against provoking Erdogan by moving to curtail Turkish-funded activities in the capital.

“In addition to the Jerusalem issue, the Turks are very, very angry that Israel has not fully implemented the deal to normalize ties, especially in the gas sector. The issue is so sensitive, if you add something else into the mix right now, Erdoğan could well explode. I don’t really see that Israel has an interest in moving against the Turks in Jerusalem,” he said

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8609

Jun 12

Top Israeli intel official: Threat of Iran’s Mideast dominance ‘immediate’

ByAnna Ahronheim

June 7, 2017 05:32

Concern among officials about Iran’s influence – and what is believed to be its goal of forming a land corridor from Tehran to Beirut – has grown.

The threat from Tehran’s growing strength in Syria should be the number one focus of concern for Israel and the West, a top Israeli intelligence official said on Tuesday.

“The Iranian nuclear issue will of course always be a very high priority,” Intelligence Ministry director-general Chagai Tzuriel told The Jerusalem Post on the sidelines of the 8th annual Israel Defense Exhibition in Tel Aviv. “But the negative potential built-in in the nuclear agreement will become more threatening as time goes by, while the threat of Iranian dominance in the region is immediate.”

Developments in Syria have created “a strong imbalance in the region to Iran’s benefit,” Tzuriel told the global gathering of military and defense professionals. “Iran’s strengthening in Syria is an issue that must be addressed right now.”

Concern among officials about Iran’s influence – and what is believed to be its goal of forming a land corridor from Tehran to Beirut – has grown.

This is particularly true since Iranian-backed Iraqi militias recently reached strategically situated villages on the Syria-Iraq border, which according to Tzuriel is today’s location of greatest urgency.

“There is no doubt that Iran has a strategic plan to make a continuous land bridge,” Tzuriel told the Post, and if Tehran succeeds in creating a continuous land bridge from Iran to Lebanon, he said, “it would be a strategic game-changer.”

Maj.-Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a senior figure in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was photographed on a scouting tour of the northwest Iraqi countryside near the Syrian border.

Tzuriel, who served in the Mossad for 28 years, said the presence of Soleimani, a top player in external Iranian operations as well as internal politics, was “a significant” message from Iran.

“Having Iran on the Iraq-Syria border is a new chapter,” he said. “We may be entering the final stretch of Islamic State militancy in those countries… but we must then ask ourselves what are we paving the way for? What is the next threat? A mutation of global jihad or Iran, or both?” Tzuriel said the West and Israel must prevent the threat posed by Iran from maturing.

“If Iran and Hezbollah manage to base themselves in Syria, it would be a permanent source of instability in the entire region. Even Moscow understands this,” he explained.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8584

Jun 05

Trump Officially Vetoes Embassy Move, Disappointing Millions of Pro-Israel Voters

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz June 2, 2017 , 10:51 am

“Blessed be Hashem out of Tzion, who dwelleth at Yerushalayim. Hallelujah.” Psalms 135:21 (The Israel Bible™)

In direct contradiction of a key campaign promise, US President Donald Trump signed a waiver on Wednesday, delaying the enactment of the Jerusalem Embassy Act for another six months. The move is a blow to millions of pro-Israel voters who were instrumental in helping Trump win the presidential election.

The Jerusalem Embassy Act, passed in Congress in 1995, authorized moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but allowed for a presidential veto lasting six-months based on security concerns. Since the law was passed, every president has signed the veto preventing the move, the last time being in December by former President Barack Obama in his final days in office. The veto expired on Wednesday at midnight.

The White House released a statement explaining the decision was to enhance the possibility of successful negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel, and the president has full intention of ordering the embassy move sometime in the future.

While President Donald J. Trump signed the waiver under the Jerusalem Embassy Act and delayed moving the US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, no one should consider this step to be in any way a retreat from the President’s strong support for Israel and for the United States-Israel alliance.

