Arutz Sheva Daily Israel Report
Delivered Daily via Email, Sunday thru Friday Subscribe to this Daily Israel Report:
Sunday, Dec. 23 ’12, Tevet 10, 5773
1. ARAB ‘TAXI TERRORIST’ RUNS OVER POLICEMAN 2. CAIRO COURT TO RULE ON MUBARAK APPEAL OF LIFE SENTENCE 3. PA ARAB VIOLENCE AT BEIT UMMAR, IDF SOLDIER WOUNDED 4. SYRIA’S CHEMICAL WEAPONS SECURE, SAYS ISRAELI DEFENSE EXPERT 5. HAMAS PREPARING FOR WAR AGAINST ABBAS, REPORTS SUNDAY TIMES 6. FOREIGN MINISTRY RUSHES TO APOLOGIZE OVER ‘JESUS’ POST 7. WHEN THE FAR LEFT CALLS FOR MODEST CLOTHING 8. SEA OF GALILEE RISES BY 7 INCHES IN DAY
1. ARAB ‘TAXI TERRORIST’ RUNS OVER POLICEMAN by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Jerusalem police shot and wounded a Jerusalem Arab taxi driver-turned terrorist Sunday morning after he ran into a Border Police officer, wounding him in his leg.
The driver, approximately age 21, approached a police station in Jabel Mukaber, in the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood near Talpiot.
After the taxi cab hit a supply truck at the entrance to the police station, a Border Police officer began talking to the driver, who then put the cab in reverse and then back into the drive position, aiming at the Border Police officer.
Jerusalem police at the scene immediately opened fire.
Both the Border Police officer and the taxi driver were taken to hospitals for medical care. The driver said as he was entering the hospital, “I went crazy. I wanted to die.”
An eyewitness at the scene, Oved Arad, told Arutz Sheva that uncontrolled crimes in the area have encouraged criminals to become terrorists.
Arad, who works with the Regavim organization that fights against for rights of Jews to build and campaigns against illegal building by Arabs, said, “We have been complaining for a long time about the abandonment of the problem of illegal building in eastern Jerusalem.
“It is impossible not to be surprised when criminal activity turns into terrorism.”
Regavim has called on the government to restore sovereignty over all of Jerusalem.
There has been an increase in terror attacks on Jews in the area the past two years, with dozens of near-deaths as a result of Arabs blocking narrow streets and attacking Jews with rocks and clubs.
2. CAIRO COURT TO RULE ON MUBARAK APPEAL OF LIFE SENTENCE by Chana Ya’ar
A Cairo court will review the appeal by former President Hosni Mubarak of a sentence condemning him to life in prison for the 2011 deaths of protesters who deposed him.
Some 850 demonstrators died in the January 25 Revolution that began in Cairo’s Tahrir Square and ended up sweeping away Mubarak’s 31-year reign over Egypt.
Mubarak and former Interior Minister Habib al-Adli were sentenced to life in prison after having been held responsible for the deaths of the protesters in the revolution.
Security forces became increasingly brutal in their use of force as the mob increased both in numbers and intensity, eventually beating protesters and firing into the crowds.
A court source said a ruling on the appeals of both men would be handed down on January 13. If accepted for review, both will be retried.
Mubarak has suffered from serious health problems for years. He had a major heart attack after being sentenced to life in prison, and both his attorneys and family have pleaded with the new regime for leniency over his health.
Mubarak was transferred to a military hospital in Cairo last Wednesday after stumbling in the shower and sustaining injuries a few days earlier. Mubarak, 84, was reportedly being treated and was to be returned to the prison once his health had improved.
Egyptian media has reported that current Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is suffering from a brain tumor. The Al-Wafed newspaper said in its report last week that although the tumor in his brain is currently small, it is spreading and Morsi must have it removed by the end of January.
3. PA ARAB VIOLENCE AT BEIT UMMAR, IDF SOLDIER WOUNDED by Chana Ya’ar
Palestinian Authority Arabs clashed with Israeli troops Saturday in a rock attack near the Judean village of Beit Ummar. An IDF officer suffered a head injury when he was struck by one of the stones hurled by the rioting Arabs.
IDF soldiers responded with gunfire aimed at the legs of those who were trying to prevent medical crews from evacuating the injured officer, according to the IDF.
One of the rioting Arabs sustained a gunshot wound in the leg while attempting to block medics from reaching the wounded IDF officer.
Both the IDF officer and the PA Arab attacker were taken to nearby hospitals for medical treatment.
