The June issue of Israel Today Magazine is now available!

The June issue of Israel Today Magazine is now available!
Exclusively for subscribers to Israel Today Magazine:
Israel celebrates 68 years
Israeli right-wing ideology to the test
Settlement Expo: "We are not visitors here"
Do Israeli politicians support Messianic lobbyists?
Israeli Christians: "If Israel goes, we go"

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Palestinian PM Praises Nazi-Aligned Muslim Leader

The prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, Rami Hamdallah, stated earlier this month that he views former Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini as a “pure-hearted son” of the “Palestinian nation.”

Hamdallah made his remarks at a conference in Ramallah where he accused Israel of trying to erase the “Arab identity” of Jerusalem.

As most are aware, Haj Amin al-Husseini, as leader of the local Arab population during World War II, infamously sided with Adolf Hitler and his Nazi regime.

Al-Husseini met numerous times with Hitler, and helped the Nazis recruit Muslim troops in the Balkan states. He also agreed with the Nazis on the extermination of all Jews in the Holy Land following Germany’s expected victory over the Allies.

Speaking at the same conference, Yusuf Ida’is, the Palestinian Authority’s minister of holy sites, declared that the Palestinians today “walk in [al-Husseini’s] path according to the instruction of President Mahmoud Abbas.”

Abbas is held aloft by Israeli and Western leaders as a “moderate” and genuine peace partner, despite his apparent continued affinity for the Nazis and what they did to the Jews.


Iran: We Can Destroy Israel in Minutes

A top Iranian military official this week said the Islamic Republic has the means to destroy all of Israel in a matter of minutes.

“If the Supreme Leader’s orders [are] to be executed, with the abilities and the equipment at our disposal, we will raze the Zionist regime in less than eight minutes,” Ahmad Karimpour, an advisor to Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, told reporters.

The statement is concerning in light of Iran’s recent ballistic missile tests.

According to the Iranian regime, its new missiles boast pinpoint accuracy with a range of 2,000 miles, meaning they can hit all of the Jewish state.

Karimpour’s remarks also hinted at Iran’s continued defiance vis-a-via its nuclear arms program.

Earlier this week, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei declared that his nation would continue to bolster its ballistic missile arsenal, and there’s not a “damn thing” America and the West can do about it.


More Evidence of Jerusalem's Glorious Past

The IAA excavated the former Schneller army base ahead of the planned construction of residential buildings on the site.

Various discoveries were made during the dig, including a large winery from either the Roman or Byzantine period, around 1,600 years ago. Archaeologists found a white mosaic surface surrounding a pit that was part of the wine press used to extract juice from grapes.

Eight structures around the press were probably used for storing grapes and possibly to blend wine. Archeologists surmised that the press was part of a large manor house whose residents may have traded in wine.

"Whenever one turns over a stone, ancient artifacts will be found related to Jerusalem's glorious past,” said archaeologist Alex Wiegmann, excavation director on behalf of the IAA. “The archaeological finds discovered here help paint a living, vibrant and dynamic picture of Jerusalem as it was in ancient times up until the modern era.”

Remains of a bathhouse were also found, including terra cotta pipes used to heat the bathing facility and clay bricks stamped with the title of the Tenth Roman Legion, one of the four legions that took part in the siege and destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. Units of the legion remained garrisoned in the city until around 300 CE.

The close proximity of the Schneller site to the International Conference Center, where the remains of a large pottery and brick production center were previously found, led archaeologists to believe that Schneller was an auxiliary to the main site.

Excavations and investigations indicate that the remains of a Jewish community at the Schneller compound dated from the late Second Temple period, around the time of Jesus.

During its more recent history, the site housed the Schneller orphanage from 1860 until World War II. During the British Mandate its German occupants were expelled and it became a military base. In 1948 it was taken over by the Haganah — the precursor to the IDF — and it later became an IDF military base that was active until it was closed in 2008.

You can help us in the "battle for the truth" by supporting us in our new media effort!


68 Facts You Probably Didn't Know About Israel

To mark Israel’s 68th Independence Day, the Foreign Ministry produced this video highlighting 68 facts about modern Israel of which most people are unaware.

There are some facts that are today well-known, such as Israel’s disproportionate number of technological achievements, and some that are less known, such as Israelis’ tremendous love for dogs and planting trees.

With the way the mainstream international media covers the region, it’s easy to think of Israel as little more than a place of conflict and ancient tourist sites. But as the above video demonstrates, it’s so much more than that.


Shooting Inside the Humvee

The downward spiral of newly resigned Minister of Defense Moshe (Boogie) Ya'alon began with his premature conviction of Elor Azaria, the soldier who shot dead a wounded terrorist, and ended with what seemed to be his approval of the IDF's deputy chief-of-staff's comparison of some right-wing Israelis to Nazi Germany.

Insinuating that Israel's right-wing constituency is verging on a slippery-slope fall leading to Nazism is now being supported by former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, who said on Channel 10 during the Friday night news show that "the government of Israel was infected by shoots of fascism … life-seeking Zionism and shoots of fascism can't coexist." 

Barak pointed to the situation of pre-World War II Europe to make the point that Western democracies are vulnerable to fascism.

As in other instances, this is another case where an important Israeli figure is making liberal democracy a moral issue, rather than just letting it be a political system. This is a transparent attempt to create a moral divide between the liberal sons of light and the conservatives, who alone allow the shadows of darkness to lurk in their midst. 

More disturbing is the failure to realize that the fascist-based argument against a major Zionist faction is a double-edge sword for, it must be remembered, one of fascism's distinctive traits is ethnic superiority. Given that Israel is a Jewish state, once fascism is brought into the ideological fray there is no way to shut the mouths of those labeling all Zionists as fascists.

In the hope that Barak didn't intend such a conclusion, given George Orwell's observation – "I have heard [the word fascist] applied to farmers, shopkeepers … fox-hunting, bull-fighting … women [and] dogs" – Barak may have just used the "F" word to defame his political opponents. 

This, too, however, can't be a conciliation since once out of the bottle, the fascist demon can't be contained. Sadly, therefore, Barak is the latest example of how people of common interest can mortally wound one another. Israelis have a vivid expression for this kind of behavior: "Shooting inside the Humvee."


Our New Range of Anointing Oils from Jerusalem

The Bible speaks about the “New Jerusalem” (Revelation 21:2) of blessing and peace.

All these Anointing Oils are handmade in Israel with the combination of biblical scents and ancient recipes, from the best quality natural oils and spices.


Oh, the Irony! Palestinian Museum Opens With No Exhibits

The Palestinian Authority last week officially opened The Palestinian Museum of Art, History and Culture just outside their de facto capital of Ramallah.

Now, as those who take historical accuracy seriously are aware, the people today known as “Palestinian” Arabs bear no distinction from the Arabs living in the nations roundabout, nations that only gained their current borders and distinct nationalities in the past century.

As such, there is no distinct “Palestinian” history or culture.

And, so, it was absolutely fitting that The Palestinian Museum of Art, History and Culture opened its doors with NO EXHIBITS.

The facility, which cost a whopping $24 million, was described as modern and luxurious by The New York Times.

The newspaper spoke to the museum’s chairman, Omar al-Qattan, who confirmed that he had opened the doors of an empty building. But, al-Qattan insisted, the move was of symbolic importance.

He and other Palestinian officials said they hope to at some point put actual exhibits in the museum.


Myths That Shape Reality

Israel tends to scratch itself until it bleeds. Not a day goes by without a brawl fueled by a ratings-thirsty media. 

As Israeli society struggles to make sense of the difficult reality it routinely faces, some public debates that touch core issues are simply inevitable. Such was the case with deputy Chief of Staff Maj.-Gen. Yair Golan who compared some fringe elements of Israeli society to 1930s Germany. His problematic comparison created a whirlwind that has yet to subside.

Many of the public debates, however, are the result of well-planned campaigns designed to advance a certain political agenda. 

A case in point is the comeback of the play "Fleischer," now being performed at Israel's national theater, Habima. Yigal Even-Or wrote Fleischer in the mid-1980s, shortly after the publication of Benjamin Tamuz's dystopian Jeremiah's Inn, a futuristic fiction describing Israel under a despotic Orthodox regime. 

In Fleisher, the same theme of the strenuous relationship between secular and religious Jews is picked up. In the play, the demographic change takes place in a run-down Tel Aviv neighborhood that has been swamped by new Orthodox arrivals. 

