Help us bless the people of Israel.

Friday, August 7, 2020

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Every week, we post seven to ten news stories from Israel with a suggested prayer focus and scripture for each one, guiding readers how to pray for Israel’s most urgent needs. This Prayer Update is also sent to over 18,000 subscribers every Friday by e-mail. Please contact us at intl.office@bridgesforpeace.com if you would like to receive this Prayer Update by e-mail.

We are now also releasing a weekly video news brief with the most important Israel-related news highlights from the week to keep you updated and help you pray for the peace of Jerusalem. 

Air Strikes, Blasts and Terror Cells: All Tense on Israel’s Northern Front

by Kate Norman

IDF soldiers watch the Israeli–Syrian border. (Illustrative)

Tuesday, 4 August 2020 | Tensions continue to simmer in Israel’s north as the Israeli military announced it conducted air strikes on Syrian military targets in response to an attempted attack on their shared border Sunday night.

On Monday night the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said it struck Syrian Air Force targets, including observation posts, intelligence systems, anti-aircraft artillery and command and control systems.

The strikes were in response to an incident the night before in which four terrorists crept to the border fence and placed an explosive device in an unmanned IDF outpost. The IDF posted security footage of the event, including the moment the terrorists were killed in an explosion from an overhead strike.

The military also published photos of the backpack used as an improvised explosive device that was left behind by the terrorists as well as a map of where the bomb was placed—within Israeli territory and only 25 meters (82 ft) from the border. The site is unmanned, but Israeli soldiers reportedly often patrol the area.

It is unclear which terror group or organization the men were from, the IDF spokesperson said. The military disarmed the explosive device and is studying it to determine their identity. Nonetheless, the military said it holds Syria responsible.

Normally, the IDF does not discuss or even confirm cross-border attacks. This was an exception, however, in what seems to be a strong statement to Syria and other countries (like Lebanon) where terror groups are operating and launching attacks on the Jewish state.

“In response to last night’s attempted attack from Syria, IDF aircraft have struck various military targets belonging to the Syrian Armed Forces,” Lt.–Col. Jonathan Conricus tweeted. “Attacks on Israel will not be tolerated.”

Another less-talked-about air strike also occurred in Syria just hours after Sunday night’s cross-border incident. The mysterious strike hit a military base in eastern Syria in the town of Abu Kamal, which lies along the Euphrates River, just over the border from Iraq. Reports from different Syrian media differ—the state-run SANA news agency claims that the strike only caused material damage while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports 15 Iran-affiliated Iraqi fighters were killed.

Also a threat to Israel’s northern border is Lebanese-based terror group Hezbollah. The group has vowed revenge for an air strike weeks ago on an Iranian weapons shipment in Damascus that killed one of their fighters. The strike was attributed to Israel, even though the Jewish state never acknowledged its involvement.

Just a few days after that strike, the IDF thwarted what it called a “terror squad” attempting a cross-border attack. Israeli troops fired on a group of armed Hezbollah fighters who had crossed into Israeli territory, driving them back into Lebanon.

The terror group denied that it was an attack and especially that it was their big act of revenge. That, Hezbollah vowed, is still coming.

Israel is taking the threat seriously, and the military remains on high alert to guard Israel’s northern borders.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, August 4, 2020)

Photo Credit: Cpl. Gal Ashuach, IDF Spokesperson's Unit/flickr.com

Photo License: Flickr

Prayer Focus
Ask the Lord for His protection over Israel’s northern border. Pray that the IDF’s retaliatory actions will serve as a strong deterrent to those who would attempt to infiltrate Israel, and ask the Lord to bring to a swift end any plans Hezbollah may have to seek revenge.

Scripture

A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked.


- Psalm 91:7–8

Israel Offers Aid after Massive Blast in Beirut Leaves Dozens Dead

by Ilse Strauss

Two massive explosions decimated the Beirut port (illustrative).

Wednesday, 5 August 2020 | Utter devastation as far as the eye can see. Blood-encrusted survivors stumbling vacant eyed amid the destruction. First responders scurrying frantically to pull survivors from the rubble. People desperately trying to establish the fate of a loved one. A giant mushroom cloud of soot and ashes filling the Beirut skyline.

This was the horrific scene yesterday afternoon after two mammoth explosions tore through the Lebanese capital, engulfing the Beirut port in a ball of fire and launching a colossal shockwave across the city that decimated everything in its path. The blasts, which witnesses compared to an atomic bomb going off, could be heard as far as Cyprus, some 150 miles (240 km) away.

