Iran Regime Claims Unrest Defeated, But Unjustified Imprisonment May Continue Protests

The most powerful security force in Iran and a close ally of the regime has claimed that the Iranian uprising has been crushed, but media reports and Twitter are implying that hasn’t happened yet. A reason for the latest outcry in Iran is due to the hundreds of people imprisoned …

Israel—An Ancient King of Making Glass

Centuries before the Land of Israel was a hub for the high-tech industry, the region was among the world leaders in another profession involving science, skill, and specialized knowledge: glass making. The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) announced in a press release on Monday that they have discovered 1,600-year-old kilns used …

US to UN: Drone Incursion to Israel ‘Wake-up Call’ that Iran Plans to Stay in Syria

The Iranian drone that violated Israeli airspace last week was more than just an escalation—it’s a sign that peace in Syria is a ways away according to the United States and regional conflict may be here to stay. Nikki Haley, the US Ambassador to the United Nations, warned the powerful …

Investigation: Turkey Turns ‘Blind Eye’—Sometimes Encourages—Hamas Illicit Activity

A Turkish citizen arrested in Israel for working with Hamas has helped unleash an investigation that led to accusations on Monday that Turkey has been ignoring—and at times enabling—Hamas fundraising and militaristic activity and has even indirectly allowed the terror group opportunity to research weapons for fighting Israel. The delve …

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Israel Foils Hamas Money Laundering Ring Linking Turkey to Hebron

August 6, 2017 News

Hamas’ complicated money-laundering scheme. Photo courtesy of the ISA.

A terrorist money-laundering plot involving a cast of Hamas militants and their affiliates in two different countries had managed to get almost $200,000 into the heart of Israel’s Judea and Samaria region (also known as the West Bank). That is, until Israeli security forces recently busted the ring.

Hamas used couriers who went to Turkey to obtain funding “under the guise of business trips,” said a press release last week from the Israel Security Agency (ISA). Once in Turkey, the couriers met up with a Hamas command center militant who provided the couriers with tens of thousands of dollars. These monies were then used to purchase goods in Turkey, which in turn were shipped to the Israeli city of Hebron. There, the goods would be sold and “the funds given to Hamas militants in Hebron, minus fees,” according to the ISA.

Noted the press release, “The uncovering of the infrastructure indicates the unrelenting motivation of Hamas militants in Turkey and the Gaza Strip to the increase of Hamas terrorism in Judea and Samaria.” With the investigation complete, the IDF military prosecutor was set to file indictments on the guilty partners soon. … Continue Reading

Israeli Cyber Defense Center Has Blocked ‘Dozens of National-Level’ Attacks

July 30, 2017 News

Prime Minister Netanyahu at cyber center. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon / GPO

With cyber attacks targeting governments, businesses and other groups around the global regularly, Israel set up a national cyber event response center in September 2016. Since then, the center has been involved in blocking “dozens of national-level cyber-attacks” along with addressing “hundreds of cyber events,” according to an Israeli press release.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently toured the National Cyber Defense Authority (NCDA) facility that houses the center. He emphasized the importance of the center’s work. “The cyber threat is one of the biggest threats against both developing countries and our country,” Netanyahu was quoted by the press release as saying. “There are very many elements in the world that can disrupt our lives, steal bank accounts, obstruct our energy supply and cause accidents and sabotage in field after field. The threat here is very great.” … Continue Reading

Top European Court Upholds Terrorist Designation for Hamas

July 30, 2017 Peace and Conflict

Hamas has fired thousands of rockets at Israel over the years, among other acts of terror. Illustrative photo of spent Rockets fired from Gaza. By Joshua Spurlock.

Europe’s most powerful court last week overturned a decision to annul the European Union’s designation of Hamas as a terrorist organization. The Independent reported that the European Court of Justice dismissed a decision from a lower court that argued the designation needed to be the result of an independent European investigation and had strictly been based on news reports and the internet.