Though the play dwells primarily on prejudice and bigotry, when asked why Fleischer was chosen for the new lineup at Habima, art director Ilan Ronnen said that "it is important to revive this play given the background of Israeli society becoming more Orthodox."

Quite coincidentally, Channel 10 TV is currently airing Avishai Ben Chaim's documentary on the breakdown of the Orthodox community, in which he dispels the myth of a future Orthodox majority. If anything, today the Orthodox community is shrinking.

One would expect that the art director of Israel's national theater should have known a little bit more about demographics and social trends. Instead he is busy propagating a myth that does nothing but irritate. 

What's more disheartening is that most likely Ronnen formed his understanding of Fleischer on hand-picked snippets. One such snippet from the play demonstrates the harsh dialogue between secular heroine Bertha and Hond, the Orthodox realtor. Exposing her tattooed hand right in front of his eyes, she says to him: "Do you have such a certificate? This one is given only by Hitler, and believe me, Mr. rabbi, he knows who is a Jew and who isn't. He had never made a mistake."

Just as Ronnen and Habima see the play as serving a political agenda, so too do his opponents, who most likely neither saw the play nor read the script. 

When Fleischer was first performced in the early 1990s, some Members of Knesset were enraged by what they saw as verging on anti-Semitism. What we see here, said religious MK Avner Shaki, who didn't see the play, is "labeling a huge number of people. We are talking about the degradation of Judaism…"

Yet, if anything, this play is about unfounded secular prejudice toward the religious. 

Though the hero, Fleischer, who owns a non-Kosher meat shop, is critical of the Orthodox community, what Ronnen and so many others who base their opinion on well-chosen YouTube snippets fail to see is that the secular characters are behaving worse than those they criticize. Most notable is retired teacher Rosa, who says: "Had I not been born a Jew I would have been the greatest anti-Semite. I hate Jews."

Fleischer himself, who has to pay a ridiculous amount of money to get a Kosher certificate, is contemplating under-the-counter selling of Hungarian horse meat sausage and bacon – blatant non-Kosher delicacies.

Had this play not been exploited for political ends, it could have been a helpful tool to teach Israelis about the way in which myth-based fears are shaping social realities. Instead, what we are left with is a play destined to fruitlessly pit one Israeli against the other.


High Political Drama Leads to Major Netanyahu Gov Shakeup

The past few days have seen a tremendous amount of political drama in Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been ruling for the past year with a narrow 61-seat majority coalition, and has been anxious to further bolster that number and avoid early elections.

Netanyahu made serious overtures recently to opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Labor), who was himself anxious to enter the coalition and flex his political muscles.

But internal party politics scuttled the possibility of a unity coalition, leading Netanyahu with take his government further to the Right, which resulted a mini-revolt within his own Likud party.

For a full analysis of the winners and losers from this current round of political drama in Israel, be sure to read this article over at Times of Israel.


Messianic Jews and Their History

Israel’s Messianic congregations today hold official government status, and have been allowed to develop freely.

The full article appears in the May 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to read it all


Israel's Iron Dome at Sea

The Israeli navy has successfully mounted and tested its vaunted Iron Dome anti-missile system on warships patrolling the country’s Mediterranean coast.

Yesterday, the navy released a video of the tests, which took place in February.

Officials say that being able to make use of the Iron Dome at sea will enable Israel to more effectively protect its strategic natural gas reserves.


Palestinian State Would Be Oppressive Police State

A Palestinian university student has provided further evidence that an independent Palestinian state would be an oppressive police state. In fact, it already is.

Earlier this week, Emad Halayqa, a student at Beirzeit University in Ramallah, posted to Facebook that he would far rather be arrested by Israel than by the Palestinian Authority.

“The last time [PA] intelligence arrested me, one of their investigators told me: ‘I warn you not to tell anyone that we have beaten you,’” according to Halayqa.

Stories of widespread human rights violations in the Palestinian-controlled territories have been leaking out through social media for years. But few in the mainstream media pay them any attention.

The West is too invested in its grand scheme of a “two-state solution” to acknowledge that the Palestinian regime it created is anything but a peaceful and democratic entity.

“The democracy you talked about before the elections has been exposed in its ugliest character after the elections,” continued Halayqa, telling his own Palestinian government: “I am not your servant and I will not be. Send me the Jews. I wish they would arrest me and save me from your violations.”


IDF Reservists Call ‘Breaking the Silence’ Activities Tantrums...

The organization "Reservists in the Front" was born and have been setting the record straight regarding the IDF and their humane handling of civilians especially during times of military conflict.

Instead of merely proving that most of the material presented by leftwing NGOs contains outright lies or taken out of context, Reservists in the Front has developed its own action plan to deal with moral issues which present themselves during IDF activities, as well as bringing specific events to the attention of the IDF top brass.

Major (Ret) Amit Deri, one of the founding members of "Reservists in the Front", has begun to document "Breaking the Silence" activities in the Hebron, area proving that the group engages in spreading lies.

According to reserve officer Shachar Debi, even when leftwing groups report events truthfully, they do it in a way that places doubts on what the IDF is about, rather than keeping them in proportion to everything the IDF is doing right while dealing with its never-ending mission of protecting civilians against countless enemy attacks.

“The kind of conflict we are engaged in exists the world over, and the IDF's behavior can set an example for others — it shouldn’t be dragged to the negative place these leftwing organizations take them", said Debi.

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The Changing Face of Christianity in the Middle East

"Israeli Knesset members are asking for access to our contacts," says a Messianic leader involved with "Muslim Background Believers."

The full article appears in the May 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to read it all


Does God See the Jews As Enemies?

To those of us who love Israel, that question sounds preposterous. Yet many Christians suffer from what I call a Replacement Theology hangover. They finally made room in their eschatology for a restoration of Israel, but they do not accept the present return of the Jews to their ancient homeland as part of that restoration.  They point out that most Jews in Israel and abroad are still unbelievers in Jesus and therefore must be considered God’s enemies. They’ll quote Paul’s words, “that from the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies” (Rom. 11:27). If they’re enemies of the gospel, they argue, then they are enemies of God.

Sadly, these Christians have taken Paul’s words in Romans 11 completely out of context. After warning all the non-Jewish believers grafted into Israel’s tree  “to not be arrogant towards the branches [that had been cut off],” Paul instructed us concerning the Jews in their present state of unbelief. “From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, BUT from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the Fathers, for the gifts and calling of God are irrevocable” (vs. 28, 29).

From an earthly standpoint we should expect them to oppose the promotion of the gospel, tooth and nail.  And that for our benefit! God had deliberately made them enemies of the gospel to drive it out into the nations where we could hear it and get saved. 

But then Paul urges us to look past their angry opposition and view them from God’s perspective. He says, “that from the standpoint of God’s choice” they are still beloved. In other words, don’t think God has rejected them and put them in the same category as every other unbeliever in the world. No, they are still His people – even in their unbelief! The promises to the fathers had not been nullified.  

Over and over He assured Israel that “You only have I chosen among all the families of the earth” (Amos 3:2). So even though a majority rejected Yeshua, their unbelief did not cancel out His eternal commitment to them.  “Though some did not believe, their unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it? May it never be!” (Rom. 3:3,4). God had put them in a state of suspended, militant unbelief until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in [to Israel].”  Then He’ll provide the same mercy and grace to the Jews He gave to us. “For God has shut up all in disobedience so that He may show mercy to all” (v. 32)

What these undiscerning Christians don’t realize is that a paradigm shift has taken place in God’s dealing with the Jews. Everything changed with the founding of Israel in 1948. We know this because God always deals with Israel in the same way. 

Whenever the nation’s disobedience finally exhausts God’s patient warnings He allows them to be conquered and thrown out of the land. It happened when Assyria invaded the northern kingdom in 722 BC, when Babylon conquered Judah in 586 BC, and when Rome exiled them again in 70 AD. But those times of exile had an expiration date. We know Judah’s time of punishment, which culminated with the Holocaust, has ended – because they’re back in the land. Their miraculous return, impossible victories against overwhelming odds and rejuvenation of the land, all confirm God is with them, and again fighting for Israel! 

So, yes, the Jews have come home in unbelief. But that’s exactly what had been prophesied. “For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land. THEN I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean” (NAS Ezek 36:24,25). And again, in Ezekiel’s famous dry-bones prophecy, it is after the nation is restored from extinction that the prophet is commanded, “say to the breath…Come from the four winds and breathe on these slain, that they may come to life” (Ezek 37:9).