Twelve hours and counting after the explosion, it remains unclear how many people remain buried under the rubble. The death toll has already topped 100 and is expected to rise as the fate of those who are missing becomes clear. Some 4,000 have been wounded.

As Lebanon wades through the chaos of a shattered city and reels to come to grips with what has been described as a national catastrophe, Israel is reaching out a helping hand to its neighbor.

While such a gesture is to be expected from congenial next-door nations, the relationship between Israel and Lebanon is fraught with war and tension. Lebanon does not recognize Israel’s right to exist and there are no diplomatic relations between Jerusalem and Beirut.

Still, “this is the time to transcend conflict,” tweeted the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesperson in Arabic, Avichay Adraee.

Backing up the words with actions, Israel has already offered the Lebanese government medical and humanitarian assistance. Given the lack of diplomatic relations, Israel made the offer via international mediators. Moreover, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has tasked the national security advisor to contact the UN envoy in the Middle East to discuss ways in which Israel can help.

Various Israeli lawmakers also reached out with messages of condolences on social media. “We share the pain of the Lebanese people and sincerely reach out to offer our aid at this difficult time,” tweeted President Reuven Rivlin.

Bids to help are not confined to government. Three Israeli hospitals—Ziv Medical Center and Rambam Medical Center in the north and Sheba Medical Center outside Tel Aviv—have offered to help care for the thousands of wounded as the already corona-crippled hospitals in Beirut have no way of coping with the wave of injured and dying.

The Ziv Medical Center confirmed that the facility and its staff are “experienced and prepared,” referring to the extensive experience gained treating more than 5,000 Syrians wounded in the Syrian Civil War.

“We are obligated to help anyone who needs assistance, especially our neighbors,” Sheba Medical Center director Yitshak Kreiss added. “We are ready and prepared for any mission we will be given.”

Beirut is no stranger to violence. A brutal 15-year Lebanese Civil War, a spate of bombings and terror attacks as well as two bloody conflicts with Israel mean the residents of Beirut are well acquainted with shuddering blasts. Yet yesterday’s explosions were the most powerful the city has ever experienced.

Although specifics of what caused the blast remain unclear, Prime Minister Hassan Diab said some 3,000 tons of agricultural fertilizer ammonium nitrate caught fire and exploded.

General Security Chief Abbas Ibrahim added that the “highly explosive material” had been confiscated years ago and stored in the port warehouse, located minutes from Beirut’s shopping and entertainment hubs.

The blast reportedly struck with the force of an earthquake, flattening countless buildings and littering once bustling streets with debris and twisted metal husks of burnt out vehicles. Sidewalks covered with broken glass glimmer like jeweled carpets. Miles from the epicenter, balconies were blown off, ceilings caved in and windows shattered. Entire neighborhoods have been reduced to a war zone.

As the full scope of the devastation and suffering emerges, Israel is holding out hope that their Lebanese neighbors will rise above decades of hatred and animosity to clasp the Jewish state’s outstretched hand of help.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, August 5, 2020)

Photo Credit: Chandler Cruttenden/unsplash.com

Prayer Focus
Pray for the victims of this horrible disaster, for the wounded, the families of those who were killed and the hundreds of thousands who have been left homeless. Ask the Lord to open the hearts of the Lebanese leadership to accept the help that Israel is offering and pray that in the midst of the tragedy, many will see the reality of the God of Israel.

Scripture

That all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God; there is no other.


- 1 Kings 8:60

Israeli COVID-19 Research Delegation to India Completes its Mission

The joint team from Israel collected more than 20,000 samples from coronavirus patients in the city of Dehli, India (pictured).

Thursday, 6 August 2020 | The Israeli delegation, led by the Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D), in the Israel Ministry of Defense (IMoD), and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has completed its mission in India: collecting sufficient samples to test and validate four Israeli diagnostic technologies. The team will be returning to Israel in the upcoming days, with more than 20,000 samples collected from COVID-19 patients.

Israel’s Defense Attaché to India, Col. Asaf Maller said: “The goal is to bring to the world the technological capability to perform rapid corona tests within tens of seconds.”

Head of the delegation on behalf of the DDR&D, Lt. Col. Yaniv Meirman said: “We are in the midst of processing and analyzing the data that we have collected, and will continue this process upon our arrival to Israel. We are optimistic and hopeful that we will put in place a system for the rapid diagnosis of the Corona virus.”