President Trump made this decision to maximize the chances of successfully negotiating a deal between Israel and the Palestinians, fulfilling his solemn obligation to defend America’s national security interests. But, as he has repeatedly stated his intention to move the embassy, the question is not if that move happens, but only when.

Trump garnered strong support among pro-Israel Jews and Christians during his run for the presidency by promising to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, most notably during his speech at the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual policy conference in March 2016, when he declared that if elected, “We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, Jerusalem.”

As rumors increased that the administration was distancing itself from the promise in recent months, evangelical and Jewish leaders stepped up to urge Trump to fulfill his promise.

“President Trump’s promise to move the embassy to Jerusalem was of critical importance to millions of Christian Zionists who ultimately supported his bid for the White House. They will be watching what the president does very closely,” Pastor John Hagee, founder of influential Christian Zionist group Christians United for Israel, said last week.

Nathan Diament, executive director for public policy for the Orthodox Union, echoed the sentiment on behalf of Trump’s Jewish supporters. “A majority of American Orthodox Jews voted for Mr. Trump because of the expectation that he would be a more supportive president for Israel,” he said

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8571

Jun 05

Turkey Eclipsing Jordan in Arab Claims to Old City, Temple Mount

By JNI Media May 30, 2017 , 9:00 am

“And they deceive every one his neighbour, and truth they speak not; they have taught their tongue to speak lies, they weary themselves to commit iniquity.” Jeremiah 9:4 (The Israel Bible™)

The Jerusalem municipality’s eastern Jerusalem experts have revealed in recent days that Turkey has been competing with Jordan over influence among Arab residents as well as over control of the Temple Mount, Hashiloach—an Israeli journal for thought and policy, created by the Tikvah Fund—reported last week.

The city’s experts, David Koren and Ben Avrahami, also revealed that Turkey has begun pouring millions of dollars into non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in eastern Jerusalem, in order to strengthen Ankara’s status among the Arab residents, at the expense of Jordan and Israel.

The Arab population of Jerusalem numbers approximately 320,000, with another 50,000 residents of Judea and Samaria who are staying in the city illegally or through family reunification. Jerusalem Arabs constitute about 37 percent of the city’s population and about 20 percent of the Arab population in Israel. In fact, Jerusalem is the city with the highest Arab population density between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea (excluding Gaza). Ramallah has 280,000 residents, and Nazareth, the largest Arab city in Israel, has only 75,000.

The vast majority of Jerusalem’s Arabs are Muslim – the Christian population is estimated at between 10 and 15 thousand.

“The growing involvement of the Erdogan regime, which is now the main patron of the Muslim Brotherhood worldwide, shows that the Turkish actions in Jerusalem are part of a wider process of creating regional Turkish hegemony at the expense of other players,” wrote the Jerusalem mayor’s advisers on the eastern part of the city, noting that “the biggest loser from the increased Turkish presence is Jordan, which for many years had enjoyed the status of Custodian of the Holy Places and the protector of the residents of eastern Jerusalem.

“The greatest threat to the Hashemite Kingdom on the Temple Mount comes from Turkey.”

Earlier this month, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed Israel for “massacring the Palestinians,” calling on the Turks to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque and dubbing Israel’s control of Jerusalem “an insult.” He also attacked President Donald Trump’s plans to move the US embassy to Jerusalem, and declared that “all Muslims must defend Jerusalem.”

The experts added that in May 2015, Muslim worshipers expelled the chief Jordanian Kadi from the Temple Mount, while at the same time receiving with great honor the Turkish minister of religious affairs. “In recent years, the Turks have poured considerable sums of money into the Temple Mount for a number of activities: Koran reading groups, transporting worshipers to and from the mosque, Ramadan meals, renovations, and cleaning. As a rule, whether deliberately or not, Muslim groups on the Temple Mount are acting in favor of Turkey and to the detriment of Jordan.

“In their view, replacing the Jordanian presence with Turkish presence would be a positive and welcome step,” Koren and Avrahami wrote.