I believe that Breath will soon come. And it will be accompanied by those believers who have awakened to the Hebraic roots of their faith. For if you noticed in my recounting of Israel’s three exiles, there is still one scattering that has not been resolved. Namely, the worldwide banishment of the northern ten tribes of Israel. I have no doubt that all believers who have joined themselves to Messiah from among the nations are their lost descendants. If so, then the next thing on God’s restoration calendar would be to make it possible for us to make _aliyah. _Along with many more Western Jews.

“In those days, ten men from among the nations will grasp the garment of a Jew, saying, ‘Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you” (Zech 8:23).

Brian Hennessy is author of Valley of the Steeples


VIDEO: Israeli Divers Find Massive Roman Treasure

The Israel Antiquities Authority has put on display the contents of an ancient Roman cargo ship that sank off the coast of the Israeli coastal town of Caesarea some 1,600 years ago.

The treasure was discovered by two Israeli divers, and includes bronze sculptures, thousands of coins and other well-preserved pieces.

Israeli officials are calling it the largest and most important find in the past 30 years.


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Israeli Pride, or Is It?

Israel's entrant in last week's Eurovision 2016 song contest, the openly homosexual Hovi Star (Chovav Skoltch), and our local TV host for the event, drag queen Talula Bonet (Tal Kallai), made many Israelis proud. 

In whichever way one justifies the phenomenon of LGBTQ (lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgenders and queers), there can be little doubt that the biblical law Israel is supposed to uphold explicitly forbids same-gender sexual activity (Leviticus 18: 22, 20:13). Lest I be misunderstood, the same law treats adultery just as severely, if not more so, being one of the Ten Commandments. 

Yet Israelis seem to be proud of violating the first, and careless regarding the second. Though certainly much less severe, today many Israelis are also tattooing themselves from head-to-toe, thus showing disregard for another law forbidding this practice (Leviticus 19:28).

These are just a few of the more glaring examples of the disdain shown for Israel's religion, a phenomenon that is acutely relevant because of the direct bearing it has on the anti-Semitic tidal wave emanating primarily from the Western liberal camp.

With few exceptions, Israelis are attempting to justify Israel's existence on its being the only liberal democracy in the Middle East. Again and again, one can hear Israeli officials emphasizing the values of our Western democracy, while downplaying our identity as Jews. By so doing they rest the existence of the Jewish state on security and the secular values of a particular ideology. 

This kind of argument overlooks Israel's inherent value. And it is one reason why so many liberals can say that Jews might as well exist in one form or another in a different place entirely.

In his helpful attempt to understand the hate so many left-wingers harbor for Israel, David Bernstein concludes that for liberals the Jewish state "is nothing but reactionary nationalism based on at best foolish sentimentality, and at worst racist notions of Jewish superiority." 

Correct as this conclusion is, and as much as Bernstein wants to affirm Jewish ethnicity, he, too, will not dare invoke any spiritual significance for the Jewish state, thus again leaving Israel's existence problematically unexplained.

But there are those, like Minister of Education Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home), who understands well that “our path and sacred values have accompanied us for generations, and compromising them would likely lead Israel into the abyss." For those who think like Bennett, as much as democracy is valuable, and to an extent irreplaceable, it can't be guarded at the cost of Judaism.

Speaking at the Israel Prize ceremony that takes place annually on Independence Day, Bennett reminded us all of the spiritual value of Israel, without which it can't exist. “The goal of Judaism’s history is to heal a wounded world," which is why the next generation of Zionism should invert the present form of Zionism, meaning that "instead of searching for universal solutions for the problems of the Jews, we’ll find Jewish solutions for the problems of humanity."  

This, for those who might have missed it, is a modern expression of Isaiah's vision, in which the prophet sees Israel as a place from which "the law will go forth."

As difficult as it may be for Israelis to understand, taking pride in tolerance for different expressions of gender and certain sexual behaviors does anything but legitimize Israel's existence.

The same can be said about justifying Israel's existence on security grounds. If anything, today it is the existence of Israel that poses the greatest threat to Jewish life. 

In terms of Israel's prophetic call, it must stand upon both its Jewish and democratic legs, or it will fall. It would be fair to say that a growing number of Israelis are beginning to realize that giving up on a meaningful Jewish identity is no longer a viable option.


King of Togo in Israel, Wants to be Recognized as Jewish

King Ayi of the West African nation of Togo arrived in Israel on Sunday with an unusual request - he wants the Jewish state to officially recognize his people as a lost tribe of Israel.

The king, who has become well known among the Orthodox Jewish community, met with Religious Affairs Minister David Azulai, who told the African ruler that Israel’s Chief Rabbinate will have to investigate his claims to being descended from Israel.

“My desire is to come to the Western Wall with my people next Sukkot and shout ‘Shema Israel,’” the king told his Israeli hosts.

In an interview with the Orthodox Israeli news portal Kikar Hashabbat, King Ayi explained that “a nation that doesn’t recognize God and has no religion is a nation that doesn’t know where it is going. …I can tell you that as a professor of religion, there is no religion as close to my heart as Judaism.”

Asked how he discovered his own Jewish heritage, King Ayi said that “our teachers in Togo taught us that we are Jews. Before Togo became a republic, it was a kingdom known as ‘the Jewish Kingdom of West Africa.’ Our founding fathers came from Israel over 2,000 years ago.”

The king noted that his people have long kept Jewish biblical customs, such as various kosher dietary laws, circumcision on the eighth day after birth, and observing the Sabbath.

He went on to state that all the kings and queens of Africa must come “and see what the God of Israel has done.”

Responding to skepticism concerning the Jewish roots of Togo, King Ayi said that any who doubt need to “go read the Torah, where it is written that the lost tribes are beyond the River Sambation [the legendary ‘Sabbath River’ beyond which the 10 Tribes were supposedly exiled]. In the Last Days, all Jews in the world will be discovered, and people from afar will return…”


BDS Spreads Anti-Semitism Across U.S. Campuses

Originally written for the Investigative Project on Terrorism

Anti-Semitic incidents seem to spring up each week on college campuses throughout the United States. According to a study, “The strongest predictor of anti-Jewish hostility on campus” is the presence of a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel. The greater the BDS activity, especially involving faculty members, the more likely anti-Semitic episodes become, said the study issued last month by the AMCHA Initiative, a non-profit organization dedicated to investigating, documenting, and combating anti-Semitism on U.S. campuses.

One recent example occurred on April 15, when the City University of New York Doctoral Students’ Council passed a resolution calling for an academic boycott of Israel, 42-19. Weeks earlier, a CUNY professor and BDS advocate claimed that the killing of Palestinians in Gaza “reflects Jewish values.” On CUNY campuses, the New York Observer reports, Jewish students were harassed, with “Jews out of CUNY” uttered in at least one instance, and a professor who wears a yarmulke was called a “Zionist pig.”

On April 21, two-thirds of a union representing about 2,000 graduate students at New York University voted to approve a motion to support a BDS resolution against Israel. The motion also urges the union and its affiliate, the United Auto Workers, to divest from Israeli companies. The resolution asks NYU to close its program at Tel Aviv University, claiming the program violates NYU’s non-discrimination policy.

About a month earlier, NYU’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), one of the main organizing forces behind the nationwide BDS campaign, hosted Israeli academic Ilan Pappé, described by Benny Morris as “one of the world’s sloppiest historians.”

As reported by AMCHA:

“Pappé blamed Jews, perceived historically as evil, for antisemitism stating, ‘The [Jewish] Israelis...are responsible for bringing antisemitism back.’ He denied Jews self-determination and demonized Israel stating, ‘evil Zionism will come to an end – all immoral regimes do’ as well as suggested rich Jews should leave Israel as a process of ‘decolonization.’ He further demonized Israel throughout accusing Israel of carrying out ‘ethnic cleansing’ multiple times. Pappé delegitimized Israel consistently referring to Israel as a ‘settler colonialist project,’ ...[and] promoted BDS.”

The Jewish Law Students Association at Harvard University and Harvard Hillel co-sponsored an event April 14 on “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict & the U.S.” During the question and answer session, Husam el-Qoulaq, an HLS student and head of SJP at the school, insulted  Israeli Knesset Member Tzipi Livni by asking, “How is it that you are so smelly?... A question about the odor of Ms. Tzipi Livni, she’s very smelly, and I was just wondering.” The student’s question resurrected the anti-Semitic stereotype of a “smelly/dirty Jew.” Incredibly, some “progressive” HLS Jewish students later defended el-Qoulaq.

