Compassion

Help Bridges for Peace pursue our mission of doing good in the Land of Israel.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Every week, we post from 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.

Hamas Official Rallies Palestinians to “Slaughter, Kill” Jews

by Ilse Strauss

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hamas terror against Israel includes a steady barrage of rockets, terror tunnels and arson attacks (illustrative).

Tuesday, 16 July 2019 | Fathi Hammad feels strongly that Palestinians should not restrict violent attacks to target Jews in Israel only. According to the senior Hamas official, the time has come for his Palestinian brethren living abroad to take up their mantle of responsibility to eradicate all the Jews around the world.

Hammad delivered his rallying cry for mass murder and genocide on Friday to some 6,000 Palestinians who swarmed to the Israel–Gaza border to riot, throw explosive devices and other objects at Israeli troops and breach the border fence.

Addressing the violent mob, Hammad said he understood that his Palestinian “brothers” abroad have been preparing for the massacre ahead. However, his patience with them has now worn thin. “All of you 7 million Palestinians abroad, enough of the warming up. You have Jews everywhere and we must attack every Jew on planet earth—we must slaughter and kill them, with Allah’s help.”

Hammad then directed his ire at the Palestinians in Judea and Samaria, lambasting them for their failure to murder Jews. “How long will you sit in silence,” he raged. “You can buy knives for NIS 5 [US $1.40]! How much is the neck of a Jew worth to us?”

Hammad’s comments sparked a flurry of condemnation, including from the powers that be in the Palestinian Authority (PA) and leading Palestinian activists. Hamas was also quick to distance itself from its senior official’s inflammatory remarks. In an official statement posted to its website, the Islamist terror group—which highlights the destruction of Israel as one of its main purposes and advocates for jihad (holy war) to replace “every inch” of the Jewish state with a Palestinian one—sought to allay the fears of the international community that its murderous intentions were, in fact, restricted to Israel only.

“These statements do not represent the movement’s official positions and consistent, adopted policies that stipulate that our conflict is with the occupation, which is occupying our land and sullying our holy sites,” the statement reads.

The pithy platitude does, however, fly in the face of the terror group’s practice of calling for terror attacks, hailing terrorists who murdered civilians as heroes and celebrating these killings with fireworks and handing out sweet treats.

For its part, Israel takes Hammad’s rhetoric as a reflection of the terror group’s ethos. “We use his statements…to reveal Hamas’s true face,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Arabic-language spokesperson, Ofir Gendelman, via Twitter.

Moreover, one does not simply unring a bell. Bloody clarion calls like Hammad’s have in the past resulted in protracted periods of violence and bloodshed. In September 2015, PA President Mahmoud Abbas ensured his people in a public broadcast, “We bless every drop of blood that has been spilt for Jerusalem…Every martyr will reach Paradise and everyone wounded will be rewarded by Allah.” Less than a month later, the Knife or Stabbing Intifada (uprising) erupted, ushering in a grim eight-month period in which 28 people were murdered.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, July 16, 2019)

Photo Credit: The Watchman with Erick Stakelbeck/YouTube/screenshot

Prayer Focus
Pray that the Lord will protect His people from cries for violence, whether from individuals or terror organizations as a whole. Lift up the Jewish people before God to keep them in safety and peace despite the hatred they face around the world.

Scripture

Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.


- Deuteronomy 31:6

Netanyahu: Europe Has its Head in the Sand over Iranian Threat

by Kate Norman

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and European Union Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini at the EU Council building in Brussels (illustrative).

Tuesday, 16 July 2019 | Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu compared the compliance of the European Union (EU) to that of their predecessors in the pre-World War II 1930s when the body announced that it will not take any steps to penalize Iran after it openly deviated from the limitations set by the 2015 nuclear deal.

“Then as well, there were those who buried their heads in the sand and did not see the approaching danger,” the prime minister proclaimed in a video statement. “Apparently, there are those in Europe who will not wake up until Iranian nuclear missiles fall on Europe. But then it will be too late.”

Last year the United States pulled out what it called the “flawed” deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and reimposed sanctions on Iran, plunging the Islamic Republic into a financial pickle. The other partners in the deal, members of the P5+1 (permanent members of the UN Security Council comprising the US, Russia, China, the United Kingdom and France plus Germany) remained party to the agreement and have been holding emergency meetings and councils to salvage what is left of the deal.

