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Friday, April 22, 2022

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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.

Rocket Attack from Gaza after Four Months of Quiet

by Kate Norman

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Tuesday, 19 April 2022 | Terrorists in the Gaza Strip fired a rocket into Israel last night, breaking over four months of silence and prompting retaliatory strikes by the Israeli military. No casualties were reported on either side.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) reported around 8:30 last night that terrorists fired a rocket into Israel, which was intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.

No damage or casualties resulted from the rocket launch, but Israel nonetheless takes any cross-border attacks seriously.

Just after 2:30 a.m., the Israeli military announced that it struck a weapons manufacturing site in Gaza belonging to Hamas, the Iran-backed terror organization in control of the Gaza Strip.

The rocket, however, was actually attributed to Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the second largest terror organization in Gaza. PIJ was credited by Palestinian media for last night’s launch, according to Israeli Ynetnews and Kan news.

Regardless of who fired the rocket, Israel holds one entity responsible.

“The terrorist organization Hamas is responsible for all terror activity emanating from the Gaza Strip,” the IDF tweeted along with the announcement of its overnight strike.

Even when Hamas is not behind rocket launches toward Israel, it is believed that the group at the very least gives behind-the-scenes green lights for PIJ and other terrorists to fire toward Israel at will. Therefore, Israel holds Hamas responsible for all terror activity.

Hamas, however, reportedly told Israel via Egyptian mediators that it was not behind last night’s rocket, the Times of Israel reported, citing Army Radio.

Both Israel and Hamas likely fear a return to last year’s Guardian of the Walls, a volatile 11-day war in May in which terrorists in Gaza fired more than 4,300 rockets toward Israel, prompting a stream of retaliatory Israeli strikes in the Strip.

Yesterday’s rocket set off sirens in two Israeli communities near the border with Gaza, breaking a four-month period of calm in Israel’s south that has held since January 1 this year. Two rockets then were fired toward Tel Aviv, but fell short and landed in the sea, causing no damage.

Then too, the Israeli military responded with strikes targeting Hamas sites in the Gaza Strip.

This latest skirmish with Gaza is another symptom of the tension brewing across the Jewish state amid the overlap of the Passover, Ramadan and Easter holidays.

As the Jewish people are commemorating their Exodus from slavery in Egypt millennia ago, Muslims are also celebrating Ramadan, a month-long holiday marked by fasting from sunrise to sunset, reading the Koran, frequent prayer and self-restraint.

The last quality is often lacking, however, during Ramadan in Israel. In fact, the holiday is often marked by increase violence, tension, rioting and terror attacks.

This year is no different, at the weekend saw clashes on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City. The site where the first and second temples once stood, it is the holiest site in Judaism. Now where the Al-Aqsa Mosque stands, it is the third holiest site in Islam.

Now it serves as the flashpoint of religious tension in Israel. This past weekend, Arab rioters threw stones and fireworks at Israeli security forces stationed at the Temple Mount, leading to hundreds of injuries of both Arabs and Israeli security forces.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, April 19, 2022)

Photo Credit: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Kobi Gideon/GPO/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord to calm the situation before it escalates into an incessant rain of rockets on civilian populations as it has so many times in the past. Bring the brave men, women and children who choose to live on Israel’s southern border before the Lord, praying for physical and emotional protection.

Scripture

Blessed be the LORD, who has not given us as prey to their teeth. Our soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.


- Psalm 124:6–8

Islamic State Calls on Followers to Murder More Israelis

by Kate Norman

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Footage of a terror attack in Bnei Brak last month

Monday, 18 April 2022 | Amid a tense time in the Holy Land following a spate of terror attacks and religious turmoil sparked by the overlap of the holidays of Passover, Ramadan and Easter, the Islamic State yesterday called for more Jewish blood.

The Islamic State’s new spokesman, Abu-Omar al-Muhajjir, cried out for the terrorist group’s followers to launch a new “global offensive” to avenge their late leader, Abu Ibrahim al-Qurayshi, the Times of Israel reported. The former jihadist chief blew himself up last year in Syria when his capture by United States forces was imminent.

His successor yesterday urged Islamic State followers to fight all the “heathen states,” adding that “Allah will answer and punish them at your hands,” the Times of Israel reported.

This was al-Muhajjir’s address for Ramadan, the month-long Islamic holiday marked by fasting from sunrise to sunset, reading the Koran and gathering at the mosque several times a day for prayer.