As BDS campaigns spread on campuses, anti-Semitic expression increasingly follows – from swastika-filled vandalism at UC Davis and Purdue University to student “debates” at Stanford University that implicitly dignify classical anti-Semitic tropes about Jews controlling the media and economy. Among other recent incidents: 

  • April 20: At Michigan’s Grand Valley State University, there have been six anti-Semitic incidents reported on campus since last December. These involved swastikas on walls or doors of residence halls, messages including “I am a Nazi” and “Hitler did nothing wrong,” a faculty member making anti-Semitic gestures in a classroom, and a Star of David with an “X” scratched into it on the window of a bus.

  • April 19: At the University of Maryland, about two dozen protesters arrived at a Hillel and Jewish Student Union event called, “Israel Fest” and, for about an hour, chanted, “Fight the power; turn the tide; end Israeli apartheid” and held signs saying “Zionism kills.” 

  • April 15: At the University of Notre Dame, a letter published by three students in the school newspaper accused Israel of apartheid and directed readers to the Anti-Semitic site “IfAmericansKnew” and the site for a major BDS group, Jewish Voice for Peace. 

  • April 10: At Atlanta’s historically black Morehouse College, participants at the U.S. Universities Debating Championship (USUDC) were forced to justify the motion, “This House Believes That Violence By Palestinians Against Israeli Civilian Targets Is Justified.” 

According to AMCHA, 2016 already has seen 171 anti-Semitic/BDS incidents as of April 21. At this rate, 2016 will see a 36 percent increase in incidents over last year.

Faculty members have become increasingly active in BDS efforts and smears. During a talk at Vassar College in February, Rutgers professor Jasbir Puar accused Israel of harvesting Palestinian organs and conducting scientific experiments in “stunting” the growth of Palestinian bodies. Last month, 40 Columbia University professors signed a BDS petition. More recently, one pro-BDS professor even tried to link campus rape to Israel. As Rochester Institute of Technology lecturer A.J. Caschetta notes, “at a time when much of academe is jumping on the BDS bandwagon, there is little risk to academics who join the movement, whereas opposition to majority leftist positions often leads to a perilous path.”

Indeed, academics who buck this trend may be endangering their careers. At Connecticut College, one of the few professors who defended Andrew Pessin, who hasn’t been in his classroom for the past year after a hate-filled campaign miscast hiscomments about Hamas as a smear on all Palestinians, says his stance cost him a promotion. Manuel Lizarralde, associate professor in Ethnobotany, wrote in a faculty-wide email Jan. 26 that the college “acted like vigilantes and found the perfect scapegoat,” in Pessin.

Within days, Lizarralde said, he was called in by the administration for a scolding. Noting that he was recently denied promotion, Lizarralde suggested in a recent email that this was payback for his support of Pessin. Connecticut College has “a sense of racism since we are Latinos, Jews and advocate for social injustice...[and we] are being punished [for such activism].”

Responding to the negative media coverage generated by the Pessin case, Connecticut College President Katherine Bergeron published an email to the faculty March 28, in which she championed “the right of all its members to express their views freely and openly.” She failed to explain how that principle applied to Pessin, who was hounded off campus for expressing his views, only to see them twisted and turned against him. She said that the school should promote “reasoned and informed debate about the most complex issues of our time,” but Pessin’s absence leaves the school with no pro-Israel voice. When asked about the contradictions between her email and the Pessin affair, she declined to comment.

Meanwhile, outrage against Connecticut College continues to build, with a petition to investigate the Pessin affair and revoke the school’s accreditation now exceeding 1,500 signatures.

Just as the character assassination targeting the only pro-Israel voice at Connecticut College appeared as a total surprise, BDS campaigns to influence student government votes across the country pop up with minimal notice, just weeks before the vote, giving the opposition little time to organize. That strategy helped secure SJP a BDS victory at the University of Chicago undergraduate student government in March. It failed to persuade the university’s administration, though.

Who is funding BDS? Analyst Jonathan Schanzer of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies recently told members of Congress that former employees of Hamas-linked charities now work for the Illinois-based organization American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), which is “arguably the leading BDS organization in the US, a key sponsor of the anti-Israel campus network known as Students for Justice in Palestine.” Schanzer noted that AMP provides money, speakers, training and even “apartheid walls” to SJP campus activists. More surprising, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund has given anti-Israel BDS organizations hundreds of thousands of dollars, according to the Shurat Hadin Israel Law Center.

On campus after campus, the BDS movement has proven itself to be well organized and determined to poison the minds of impressionable students against Israel. It will take an equally concerted and sustained effort to oppose BDS in academia.

Noah Beck is the author of The Last Israelis, an apocalyptic novel about Iranian nukes and other geopolitical issues in the Middle East.


Why Israel Today?

Israel Today brings you the news directly from the Holy Land, and at a time in which we see biblical prophecies being fulfilled right before our eyes. Just one of the many reasons that many believers worldwide choose Israel Today!

  Each monthly magazine offers:

  • In-depth feature articles on the current political, military and religious issues
  • Faith-based teachings on relevant biblical themes
  • Latest developments on the Messianic scene
  • A deeper connection to the land and people of the Bible
  • A way to sow into Israel at this important time
  • Support for Israel in the battle of the media


Bill Clinton Blames Palestinians for Lack of Peace Deal

Former US President Bill Clinton, who oversaw the bulk of existing Israeli-Palestinian peace deals, has reiterated that the Palestinian leadership is to blame for the lack of a final status agreement.

“I killed myself to give the Palestinians a state,” said Clinton while campaigning for his wife, Hillary Clinton, last Friday. “I had a deal they turned down…”

It wasn’t the first time Bill Clinton had called out the Palestinian leadership for scuttling genuine peace efforts.

In his memoirs, the former president revealed that it was Yasser Arafat who prevented the high-profile Camp David talks in 2000 from resulting in an agreement. In fact, just months later the Palestinians launched the “Second Intifada.”

Clinton’s remarks on Friday came in response to a heckler who took exception with Hillary’s stated pro-Israel positions.

Most of the protestor’s comments focused on the 2014 Gaza war, at which time Hillary was serving as Secretary of State.

Bill noted that his wife had successfully worked with the Muslim Brotherhood president of Egypt to bring an end to the bloody 50-day conflict. He also defended Israel’s military actions, which sadly resulted in the deaths of many innocent Gazans.

“Hamas is really smart. When they decide to rocket Israel, they insinuate themselves in the hospitals, in the schools, in the highly populous areas,” Clinton explained. “They said they try to put the Israelis in a position of either not defending themselves or killing innocents.”


Britain's Hard Left Turn

We’ve been here before. History is repeating itself and I’m again experiencing that sense of déjà vu that prompted me (just ten days ago) to write about the anti-Semitism row within the British Labour Party in the context of Theodor Herzl’s Zionist campaign, which itself was prompted by anti-Jewish mania.

As I have contemplated the ongoing controversy, I am reminded with horror of how Hitler’s rise to power seemingly came out of nowhere. In a similar way, the Hard Left of British politics have moved from apparent obscurity to centre stage in virtually no time at all. It is almost too shocking to think about.

How on earth did this happen – and so fast? As Barry Segal of the Jerusalem News Network put it, “many observers will be shaking their heads in disbelief, wondering how the worst extremists of the far-left came to take over the UK’s leading opposition party so rapidly”.

Apparently Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn’s closest adviser, Seumus Milne, is the one pulling the strings. A former senior editor of the Guardian newspaper, Milne is said to have described the foundation of the State of Israel as a “crime” while hailing Hamas terrorism during an anti-Israel rally held during the Operation Protective Edge Gaza campaign in 2014.

Meanwhile Mr Corbyn’s close friend, ex-London Mayor Ken Livingstone, has added fuel to the fire by describing the creation of Israel in 1948 as “a great catastrophe”, according to the Daily Mail, having earlier provoked a storm of controversy over claims that Hitler had supported Zionism in the 1930s. Mr Corbyn was already in trouble with the Jewish community – until now Labour’s natural supporters – after it emerged that he regarded Hezbollah and Hamas as “friends”.