“Erdogan’s Turkey now enjoys unprecedented popularity among the residents of eastern Jerusalem,” the report continued. “Turkish flags are often seen hanging from rooftops in the eastern part of the city and even on the Temple Mount, and Turkish culture is being revived, which is reflected in Turkish language courses, Turkish music and Turkish cuisine.”

One hundred years after the last Turkish soldier was chased out of Jerusalem by the invading British Empire, “Turkey’s public support for the Palestinian cause and the Al-Aqsa conflict, and their channeling of millions of dollars into eastern Jerusalem, bear many fruits in the form of sympathy and support,” the experts concluded, adding that the Turks’ “involvement is made possible by their cooperation with Muslim Brotherhood elements in the city, who are often being used as their allies and collaborators.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8569

May 30

Netanyahu Vows Temple Mount Will Remain Under Israeli Sovereignty Forever

By JNS May 25, 2017 , 9:30 am

“Thus saith Hashem: I return unto Tzion and will dwell in the midst of Yerushalayim; and Yerushalayim shall be called the city of truth; and the mountain of Hashem of hosts the holy mountain.” Zechariah 8:3 (The Israel Bible™)

An aerial view of the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. (Andrew Shiva via Wikimedia Commons)

During a celebration for Jerusalem Day at the Israeli Knesset, marking the 50th anniversary of the capital city’s reunification, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed the Temple Mount and Western Wall would remain under Israeli sovereignty.

“The black cloud over Jerusalem disappeared 50 years ago,” said Netanyahu. “The Temple Mount and Western Wall will stay under Israeli sovereignty forever.”

The prime minister lauded the freedom of religion practiced in Jerusalem “only under our (Israeli) control.” From 1948-1967, Jordan controlled eastern Jerusalem.

Netanyahu also linked Jerusalem Day with this week’s terror attack in Manchester, U.K., which killed 22 people and injured as many as 59 during an Ariana Grande concert.

“Had the victims of the Manchester attack been killed in Jerusalem, the terrorist’s family would have received a big stipend from the Palestinian Authority,” he said, referring to an ongoing Palestinian Authority practice that Israel and the U.S. have sought to end.

“You cannot say that the despicable act in Manchester is forbidden, but that here in Jerusalem it is allowed,” said Netanyahu.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8565

May 30

At City of David, “Watching Jerusalem Rise From the Ashes”

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz May 23, 2017 , 2:30 pm

“And [David] made him houses in the city of David; and he prepared a place for the ark of God, and pitched for it a tent.” I Chronicles 15:1 (The Israel Bible™)

City of David (Photo: Deror Avi/ Wiki Commons)

As the ancient City of David is uncovered by archaeologists, excavations are revealing not only the past but the city’s central role in prophecy. One woman, tasked with getting the word out about the site, will be a panelist at the Breaking Israel News Prophecy in the News Conference in order to  help the Biblical city reemerge and take its central role in Israel today.

Three years ago, AnaRina Heymann, Outreach Coordinator for the City of David, initiated the Jerusalem Watch project with the goal of creating awareness for ancient Biblical Jerusalem. As part of her job, she educates people about the ongoing archaeology uncovering the city’s Biblical past.

“The City of David is the place where it all began,” Heymann told Breaking Israel News. “Excavations at the City of David offer unequivocal proof of the Jewish heritage and over 3,000 years of presence in the land.”

Heymann described archaeology as a process of “liberation”, freeing the ancient city.

“In our excavations, we are watching the ancient city rise again,” she said. “The city is being  liberated from her millennia-old prison through the archaeological excavations.”

Heymann noted that this is an auspicious time for the undertaking, for liberating Jerusalem from the sands of time.

“This is timely, since we are in the Jubilee year,” she said. “Liberation and freedom stands at the core of the concept of the Jubilee.”

And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubilee unto you. Leviticus 25:10

She takes her cue from the Bible, explaining that archaeology is literally manifesting prophecy by uncovering the glory of the city.

Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Yerushalayim; Isaiah 52:2

As a result, she believes her job is an active part in the prophecy.