Though the holiday is supposed to be marked by a time of self-restraint, Ramadan often is marked by clashes and tension in Israel, and this year has been no different.

The first few weeks of Ramadan have already seen rioting, particularly in Jerusalem’s Old City, with the flashpoint being the Temple Mount. The site where Israel’s first and second temples once stood, making it the holiest site in Judaism, is also the site where the Al-Aqsa Mosque currently stands, the third holiest site in Islam. Thus, it is Jerusalem’s flashpoint for religious tension.

In addition to rioting on the Temple Mount that has already led to clashes, rock-throwing and subsequent arrests by the Israeli Police, the last month has been one of Israel’s bloodiest in recent years amid a wave of terror attacks that has left 14 people dead.

Of the four terror attacks, the first two were committed by terrorists believed to have ties to the Islamic State.

On March 22, a lone terrorist killed four people and injured two more in a car-ramming and stabbing attack in Beersheva. The terrorist—an Arab Israeli—was a known Islamic State supporter and had even served four years in prison for his ties to the terrorist group.

A few days later on March 27, two terrorists carried out a shooting attack near Haifa and murdered two 19-yar-old Israeli Border Police officers. They too were Arab Israelis with ties to the terrorist group. In fact, the Islamic State was quick to claim credit for the attack.

The Islamic State spokesman praised the attacks in a voice message last night.

“These acts caused pain to the Jews and showed the world that there is a difference between those who fight and die for Allah and those who fight for empty political slogans,” al-Muhajjir said, as quoted by Ynetnews.

The Islamist spokesman also disparaged “secular terrorists” of Fatah, the leading secular Palestinian political party, as well as the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, both of whom al-Muhajjir pointed out are fighting for land and sovereign Palestinian statehood rather than fighting for “Allah and religion,” as he said the terrorists did last month in the two attacks in Israel.

In fact, al-Muhajjir belittled the entire Palestinian uprising, asserting that Jerusalem will only be emptied of Jewish people when the Islamic Caliphate is reinstated and the world is shackled under the reign of Islamic law.

“Modern Muslim politicians trying to liberate Jerusalem are nothing more than puppets in the hand of Israel and the West,” he asserted.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, April 18, 2022)

Photo Credit: i24NEWS English/YouTube.com

Prayer Focus
Pray that the Lord will stop up the ears of Islamic State operatives and that nobody will answer al-Muhajjir’s clarion call to terror. Also ask Him to imbue Israel’s security forces with supernatural intelligence to thwart any terror attacks before they can be executed.

Scripture

My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me. But those who seek my life, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth. They shall fall by the sword; they shall be a portion for jackals…But the mouth of those who speak lies shall be stopped.


- Psalm 63:8–10, 11b

Game-changer: Israel Concludes Successful Trial of Laser Interception System

by JNS

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Israel concludes its first successful trial of ground-based laser interception system 4.

Friday, 15 April 2022 | Israel’s Ministry of Defense and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems announced the completion on Thursday of a groundbreaking series of tests using a high-powered, ground-based laser to intercept threats in the air.

During the trials, the laser shot down unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs], mortars, rockets and anti-tank missiles.

The system’s development plan is led by the Defense Ministry’s Research and Development Division in the Ministry’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development. Rafael is the main developer in cooperation with Elbit Systems.

“About a month ago, we announced a full-scale development order to develop and produce a high-power laser defense system. Today marks the first time that a high-power, Israeli-made laser system successfully intercepted various targets, constituting a breakthrough on a global scale,” said Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz.

“This is thanks to Israeli innovation, the defense establishment and the industries that provide security for Israeli citizens,” he said. “Our goal is to achieve operational status as soon as possible, which will enable an efficient, inexpensive and innovative means of defense. This system will save lives and will also allow operational flexibility.”

Israel is one of the first countries in the world to successfully develop high-power laser technology at an operational standard, stated the Defense Ministry, adding that it will complement the Iron Dome and integrate into Israel’s multitiered air defense array.

Brig.–Gen. Yaniv Rotem, head of Research and Development at the Directorate for Defense Research and Development, said, “This is the first time we’ve succeeded in intercepting mortars, rockets, UAVs and anti-tank missiles from such challenging ranges and time intervals. The laser is a game-changer, thanks to its easily operated system and significant economic advantages.”