Beit Ummar is a PA Arab village that has long been a hotbed of anti-Israel sentiment and terrorism. The village is located along the southern leg of the Highway 60 north-south artery that runs from the southern Hevron Hills through the Samaria (Shomron) region.
A young woman was hospitalized two weeks ago for head injuries after a metal cylinder was hurled through the window of the car her husband was driving.
The woman was injured when the window, on her side of the car, was smashed. She has since been released from the hospital but still suffers from pain and trauma.
Three weeks ago, an Israeli driver was also lightly wounded when she came under attack by PA Arabs hurling stones at her vehicle as she drove past Beit Ummar on a Friday afternoon.
The driver was able to make it past the danger zone and into the nearby Jewish town of Karmei Tzur, where she was treated by IDF medics.
In October, Israeli security forces arrested two fugitive PA Arab men in Beit Ummar with ties to the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization.
4. SYRIA’S CHEMICAL WEAPONS SECURE, SAYS ISRAELI DEFENSE EXPERT by Chana Ya’ar
According to Defense Ministry military expert Amos Gilad, for the moment, there appears to be a balance of power between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and opposition forces.
It is that delicate balance that is keeping the chemical weapons in check, Gilad told listeners in an interview broadcast Sunday morning on IDF Army Radio.
“Suppose he (Assad) does leave,” said Gilad. “There could be chaos… In the Middle East, you never know who will come instead.
“We need to stay level-headed; the entire world is dealing with this,” Gilad pointed out, but added, “At the moment, chemical weapons are under control.”
Nevertheless, Assad’s forces are slowly losing ground, and rebel forces are gaining territory by the day.
But the rebel forces are fragmented – they are split into two major factions, one of which is a radical Islamist coalition. The other is comprised of various groups that have banded together but which are various sects that range in observance from completely secular to moderately observant Muslim, or Christian.
At some point, they may begin to also fight each other. But for now, they are still united against a common enemy: Assad.
“The opposition is not managing to defeat him, and he is not defeating the opposition, though more and more parts of Syria are no longer under his control, and that is what matters,” Gilad said.
5. HAMAS PREPARING FOR WAR AGAINST ABBAS, REPORTS SUNDAY TIMES by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Hamas is preparing to duplicate its 2007 civil war in Gaza and has instructed terror cells in Judea and Samaria to get ready for a military coup to oust Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, according to a London Sunday Times based on Israeli intelligence sources.
The orders reportedly came from Hamas” supreme leader Khaled Mashaal, who recently visited Gaza to celebrate what the terrorist organization claimed was a victory over Israel in last month”s missile war.
Citing unnamed officials in the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet), the London newspaper said that Iran is behind the plan for a coup. According to the Sunday Times, Iran wants to have an allied militia in Judea and Samaria, parallel to Hamas in Gaza and Hizbullah in Lebanon.
Tawfik Tirawi, a former PA intelligence director and now a senior member of Abbas” Fatah party, told the newspaper, “Hamas wants intifada and will take over the West Bank.
“We”re on the verge of catastrophe,” he said.
“Bibi [Netanyahu] understands the geopolitical changes in the Middle East. No way would [he] give up an inch of the West Bank – he is convinced that the intelligence assessment about a Muslim Brotherhood [Hamas] takeover is solid,” according to the London newspaper.
The report provides evidence that Prime Minister Netanyahu is making it clear that Israel is not to be shown as being weak. The intelligence information may have been one of the reasons, if not the major cause, for his recent and unusually solid nationalist statements for building new homes for Jews in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.
It also contradicts mainstream media claims that Netanyahu’s statements were part of an election campaign to attract nationalists away from the Jewish Home party.
The information published in London totally eliminates the idea promoted by leftist commentators that Netanyahu”s” policies are designed to strengthen Hamas at the expense of Abbas, who has advertised himself as a “peace partner.” Abbas has won international support for demands that preclude negotiations on future borders while at the same time promoting unity with Hamas.
6. FOREIGN MINISTRY RUSHES TO APOLOGIZE OVER ‘JESUS’ POST by Gil Ronen
The Foreign Ministry has launched a probe into the posting of a Facebook message by the Israel embassy in Ireland that said if Jesus and Mary were alive today in Bethlehem, they would probably be lynched by local Arabs.
Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said, “We all agree that it was improper, inappropriate.” He said Tuesday that it wasn’t clear who posted the message.