Their efforts were not enough to placate Iran, however, and the regime announced in May that it would begin operating outside the limitations set under the JCPOA until the Europeans could get them out of financial trouble, a move US officials have called “extortion.” Over the past few weeks, Iran has surpassed the 3,000-kilogram (660-lb) limit of enriched uranium and has begun enriching its uranium supply above the 3.67% purity limit, which experts have warned will shorten the timespan for the regime to develop nuclear weapons.

The EU doesn’t see these deviations as a significant enough threat, however, to begin the process necessary under the JCPOA to reimpose European and UN sanctions on the nation should Iran violate its terms of the agreement—which it has.

“For the time being, none of the parties to the agreement have signaled their intention to invoke this article, which means that none of them for the moment, for the time being with the current data we have in particular from the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency, an organization that monitors nuclear development] that the noncompliance is considered to be significant noncompliance,” EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said during a press conference after meeting with EU foreign ministers in Brussels yesterday.

Though allies Israel and the United States repeatedly assert that the international community should combat Iran’s nuclear ambitions, wielding sharp sanctions to bring the regime to its knees and back into compliance, the EU is attempting to wield a cushiony policy of appeasement to coax Iran back into compliance.

“The deal is not in good health, but it’s still alive,” Mogherini insisted, noting that Iran’s violations were reversible. “We hope and we invite Iran to reverse these steps and go back to full compliance with the agreement.”

The Jewish state will not join in Europe’s policy of Iranian appeasement, the prime minister asserted. In his statement, Netanyahu vowed that Israel “will continue to do everything we need to do to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”

The EU already drew lines in the sand with the JCPOA that Iran was not to cross. Then it did—and they didn’t do anything about it. If Iran’s recent violations were deemed not significant enough, when will they be deemed so? Where will the EU draw the line—and actually enforce it?

Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi issued a warning on Monday that if the Europeans and the US “do not fulfill their obligations,” Iran will “return the conditions to four years ago,” revamping its nuclear development program to its pre-JCPOA conditions, Islamic Republic News Agency reported.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, July 16, 2019)

Photo Credit: BBC News/YouTube/screenshot

Prayer Focus
Ask the Lord to open the eyes of the world leaders to see the truth about Iran and its malignant intentions. Pray that they will honor their commitments and step up to do their part in curbing Iranian aggression. Petition the Lord to thwart the plans of the Islamic regime.

Scripture

Those also who seek my life lay snares for me; those who seek my hurt speak of destruction, and plan deception all the day long. Do not forsake me, O LORD; O my God, be not far from me! Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation! For in You, O LORD, I hope; You will hear, O Lord my God.


- Psalm 38:12, 21–22, 15

Israel’s Natural Gas Deposits in the Mediterranean Sea Boosts Regional Relations

by  Edgar Asher

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Heerema oil and gas rig off the northern coast of Israel

Thursday, 18 July 2019 | Natural gas and oil have been found in the Eastern Mediterranean that gives countries in the region both an independence in energy production and the bonus of being able to export this surplus energy to countries far away from the source of this undersea wealth.

When the modern State of Israel was founded in 1948, the idea that Israel would be known some fifty years later as the “start-up nation,” or that there would be huge deposits of natural gas under the Eastern Mediterranean was unthinkable. However, this little “start-up nation” did have huge natural gas reserves within its territorial water. So much so that part of these reserves could be exported to countries far away from its shores.

The discovery of natural gas also helped to improve relations between Israel and Greece, Israel and Cyprus and Israel and Egypt. As far as Israel, Greece and Cyprus are concerned, the three countries will benefit for many years into the future by the selling of natural gas to Europe. This will be facilitated by a pipeline from the depths of the Eastern Mediterranean to customers all over Europe, via a land connection across Greece and Cyprus.

Israel wants to continue to explore for further natural gas deposits, and possibly oil resources in its offshore economic zone. However, in Israel’s northern sector there exists a dispute between Lebanon and Israel over the border of the economic zone in the Mediterranean Sea off the two countries’ coasts. Currently the United States is mediating between the two protagonists to settle the matter. It is to be hoped that there will be an agreement between the two countries over the disputed area in the not too distant future.

