JNN News Update March 24, 2017

FIVE DEAD, 40 INJURED IN UK PARLIAMENT TERRORIST ATTACK: Five people were killed and 40 injured in London on Wed. 22 March 2017, after a car plowed into pedestrians and an Islamist-inspired attacker stabbed a policeman close to Britain's parliament. The dead, in what police called a "marauding terrorist attack," included the assailant and the policeman he stabbed. The other three victims were among those hit by the car as it sped across Westminster Bridge before crashing into railings just outside parliament. Mark Rowley, Britain's most senior counter-terrorism officer, told reporters the attack started when a car was driven over Westminster Bridge, hitting and injuring members of the public and three police officers. "A car then crashed near to parliament and at least one man, armed with a knife, continued the attack and tried to enter parliament," Rowley said. PM Theresa May condemned the attack as “sick and depraved”. "The terrorist chose to strike at the heart of our capital city, where people of all nationalities, religions and cultures come together to celebrate the values of liberty, democracy and freedom of speech." Any attempt to defeat those values through violence was "doomed to failure", May said. It was the deadliest attack in London since four British Islamists killed 52 commuters and themselves in suicide bombings on the city's transport system in July 2005, in London's worst peacetime attack. It took place on the first anniversary of attacks by Islamist terrorists that killed 32 people in Brussels. (Reuters) Pray for the swift and complete recovery of those who have suffered injuries and shock in this attack, and for the comforting of those who have lost family members and friends.

JEWISH STATE ‘STANDS AS ONE WITH THE BRITISH PEOPLE’ IN FIGHT AGAINST TERRORISM: Israel “stands as one with the British people as we all work together to defeat the scourge of terrorism,” the Jewish state’s UN envoy Danny Danon declared on Wed. 22 March 2017, following the ramming and stabbing attack outside the UK Parliament building in central London in which five people were killed and dozens wounded. “We send our condolences and wish a speedy recovery to all those injured,” Danon stated. Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said, “Israel expresses its deep shock at the terror attack in London today and its solidarity with the victims and with the people and government of Great Britain. Terror is terror wherever it occurs and we will fight it relentlessly.” President Reuven Rivlin tweeted, “Our thoughts are with the people of London. Terror is a threat to us all and we must stand united against it.” PM Benjamin Netanyahu, who wrapped up his multi-day trip to China on Wed., did not issue an immediate statement, as he was aboard a flight back to Israel as the news of the attack broke. Israeli Opposition Leader Isaac Herzog whose father Chaim Herzog served in the British Army during World War II, before going on to become the president of Israel, said, “My thoughts are with the British people, following the terrible events at Westminster today. I wish a speedy recovery to all those injured.” (Algemeiner)

EIGHT ARRESTED IN VEHICLE RAMMING ATTACK IN LONDON – ISIS CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY: British police arrested eight people in London and Birmingham after a vehicle ramming attack that killed five people, and wounded dozens. The attacker was shot dead after he stabbed and killed a British police officer. British MP’s returned to work on Thurs. a day after the attacker ran down several pedestrians on nearby Westminster Bridge. He then charged at a policeman at the parliament gates stabbing him to death with a large knife. Trucks were used in attacks in crowds in Nice last July, when a truck killed 86 people, and in a Berlin Christmas market attack that killed 12. Vehicles have also been used in several attacks in Israel, most recently when a Palestinian drove his truck into a group of Israeli soldiers in Jan. 2017, killing four. Terrorism experts say that vehicle attacks can cause a lot more deaths than a knife. Also on Thurs, ISIS claimed responsibility for the London assault. A source told the ISIS-associated Amak news agency, "It was a soldier of ISIS who responded to the call to harm the citizens of the countries that are members of the international coalition." PM Theresa May confirmed that the attacker was British-born and was once investigated by MI5 intelligence agents over concerns about violent extremism. (Medialine)

LEADERS OF THE LONDON’S JEWISH COMMUNITY TELL MEMBERS TO BE CAUTIOUS IN THE COMING DAYS, IN THE AFTERMATH OF TERROR ATTACK: The Community Security Trust the UK’s main watchdog group on anti-Semitism, called on the Jewish community to be “calm, vigilant and to cooperate with security measures.” Additional police patrols were visible in London neighborhoods with large Jewish populations, such as Stamford Hill. UK Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis said: “Today’s attack, which targeted the very heart of our democracy in Westminster, will serve only to unite us against the scourge of violence and terrorism. The prayers of the Jewish community are with the families of the victims and with our security services, who so often selflessly place themselves in harm’s way for our protection.”

The European Jewish Congress (EJC) also strongly condemned the terror attack in London. “This strike, at the heart of democracy, on the anniversary of the Brussels attacks which claimed the lives of 32 people, once again demonstrates that radical extremists continue to have the ability and motivation to commit mass murder in Europe,” said President of the EJC, Dr. Moshe Kantor. “The European Jewish Congress and the Jewish communities of Europe extend our deepest condolences to the British Government and people and pray for the welfare of those injured." The World Jewish Congress (WJC) also slammed the attacks as "A callous and calculated strike against democracy and liberty which won’t succeed. Once again, we must all stand together, rise to the challenge and defeat terrorism in all its forms. Nothing can justify the steamrolling or stabbing or shooting or bombing of innocent people in our cities, absolutely nothing." (J.Post)

IRAN SAYS IT’S ‘COMPLETELY READY’ TO RESTART NUCLEAR PROGRAM: Referring to the nuclear deal, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on 20 March 2017 that Iran "is fully prepared to return to the pre-JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) situation or even to conditions more robust than that if the USA reneges on its promises to the extent that the JCPOA's continuation harms our national interests." Zarif warned it could do so very quickly if the agreement falls through, and the restored nuclear program would be more advanced that the one mostly frozen by the 2015 deal. “During the past couple of months, with the efforts made by skilled Iranian scientists and experts, we have succeeded in making operational the most advanced centrifuges, that were just an idea at the time of approving the JCPOA,” Zarif said. (Times of Israel)

‘IRAN REMAINS CENTRAL THREAT TO ISRAEL’: Mossad Director-General Yossi Cohen referred on 21 March, 2017 to Israel's situation regarding Iran and said that as long as the present administration exists, with or without a nuclear agreement, Iran will continue to be the central threat to Israel. "The USA was and is a superpower, and the new buzzword is hybrid strategy. The idea is to work concurrently utilizing a variety of measures at different levels," Cohen asserted. At the conference at the Netanya Academic College, Cohen also referred to other regions around Israel and said that "the security establishment needs to focus on the enemies in our region and learn them in depth in order to overcome them when required - and it will be required. The Middle East is our home ground and therefore we need to be acquainted with the entire region. We need to create treaties, identify mutual interests with partners and even with enemies at a certain level," concluded Cohen. Earlier, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot addressed the conference and said that Israel’s military was working to secure the nation’s northern border, but warned that the Iranian-backed Hezbollah terror group in Lebanon had become Israel’s greatest security challenge. Hezbollah is the number one challenge facing the IDF,” said Eizenkot, adding that Israel was paying close attention to “the regular use of tactical chemical weapons in the fighting in Syria.” (Arutz-7) Pray for wisdom and strategy to be given to those who lead in Israel’s government, intelligence, and military agencies to know how to deal with Iran and Hezbollah’s increasing northern border threats and advanced weapon’s danger.

IRAN VOWS TO ‘LIBERATE’ GOLAN HEIGHTS: Many believe that it’s inevitable that the Syrian civil war will eventually spill over into northern Israel. Iran is doing everything in its power to prove them right. Iran’s Lebanese proxy, the Hezbollah terrorist group, is already heavily engaged in the war in Syria. But the group has suffered major losses, and is stretched thin trying to keep Syrian dictator Bashar Assad in power. So Iran has funneled money and resources to establish a new Hezbollah brigade focused on “liberating” the Golan Heights from Israeli control. A spokesman for the “Golan Liberation Brigade” told Iranian media: “This is a trained army with specific plans. If the government of Syria requests, we and our allies are ready to take action to liberate Golan. We will not permit Arab and Islamic countries in the region to remain in the grasps of the occupiers.” The new brigades promotional video featured soldiers carrying flags that read “Israel Will Be Destroyed.” (Israel Today)

ISRAEL PLANS MASS EVACUATIONS IF WAR ERUPTS AGAIN: Israel is drawing up contingency plans to evacuate up to a quarter-million civilians from border communities to protect them from attacks from Hamas, Hezbollah or other terror groups. The mass evacuations would be unprecedented in Israel’s history, part of a bigger plan where the army works with municipalities to keep civilians safe. Elements of the evacuation plan, code-named “Safe Distance,” were recently disclosed by a senior Israeli officer. There is currently an uptick in tensions between Israel, Syria and Hezbollah. Each side has warned that a new conflict would be worse than previous ones. Hezbollah fired more than 4,000 rockets on Israeli communities in the 2006 war, while Israel bombarded militant targets in southern Lebanon. The month of fighting killed an estimated 1,200 Lebanese, 44 Israeli civilians and 121 Israeli soldiers. In 2014, 50 days of fighting between Israel and Gaza’s Hamas rulers saw 73 Israelis killed, 66 of them soldiers. Thousands of rockets and mortar shells were fired by Hamas and other Islamic terror groups at Israeli towns and cities, where damage was limited by Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system. Hamas also utilized tunnels dug under the border to carry out attacks. “In 2017, all of Israel is under threat,” said Col. Itzik Bar of the military’s Homefront Command. Bar pointed out that Hezbollah has gained battle experience from fighting alongside Assad’s forces and that Hassan Nasrallah, the Shiite group’s chief, has recently increased his rhetoric about attacking Israel. The idea is to “remove the threat by not having civilians there,” Bar said. “We want a meeting of army and Hezbollah forces, and not civilians with Hezbollah forces.” (Times of Israel) Pray according to scripture: “Deliver me from evildoers and save me from those who are after my blood.” Ps 59:2

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JNN News Update March 22, 2017

ISRAEL AND CHINA EXPAND COOPERATION: Ministers and chief executive officers accompanying PM Binyamin Netanyahu on his trip to China signed agreements that include cooperation on emergency medicine, exchange of scientific delegations, the environment and cooperation in matters of education during the third innovation conference involving the two countries this year in Beijing. Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong told Netanyahu that the meeting with Israeli ministers proves itself and brings significant results, explaining, "At each meeting, significant agreements are signed that promise to enhance cooperation in innovation between the two countries. Other government ministries join each meeting, indicating the success of the forum. China has such a framework for innovation only with Israel. We must ensure that the framework of the innovation committee continues, will bear fruit and will expand in the coming years." PM Netanyahu noted that the framework of the conference is vital to bilateral relations, adding that the two countries have a long tradition and past, and both are committed to building a society that promotes technology and innovation. (Arutz-7)

ISRAEL FORBES PUBLISHES LIST OF BILLIONAIRES, INCLUDING 18 ISRAELIS: Forbes magazine published the list of billionaires for 2017, with 233 new billionaires joining the list. At present there are 2043 people with nine-figure fortunes. The list also includes 18 Israelis, with Eyal Ofer who lives in London the wealthiest Israeli in the world with a net worth of 8.9 billion dollars, having lost 2 billion dollars since last year. He is ranked in 145th place. (INN)

MAJOR GLOBAL AD AGENCY PULLS UK CLIENTS FROM GOOGLE WEBSITES, INCLUDING YOUTUBE OVER CONCERNS ABOUT EXTREMIST CONTENT: A top global advertising agency has withdrawn all of its 240 UK clients from Google websites - including YouTube - due to concerns about ads being displayed next to extremist content, media sources reported on 20 March, 2017. According to the report, Havas spends around £175 million a year in the UK on digital advertising, of which Google gets around £35 million. “We have a duty of care to our clients in the UK marketplace,” said Paul Frampton, chief executive of Havas UK. “Our position will remain until we are confident in the YouTube platform and Google Display Network’s ability to deliver the standards we and our clients expect.” Last week, a top Google executive told British lawmakers that an anti-Semitic YouTube video titled “Jews admit organizing White Genocide” did not constitute hate speech. While the video - narrated by ex-Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke - was “deeply offensive and shocking,” it did not violate YouTube rules against hate speech and would remain on the site, Google Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs Peter Barron said at a House of Commons Home Affairs Committee hearing. The hearing marked the start of a parliamentary inquiry into online hate. (Algemeiner) Pray that Google websites and social media outlets that refuse to cease posting material that is clearly anti-Semitic and full anti-Israel bias will incur increasing sharp penalties for their slander and incitement.

USA TO BOYCOTT DEBATES, CONDUCTED AS PART OF PERMANENT UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL AGENDA, ITEM THAT SINGLES OUT ISRAEL: The USA will boycott deliberations conducted within the framework of a permanent UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) agenda item that singles out Israel, the Trump administration announced on 20 March, 2017. The news came as the UNHRC was set to weigh a slew of anti-Israel resolutions this week at its Geneva, Switzerland headquarters. “While we are making some progress on reversing the anti-Israel bias at the UN in New York, regrettably, today in Geneva, the UN Human Rights Council begins debate on the only country permanently on the body’s calendar,” American UN envoy Nikki Haley said on Monday 20 March. “It is not Syria, where the regime has systematically slaughtered and tortured its own people. It is not Iran, where public hangings are a regular occurrence. It is not North Korea, where the regime uses forced labor camps to crush its people into submission. It is Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East. The so-called ‘Agenda Item 7’ discredits the standing of the only UN body specifically designed to address the state of global human rights by allowing nations to distract from their own abuses back home by churning out anti-Israel propaganda,”

Haley further noted. “As a result, the United States will not participate in discussions under Agenda Item 7 at the Human Rights Council in Geneva, other than to vote against the outrageous, one-sided, anti-Israel resolutions that so diminish what the Human Rights Council should be, and we encourage other council members who purport to be defenders of human rights to do the same.” State Department spokesman Mark Toner earlier on Monday said, “The United States strongly and unequivocally opposes the existence of the UN Human Rights Council’s Agenda Item Seven: ‘Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories.’ Today’s actions in the council are yet another reminder of that body’s long-standing bias against Israel. No other nation has an entire agenda item dedicated to it at the council. The continued existence of this agenda item is among the largest threats to the credibility of the council.” Deputy Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely tweeted at Haley on Monday, “I welcome USA determined position against UNHRC’s bias towards Israel. Today’s decision is an important step to change this bias.” (Algemeiner) Pray the UNHRC will be broken of its obsessive anti-Israel bias and pattern of targeting the Jewish state with its bigoted charges and resolutions. Pray that the focus will be turned to the true violators of human rights such as Syria, Iran and N. Korea. “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow." Isa 1:17

BDS FOUNDER ARRESTED FOR TAX EVASION: Omar Barghouti, founder of both the BDS movement and the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, was arrested on suspicion he committed tax evasion over the past decade, concealing $700,000 in earned income from tax authorities. During a raid of Barghouti’s house, police say they found credit cards and purchase records confirming the allegations against him. Investigators say Barghouti received the money from a company in the Palestinian Authority which sells and rents ATM machines, where Barghouti has served as director. Barghouti has openly advocated for the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state and the end of Zionism. Barghouti rejects the two-state solution, and has compared Israel to both Apartheid-ridden South Africa and Nazi Germany. The BDS movement pushes for boycotts of Israeli products and institutions, divestment from companies and institutions “complicit” in the violation of Palestinian rights (through investments in Israel), and sanctions against Israel, such as pushing for the rejection of its membership in international forums. (Times of Israel)

USA TO BAN USE OF LARGE ELECTRONICS ON SOME FLIGHTS FROM MIDDLE EAST: Passengers traveling on certain USA-bound foreign airline flights will have to check electronic devices larger than a cell phone once USA authorities formalize a new ban in response to an unspecified terrorism threat, USA officials told media sources on 20 March 2017. Department of Homeland Security officials said the ruling had been under consideration since the American government learned of a threat several weeks ago. The ban will affect 10 airports in eight countries in the Middle East and North Africa, including airlines based in Jordan and Saudi Arabia. The source did not name the other countries. No American carriers were included in the ban. Passengers would be allowed to carry in their checked luggage larger devices like tablets, portable DVD players, laptops and cameras. The ban on electronics on certain airlines is related to al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula and information that came from a recent USA special forces raid in Yemen. Reportedly the group has planned several foiled bombing attempts on Western-bound airlines. Royal Jordanian Airlines said on 20 March, 2017 that USA-bound passengers would be barred from carrying most electronic devices aboard aircraft starting this week at the request of USA officials, including those that transit through Canada. Royal Jordanian Airlines confirmed in a tweet that USA transportation authorities had barred carrying larger electronic devices in cabin luggage. (J.Post)

TORONTO HATE CRIMES INCREASE, WITH JEWS TARGETED THE MOST: Reports of hate crimes in Toronto increased by 8 percent, with the city’s Jewish community targeted the most, according to a police report compiling last year’s data. Hate crimes in the city increased to 145 in 2016 from 134 the previous year, the Toronto Police reported. Forty-three of the reported attacks were against Jews. Crimes motivated by religion accounted for 46% of the incidents, the highest number in the past 10 years. Police said suspects in hate crimes are predominantly male and aged 18 to 40. The three most reported criminal offenses motivated by hate were mischief to property, assault and criminal harassment. The Jewish community saw the most cases of vandalism. Only 11 arrests were made in 2016, down from 19 the previous year. Some 200,000 Jews live in the Toronto area, making it Canada’s largest Jewish community. Last month, Toronto police said they would step up patrols in Jewish areas after a series of anti-Semitic messages targeted members of the city’s Jewish community. Jewish community centers in Toronto have also been targeted as part of the wave of bomb threats to menace Jewish institutions across the USA. (Times Of Israel)

JERUSALEM POLL: 75 % OF RESIDENTS LOVE LIVING HERE: A recent poll carried out by the Youth Authority in the Jerusalem Municipality finds that three out of four of those surveyed are either "highly satisfied" or "very highly satisfied" with living in the capital. 74% said they would recommend that their friends outside the city move to Jerusalem. The survey polled 9,000 Jerusalemites aged 21-40. Chanan Rubin, a member of the Jerusalem city council who holds the city's portfolio for "Youth, Families and Students," said, "Our first-of-its-kind program to involve the public in formulating policy regarding young families has proved itself! In its wake we have developed and invested greatly in parks, public spaces, unique educational frameworks, family-oriented events, and the like." The poll also found that 75% of college students feel that it is likely they will be able to find work in Jerusalem in their field. In certain fields, such as bio-tech, engineering, computer sciences, education, social sciences, and medicine, more than 80% are confident they will find work in Jerusalem. City officials are happy with the results, not to mention surprised. Mayor Nir Barkat said, "In the past, our problem was that younger people were leaving the city in droves, but today, we see that they represent our future. Our efforts have made Jerusalem attractive once again to the young, as well as a leader in high-tech, culture, and all areas of life." The survey results contrast with the popular conception that young Jerusalemites continue to leave the city.” (Arutz-7)“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May they prosper who love you. Peace be within your walls, prosperity within your palaces.‘” Ps 122:6

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JNN News Update March 20, 2017

RECORD NUMBER OF RUNNERS AT JERUSALEM MARATHON: A record number of over 30,000 people took part in the seventh Jerusalem Marathon on Friday 17 March 2017 with Kenya’s Shadrack Kipkogey winning the full race at 2:17.36 hours. Emily Chepkemoi of Kenya was the first woman to cross the finish line, clocking a time of 2:49.25 hours. Almost 3,000 police officers, working in coordination with the Jerusalem Municipality and private security personnel, were out in increased numbers. Around 3,500 of the participants were international competitors, coming in from more than 65 countries. “The fact that we broke a record for number of overseas participants in the year in which Jerusalem is celebrating 50 years since it was reunited is proof of Jerusalem’s might and of the international prestige of the marathon,” said Mayor Nir Barkat. The route began in the western part of the city, between the Knesset and Israel Museum, looping around the Givat Ram campus of Hebrew University and through several neighborhoods on the way up to Hebrew University’s Mount Scopus campus. The route then descended to the Old City, taking runners through Jaffa Gate and the Armenian Quarter and out through Zion Gate, before ending in Sacher Park. (J. Post)

PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY PROTESTS UNRWA CURRICULUM CHANGES: UNRWA's Judea and Samaria Manager Taeh al-Bas announced the UNRWA Education Committee's intention to change the textbooks of schools belonging to the organization. In a media interview on 18 March 2017, al-Bas said the changes are all connected to "national issues related to Palestinian cities conquered by Israel in 1948, geography maps, history, and national culture." He also warned the changes were "very dangerous." According to al-Bas, the changes are meant to prove UNRWA is a neutral organization which teaches subjects objectively. He blamed UNRWA for allowing the USA to dictate what happens in Israel and other countries. Al-Bas called on the Palestinian Authority to involve itself in the matter, and said he had sent a letter to UNRWA demanding they immediately cease efforts to change the curriculum. The Center for Near East Policy Research, led by David Badin, has closely followed UNRWA's activities for two decades, and exposed the fact that the Palestinian Authority teaches children not to recognize Israel's existence and brainwashes them to want to return to "Palestine" and destroy Israel. School children in UNRWA schools in Gaza are trained to infiltrate and attack Israeli towns. Recently, an UNRWA employee was elected to the terror group Hamas’ political bureau. The USA government is currently investigating UNRWA's connections to terror. (Arutz-7) Pray that the Palestinian Authority will incur harsh penalties for promoting terrorism, educating its youth to hate Israel, and glorifying terrorist murderers as heroes. PA political heads have been warned repeatedly that USA and British foreign aid will be cut if such activities persist. So far it seems no one in the PA is listening.

ARABS AGREE TO ESCALATE TERROR WAR ‘IN ALL WAYS POSSIBLE’: The Supreme Coordination Committee in Ramallah called on the various terrorist organizations to unite in "national unity" against Israel. The Supreme Coordination Committee consists of representatives of various terrorist organizations. Following a meeting involving the leaders of numerous terror groups, the Committee published a notice expressing support for a "national plan" which would include escalation of the terror war against Israel and encouraged "all forms" of terror in order to "support the rights of the Palestinian nation and its goals of independence and freedom." (Arutz-7) “He who is pregnant with evil and conceives trouble gives birth to disillusionment. He who digs a hole and scoops it out falls into the pit he has made.” Ps 7:14-15

HAMAS LEADER: WE WANT PALESTINE IN ITS ENTIRETY: Senior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar recently declared that "removing the Jews from the land they occupied in 1948 is an immutable principle" in the Koran. Speaking to Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV earlier this month, Al-Zahar claimed that Allah says in the Koran: ‘And drive them out from wherever they have driven you out.’” He added that the Jews “drove out” the Arabs “from within the 1948 borders. Hence, removing the Jews from the land they occupied in 1948 is an immutable principle, because it appears in the Book of Allah. He further urged members of the Hamas and the Islamic Jihad never to mention the term “1967 borders” and said, “We have liberated Gaza, part of Palestine, but I am not prepared to accept just Gaza. Our position is: Palestine in its entirety, and not a grain of soil less. We will fight them wherever we can – on the ground, underground, and if we have airplanes, we will fight them from the skies,” vowed Al-Zahar. The comments are exposed following a recent report suggesting that Hamas, as part of its desire to achieve international recognition, would accept the pre-1967 borders. Al-Zahar’s remarks say otherwise. (INN) As PM Netanyahu rightly told the Israeli Presidential Conference in 2013, “The Arabs want it all….” Not one iota of Islamist hatred for Israel - or terrorist agendas to destroy the Jewish state - has budged over the decades.

TRAUMA AMONG CHILDREN IN SOUTHERN ISRAEL RISING DUE TO SOUNDS OF BATTLES BETWEEN EGYPTIAN MILITARY AND ISIS IN THE SINAI: The children of southern Israel - who have long had to deal with the fear of rocket and mortar attacks from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip as well as underground terror tunnels - are now dealing with a new source of anxiety. While Gaza has been relatively quiet since Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, an increasing amount of area youngsters have recently been showing signs of anxiety brought on by the sounds of fighting they hear from across the border in the Sinai Peninsula - where Egyptian military forces are battling against ISIS-affiliated terrorists. According to data gathered by the Eshkol Regional Council, there has been a 50% increase in the number of Israeli children suffering from trauma due to the explosions echoing from nearby Sinai. The anxiety felt by these children is manifested by - among other things - sleep issues and fear of being alone. Gadi Yarkoni - the current head of the Eshkol Regional Council who was severely wounded in a mortar attack on the last day of the 2014 Gaza war - told media sources that the matter was being handled by local health and education professionals. (Algemeiner) Pray that the children of Israel’s southern communities will be sheltered from anxiety and fear - and that the area will be kept safe from all manner of mortar and rocket attacks.

UN CHIEF ORDERS REPORT ACCUSING ISRAEL OF ‘APARTHEID’ PULLED FROM THE WEB: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on 17 March 2017 requested the removal of a report accusing Israel of apartheid from the website of the UN body that published it. Guterres had previously distanced himself from the report by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), which is comprised of 18 Arab countries. The United States on Wed. 15 March 2017 had demanded that the report be withdrawn altogether. “The United States is outraged by the report,” said USA Ambassador Nikki Haley. “The United Nations secretariat was right to distance itself from this report, but it must go further and withdraw the report altogether. That such anti-Israel propaganda would come from a body whose membership nearly universally does not recognize Israel is unsurprising,” said Haley.(Times of Israel)

PLO BLASTS UN FOR REMOVING ‘APARTHEID’ REPORT: Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi on 18 March, 2017, blasted the UN for removing the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) report that accused Israel of imposing an apartheid regime on Palestinian Arabs. She lauded the apartheid report as “ highlighting the true reality on the ground which is one of apartheid, ethnic cleansing, and military occupation.” Ashrawi called on UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who ordered the report removed from the agency’s website, “to reinstate the ESCWA report and undertake concrete measures to hold Israel accountable for its violations of international law and human rights.” The report was co-authored by former UN Human Rights Council Special Rapporteur, Richard Falk, who during his tenure repeatedly attacked Israel. (Arutz-7)

ARGENTINEANS DEMAND JUSTICE FOR ATTACK ON ISRAELI EMBASSY: Hundreds of people gathered in the Argentinean capital on 16 March 2017, at the memorial park where the Israeli Embassy used to stand to remember the victims of the terrorist attack that destroyed it more than two decades ago. On 17 March 1992, a car bomb exploded, killing 29 civilians and wounding 242 others. The perpetrators were never captured and Argentineans continue to demand justice. Iran is believed to have been behind the attack. Gabriel Pichon, one of the survivors, opened the event by saying: “In this place there used to be a beautiful house, the Israeli Embassy, which is now a memorial park. We, the survivors, stand here to remember all the victims, because forgetting would mean they die twice.” Pichon said that although many years have passed, the Jewish community will keep demanding concrete measures, from whatever government is in office in Argentina, to bring the criminals involved to justice. (J. Post)

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JNN News Update March 17, 2017

SRAEL’S MK LAPID: UN HAS BECOME A TERRORIST COLLABORATOR: Yesh Atid chairman MK Yair Lapid on Wed. evening 15 March 2017 blasted a UN report accusing Israel of imposing apartheid on Arabs in Judea and Samaria. The entire report "is full of hatred and anti-Semitism", Lapid said. “Instead of an organization which defends freedom, democracy and liberal values, the UN has turned into a collaborator with terrorist organizations. Does anyone think it makes sense that a UN agency in which Syria and Sudan are members will preach morality to the State of Israel - the only democracy in the Middle East that protects the rights of its minorities and provides humanitarian aid to its enemies?” he continued. “Europe and the United States must make it unequivocally clear that as long as the campaign of incitement by the UN against Israel continues, they will stop supporting this organization that has long ago ceased to fulfill its role." Lapid added, "This week I held a series of meetings in Washington aimed at stopping the funding to the UN and convincing the United States to withdraw from the UN Human Rights Council. I will continue to do so until that happens." (Arutz-7) USA URGES UN TO SCRAP REPORT CALLING ISRAEL ‘APARTHEID’: The United States on Wed. 15 March 2017 demanded that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres withdraw a report by a UN body accusing Israel of imposing apartheid on Arabs in Judea and Samaria. Guterres distanced himself from the report by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) but USA Ambassador Nikki Haley said it should be scrapped altogether. "The United States is outraged by the report," said Haley. "The United Nations secretariat was right to distance itself from this report, but it must go further and withdraw the report altogether." The study concluded that "available evidence established beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid." Based in Beirut, ESCWA is comprised of 18 Arab countries, which lists the 'state of Palestine' as a full member. UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said "the report does not reflect the views of the secretary-general."

One of the authors is Richard Falk, a former special UN rapporteur on Palestinian human rights who has praised the Hamas terrorist organization and compared it to the French resistance during World War 2. "That such anti-Israel propaganda would come from a body whose membership nearly universally does not recognize Israel is unsurprising," said Haley. She described Falk as "a man who has repeatedly made biased and deeply offensive comments about Israel and espoused ridiculous conspiracy theories". Haley has accused the UN of being biased against Israel and has vowed as President Donald Trump's envoy to staunchly defend Israel at the world body. Israel's ambassador Danny Danon condemned the report, describing it as an "attempt to smear and falsely label the only true democracy in the Middle East." Danon said to label Israel as an apartheid regime was "despicable" and "a blatant lie." (Fox) “Surely the idolatrous commotion on the hills and mountains is a deception; surely in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel” Jer 3:23.

GOP SENATORS ASK TILLERSON TO PROBE USA FUNDING OF SOROS GROUPS ABROAD: Republican senators are asking Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to investigate claims that USA taxpayer money is being used to back left-wing billionaire George Soros' political meddling and similar efforts overseas. A letter sent 14 March 2017 asked for a probe into how USA funds are being used by agencies such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to back left-wing political groups in other countries. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, even said foreign officials and political leaders have come to him with "reports of USA activity in their respective countries." He explained, "This includes reports of diplomats playing political favorites, USAID funds supporting extreme and sometimes violent political activists, and the USA Government working to marginalize the moderates and conservatives in leadership roles. This sort of political favoritism from our missions around the world is unacceptable.” The letter to Tillerson followed a letter in Feb. 2017 from GOP lawmakers asking about whether USA tax dollars have been used in recent years to fund Soros-backed projects in the small, conservative-led country of Macedonia. (Fox)

MACEDONIA’S ETHNIC TENSIONS NEAR THE BOILING POINT (AND SOROS IS STIRRING THE POT): George Soros, the left-wing billionaire who wants to rule the world, is meddling with events that could plunge Macedonia into chaos or civil war, and escalate USA tensions with Russia. Locked between Greece, Kosovo and Albania – and friendly with none of them -- Macedonia is an ethnic patchwork of languages, religions and loyalties. Last year, elections left the nationalist ruling party weakened politically. A group of opposition parties that represent the country’s largely-Muslim Albanian minority put together a fragile coalition that could have let them form a new government. President Gjorge Ivanov, a member of the nationalist party, refused to accept the opposition coalition, claiming they were puppets of the Albanian government next door. Protesters from both sides spilled into the streets of the capital, Skopje, setting the stage for potential conflict.

Behind the scenes, Soros, a Hungarian-American hedge fund magnate, has reportedly been spending part of his considerable fortune to create groups in Macedonia that would further his socialist agenda. Among them: the Platform for Citizens Oriented Politics, Journalists for Human Rights, and an LGBT Support Center. Soros, whose track record leaves no doubt he favors the left of center challengers, is not shy about spending for causes he supports. He is said to have spent hundreds of millions of dollars for last week’s “Day Without Women” protests in the United States. He is also a prime force behind moveon.org. As many as 61 left-wing groups in Macedonia, affiliated with Soros’s Open Society Institute, received millions of dollars from the USA Agency for International Development and the State Department during Barack Obama’s administration. Several Republican congressmen recently wrote to the State Department to complain about this use of taxpayer dollars. The USA and the European Union have called on Ivanov to reverse his position and let the coalition of his opponents take power. Russia, on the other hand, backs Ivanov and says the West is trying to impose its will on Macedonia. Macedonia may not be at the top of President Trump’s concerns – yet. But it is an outlier of the potential conflicts in which the USA and Russia will find themselves on opposing sides. (Fox)

REVOLUTIONARY GUARD COMMANDER: HEZBOLLAH MORE PREPARED THAN EVER TO ATTACK ISRAEL: An assistant to a commander in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps revealed to Kuwaiti news sources that the Lebanon-based terrorist group, Hezbollah, has raised its level of preparedness and is ready to launch a massive attack against Israel with lethal results. The Iranian commander explained that Iran has opened factories in Lebanon for the purpose of manufacturing long-range missiles as well as other munitions and has recently passed ownership of the factories to Hezbollah. The Iranian official, who opted to remain anonymous, said that the decision to set up the factories in Lebanon was made due to "Israel's [alleged destruction] of munitions factories in Sudan, as well as the damage caused to munitions sources from Syria." The official quoted Iranian Defense Minister Hoseein Dehghan who has recently warned that Hezbollah was now capable of manufacturing rockets that could target every spot in Israel, from the very north to the southern border with Egypt. The official also said that a special faculty was opened at Imam Hossein University, which is owned by the Revolutionary Guard, where hundreds of Lebanese as well as foreign students are trained to manufacture rockets. The Iranian source explained that the facilities were built some 50 meters deep and protected by several defense systems to fend off Israel's fighter jets in case of attack. (J.Post) Intercede for the safety of Israel’s northern territory from terrorist groups located there and from hostile nations such as Iran, Lebanon and Syria that continue to build up military strength for future hostile encounters with Israel.

INTEL MINISTER: HEZBOLLAH’S GOLAN LIBERATION BRIGADE’ INCREASES IRAN RISK: The formation of a new Hezbollah brigade which aims to liberate the Golan Heights from Israel increases the threat posed by Iran on the northern border, Minister of Intelligence and member of Security Cabinet Israel Katz said this week. “The so called ‘Golan Liberation Brigade’ sharpens the threat posed by the presence of Iran and Hezbollah in Syria in general and on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights in particular. I have been saying for a long time that if Iran is allowed to base itself in Syria it will be a threat to Israel's national security and a constant source of regional instability and tension and friction with the Sunni majority in Syria and with the Sunni countries in the region as well,” Katz added. The latest Iranian proxy to be formed in Syria is a brigade that was announced last week at a press conference in Iran. “After the latest victories [in Syria and Iraq], we established the ‘Golan Liberation Brigade’, said an Iranian military source. According to the source, the brigade members are well trained special forces and well-armed, ready to assist the Syrian regime in retaking the Golan Heights, territory won by Israel in the 1967 Six Day War. The group also released a 45-second video promoting the newly formed Golan liberation brigade, with dozens of fighters marching with a banner reading “Israel will be destroyed.” (J.Post) “Moreover the multitude of your foes shall be like fine dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones like chaff that passes away. Yes, it shall be in an instant, suddenly.” Isa. 29: 5

SYRIAN CIVIL WAR DEATH TOLL: A Britain-based war monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed this week that so far about 465,000 people have been killed or are missing in Syria's bloody six-year civil war. The Observatory said it had documented the deaths of more than 321,000 people since the start of the war six years ago, and more than 145,000 others had been reported as missing. The Observatory estimated that the dead includes more than 96,000 civilians. However these figures did not include many other civilians missing, people whose fate is still unknown. The Norwegian Refugee Council’s Middle East director, Carsten Hansen, said, "Over the last year in Syria all parties involved have blocked vital aid supplies and millions have become poorer, hungrier and more isolated from assistance and from the world. We join the rest of the international humanitarian community on this milestone of shame to voice outrage at the plight of millions of civilians living in a downward spiral of despair." (Arutz-7/J.Post) Please intercede for Syria’s war-torn civilian population, together with its countless besieged children. “Deliver the poor and needy; free them from the hand of the wicked” Ps 82:4

ISRAEL TREATS MORE THAN 2,600 WOUNDED SYRIANS: Israel's medical services have treated more than 2,600 Syrians wounded during their country's conflict since 2013, despite the two nations being officially at war, the Israeli army said Tues. 14 March 2027. The wounded are transferred to the border where they receive first aid from Israeli medical teams before being taken to hospitals. Israel and Syria have been officially at war for decades, though the border between the two countries was largely quiet until the Syrian conflict broke out in 2011. The Jewish state has allegedly carried out a number of strikes inside Syria, targeting Lebanese terrorist organization Hezbollah, an Israeli arch-foe and ally of the Syrian regime. (INN)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff

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JNN News Update March 15, 2017

4 ARRESTED FOLLOWING JERUSALEM TERROR ATTACK: Police raided the eastern Jerusalem home of the Arab terrorist responsible for a stabbing attack which left two Border Police officers injured early Monday morning 13 March 2017. The attack took place at a security post just outside of the Lion’s Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem. The terrorist entered a booth occupied by the two officers and proceeded to stab them before being shot and killed. One officer suffered serious injuries, while the other has been listed in light-to-moderate condition. Both were evacuated to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital and are in stable condition. After the attack, police and Border Police officers raided the terrorist’s home in the Jabel Mukaber neighborhood, searching the premises and taking four of the terrorist’s relatives into custody. Police say the four are being questioned in connection with the attack. Jabel Mukaber has been dubbed a terrorist hotbed by security experts, who warn of increasing support there for the ISIS terror movement. "The neighborhood school brings parents of terrorists to laud the greatness of their children's activities,” said Dr. Ephraim Herrera, an expert on Islam and the Middle East. “Our inquiries to the Education Ministry were answered saying it is a private school, so don't be surprised that this is happening." (Arutz-7) Pray for the swift and complete recovery of Israel’s latest terror victims – also for the protection of Jerusalem and surrounding areas from brutal outbreaks of terrorist violence.

24 PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY SCHOOLS FUNDED BY UK, EU IGNORE AID CONDITIONS, CONTINUE TO INDOCTRINATE STUDENTS TO COMMIT VIOLENCE AGAINST ISRAELIS: A British daily revealed on 12 March 2017 that 24 Palestinian Authority schools are openly ignoring Western demands to cease encouraging violence against Israelis - or else forfeit foreign aid. According to the Daily Mail, despite public outrage over the UK government’s payments to the PA as part of a commitment to spend £12 billion on foreign aid - following an expose by the paper last year about how taxpayers’ money was going toward paying salaries to convicted terrorists and families of suicide bombers - the schools in question have been continuing to incite students to terrorism through text books and classroom indoctrination. MP Joan Ryan, chair of Labour Friends of Israel - for which a report was prepared by Jerusalem-based research organization Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) - said that though she supports sending aid to the Palestinians, “We cannot stand idly by while the Palestinian Authority sanctions anti-Semitic incitement which poisons young minds and makes a two-state solution ever more difficult to achieve.”

Among the 24 schools in question, all dedicated to prominent Palestinian terrorists, are four named after the mastermind of the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics, one after the founder of Hamas and one after Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem who backed Hitler during WWII and helped recruit for the SS. Another of the schools on the list, in Hebron, is one of three named after Dalal Mughrabi, the woman behind the deadliest terrorist attack in Israel’s history - the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre, which left 37 people dead, among them 12 children. “Britain and the European Union bear responsibility for this terror when they are funding a school system that is actively promoting, and thereby creating, terrorism,” PMW head Itamar Marcus told the Daily Mail. “This is simply child abuse, encouraging kids to die in armed struggle. It is a terrible message for the next generation. Children are the key to peace, but look at what they are being exposed to from a young age, growing up in an environment of terror and told the killing of Israelis is a heroic action.” (Algemeiner) How grave is the tragic truth that Palestinians are destroying the souls of their own society and especially their children. They do so by glorifying terrorists as heroes, furthering incitement to hate and kill Jews via children’s TV programs, school text books and in summer camps designed to instill jihad aspirations in the young. Pray against the sacrifice of Palestinian children to jihadist hatred and murder.

JORDANIAN WHO KILLED ISRAELI GIRLS SAYS ISRAELI ‘HUMAN WASTE’ MUST BE ERADICATED: Hours after his release from 20 years in jail for gunning down seven Israeli schoolgirls, ex-Jordanian soldier Ahmed Daqamseh declared on 12 March 2017 that Israelis are “human waste” that must be eradicated. Daqamseh made his remarks to al-Jazeera TV station, shortly after returning from jail to his home village of Ibdir to cheering friends and family. “The Israelis are the human waste of people that the rest of the world has vomited up at our feet” he told the TV station. “We must eliminate them by fire or by burial. If this is not done by our hands, the task will fall on the future generations to do.” In a later media interview Daqamseh said that he did not want to cause political instability in Jordan, and indicated he was not planning to carry out future attacks. “My position regarding Zionists is known. I did what I did 20 years ago and that’s it,” he said. In March 1997, Daqamseh opened fire with an automatic weapon at Israeli schoolgirls on a trip to the Jordan-Israel border, killing seven of them and wounding five others and a teacher. A Jordanian court deemed Daqamseh mentally unstable and sentenced him to life in prison, rather than imposing the death penalty. Early this week Daqamseh was released from the Bab al-Hawa prison in Irbid, 60 miles north of the capital Amman after serving 20 years. Daqamseh was driven home in a convoy of dozens of cars whose drivers were honking their horns. His brother Bassem said the family home was full of well-wishers. (Times of Israel)

TRUMP CALLS MAHMOUD ABBAS, SAYS IT’S TIME TO MAKE PEACE: USA President Donald Trump on 10 March 2017 phoned Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and said the time had come to seek a genuine peace agreement with Israel. The President noted that the United States cannot impose a solution on the Israelis and Palestinians, nor can one side impose an agreement on the other,” read a statement released by the White House. Trump reportedly invited Abbas to visit Washington “in the near future.” Last month, Trump served notice to the Palestinians that he was not married to the two-state solution, and suggested he’d be willing to back any solution that Israel found most fitting. “I’m looking at two-state and one-state solutions, and I like the one that both parties like. I can live with either one,” he said during a press conference with visiting Israel PM Netanyahu. (Israel Today)

‘THERE’S NO ONE FOR ISRAEL TO NEGOTIATE WITH’: Israel is interested in pursuing bilateral negotiations for the resolution of the Israeli-Arab conflict, National Infrastructure Minister Yuval Steinitz said Monday 13 March 2017, but has no partner in the Palestinian Authority willing and able to make peace. Steinitz made the comments on Israel Radio just ahead of the arrival of special White House envoy Jason Greenblatt, who was slated to land in Israel Monday for talks with PM Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas. Minister Steinitz slammed the PA leader, arguing his extremist positions made negotiations between the PA and Israel impossible. “Israel is just telling the truth about Mahmoud Abbas’ extreme positions, which negate the existence of Israel as a Jewish state.” (INN) Former Deputy Education Minister Avi Wortzman has likewise in the past sharply criticized the Palestinian Authority for making endless demands to continue peace talks. ''They demanded independence, and we gave it to them. They demanded recognition of a Palestinian state, and we gave it to them. They demanded weapons and we gave them to them. They demanded Hebron, and we gave it to them. They demanded Gaza, and we gave it to them. They demanded terrorist releases, and we gave it to them, again and again," said Wortzman. "In response: we received attacks, we received wounded and dead, we received damage to our economy," he continued. "Now they're coming back and demanding we withdraw to '67 borders, with eastern Jerusalem as their capital. If we do it, God forbid, what will they ask for tomorrow? It's time to demand that we stop giving," he stated. "It's time to put our existential needs and our security before their demands. The time has come to say it clearly: this is our country. Ours - period."

LIBERMAN SUGGESTS NEW PEACE PUSH AFOOT, CALLS FOR POPULATION SWAPS: Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Monday 13 March 2017 that any future peace agreement with the Palestinians should not see some current Israeli Arab MKs as citizens of Israel. Liberman suggested that a new push for peace was on the horizon and warned against repeating what he said were the mistakes of the past. "On the threshold of a new attempt to start up diplomatic negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, we must learn the lessons of the past, and the first lesson is: every attempt to solve the Palestinian issue on a land-for-peace basis is destined to fail." Liberman said that "the only way to a sustainable agreement is through land and population swaps as part of a larger regional peace deal." The defense minister suggested that Israel's Arab population should be part of a Palestinian state if a two-state solution were to be agreed upon. "It cannot be that a hegemonic Palestinian state will be established, without a single Jew - 100% Palestinian, and Israel will be a bi-national state with 22% Palestinians," he stated. "There is no reason that Sheikh Raed Salah, Ayman Odeh, Bassel Ghattas or Haneen Zoabi will continue to be citizens of Israel," he added, referencing the leader of the Islamic Movement's Northern Branch as well as three Joint List MKs. (J.Post)

JEWISH CENTERS IN USA, CANADA HIT WITH FRESH SPATE OF BOMB THREATS: Several Jewish centers in the USA and Canada received bomb threats Sunday 12 March 2017, as a wave of menacing calls and emails showed little sign of subsiding. Threats were reported at JCCs serving Rochester, New York, Chicago, Illinois, Indianapolis, Indiana, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Vancouver, British Columbia, and Houston, Texas. All the threats were found to be non-credible and the centers were able to resume operations a short time later. The calls and emails came as Jewish communities around the globe celebrated the holiday of Purim. According to the Anti-Defamation League, there have been 152 threats this year against Jewish institutions in 37 states and two Canadian provinces. Many of the institutions have been threatened more than once. In New York, where the Rochester JCC was evacuated for the second time in a week, Governor Andrew Cuomo called the threat “a despicable and cowardly act” of anti-Semitism on the Jewish holiday of Purim. He directed the New York State Police to work with federal and local law enforcement on an investigation. (Times of Israel)

INTEL TO BUY ISRAEL’S MOBILEYE FOR $15 BILLION: Technology giant Intel is purchasing Israeli company Mobileye for $14-15 billion, in the biggest deal in the history of Israel's high-tech industry. Mobileye, based in Jerusalem, develops driver assistance systems and is developing the technology for automated cars. In 2016, Mobileye teamed up with BMW and Intel to develop new technology that could put self-driving cars on the road by 2021. (Ha'aretz)

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The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

JNN News Update March 13, 2017

NAHARAYIM MASSACRE KILLER RELEASED FROM JORDANIAN PRISON: Ahmad Daqamseh, who murdered seven Israeli girls in a massacre at the Island of Peace site in Naharayim in 1997, was released from Jordanian prison early Sunday 12 March 2017 after having served a 20-year sentence. On 13 March 1997, Daqamseh - who at the time was a 26-year-old soldier in the Jordanian army -opened fire at a group of 7th and 8th grade schoolgirls from the AMIT Fuerst School in Beit Shemesh, who were on a class field trip. Seven girls were murdered in the attack and six others were wounded. A military court deemed him mentally unstable and sentenced him to life in prison, which in Jordan typically means 25 years. Recently, Jordanian government Spokesman Mohammad Al Momani confirmed that Daqamseh was to be released when he had finished serving his sentence. Monday 13 March 2017 marks 20 years since the mass murder.

One of the Jordanian news sites posted photos from Daqamseh's release, showing celebrations in his hometown, the city of Irbid in northern Jordan. "My father was released and he is now with us," Daqamseh's son, Sif, told the Jordanian site. His wife declared that "my happiness is unlike any other happiness" at her husband's release. (Ynet) Pray that this brutal murderer will not return to his former vocation as so often happens when terrorists are released from prison. They instantly become celebrated heroes and frequently return to planning and carrying out acts of violence against innocent civilians of all ages.

THE AMALEK OF TODAY: Yaffa Shoukroun, an Israeli seriously injured in the Jordanian terrorist Ahmed Daqamseh's murderous attack, referred in an Israeli media interview to the terrorist's release. "I heard this morning about the release and I feel that they ruined our Purim celebrations," she said. "The Jordanian government did not coordinate with us the decision to release him," said an indignant Shoukroun. "In the past there were attempts to free him but we made a fight so that the terrorist would never again see the light of day. I never imagined that one day this terrorist would be set free. He should have served a sentence for every pupil he murdered, he didn't even serve a sentence for one and was released after 20 years." Shoukroun was seriously injured in the attack, suffered four bullet wounds and underwent extensive rehabilitation. Three of the seven pupils murdered in the attack studied in her class. "This week we commemorated twenty years since the murder of the seven girls. For me and for the families and all those who were present there it is all still fresh as if it happened yesterday. Every morning when I come to school I see the pictures of those murdered and they accompany me every day and every hour. We do numerous things in memory of the girls and recently we established scholarships in their name. Today on Purim we remember Amalek of then and the Amalek of now. I appeal from here and hope that the Israeli government will demand that he be returned to jail for the rest of his life." (Arutz-7) Amalek was the first to make war against Israel, attacking the rear guard of the Israelites on their deliverance from Egypt. Jewish tradition holds the Amalekites are the undying foe of the Jews. “Moses built an altar and called it The Lord is my Banner. He said, ‘Because hands were lifted up against the throne of the Lord, the Lord will be at war against the Amalekites from generation to generation’” Ex. 17:15-16

ISRAEL FEARS ISIS CHEMICAL ATTACK IN EUROPE: The National Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Bureau is concerned that ISIS terrorists might be plotting to carry out chemical attacks in Europe in the coming months. The bureau intends to issue a travel advisory to the tens of thousands of Israelis who are planning to vacation in Europe over the upcoming Passover holiday. The bureau is said to be particularly concerned with the possibility that, due to losses ISIS is sustaining in Iraq and Syria, foreign fighters there will return to their homes in Europe and carry out attacks along the lines of the truck attack in Berlin in Dec. 2017 that killed 12 people, including Dalia Elyakim, an Israeli tourist, and wounded 56 others. The bureau was specifically concerned with the possibility that ISIS would try to carry out a mass casualty chemical attack in a main European city. The bomb could be made using over-the-counter ingredients available in supermarkets and home improvement supply stores. Last week, the USA State Department issued a worldwide warning, urging American travelers to be vigilant while traveling overseas. “Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack to more effectively target crowds, including the use of edged weapons, pistols, and vehicles as weapons,” the State Department said in its statement. (J.Post)

TRUMP ADMINISTRATION TO HOST 68-NATION MEETING ON WAY TO ‘ACCELERATE’ DESTRUCTION OF ISIS: The Trump administration will gather 68 foreign ministers from around the globe this month to figure out a more efficient strategy for decimating the ISIS terrorist group. The State Department confirmed late last week that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and USA allies will meet March 22-23, 2017 to “accelerate international efforts to defeat ISIS in the remaining areas it holds in Iraq and Syria and maximize pressure on its branches, affiliates and networks.” Coalition forces will also discuss ways to handle the ongoing humanitarian crisis playing out in Syria and Iraq as a result of the terror group’s presence in the region. The meeting will take place less than one month after President Trump told a joint session of Congress that he would take “strong measures to protect our nation from radical Islamic terrorism. As promised, I directed the Department of Defense to develop a plan to demolish and destroy ISIS -a network of lawless savages that have slaughtered Muslims and Christians, and men, women, and children of all faiths and beliefs,” Mr. Trump said. “We will work with our allies, including our friends and allies in the Muslim world, to extinguish this vile enemy from our planet.” (Washington Post) Continue to pray ISIS will be utterly defeated and dismantled. “My prayer will still be against the deeds of evildoers.” Ps 141:5

ISRAEL CONCERNED BY PENDING DEAL BETWEEN IRAN AND ASSAD REGIME THAT WOULD SEE IRAN BUILD MILITARY BASE AT MEDITERRANEAN PORT OF LATAKIA: Iran is on the verge of reaching a deal with the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad to build a military base at the port of Latakia on the Mediterranean coast, an Israeli diplomatic official told media sources on 10 March, 2017. According to the report, this would be Assad’s way of paying Iran back for the extensive military and financial support it has provided to the Assad regime since the outbreak of the ongoing war in Syria six years ago. The Jewish state, the report said, views the establishment of an Iranian military presence on the Mediterranean Sea as an “extreme step” that would “foster instability in the region and promote terrorism against Israel.” Among other things, it would bolster the Iran-backed Hezbollah terrorist group and increase the threat to the Israeli home front. Latakia is located less than 200 miles up the coast from Israel’s northern port of Haifa.

After his meeting with Russian President Putin in Moscow last week, Israeli PM Netanyahu said in a statement, “I made it clear that regarding Syria, while Israel is not opposed that there should be an agreement there, we strongly oppose the possibility that Iran and its proxies will be left with a military presence in Syria under such an agreement. Days ago, Sarah Fainberg - a research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) in Tel Aviv with expertise on Russia – said that Israel was seeking to become an integral part in the talks about the future redesign of Syria. “Israel needs to enter that conversation because the threat to Israel is not only a few missiles crossing the border into the Golan Heights, but the establishment of a permanent ‘Hezbollah-stan’ on its northeastern border,” she said. (Algemeiner)

MEMBER OF ROYAL FAMILY TO MAKE FIRST OFFICIAL STATE VISIT TO ISRAEL: A member of the United Kingdom’s royal family is reportedly expected to visit Israel this year, in what would be an historic first for the Jewish state. It remains unclear which British royal will visit Israel, but it has been speculated that it will likely be Prince Charles of Wales, heir to the throne. The report added that Queen Elizabeth would likely skip the trip due to her advanced age and health concerns. The royal family has traditionally shunned Israeli invitations for official state visits, but members of the family have visited in personal capacities and to attend dignitaries’ funerals. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin extended an invitation to the British royal family during his recent meeting with UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson in Jerusalem. Rivlin proposed that the visit coincide with celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the 1917 Balfour Declaration, which established British support for the creation of a Jewish state in the Middle East. “This is a very important year in the history of the relations between Israel and the United Kingdom,” Rivlin said. (Algemeiner)

2016, ‘ONE OF ISRAELI ECONOMY’S BEST YEARS’: Minister Moshe Kahlon praised his country’s economic advances late last week, saying, “It is safe to say that 2016 will be remembered as one of Israeli economy’s best years.” Israel’s economy grew 4 percent in 2016, exceeding the average growth rate of 1.7% recorded by other member states of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, according to new data released by the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics. Israel’s gross national product stood at 2.5% in 2015 and 3.2 % in 2014. The country’s business sector experienced 4.2% growth in 2016 compared to 2.3% in 2015, the bureau said. (Algemeiner) “He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper.” Ps 1:3

WORLD BASEBALL CLASSIC: ISRAEL CONTINUES TO SHOCK THE WORLD, BEATS CUBA 4-1: Team Israel continued to shock the world and defeated a well-regarded Cuba 4-1 on Sunday 12 March 2017 in the first quarterfinal game of the World Baseball Classic at the Tokyo Dome. The win brings Israel's record in the tournament to 4-0. Israel next faces the Netherlands at 12:00 P.M. Monday 13 March 2017. (Israel time). Cuba, with its rich baseball history and a national team that has won medals in all five Olympic baseball tournaments, was first on the board, after slugger Alfredo Despaigne drove a solo home run to left-center in the second inning. Catcher Ryan Lavarnway, awarded MVP for Pool A last week, dug Israel out from behind the 1-0 deficit in the fourth after driving Ike Davis home with an RBI double. Israel added two more runs in the sixth and finally sealed the deal with a run in the bottom of the eighth. The win over Cuba gives Israel a strong mental boost ahead of games against the Netherlands and host Japan to advance in the quarterfinal round, which is played as a round robin. One win in those two games could be enough to bring Israel to Dodger Stadium for the semifinals. Israel's success to date, a national team representing a country that has little national baseball culture, sweeping its bracket in the last round has surprised many. (Ha’aretz)

COLOSSUS PROBABLY DEPICTING PHARAOH OF EXODUS FOUND: Archaeologists from Egypt and Germany have found a massive eight-meter statue submerged in ground water in a Cairo slum that they say probably depicts Pharaoh Ramses II, who ruled Egypt more than 3,000 years ago. The discovery, hailed by the Antiquities Ministry as one of the most important ever, was made near the ruins of Ramses II’s temple in the ancient city of Heliopolis, located in the eastern part of modern-day Cairo. The most powerful and celebrated ruler of ancient Egypt, the pharaoh also known as Ramses the Great was the third of the Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt and ruled from 1279 to 1213 B.C. He led several military expeditions, including reasserting Egyptian control over Canaan, and expanded the Egyptian Empire to stretch from Syria in the east to Nubia in the south. Ramses II is often mentioned in popular culture as a candidate to be the pharaoh of the Exodus. On Thurs. 9 March 2017, archaeologists, officials, local residents, and members of the news media looked on as a massive forklift pulled the statue’s head out of the water. If the colossus is proven to depict Ramses II, it will be moved to the entrance of the Grand Egyptian Museum, set to open in 2018. ( J.Post)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

JNN News Update March 11, 2017

RAIN, HAIL EXPECTED IN ISRAEL OVER THE WEEKEND: After a week of unseasonably warm weather, forecasters say Israel is in for a cold and rainy weekend. Temperatures dropped late Thurs. night 9 March 2017, following a nearly week-long heat-wave. Expected to accompany the cool weather is precipitation across the country, including rain and hail beginning Friday evening. The rainy weather is likely to continue through the Purim holiday along with strong winds. (Arutz-7) This is an answer to prayer as Israel’s rainy season draws to a close this month. February was defined as an arid month throughout the country, according to data released on 6 March 2017 by the Water Authority. Continue to pray that much needed precipitation will bless the land during the remainder of March. “He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains, as before.” Joel 2:23

TRUMP EFFECT? ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION TO USA PLUMMETS: The number of illegal immigrants crossing into the United States from Mexico dropped dramatically during President Trump’s first month in office, Homeland Security chief John Kelly said earlier this week. While the border wall promised by Trump during the 2016 campaign will take another two years to materialize, Secretary Kelly said last month, the level of illegal immigration into the USA across the southern frontier declined sharply over the 30 days beginning with Trump’s inauguration on 20 Jan. 2017. According to Secretary Kelly, illegal border crossings from Mexico into the USA fell from 31,578 to just 18,762 – the lowest level in five years. What makes the decrease more striking, however, is its timing. Kelly pointed out that the time period in question – late January through February – typically sees a 10% to 20% rise. Secretary Kelly attributed the decline to the Trump administration’s heightened enforcement of immigration laws. “The drop in apprehensions shows a marked change in trends,” the Secretary said. (Arutz-7)

STATE DEPARTMENT REFUSES TO CONDEMN ISRAELI LAW BARRING BDS ACTIVISTS FROM ENTERING COUNTRY: A new law that would ban entry to Israel of foreigners who publicly support boycotts of the Jewish state is Israel’s “sovereign decision,” a State Department spokesperson said this week. In a media briefing on 8 March 2017, Mark Toner said that while the United States opposes boycotts of Israel, we also support firmly freedom of expression. That said, – this is a sovereign decision for Israel to make regarding its borders.” The law, adopted 6 March 2017 by the Knesset, bans entry to foreigners who publicly call for boycotting the Jewish state. According to the new law, the ban applies to any foreigner “who knowingly issues a public call for boycotting Israel that, given the content of the call and the circumstances in which it was issued, has a reasonable possibility of leading to the imposition of a boycott. It includes those who urge limiting boycotts to areas under Israeli control but not yet annexed, such as the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. (INN)

SENATE COMMITTEE BACKS FRIEDMAN AS ISRAEL ENVOY AMID ROBUST JEWISH WORLD DEBATE: The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thurs. 9 March 2017 approved President Trump’s designated ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, following a groundswell of support for the nominee from conservative and centrist pro-Israel organizations and staunch opposition from liberal Jewish groups. Following the committee-level approval, the full Senate is expected to vote on Friedman’s ambassadorship in the coming days. A day before their 12-9 vote in favor of Friedman’s appointment, Senate committee members had received a pro-Friedman letter signed by 17 pro-Israel organizations, such as the Zionist Organization of America, the Iron Dome Alliance and the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET). The Haym Salomon Center news and public policy group, meanwhile, had obtained a list of more than 30 organizations supportive of Friedman’s candidacy, updated from the letter to include organizations such as the World Jewish Congress and the American Jewish Congress. “David Friedman’s views represent the consensus of a clear majority of both Americans and Israelis, yet he’s been the target of the very vocal and radical anti-Israel Jewish left,” said Jeff Ballabon, an organizer of the letter to Senate committee members. “Letters thanking the president and urging the Senate to do the right thing, and outreach to responsible Jewish groups across the ideological and religious spectrum to go on the record supporting David, have now set the record straight that the mainstream of American Jews are solidly supportive of Mr. Friedman.” Jewish groups leaning to the political left had actively opposed Friedman’s nomination. (Jewish News Service)

WHO IS FUNDING THE ANTI-TRUMP DEMONSTRATIONS? Media Research Center revealed who funded the "Day without a Woman" demonstrations throughout America. Billionaire George Soros is behind the protests against Donald Trump according to a report by conservative think tank Media Research Center. Soros gave $246 million to groups behind Wednesday's 8 March, 2017 "Day Without a Woman" protest, as well as providing funds for the initial women's protest which took place in Washington in Jan. 2017. Wednesday was "International Women's Day," and schools in at least four states cancelled classes so teachers and staff members could participate in "Day Without a Woman" demonstrations. Movement organizers claimed the demonstration was not politically related and was only meant to spotlight gender inequality, critics say it is intended to protest President Trump. The strike was initiated by the same organizers of the historic Women’s March on Washington in January, which drew hundreds of thousands in protest of the president. A report released by the Center this week claims that Soros, whose net worth is estimated at 25 billion dollars - gave millions to groups behind the demonstration. 100 of the march's 544 groups received funding from Soros totaling $246 million, according to the Center's report. "Those donations represent just a fragment of Soros’ massive global influence," the Media Research Center said. "His Open Society Foundations have given away more than $13 billion to push his globalist, anti-American views." (INN)

WOMAN’S STRIKE’ PLATFORM DEMANDS ‘DECOLONIZATION OF PALESTINE’: The platform for a strike on Wed. 8 March 2017, presumably in support of feminism and women’s rights, did not limit itself to women’s issues, but also called “for the decolonization of Palestine.” The statement on “Palestine” is included in a section on “Antiracist and Anti-imperialist Feminism” in the platform for the USA affiliate of the International Women’s Strike. There is no mention of the Islamic countries in which honor killings, gender mutilation and suppression of women's freedom are the norm. It grouped solidarity with “Palestine” with other causes, including Black Lives Matter, “the struggle against police brutality and mass incarceration,” and immigrant rights.

Critics of the platform included Emily Shire, the politics editor of the women’s news site Bustle. She wrote in a NY Times op-ed that she was “troubled” by the platform’s Israel-bashing. “I find it troubling that embracing such a view is considered an essential part of an event that is supposed to unite feminists,” she wrote. “I am happy to debate Middle East politics or listen to critiques of Israeli policies. But why should criticism of Israel be key to feminism in 2017?” Shire also criticized the strike for the leadership position and involvement of Rasmea Odeh, a Palestinian Arab terrorist convicted and sentenced by an Israeli military court in 1970 to life in prison for two bombing attacks, including one in 1969 that murdered two Israelis. The niece of one of the victims of the 1969 attack also criticized the strike over Odeh’s involvement. “But, explain how my family is supposed to reconcile the reality that the woman who stripped my uncle of his life is now deemed a hero by many of my fellow Americans. What justification is there for Rasmea Odeh, a woman who killed two people with the intention of killing more to lead a peaceful fight for human rights?” Terry Joffe Benaryeh wrote in an op-ed published last week on Huffington Post. (Jerusalem Post)

PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY PRESIDENT ABBAS MEETS WITH RELEASED TERRORISTS, VOWS TO ‘END SUFFERING OF HEROIC BROTHERS IN OCCUPATION’S PRISONS’: Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who is often touted by the West as a “peace partner” for Israel, recently met with Palestinian Arabs who carried out terrorist attacks and with the family of a terrorist, the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) revealed. During meetings this week with terrorists released from Israeli prisons, PA President Abbas vowed to “make every effort to end the suffering of our heroic brothers [terrorists] and release them from the occupation’s prisons so they can take part in building the homeland for which they sacrificed,” MEME reported on 8 March 2017. The terrorists with whom Abbas met were 14-year-old Osama Zaidat, shot while attempting to stab Israelis in Kiryat Arba last September - and recently released from detention - and Imad Asaf who took part in the Second Intifada in 2000 and was recently let out of jail. He also greeted members of the family of Muhammad Al-Jallad, who died of his wounds after being shot in Nov. 2016 while attempting to carry out a stabbing attack at a checkpoint.

According to MEMRI, this is but one of many instances of Abbas’ emphasis on his efforts to free prisoners. At the Seventh Fatah Conference last Dec. 2016 Abbas similarly praised senior Fatah perpetrators of attacks, including the 2001 assassination of Israeli minister Rehavam Ze’evi, saying: “We remember the martyrs, the wounded and the prisoners and their record. We salute our brave prisoners and respect them. We will not forget our fighting comrades or our glorious woman prisoners.” Abbas’ meetings this week come on the heels of discussions in the USA and Europe about the continued provision of financial aid to the PA, when its leaders encourage and incentivize terrorism. Late last month, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham reintroduced legislation that would cut off American funding of the PA if it continues to pay monetary rewards to terrorists and their families. (Algemeiner) On a regular basis Palestinian Authority leaders glorify, as heroes, those who carry out terrorist attacks against Israel. The two-state dream where Israel and Palestinians can live side by side in peace and security is neither a reality, nor is it a vision on the part of those who further violence. Intercede that the Palestinian Authority will increasingly feel the harsh penalties of promoting terrorism, educating its youth to hate Israel, and glorifying terrorist murderers as heroes.

HAMAS TRAINS UNRWA PUPILS TO BECOME TERRORISTS: An excerpt from an upcoming documentary on the relationship between the Hamas terrorist organization and UNRWA shows Gazan children being led into a mock terror tunnel, where they are taught how to attack an Israeli kibbutz. "The UNRWA kids were recruited by Hamas to help build the tunnels, and then infiltrate through the tunnels," said David Bedein, the director of the Center for Near East Policy Research, which is producing the documentary. Bedein said that Hamas has diverted international aid to construct tunnels with which to attack Israel. "At the same time, Hamas has been getting full supplies, including from Israel, for the past year, and they are able to get cement to continue building the tunnels." He said that the tunnel in the video was a "model tunnel that they built" for training purposes, including the training of school children to kill Israelis. "Hamas controls the UNRWA teacher's union, and Hamas comes into the schools and takes the children for this training as one of their after-school activities." (Arutz-7)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff

JNN News Update March 8, 2017

ISRAEL MAKES IT TWO WINS IN A ROW IN WORLD BASEBALL CLASSIC: Israel's fairy-tale run at the World Baseball Classic continued on Tues. 7 March 2017, with a resounding 15-7 rout of Chinese Taipei in Seoul, moving the blue-and-white to the brink of qualification for the last eight of the tournament. Israel's national team got its campaign off to a dream start the previous day, claiming a 2-1 win in 10 innings against host South Korea, which is ranked No. 3 in the world and is a two-time medalist at the WBC. Israel dominated Chinese Taipei, which is ranked No. 4, from the start of Tuesday's affair, scoring four runs in the first inning. Israel increased its lead to 6-0 in the third, and despite allowing three runs in the sixth inning, effectively secured the victory by scoring five more times in the seventh. Pitcher Corey Baker got the win for Israel, which registered 20 hits in all, allowing three hits and no runs in 4.2 innings. Israel will complete its Pool A games when it faces the Netherlands on Thurs. 9 March 2017, but already looks set for a place in the last eight. The top two teams in the pool will advance to second round Pool E, which will be played in Tokyo, Japan. The top two in Pool E will progress to the semifinals at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. (J.Post)

SIGN OF THE TIMES: MORE ROADS – AND EVEN MORE CARS: The State of Israel continues to grow apace, symbolized by increasing traffic jams and density. In 2016 alone, the number of miles traveled on Israel roads by motor vehicles jumped by 3.4 billion kilometers, or 6.2%, to over 58 billion kilometers. The number of new cars sold in 2016 was 286,000 – 12.5% more than the year before. Already in 2014, Israel's roads and highways were the most crowded among the 35 member countries of the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), with more than 2,500 vehicles per road-kilometer. The situation has only grown more acute since then. Israel is building more roads, but cannot keep up with the increase in vehicles. Between 2000 and the end of 2015, miles traveled grew by 50% and the number of cars jumped by 70% - while road area grew by only 40%. The solution clearly lies in public transportation. Many projects are underway to this end, including new or expanded light rail routes in Israel's three largest cities (Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa), and expanded train routes between cities and various parts of the countries. However, only 47% of the objectives set for 2016 for these programs were met. It can therefore be expected that as Aliyah and Israel's birth rate thankfully increase, the problems will not go away – but they are being worked on. (Arutz-7) With the increase of Israel’s population and with it more cars and accidents on the road, please pray for an improvement in Israel’s road safety awareness and courtesy.

MYSTERIOUS, ANCIENT STONE MONUMENT UNEARTHED IN GALILEE: Archaeologists from Tel Hai College, the Israel Antiquities Authority and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem announced the discovery of a 4,000-year-old dolmen, a large table-like stone structure, near Kibbutz Shamir in the Upper Galilee. The dolmen is marked by its huge dimensions and the artistic decorations engraved in its ceiling. The dolmen was discovered inside a large chamber measuring 2 by 3 meters, and was covered by an enormous stone estimated to weigh at least 50 tons, one of the largest stones ever used in the construction of dolmens in the Middle East. The dolmen itself was enclosed in an enormous stone heap (tumulus) approximately 20 meters in diameter, and its stones are estimated to weigh a minimum of 400 tons. At least four smaller dolmens that were positioned at the foot of the decorated dolmen were identified inside the stone heap. “In other words, what we have here is a huge monumental structure built hierarchically (with a main cell and secondary cells). This is the first time such a hierarchical dolmen has been identified in the Middle East,” said the IAA in a release. Experts said the latest find sheds new light on the nature of dolmens in ancient Israel.

Uri Berger, an archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority and partner in the study said “The engraved shapes depict a straight line going to the center of an arc. About fifteen such engravings were documented on the ceiling of the dolmen, spread out in a kind of arc along the ceiling. No parallels exist for these shapes in the engraved rock drawings of the Middle East, and their significance remains a mystery.” Experts also said the dolmen provides evidence of a significant and established governmental system in the region during the Bronze Age. “Archaeologists tend to interpret the past based on material finds,” said the IAA. “The absence of cities, large settlements and monumental buildings attests to the collapse of the governmental and economic systems during a ‘dark period’ in history. The dolmens tell a different story about the period – a story about a society that had a complex governmental and economic system that executed monumental engineering projects but did not leave behind any other archaeological evidence. The gigantic dolmen at Kibbutz Shamir is without doubt an indication of public construction,” added Professor Sharon, “that required a significant amount of manpower over a considerable period of time. During that time all of those people had to be housed and fed. The building of such a huge construction necessitated knowledge of engineering and architecture that small nomadic groups did not usually possess. And even more importantly, a strong system of government was required here that could assemble a large amount of manpower, provide for the personnel and above all direct the implementation and control of a large and lengthy project.” (Israel News) Giants anybody?

ARCHAEOLOGISTS DISCOVER 2,000-YEAR-OLD ‘EMPEROR’S ROAD’ NEAR BEIT SHEMESH: A wide and well-preserved 2,000-year-old road dating to the Roman period was unearthed last month during archaeological excavations carried out by the Israel Antiquities Authority near Beit Shemesh. On 7 March 2017, Irina Zilberbod, director of the excavation on behalf of the IAA, said the road was up to 6 meters wide, and stretched for approximately 1.5 kilometers. “The road was apparently built to link the Roman settlement that existed in the vicinity of Beit Natif with the main highway known as the ‘Emperor’s Road,’” said Zilberbod. Ancient coins were also discovered between the pavement stones, including one from the second year of the Great Revolt in 67 AD; one from the Umayyad period; one from the prefect of Judea, Pontius Pilate, dating to 29 AD; and a coin of Agrippa I from 41 AD, that was minted in Jerusalem. Amit Shadman, the Authority’s district archaeologist for Judea, said the ancient road passed close to the Israel National Trail. “We believe that it will spark interest among hikers,” said Shadman, noting that the IAA and Mei Shemesh Corporation have agreed that the road will be conserved for the public’s benefit. (J.Post)

KNESSET BANS ENTRY TO FOREIGNERS CALLING FOR BOYCOTTS OF ISRAEL: Israel has enacted a law banning entry to foreigners who publicly call for boycotting the Jewish state or its settlements. The Knesset passed the law by a vote of 46-28 on Mon. 6 March 2017. The ban applies to any foreigner “who knowingly issues a public call for boycotting Israel that, given the content of the call and the circumstances in which it was issued, has a reasonable possibility of leading to the imposition of a boycott.” It includes those who urge boycotting areas under Israeli control, such as the Judea & Samaria settlements. The measure was meant to target groups, rather than individuals, according to Roy Folkman, a lawmaker from the Kulanu party. (JTA) “Mockers stir up a city, but the wise turn away anger.” Prov 29:8

RECORD LOW RAINFALL IN FEBRUARY: February was defined as an arid month throughout the country, according to data released Mon. 6 March 2017 by the Water Authority. In the coastal aquifers, the amount of precipitation during the month was 50-60% of the annual average for February. The northern aquifers suffered a particularly arid month with just 10% of the annual average precipitation in the Kinneret aquifer. For some of the weather stations, this was a record low amount of precipitation for February. This is the fourth consecutive year that the north is suffering from a dearth in rainfall. Despite the policy of the Water Authority to reduce to an absolute minimum the amount of water pumped from the Sea of Galilee, the water level is under the red line and the north is suffering from a water shortage expected to get more severe during the coming summer months. The Water Authority has been investing in desalination processes in order to maintain the water reserves in Israel. At present more than half of the water provided for different uses are man-made, employing desalination and recycling methods. The authority stated that it intends to set up a desalination plant in the Western Galilee which will reinforce water resources. (Arutz-7) Israel’s rainy season is fast coming to a close. Intercede that abundant showers will bless the land during the remainder of March.

CONSERVATIVE SYNAGOGUES VOTE TO ALLOW NON-JEWS AS MEMBERS: The umbrella body for Conservative synagogues approved a resolution to allow individual congregations to decide whether to grant membership to non-Jews. The resolution was passed last week during a Special Meeting of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism General Assembly. The measure passed overwhelmingly by a vote of 94 to 8 with one abstention. “USCJ, as a valued and trusted partner, is committed to assisting welcoming, vibrant, and caring Jewish communities to fully engage the spiritual gifts of all community members. We celebrate the diversity among and within our groups and encourage the engagement of all those who seek a spiritual and communal home in an authentic and dynamic Jewish setting. We call on all of our synagogues to open their doors wide to all who want to enter,” reads the commentary to the new standard.” The change was endorsed by the major Conservative institutions in the United States. (INN)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff

JNN News Update Mar. 6, 2017

‘IRAN IS TRYING TO FORCE US TO OPEN A FRONT IN THE GOLAN’: Israeli PM Netanyahu spoke on 5 March, 2017 about his upcoming meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. At their discussion scheduled for Thurs. 9 March 2017, Netanyahu intends to speak with Putin about Israel's opposition to the Iranian attempts to establish a permanent military and naval presence in Syria. "On Thursday I will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow. One of the most important issues we will discuss is Iran's attempt to make an agreement with Syria. With or without Syria's agreement, Iran will attempt to establish a permanent military presence in Syria, both on land and at sea. In fact, Iran is attempting to slowly open a front in the Golan Heights. I will tell President Putin about my extreme opposition to this plan, and about the possibility Israel will choose to attack. I hope we will be able to come to the understandings necessary to prevent confrontations between Russian and Israeli forces - just as we have been able to do until now." (Arutz-7) Be prayerfully alert to events taking place in countries adverse to the Jewish state on the other side of Israel’s northern borders. This region, most immediately, includes Syria and Lebanon, out of which terrorists groups rabidly hostile to Israel and supported by Iran, operate. Pray that Iran will not be allowed to establish a permanent military and naval presence in Syria. End time alliance of nations that will come against Israel include: Magog (southern portion of the former Soviet Union; (Rosh - Russia; Meshech and Tubal) - Turkey; Persia (Iran); Cush – (Sudan); Put- (Libya). Current headlines suggest many of these players are coming together in ways that will lead to a proactive invasion force against Israel. Intercede for Israel’s divine wisdom and discernment in its dealings with Russia, and for the safety of Israel’s northern border communities.

IRAN AXIS IN SYRIA LEADS ISRAELI SECURITY CONCERNS: "The most important strategic issue we're currently facing is the strengthening of the Shiite axis led by Iran in Syria, especially after the fall of Aleppo," Hagai Tzuriel, director-general of Israel's Intelligence Ministry who served for 28 years in the Mossad, told media sources. Recent developments in Syria have created "a strong imbalance in the region to Iran's benefit. Yet at the same time, since Moscow decided to take a more engaged role in actively supporting the Assad regime, Iran's role as Damascus' main backer has been somewhat diminished. The Russians have managed to become the key player with only a few dozen aircraft. That's proof that political will and the readiness to use military force are key. For Israel, it is important to see the USA remaining active in Syria and the region," Tzuriel said. Continued USA involvement is crucial to Israel's interest in seeing Iran kept from extending hegemony to Syria, allowing the Islamic Republic to link Tehran and Beirut.

He said President Obama's decision, in 2013, to not use military force against Assad's regime despite its use of chemical weapons, "was a pivotal moment for the entire region. This moment changed everything. It showed Putin that the USA was not willing to use force. It opened the door for Russia to take center stage." For Israel, the most important issue is making sure Iran and its proxies aren't able to set up a base in Syria from which to attack Israel. "If Iran and Hezbollah manage to base themselves in Syria, it would be a permanent source of instability in the entire region," he said, referring specifically to the threat of an Iranian naval base on the Mediterranean. (Times of Israel)

‘LEBANESE ARMY WILL FIGHT ALONGSIDE HEZBOLLAH IN A WAR WITH ISRAEL': Since the Second Lebanese War between Israel and the Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah in 2006, the Lebanese army has rearmed itself, strengthening its ability in the air as well as on the ground and sea, with the help of the United States, France and Saudi Arabia. In the past two years, a new challenge has risen on the northern front. Should Israel go to war with Hezbollah, the Lebanese army would fight on the Shi’ite terrorist organization’s side, Israeli security officials said on Friday, 3 March 2017. According to the officials, unlike Israel’s 2006 war with Hezbollah in Lebanon, a future war would feature the Lebanese Armed Forces on Hezbollah’s side. The army had originally rearmed itself in order to deal with internal terrorism, however they also strengthened their ability to fight an army such as the IDF. While the army may not have specifically advanced weaponry, they do currently have more ability than before to fight the IDF, including more precise anti-tank rockets. The strengthening came from the army’s rearming as well as its commander- in-chief, Michel Naim Aoun and Hezbollah.” Aoun, 82 years old, was once a Lebanese Armed Forces officer, and in the 1980s was an ally to Israel. He has since changed his views, winning wider support and taking Lebanon’s presidential office in October 2016. In an interview with Egyptian TV two weeks ago, Aoun hinted that Hezbollah and the Lebanese Armed Forces are working side-by-side. “The Lebanese army is not strong enough to fight Israel face-to-face,” he stated. “Because of that, Hezbollah is necessary. There is no contradiction between them." (J.Post)

JORDAN HANGS 10 FOR ATTACKS LINKED TO ISLAMIC EXTREMISM: Jordan on 4 Jan. 2017 executed 10 prisoners with ties to Islamic extremism who carried out five shootings and a bombing since 2003. It was the largest round of executions in the kingdom in at least a decade. Among those killed in the attacks were a British tourist, an outspoken Jordanian critic of Islamic extremism and members of the Jordanian security forces. Saturday’s executions were the first since pro-Western Jordan launched a crackdown on Islamic terrorists two years ago, in response to the killing of a captured Jordanian fighter pilot by the ISIS group. Jordan is a part of a USA-led military coalition against ISIS. Government spokesman, Mohammed Momani, said the executions signal that “those who commit terrorism and threaten our national security will find the same destiny.” (Washington Times)

PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY: 85% SAY THEY WANT SHARIA LAW: The Jerusalem Media & Communication Centre (JMCC) was established in 1988 by an Arab group of journalists and researchers in areas of Judea & Samaria now under Palestinian Authority control. In its most recent 2017 poll, 1199 PA residents people over the age of 18, randomly selected, were interviewed face-to-face The interviews were conducted in randomly selected homes in Gaza, Judea and Samaria. Over 85% (!) said that the Palestinian Personal Status Law must be based on the principles of Islamic Sharia. Half of these said it must be exclusively Sharia, while the other half said it should be based both on Sharia and civil law. Only 14.7% said it should be based only on civil law. Another question was if they feel that Mahmoud Abbas "is performing his job as President of the PA: in a good, average or in a bad way?" 35.4% said, "bad," while 28.7% said, "good." It should be noted that in January 2005, Abbas was elected to head the PA until Jan. 2009; he is now in the 13th year of his four-year term. He has used the conflict between his Fatah faction and Hamas as an excuse to remain in power, as no elections have been held since he took office. 46.9% of the respondents said they prefer that elections be held even before a reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas is achieved. (Arutz-7)

SHARIA LAW: A BRIEF REVIEW: Sharia is the body of Islamic law implemented in Muslim countries across the world. All aspects of a Muslim's life are governed by Sharia, which is derived from a combination of sources including the Koran, the Hadith - the sayings and conduct of the prophet Muhammad - and fatwas, the rulings of Islamic scholars. Until recently, more modern Islamic nations operated a dual legal system with elements of secular law alongside it. As radical fundamentals have increasingly come to power in nations that now include even Turkey, the trend shifts dangerously. Terrorist organizations such as ISIS, Hezbollah, Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and other jihadist groups grasp for supremacy in order to rule wholly by the most primitive forms of Sharia. Unless prevented, the results will render women permanently without rights and in severe subjection to Muslim fathers, husbands and all male members of the family. It will shift entire populations backward to darkest centuries of oppression and cruelty. In a number of countries Sharia law indeed sanctions and carries out draconian penalties for crimes such as theft, adultery and blasphemy. Punishments include amputation of limbs, also death by stoning or lashes. (JNN) Pray the Gospel will go forth and triumph in these nations standing on the edge of or moving further into darkness.

USA DELEGATION IN ISRAEL TO STUDY RELOCATION OF EMBASSY TO JERUSALEM: An official United States delegation led by Congressman Ron DeSantis (R-FL) visited Israel on March 4-5, 2017 to study the possibility of relocating the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The delegation has been here “to learn first-hand what it will mean to move the USA Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” said Ruth Lieberman, a friend of DeSantis and a political advisor in Israel. “Its leadership intends to return to Congress with a report and a deeper understanding of what to expect, and of some of the decisions that have to be made as well,” Lieberman said. DeSantis chairs the subcommittee for National Security for the USA House Oversight Committee. The delegation met with PM Netanyahu and other Israeli political leaders during their visit. USA President Donald Trump had promised to relocate the embassy during his campaign for the White House. The delegation’s visit is the first sign that there might be some movement on the issue. Palestinian and Jordanian leaders have warned the USA that moving the embassy could spark violence in Israel and the Palestinian territories, as well as in the Middle East region as a whole. (J. Post)

HEADSTONES OVERTURNED IN NEW YORK CEMETERY: Several headstones at Brooklyn's predominantly Jewish Washington Cemetery were vandalized on 4 March 2017. The New York Police Department and the Hate Crimes Division are investigating the incident's background. Israeli Consul in New York, Danny Dayan, told Kol Israel Radio the following morning that the Jewish community is worried about the recent wave of anti-Semitism in the USA. He also said parents are pulling their students out of Jewish community centers. However, Dayan said those who believe there is a connection between the anti-Semitic incidents and President Trump's election are mistaken and have no basis for their claims. In addition, he pointed out that many anti-Semites supported Bernie Sanders. This is not the first time an American Jewish cemetery has been vandalized. Last Thurs, 2 March 2017, headstones were toppled at the Rochester cemetery in New York. Mere days before that dozens of tombstones were overturned at the Jewish cemetery in Philadelphia. (Arutz-7)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff

JNN News Update Mar. 3, 2017

TRUMP OPENS FIRST ADDRESS TO CONGRESS CONDEMNING ANTI-SEMITISM: USA President Donald Trump began his first address to a joint session of Congress by condemning anti-Semitism as a form of hate and evil and by offering an homage to civil rights amid a spate of attacks on Jewish institutions nationwide. "Tonight, as we mark the conclusion of our celebration of Black History Month, we are reminded of our nation's path toward civil rights and the work that still remains," Trump said. "Recent threats targeting Jewish community centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, as well as last week's shooting in Kansas City, remind us that while we may be a nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms. Each American generation passes the torch of truth, liberty and justice – in an unbroken chain all the way down to the present," the president added. "That torch is now in our hands. And we will use it to light up the world." Trump delivered his first address to the legislature on Tues. 28 Feb. 2017 amid a spike in anti-Semitic incidents across the country, including over 75 reported bomb threats to Jewish institutions, Nazi-themed vandalism in Jewish neighborhoods and the desecration of two Jewish cemeteries in Missouri and Pennsylvania. (J. Post)

TRUMP’S UNHRC REPRESENTATIVE: 'ENOUGH WITH THE ISRAEL OBSESSION': USA President Donald Trump's administration on Wed. 1 March 2017, sharply criticized the UN Human Rights Committee for its "obsession with Israel." Speaking at the Geneva forum, Deputy Secretary of State Assistant Erin Barclay said, "The United States remains deeply troubled by the Council’s consistent unfair and unbalanced focus on one democratic country, Israel. In order for this Council to have any credibility, let alone success, it must move away from its unbalanced and unproductive positions. "As we consider our future engagements, my government will be considering the Council's actions with an eye toward reform to more fully achieve the Council's mission to protect and promote human rights." Barclay also mentioned the USA was debating whether or not to stay in the UNHRC or not - and that the final decision would depend on agenda. The United States is currently an elected member of the 47-state Geneva forum where its three-year term ends in 2019. On 20 Feb. 2017, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley similarly slammed the United Nations Security Council for their "obsessing over Israel." On February 26, the USA announced it was considering leaving the UNHRC. (Arutz-7)

TOP USA SENATOR REINTRODUCES BILL TO CUT OFF AMERICAN FUNDING OF PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY FOR ‘BARBARIC’ PRACTICE OF MONETARILY REWARDING TERRORISTS: A prominent USA senator reintroduced legislation on Tues. 28 Feb. 2017 that would cut off American funding of the Palestinian Authority if it continues to pay monetary rewards to terrorists and their families. “Not only are Israelis victims of this barbaric practice; American citizens like Taylor Force are victims of this practice,” Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said at a Capitol Hill press conference on Tuesday. Graham was referring to the 28-year-old West Point graduate who was murdered in a stabbing attack carried out by a Palestinian terrorist in Tel Aviv last March and for whom the bill was named. “We’re going to change this. We’re going to get the Palestinian Authority’s attention by withholding their money.” Graham was joined at the event by Republican Senators Roy Blunt of Missouri and Tom Cotton of Arkansas, as well as Republican Congressmen Doug Lamborn of Colorado - who is behind the House companion bill to the legislation - and Lee Zeldin of New York. “What the Taylor Force act will do is give the Palestinian Authority a clear choice - to either stop doing what you’re doing or you won’t have our money, at least, to do it with,” Blunt said. “Taxpayer dollars are no longer going to subsidize the murder of American citizens, or Israeli citizens,” Cotton stated. “We’re going to do everything in our power to make this bill into a law.” Graham noted he was “confident” that President Donald Trump would approve the bill if it is passed by Congress. (Algemeiner) Please intercede that this bill will be passed by Congress and approved by President Trump. Terrorists and their families should not be rewarded, period – let alone by the American government and USA taxpayers!

MEET THE TERRORIST BEHIND THE NEXT WOMAN’S MARCH: Here’s the left’s next great idea for bringing down President Trump; another women’s march, which means another public instance of Trump haters shouting slogans to one another and mistaking it for constructive politics. On 8 March 2017, organizers have in mind a “general strike” called the Day without a Woman. In a manifesto published on 6 Feb. 2017, the brains behind the movement are calling for a “new wave of militant feminist struggle.” That’s right: militant, not peaceful. The document was co-authored by, among others, Rasmea Yousef Odeh, a convicted terrorist. Odeh, a Palestinian, was convicted in Israel in 1970 for her part in two terrorist bombings, one of which killed two students while they were shopping for groceries. She spent 10 years in prison for her crimes. She then managed to become a USA citizen in 2004 by lying about her past (great detective work, INS: Next time, use Google) but was subsequently convicted, in 2014, of immigration fraud for the falsehoods. However, she won the right to a new trial (set for this spring) by claiming she had been suffering from PTSD at the time she lied on her application.

Another co-author, Angela Davis, is a Stalinist professor and longtime supporter of the Black Panthers. Davis is best known for being acquitted in a 1972 trial after three guns she bought were used in a courtroom shootout that resulted in the death of a judge. She celebrated by going to Cuba. A third co-author, Tithi Bhattacharya, praised Maoism in an essay for the International Socialist Review, noting that Maoists are “on the terrorist list of the USA State Department, Canada, and the European Union,” which she called an indication that “Maoists are back in the news and by all accounts they are fighting against all the right people.” You know you’re dealing with extremism when someone admits to hating Canada. The International Women’s Strike is meant to be a grassroots affair, with womensmarch.com promising more information about how to participate in local protests across the USA. Women around the country are being urged to walk off their jobs and join a demonstration near them. According to media reports, women should spend their day “blocking roads, bridges, and squares, abstaining from domestic, care and sex work” and “boycotting” pro-Trump businesses. Also every woman is supposed to wear red in solidarity. The bristling tone of the manifesto and its call for a “militant” uprising are yet another indicator that liberals are increasingly willing to justify violence in the name of opposing Trump. (NY Post)

FACEBOOK RESTORES FATAH ACCOUNT, APOLOGIZES TO PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS: To the stunned approval of Israel and its supporters, Facebook earlier this week shut down the official account of the ruling Palestinian faction, Fatah. Someone apparently felt Fatah had violated Facebook community standards by posting an old photo of its former leader, Yasser Arafat, posing with a rifle. Standing next to Arafat is Mahmoud al-Alul, who was recently elected Fatah deputy chairman. On Wed. 1 March 2017, Facebook apologized for the “mishap” and reinstated the Fatah page. “The page was removed in error and restored as soon as we were able to investigate. We apologize for this mistake,” a Facebook spokesman was quoted as saying. Sadly, Fatah’s years of posts inciting murderous violence against Israeli Jews have failed to triggered Facebook’s censors. Is it within Facebook’s guidelines for Fatah to boast, as it did last August, of its killing of more than 11,000 Israelis, far more than any other Palestinian group? (Israel Today)

MILLIONAIRES CAN’T FLEE THIS EUROPEAN COUNTRY FAST ENOUGH: There’s been a surge in the number of millionaires around the world who are changing countries. Some 82,000 high-net-worth individuals, defined as those who have assets over $1 million, left their home countries last year, versus 64,000 in 2015, according to the “Global Health Review: Worldwide Wealth and Wealth Migration Trends.” For the second consecutive year, Australia was the No. 1 country welcoming millionaire migrants, beating even the USA. There was a 38 percent jump in millionaire migrants to Australia (11,000 last year versus 8,000 in 2015) and a 43% increase in those migrants to the USA over the same period (10,000 in 2016 versus 7,000). High-net-worth individuals, however, fled France last year in greater numbers than any other country. Some 12,000 millionaires left France last year, versus 10,000 in 2015, a gain of 20%. There have been several terror attacks in France in recent years. And there are winds of political change blowing: Earlier this month, far-right candidate Marine Le Pen launched her presidential campaign with a hardline speech on immigration and globalization, leading some commentators to say Le Pen, if she won, could pull France out of the European Union in a “Frexit.” (NY Post) France is one of the leading nations pressuring the Jewish state to jump into an immediate two state solution with the Palestinian Authority, a former Israel-hating terrorist group morphed into an incognito terrorist group that still hates Israel. In fact, the PA- Israel’s so called “peace partner” - misses no opportunity to glorify and reward those who wound and kill Jewish Israelis and refuses to hold direct peace negotiations with the Jewish state. PA text books are filled with anti-Israel bias as well as its television programs, especially children’s programs, which promote hatred of Israel and glorify jihad. Still, France thinks the Palestinian Authority deserves to have a state of its own carved out of Israel’s land and beloved city, Jerusalem. It could be mere co-incidence that things aren’t going so well for France these days - rather than because it exhibits such lack of understanding and support for Israel’s position and people - but more likely there’s a connection between God’s word and France’s mounting economic, political and terrorism setbacks:“I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse.” Gen. 12:3

WHY THE USA SHOULD RECOGNIZE ISRAEL’S SOVEREIGNTY OVER THE GOLAN HEIGHTS: During Israeli PM Netanyahu's recent visit to Washington he asked the USA to recognize Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights. Israel captured 2/3 of the Golan territory from Syria in the 1967 war and annexed it in 1981. The strategic highlands represented less than 1% of Syrian land, yet under their control it served as a forward position for Syrian artillery to regularly shell northern Israel and for Palestinian Fatah to launch regular cross-border raids. The risk of returning the Golan Heights should be measured against the fact that Iran is actively setting up another forward command along Israel's border with Syria. Israelis are acutely aware that the reward for giving up land has been the shower of rockets and mortars from Hizbullah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza. Had Israel accepted Syria's previous territorial demands, Iran, Hizbullah or ISIS would be threatening Israel today from their perch along the Golan plateau. At this point, Israel has returned 80% of the land it gained in the 1967 war. Syria has missed the boat; the ship has already sailed. (J. Post)

The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.
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