The post included a picture of Jesus and Mary accompanied by a message saying, “A thought for Christmas … If Jesus and Mother Mary were alive today, they would, as Jews without security, probably end up being lynched in Bethlehem by hostile Palestinians. Just a thought …”
The embassy removed the message a few hours after it was posted and issued an apology, saying, “To whom it may concern, an image of Jesus and Mary with a derogatory comment about Palestinians was posted without the consent of the administrator of the Facebook page. We removed the post in question immediately. Apologies to anyone who may have been offended. Merry Christmas!”
In its rush to apologize, the Foreign Ministry made no mention of the fact that the Palestinian Authority’s Minister of Prisoners said in November that Jesus was “the first Palestinian and the first [Islamic] martyr in history.”
Similar statements have been made in the past by PA officials and propagandists. These statements carry clear a anti-Semitic message, blaming “the Jews” for killing Jesus, who was himself a Jew, as were his disciples, while mendaciously claiming that Jesus was a “Palestinian” millennia before the term even existed. No denunciations, by Israel or other countries, are known to have been issued, and the PA certainly made no apologies.
The Foreign Ministry also did not mention the fact that Christians have been violently and sadistically persecuted in the PA, and that areas under PA control have seen massive emigration of Christians. In Bethlehem, the Christian population reportedly went from a 60 percent majority in 1990 to a 40 percent minority in 2000, to about 15 percent of the city’s total population in 2008.
International human rights lawyer Justus Reid Weiner, who teaches at Hebrew University, told the Jerusalem Institute for Global Jewish Affairs that, under the PA-Fatah regime, Christian Arabs have been victims of frequent human rights abuses by Muslims.
“There are many examples of intimidation, beatings, land theft, firebombing of churches and other Christian institutions, denial of employment, economic boycotts, torture, kidnapping, forced marriage, sexual harassment, and extortion,” he said. PA officials are directly responsible for many of the attacks, and some Muslims who have converted to Christianity have been murdered.
7. WHEN THE FAR LEFT CALLS FOR MODEST CLOTHING by Maayana Miskin
While the Israeli left has been extremely critical of hareidi Jews who pressure others to dress modestly, it turns out that sometimes the left supports modest dress. The extreme-left Magazine Hakibush (Occupation Magazine) recently called on its readers to dress modestly and respect community norms – when visiting Palestinian Authority Arab areas.
The magazine called on readers to join Arabs in the Hevron hills, and added, “Remember to bring your ID card, water, a hat, and modest clothing that respects the sensitivities of the Palestinians.”
The appeal mentioned shorts and sleeveless shirts as two things that should not be worn.
The planned visit to the Hevron hills area is part of an ongoing campaign. While far-left and anarchist groups say the purpose of the campaign is to help Arab farmers fight for their rights, Jews living in the region say the campaign deliberately foments conflict.
“We had discussions and agreements with the Arabs. There was co-existence and dialogue, but since the leftist activists entered the picture, everything has changed,” residents of the area told Arutz Sheva in a 2010 interview.
Far-left groups claim to be helping Arab farmers to cultivate their own land. However, local Jews say, in reality they target plots of land within Jewish communities that were not previously cultivated by Arab farmers.
8. SEA OF GALILEE RISES BY 7 INCHES IN DAY by Gil Ronen
The Kinneret, or Sea of Galilee, rose by a whopping 18 centimeters (7 inches) in the course of Saturday, and is now only 3.21 meters short of the maximum level, at which authorities allow its water to flow southward, into the Jordan River and Dead Sea.
Since Thursday, the Kinneret’s level has risen by 24 cm (9.5 inches), and it is expected to rise further in the next 24 hours. The Water Authority said that the rise sets a 10-year record for the month of December in the last ten years.
The head of the Kinneret Administration, Pinchas Green, told Arutz Sheva, “There has not been such a meaningful rise in such a short time for many years, and certainly not at this time of year. Usually it starts rising from mid-December, and this year the rise started as early as November.”
Green noted that the soil became saturated at an early stage, causing the flooding to begin early as well. The soil requires about 150 mm of rain in order to reach saturation.
He explained that since Thursday, there has been heavy rain in all of the regions from which water flows to the Kinneret: Kiryat Shmona, the Golan Heights, the Naftali Mountains, Merom Hagalil and the Upper Galilee.
Green is not certain that the Kinneret will reach its topmost level this winter, but he noted that the Kinneret rose by 4.7 meters in the winter of 2003, and that it rose by 4 meters in 1992, with another 1.5 meters being allowed to flow out to the Dead Sea.
“Let us hope that the seven bad years are over and that we are approaching the seven good years,” he said. “Perhaps this winter will provide a pleasant surprise.”
Subscribe to this Daily Israel Report: