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IDF Soldier Killed in Gaza Fight, Rockets Sirens Resume as Abbas Threatens ‘Tough Measures’ against Hamas

November 11, 2018 Peace and Conflict, Uncategorized

Abbas is very upset with Hamas. PA President Mahmoud Abbas. Illustrative. Photo Courtesy of UN Photo/Marco Castro

An Israeli soldier was killed during “special forces’ operational activity in Gaza” and multiple projectiles were launched at Israel from Gaza on Sunday according to the IDF Twitter page, the same day Hamas was threatened by a powerful member of their own people. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday leveled perhaps his harshest critique of the Hamas terrorist group that runs the Gaza Strip on Sunday when he accused them of a conspiracy to “foil” an independent Palestinian state. Abbas’ comments, which were published in a report by the Ma’an News Agency, further included a warning that the Palestinian government in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) that he heads would be taking “tough measures against Hamas” in the days ahead.

That same day, the IDF Spokesperson reported on Twitter that one IDF soldier was killed and another wounded in an “exchange of fire” during the aforementioned special forces activity. Following that post, numerous rocket siren warnings were posted by the IDF Spokesperson, with one Tweet noting that two projectiles from Gaza had been intercepted by the Iron Dome. The situation was serious enough that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shortened his visit to return to Israel from Paris, where he was meeting with world leaders and marking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, according to a press release from Netanyahu’s office.

The day’s violence came as Abbas claimed that Hamas’ plan to prevent the creation of a Palestinian state would not succeed, and neither would the American-led peace process and it’s anticipated “Deal of the Century” for peace. Abbas isn’t alone in his recent critiques of Hamas, and ironically it’s one of main proponents of the American peace plan that also slammed the Gaza rulers last week. … Continue Reading

Report: Iranian Missile Test Video Was Faked

September 28, 2017 Uncategorized

The Iranian missile test last week apparently never happened and the video footage of said launch was actually from more than seven months ago, according to a report from Fox News. The Iranians claimed to have tested a missile capable of reaching Israel and carrying multiple warheads according to the Fars News Agency as reported earlier by The Mideast Update. But Fox News cited two American officials who said the footage of the supposed test was actually of another failed test earlier this year.

The Jerusalem Post later reported that Israel also said that their intelligence did not pick up any indication of a missile test launch. However, had the test been legitimate, as Iran claimed, Israel noted that it actually would have violated a United Nations resolution.

In a Twitter post after the alleged test but before the reports indicating it was faked, the Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Yuval Rotem, tweeted, “#Iran missile test violates UNSCR 2231. Iran is directly challenging intl community. Robust response is imperative.”

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, September 28, 2017)

Netanyahu Says All Embassies Should Move to Jerusalem, Believes Most Will

January 29, 2017 News, Uncategorized

Will Trump be Israel’s best friend? U.S. Presidential Candidate Donald Trump (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

Plans to move the United States embassy in Israel to Jerusalem look to be on hold for now, but that doesn’t change Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s conviction that it should still happen. In fact, the Israeli leader said Sunday he not only thinks the U.S. embassy should move, but all embassies should come to the Jewish capital—and that someday most will.

“I would like to take this opportunity to make it unequivocally clear that our position has always been, and will always be, that the US embassy needs to be here, in Jerusalem,” said Netanyahu in comments released by his office. “Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and it is proper that not only should the American embassy be here, but all embassies should come here, and I believe that over time most of them will indeed come here, to Jerusalem.” The Prime Minister’s words come just days after U.S. President Donald Trump said, “it’s too early” to talk about the embassy move. … Continue Reading

Israeli Missile Defense Upgraded, Again

January 19, 2017 Uncategorized

Already one of the leaders in missile defense, Israel’s capabilities took another step forward with the implementation of the Arrow-3 missile defense interceptor missile. The Arrow-3 expands upon the range and altitude of Israel’s interceptors, which are designed to shoot enemy missiles out of the sky. The Arrow-3 is also capable of more precise missile interception, according to the press release announcing the new missile’s operation from Israel’s Ministry of Defense.
“The combined interception capabilities of the Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 will significantly reduce the possibilities of ballistic missiles impacting the State of Israel,” noted the press release.

… Continue Reading

Russian Use of Iranian Air Base to Strike ISIS Could Violate UN Rule

Are the Russians breaking the law by using an Iranian air base? Russian President Vladimir Putin. Illustrative. Photo courtesy of the office of the President of Russia.

Are the Russians breaking the law by using an Iranian air base? Russian President Vladimir Putin. Illustrative. Photo courtesy of the office of the President of Russia.

Russia’s using of an Iranian air base to launch airstrikes on combatants in Syria doesn’t just “complicate” things according to the US State Department—it could also violate international law. At question is United Nations Resolution 2231, one of the UN resolutions that addresses Iran. “It’s a bit more nuanced and complicated. It involves sometimes allowing certain weaponry to be used or housed in Iran,” said spokesman Mark Toner in Wednesday’s press briefing posted to the State Department website. “Again, I don’t have the language in front of me, but it’s very nuanced and it’s very complex… We’re assessing whether this would constitute a violation.”

While lawyers are reviewing the Russian decision to use Hamedan Air Base in Iran, Toner said that the actions at the least “not helpful.” Said Toner, “It continues to complicate what is already a very dangerous situation in and around [the Syrian city of] Aleppo when you have Russia using Iranian air bases as a way to carry out more intensive bombing runs that are hitting, continue to hit, civilian populations. And so our concerns remain very vivid.” Russia, not surprisingly, disagreed with the US position. … Continue Reading

Palestinian Groups Oppose French Peace Proposal while Israel Backs Another

May 30, 2016 Uncategorized
Do the Palestinians really want peace with Israel? Illustrative banner of terrorists and Dome of the Rock. By Joshua Spurlock

Do the Palestinians really want peace with Israel? Illustrative banner of terrorists and Dome of the Rock. By Joshua Spurlock

Two states for two peoples has always been the stated goal of Israel-Palestinian peace talks, but the divisions among the Palestinians themselves sound more like two states for three peoples, or maybe four—if Israel is even included. While the Palestinian Authority (PA) has expressed support for the French push to revive a peace process, two of the other major Palestinian factions, which happen to also be terror groups, have made it clear the PA isn’t speaking for them.

The Ma’an News Agency reported that Hamas declared that the French proposal is a distraction and claimed the support by the PA is actually just on behalf of PA President Mahmoud Abbas and not the Palestinians themselves. The report said the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) took it even further, calling for open protests and “mass struggle” to “confront and bring down” the French plan—both in Israel and abroad. While the Palestinians were contradicting themselves, Israel was putting forth a united front backing elements of an older, more traditional peace plan. … Continue Reading

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