The joint team is returning to Israel upon meeting its ambitious goal of collecting more than 20,000 samples from verified coronavirus patients within 9 days. They set up six drive-in sites in the city of Delhi for sampling purposes, and two labs for data processing using technology brought from Israel.

The Government of India assigned hundreds of local professionals to collect the samples (50–100 per site), from thousands of volunteers via non-invasive means. Four types of samples were collected from each patient: sound, saliva, breath and a swab test. 

The activity was supervised by joint Israeli–Indian teams at all sites, ensuring that everyone complies with predetermined guidelines and regulation.

The samples that were collected were inserted into systems based on artificial intelligence, enabling the DDR&D personnel and representatives of Israeli industries to begin processing and analyzing the data. This procedure will continue upon the return of the delegation to Israel.

Israel’s Defense Attaché to India, Col. Asaf Maller said: “The goal is to bring to the world the technological capability to perform rapid corona tests within tens of seconds, which will enable the opening of airports, office buildings, schools, train stations and more. The Indian support for the project is amazing. All research and development bodies, including the scientific adviser to Prime Minister Modi, have joined the operation in full force. We hope that in a few months we will be able to bring good news to the world.”

Head of the delegation on behalf of the DDR&D, Lt.Col. Yaniv Meirman said: “We came to India to enrich Israeli diagnostic technologies and while there, we found real partners—partners who were fully committed to the success of the mission. We are in the midst of processing and analyzing the data that we have collected, and will continue this process upon our arrival to Israel. We are optimistic and hopeful that in the near future, we will put in place a system for the rapid diagnosis of the coronavirus, which will make it possible to further open the Israeli economy, ‘open’ the skies and reduce the damage caused by the pandemic.”

The activity in India was conducted under strict guidelines and regulations to ensure the safety and health of all those involved. During their stay in India, members of the delegation underwent three coronavirus tests and were found to be negative for the virus.

Source: (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs originally published this article on August 5, 2020. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Annie Spratt/unsplash.com

Prayer Focus
Pray that God will bless this project with immediate success, giving Israel a system for rapid diagnosis of COVID-19, and pray that it will have the overall positive impact the DDR&D is hoping for.

Scripture

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.


- Psalm 23:4

Iron Dome Intercepts Rocket Launched from the Gaza Strip

Israeli police in Sderot after a rocket was fired and damage was caused.

Monday, 3 August 2020 | The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] reported on Sunday that the Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory.

The launch set off sirens in the southern town of Sderot as well as in the Sha’ar HaNegev Regional Council in the northwestern Negev.

As sirens blared, dozens of citizens were enjoying the inauguration screening at a new drive-in cinema complex at Sderot’s municipal market.

A vehicle was damaged by shrapnel following the interception near the Gaza border.

No group has yet to claim responsibility for the attack.

A Hamas operative who fled to Israel after facing persecution from the group and “family issues” brought in a trove of valuable intelligence on the Gaza terrorist faction, Shin Bet [Israeli internal] security service said last Thursday.

The organization named the man as Izz al-Din Hussein, a 24-year-old member of the Hamas air defense unit from Jabaliya in northern Gaza, who swam to Israel from the coastal enclave and was immediately arrested by the IDF.

The Shin Bet said that Hussein told investigators he was drafted into the military wing of Hamas in 2013. From 2018 until his detention, he was a member of the Hamas air defense unit, holding a command position as head of a squadron using shoulder-fired missiles.

Source: (This article was published by Ynetnews on August 2, 2020. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Micky Rosenfeld/Police foreign press spokesman

Prayer Focus
Continue to pray for the border with Gaza and the southern region of Israel. Plead with the Lord for an end to rocket attacks on innocent Israelis and pray that Izz al-Din Hussein will provide intelligence information that will be invaluable in Israel’s efforts to end Hamas’s reign of terror.

Scripture

Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; defend me from those who rise up against me. Deliver me from the workers of iniquity, and save me from bloodthirsty men. For look, they lie in wait for my life.


- Psalm 59:1–3a

What Happened to Israeli Sovereignty in Judea and Samaria?

by Ilse Strauss

Ofra, a Jewish community in Samaria

Tuesday, 4 August 2020 | In the run-up to July 1—Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s target date to put the extension of Israeli authority in parts of the biblical heartland to a Knesset (Parliament) vote—the push for sovereignty dominated the international discourse, with everyone from world leaders to laymen weighing in on the topic. However, after the target date came and went with no movement on the matter, the issue all but disappeared from the public agenda. Does this mean sovereignty is off the table?