Another area of dispute is between Turkey and Cyprus. In 1974 Turkey invaded northern Cyprus and declared the area as the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.”   Ankara reasoned that most Cypriots living in the breakaway north were of Turkish origin and as far as Turkey was concerned it was the clear desire of the northern Cypriot residents to ally themselves to Turkey. This situation has never been accepted by the European Union [EU] and in particular Greece and the rest of Cyprus.

Despite this situation Turkey is sending an oil drilling platform to search for gas and oil off the northern coast of Cyprus—an area regarded by the EU as the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of Cyprus. The immediate response by the EU is to sanction Turkey.

In the meantime, it is business as usual off the coast of Haifa as an oil and gas rig owned by the Dutch company Heerema Marine Contractors will begin to prepare for a new rig to release the undersea bonanza.

Hopefully the incredible energy possibilities will overcome the illogical wrath of the Eastern Mediterranean countries. In general, former enemies, Israel and Egypt, have managed to have a modus operandi as far as energy supplies are concerned.    Relations nowadays between Israel, Greece and Cyprus could not be better. The role of Turkey in Eastern Mediterranean matters is very uncertain. The present regime is very belligerent with a dictatorial leader. The Turkish administration is angered with its rejection by the EEC to become a member of the alliance. Thus, the Turks look towards Russia to improve its domination in the region. The Russians will be happy to assist.

Perhaps the huge deposits of natural gas will be the carrot that is needed to reconcile Israel and Lebanon.

Source: (This press release was originally published by Ashernet on July 17, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today.)

Photo Credit: Ashernet

Prayer Focus
Sing praises to the Lord for blessing Israel with the natural resources off its coastline to strengthen its economy and forge ties of cooperation and friendship with neighboring countries. Pray for the ongoing negotiations between Israel and Lebanon to serve as a means of reconciliation between the two nations.

Scripture

A land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing; a land whose stones are iron and out of whose hills you can dig copper. When you have eaten and are full, then you shall bless the LORD your God for the good land which He has given you.


- Deuteronomy 8:9–10

Wildfires Break Out across Israel as Temperatures Soar in Extreme Heat Wave

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Extreme heat wave in Israel has precipitated several wildfires across the country (illustrative).

Thursday, 18 July 2019 | Wildfires broke out Wednesday afternoon at several locations around Israel as an unexpected extreme heat  wave hit the country, sending temperatures skyrocketing to above 40°C [104°F] in some areas.

A large fire broke out near Moshav Aderet, close to the city of Beit Shemesh, while a further massive forest fire was raging in the Arab town of Barta’a in Wadi Ara. Large numbers of firefighters were deployed to the area, accompanied by firefighting planes.

Some 200 homes were evacuated in the Wadi Ara communities of Barta’a, Ar’ara and Katzir, and residents of Moshav Aderet and Roglit were also evacuated.

In the Haifa region, a fire was raging on the mountainside between the Check Post junction, the Neve Sha’anan neighborhood and the nearby town of Nesher.

Another fire broke out in the Ramat Pinkas neighborhood of Or Yehuda in central Israel, setting a number of homes ablaze. Residents were evacuated from the first line of houses in the neighborhood and the entrance to the area was blocked.

Fire fighting forces were able to contain the Or Yehuda fire.

Additional forest fires also broke out in Modi’in, Petah Tikva, Kfar Sava and Kfar Yona in central Israel and in Ashdod in the south.

The heat wave sent temperatures soaring to 39°C [102°F] in Tel Aviv and the central region; in Tiberias in the north the temperature hit 41°C [106°F], and in the southern cities of Eilat and Beersheva it was to reach as high as 42°C [108°F].

“We call on the public, especially elderly people and those who suffer from chronic illnesses, to avoid sun, heat exposure and unnecessary physical effort,” the Health Ministry announced in a statement on Tuesday, adding that people should remain in air-conditioned spaces and drink plenty of water.

“It’s an unusual but a very brief occurrence,” said Giora Frenkel from the Meteo-Tech meteorological company.

He added that excessively hot weather is due to a system of high atmospheric pressure moving into Israeli territory from Egypt, made worse by low humidity levels across the country.

In coastal areas, humidity levels will decrease to below 40% while in inland areas they will fall to below 25%, an unusual occurrence for mid-summer climate.

