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Gazans Set Fire to Fence Structure ahead of Mass March; Israeli Tanks Respond

March 28, 2018 News

Is war brewing with Gaza? Israeli tank. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Just one day after three Gazan terrorists were caught in Israel after sneaking across the border, suspects on Wednesday set fire to a structure surrounding the security fence separating Gaza from Israel. The IDF Spokesperson posted to Twitter that the suspects “did not cross the security fence and did not infiltrate Israel.” The Times of Israel clarified in their article on the incident that the targeted structure was a wooden platform attached to an old Gaza border crossing.

In response, Israeli tanks fired at a pair of Hamas observation posts, according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Twitter feed. Noted the Tweet, “The IDF views with great severity any attempt to damage the security fence, as well as security infrastructure.”

The fence attack not only follows an infiltration incident, but also comes ahead of plans for a mass march by Palestinians towards the border area, per the Times of Israel article. The leader of the Hamas terrorist organization reiterated their support for the march in comments on Wednesday posted in an article to the Hamas website. While Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh claimed that the march would be peaceful, he made it clear that Hamas would continue to use violence against Israel to pursue their goals. … Continue Reading

2,000-Year-Old Jewish Coins Promoting Redemption Found in Temple Mount Area

March 26, 2018 News

Ancient Jewish revolution coins. Photo credit: Eilat Mazar/Hebrew University

The last time that the Temple stood in Jerusalem, Jewish revolutionaries were holding out against Rome in a brutal siege, minting their own coins in independent defiance. Those coins included the inscriptions of “For the Freedom of Zion” or “For the Redemption of Zion”, highlighting their struggle. Nearly two thousand years later, some of those coins were discovered near the Temple Mount by Hebrew University archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar. And it’s not just the history that’s eye-catching; the time of year for the discovery caught Dr. Mazar’s attention as well.

“A discovery like this—ancient coins bearing the words ‘Freedom’ and ‘Redemption’—found right before the Jewish Festival of Freedom—Passover—begins is incredibly moving,” Dr. Mazar was quoted by Monday’s Hebrew University press release as saying. The Festival of Passover—marking the Israeli redemption from Egyptian slavery as found in the Biblical book of Exodus—begins this year on Friday evening. … Continue Reading

French Consulate Worker Helped Smuggle Dozens of Guns for Palestinians

March 19, 2018 News

French consular vehicle. Photo courtesy of ISA

A French national employed at the country’s consulate in Jerusalem helped a Palestinian network smuggle six dozen guns—including two assault rifles—from the Gaza Strip to arms dealers in Judea and Samaria (West Bank). The smuggling ring was busted by the Israel Security Agency (ISA) and the Israel Police, who found that the French Consulate worker—Romain Franck—was acting for personal financial gain and of his own accord, according to an ISA press release. The Israelis kept the French regularly updated and Franck’s superiors were not aware of the illegal activity. Nonetheless, the Israelis are taking it very seriously.

“This is a very grave incident in which the immunity and privileges granted to foreign missions in Israel was cynically exploited in order to smuggle dozens of weapons which could have been used in terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians and members of the security forces,” a senior ISA officer said in the press release.

Franck used a vehicle that belonged to the French consulate—which the ISA press release noted received the customary lighter security check as a foreign mission vehicle—to smuggle weapons on five different occasions in recent months. … Continue Reading

Israeli Soldiers Killed in Car Terror Attack; Bombs Blast Near Gaza Border Again

March 18, 2018 News

Israeli soldiers murdered in car terror attack. Israeli Soldiers. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

It has been violent four days in Israel. Two Israeli soldiers were killed and two more were injured in what is being described as a “deliberate” Palestinian car ramming attack on Friday as Israelis prepared for the Sabbath, just one day after explosive devices were set off along the Gaza Strip security fence. And then the day after the car attack, another improvised explosive device (IED) exploded at the Gaza fence, and a day later a security guard was stabbed in Jerusalem. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld on Twitter reported sadly that the guard later died from severe injuries.  The IDF Spokesperson’s Twitter feed reported that no one was reportedly injured by the Thursday or Saturday Gaza blasts. Tragically, the car ramming on Friday—like the stabbing on Sunday—was deadly.

The IDF Spokesperson tweeted that the murdered soldiers—one an officer in the IDF—were attacked by a Palestinian terrorist while they were “securing routes” near an Israeli community in the Samaria region. The ramming terrorist was injured and hospitalized. Israeli Prime Minister’s Office spokesman Ofir Gendelman cited the Israel Security Agency (ISA) as confirming that it wasn’t an accident.

Gendelman tweeted that the 26-year-old Palestinian terrorist Alaa Kabaha “said during his interrogation that it was a deliberate terror attack. The investigation about the attack is on going.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the attack an act of murder and expressed his condolences to the families of victims. … Continue Reading

Terrorism Thwarted? Israel Intercepts IDF Uniforms Headed to Hamas

March 14, 2018 News

Hamas tried to disguise themselves as IDF troops, but Israel foiled their plans. Israeli Soldiers. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Israel set back plans for a likely Hamas terror attack this week when they intercepted Israeli military uniforms at a crossing into Gaza that were ultimately destined for Hamas. The intent was to smuggle the IDF clothing into Gaza so Hamas terrorists could “disguise themselves as Israeli soldiers when perpetrating cross border attacks,” Israeli Prime Minister’s Office Spokesman Ofir Gendelman said via Twitter.

“Innocent lives were saved,” tweeted Gendelman on Tuesday, who reported the incident and called the intercept “a new blow to Hamas’ efforts to attack Israel.” Terrorists have used disguises in the past to gain access for acts of terror. While Gendelman didn’t specify what attack was likely planned, Hamas has sought to engage in kidnappings in the past in an effort to trade Israelis for captured terrorists, such as was done with Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. … Continue Reading

US NATO Head Visits Israel: Working with Jewish State to ‘Promote Stability’ in Middle East

March 11, 2018 News

The Americans are are working with Israel to keep the Middle East stable. American flag. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

The United States and Israel hold the Juniper Cobra joint military exercise regularly, but don’t think that cooperation has become stale. Over the weekend, the top military commander of NATO and the head of the US European Command (USEUCOM) decided to visit Israel during the exercise to emphasize the importance of the US-Israel partnership to American troops, and in so doing sent a message in a day when Israel is threatened by a variety of enemies across the Middle East.

“The US is deeply committed to the defense of Israel,” US Army General Curtis Scaparrotti said in a USEUCOM press release on the visit. “We will continue to work alongside them to promote stability throughout the region, not only for the purposes of this exercise, but in the event of any real-world contingency.”

A US Army private quoted in the press release certainly caught the message behind the NATO commander’s visit. “To have General Scaparrotti make time to speak with us, shows us how important this exercise truly is,” said US Army PV2 Jacob Sharp. “It really reinforces the importance of us being here, and our relationship with Israel.”

The Israelis appreciated the meaning of the visit as well. “This visit is part of the close relationship between the US and Israel and its armies, based on shared values ​​and interests,” tweeted the IDF Spokesperson on Friday. … Continue Reading

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