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Friday, February 10, 2023

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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.

Israel Continues Aid Efforts in Turkey Following Deadly Earthquake

by Kate Norman

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Israeli search and rescue personnel at the scene of a devastating earthquake (illustrative)

Thursday, 9 February 2023 | Israel is continuing its aid efforts in Turkey after a devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake rocked that country as well as Syria early Monday morning, with over 15,000 reported dead so far.

Israel responded by deploying a search and rescue team on Tuesday as well as dispatching 15 cargo planes full of emergency responders and equipment to establish a field hospital.

On Monday, Israel deployed a 150-strong search and rescue team consisting of experienced Home Front Command reservists and Fire and Rescue Service officials. As of the latest report, the team had rescued 17 people from the rubble, the Times of Israel reported, including a two-year-old boy, a 23-year-old woman, a 12-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl.

Each rescue is painstaking, as the teams must work carefully to locate and extract survivors without the debris caving in further.

Yesterday afternoon, 15 Israeli Air Force [IAF] cargo planes loaded with hundreds of tons of equipment landed in Turkey along with a team of 230 people to establish a field hospital. The team consists of medical personnel and more search and rescue experts.

“We are very proud to be on the aiding side and to assist the Turkish nation in its difficult hour,” Brig. Gen. Gilad Keinan, commander of southern Israel’s Nevatim air base, as quoted by the Times of Israel. “This action reflects the IDF’s [Israel Defense Forces’] values and Israel’s values.”

As rescue teams work round the clock to find and extract survivors from the debris, the cold, wintery conditions and the ticking clock means the death count will inevitably rise.

People on the ground in Turkey have described the scene as hell on earth: constant wailing piercing the frigid air as people discover more dead and carnage; homes and entire neighborhoods wiped out; and rescue workers and survivors desperately working to race the clock and save as many survivors as possible.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to the commander of Israel’s rescue mission in Turkey yesterday on the phone.

‘You are carrying out a humanitarian mission of the highest order and are bringing much honor to us and the State of Israel and are showing Israel’s true face to the world,” Netanyahu told Col. (res.) Golan Vach, in a statement published by the prime minister’s office. “Please convey my greetings to all members of the mission. Do what you can to save lives and be careful.”

Vach told Netanyahu that the Israeli rescue team is “trying to make every effort to save lives” and that their mission has been successful thanks to the fact that they arrived in Turkey so quickly.

Whenever a natural disaster strikes, Israel is always among the first to respond and offer help as part of a major tenet of the Jewish faith: tikkun olam, or “repairing the world.” This includes offering help to nations who do not recognize the State of Israel.

Netanyahu said in a statement on Monday that Syria, who was also severely hit by the earthquake, reached out for help from the Jewish state. The prime minister said that Israel will indeed help her neighbor to the north by sending tents, blankets and medicine. However, Syrian officials later denied that their country had requested aid from the Jewish state.

As the clock continues ticking and time runs out for the remaining survivors and the rescue teams braving the cold conditions to save as many as possible, Israel’s Foreign Ministry is reportedly considering sending another plane full of humanitarian aid items to help in the fight for life.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, February 9, 2023)

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

Photo License: flickr

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord for the victims of this horrible disaster. Pray that many more people will be found and rescued and pray for the families of those who have lost their lives. Thank the Lord that Israel is able to bring their expertise as well as medical and humanitarian aid to the Turkish people and pray that the field hospital will bring relief and comfort to many. Also pray that Israel’s emergency teams will be able to work in safety and be a constant light and encouragement to many in the midst of a very dark and chaotic situation.


God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.

- Psalm 46:1–2

We praise God for the lives the team from Israel has managed to save by pulling them from the rubble, and for the countless lives the Israeli field hospital will save in the days to come. Tens of thousands of Turkish civilians are in need of aid, and Israel wants to answer their cries for help. You can help them. You can partner with Israel's rescue efforts in Turkey by giving to our Crisis Assistance Fund. Your donations will be allocated to continue to equip the Israeli team saving lives amid the devastation.

The Iranian Response Will Come

by Yoni Ben Menachem ~ JCPA

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A hypersonic missile is capable of traveling at Mach-5, five times the speed of sound.

Monday, 6 February 2023 | On January 30, 2023, Israeli drones allegedly attacked Iranian convoys carrying advanced weapons from Iran to Syria.

Drones of the Israeli Air Force [IAF] attacked convoys three times in recent days and destroyed trucks carrying advanced weapons. Eleven were killed in the attacks.

