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A Light in the Darkness in 2023

Friday, November 3, 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.

Israeli Forces ‘Deep in the Strip at Gates of Gaza City’

by Joshua Marks ~ JNS

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Israeli soldiers operating against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, November 1, 2023.

Friday, 3 November 2023 | Israeli forces have broken through Hamas’s first line of defense and are approaching Gaza City.

Brig. Gen. Itzik Cohen, the commander of the Israel Defense Forces’ [IDF] 162nd Armored Division, aka “the Steel Formation,” told reporters on Wednesday, day 26 of Israel’s “Operation Swords of Iron” to destroy Hamas, that troops are “deep in the Gaza Strip, at the gates of Gaza City.”

IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said that “with advance planning, precise intelligence and joint attacks [from the land, air and sea], our forces broke through Hamas’s front lines of defense in the north of the Gaza Strip.”

The IDF on Thursday announced the death of Lt. Col. Salman Habaka, 33, the commander of the 188th Armored Brigade’s 53rd Battalion, from the Druze village of Yanuh-Jat in the Galilee. He was killed in a battle with Hamas terrorists in the northern Gaza Strip and is the highest-ranking officer killed during the Gaza ground operation.

Earlier on Thursday morning, the IDF announced that Lt. (res.) Yuval Zilber, 25, from Ramat Gan, was killed this week in Gaza. He was a company commander in the Jerusalem Brigade. He was killed in a clash with Hamas gunmen on Wednesday.

They are the 17th and 18th soldiers killed during the Gaza ground offensive. A total of 333 soldiers have been killed since the start of the war.

The IDF also announced on Thursday that three soldiers were seriously wounded in overnight operations in the Strip—a reservist of the 679th Yiftah Brigade, a Givati Brigade infantryman, and a Combat Engineering Corps soldier.

Additionally, a soldier from the Border Defense Force’s Caracal Battalion was seriously wounded in an incident at the Egyptian frontier.

“Dozens” of terrorists were killed overnight Wednesday as Israeli forces continued to strike terrorist infrastructure in the northern Gaza Strip, the IDF said.

Hamas terrorists ambushed soldiers from the Golani Infantry Brigade’s Battalion 13 around midnight. The troops fought them off during intense and chaotic close combat, Army Radio reported on Thursday.

The Hamas gunmen came out of tunnels and attacked the Israeli soldiers with anti-tank missiles, mortars and drones, the report said. The terrorists attempted to enter the armored personnel carriers and take control of them.

Ground soldiers with the help of air and artillery strikes, fought off the terrorists for around three hours, killing 20 terrorists. About 10 managed to escape. No Israeli casualties were reported.

Soldiers from the IDF’s 36th Armored Division in recent days “killed numerous terrorists and directed aircraft strikes on Hamas terror targets, which included both weapons manufacturing and storage facilities, anti-tank missile launching posts, and UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] launching posts,” according to the military.

Army Engineers Begin Destroying Hamas Tunnels

Israeli army engineers on Thursday morning began a massive operation to destroy Hamas tunnels in areas of the Gaza Strip currently under Israeli military control, Walla! reported.

Mine-clearing and tunnel-destroying specialty units have been combined for the operation, which includes the use of robots and explosive devices to demolish the shafts and tunnels, detonate booby traps and kill terrorists.

The forces will also examine the tunnel shafts to see if any of them lead to Gaza City, the epicenter of Hamas.

“We will collapse the shafts and tunnels on them. It will become an extermination ground,” a senior officer in the Southern Command told Walla!

“They made a mistake, they chose a territory from which it is impossible to escape. They will die in the tunnels,” the officer said.

IDF troops have already destroyed some 100 tunnels, the report said.

Hamas Uses 100 Women and Children as Human Shields

Hamas sent a group of around 100 women and children to act as human shields during a battle with Israeli forces on Tuesday at the terror group’s Central Jabaliya Battalion compound.

“We are prepared for more cases of such cynical and blatant use of the population,” an IDF officer told Ynet.

IDF took over the Hamas stronghold in northern Gaza, killing the commander of the Jabaliya Battalion along with a large number of other terrorists.