According to Netanyahu, the answer is no. The prime minister said the Jewish state has not given up on the prospect, but the green light for the go ahead must come from Washington, not Jerusalem. And Israel has not yet received the American nod of approval.

“The issue of applying sovereignty is in Washington,” Netanyahu told fellow Likud lawmakers at a faction meeting yesterday. “It has not been taken off the agenda. The option still exists.”

Netanyahu’s sovereignty proposal pertains to Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria as well as the Jordan Valley, comprising 30% of the contested area. The remaining 70% is set aside for a future Palestinian state. While in line with US President Donald Trump’s peace plan released earlier this year, it drew sharp criticism—and threats of backlash and sanctions—from the United Nations, the European Union as well as a number of European and Arab states. Moreover, in line with a policy of boycotting the Trump administration following the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the Palestinians rejected Trump’s plan out of hand.

Regardless, with the backing of the US, Israel’s road to sovereignty in Judea and Samaria seemed paved—contingent on a final “yes” from the White House. Recent months have, however, seen the staunch support cooling as the US focused its time and energy on battling the raging coronavirus pandemic.

Avi Berkowitz, Trump’s Middle East envoy, was in Israel ahead of July 1, meeting with top Israel brass to discuss a way forward, yet the meetings ended without agreeing on a decisive course of action. Sticking points reportedly included sensitive details like borders, dealing with backlash, getting the Palestinians on board and the scale on which to proceed.

Subsequent meetings in the White House ahead of the deadline also failed to elicit a pledge of US support—or the critical go ahead—for a concrete course of action. And in the five weeks since, the White House has remained mum on its position regarding Israeli sovereignty.

Sources in the Trump Administration did, however, tell Israeli media that the US remains committed to implement the peace plan and continues to meet with Israeli role-players to find solutions to the sovereignty sticking points. “Post Berkowitz’s trip to the region, the team has continued to work on the details but do not have an update at the moment,” the Jerusalem Post quoted the source as saying.

According to the source, a green light from the US is contingent on further discussions between Jerusalem and Washington, particularly pertaining to a goodwill “package” offered to the Palestinians that would sweeten the deal and compel them to get on board.

The source said an agreement between Israel and the US on moving ahead could come as early as this month. As August draws to a close, so does the window of opportunity. With the November elections coming up soon, President Trump’s attentions will be focused elsewhere come September, putting Israel’s sovereignty push on the back burner.

Which brings us back to the question: what happened to Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria? It seems that nobody has a decisive answer. And thus the waiting game continues.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, August 4, 2020)

Photo Credit: Brenda Groat/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Pray for the will of the Lord to be done regarding the extension of Israeli sovereignty in areas of the biblical heartland. Pray that any necessary nod of approval from US authorities will come sooner rather than later, and pray that the Israel’s relationship with the US will remain strong as American elections approach.

Scripture

Then the LORD your God will bring you to the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it.


- Deuteronomy 30:5a

Israel Sets Up Public Refrigerators to Feed the Hungry

by Kate Norman

A community fridge stationed outside Power Coffeeworks in Jerusalem

Wednesday, 5 August 2020 | As Israel—like many other nations—deals with the coronavirus and its economic fallout, over a million Israelis have found themselves without work, and many are going hungry. Seeing the need and finding a creative solution, a few young Jerusalem residents started a new initiative that will help feed the hungry and reduce food waste.

“The Fridge” project has popped up in Jerusalem and other locations across the Jewish state in which vendors place their unused food into public outdoor refrigerators at the end of the day, making it available for people to take what they need. It’s a win-win: the food doesn’t go to waste, and people who find themselves struggling to make ends meet during the COVID crisis receive desperately needed food.

The first photos of one of the outdoor refrigerators spread across social media in June, announcing the new initiative.

“We’re not crying, you’re crying,” Israel announced on its Twitter page along with a photo of the fridge. The page is run by the Foreign Ministry’s digital diplomacy team.

“We [love] this incredible initiative by Jerusalem’s young residents to feed the needy and prevent food waste,” the Israel Twitter post continued.

The project was applauded by people around the world—many who said their own cities should emulate “The Fridge” initiative.

Since the start of the pandemic, more than one million Israelis are unemployed—not including those who have been placed on unpaid leave. The nation’s leaders are considering heading into another lockdown in a few weeks to curb the further spread of the virus—meaning even more people will likely lose their livelihoods. Yet amid the uncertainty, bright spots like The Fridge project bring hope and joy as the people of Israel go out of their way to help each other through this uncertain time.

Bridges for Peace is also here to stand with and support the people of Israel through this crisis. We have received numerous calls for help as more and more Israelis struggle to make ends meet and put food on the table.

Help us answer their cries for help. By donating to our Food Project, you can not only help us feed people in desperate need, you can give the gift of love and hope to people who need it terribly.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, August 5, 2020)

Photo Credit: Michio Nagata/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Thank the Lord for this brilliant and innovative idea and pray for its ongoing success in Israel and around the world. Also pray that the Lord will continue to touch the hearts of Christians, moving them to give generously as Bridges for Peace works to keep up with the increasing number of desperately needy and mounting requests for assistance.

Scripture

The generous soul will be made rich, and he who waters will also be watered himself.


- Proverbs 11:25

Iran: The Mullahs Are Excited

by Majid Rafizadeh~Gatestone Institute

Joe Biden, former vice president of the United States

Monday, 3 August 2020 | One of the best gifts that the ruling mullahs [clerics] of Iran can receive is if Joe Biden, former vice president, becomes president of the United States.

The regime is currently struggling politically and financially. Tehran’s economy is on the verge of collapse. Inflation and unemployment rates are at record high levels, and the regime is finding it extremely difficult to pay its employees, let alone its more luxurious obligations. Iran’s economic conditions have become so dire that even some officials are warning of possible revolt and the collapse of the Islamic Republic.

The Iranian regime, in short, is in survival mode and—to maintain its power as its oil exports continue to decline—in desperate need of cash.

Before the Trump administration reimposed sanctions on Tehran, Iran was exporting more than two million barrels of oil a day. According to the latest reports, Iran’s oil export is now around 70,000 barrels a day. Iran’s currency, the rial, has also been rapidly losing its value.

From the perspective of Iran’s leadership, however, a significant amount of this pressure can be lifted if Biden wins the 2020 presidential elections. Iran’s state-owned newspapers and politicians are, in fact, deliriously optimistic about Biden defeating [US President Donald] Trump in the November elections. The headline in the newspaper Mardom Salari on July 20 read, “Biden Getting More Popular at Time of Trump’s Decline.”

If the former vice president wins the 2020 presidential elections, he can indeed solve many of the mullahs‘ problems. The Democrat Party’s platform has already committed itself to returning to the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] nuclear deal, which enables Iran in a few years to have an unlimited nuclear capability, and which President Trump abandoned decisively.

The change in administration in the United States would mean that all sanctions will be lifted and billions of dollars would once again be flowing into the treasury of Iran’s regime. It would be capable of deploying the extra revenues once again to fan the embers of unrest in the Middle East. This expansiveness would include funneling some of these new-found revenues into the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to enlarge the regime’s influence and military stranglehold across the Middle East and Latin America, especially in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon and Venezuela.

A regime change in America would be seen as great news for Iran’s beneficiaries as well, especially Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who is also currently facing significant economic pressure. Assad was saved by the JCPOA nuclear deal, which, incidentally, Iran never signed. He [Assad] had been on the verge of bowing out. When Iran ramped up its investment in Syria by spending between [US] $6 to $35 billion a year to keep its staunchest regional ally in power, Assad received a welcome dose of adrenaline.

The sanctions have so far imposed enough pressure on the Iranian government that its leaders have been forced to cut funding even to its militias, allies and terror groups. The regime’s militants are reportedly not getting their salaries or benefits, making it difficult for them to continue fighting on behalf of Tehran. “The golden days are gone,” one Iranian-backed militia fighter in Syria told the New York Times, “and will never return. Iran does not have enough money to give us.”

Those “golden days” can come back, all the same, if Biden becomes president. Iran will once again be able to strengthen its Shiite armies and their proxies: Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen and the conglomerate of roughly 40 Iraqi Shiite groups under the banner of the Popular Mobilization Forces.

It is important to note that without Iran’s financial and military assistance, many militia and terror groups could not survive. As Hezbollah’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, admitted:

“We are open about the fact that Hezbollah’s budget, its income, its expenses, everything it eats and drinks, its weapons and rockets, are from the Islamic Republic of Iran. As long as Iran has money, we have money…Just as we receive the rockets that we use to threaten Israel, we are receiving our money. No law will prevent us from receiving it.”

From the perspective of the ruling clerics of Iran, when Biden becomes president and returns to the nuclear deal, this infusion of cash would enable them to suppress domestic opposition even more powerfully and forcefully. It would also enable them to pay their radical loyalists, to advance the regime’s revolutionary ideals and to ensure the hold on power of the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The ruling mullahs of Iran are excited. They are convinced that a new US president, like his previous boss, former President Barack Obama, will throw them the lifeline so badly needed for their survival, their hold on power and their ability to advance their nuclear and other imperialist plans—in Venezuela against the United States, and in the Middle East.

Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is a business strategist and advisor, Harvard-educated scholar, political scientist, board member of Harvard International Review, and president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He has authored several books on Islam and US foreign policy. He can be reached at Dr.Rafizadeh@Post.Harvard.Edu

Source: (This article was originally published by the Gatestone Institute on July 28, 2020. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Cry out to God for His intervention in America’s upcoming election, beseeching Him to put in office those that will protect the Judeo–Christian values that America shares with Israel and the relationship between the two countries that is so critical to the survival of both.

Scripture

Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, for wisdom and might are His. And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding.


- Daniel 2:20–21

Palestinians Slate Jewish History in Jerusalem as “Fabricated,” “Forged”

by Itamar Marcus

The PA asserts that the Jewish Temple is nothing but a myth. Pictured: the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

Thursday, 6 August 2020 | The Palestinians, hoping to create a state on land in which they have no national or political ancient history, feel threatened by the more than 3,000 years of Jewish history which is thoroughly documented. Thousands of archaeological finds, including coins, stamps, Hebrew inscriptions and more—many of which go back to the First Temple period—all are testimony to the thriving Jewish history in the land.

Accordingly, denial of Jewish history in the land of Israel and especially in Jerusalem is a central component of the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) national–political ideology. It is expressed regularly by PA leader Mahmoud Abbas himself as well as other senior PA officials.

Recently, the PA produced a TV filler of Abbas again denying Israel’s history in Jerusalem saying Palestinians must “confront the [Israeli] plots that are being woven against it to forge its identity and to change its character.” While Abbas’ voice is heard, images of Jews visiting the Temple Mount are shown.

The PA is constantly reinforcing the libel that Jews have no history in the land of Israel in general, and in Jerusalem in particular. To explain the thousands of artifacts that are witness to the rich Jewish history, the PA therefore claims that Israel is inventing this history, using various means, including the “fabricating and planting” of fake graves to claim a Jewish presence.

In a TV program about a Palestinian campaign against Israel establishing a public park in the Hinnom Valley south of the Old City of Jerusalem, the PA TV host alleged that Israel has planted fake graves “to prove an ancient Israeli and Jewish presence.” In fact, the earliest Jewish graves at the site date back to the First Temple period nearly 3,000 years ago.

Similarly, the PA TV host of a program on religious rulings stated that Israel is “the greatest liar,” one that “steals the Palestinian heritage.” This statement was confirmed by the top religious official in the PA, the Supreme Fatwa Council Chairman and PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein, who said Israel pretends it has a heritage in the land, while it is actually “a lie, a forgery and a libel.”

Palestinian Media Watch has exposed that Abbas for years has been promoting the lie that Jews have no history in Jerusalem, claiming it a “delusional myth.”

The attempt to convince their people that Jews have no history in the land is not new but goes back to the beginning of the PA period. A few years ago, official PA TV summed up the PA fabrications about Jewish history in Jerusalem:

“The story of the Temple is nothing but a collection of legends and myths for political reasons. They [Jews] have set Palestine and Jerusalem as their goal, and have used the myths in the service of their declared goals of occupation and imperialism. In the spirit of the delusions and legends, they try to get rid of the Al-Aqsa [Mosque] and establish their so-called ‘Temple’—the greatest crime and forgery in history.”

Source: (Excerpt of an article originally published by Palestinian Media Watch on July 29, 2020. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Daniel Johnson/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Beseech the Lord that the PA’s vicious attempts to erase Israel from the pages of history and replace her with a fabricated narrative that brings with it hate and oppression will be unsuccessful. Pray that their outrageous dishonesty will be exposed as the vile anti-Semitism that it is.

Scripture

“And like their bow they have bent their tongues for lies. They are not valiant for the truth on the earth. For they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not know Me,” says the LORD.


- Jeremiah 9:3

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