At the same time, the Israeli Mossad [intelligence agency] allegedly attacked a military complex in the center of the city of Isfahan where the production and research of missiles and drones are carried out. The attack was carried out using short-range quadcopter drones, “Micro Aerial Vehicles (MAVs),” according to Iran’s ministry of defense, which carried explosives and crashed into the targets.

According to American and Israeli sources, the operation was successful and frustrated the Iranians because it occurred at the same time as the messages the United States sent through Qatar to Iran about its willingness to resume negotiations on the nuclear deal.

Israel is tight-lipped and has neither confirmed nor denied the attacks. Iran has suffered a public humiliation, Israel’s attacks received extensive international coverage and the world did not buy the Iranian claim that it thwarted the attack on the military compound in Isfahan and that the damage caused was minimal.

It seems that the Israeli establishment chose the target carefully: it is a military compound and not a nuclear facility, indicating that Israel also fears Iran’s conventional capabilities in the field of missiles and drones and not only its nuclear capabilities.

The drone attack on the military compound in Isfahan was late at night. Israel had no intention of harming the lives of Iranian scientists or senior officers of the Revolutionary Guards. The short-range quadcopter drones suggest that they were launched nearby inside Iran.

Israel also fears that Iran will develop hypersonic missiles, currently in the arsenals of Russia, China and North Korea, with whom Iran maintains close relations.

Hypersonic missiles fly at Mach-5, five times the speed of sound, have a low trajectory and have an unpredictable flight path. According to experts, such missiles may represent a threat to Israel’s air defense system. Israel is working to counter the threat with a new Arrow-4 anti-ballistic missile and, reportedly, a high-energy laser.

Iranian sources claim that the United States and Israel use a carrot-and-stick method: Israel uses the stick and hits Iran, while the United States uses the carrot and shows a desire to negotiate with Iran.

Iranian Patience

Iranian sources say that Iran’s response to the Israeli attacks is only a matter of time. Iran has patience, and every Israeli attack is recorded in the Iranian ledger.

In the past two years, Iran has strengthened its air defense systems following Israel’s attacks on the facilities in Karaj and Kermanshah and moved some of its military factories to protected buildings.

It is believed that Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has already ordered the Revolutionary Guards to prepare the Iranian response to the Israeli attacks and that the preparations are underway and will take some time.

These are several of the scenarios for an Iranian response:

  1. Attacks on Israeli and Jewish targets abroad.
  2. Launching precision-guided missiles and drones from Iranian territory toward Israeli targets at sea (such as gas rigs in the Mediterranean) and on land.
  3. An Iranian missile or drone attack on targets in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, where the Iranians claim that a base of the Israeli Mossad operates.
  4. Launching of missiles and drones by the pro-Iranian militias in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen toward Israeli targets.

Clear Message to Iran

In an unprecedented show of strength, the United States and Israeli armed forces launched the Juniper Oak exercise in January, deploying ships, aircraft, artillery and cyber weapons.

Iran is also worried about the visits of senior American government officials to Israel: Jack Sullivan, the US national security adviser, William Burns, the head of the CIA, and Secretary of State Tony Blinken. Moreover, Prime Minister [Benjamin} Netanyahu and President [Joe] Biden are expected to meet in Washington next month.

The Iranian assessment is that this indicates Israeli–American military coordination and that an escalation in Israel’s military activity against Iran is expected, and Iran should prepare accordingly.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs on February 5, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: ShukriH/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord as this dangerous situation becomes increasingly volatile. Pray that both Israeli and American leaders will have great wisdom in responding to the Iranian nuclear threat as well as Iran’s constant stream of supplies to terrorist groups in Lebanon, Syria and Gaza. Beseech the Lord for His protection to surround Israel, for His mighty angels to be posted on every border, and for peace to come to the Middle East.


You are my hiding place; you shall preserve me from trouble; you shall surround me with songs of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with my eye.

- Psalm 32:7–8

Jewish Population in Judea and Samaria Tops Half a Million

by JNS

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The Jewish community of Karnei Shomron in Samaria

Friday, 3 February 2023 | The Jewish population in Judea and Samaria has surpassed half a million people, according to a report compiled by former MK Ya’akov Katz.

There were 502,991 Jews living in Judea and Samaria as of January 1, according to the document, which culled data from the Israeli Interior Ministry’s Population Registry.

That does not include the nearly 350,000 Jews living in the eastern part of Jerusalem, which the Palestinians claim despite the area being by law a part of Israel’s unified capital.