Two Israeli soldiers were killed as troops were withdrawing after capturing the compound. They were named as Staff Sgt. Roei Wolf, 20, from Ramat Gan; and Staff Sgt. Lavi Lipshitz, 20, from Modi’in. Both served in the Givati Infantry Brigade’s reconnaissance unit. They were the first IDF casualties of the Gaza ground operation.

Israel Demands Red Cross Access to Hostages

Israel’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen spoke on Wednesday with the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Mirjana Spoljaric Egger. Cohen said he had demanded that she immediately visit the hostages in Gaza and provide them with all of the rights that such prisoners are entitled to under international law.

“If the Red Cross fails to visit the hostages, held by the terrorist organization Hamas, it has no reason to exist,” he told her.

“The Red Cross has to act decisively,” he added, “and with all levers of pressure in order to take care of the safety and health of the hostages, among them women, children and Holocaust survivors whom Hamas brutally kidnapped and [which] is against every international norm.”

The Red Cross must focus on the “greatest humanitarian disaster” being wrought by Hamas in Gaza, and not on Israel, “a country that is committed to international law and acts according to it,” said Cohen.

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

Source: IDF/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Cover every detail, person and logistic involved in Operation Swords of Iron with prayer. As the war unfolds and Israel makes steady but costly gains, cry out to the One who created heaven and earth and holds the world in His hands for His cover of protection and peace over the soldiers and civilians of Israel. Pray also that He will draw every heart to Him as the One who cherishes, protects and guides this nation and her people.


O LORD God of hosts, who is mighty like You, O LORD? Your faithfulness also surrounds You. You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, You still them…
You have scattered Your enemies with Your mighty arm.

- Psalm 89:8–9, 10b

Israeli Forces in Gaza Free Captive IDF Soldier

by JNS

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Pvt. Uri Magidish reunited with her family

Tuesday, 31 October 2023 | Israeli ground forces freed a female Israeli soldier on Monday night held hostage by Hamas in the Gaza Strip, the Israel Defense Forces [IDF] said.

Pvt. Ori Megidish was freed after she was kidnapped by the Hamas terrorist organization on October 7, the IDF said.

The military added that she was reunited with her family after a medical exam.

She is home. Hamas abducted Pvt. Megidish on October 7. Last night, she was released during IDF ground operations.

Megidish was among 243 people taken hostage by Hamas during its assault on October 7, which left at least 1,400 people dead and more than 5,000 wounded. The terrorists have released four women.

She had been serving in the IDF’s Nahal Oz Base near the Gaza border as a spotter after enlisting six months ago, Channel 12 reported.

IDF special operations soldiers and Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) agents freed her, Channel 13 reported. Though other members of her unit were also taken hostage, Megidish is believed to have been held alone.

After the news broke of the soldier’s return, celebrations broke out in her hometown of Kiryat Gat in southern Israel.

“Thanks to the Creator of the World, thanks to our soldiers,” Megidish’s aunt said during an emotional interview with Channel 12. “Thank you to the people of Israel…we are very excited.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commended the IDF and Shin Bet on their “important and exciting achievement,” which he said “expresses our commitment to the release of all the hostages.”

“The entire nation of Israel salutes the Shin Bet and salutes the IDF,” commented the premier.

The state will “exhaust every possibility” to bring back the Israelis held hostage by Hamas in Gaza, Netanyahu told relatives of the missing on Saturday.

The meeting in Tel Aviv lasted for some two hours, after which the families participated in a rally demanding the abductees’ return.

On Sunday, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant dismissed a Hamas offer to exchange the Israelis being held in Gaza for thousands of Palestinian terrorists sitting in Israeli prisons as “psychological games.”

“If there is no military pressure on Hamas, nothing will progress,” Gallant told relatives of the hostages, according to a Defense Ministry statement. “The stories published by Hamas are part of its psychological games. Hamas is cynically using those who are dear to us.”

On Monday, Hamas released footage showing three female Israeli hostages. The women in the video are confirmed to be Danielle Aloni, Rimon Kirsht and Lena Trupanob, according to Netanyahu’s office.

The Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem called the video “cruel psychological propaganda by Hamas–ISIS.”

In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Netanyahu appealed to “Lena Trupanob, Danielle Aloni and Rimon Kirsht, who were abducted by Hamas that commits war crimes.”

“I embrace you. Our hearts are with you and the other hostages. We are doing everything to bring all the hostages and missing people home,” wrote the prime minister.