The next step, he noted, “is to continue the development and initial system deployment within Israel. Our plan is to station multiple laser transmitters along Israel’s borders throughout the next decade. We will continue to simultaneously develop advanced capabilities, including the aerial laser.”

Rafael CEO Maj.–Gen. (res.) Yoav Har-Even said: “I am confident that this technological breakthrough will lead to future capabilities in directed energy, including the high-power laser system. This achievement is the result of Rafael employees’ tireless work contributing to Israel’s security while preserving and development.”

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on April 14, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems/JNS.org

Prayer Focus
Rejoice before the Lord for blessing Israel with the skill, ingenuity and ability to develop yet another groundbreaking defense system to protect Israelis against the onslaught of their many enemies and certainly safe many lives. At the same time, pray that Israel will not look to man or inventions for its protection, but rather put their trust in the Lord.

Scripture

Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; “For YAH, the LORD, is my strength and song; He also has become my salvation.”


- Isaiah 12:2

Israel Balancing Security and Religious Freedom While Facing Riots in Holy City

by Joshua Spurlock ~ the Mideast Update

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Aftermath of riots on the Temple Mount

Monday, 18 April 2022 | Amidst riotous violence in Jerusalem and the confluence of Passover, Easter and Ramadan in the same weekend, Israel is having to juggle more than just the interests of the three major religions. They are also working to balance security with religious freedom in a city holy to all three faiths.

That challenge was highlighted in Palestinian rock-throwing attacks on Israeli buses that injured civilians on Sunday and was central to discussions between Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and security officials that same day. Bennett “emphasized that efforts must continue to enable members of all faiths to celebrate their holidays in Jerusalem. He also stressed that offenders who violate the public order and try to harm the holiday routine must be dealt with,” according to a summary of the meeting published by his office.

In the wake of the rock assault on the buses, Bennett also ordered increased security for buses going to the Western Wall—a central holy site to Judaism—and the Old City, which also houses sites holy to Christianity and Islam. Per the press statement, the Palestinian attacks on the buses led to the hospitalization of a “number of passengers.”

According to the Israel Police Twitter feed, translated from Hebrew by Google, the incidents involved stones being thrown at buses traveling near the Old City. Per the post, “several buses were damaged” and four persons were arrested for the attacks on Sunday morning.

The violence came as the Israel Police reported more riots on the Temple Mount and Jerusalem’s Old City on Sunday, including the use of rock attacks and fireworks. Jerusalem District Commander Superintendent Doron Turgeman was quoted in a series of Twitter posts by the Israel Police, as translated by Google, noting some of the rioting occurred inside a mosque and “those rioters are harming, first of all, a large crowd of worshipers who come to the Temple Mount. Like last Friday, this morning the rioters damaged the mosque from the inside while firing fireworks.”

Turgeman continued: “We have acted, and will continue to do, to allow visits to the place while maintaining public order and freedom of worship. At the same time, we will act with determination and zero tolerance against rioters and lawbreakers who try to harm civilians or police in the holy places and elsewhere.”

The Israel Police, as of midday Sunday, said that 18 persons had been arrested for acts of violence since that morning.

Sunday’s conflict followed a contentious Friday on the Temple Mount—home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third-holiest site—in which Palestinian rioters clashed with Israeli security forces, leading to hundreds arrested. The Palestinian Red Crescent [medical service] said on Twitter that over 150 were injured. Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) indicated on Twitter that Friday’s violence was premeditated by Palestinians seeking conflict.

“Dozens of masked men carrying Hamas and PA [Palestinian Authority] flags marched into Al-Aqsa mosque in the early morning hours, chanting inciting messages and setting off fireworks. The crowd collected stones and large rocks, which were then hurled in the direction of the Mugrabi Gate,” tweeted the MFA, which noted that in response, police “were forced to enter the grounds to disperse the crowd and remove the stones and rocks, in order to prevent further violence.”

However, while the violence rocked the holy site on Friday morning, that afternoon was different, per follow-up tweets by the MFA.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry pointed out in one Twitter post that 26,000 persons were on the Al-Aqsa grounds after the riots had been dispersed, and another tweet noted thousands more Muslim worshippers were praying there on Saturday “alongside Jewish visitors to the compound.”

Said the MFA post, “Israel will not allow a handful of violent rioters to desecrate the site, and will ensure freedom of worship at Jerusalem’s holy places.”