The Jewish population in Judea and Samaria is up 15.5% from January 2018, when 435,159 Jews lived in the territories captured after Arab states initiated what became known as the Six Day War [1967].

The report projects the Jewish population in Judea and Samaria to exceed 600,000 by 2030, 700,000 by 2035 and one million by 2047.

The 500,000-plus Jews living in Judea and Samaria account for 12% of all Jews in Israel, according to the report.

Ahead of its inauguration, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government published a list of policy guidelines that includes a vow to promote settlement throughout the country.

“The Jewish people has an exclusive and inalienable right to all parts of the Land of Israel. The government will promote and develop the settlement of all parts of the Land of Israel—in the Galilee, the Negev, the Golan Heights and Judea and Samaria,” a clause in the document states.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on February 2, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Sraya Diamant/Flash90/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Thank God for the increase in the Jewish population in Israel’s biblical heartland. Pray for those who are being called “settlers” as they build their lives in the very area where their ancient forefathers lived. Call out to God for protection, courage, success and above all, for peace with their neighbors.


“Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem…Thus says the LORD to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.’”

- 2 Chronicles 20:15

Netanyahu’s Sixth Government and the Security Issues Facing Israel

by Col. (ret.) Dr. Jacques Neriah ~ JCPA

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Prime Minister Netanyahu’s sixth government will focus on neutralizing the Iranian nuclear threat permanently.

Friday, 3 February 2023 | Until last month’s inauguration, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was surrounded by security chiefs who opposed unilateral action against Iran. He now finds himself freed from obstruction by the current heads of the Mossad [Israeli Intelligence Agency], Israel Security Agency (ISA) and the Chief of Staff of the IDF [Israel Defense Forces]. His closest aides, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and his director of the National Security Council, Tzachi Hanegbi, a former minister and former head of the Knesset [parliament] Foreign Affairs Committee, are all for an aggressive policy against Iran and its regional legions.

At the inauguration of the new [IDF] Chief of Staff, Herzi Halevy, Netanyahu declared that there was no longer any hesitation regarding the Iranian danger that had to be neutralized. The decision was made to prevent Iran from reaching the nuclear threshold and acquiring a nuclear bomb. Netanyahu wants to save Israel from this threat. He expects a military response from the IDF, and this response will depend on the budgets allocated for the army and coordination with the United States, which should guarantee and protect the rear of the Israeli attacking forces.

There is no longer a “maybe.” There is now only the question of “when” and “how long” it will take to prepare for this eventuality. According to Netanyahu, there is no need to even wait for Iran to succeed in reaching the nuclear threshold. Netanyahu evoked the scenario of a preemptive strike that would destroy all Iranian nuclear facilities and call into question the entire Iranian nuclear program.

The Military Threats to Israel

Israeli leaders are aware that such a scenario could escalate into an all-out war in which Israel will have to face several fronts:

  1. Salvos of precision-guided ballistic missiles shot from outside of Iranian territory, as well as swarms of drones launched from Iran that would attack strategic sites in Israel.
  2. A Hezbollah offensive from Lebanese territory, possibly including attacks on Israel’s natural gas rigs in the Mediterranean Sea.
  3. Coordinated attacks by Iranian militias on the Golan–Syria front.
  4. A Palestinian uprising in the territories of the Palestinian Authority [PA] in Judea and Samaria, and from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, while unleashing domestic instability inside Israel by encouraging subversive actions by Arab circles within Israel.
  5. Houthi participation in Yemen’s armed conflict with Israel.
  6. Israel should expect Israeli ships to be attacked in the Persian Gulf and off the coast of Arabia, as well as possible terrorist attacks on Israeli and Jewish targets in Europe, Africa, South America and Asia carried out by Iranian-backed operatives.

This Netanyahu government, his sixth, is ready for such a scenario, provided it is certain that it can neutralize the Iranian nuclear threat permanently.

Having said that, Netanyahu will not take such a decision without giving notice to the United States, even though Israel can act alone and surprise its American ally. In parallel, Netanyahu could also try to form an anti-Iranian alliance with Israel’s direct Arab neighbors and others who are partners in the Abraham Accords and potential Iranian targets. Such an alliance could provide Israel with strategic support when it comes to attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Seventy-five years after its founding, Israel’s existence is again threatened, this time by a non-Arab enemy [Iran] which is trying to mobilize Arab and non-Arab entities to fight Israel. The ultimate dream of Israel’s founding fathers of living in peace is still far from being realized.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs on February 2, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Openclipart/publicdomainvectors.org

Photo License: publicdomainvectors.org

Prayer Focus
Pray specifically for each of the six scenarios Israel might face in the future that concern Israeli leaders. Cry out to the Lord that none of these scenarios will actually materialize, but should there be an escalation in any area, pray that the Lord will show Himself strong on behalf of His people as He did so often for the ancient Israelites.