Source: (This article was originally published by Jewish News Syndicate on October 30, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Israel Security Agency/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord that the IDF and Shin Bet were able to free Pvt. Ori Megidish. Pray for a quick and complete recovery from the horrors that she has endured. Continue to cry out that the Lord will shield each of the remaining hostages from any further physical or mental abuse, and plead for their immediate release. Cry out to God for a move of His spirit among the nations, opening people’s eyes to the truth of what Hamas has done and convicting those who have foolishly supported a terrorist organization that slaughters innocent civilians and murders babies.


“Do not be afraid of their faces, for I am with you to deliver you,” says the LORD.

- Jeremiah 1:8

Word Wars: How Word Choice Affects News Coverage

by Kate Norman

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Friday, 27 October 2023 | The ongoing war between Israel and Hamas following the terrorist group’s brutal attack on the Jewish state earlier this month is having ripple effects across the world, as politicians, world leaders, media outlets, activists and laymen all have opinions on the situation.

Tensions are high, and emotions are higher. Now more than ever, word choice is important and language matters.

The Associated Press recently released a guide for journalists and news outlets on how to cover the conflict, and advised against calling Hamas terrorists “terrorists.”

The term is too political, AP argues. “Therefore, the AP is not using the terms for specific actions or groups, other than in direct quotations or when attributed to authorities or others,” the guide says. “Instead, we describe specific atrocities, massacres, bombings, assassinations and other such actions.”

Instead, the AP recommends calling them Hamas “militants,” in accordance with the Webster’s Dictionary definition of militants: “ready and willing to fight; especially, vigorous or aggressive in supporting or promoting a cause…” Other acceptable terms, according to the AP, include “fighters,” “attackers,” or “combatants.”

According to this organization, which sets the standard for the Western media, it is incorrect to call terrorists those who aggressively attacked civilian homes, who killed men, women and children, who kidnapped and dragged more women, children and elderly into captivity in the enclave, who ripped unborn babies out of mothers’ wombs, who beheaded babies, who shot children, and the list of atrocities goes on.

Let’s consult Merriam-Webster again. The definition of a terrorist is “an advocate or practitioner of terrorism as a means of coercion.” Terrorism is defined as “the systematic use of terror, especially as a means of coercion.” Are the atrocities listed above not the definition of terror?

In the same guide, the AP concedes that “Hamas has always espoused violence as a means to liberate occupied Palestinian territories” and that the group has used violent attacks in its self-proclaimed goal to wipe Israel off the map.

The AP also acknowledged that the US State Department, the European Union and other Western countries designate Hamas as a terrorist group.

Yet it’s still inappropriate to identify them as terrorists?

Source: (Bridges for Peace, October 27, 2023)

Photo Credit: Wmpeter649/Wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray that media outlets that use Associated Press stories and other journalists worldwide will push back against this appalling anti-Israel bias. Ask the Lord to remove AP from its position as the one who “sets the narrative” and beseech Him for an end to the media’s obvious and horrifying support for Hamas.


The getting of treasures by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor and a snare of death. The violence of the wicked will sweep them away, because they refuse to do what is just.

- Proverbs 21:6–7 ESV

Iron Dome Heroes: The Soldiers Who Perished Arming Rocket Interceptors

by Yoav Zitun ~ Ynetnews

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An Iron Dome air defense launcher near the town of Sderot (illustrative)

Tuesday, 31 October 2023 | Israel Defense Forces soldiers serving in the Air Defense Command and manning Israel’s missile defense system Iron Dome have continued to perform admirably in Israel’s war against Hamas. However, for the first time since its establishment in 2011, the unit has lost three of its soldiers in an operation.

October 7 was a routine morning for soldiers in the Air Defense Command’s Southern Brigade, who are deployed near the Gaza border. Sgt. A., a soldier who completed the interception course only two months ago, sat at the control center with his commander, Capt. Sahar Saudian, a 21-year-old from Rosh Ha’ayin.

Unlike in previous incidents, no one in the Southern Command’s intelligence unit knew to alert the units about Hamas’s suspicious activity within the Gaza Strip.