Against that delicate balance of freedom and security, Bennett, in his comments, emphasized that protecting civilians is crucial—even as Israel also seeks to de-escalate tensions.

“The main goal is to ensure security for the citizens of Israel throughout the country. The security forces are continuing to receive a free hand from the political echelon for any measure to ensure security for the citizens of Israel,” said Bennett in his comments on Sunday.

“We are working to calm things down on the one hand and are taking vigorous action against violent individuals on the other. The security forces are ready for any scenario.”

Source: (This article was originally published by the Mideast Update on April 17, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today.)

Photo Credit: Autumn Groat/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Bring this precarious situation and the simmering tensions during the overlap of Passover, Easter and Ramadan before the Lord. Praise Him for Israel’s integrity as it remains committed to freedom for all to worship in the Old City—and ensure the safety of all worshipers. Pray for the vigilance and protection of the brave young men and women stationed in this flashpoint area to maintain peace and security.

Scripture

You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, You still them.


- Psalm 89:9

Iran Assembles ‘Building Blocks for Long-range Ballistic Missiles,’ Says Israeli Space Expert

by Yaakov Lappin ~ JNS

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Iranian missiles on display (illustrative)

Tuesday, 19 April 2022 | Iran is gradually assembling the building blocks necessary to construct ballistic missiles with very long ranges, an Israeli missile and space expert has said, adding that [the] Islamic Republic’s elite military Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) “can reach space.”

Iran’s space program uses ballistic-missile technology to launch spy satellites into orbit around the earth. It is seen by observers as a guise for the development of future intercontinental Iranian ballistic missiles, which could threaten Europe in the first stage and potentially North America in later development stages.

Tal Inbar, a leading Israeli missile and space expert, told JNS in recent days that despite the existence of an Iranian civilian space program, which operates alongside a space division run by the IRGC (first unveiled in 2020), the IRGC is the entity producing all of the components for both space programs.

Inbar, a former director of the UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] Research Center at Israel’s Fisher Institute for Air and Space Strategic Studies, and co-founder of the Ilan Ramon Space Conference, said “when one examines what the IRGC is doing, it is possible to see the various technologies being developed for long-range missiles, such as solid propellant. They have the building blocks to build an intercontinental ballistic missile.”

On March 8, the IRGC launched the Noor 2 military satellite into orbit, according to Iranian state media.

Noor (meaning “light” in Persian) 2 is orbiting at an altitude of 500 kilometers (311 mi.), Reuters cited Iranian media as saying. Noor 1, Iran’s first military satellite, was launched in April 2020, at an orbit of 425 kilometers (265 mi.) above the Earth.

The space commander of IRGC’s Aerospace Force, Ali Jafarabadi, said after the launch of Noor 2 that Iran will send a series of military satellites into orbit over the coming years, saying, “The space program of the country, of which we are a part, is to stabilize various scientific, research and defense satellites in low-earth orbit and then reach orbit of 36,000 kilometers [22,370 mi.] above land.”

Reuters noted that the United States military “says the same long-range ballistic technology used to put satellites into orbit could also allow Tehran to launch longer-range weapons, possibly including nuclear warheads.”

A three-staged carrier, dubbed Qased (“messenger”), using both liquid and solid fuel, launched Noor 2 into space from the Shahroud space port in Northern Iran.

“Until Noor 1, there was no official declaration by Iran that the IRGC has a space division,” said Inbar. “The IRGC, which is listed as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the US, has a space division. I’m not aware of other terror organizations that can reach space,” he added.

Addressing the connection between Iran’s space launchers and its missile program, Inbar assessed that the long-range technology will not “immediately result in the production of missiles with warheads, but this isn’t very far away either.”

Iran’s Shahab 3 ballistic missile, which has variants that can reach 2,000 kilometers (1,242 mi.), capable of hitting Israel, received additional stages in order to extend its ranges, noted Inbar.

“At the end of the day, all missiles, including space launchers, are built by Iran’s military industries, and all of the industries belong to the IRGC,” he said. “So even if the Iranian space agency says it is civilian, it goes to the IRGC for components and approval. The connection was always there to begin with. It is of interest that the Iranians officially declared the existence of a separate IRGC space agency.”

As of now, there are “no limitations” on Iran’s missile and space programs, warned Inbar.

‘Five Failed Launches in a Row’

The United States has pursued a mixed policy of sanctions when it comes to Iranian missile developers.