“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

- Joshua 1:9

Israel Captures Terror Cell behind Attempted Mass Shooting near Jericho

by JNS

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Israeli forces conduct a counterterror operation near Jenin.

Tuesday, 7 February 2023 | Israeli security forces on Sunday night arrested the terrorist cell responsible for an attempted mass shooting at a restaurant near Jericho last month, according to the Israel Defense Forces [IDF].

Israeli forces came under fire during the arrest raid in Aqbat Jaber, a refugee camp just south of Jericho, and returned fire, killing an unspecified number of gunmen, the IDF said in a statement.

It was the second raid in as many days, after Israeli forces failed to locate the cell during an operation on Saturday. Israeli forces came under fire during Saturday’s operation as well, and several Palestinian gunmen were neutralized, according to the statement. Eighteen suspects were detained for questioning, six of whom were arrested.

On January 28, two armed men armed with an assault rifle and bulletproof vests approached the Me Casa Restaurant near the Israeli town of Vered Yericho, but managed to fire only a single shot before their weapon jammed, the IDF said.

The IDF, in conjunction with the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet), launched a manhunt, tracking the terrorists to Aqbat Jaber, which lies just to the north of Vered Yericho, where they were believed to be hiding with the help of local residents and family members, and planning additional attacks.

The IDF said on Monday that it would “continue to act to thwart any attempt by terrorist organizations and operatives, wherever they may be, to promote terrorist activity against the State of Israel, its citizens and residents.”

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on February 6, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Pray for Israel’s soldiers and security forces who are often in harm’s way as they protect the nation from those who desire to kill and destroy.


The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry. The face of the LORD is against those who do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth. The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles.

- Psalm 34:15–17

Netanyahu: Israel Cannot Count on the PA to Fight Terrorism

by JNS

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks to IDF soldiers in the elite Duvdevan commando unit.

Wednesday, 8 February 2023 | Israel is engaged in a battle against extremist Islamic elements led by the Iranian regime and cannot rely on the Palestinian Authority [PA], Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday.

The remarks came during a visit by Netanyahu to IDF [Israel Defense Forces] Central Command, during which he held a situational assessment with Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant. The prime minister spoke with members of the Duvdevan commando unit, which specializes in undercover operations and urban warfare.

“We are in a confrontation in a region in which there is a continual struggle between those who want to move forward with us and radical Islamist forces that want to take us back to medieval times. It is a major struggle,” said Netanyahu. “Externally, it is—of course—run by Iran, which is our greatest enemy, and we are confronting it. Locally, there are forces that also want to strangle us in various places. Relatively, we are succeeding at the moment, in holding them and in deterring them, whether in [Hamas-ruled] Gaza or in [Hezbollah-controlled] Lebanon,” he continued.

“We would be pleased if the PA would do its share, but we see that it is not. In most cases, it is not confronting those who need to be confronted. It is unclear how long this will continue, but we certainly cannot rely on it,” he said.

The prime minister stressed Israel’s need to maintain security control in Judea and Samaria, which he said necessitates having boots on the ground.

“When we talk about security control on the ground, we mean going into the area. When we talk about going into the area, we mean a range of operations; however, first of all, this capability is yours. You are the vanguard of the security capability of the State of Israel in Judea and Samaria, and not only there. I would like to commend you for this. I want you to continue sharpening the spear-point,” said Netanyahu.

Netanyahu’s comments come on the backdrop of an uptick in Palestinian terrorism, including an attack late last month at a synagogue in Jerusalem that killed seven Israelis.

The IDF has since March 2022 been engaged in a major counter-terrorism offensive dubbed “Operation Break the Wave,” conducting near-nightly raids to eliminate and capture Palestinian terrorist cells, many of them Iranian-sponsored.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on February 8, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon/GPO/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord to grant discernment, wisdom and courage to Israel’s leaders. Pray for His discernment to understand lies or duplicity, His wisdom to know how to communicate and His courage to act with strength against terror.


“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye.”

- Psalm 32:8

Israel, Sudan Lay Foundation for ‘Historic’ Peace Agreement

by JNS

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Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Eli Cohen shakes hands with General Abdel-Fattah Al-Burhan, leader of Sudan’s transitional government.