And in Sadiq Khan, we have a Muslim Mayor of London, possibly the world’s most important and prestigious capital. Zac Goldsmith, the wealthy Conservative candidate seeking to succeed the boisterous Boris Johnson in the mayoral hot seat, has been roundly castigated (even by fellow Tories) for concentrating his campaign on Khan’s alleged links with extremists. Khan’s response was to accuse Goldsmith of ‘Islamophobia’, but such concerns are surely valid in the light of radical Islam’s ambitions for global domination, not to mention the horrific attacks – in the name of Islam – on the London transport system on July 7 2005.

One of the newest figures to step onto the British political stage is Ruth Davidson, Scotland’s new Conservative leader who has been hailed a heroine for knocking Labour into third place in elections there. The openly lesbian former Sunday School teacher has been flagged up as a possible future Prime Minister.

So how has all this happened? I’ve mentioned some of the rising stars, but they are not the cause of the trouble. They are merely the symptoms of our malaise, of a Judeo-Christian civilization collapsing all around us because the foundations have been removed.

First we betrayed Israel: we did not vote for their statehood and put obstacles in the way of Jewish refugees trying to escape the Nazis when we had it in our power to save them. Then we went a step further by dispensing with the God of Israel, even to the extent of undermining traditional marriage by legislating for ungodly liaisons between people of the same sex. Now even a once highly influential evangelical Christian leader, Rev Steve Chalke, is advocating same-sex marriage ceremonies in his own (Oasis) network of churches.

Yes, we’re reaping the whirlwind.

I have just returned from a wonderfully relaxing holiday in the Yorkshire Dales, one of the loveliest parts of England. But it was so cold at the start of the week, with snow on the hills, that we were walking around with six layers of clothing. Yet within just a couple of days, the temperature had nudged 20C (68F). “Suddenly it’s summer,” was the cry!

We in Britain know only too well that winter can descend on us just as suddenly. I think it was Mrs Thatcher who described the myriad of strikes in 1979 as the Winter of Discontent. But we’ve now entered an ice-age of madness which only prayer and repentance will melt.

Charles Gardner is author of Israel the Chosen, available from Amazon, and Peace in Jerusalem, available from


VIDEO: Netanyahu Casually Strolls Through His Neighborhood

Can you imagine US President Barack Obama out for a stroll with his dog? That’s exactly what Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was doing on Friday afternoon, casually interacting with passersby in his downtown Jerusalem neighborhood.

Of course, Netanyahu and Kaiya (his dog) were surrounded by numerous soldiers and security agents, as well as staff members responsible for filming and photographing the stroll in jeans and sneakers in order to show the prime minister is just a normal person, like everyone else.

Israeli media, however, somewhat skewered Netanyahu for trying to appear spontaneous, when in fact such a well-publicized outing was clearly anything but spontaneous.


It's Not 'Palestine' That Hinders Israel-Arab Relations

We spoke to Israel's former ambassador to Egypt about the real reasons the Arabs can't or won't make genuine peace.

The full interview appears in the May 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to read it all


Feast Your Eyes: Stunning Photos of Israel to Mark 68 Years

As a gift for this year’s Independence Day (modern Israel’s 68th) the online news portal Ynet published a collection of 20 stunning aerial photographs from across the Land of Israel.

The photos were shot by award-winning photographer Israel Berdugo over the past 12 months.

Berdugo has made a name for himself around the world, but says that there is nothing like photographing the Land of Israel.

“Each trip around the world only made me realize more that the region in which we live is nothing short of amazing. There is no more beautiful country than the Land of Israel,” he told Ynet.

Click Here to see the entire collection on Ynet


The whole country is full of flags...

On Wednesday evening, an amazing transformation will take place in Israel's mood. After commemorating Israel's 23,447 fallen, the sombre mood gives way to celebration as Israel celebrates her 68th Independence Day!

One of the songs sung on Independence Day is:
The whole country is full of flags
And the whole nation is dancing
The nation and her children are happy
Today is an Israeli celebration

Rona Ramon (widow of Ilan Ramon) will light one of the twelve torches during the Yom Ha'atzmaut opening ceremony. The torches symbolize the tribes of Israel. Rona's husband, Ilan Ramon, was Israel's first astronaut who died in the Columbia space shuttle disaster in 2003. Rona and Ilan's eldest son, Asaf followed in his father's footsteps and became an IAF fighter pilot. Asaf died tragically in a training accident in 2009.
Rona went on to study holistic health, has established a foundation in memory of her husband and son and now counsels others to cope with personal tragedies.

Celebrate together with us as we offer you 20% discount off the "Solidarity" category in our shop.


Israelis Help Palestinian Boy Seek Miracle

Israel Today meets with the Israelis raising money and acquiring permits for Palestinian Arab children in need of urgent medical care.


Israel Prepares to Remember Her Fallen

Israel’s Memorial Day begins Tuesday at sundown. A nationwide siren will sound for one minute at 8 pm, during which most of the country will come to a literal standstill as we remember those who have fallen in our defense.

Since its modern rebirth, 23,447 young men and women have perished defending Israel. That number includes 68 Israeli soldiers and police killed in the line of duty over the past year.

Memorial Day also commemorates victims of terrorism. 2,576 Israelis have been killed in acts of terror, 32 of them over the past year.

The sirens will again sound Wednesday morning at 11 am, after which an estimated 1.5 million Israelis (out of a population of 8.5 million) will take part in memorial ceremonies around the country.

It is a sad fact of Israel’s present reality that nearly every citizen knows someone who has been killed in this tragic and ongoing conflict.

CLICK HERE if you would like to show some love and support to our soldiers


Palestinian Terrorists Stab Elderly Jewish Women

At least two Palestinian Arab terrorists set upon a group of elderly Israeli women walking along the Armon Hanatziv promenade in southern Jerusalem on Tuesday morning.

Two of the five women were stabbed repeatedly in the upper body before the assailants fled in the direction of the nearby Arab village of Jabel Mukaber.

Israeli rescue personnel that responded to the scene listed both victims as being over the age of 80. Both were rushed to a nearby Jerusalem hospital in moderate condition.

Police later announced that they had arrested two suspects. At press time the manhunt was ongoing for suspected additional participants in the attack.

PHOTO: Illustration


Obama Admin: Yes, We Lied to Israel About Iran

Ben Rhodes, a deputy National Security Adviser to US President Barack Obama, revealed in a New York Times interview published last week what pretty much everyone already knew - the Obama White House lied to win approval for its Iran nuclear deal.

Getting a deal on the books was more important than the consequences of doing so, it was more important than the reality of an aggressive and nuclear-armed Iran.

That’s the gist of what Rhodes told the Times.

“We can do things that challenge the conventional thinking that, you know, ‘AIPAC doesn’t like this,’ or ‘the Israeli government doesn’t like this,’ or ‘the gulf countries don’t like it,’” Rhodes said. “It’s the possibility of improved relations with adversaries. It’s nonproliferation.”

Where Obama explicitly lied to allies and Americans was in describing the nuclear deal as having been struck with a “moderate” Iranian regime that had finally displaced a far more hard-line government in Tehran.

“The idea that there was a new reality in Iran was politically useful to the Obama administration,” read the Times article.

Had Obama been honest about the fact that the foundation for his deal had already been laid with the former hard-line Iranian government, and that the new “moderate” regime wasn’t really all that moderate, a lot more people would have taken the Israeli view of the nuclear agreement.

Former US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta was also interviewed, noting that another lie was the notion that America under Obama would ever resort to military force should Iran violate the agreement and field a nuclear weapon.

Just days after these revelations, the Iranian new agency Tasnim reported that Iran recently tested a new medium-range ballistic missile capable of accurately striking any point in Israel.


Ohad's incredible journey to freedom

We first came to know Ohad Ben Yishai under not the most pleasant of circumstances. Ohad's story was not supposed to take the turn that it did, but fate dealt him a blow and decided otherwise. He was one of the most seriously injured soldiers during Operation Protective edge.

His memory was severely impacted, his speech was affected and he was confined to a wheelchair unable to walk. It was almost like starting his life from scratch. His good fortune was that he and his family did not give up hope and were determined to put all of their efforts into his battle to return to a normal life.

Today, almost 2 years after his injury, Ohad is reaping the benefits of his determination. He has not fully recovered and still has a long journey ahead, but he has progressed more than anyone could have dreamed of.

His Golani brigade's tradition is that every class that is drafted go on an overseas trip together upon their release from their compulsory service. His group were planning a trip to Nepal and Thailand together. Despite Ohad's injuries, his comrades-in-arms were determined to include him in their vacation.

This trip was not taken for granted as Ohad is still not independent as he cannot do many things on his own. His friends refused to break their tradition and would not accept travelling on vacation without him. Ohad's whole family was recruited, and together they made the impossible possible.

The highlight of the trip was when they all celebrated the Seder with his family, friends and many Israeli tourists on the island of Koh Samui. The Israeli tourists were excited when they heard that Ohad would be celebrating the Seder together with them. He was enthusiastically welcomed with a lot of love and appreciation.

There is no holiday that symbolizes freedom more than Passover, and there is no doubt Ohad’s long journey is getting closer and closer to what he seeks the most, to be independent, which means to be free.


Netanyahu Offers to School UN on Jerusalem's History

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has invited all United Nations staff members to a seminar on Jewish history, particular in Jerusalem and atop the Temple Mount.

The invitation, which appears to be genuine, came after the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) last month issued a resolution slamming Israel’s presence on the Temple Mount and totally disregarding all Jewish ties to the holy site.

“I was shocked to hear that UNESCO adopted a decision denying any Jewish connection to the Temple Mount, our holiest site,” read a statement issued by Netanyahu.

“It is hard to believe that anyone, let alone an organization tasked with preserving history, could deny this link, which spans thousands of years,” the prime minister continued.

No details were released as to when such a seminar would be held, assuming any UN staff would even show up, but Israeli officials hinted it could be as early as next week.


Canada: Israel's Peace Partners are Terrorists

Canada’s Federal Court last week upheld a decision that basically labeled Israel’s purported “peace partners” in the Palestinian Authority as terrorists.

Earlier, the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada had denied asylum to Akram Muslih Anteer, a Palestinian man living in Sweden, because of his connection to Fatah.

Fatah is the party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. It is the largest and most dominant faction in the PLO and the Palestinian Authority.

The Canadians determined that “Fatah did not entirely disassociate itself from acts of terrorism against the Israeli state even after renouncing armed struggle and…the most notorious faction within Fatah, the AAMB (Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades), did not exist separately from Fatah as a whole.”

Unlike most Western power brokers, the Canadian government paid attention to the evidence demonstrating that “Fatah engaged in acts of violence and terrorism both before the denunciation of terrorism in 1989 and, through the AAMB, during the Second Intifada from 2000 to at least 2007.”

Many Israeli leaders, both left- and right-wing, have long maintained that they have no genuine partner for peace in the Palestinian Authority. It would seem the Canadians agree.


VIDEO: How Can You Help Israel?

Our favorite Messianic Jewish IDF soldier, Hananya Naftali, has put out another video, this time explaining to viewers how they can help Israel without even leaving their homes.

From prayer to buying Israeli-made products, there is a lot you can do.


Does Islam Support a Jewish State?

Israel Today speaks to representatives of two Muslim movements that fully support the reborn State of Israel.

The full article appears in the May 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to read it all


"I can't complain!" answered Laura Rusk - AKA 79564

Laura Rusk - AKA 79564 - witnessed hundreds of people at a time being herded to the "shower building" in Birkenau.

It was not long before it was her turn. As she was escorted to her impending doom, "inmate 79564" was called out over the loudspeakers. Being a political prisoner she had earned a temporary reprieve.

She was interrogated regarding her escape from Peterswaldau. The SS officers seemed impressed at her daring and courage. And then the fateful question was asked of the, by now, 22-year-old blonde blue-eyed young lady. "How do you like Auschwitz?" she was asked.

She immediately knew that life and death hung in the balance of her answer. "I can't complain!" she answered.

The full article will appear in the June 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to subscribe and read it all!


VIDEO: Palestinian Children's Play Featuring Murder

It is one of the great tragedies of the Middle East conflict that young Palestinian children are still raised to see Israeli Jews as bloodthirsty monsters that must be killed at all costs.

In fact, one of the more important stipulations of the so-called “Oslo Accords” (though Western power brokers all but ignore it) was that both sides educate their populations for peaceful coexistence, to ensure that future generations do NOT carry on in conflict.

Such demonstrations of violence as seen below are nowhere to be found in the Israeli schools attended by my children. In fact, the younger children have only a very fleeting realization that there is a conflict at all.

They are not taught to hate Arabs. In fact, some of their teachers are Arabs. They are certainly not taught to engage in violence. And even when these schools participate in campaigns to support the Israeli security forces, no mention, negative or otherwise, is made of the enemy against whom those soldiers and police are protecting us.

By-and-large, the Israeli education system is making a real effort (and a successful one in most cases) to prepare the next generations for peaceful coexistence with their Arab neighbors. Or, at the very least, to NOT prepare them for a future of hatred and violence.

As demonstrated by the following video, the same sadly cannot be said of most schools in the Palestinian education system.

Indoctrinating young impressionable minds in such a way is nothing short of child abuse.


Israeli Man Sues God for Treating Him Unfairly

A resident of the northern Israel port city of Haifa this week turned to the courts to seek a restraining order against God.

The man said that he had turned repeatedly to the police over the past three years, and on several occasions police were sent to his home to examine the complaint.

According to the suit, God has been treating the man unkindly.

The court protocols made note of the fact that the defendant, God, failed to appear at the proceedings.

In his decision, Judge Ihsan Kanaan called the request delusional, and said that the plaintiff clearly needs help, but not from the courts.


Wars and Rumors of Wars

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. (Matthew 24:6)

Rumors regarding the imminent coming of Messiah are bountiful today. The latest among them is that of the Riminov Rebbe (pictured), a Hassidic rabbi living in New York. 

Visiting his followers in Florida, the rabbi urged them to leave the United States as soon as possible. According to the Orthodox website Behadrei Haredim, on the seventh day of Passover the rabbi pressed his listeners to leave the Diaspora to Israel.

"Listen to me carefully dear Jews," said the rabbi, "whoever has in his hand to get up and go and go to the Holy Land Israel as soon as possible while it is still is possible, this includes leaving large parts of South America and most of Europe … also the United States will be a place of danger in the war and it is still too early to say which states within the United States will survive, but many parts will be destroyed and poisoned, even civil war will break out in the United States and states will cut themselves off from the federal government … the Land of Israel will be the safest place to survive the war, although there will also be terrible difficulties there."

To add credibility to this prediction the rabbi reminded his listeners that "I am one of the few men in our time who can say this since it has been published all over the world that my eyes see very far away, like [the] three boys in Halhul and dozens more who were missing, where others do not have permission to see … and this was planted in me by God and Divine Providence and when I had to talk to many and give instructions, I do it and the Divine Presence speaks from my throat, and wherever my name goes out to, it is known that those who listen to me shall be safe."

Interestingly enough, exactly a year ago a similar End Times prediction was made by the 106-year-old mystic, Rabbi Sasson Tabashi.

 On last year's Passover, Rabbi Tabashi said that "it was revealed to me from Heaven that a week after Shavuot (May 29, 2015), a giant war will break out in the Middle East, and it will be a difficult situation until Sukkot (September 2015), and afterwards, Messiah will come."

There is more than one way in which to relate to such "prophecies." If the prophecy of Jesus given in Matthew 24 is to be taken seriously, then the current abundance of such predictions may be a sign of the End Times.      


From Holocaust to Resurrection

Six million brothers
- by Yair Engel of blessed memory.

They look down on us from above,
Six million brothers.
They look down on us from above crying or laughing,
and we're down here, not understanding at all
sitting on another planet, crying and embarrassed.
How can a person get up in the morning
A seemingly normal person
And cut down the living plucking away dreams
Erasing yesterday's world
How can a simple man created from the earth
Bring desolation and ruin to the world,
That I will never understand.
And to think that everything was done so quickly
And systematically, it just drives me crazy.
And here's another group of people
So good, so innocent dying inhumanely
Their world erased between four walls.
And now it's late, people,
Very late only memories remain,
Only memories remain.
And even if we try and think a very long time,
We will never understand how they allowed themselves
To turn six million people into six million names.
That I will never understand.
And to think that everything was done so quickly
And systematically, it just drives me crazy.
And despite it all we need to continue
Living and be strong because
They look down on us from above, crying or laughing,
And his sons are so confident, his sons are so confident -
Six million brothers.
That I will never understand.
And to think that everything was done so quickly
And systematically, it just drives me crazy.