On March 30, the US Department of the Treasury sanctioned what it said was “an Iran-based procurement agent and his network of companies that procured ballistic-missile propellant-related materials for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Research and Self Sufficiency Jihad Organization (IRGC RSSJO), the unit responsible for the research and development of ballistic missiles, as well as Iran’s Parchin Chemical Industries (PCI), an element of Iran’s Defense Industries Organization (DIO).”

In 2021, the US Treasury Department delisted Iranian entities that had been previously sanctioned by the Trump administration for being active in Iran’s ballistic-missile program.

In 2019, America placed sanctions on the Iranian civilian space agency and two related research organizations, accusing Tehran of using the entities to advance its ballistic-missile program.

“Perhaps more sanctions will be placed in the future. Of course, Iran can attempt to claim that its development of long-range missile technology is for a legitimate civilian space program,” said Inbar.

As for the satellites themselves, Inbar said their capability is highly limited at this time. Still, he cautioned, if Iran directs further budgets and conducts determined research and development, it can improve in this sector as well.

In December, an Iranian attempt to launch three payloads into orbit failed after the rocket was unable to reach the required speed, Reuters cited an Iranian defense ministry spokesman as saying. “There have been five failed launches in a row for the Simorgh program, another satellite-carrying rocket. A separate fire at the Imam Khomeini Spaceport in February 2019 also killed three researchers, authorities said at the time,” said the report.

“The more that Iran develops long-range missiles, the easier the case of Israel, Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates gets when presented to the world,” said Inbar. “These missiles can target Europe, and later beyond, as their range is extended.”

Source: (Excerpt from an article originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on April 18, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Saeediex/Shutterstock/JNS.org

Prayer Focus
Beseech the Lord to thwart Iranian efforts to construct the means to sow large-scale destruction—in Israel and around the world. Pray that He not allow Tehran to mislead the international community as to its true intensions, and ask Him to shine a light on Iran’s step-by-step progress to develop long-range weapons of mass destruction.

Scripture

For evildoers shall be cut off; but those who wait on the LORD, they shall inherit the earth…The wicked plots against the just, and gnashes at him with his teeth. The Lord laughs at him, for He sees that his day is coming.


- Psalm 37:9, 12–13

Second Alleged Israeli Air Strike in a Week in Syria

by Kate Norman

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Damascus, Syria

Friday, 15 April 2022 | For the second time this week, Israeli jets reportedly struck military targets in Syria, according to state-affiliated Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA). The planes struck in the countryside around the Syrian capital of Damascus at around 11:30 p.m. yesterday, SANA reported, causing material damage but no reported casualties.

The targets reportedly included sites southwest of Damascus as well as the Scientific Studies and Research Center, which lies northwest of Damascus, the Jerusalem Post reported, citing Arabic media.

This is not the first time the research center has been the target of an alleged Israeli strike, the Jerusalem Post noted. The most recent strike there took place in February.

Israel, as usual, did not comment on its involvement in the strikes. The Jewish state does not address its involvement in cross-border strikes unless they are in response to a direct attack.

Israeli officials have acknowledged, however, that the Israeli military has conducted hundreds of strikes in Syria over the past few years in order to thwart Iran’s attempts to entrench itself and strengthen its proxies in the region.

The last alleged Israeli strike took place last Saturday afternoon, SANA reported, when planes approached from Lebanon and targeted sites near Masyaf in western Syria. Then too, only material damage was reported, according to SANA, with no casualties.

The targets in the Masyaf strikes included a defense factory, a scientific studies and research center and a Syrian army complex, according to satellite imagery from an independent firm.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, April 15, 2022)

Photo Credit: © Vyacheslav Argenberg / http://www.vascoplanet.com/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: wikimedia.org

Prayer Focus
Continue to bring the situation on Israel’s northern border before the Lord. Pray that Iran and its terror proxy Hezbollah, both of whom seek to use war-torn Syria as front on the Jewish state doorstep, will be exposed and rooted out like the brood of vipers they are.

Scripture

The house of the wicked will be overthrown, but the tent of the upright will flourish.


- Proverbs 14:11

Landmark Israeli Court Ruling Holds Palestinian Authority Liable for Terror Funding Scheme

by Israel Kasnett ~ JNS

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View of the Supreme Court in Jerusalem before a court hearing on the denial of citizenship for two Arab Israelis who carried out terrorist attacks on February 8, 2022.

Friday, 15 April 2022 | In a groundbreaking decision, the Israeli Supreme Court on Sunday ruled that Israeli victims of terrorism and their families can now sue the Palestinian Authority [PA] for damages.

This decision is groundbreaking because it removes the onus from the victim to prove that the PA was involved. The fact that the PA pays a salary to the terrorist is enough to prove that it is responsible.

Director of legal strategies at Palestinian Media Watch Maurice Hirsch told JNS what the court’s decision says is that the PA payments to terrorists “are so unique in their nature that you have a systematic entrenched-in-law system for paying a reward to terrorists.”

Hirsch explained that this system gives rise to a unique legal doctrine called retrospective ratification.

Retrospective ratification can best be explained as when someone performs an action and a third party comes along and says, “I take responsibility for that action.”

In this case, a terrorist carries out an attack and the PA takes responsibility for the attack by paying the terrorist. The PA has “adopted” the action of the terrorist and is thereby responsible for the actions of the terrorist.

The Supreme Court therefore decided that the PA payment system is so singular in its nature that it is appropriate to invoke the doctrine of retrospective ratification.

To discourage PA payments to terrorists and their families, in 2018, Israel passed what became known as the anti-“Pay-for-Slay” law. It says that the state must deduct and freeze the amount of money that the PA pays terrorists and their families from the tax revenue that Israel gives the PA.

Israel collects these funds on behalf of the PA under the terms of the 1994 Paris Agreements, part of the Oslo Accords.

Hirsch also explained that victims of terrorism have always been able to sue the PA for damages, but they had to find a way to connect the PA to the incident in which their loved one was killed or injured.

“What the new decision says is that even in the absence of any other means of connecting the PA to the terror attacks, the payment system provides that basis,” he said.

Hirsch lauded the court’s decision and said terror victims now have a better chance since “the ability to make good on decisions against the PA is relatively [sound].”

“The question until now has been: What do you do with judgments against individual terrorists?” he said. “This decision opens the door to find the PA responsible, and there is [a higher] chance to get money from the PA via the taxes” that Israel transfers.

However, Hirsch said, this type of application of the doctrine of retrospective ratification is so distinctive that they did not even find previous such cases.

“This opens the door for another round of legal discussion because it is so innovative in its content,” he said. “It is likely the PA will put in a request for an additional hearing, and there is a good chance the Supreme Court will allow that hearing to take place, most likely with an expanded panel of judges.”

‘Filing Civil Lawsuits against Terrorists’

Together with this new court ruling, there are additional angles to fighting terrorism and holding terrorists responsible.

Israeli State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman said on Tuesday that “there is one simple and effective tool that the State of Israel does not use in the fight against terrorism: filing civil lawsuits against terrorists.”

Englman said it doesn’t matter whether the terrorists are residents of the State of Israel or Palestinians.

“In such a case, it can be done by offsetting funds from the Palestinian Authority,” he said. “Terrorists need to understand that terrorism is not profitable, even economically.”

According to Englman, Israel compensates victims of terrorism. In 2019, the National Insurance Institute paid NIS 540 million ([US]$169 million) to victims. But in 2018–19, the state did not file civil lawsuits against the terrorists at all.

Englman called on Minister of Justice Gideon Sa’ar and Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara to exercise the tools of civil enforcement.

“It should be emphasized that this does not require changes in legislation,” he said. “You just have to decide that you are enforcing and enforce. This is essential for both justice and the war on terror.”

‘Compensate the Victims to Some Extent’

In another example of how Israel can fight terrorism through deterrence, on Sunday the government approved the establishment of a committee to examine removing state benefits such as pensions from the families of Israeli citizens who committed acts of terror.

The current wave of terror that Israel is experiencing began in Beersheva on March 22, followed by attacks in Hadera on March 27, Bnei Brak on March 29 and Tel Aviv on April 7.

The Beersheva attack, in which four Israeli civilians were murdered in a combined car-ramming and knife attack, was carried out by an Israeli Bedouin from the town of Houra who was shot dead by armed civilians. The Hadera attack, in which two Israeli Border Police officers were murdered, was carried out by two terrorists from the northern Arab Israeli city of Umm el-Fahm. They were subsequently shot dead by members of a Border Police unit who were nearby.

If the committee findings eventually become a law, the families of these Israeli terrorists will lose all state benefits.

According to Yossi Kuperwasser of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, “the PA law, according to which it pays salaries to terrorists, turns the PA into a terror entity.”