Despite the overwhelming heat the skies will be cloudy, the winds will accelerate throughout the day and parts of the country will be shrouded in early mist and fog. In the afternoon hours, the heat will gradually begin to subside, while humidity levels will begin to rise.

The extreme weather has prompted the Fire and Rescue Services to issue a statement banning fires from being lit in open areas—where strong winds can lead to the flames spreading beyond control—and forests.

Editor’s Note: A series of devastating blazes at the end of May burned up an entire Israeli community and left 50 families destitute as the fires ravaged their homes, leaving nothing but ashes. These Israelis now live in the heartbreaking reality of rebuilding what was destroyed. They are not facing this task alone. Bridges for Peace is coming alongside them, offering the physical means and the helping hand they need so desperately. We need your help as we stand with this community in the midst of rising from the ashes. Your generous donation to our Crisis Assistance Fund will help us meet our pledge goal of US $150,000 to show these hurting people the love of Christians across the world.

Source: (Ynetnews originally published this article on July 17, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: YWN/YouTube/screenshot

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord to quench the blazes and protect Israel and her people from the flames. Ask Him to strengthen and sustain the firefighters and emergency workers who work around the clock to keep the fires under control.

Scripture

When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.


- Isaiah 43:2b–3a

Action
Your generous donation to our Crisis Assistance Fund will help us meet our pledge goal of US $150,000 to show these hurting people the love of Christians across the world.

Netanyahu: Israel Will Respond to Hezbollah “With Crushing Military Blow”

by Joshua Spurlock

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hezbollah troops from Lebanon

Monday, 15 July 2019 | Israel will unleash a devastating counterattack if Hezbollah were to attack from Lebanon, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Sunday, in response to the latest threats from Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. “Over the weekend we heard Nasrallah’s remarks on his attack plans. It should be clear that if Hezbollah dares to do some nonsense and attacks Israel, we will hit him and Lebanon with a crushing military blow,” said Netayahu in comments released by his office.

The counter-threat came after Hezbollah Secretary General Nasrallah said in an interview with Al-Manar that another war with Israel would put the Jewish state “on the verge of vanishing.” To prove his point, Nasrallah boasted that they had weapons capable of reaching up and down the Israeli coastline and targeting Israel’s international airport, seaports and petrochemical plants. He claimed Hezbollah had precision missiles and drones, while staying evasive on whether or not they had anti-aircraft missiles.

Netanyahu mocked Nasrallah’s specificity, stating, “I do not intend to detail our plans.” Instead, he simply pointed to how they foiled the plot to build terror tunnels into Israel. “It is enough to recall that Nasrallah had—for years—dug terrorist tunnels, which we destroyed within days.”

The strong words came as the region is experiencing extreme tension between the United States—which is a close ally of Israel—and Iran, which is aligned with Hezbollah. Nasrallah touched on that conflict as well, claiming that if the US attacked Iranian targets, Iran would respond by striking American ones.

He also specifically listed US allies in the Saudis, the United Arab Emirates and Israel as being at risk if they participate in an Iran–US war. Nasrallah implied that Hezbollah would get involved as well.

It has been long believed that Iran would attack Israel in response to an American attack on Iranian targets, and the latest threats from Nasrallah may have been part of the public relations psychological war in the current conflict. Iran has already recently downed an American drone and attacked multiple oil tankers in an effort to respond to US sanctions and what they deem a failure of the Europeans to mitigate their economic woes.

On Sunday, Israel’s rhetoric wasn’t just aimed at Hezbollah. In regards to Iran, Netanyahu said in additional comments released by his office, “The only thing that the awful nuclear agreement gave is our strong and ongoing rapprochement with the main Arab countries. Iran tells them in a straightforward manner—‘We will destroy you and we will destroy you, first of all, with nuclear weapons.’”

Netanyahu said he warned the nuclear deal between Iran and the world powers would not only “pave their way to a nuclear arsenal,” but also give Iran hundreds of billions of dollars to use in their efforts to build an empire.

“Today you can judge if we were right or not,” said Netanyahu. “Then first of all this must be blocked. At the moment, the only military in the world that is confronting Iran—is the Israeli military.”

Source: (The Middle East Update originally published this article on July 14, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today.)