Yair Engel's grandfather was an Holocaust survivor. An high school visit to Poland's death camps touched and completely changed Yair's life. There, on Poland's bloody earth, he composed this poem. There he chose to serve as a IDF Navy Seal.

Yair passed away in 1996 in a tragic diving accident. After his death his mother found the above poem while cleaning his room.

Tomorrow, on May 5, 2016 - Holocaust Remembrance Day - this poem, written 20 years ago, will be performed in Poland during the "March of the Living".

Yair's father says that two circles will be closed for him, that of Yair and that of his father, an Holocaust survivor.


Trump to Israel: Keep Building Settlements

US Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump said in an interview with the UK’s Daily Mail on Tuesday that Israel should continue building settlements in Judea and Samaria.

Trump told the newspaper that if elected president, he’d love to negotiate a genuine peace, “not a peace that lasts for two weeks and they start launching missiles again,” between Israel and the Palestinians.

In the meantime, regarding Jewish settlements in the territories claimed by the Palestinians, Trump said Israel should “keep moving forward.”

Trump took the opportunity to again lambast President Barack Obama’s treatment of the Jewish state.

“Look, missiles were launched into Israel, and Israel, I think, never was properly treated by our country. I mean, do you know what that is, how devastating that is?” asked the real estate mogul.

Trump went on to note that while he doesn’t know Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that well, “I think I’d have a very good relationship with him” as the next American president.


3 IDF Soldiers Hurt in Terrorist Car Ramming

Three Israeli soldiers were wounded, one seriously, when a Palestinian Arab man slammed his vehicle into them at a checkpoint in Samaria on Tuesday evening.

Other soldiers stationed at the checkpoint immediately opened fire and killed the assailant.

Along with the wave of stabbings, this current campaign of violence has included numerous acts of vehicular terror.


"You shall tell your son on that day..." The truth about Israel!

The vast majority of the Israeli public sees a regional peace between Israelis and Arabs, Jews and Muslims as a “mission impossible.”

People abroad blame Israel for the lack of peace, and the growing BDS movement seeks to punish the Jewish state through Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions.

But whoever has a problem with items “Made in Israel” should know that the Bible was also "Made in Israel"!


Do Arab Knesset Members Want to Destroy Israel?

Are the Arab members of Israel’s Knesset, led by their firebrand spokesman MK Ahmed Tibi, really interested in a two-state solution, or do they share Hamas’ dream of wiping the State of Israel off the map?

That was the question posed by Israel’s NRG news portal in its reporting ahead of Tibi’s appearance before the Palestinian American Coalition (PAC) on Sunday.

Usually, NRG noted, Tibi is screaming about the ’67 borders, but according to the advertisement (pictured) for this week’s event, the entire State of Israel is reimagined as “Palestine.”

Tibi’s talk was titled “A Palestinian in the Knesset: Perspectives on identity, equality and advocacy for Palestine”.

Likud parliamentarian Dr. Anat Berko harshly criticized Tibi’s inflammatory speech and the promotional material.

“MK Ahmed Tibi has long fooled the Israeli public by adopting a ‘chummy’ demeanor,” said Berko, “[but] to the Palestinian public both here and abroad he is selling something different entirely.”

Berko continued by explaining that the “map of ‘Greater Palestine’ displayed alongside [Tibi’s] smiling face on the US invitation is but one example of this.”

Tibi’s office responded: “With all due respect, we do not determine what will be on their invitation, how they design their symbol or color their homeland, and there is a difference between a homeland and state.”

The statement went on to demand that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his ministers announce what borders, if any, they intend to give to a Palestinian state.

Tibi also insisted that he remains committed to the ’67 borders.


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Palestinians Furious After Eurovision Bans Their Flag

Call it not just a BDS failure, but a total reversal.

The official broadcasters of the upcoming Eurovision song contest have banned the audience from waving Palestinian flags, along with the flags of ISIS, Kosovo and the Basque movement.

Eurovision is wildly popular across the continent, as well as in Israel, which regularly sends a competing band or singer.

As part of the televised festivities, those in the audience wave the national flags of their favorite competitors.

Some like to use the opportunity to make a political statement by waving flags that have nothing to do with the competition.

Not this year.

The broadcaster has issued an “official flag policy” banning certain flags, including that of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which is also the official flag of “Palestine.”

It should be remembered that the PLO was once the foremost terrorist organization in the world, similar to what Al-Qaeda is today.

Long-time Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, who recently took over as secretary-general of the PLO, was outraged.

In a scathing letter to the European Broadcasting Union, Erekat called the Eurovision flag policy “discriminatory and a serious offense against our nation.”

Erekat noted that some 138 nations, including most of Europe, have officially recognized a Palestinian state. “We call upon you to immediately revoke this shameful decision,” he continued, demanding that the Europeans issue an apology to “millions of Palestinians around the world.”


British Labour Party Rocked by Nazi Row

I was struck with a mysterious sense of déjà vu when, having spent much of the afternoon researching the life and times of Theodor Herzl, inspiration for the Jewish nation, I heard on the news that a red-hot political row had broken out over anti-Semitism.

I had just been witnessing movie scenes of the shocking racist incidents that probably drove Herzl into an early grave as he vowed to do something about it.

Yet now, some 120 years after his campaign to establish a Jewish national home got off the ground, anti-Semitism is still rife in Europe’s corridors of power.

The Labour Party, Britain’s official opposition which has traditionally had the support of most Jews, is reeling from the shockwaves of anti-Jewish feeling expressed by some of its leading figures.

First we heard of the resignation of an Oxford University Labour group leader sickened by anti-Semitism in its ranks, then we learnt of a young Labour councillor forced to resign after it emerged she had tweeted that Hitler was “the greatest man in history”.

And now former London Mayor Ken Livingstone takes to the airwaves to defend a Labour MP suspended on similar grounds.

After claiming Hitler was a Zionist who, in 1932, believed Jews should be moved to Israel, Mr Livingstone invoked a tirade of invective not only from opponents, but from many within his own party including a Nottinghamshire MP, John Mann, who confronted him in the street and called him a “disgusting, lying racist” and “Nazi apologist”.

Around 30 Labour MPs, including several Shadow Cabinet members, demanded Mr Livingstone be expelled from the party (he has been suspended) and there was outrage over the decision by Labour leader MP Jeremy Corbyn to issue a public telling off to Mr Mann. Party chief whip Rosie Winterton (my own MP, as it happens) is said to have refused to suspend Mr Mann.

Labour peer Lord Dubs – who escaped the Nazis as a child through Britain’s Kindertransport scheme – is “enormously troubled” by the row. “What we need is firm leadership; the leadership has been a bit slow in responding (to anti-Semitism),” he told a British TV news programme.

And Jewish Labour donor David Abrahams, who has given £650,000 to the party, called for Mr Corbyn to resign, saying a new leader was needed to cut out the ‘cancer’ of anti-Semitism.

As for Mr Livingstone’s claim, historian Andrew Roberts says it’s a “grotesque mangling of the historical record”, adding: “The idea that Hitler ever wanted a fully-functioning successful Jewish state in Palestine…is ludicrous.”

Mr Corbyn, for his part, who has referred to terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah as “friends”, denies the party is in crisis.

The chilling aspect of all this is that it is not something taking place in a dark corner. It’s in the public square, at the very centre of British politics. And I have a hunch what lies behind it.

The root cause, I believe, is the growing godlessness in the nation, and especially in the Labour Party. What a travesty for a political movement launched by devout Christians like Keir Hardie determined to let their faith make a difference to society by campaigning for a fairer share of wealth, for example. But what motivates them now?

People who are godless hit out at those who are special to God. That’s what happened in Hitler’s case; it led to mass murder and mayhem, but ended in disaster and defeat for the dictator and his people.

Steven Jaffe, a member of the UK’s Jewish Board of Deputies, made this point earlier in the year when he said that the Holocaust had been spawned by godlessness and the rejection of faith.

He said the exodus from Egypt was immediately followed by the battle with Amalek, who had no reason to attack Israel. There was no territorial dispute or history of conflict, for example. And they attacked the sick and the elderly – those who were most vulnerable. (Deuteronomy 25.17-18)

“The conflict with Amalek is not over,” he said. Amalek denied God and his power in the same way the Nazis did, and the latter mirrored their lack of mercy.