“This means that the PA can be held accountable for all terror attacks and should compensate the victims to some extent,” he told JNS.

In May 2020, the Jerusalem District Court placed a lien on NIS 450 million (nearly [US] $140 million) in PA tax revenues after ruling against the authority in several lawsuits, charging it with responsibility for numerous terror attacks.

Israel is not alone in its position that the PA rewards terrorists and encourages terrorism.

In December 2019, the International Criminal Court published its Office of the Prosecutor Report in which it mentioned, for the first time, that the PA could be guilty of war crimes over payments to terrorists.

Israel has also worked together with the United States to pressure the PA to stop the payments to terrorists. The Taylor Force Act and the Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act (ATCA) prohibit funding to entities that fund terrorism.

ATCA of 2018, and the Promoting Security and Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act (PSJVTA) of 2019, are two amendments to the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) that have significant implications on American aid to the Palestinians and US courts’ ability to exercise jurisdiction over Palestinian entities.

PSJVTA seeks to force the PA to pay damages to American terror victims and their families, whether or not the PA receives US aid.

According to Kuperwasser, while the United States does put pressure on the PA to stop paying salaries to terrorists and their families, “at the same time [the Biden administration] bypasses the Taylor Force Act and provides generous economic assistance to the Palestinians, so the PA does not have an incentive to stop paying the terrorists.”

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on April 14, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Credit: Flash90/JNS.org

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord for this groundbreaking ruling that recognizes the PA’s abhorrent practice of rewarding terrorists for their bloody work for what it is: incitement to murder. Pray that the consequences that the PA will face because of this decision will make the Palestinian leadership reconsider this payment system. Also pray that the innocent victims of terror will finally have some sense of justification for the horror inflicted on them.

Scripture

O LORD God, to whom vengeance belongs—O God, to whom vengeance belongs, shine forth! Rise up, O Judge of the earth; render punishment to the proud. LORD, how long will the wicked, how long will the wicked triumph?


- Psalm 94:1–3

In Historic First, UAE to Participate in Israel’s Independence Day Flyby

by Daniel Salami ~ Ynetnews

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The UEA’s Etihad Airways will take part in Israel’s 74th Independence day flyby (illustrative).

Tuesday, 19 April 2022 | For the first time in history, the United Arab Emirates [UAE] will take part in Israel’s 74th Independence Day civilian flyby, it was announced Sunday.

Israel Air Line Pilots Association, which was behind the initiative, said all the Israeli airlines and two UAE companies will take part in the May 5 flyby.

The Israeli airlines that will take part in the flyby include El-AL, Israir Airlines, Arkia, CAL Cargo Air Lines, and Ayit Aviation and Tourism. The Emirati airlines include Etihad Airways and Wizz Air Abu Dhabi.

The civilian planes will join the flyby at 12:45 p.m., after the Israeli Air Force will finish its traditional aerial exhibition.

The flyby [is] set to stretch along the coast of Israel from north to south, from Acre to Ashdod, and will return for another flight from west to east. The flyby is expected to be conducted at a very low altitude of only 1,000 feet [305 m.], giving Israelis the chance for a close glance at the event.

The flyby is due to be completed by 1:20 p.m. The final component of the flyby will be a three-plane structure consisting of a jumbo CAL jet with two Embraer E-Jet family aircraft.

Head of the Israel Air Line Pilots Association Captain Midan Bar said: “First and foremost, it is a flyby of pilots, which proves that regional cooperation is practical, and not just an announcement.

“I welcome the Gulf state’s pilots who will come to participate in our flyby of peace to increase our cooperation. Furthermore, this flyby points unequivocally to the strength of Israeli civilian aviation. The companies that have been forced to deal with COVID-19 have now returned to full activity, even more than before. The range of participating aircrafts points to the central role the Israeli aviation plays in the world, and its enormous potential.”

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on April 17, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Alan Wilson/commons.wikimedia.ogg

Photo License: wikimedia.org

Prayer Focus
Bless the Lord for yet another beautiful outcome of the Abraham Accords showcasing the flourishing relations between Israel—the Jewish state, and the UAE—an Arab nation. Ask the Lord to continue underscoring the benefits of a relationship with Israel within the Arab world so that many more nations will follow in the UAE’s footsteps to befriend Israel.

Scripture

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor.


- Ecclesiastes 4:9