Nevertheless, the Air Defense Command soldiers maintained their usual alertness and were keeping their eyes on the interceptors’ monitors at 4:00 a.m., which showed no signs of anything wrong. Until 6:28 a.m.

“It was the most fun weekend at the Iron Dome battery, with a dinner that Sahar arranged for all of us on Thursday evening,” recalled Sgt. A. “On Friday evening, I played board games with her, we laughed and went to sleep in preparation for the morning shift, in the same regular routine that we usually follow.”

Hell From Above

And then, in an instant, everything changed. Saudian first spotted the volley of rockets emerging from the Gaza Strip—in every possible direction. In one hand, she and A. operated launching the intercepting missiles against the numerous rockets, and with the other hand, she shouted over the battery’s intercom to get the soldiers into positions.

“What I saw on the screens and what I heard outside, as the firing was directed toward us as well, seemed to me like the large-scale exercises we practiced,” A. said. “This was my first time facing real missile launches, and Sahar quickly reassured me, placed her hand on my shoulder, and gave me the strength I needed to intercept the rockets in those initial minutes. I didn’t leave the interception command until very late in the morning.”

The quick response by Saudian and Sgt. A., along with the rest of the battery soldiers who took defensive positions, apparently prevented additional casualties, as Israelis woke up to rocket sirens on October 7. The Israeli Air Force (IAF) reported that the unit’s operation, especially in the first hour, prevented dozens of rocket impacts and hundreds of casualties.

As time passed, the battle for interception intensified as barrages of dozens of rockets kept coming. “Sahar proved herself fully in her first real test as an officer. She approached every soldier who rushed to their positions, making sure they were okay. She calmed us down and handled the incident as the most senior officer in the battery,” Maj. Dana, the battery’s commanding officer, said. “It was also the first rocket attack she experienced as a soldier and as a commander. We all worked tirelessly.”

As the most senior officer present at the battery until the arrival of the other commanders, Saudian realized during the first hour of the attack that, while the unit had already intercepted hundreds of rockets, even more would be launched as time passed. At 7:16 a.m., she wrote in the battery commanders’ shared group chat: “Everything is under control. Stay calm, we’re keeping you safe.”

Despite initial reports saying Hamas terrorists had infiltrated Israel, Saudian knew the Iron Dome interceptor missiles could soon run out for other batteries stationed near the Gaza border. Working according to military operational procedure, she volunteered to head out and provide ammunition to other Iron Dome batteries.

Sgt. Binyamin Gabriel and Sgt. Nativ Kuzaro, each equipped with a helmet and light army vest, followed their commander, rushing to other Iron Dome interceptors on a military vehicle.

“At around 10:30 a.m., Sahar and her team stopped responding. They encountered Hamas terrorists who opened fire on their vehicle. All three of them were killed. We didn’t know this until Monday,” recounted Maj. Dana.

The Iron Dome battery’s soldiers and officers had to continue their mission as thousands of rockets were fired toward Israel on Saturday and Sunday, but the concern for Sahar, Nativ and Binyamin’s lives continued to grow.

A Desperate Search

It was still chaos near the Gaza border and the Iron Dome battery sites when Maj. Dana decided to head out in search of Saudian and her team, even though she knew terrorists were still hiding in the area. “I found their vehicle overturned by the side of the road, with ZAKA [volunteer search and rescue organization] body bags and equipment laying there. Their weapons were gone,” she said.

“I called the central location where all the bodies were collected, and they couldn’t tell me if Sahar’s team was there or injured. I felt I had to give answers to their families and my soldiers. The scene was gruesome with signs of gunfire and blood on the vehicle, on a deserted road with other damaged vehicles scattered all over,” she added.

“On the way back to the battery, I had many thoughts about what to say and what not to say to the soldiers, who needed to stay focused on their mission, but still cared deeply about their commander and their two friends, Binyamin and Nativ,” she recounted.

Maj. Dana made a difficult decision after consulting with her commanding officer not to inform her hundreds of soldiers about what she saw and what she feared might have happened.

“Both me and the commanding officer were quiet during our talk, and their bodies were only identified on Wednesday or Thursday, due to the heavy load on body identification teams. I had to inform the soldiers, that Nativ, Binyamin and Sahar had been killed. We all had hope in those first few days that maybe they were alive somewhere and had survived,” she said.