The poisonous view that God does not exist naturally leads to godless behaviour and thought. Pledges of never letting another Holocaust occur are not enough, in my opinion; without a recovery of faith in the God of Israel, there can be no guarantee that it won’t happen again.

The only safe place to be – in the long term – is in God’s hands, doing his work. I challenge the Labour Party to return to its Judeo-Christian roots.

Charles Gardner is author of Israel the Chosen, available from Amazon, and Peace in Jerusalem, available from


The Fundamental Flaw in the Two-State Solution

The Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has adopted a document concerning "occupied Palestine." It was drafted by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan. 

UNESCO's anti-Israel bias is so severe that Jerusalem does not grant visas to representatives of this organization. This latest document is further evidence of why, as it "deeply regrets," "deeply deplores" and "strongly condemns" the "Occupying Power" exercising sovereignty over the Temple Mount and the Old City of Jerusalem.

To justify such a misnomer as Israel's "occupation" of the Temple Mount, UNESCO has adopted the Muslim narrative that systematically erases any piece of evidence proving the Jewish bond to the Temple Mount and to the Land of Israel as a whole. 

In fact, throughout the document, the "Temple Mount" is not mentioned once. As if the Jewish name for this holy place were mere fiction, the document refers to it only as "Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif." Even the Western Wall has been made a victim of UNESCO's revisionism and called only by its Muslim name, "Al-Buraq Plaza."

Concealing the fact that the Jewish Temple existed for hundreds of years in Jerusalem goes far beyond the demand to create a Palestinian state in the "occupied territories." Indeed, it goes without saying that if the holiest Jewish site is under "occupation," then Israel is nothing but a colonial power, and not only in Jerusalem, but in the whole of the Holy Land. 

If the Temple Mount is not a Jewish site, how could one say that Jews have the right to live in places like Tel Aviv, which only loosely, if at all, have Jewish religious significance? It follows that if Israel occupies the Temple Mount, it also occupies Tel Aviv. 

The recent apology by British Labor MP Naz Shah, who in 2014 suggested that Israeli Jews be transferred to America, is but the latest example of how this line of reasoning brings millions to the conclusion that Israel is at best a non-sustainable Western colony. 

Therefore, the two-state solution can only be a half-house, a temporary solution leading to the final one in which Israel ceases to exist.

The danger in validating the Muslim/Palestinian narrative has been clear ever since Israel gained control over the Temple Mount in 1967. 

One of Israel's most respected poets and columnists, Nathan Alterman, in 1970 harshly criticized Labor Party members for beginning to sympathize with the idea of a "Palestinian people." Alterman astutely observed:

"By adopting this factitious notion we are turning the beehive over our right to exist in this land… At the moment we accept the national Palestinian fiction, from that moment Zionism as a whole becomes a matter of robbing a country from the hands of an existing people, and to the extent that we help root this idea in the world and in our own innerconsciousness, we are shaking the historical and human foundation of Zionism, thus placing it only on our bayonets.

"…If indeed we acknowledge the existence of a Palestinian Arab nation, then not only the 'occupied territories' are Arab territories upon which we shed our blood until the inevitable withdrawal, but also the state of Israel is an Arab territory… If there is an Arab nation who is fighting for its country, then our protests lose their meaning. International law and morality deem terror illegal as long as we say it is a tool in the hands of the Arab countries against us. But from the moment it becomes the weapon of the Palestinian people … who are fighting for their national existence, none of the pejoratives in which we describe their bloody actions would help us."

Israel rightly condemns UNESCO's attempt to erase the Jewish (biblical) history of the Temple mount. This protest, however, rings hollow when, in the name of realpolitik, Israel itself severely restricts the Jewish presence on the Mount and openly commits itself to the two-state solution. 

Israel's readiness to hand over the Temple Mount to the Palestinians is seen by the world as evidence of a state that places no value in its own historical heritage, and therefore has little right to exist.

It is time for Israelis to realize that by demoting the Temple Mount to a piece of real estate, they are bolstering UNESCO's efforts to prove that Israel is a colonial power that has no right to exist in the Promised Land.


Treat our soldiers to a "time out"...

Our soldiers almost never enjoy a "time out", not even during holiday times.

A "time out" is something that our soldiers very seldom enjoy because they are on call 24/7 even during those times when they do enjoy a breather from their operational duties. Our soldiers receive an extremely small allowance, which barely covers their basic personal needs, and are totally dependent on their parents. Every bit of support they receive, is very appreciated!

Israel traditionally celebrates Independence day by barbecuing. The forests, parks & even private gardens are all lierally converted into BBQ dens. Israel's citizens can freely celebrate, primarily due to our security personnel that sacrifice their time to ensure our freedom.

In honor of Israel's upcoming Independence Day celebrations, we would like to distribute free burger vouchers to soldiers so they can partake and enjoy a little respite from their day-to-day activities


Christian Priest to Light Independence Day Torch

More and more Christians see Israel as a home worth defending. Messianic Jews respond.

The full article appears in the May 2016 issue of Israel Today Magazine.
CLICK HERE to read it all


Survey: Palestinians Oppose Real Peace, Support Terror

A survey published this week revealed that most young Palestinians are only interested in the kind of solution to the current conflict that can be brought about by terrorist violence.

Conducted by the Palestinian NGO Jerusalem Media and Communications Center, the survey was conducted among Palestinians aged 16–30 in both Gaza and the so-called “West Bank.”

An overall majority of respondents said they support the current wave of terrorist stabbings and other attacks against Israeli Jews, and a similar majority felt the violence was beneficial to the Palestinian national cause.

Most interesting were the responses to questions regarding the peace process.

While a slim 53 percent majority supported a possible resumption of negotiations, 67 percent insisted that peace talks alone would not produce an acceptable outcome.

In fact, 64 percent of Palestinians indicated they have no interest in working with like-minded Israelis to find a non-violent solution.

In other words, peace negotiations must be combined with terrorism.


Israelis Happy That Obama's Almost Gone

Everyone knows that the current Israeli and American governments don’t get along very well. And the Obama Administration’s hostility toward Jerusalem only seems to be increasing in its waning days.

The Obama White House has experienced “overwhelming frustration” in its dealings with the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said US Vice President Joe Biden last week.

Speaking at a gathering of the left-wing Jewish organization J-Street, Biden accused Netanyahu of “moving us and more importantly…moving Israel in the wrong direction.”

In survey results published this week, Israelis signaled that the feeling was mutual concerning President Barack Obama and his handling of American affairs.

Conducted on behalf of Israel’s Channel One News, the poll found that a solid 51 percent of Israelis believe that no matter who wins the upcoming US presidential election, the end result will be a positive change for the Jewish state.

Only 8 percent felt there was a chance US-Israel relations could get worse than they are under Obama.

A 39 percent plurality remain certain Democratic contender Hillary Clinton will win the White House, while 30 percent said real estate mogul Donald Trump will be the next American president.

More Israelis feel Clinton will be overall better for their nation, though a plurality acknowledges that Netanyahu will get along better on a personal level with Trump.


WATCH: Thousands Pack Western Wall for Priestly Blessing

Tens of thousands of Jewish people from Israel and around the world gathered at the Western Wall of Jerusalem’s Temple Mount on Monday for the biblical Priestly Blessing.

The Priestly Blessing is performed at Passover, Shavuot (Pentecost) and Sukkot - the three biblical festivals during which the people of Israel were required to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.

The event is led by hundreds of Cohanim, those Jews who can trace their lineage to the family of Aaron, Moses’ brother and Israel’s first high priest.

The following words are recited by the priestly Israelis over the congregation:

“May the LORD bless you and keep you; May the LORD make His face shine upon you and be gracious unto you; May the LORD lift up His face unto you and give you peace.”

They are the same words that Numbers 6:23–27 tells us Aaron and his sons recited over the assembly of Israel during their sojourn through the desert.

As always, security was tight, with thousands of police deployed in and around Jerusalem’s Old City to prevent terrorist attacks against the mass gathering.


The May issue of Israel Today Magazine is now available!

The May issue of Israel Today Magazine is now available!
Exclusively for subscribers to Israel Today Magazine:
Christian Priest to light Independence Day Torch
Does Islam Support a Jewish State?
Israelis Help Palestinian Boy Seek Miracle
The Israeli Army that No One Sees
Is Israel planning the demise of the Golden Dome?

Israel Today has reached 2 milestones. This issue is the 200th issue of Israel Today Magazine and this is the 38th year since the founding of the company!

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