“I began Jerusalem Watch to connect people to the fact that Jerusalem is literally rising from the dust and ashes, just as Isaiah promised,” said Heymann. “When people connect to this, they are literally becoming a part of the tangible fulfillment of prophecy.”

Heymann’s connection to Jerusalem has made prophecy a daily part of her life.

“I really see the Bible and the Prophets as ancient principles that can help us in modern times,” Heymann said.

Heymann emphasized this as the universal connection between Jews and Christians.

“Prophecy in the Bible is the mutual overlap between Jews and Christians,” she said. “We can come together on this. Jerusalem is the connecting point.”

“Ancient Jerusalem’s rise stands at the core of the End-of-Days events. It is key that people not only learn about her true location – the best kept secret of our time – but also to realign with the city by understanding her past and  giving moral and tangible support in the present.”

Heymann explained that keeping the city whole, reconnecting the past with the present, is a Biblical mandate not to be ignored. Heymann cited Psalms to illustrate her point.

For my brethren and companions’ sakes, I will now say: ‘Peace be within thee.’ Psalms 122:8

“The word peace, shalom, is embedded in the name of Jerusalem,” Heymann said. “But the root of the word peace is shalem, completeness.”

To bring this about is a simple step: a change in attitude.

“What I think we need to bring these prophecies to the forefront, to actually make them happen, is a much stronger awakening,” Heymann said. “There needs to be a much deeper commitment to these dynamics.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8563

May 18

US, UK, Jordanian forces enter S. Syria

US special forces, together with British and Jordanian elite troops, moved into southern Syria late Sunday, May 14. They were acting to counter the Syrian-Iranian scheme to nullify the American plan for posting Jordanian forces in southeastern Syria, which timed for the days before US President Donald Trump’s trip to the Middle East.

The US-led armored force with British and Jordanian units crossed from northern Jordan through the Tanf Border-Crossing between the Hashemite Kingdom, Iraq and Syria, and took up positions capable of consolidating their control of the main road between Palmyra and Baghdad. Some of their moves were coordinated with Israel.
(See map).
This push aimed at countering the drive in the last few days by hundreds of Syrian troops, Iranian-backed Shiite militias and Hizballah’s Radwan special forces, with tanks and heavy equipment, to take over the town of Sabaa Biyar. Located in sparsely desert territory, this town lies 110km west of the Syrian-Iraqi border, 95km north of the Syrian-Jordanian border and 128km east of Damascus.

Its high strategic importance for Tehran, Damascus and Hizballah lies in its command of the border between Syria, Iraq and Jordan and of Highway No. 1 which links the Jordanian capital of Amman with Baghdad.

debkafile’s military sources explain that Damascus and Tehran acted to pre-empt the US-Jordanian-Israeli military operations along the Israeli and Jordanian borders with Syria, lest they lead to the carving out of US-controlled security zones in southern Syria.

Our military sources add that Moscow too eyes the new US-led military movements with mistrust, in view of its potential impact on the Russian plan for four ceasefire zones in Syria, in cooperation with Iranian and Turkish forces. The Russians are accordingly feeding Tehran and Damascus intelligence on the US-led movements.
On Sunday, too, the Israeli Defense Forces launched a large-scale military exercise in the Galilee and Golan regions close to its borders with Syria and Lebanon. The war game may well run over its final date in order to keep a substantial military force poised on along Israel’s northern borders, in case of attempts to disrupt the Trump visits to Saudi Arabia and Israel from May 22 to May 24.

Other military movements in the region this week were taken by the Iraqi army and Iraqi Shiite militias under the command of Iranian Revolutionary Guards officers. Iran continued to pour additional troops into Damascus through the Baghdad-Damascus highway, on the one hand, while, on the other, Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi offered Washington two of his army’s divisions, which would be sent into Syria to support US military operations in the southeast.
For the time being, the Trump administration’s plans for an offensive against the Islamic State appear to have been put on a back burner.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8550

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