At the Iron Dome battery, soldiers have arranged a memorial for the unit’s first three fallen soldiers in operational activity, with the rear part of an intercepting missile, on which a personal dedication was written for each of them. Alongside the missile stands a large piece of a Hamas rocket, which Saudian and Sgt. A. intercepted in the first hour of the war.

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on October 30, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: NatanFlayer/Wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray for the friends and families of Capt. Sahar Saudian, Sgt. Binyamin Gabriel and Sgt. Nativ Kuzaro, who, like so many in Israel, are mourning the loss of their loved ones. Pray also for the Air Defense Command’s Southern Brigade who lost fellow soldiers and friends. Pray also for all the Iron Dome batteries that are so critical to Israel’s defense and for the soldiers who serve in the Air Defense Command. Pray that each Iron Dome will have ample ammunition, will be protected and will be successful in protecting the people of Israel.


“To console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.” They shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations.

- Isaiah 61:3–4

Hamas Vows: We’ll Repeat October 7 Until Israel Is Annihilated

by JNS

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Hamas politburo member Ghazi Hamad

Thursday, 2 November 2023 | Senior Hamas official Ghazi Hamad told Lebanon’s LBC TV on October 24 that the terror group would continue to carry out massacres like the one it carried out in southern Israel on October 7 until the Jewish state is destroyed.

“Israel is a country that has no place on our land. We must remove that country because it constitutes a security, military and political catastrophe to the Arab and Islamic nation, and must be finished,” said Hamad, according to a translation of the interview provided by the Middle East Media Research Institute.

“We are not ashamed to say this, with full force,” he added.

Israel’s existence was “illogical,” he said, adding, “The existence of Israel is what causes all that pain, blood and tears.”

“The al-Aqsa Flood [Hamas’s name for the October 7 mass terror attack] is just the first time, and there will be a second, a third, a fourth, because we have the determination, the resolve and the capabilities to fight,” said Hamad.

He reiterated Hamas’s false claim that the terror group had not intended to harm civilians, stating that the October 7 assault had been “complicated.”

With regard to Israel’s response to the massacre, which has caused the deaths of many civilians in Gaza, Hamad said, “Will we have to pay a price? Yes, and we are ready to pay it. We are called a nation of martyrs, and we are proud to sacrifice martyrs.”

Hamad’s remarks echoed those of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, who said in an address broadcast by Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen on October 26 that “the blood of the women, children and elderly […] we are the ones who need this blood, so it awakens within us the revolutionary spirit, so it awakens with us resolve.”

Hamas, according to Hamad, are “victims of the occupation. Period.” Therefore, he said, “Nobody should blame us for the things we do. On October 7, October 10, October 1,000,000—everything we do is justified.”

On October 7, Hamas forces invaded southern Israel under the cover of massive rocket barrages, killing at least 1,400 people, the majority of them civilians, including women, children, the infants and the elderly, and wounding more than 5,000. More than 240 people were taken back to the Gaza Strip as hostages.

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

Photo Credit: Screenshot/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Pray that the Lord and His heavenly armies will fight for Israel, strengthening every soldier on the ground, in the air or on the sea, blessing them with courage, determination and stamina. Seek His face and cry out for the success of Israel’s mission to rid His land of those who are committed to repeating their onslaught of terror again and again. Also pray again against the deception that has engulfed so many in the nations, blinding them to Hamas’s stated goals to mercilessly slaughter Jews until Israel is no more.


And he shall say to them, “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

Israel Blasts UN Resolution with no Mention of Hamas, Hostages

by JNS

by Gili Yaari /Flash90/jns.org

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Holocaust survivor holds a poster of her grandson, whom Hamas holds captive in Gaza.

Monday, 30 October 2023 | Israel denounced as “despicable” a resolution the United Nations [UN] General Assembly approved on Friday calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza but making no mention of Hamas or the fact that the Islamist terror organization is holding hundreds of hostages in the Strip.

The nonbinding resolution, which passed by a vote of 120-14 with 45 abstentions, calls for the release of all civilians, the protection of civilians and international institutions and ensuring the safe passage of humanitarian aid into the Strip.

It omits any mention of Hamas, which murdered more than 1,400 Israelis in the worst one–day massacre of the Jewish people since the Holocaust, or the roughly 230 people taken hostage to Gaza, including dozens of foreign nationals.

Foreign Minister Eli Cohen decried the “despicable” resolution and said that “Israel intends to eliminate Hamas just as the world dealt with the Nazis and ISIS.”

Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan also dismissed the resolution, adding that Israel would continue to defend itself.

“This is a dark day for the UN and for mankind,” Erdan said, vowing Israel will use “every means” in fighting Hamas.

“Today is a day that will go down as infamy. We have all witnessed that the UN no longer holds even one ounce of legitimacy or relevance,” he added.

Hamas praised the resolution, which was introduced by Jordan and called for its immediate implementation, including the clause calling for the entry of fuel and relief materials for civilians in the Gaza Strip.

The Vote

Fourteen countries voted against the resolution: Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Fiji, Guatemala, Hungary, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Tonga and the United States.

The resolution was supported by Western countries whose leaders recently paid solidarity trips to Israel, including France, while others, including Germany, the UK, Greece and Cyprus abstained.

The 45 countries that abstained also included Australia, Canada, Finland, India, Iraq, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Sweden, Tunisia and Ukraine.

Belgium, Ireland, Norway and Switzerland were among the European nations that voted in favor.

US Condemns Vote

In a speech ahead of the vote, US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield blasted the Jordanian initiative for neglecting to mention Hamas.

“It is outrageous that this resolution fails to name the perpetrators of the October 7 terrorist attacks: Hamas,” Thomas Greenfield said, noting that there is also no reference to hostages.

Canada had sought to have an amendment added to include a condemnation of Hamas. Most members backed the proposal, but it fell short of the two–thirds majority needed to be adopted.

Source: (This article was originally published by Jewish News Syndicate on October 29, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today.)

Prayer Focus
Pray that the Lord will deal swiftly and severely with this organization whose stated purpose for being is to create the “one place on Earth where all the world’s nations can gather together, discuss common problems, and find shared solutions that benefit all of humanity,” while demonizing Israel at a time when the nation reels from the worst, most horrific atrocities Jews have faced since the Holocaust and at the same time shielding from any blame the terrorist organization that continues to perpetrate such atrocities. Thank the Lord for those nations that voted against this disgraceful resolution and pray that He will bless them richly.


Do not keep silent, O God! Do not hold Your peace, and do not be still, O God! For behold, Your enemies make a tumult; and those who hate You have lifted up their head. They have taken crafty counsel against Your people, and consulted together against Your sheltered ones. They have said, “Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation, that the name of Israel may be remembered no more.” For they have consulted together with one consent.

- Psalm 83:1–5a

Jerusalem Terror Attack: Police Officer Injured

by Kate Norman

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The Shivtei Israel light rail station in Jerusalem

Tuesday, 31 October 2023 | An Israeli Police officer was seriously injured in a stabbing attack on Monday near the Shivtei Israel light rail station in Jerusalem.

The terrorist who stabbed the officer was chased down by security forces and neutralized near the Jerusalem district court, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The officer, a 22-year-old man, was evacuated to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital with stab wounds in his upper body, according to the Magen David Adom (MDA), Israel’s ambulance service.

He is in stable condition, an MDA medic told Israel’s Channel 12 news.

This attack came amid the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas, the terrorist group that controls the Gaza Strip. Hamas launched an vicious attack earlier this month that left more than 1,400 people—mostly civilians—dead.

The first police officer to arrive on the scene of the terror attack yesterday was the father of a 30-year-old woman who was murdered by Hamas during the October 7 attack, according to the Jewish Breaking News channel on Telegram.

The police officer, Meir Gavai, had just joined the Jerusalem police last week after coming to Israel’s capital from Sderot.

The last terror attack in Jerusalem took place on October 12, when a terrorist shot two police officers near the Damascus Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem. One of the officers was lightly wounded and another seriously wounded, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The terrorist was shot and killed by police officers at the station.

Hamas has called for Arabs—not just those in Gaza but in Jerusalem and the heart of Israel—to join the war against Israel and spill more Jewish blood.

Join us in prayer that Arabs everywhere will not head that call to hatred, but rather see the truth that it is Hamas, not Israel, that is responsible for the bloodshed and violence.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, October 31, 2023)

Photo Credit: יעקב/Wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray for all three of these heroic officers whose lives are on the line constantly. Ask the Lord for healing, strength and resolve to return to their positions and continue the fight against terror. Pray that Arabs throughout Israel and the world “will not heed that call to hatred, but rather see the truth that it is Hamas, not Israel, that is responsible for the bloodshed and violence.”


He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.

- Psalm 107:20

Hamas Chief: We’re Not Responsible for Protecting our Civilians

by Kate Norman

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IDF soldiers uncover terror tunnel in Gaza.

Thursday, 2 November 2023 | A senior member of Hamas’s political bureau said in an interview that the terror group ruling the Gaza Strip is not responsible for protecting its civilians. Who is then, you may ask. According to Hamas, the United Nations [UN] and Israel shoulder that responsibility.

Moussa Abu Marzouk declared during an interview on Russia Today’s Arabic channel that Hamas built tunnels in Gaza to protect themselves from the Israeli military, adding that the terror group fights from inside the tunnels. Excerpts from the interview were translated into English by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

He was asked why Hamas built 500 kilometers (310 mi.) of tunnels and not bomb shelters for civilians.

“Everybody knows that 75% of the people in the Gaza Strip are refugees,” Marzouk responded, “and it is the responsibility of the UN to protect them.”

It’s not the responsibility of Hamas, the group in control of every aspect of life in the Gaza Strip since 2007, according to Marzouk.

Gaza receives billions of dollars annually from the international community. UN agencies provided nearly US $4.5 billion in aid for Gaza from 2014–2020, the Times of Israel reported. Qatar by 2021 had provided US $1.3 billion since 2012.

But this is the responsibility of the UN in addition to providing bomb shelters for Gaza civilians, according to Marzouk, freeing up Hamas to continue pouring its resources into its declared goal of wiping Israel off the map.

“According to the Geneva Conventions,” Marzouk added, “it is the responsibility of the occupation [Israel] to provide them with all the services as long as they are under occupation.”

Until the ground invasion began over the weekend to wipe out Hamas, Israel maintained no presence in the enclave, civilian or military. Yet the Jewish state is responsible for meeting the needs of the 2.1 million people in Gaza under Hamas rule?

After Hamas’s brutal October 7 attack on Israel in which more than 1,400 people were killed and an estimated 240 hostages taken to the enclave, Israel shut down its supplies of electricity and water to Gaza. Some of that supply has been reopened, however.

Before the October 7 massacre, Israel provided Gaza with 18 million cubic meters (18 billion liters) of water per year, the Times of Israel reported, and provided for 50% of the Strips’ electricity.

But this is Israel’s responsibility, Marzouk claims, even while terrorists in Gaza continue launching rockets at Israeli civilians, with nearly 9,000 rockets launched so far—and counting.

Amid Israel’s responsive operation in Gaza, Hamas refuses to protect the innocent civilians in the Strip. But there is someone who does try to protect them: Israel.

The Israeli military, even while conducting a ground operation and frequent air strikes against Hamas terror targets in the enclave, goes out of its way to protect the people of Gaza, urging them to evacuate certain areas, warning them with texts and phone calls, and even calling off strikes when they discover civilians in the area.

Hamas, meanwhile, uses its own people as human shields. The terror group builds tunnels under civilian zones, including schools, hospitals and mosques. Hamas launches rockets toward Israel from these civilian areas. Hamas stopped people from evacuating when Israel warned them to leave certain areas of the enclave.

Hamas will stop at nothing in its frenzy for Jewish blood, even to the detriment of its own people. But according to Moussa Abu Marzouk, the people in Gaza are not Hamas’s responsibility anyway.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 2, 2023)

Photo Credit: Matanya/IDF/Wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord for an end to Hamas’s reign of terror in Gaza. Ask Him to stop the flow of billions of dollars meant to benefit the people of Gaza but is used instead to build infrastructure and supply weapons to terrorists who are bent on the destruction of Israel. Beseech the Lord to remove the blinders from the eyes of those nations who are funding the slaughter of innocent people, including Gazans who are being used as human shields.


Then the LORD will be seen over them, and His arrow will go forth like lightning. The Lord GOD will blow the trumpet, and go with whirlwinds from the south. The LORD of hosts will defend them.

- Zechariah 9:14–15a