Photo Credit: Voice of America/wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
During this tense time in relations between world leaders and nations, bring Israel’s northern border to the throne of the Lord and ask Him for His divine protection over that region. Pray that He will protect His Promised Land and bring any evil intentions of the enemy to light.

Scripture

The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble.


- Nahum 1:7

Israel and South Korea Strengthen Ties

by Edgar Asher

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Korean President Moon Jae-in at the South Korean president’s residence in Seoul, South Korea.

Tuesday, 16 July 2019 | Israeli President Reuven Rivlin held a working meeting on Sunday with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. The meeting took place in South Korea’s capital Seoul at President Moon’s official residence. At the conclusion of their meeting, memorandums of understandings were signed between the two countries in the field of energy and education.

The two presidents spoke about the growing ties between the two countries and where the cooperation can be expanded. To further this end, President Rivlin was accompanied by a delegation representing Israeli interests in the fields of economics, business, innovation, academia and science.

President Rivlin noted that in 2018 Israel welcomed some 45,000 Korean tourists to Israel. This figure could be even higher if the Korean government would remove its travel warning to its citizens who come to Israel. President Rivlin pointed out that the warning being given to Koreans coming to visit Israel does not reflect the present security situation in Israel.

Referring to the large Christian community in South Korea President Rivlin told his host about the plan to turn the monasteries in the Jordan Valley into a pilgrimage area, which is now possible due to the recent removal of all landmines. The president spoke of the process, which received the consent and blessing of all the parties involved, and of his meetings with the Pope in which they have discussed the project over several years.

President Moon Jae-in said that the State of Israel is an inspiration to him and that he looks with amazement at its achievements over the years. President Moon said that he sees great scope for progress in trade relations between the two countries and that the negotiations between the two countries will gain momentum in the spirit of the president’s important visit to South Korea. The Korean president added, “Since our two countries share similar economic structures and the same belief in the importance of innovation and development, I believe that we can significantly advance bilateral ties. If we succeed in concluding the free trade agreement soon, our economic cooperation will expand and be reflected in greater investment, trade and more. Israel is known as a start-up nation, with the most startups in the world, and I look forward to learning more about this.”

President Rivlin responded, “I believe that Israel and South Korea can work together to spread the blessings of technology and innovation throughout the Middle East.  President Moon, let us work together to bring our economies, our countries and our peoples closer together. Here accompanying me are our finest brains, leaders of Israel’s finest universities, higher educational system and academy of science and humanities, leaders from the public and private sector in the fields of hi-tech, cyber, health and defense. Let us explore the miracles we can make together,” he concluded.

Source: (This press release was originally published by Ashernet on July 14, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today.)

Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon/GPO/Ashernet

Prayer Focus
Praise God for this growing relationship between Israel and South Korea! The Lord is doing miraculous things in lifting up the apple of His eye in the esteem of nations across the world. Ask Him for favor for His nation, to continue to build bridges and strong alliances between Israel and the world.

Scripture

Two are better than one…For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up…Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.


- Ecclesiastes 4:9a, 10, 12

From Victim to Hero: A Rocket Attack Survivor’s Journey

by  Matan Tzuri

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

IDF rocket alerts in Sderot (illustrative)

Wednesday, 17 July 2019 | In 2002, before the Iron Dome became a part of the Israeli reality, the city of Sderot was under near constant rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip. That year, S., then a 16-month-old baby, suffered serious wounds from more than 147 shrapnel pieces. Years later, and after a long recovery, S. is on his way to joining the IDF’s [Israel Defense Forces] Naval Commando unit.

“I just decided that I can do it,” S. says. I hope to set an example for Sderot teens, so that they will know that we can grow up to make our dreams come true, no matter what we endure.”

S. is now 18 [years old] and bares some 60 scars from the day of his injury. He hardly remembers that day, in which one of two rockets launched from Beit Hanoun in the Gaza Strip hit his home’s back yard, where he was playing. However, he says that his soul remembers everything.

“Every now and again, when I’m asleep or when I close my eyes, I hear noises and ambulance sirens, sounds of things breaking. It’s like in a film, like a distant memory. That’s all I remember, the rest is from stories,” S. says.

“I heard a blast and I went outside looking for S.,” his mother recalls. “I saw him standing in the back yard covered in blood, then picked him up and ran outside, and paramedics took us to the hospital.”