The ECJ instead noted that simply an “ongoing risk” of terrorist activities was required to be on the terror list and that the EU did not need to do it’s own investigation. Not that that would have been too difficult. Hamas has launched thousands of rockets at Israel, claimed credit for suicide bombings and kidnappings in a period spanning multiple decades. The United States—which also designates Hamas as a terrorist organization—applauded the European court’s decision.

A statement from the U.S. State Department on the court action noted that Hamas “remains engaged in terrorist activity.” Despite a change in leadership at Hamas, the U.S. not only remains troubled by the organization, but the new leader only underscores those concerns given that he too has been designated as a terrorist by the U.S. The State Department statement said, “Hamas’s election of Yehya Sinwar as their political leader in Gaza earlier this year illustrates that the organization remains a terrorist threat. Sinwar is a hardline military commander.” … Continue Reading

Iranian Space Launch Condemned as Akin to Intercontinental Ballistic Missile

Could Iran’s latest missile launch help them hit the West with nuclear weapons? Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

The recent Iranian launch of a space launch vehicle missile last Thursday received condemnation from the United States, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom—which is especially understandable given that the missile research is ultimately a threat to their nations. A statement from the four nations—which compromise two-thirds of the powerful P5+1 group of nations that reached a nuclear deal with Iran in 2015—linked the space missile launch to efforts to develop missiles that can travel across continents and potentially carry nuclear warheads.

The statement, published by the U.S. State Department, pointed to United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231as calling upon Iran to “not undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such technology like this launch. Space launch vehicles use technologies that are closely related to those of ballistic missiles development, in particular to those of Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles.”

The ominous linkage of the latest test to weapons of mass destruction was paralleled with a warning from the U.S. about Iran’s behavior. … Continue Reading

United States Slams Hezbollah as Dangerous to Lebanon, Israel, Region

July 25, 2017 Peace and Conflict

U.S. Ambassador the U.N. Nikki Haley. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Mission to the UN

Hezbollah likes to present themselves as the defender of the Lebanese people, and the United States not only disagrees but sees them as a serious threat to their own people. U.S. President Donald Trump, in a press briefing on Tuesday with Lebanese Prime Minister Sa’ad Hariri, called Hezbollah a “menace to the Lebanese state, the Lebanese people, and the entire region.”

Trump, whose comments were posted to the White House website, went on to accuse Hezbollah of actions that threaten a new war with Israel and blamed them for enflaming the devastating Syrian civil war. And Hezbollah certainly isn’t doing it for Lebanon. “With the support of Iran, the organization is also fueling the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria,” said Trump of the terror organization whose militias are fighting for Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. “Hezbollah likes to portray itself as a defender of Lebanese interests, but it’s very clear that its true interests are those of itself and its sponsor—Iran.”

Another American official also took time to warn the powerful U.N. Security Council of the dangers of Hezbollah and contrasted the United Nations’ relaxed approach to the terrorist organization with their obsession over Israel. … Continue Reading

Regional Tensions Diffused after Israeli Security Guard Attacked in Jordan

July 24, 2017 News

PM Netanyahu speaks with Israeli Amb. Shlain & embassy security guard.

The Israelis managed to successfully work out the return of an embassy security officer from Jordan on Monday after the officer was forced to defend himself against a Jordanian attacker, killing him. The motive behind the Jordanian attack is unclear. It came against the backdrop of Arab anger over Israel installing metal detectors to prevent terror attacks at the entrance to the Temple Mount, which houses the Islamic Dome of the Rock shrine and has sparked major protests.

However, the Jordanian news agency Petra reported that the incident occurred after a disagreement at the officer’s apartment at the Israeli embassy over work being done by Jordanian carpenters. Petra claimed that after the dispute turned physical, one of the carpenters stabbed the Israeli, who shot and killed the carpenter. The landlord of the apartment was also killed in the incident. The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that the Israeli was attacked from behind and stabbed with a screwdriver. Both reports indicated the Jordanian struck first and the Israeli responded in self-defense.

Yet despite that fact, the potential for a diplomatic crisis remained, especially given the Temple Mount tensions. In just one day, the Israeli was returned home to Israel and the crisis appears to have been averted. … Continue Reading

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