Compassion

Help us bless the people of Israel.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

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.

Gantz Fails to Form a Government, Israel Likely in for Third Round of Elections

by Kate Norman

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Former IDF chief Benny Gantz could not break through the political gridlocks to form a government.

Thursday, 21 November 2019 | Hours before his deadline to form a government coalition was up, prime minister hopeful Benny Gantz phoned Israeli President Reuven Rivlin to inform him of his failure to tackle what had been deemed mission impossible.

This plunges Israel into unprecedented territory: a 21-day period where any member of Knesset (Parliament) with a majority backing can vie for the premier position. Pending another failure to forge a majority-backed government, the Jewish state will delve even further into unexplored territory: a third round of elections in a year.

In his concession speech last night, former military chief of staff Gantz insisted that he “turned every stone” and “sifted through every grain of sand” to form a government, blaming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for blocking his attempts to compromise.

President Rivlin called on the MKs (members of Knesset) from the onset to set aside their personal differences and form a unity government with Netanyahu and Gantz each serving a term as prime minister in order to spare the people of Israel from their current circumstance: an uncertain future under a transitional government.

“Forming a government is not only the wish of the people,” Rivlin said at the swearing in of the 22nd Knesset on October 3. “More than ever, in times like these, it is an economic and security need the likes of which we have not known for many years.”

In Israeli elections, the people vote for a party, not a person. After the elections are over, the president selects a candidate, usually—but not always—from the winning party to attempt to form a government based on a majority coalition—requiring a 61-seat majority of the Knesset’s 120 seats.

The candidate selected by the president has 28 days to round up 61 seats and form a majority coalition for a functioning government. If that candidate fails to do so, the president will select another candidate to attempt the same task.

Though Gantz’s Blue and White Party won one more seat than Netanyahu’s Likud Party in the September elections, Rivlin tapped Netanyahu to take the first crack at forming a coalition since the prime minister had more backing in the Knesset than his opponent.

Netanyahu was gridlocked, however, by several nonnegotiables from different players in the king-making game. Gantz refused to sit in a government with Netanyahu, who has been accused of corruption. Netanyahu refused to give up the right-wing and ultra-Orthodox allies who sit in his block, which Gantz’s Blue and White Party required for a secular centralized unity government.

During his attempt, Gantz explored the options of forming a unity government or a minority government supported by political factions who would not sit in a coalition with the former IDF chief—notably, the Joint List of Arab parties.

Gantz sat down yesterday to meet with party heads for unity talks, notably meeting with Yisrael Beytenu Party head Avigdor Liberman, who was arguably responsible for sending Israel to the last round of elections.

Netanyahu failed to stitch together a coalition during the last round in May when Liberman stymied him by refusing to join unless they could agree on terms for drafting ultra-religious Jews into the military. Netanyahu, who is backed by ultra-Orthodox parties, refused, the Knesset voted to dissolve itself and the country was plunged into the last round of elections.

Liberman created another stone wall on Wednesday when he announced that he would not support Gantz’s attempts to patch together a minority government or a unity government co-headed by his rival Netanyahu.

“There is no chance,” Liberman declared yesterday just before the clock ran out on Gantz. “We will not join either a limited right- or left-wing government or a minority government. Whatever sort of government that would be, it would not survive and would not be able to function to do what is needed for the country.”

The next step is where the government currently stands: a 21-day window for 61 members to put forth any MK (member of Knesset) as a candidate for prime minister. Otherwise, the country heads to another election. Both Netanyahu and Gantz have another opportunity as either could potentially be nominated by a majority, though the possibility seems unlikely given the political gridlock.

The window closes on December 11 for any candidate to be put forth by the majority—then the country heads into round three in March 2020.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 21, 2019)

Photo Credit: Israel Defense Forces/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Pray for the leaders and would-be leaders of Israel. Petition the Lord to soften their hearts so they will put aside their personal agendas and put the needs of the nation first. Ask the Lord to provide a clear path for these political leaders to a functioning government that will meet the needs of the Israeli people.

Scripture

For the kingdom is the Lord’s and He rules over the nations.


- Psalm 22:28

Israel Strikes Dozens of Iranian Military Targets Overnight in Syria

by Kate Norman

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

An Israeli Air Force plane (illustrative)

Wednesday, 20 November 2019 | After four rockets were launched into northern Israel from Syria early Tuesday morning, the Israeli military announced it executed overnight strikes on Iranian and Syrian military targets in Syria.

Israeli fighter jets struck dozens of military targets near Damascus and in the Syrian Golan Heights, including surface-to-air missiles, military headquarters and bases, and weapons warehouses that belonged to Iran’s Quds Force [military wing of Islamic Jihad] and Syrian Armed Forces.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) also hit the command center of the Quds Force in Syria, an unnamed Israeli security official told Arutz Sheva.

During the strike, Syria launched a defensive missile, “despite clear warnings to refrain from such fire,” the IDF said. “As a result, a number of Syrian aerial defense batteries were destroyed.”

The strikes came less than a day after four projectiles were launched from Syria into Israel’s north, which were attributed to Iranian forces operating in the area. The rockets were all intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome aerial defense system.

Eleven people were reportedly killed in the overnight strikes, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR). Seven of those people were described by the organization as “foreign combatants,” often a euphemism for Iranian soldiers.

“We hold the Syrian regime responsible for the actions that take place in Syrian territory and warn them against allowing further attacks against Israel,” the military warned in a statement. “We will continue operating firmly and for as long as necessary against the Iranian entrenchment in Syria.”

This represents a significant deviation in Israel’s policy of acknowledging its strikes in Syria. Often attacks on Iranian and proxy targets in the region are attributed to Israel as an attempt to uproot Tehran’s attempts to dig its heels into the nations surrounding the Jewish state—though Israel rarely confirms its involvement.

This time, not only did Israel confirm its involvement—the IDF announced it to the world.

“The rules have changed,” Israel’s new defense minister proclaimed in a statement shortly after the strikes were announced. “Whoever fires on Israel during the day will not sleep at night.”

“Our message to the leaders of Iran is simple: you are no longer immune” Defense Minister Naftali Bennett declared. “Any place you dispatch your tentacles, we will chop them off.”

Bennett was passed the defense minister baton last week under a storm of rockets raining down from Gaza courtesy of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad—a terror group that is armed, funded and trained by Iran. Bennett has shown no signs of being intimidated and has issued clear warnings against any acts of aggression on Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a warning of his own Wednesday morning.

“I have made it clear that whoever hurts us—we will hurt him,” Netanyahu said in statements released by his office. “This is what we did overnight vis-à-vis military targets of the Iranian Al Quds force and Syrian military targets in Syria after a barrage of rockets was launched at Israel.

“We will continue to vigorously maintain the security of Israel.”

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 20, 2019)

Photo Credit: Cpl. Yuval Shmueli, IDF Spokesperson's Unit/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Thank the Lord that in both attacks on Israel’s northern and southern borders, no Israeli civilians or soldiers were killed! Ask the Lord to keep His hand of divine protection over Israel and her borders—north and south.

Scripture

“Hear, O Israel: Today you are on the verge of battle with your enemies. Do not let your heart faint, do not be afraid, and do not tremble or be terrified because of them; for the Lord your God is He who goes with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.”


- Deuteronomy 20:3–4

US Revises View on Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria

by Joshua Spurlock

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

An Israeli community in Samaria

Wednesday, 20 November 2019 | The Trump Administration announced a change in the American perspective on the legality of Israeli [communities] in Judea and Samaria on Monday, reversing the position of the Obama Administration that had called the civilian communities illegal. “The establishment of Israeli civilian settlements in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] is not per se inconsistent with international law,” United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters.

“…We believe that what we’ve done today is we have recognized the reality on the ground…and we have provided…the very space for Israel and the Palestinians to come together to find a political solution to this very, very vexing problem.”

Pompeo, whose comments were published by the State Department, made it clear the US was not commenting on the legality of specific [communities], noting Israel’s court system has repeatedly addressed that issue. For the US, the control of territory in the Biblical heartland—claimed by the Palestinians in what they call the West Bank—is a matter for peace negotiations between the sides.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu celebrated the move. “This policy reflects a historical truth—that the Jewish people are not foreign colonialists in Judea and Samaria. In fact, we are called Jews because we are the people of Judea.”

In addition to the history, Netanyahu agreed with Pompeo that the US decision can positively impact the Middle East peace process.

“The Trump Administration policy is also correct in stating that those who have categorically denied any legal basis for the settlements not only deny truth, history and the reality on the ground, they also set back the cause of peace, which can only be achieved through direct negotiations between the parties,” said Netanyahu on Monday in comments released by his office.

“…Israel remains ready and willing to conduct peace negotiations with the Palestinians regarding all final status issues in an effort to achieve a durable peace but will continue to reject all arguments regarding the illegality of the settlements.”

Israel captured the territory from Jordan in the 1967 defensive war that saw Israel also retake eastern Jerusalem. Since then, hundreds of thousands of Israelis have moved into Judea and Samaria, building communities in Biblical locations such as Hebron and Beit El. The Palestinians have claimed that the dwellings are illegal since they accuse Israel of occupying their territory.

Citing a somewhat fluid approach on the issue by the various United States presidential administrations over the last four decades, Pompeo said the Trump Administration agreed with former President Ronald Reagan’s view on the legality of the [communities].

“Subsequent administrations recognized that unrestrained settlement activity could be an obstacle to peace, but they wisely and prudently recognized that dwelling on legal positions didn’t advance peace,” said Pompeo, criticizing the government of Barack Obama for “publicly reaffirming the supposed illegality of settlements.”

“Calling the establishment of civilian settlements inconsistent with international law hasn’t worked. It hasn’t advanced the cause of peace,” said Pompeo.

“The hard truth is there will never be a judicial resolution to the conflict, and arguments about who is right and wrong as a matter of international law will not bring peace. This is a complex political problem that can only be solved by negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians.”

Netanyahu said the US decision “rights a historical wrong.”

Said the Israeli premier, “Israel’s legal system, which has proven itself fully capable of addressing legal questions related to the settlements, is the appropriate place for these matters to be adjudicated—not biased international forums that pay no attention to history or facts.

“[Israel] calls upon all responsible countries who hope to advance peace to adopt a similar position.”

Editor’s Note: Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria as well as the Golan Heights are often referred to in the international community as “settlements” or by those who do not recognize Israeli sovereignty over the land as “illegal settlements.”

Source: (The Mideast Update originally published this article on November 19, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today.)

Photo Credit: Sarah Yoder/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Praise God for this momentous shift in policy on Israeli communities in the biblical heartland! Pray that the Lord will move the hearts of other nations to follow and recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Land. Ask God to protect His people and His Land from any negative ramifications of people who will be angered by this reversal of policy.

Scripture

“No man shall be able to stand against you; the Lord your God will put the dread of you and the fear of you upon all the land where you tread, just as He has said to you.”


- Deuteronomy 11:25

Israel Hosting Largest Event on Anti-Semitism

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Israel’s Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial complex, where the event on anti-Semitism will be held in January 2020

Thursday, 21 November 2019 | Some 30 heads of state from around the world invited by the president will attend the Fifth World Holocaust Forum, taking place on 23 January 2020, at Yad Vashem [Israel’s Holocaust museum] in Jerusalem.

The lead-up to this historic event was officially launched this morning at a press conference, held at the president’s residence in Jerusalem, where President Reuven Rivlin, Foreign Minister Israel Katz, Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev and World Holocaust Forum Foundation President Dr. Moshe Kantor spoke about the importance of the event and the urgent need to fight against anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.

The event, titled “Remembering the Holocaust, Fighting Anti-Semitism,” is being organized by the World Holocaust Forum Foundation, in cooperation with Yad Vashem, under the auspices of the president of the State of Israel.

As the world prepares to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the message will be clear that anti-Semitism has no place in our global society.

[Russian President] Vladimir Putin, [French President] Emmanuel Macron, [German President] Frank-Walter Steinmeier, [Italian President] Sergio Mattarella and [Austrian President] Alexander Van der Bellen are among the leaders who have so far confirmed their attendance of this historic event.

The event takes place against the background of the rise in hateful and violent expressions of anti-Semitism, especially in Europe. Given this alarming situation, efforts to educate about the dangers of anti-Semitism, racism and xenophobia and foster Holocaust commemoration and research have made this event more crucial and relevant than ever.

President of the State of Israel Reuven Rivlin: “In a few weeks I will be joined by heads of states and world leaders, who were invited by the European–Jewish Congress and Yad Vashem to be with me in Jerusalem, to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.

The presidents of Russia, Germany, France, Italy and Austria together with a representative of the United Kingdom and many other leaders, will come to Jerusalem to discuss how we can fight anti-Semitism. We will come together to think about how to pass on Holocaust remembrance to generations who will live in a world without survivors, and what urgent steps we must take to ensure the safety and security of Jews—all around the world.”

Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Israel Katz: “Holding this high-level event in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel, as we mark seventy-five years since the liberation of Auschwitz, has great historical and personal significance. I am the son of Holocaust survivors Meir and Malka Katz, may they rest in peace. My mother Malka Katz was in Auschwitz and was sent on the ‘Death March.’  Since those dark days, we have defended and developed our homeland. Today, the State of Israel is strong and advanced. The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] ensures that the Jewish people will never again stand defenseless against [their] enemies. Even so, anti-Semitism is rising around the world. We see it in violent attacks against Jews, vandalized cemeteries, incitement and the murder of Jews. The international community must unite against the rise of anti-Semitism.”

Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev: “The Holocaust has become a paradigm to measure the human capacity to engage in radical, cruel and systematic evil, not only because of its unprecedented scope—the murder of six million Jewish men, women and children—but also because of the ‘rationale’ behind Nazi ideology—the extermination of the Jewish people as a way to protect their own national interests and that of the “pure German race.” The ability of an advanced society to justify the eradication of an entire people and culture was supported and even encouraged by age-old anti-Semitic tropes, some of which are present in our post-Holocaust global society.”

“Yad Vashem works tirelessly to increase the knowledge and awareness of the history of the Holocaust, not only to ensure that its memory continues to be relevant 75 years after the end of World War II, but also as a tool to fight anti-semitism, racism and xenophobia, alarming phenomena that are on the rise around the world today.”

World Holocaust Forum Foundation Founder and President Dr. Moshe Kantor: “The pledge ‘to remember and never forget’ should be a pledge for all of humanity, and not just for the Jewish people. Jewish life is once again under threat in Europe. It is under threat from the day-to-day harassment and attacks, on the streets, in schools, at universities, online and even in their own homes. It has become so bad that the overwhelming majority of Jews in Europe no longer feel safe.”

“Anti-Semitism is a hatred that knows no boundaries and has been adopted by multiple ideologies. Jews are relentlessly attacked by the Left, the Right and the mainstream. This is another pivotal point in history where the leaders of the world have to stand up and act. Words are not enough, and I conceived of the World Holocaust Forum to be a place where we can create an action plan to aggressively fight back against anti-Semitism.”

Source: (This press release was originally published by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on November 20, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Gary Todd/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Petition the Lord to place His hand of blessing over this event, that it will be fruitful in fighting anti-Semitism and hatred. Be thankful and thank the Lord for the influential world leaders who have already committed to travel to Israel and be part of this important occasion.

Scripture

“I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you…”


- Genesis 12:2–3a

Digital Diplomacy in Action

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Maharashtra is the state spanning west-central India.