Friday, 3 February 2023 | Israel will sign a peace agreement with Sudan later this year in Washington, Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen announced Thursday. He confirmed rumors he made a “historic diplomatic visit” to Khartoum earlier in the day. There, he met with General Abdel-Fattah Al-Burhan, leader of Sudan’s transitional government.

“Today’s visit to Sudan lays the foundation for a historic peace agreement with a strategic Arab and Muslim country,” said Cohen upon returning to Israel. “The peace agreement between Israel and Sudan will promote regional stability and contribute to the national security of the State of Israel.”

During the visit, the two officials discussed the necessary steps to sign a peace treaty in the near future, following the finalization of Sudan’s civilian government. Israel conveyed to Sudan its intent to aid in areas that include food security, water-resource management and agriculture.

In Khartoum, Cohen presented an aid program focused on humanitarian goods, water purification and medical needs.

Located on the Red Sea, Sudan is Africa’s third largest country, home to about 47 million. It opposed Israel for decades and fought alongside Arab countries during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948 and Six Day War in 1967. It has facilitated weapons transfers to Hamas and hosted the 1968 Arab League summit, which ratified the infamous “three no’s”: to peace with Israel, recognition of Israel and negotiations with Israel.

Now, Khartoum and Jerusalem appear to be building a new reality, “in which the ‘three no’s’ become the ‘three yeses,’” said Cohen. “Yes to negotiations between Israel and Sudan, yes to recognition of Israel and yes to peace between the states and between the peoples.”

Khartoum first agreed to normalize relations with Israel in October 2020 under the Trump administration, in exchange for Washington removing Sudan from its list of state sponsors of terrorism. In January 2021, it became the fourth country to sign onto the Abraham Accords.

The United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco have also joined the accords, although the current development with Sudan is being billed as a peace agreement in the vein of those forged between Israel and Egypt (1979) and Jordan (1994).

Cohen said the signing of a peace agreement with Sudan will help Israel establish relations with other African countries and strengthen existing ties.

“Israel has been a significant partner for many years in the development processes in these countries and in dealing with the consequences of climate change and the economic challenges in Africa,” he said.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on February 2, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Sudan Transitional Sovereign Council Twitter/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Thank the Lord for increasingly better relations between Israel and African nations. Also pray that God will bless Sudan in the measure that they bless the nation of Israel.


“I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

- Genesis 12:3

Welcome to Hanun: Israel to Establish New Community along Gaza Border

by JNS

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Flowers bloom in a nature reserve near the Gaza border.

Monday, 6 February 2023 | Israel’s Cabinet voted on Sunday to establish a new community along the border with the Gaza Strip.

The future town, to be named Hanun, will be located in the Sdot Negev Region and eventually be inhabited by some 500 families.

“The establishment of the community is further evidence of the resilience of the [citizens living in the] ‘Gaza envelope’ and the power of the State of Israel. We’re proud to build up the Land of Israel and we’re proud to strengthen settlement in all parts of our land,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The new community had received preliminary approval back in 2020.

Cities, towns and villages in southern Israel, and especially those near the border, have been pummeled over the past 15 years by Palestinian rocket fire.

In 2005, Israel uprooted 8,600 Israelis living across 17 locales in Gaza as part of the disengagement from the enclave.

The Strip was soon thereafter conquered by Hamas in an internecine war waged against the Palestinian Authority’s [PA’s] ruling Fatah faction.

Since then, Israel has fought four wars against Hamas, in 2008–2009, 2012, 2014 and 2021, along with numerous smaller conflicts including against Palestinian Islamic Jihad [PIJ].

Late on Saturday night, Israeli air defense systems downed an unmanned aerial vehicle over the Gaza Strip.

The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] did not provide further information regarding the operators of the drone, and notably did not conduct retaliatory strikes against Hamas military assets in the Gaza Strip, which has long been Jerusalem’s policy following rockets attacks and other violations of Israeli territory.

The incident comes after the IDF conducted strikes in Gaza overnight Wednesday in response to an earlier rocket fired by Palestinian terrorists. The IDF said that it struck a Hamas weapons manufacturing site and another facility used by the terrorist group to produce and store chemicals used in the missiles’ manufacture.

Twelve additional projectiles were fired from Gaza as Israeli fighter jets conducted the strikes, according to the military. Eleven exploded in open areas or mid-air, and one fell short in the Strip.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on February 5, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Mendy Hechtman/Flash90/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Beseech the Lord to bless the community of Hanun and protect its inhabitants from any terrorist attacks.


Show Your marvelous lovingkindness by Your right hand, O You who save those who trust in You from those who rise up against them. Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings, from the wicked who oppress me, from my deadly enemies who surround me.

- Psalm 17:7–9

In First, Israeli Doctors Performed Kidney Transplants in Gaza

by Ynet

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A kidney transplant (illustrative)

Tuesday, 7 February 2023 | Over the weekend, and for the first time, Israeli doctors performed two kidney transplant procedures in the Gaza Strip.

Dr. Abed Khalaileh, director of the Kidney Transplant Department, at the Hadassah hospital, and Dr. Sammer Diab, a vascular surgeon at the Rambam Health Care Campus, entered the besieged enclave and performed transplants on two young women.

The doctors, who are members of the Physicians for Human Rights NGO, were accompanied by 25 other medical staff members.

The delegation also brought medicines and medical equipment to Gaza, treated other patients and conducted training in mental health care for local medical personnel.

The NGO said that the surgeries were carried out after a few weeks of preparation work and coordination with the hospital in Gaza.

Meanwhile, Gaza’s Health Ministry said it was waiting for approval to receive X-ray machines needed to treat patients in the Strip.

The ministry, ruled by the terror group Hamas, said requests in the past 14 months for eight different types of X-ray machines and spare parts to repair existing equipment, had been rejected or delayed.

Israel, which together with Egypt maintains a blockade around Gaza citing security concerns, says it was worried about militant groups commandeering such machines for military purposes.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Ynetnews on February 1, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: North Dakota National Guard/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Pray that these two young women would recover completely and that their attitude toward Jewish people will be impacted by this experience in a positive fashion. Praise the Lord for the hearts of Israeli doctors and nurses who want to do good.


Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.

- Psalm 37:3

From Gentle Rain to Stormy Weather

by Janet Aslin

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Tuesday, 7 February 2023 | In mid-January, Israel’s Meteorology Service reported Israel’s driest winter in 60 years, according to the Jerusalem Post. That began to change on January 30 when the winter rains finally arrived in Israel.

In six days, Israel’s capital received a total of 103.6 millimeters (4.07 in.), with most of the precipitation falling on January 31 and February 1. Rain fell over most of the country last week, including desert areas in southern Israel, which typically get much less rainfall. Arad and Beersheva both received 3.5 millimeters (0.14 in.) on February 1, while the Besor Farm, on the border of Egypt and Gaza, was drenched with 10.3 millimeters (0.41 in.).

The level of the Sea of Galilee rose 9 centimeters (3.54 in.) during the week of rainfall. It is currently 1.64 meters (5.38 ft.) from the upper red line, the point at which water must be released from the lake or flooding around the shoreline will occur.

For the most part, last week’s rains were gentle ones, slowly soaking the parched earth. The outlook is much different for the country during the first part of this week as a storm named Barbara arrived on Israel’s coasts early Monday morning. After bringing snow to Athens and other areas of Greece, the weather forecasters are predicting heavy rain and gusting winds for most of Israel.

In contrast to the gentle rains we experienced last week, the Israel Meteorological Service is predicting downpours that may result in 15 millimeters (0.59 in.) of rain in a six-hour period before the rain tapers off on Wednesday.

On Monday, snow is expected on Mt. Hermon, Israel’s tallest peak, with the possibility of snow in higher elevations in the center of the country on Tuesday. The coastal areas will get the strongest winds, causing waves 6.7 –7.9 meters (22 – 26 ft.) high.

The nation’s emergency services have been preparing to meet situations caused by flooding, power outages and other storm-related emergencies.

Jerusalem woke up to strong winds on Monday with heavy rainfall, and even hail in some parts of the city, arriving late in the day. The rain continued steadily through the night with Tuesday morning revealing small lakes in parking lots and streams flowing at the edges of streets.

It remains to be seen whether or not this will be the storm that will bring snowfall to the nation’s capital. Temperatures hovering around the freezing point are in the forecast for the city that sits at an altitude of 754 meters (2,474 ft.) so it may be that snow is on the way!

Source: (Bridges for Peace, February 7, 2023)

Photo Credit: Precious Fleming/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Bless the Lord for the rain sent to nourish the earth and give life to all creatures. At the same time, pray for abundant rains to continue.


You visit the earth and water it, you greatly enrich it; the river of God is full of water; you provide their grain, for so You have prepared it.

- Psalm 65:9