Miraculously, the shrapnel pieces didn’t penetrate deep into S.’s body. Doctors treated him for hours and removed them piece by piece, some as big as five centimeters [2 inches]. After a few days at the hospital, he was released, covered in bandages.

S. went through all the difficult exams the Naval Commando requires, and was excited to hear he had gotten in. “I just decided that after all that I’ve been through, I can make it thought these exams,” he says.

“It was just a matter of decision; it took a lot of willpower. It wasn’t easy, but I withstood the challenge,” S. says. “It’s a miracle that I’m alive and that I was able to get into the elite unit I’ve always dreamed of getting into.”

The story of S. is widely known in Sderot, and he’s become a symbol in the border town. He is often invited to schools to tell his story.

Alon Davidi, Sderot’s mayor, recently met with S. to wish him good luck. “I know S. since he was a boy, I’ve been following his story from when he was an elementary school kid, through the Yeshiva [religious school] high school and now as he was able to get into the Naval Commando against all odds, in light of his injuries,” Davidi says.

“His story is an example of how one can make the best even out of the most difficult circumstances.”

Source: (Ynetnews originally published this article on July 16, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Israel Defense Forces@IDF/twitter.com

Prayer Focus
Praise God for preserving the life of this brave young man and restoring life out of the potential tragedy. Bring him before the Lord as he embarks on his service in the IDF. Pray that his story of overcoming hardship will stand as a testimony that others can draw strength from.

Scripture

You, who have shown me great and severe troubles, shall revive me again, and bring me up again from the depths of the earth. You shall increase my greatness, and comfort me on every side.


- Psalm 71:20–21

Does UK Labour Party Owe Jewish Community an Unqualified Apology?

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Jews rally against anti-Semitism in the UK.

Friday, 12 July 2019 | Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has called on the Labour Party to “automatically expel anti-Semites” and said the organization, which he led from 2007 to 2010, “owes the Jewish community an unqualified apology” over virulent anti-Jewish hate in a damning indictment of the current leadership.

In a speech delivered to a packed audience Sunday for the 17th annual Isaiah Berlin Lecture in London, Brown made clear that anti-Semitism must be called out by all for what it is: “racism—and in this case, anti-Jewish racism.”

The former Labour leader minced no words when he said: “To the Jewish community, we promised ‘never again.’ We promised that the crimes of hatred, discrimination, and persecution would never recur.

“But at a time when attacks on Jewish schools have risen 100%, attacks on or near Jewish synagogues 400%, and attacks are carried out on social media thousands of times over, we have not lived up to that promise.”

Since Jeremy Corbyn took over the Labour leadership in 2015, the party has been embroiled in an ongoing row over anti-Semitism.

Corbyn famously called the designated terrorist groups Hezbollah and Hamas “friends”; invited Palestinian hate preacher Raed Salah to tea in parliament; shared a stage with Dyab Abou Jajah, a Lebanese activist who said Europe had made “the cult of the Holocaust and Jew-worshiping its alternative religion”; donated money to an anti-Israel group led by a Holocaust denier; and laid a wreath on the grave of a PLO terrorist involved in the 1972 Munich massacre of Israeli athletes.

Corbyn also cashed in on his television show hosted by state-owned Iranian Press TV.

In his speech, Brown stressed that, “We cannot go on ignoring the consequences of the upsurge in hate and hate speech” and said an apology to the Jewish community would only be “a starting point in rebuilding trust.”

He called for a broad strategy, including better education in schools and tougher laws against racism in all its forms. “Opposing anti-Semitism and every manifestation of racism goes to the heart of who we are and what we stand for as Labour,” he explained.

He promised the Jewish community that “whenever prejudice and intolerance arise, I and whomever I can persuade are not going to remain silent or stand aside or desert the Jewish community.”

Source: (This article was originally published by The Israel Project in its publication The Tower on July 10, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See the original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: i24NEWS English/YouTube/screenshot

Prayer Focus
Beseech the Lord to bring to the light and root out the evil of anti-Semitism in governments and those in leadership positions. Pray that those who ascribe to this baseless hatred will be exposed and dealt with.   

Scripture

“I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you.”


- Genesis 12:3

Free Weekly Israel Prayer Update & News



Prayer Updates