Tuesday, 19 November 2019 | The Ministry of Foreign Affairs [MFA] Digital Diplomacy Department is this week hosting a delegation of the state government of Maharashtra for digital diplomacy dialogue and training.

The nascent cooperation between the MFA and the Digital Media Division of the government of Maharashtra, a state of approximately 120 million inhabitants whose capital is the Indian economic center Mumbai, is extremely significant.

We are proud to continue developing and strengthening the cooperation and deep-rooted friendship between Israel and India.​

Source: (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs originally published this article on November 18, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: CC-by-sa PlaneMad/wikimedia.org

Photo License: wikimedia.org

Prayer Focus
Thank the Lord for nations like India who share a cooperation and friendship with Israel. Ask the Lord to bless the cooperation, and pray that He will open the hearts of other nations to bless Israel and be blessed in return.

Scripture

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!


- Psalm 133:1

Iran’s Palestinian Proxies: United Against Israel

by Khaled Abu Toameh~Gatestone Institute

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hamas is worried that another war in the Gaza Strip would spark a renewed wave of protests against corruption and economic hardship, similar to the protests that erupted there in March 2019 (pictured).

Wednesday, 20 November 2019 | Iran’s Palestinian proxies, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad [PIJ], after last week’s round of aggression towards Israel, are said to be at odds with each other. PIJ is reportedly disturbed that Hamas did not join in firing rockets at Israel in retaliation for Israel’s assassination of senior PIJ commander Baha Abu al-Ata in the Gaza Strip. PIJ, it seems, feels that Hamas left them out in the cold.

The two terror groups may not enjoy a full meeting of minds—as witnessed by Hamas’s current failure to bombard Israel with rockets, but these differences are unlikely to escalate into a major confrontation between Hamas and PIJ.

At the end of the day, both groups share the same strategy and goals, as well as the same “enemy”—Israel. They may disagree, but when it comes to waging jihad [“struggle,” Islamic war against unbelievers] and eliminating Israel, Hamas and PIJ always manage to find common ground.

PIJ’s disappointment in Hamas has nothing to do with Hamas’s recognizing Israel’s right to exist and laying down its weapons: Hamas has done neither. Rather, PIJ and its supporters are disappointed because Hamas chose to refrain, this time, from firing rockets into Israel when PIJ was busy doing just that last week.

Hamas, of course, remains committed to its ideology. Its charter, to which it also remains committed, states:

“There is no solution to the Palestinian problem except by jihad. Palestine has been an Islamic Waqf [Muslim religious trust] throughout the generations and until the Day of Resurrection; no one can renounce it or part of it, or abandon it or part of it.”

Hamas’s charter also makes it clear that the terrorist group “views the other Islamic movements with respect and appreciation.” The charter goes on to explain that even when Hamas “differs from them in one aspect or another on one concept or another, it agrees with them on other points and understandings.”

In the past few days, Hamas leaders have been working hard to reassure their friends in PIJ that despite the tensions that erupted between them after the assassination of the PIJ commander, the two groups remain “brothers in blood and weapons.” This position is in total keeping with the spirit of its charter, in which Hamas “prays to Allah for guidance and directions for all, and spares no effort to keep the banner of unity raised.”

The message Hamas leaders have been sending to their friends in PIJ is, in effect: “Although we may disagree on certain issues, we must remain united in order to achieve our main goal—the destruction of Israel.”

PIJ is the second-largest terror group in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

One PIJ official, Ahmed al-Mudalal, described the tensions between his group and Hamas as a “natural quarrel among brothers.”

Al-Mudalal and other PIJ officials predicted that the current tensions with Hamas will soon fade away, paving the road for the two groups to resume their cooperation, particularly in pursuing their jihad against Israel. “What happened between Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad is a passing dark cloud,” the officials said.

In the past few days, both Hamas and PIJ leaders, who seem engaged in a PR campaign to demonstrate that they remain best buddies, clearly reiterated this message.

So far, it seems that the campaign has been partially successful: PIJ appears ready to forgive Hamas for its failure to join the most recent attacks against Israel. Indeed, PIJ officials have communicated to Hamas leaders their desire to end the tensions, the better to unite for the big battle against the “Zionist entity.”

Last week, PIJ members humiliated and expelled a senior Hamas official who came to offer them his condolences over the death of Bahaa Abu al-Ata. The incident, which took place in the Shajaiyeh neighborhood of Gaza City, could well have triggered civil war between Hamas and PIJ.

It did not take long, however, before PIJ officials realized that throwing rocks at the car of a senior Hamas official and chanting slogans calling for the “death of Hamas” could be, shall we say, counterproductive. Not long after the incident, therefore, PIJ officials rushed to the home of Mahmoud Zahar, the Hamas leader, to apologize and beg for forgiveness.

Hamas had good reasons to stay away from the round of fighting between Israel and PIJ.

First, Hamas leaders apparently do not wish to meet the same fate as the PIJ commander, al-Ata, killed in an Israeli air strike. Instead, Hamas leaders most likely want to continue enjoying the good life in the Gaza Strip and Qatar.

Second, Hamas seems to be worried that another war in the Gaza Strip would undermine its regime and spark a renewed wave of protests against corruption and economic hardship, similar to the protests that erupted there in March 2019 which were quickly and brutally crushed by Hamas.

Third, Hamas appears eager to preserve the cease-fire understandings reached with Israel earlier this year under the auspices of Egypt and the United Nations: the move makes excellent financial sense. Israel, in the context of those unwritten understandings, has allowed Qatar to deliver suitcases stuffed with millions of dollars to the Gaza Strip. Hamas presumably wants that cash to continue coming its way.

The thirst for Qatari money notwithstanding, Hamas is hardly on its way to transforming itself into a nonviolent movement that would uphold Israel’s right to exist. Its decision to refrain, this time, from pounding Israel with rockets is in no way a sign of moderation or pragmatism. Instead, the terror group needs a break from the fighting in order to prepare better for its main goal: to take down Israel down, once and for all.

Hamas seeks to ensure that it will remain in power, even if that plan sometimes upsets their friends in PIJ and their patrons in Iran. Hamas leaders—like their PIJ counterparts—are motivated for their own well-being; the well-being of the two million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip is a joke to them. Why else would PIJ endanger their people by forcing Israel to respond to the launching of hundreds of rockets toward Israeli civilian communities?

According to Hamas and PIJ spokesmen, the two terror groups have agreed to lay aside their differences and devote themselves to a unified effort to terrorize Israel into extinction. They are well aware that the Tehran cash cow is unhappy to see its “calves” bickering when they should be working together to bring Israel to its knees.

This is not a good guy/bad guy scenario. Instead, it is a temporary rift between two extremely bad guys, both of whom are wholly committed to destroying Israel, even if that means destroying their own people along the way as well.

Khaled Abu Toameh, an award-winning journalist based in Jerusalem, is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at Gatestone Institute.

Source: (Gatestone Institute originally published this article on November 19, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: i24NEWS English/YouTube/screenshot

Prayer Focus
Plead with the Lord to thwart the evil plans and cooperation of these terrorist organizations against Israel. Beseech Him to protect Israel and the Jewish people from harm at the hands of these terror entities whose goals are the destruction of the Jewish state.

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…For in You, O LORD, I hope; You will hear, O Lord my God.


- Psalm 38:12,15

Jeremy Corbyn Poses a Potent Threat to Western Security

by Con Coughlin~Gatestone Institute

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Labour Party candidate Jeremy Corbyn

Monday, 18 November 2019 | With the British general election now well underway, Britain’s allies need to give serious consideration about how they would deal with Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour party’s hard left candidate, in the event of him becoming prime minister.

The prospect of Corbyn entering Downing Street is of particular concern for the US given the current level of close cooperation that currently exists between Washington and London, especially regarding national security issues.

As one highly influential American security source told me earlier this week, “A Corbyn government would not just be a disaster for Britain. It would be a disaster for the US and other Western allies who work closely with London on a whole range of global security issues.”

One of the pillars of the so-called “special relationship” between London and Washington, for example, are the close ties they share on military and intelligence cooperation. Britain’s nuclear deterrent relies heavily on American technology to enable the Royal Navy’s fleet of specially-adapted submarines to fire Trident missiles armed with nuclear warheads.

It is a similar picture on the intelligence-sharing front, where the close level of cooperation between the American and British intelligence services forms the bedrock of the elite Five Eyes intelligence network, with Canada, Australia and New Zealand being the other members of an alliance that was originally established during the Second World War.

Consequently, serious questions are now being asked in Washington and other key Western capitals about the likely implications of a Corbyn victory in next month’s general election and whether, with the Labour leader resident in Downing Street, they will be able to maintain the same level of military and intelligence-sharing cooperation.

By far the most likely casualty of a Corbyn government would be the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network, where there is a strong likelihood that other member states of the alliance will be deeply reluctant to share highly sensitive material with a British prime minister who has spent his entire political career openly associating with regimes and groups that are utterly hostile to the West and its allies.

From supporting the IRA [Irish Republican Army] at the height of its campaign to kill and maim British troops in Northern Ireland and Britain to, more recently, associating with Islamist terror groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, Corbyn makes no secret of where his true sympathies lie.

It is a similar picture with regard to the Labour leader’s global vision. At the heart of his hard left approach to foreign policy lies a deep hatred for the US and its role in safeguarding the interests of the Western democracies. Thus Corbyn’s instinct is to be more sympathetic to the views of Russia, Iran, North Korea and the Assad regime in Syria than Britain’s long-standing allies in Washington and Europe.

Corbyn’s high regard for the Ayatollahs [Shiite Muslim clerics in Iran] even resulted in his undertaking the controversial role of being a contributor for Press TV, the Iranian-run propaganda channel, where he was paid the equivalent of around US $30,000 until the channel was banned by British regulators for its part in filming the detention and torture of an Iranian journalist. Moreover Corbyn has never apologized for his association with the broadcaster, and claiming his appearances over three years allowed him to raise “a number of important human rights issues.”

Another example of Corbyn’s pro-Iranian bias can be seen in his frequent public association with members of Hezbollah. In a speech made to the British-based Stop the War Coalition, he called members of Hezbollah and Hamas “friends.” Consequently there can be little doubt that, in the disastrous event that he becomes Britain’s next prime minister, he would insist that Britain pursue a far more sympathetic approach to Tehran.

Another area of concern for Britain’s allies would be Corbyn’s close association with other Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. Corbyn has appeared at a number of rallies with Hamas leaders, and his pro-Islamist sympathies were revealed again earlier this week when, speaking on the campaign trail, he criticized US President Trump’s recent special forces operation that resulted in the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, claiming that the US should have made more of an effort to take him alive.

The possibility, therefore, that Corbyn could be Britain’s next prime minister needs to be given serious consideration by the US and other allies. The presence of a hard left leader in Downing Street could have serious implications for the future well-being of the Western alliance.

Con Coughlin is the Telegraph’s Defence and Foreign Affairs Editor and a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Gatestone Institute.

Source: (Excerpt from an article originally published by Gatestone Institute on November 16, 2019. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Jordan Curtis Hughes/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr.com

Prayer Focus
Petition the Lord to block the path of Jeremy Corbyn—who holds the nation of Israel in such low esteem and her enemies in such high esteem. Plead that God will not allow this man into a position of power that will allow him to elevate the position of terrorist organizations and regimes bent on the destruction of Israel and the Jewish people.

Scripture

I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a native green tree. Yet he passed away, and behold, he was no more; indeed I sought him, but he could not be found.


- Psalm 37:35–36

Free Weekly Israel Prayer Update & News



Prayer Updates