This is quite an interesting find. Google Maps has recently made it availabe (looks to appear as of Nov. 2016) to view a detailed model of the Third Temple. Could this be what we will be seeing soon and why are they putting this up before the temple has even been built?
Deputy Chief of Staff Yair Golan, speaking at a conference today (Monday) shared some projections of what a future conflict in Lebanon would bring to the home front in Israel’s heartland.
“In the 2nd Lebanon war, 70 tons of explosive warheads hit Israel. Let’s estimate the next war will bring four times that and round up. So we’re talking about 300 tons per month. That’s equal to what our Air Force drops in five hours.”
However, Golan argued, the challenge was not insurmountable. “Don’t you think we can withstand this? Do we not have a national sense of fortitude?”. He also offered statistics that brighten the picture somewhat, “Of all the rockets fired up till now, only 4% have hit in built up areas, and only 1% have hit buildings directly.”
Golan was speaking at a conference organized by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), marking the 10-year anniversary of the 2nd Lebanon war. NEMA was created in the wake of the aforementioned war to better coordinate military and civilian action during states of war or national disaster. Attendees at the conference include Amir Peretz, who was Defense Minister during the 2nd Lebanon war, the head of NEMA, the head of the Home Front Command, and other Defence and Emergency Response officials.
According to Golan, “We’re the country best equipped to deal with this kind of emergency. I look at the Tel Aviv Metropolitan Area. How many rockets will land there? Several dozens. We can handle that. The Home Front Command has prepared directives for all relevant government bodies, and we just need to make sure that everyone is doing their job and ensuring preparedness. Israel has a peerless early warning system that lets civilians know exactly what to do.”
Regarding preparations for dealing with the threat from Hezbollah, Golan said some populations may need to be evacuated from areas adjacent to the border, but made sure to note that he is “opposed in principal to evacuations, despite the fact that some small scale evacuations may be necessary.”
Golan summarized, “The IDF knows that the best defense is offense, the removal of the threat. We need to make sure to strengthen the home front, but make sure to remember that wars are won by accomplishing offensive objectives. We’ve had worse times in our history. Our situation is anything but catastrophic, no one has stopped fighting, and we need to keep our heads. The last war in Lebanon saw the deaths of 42 civilians and I certainly don’t dismiss this. It’s been difficult, and things will get more difficult, but there is no doubt we have the ability to handle the situation.”
Amir Peretz, who served as Defense Minister during the war, also spoke at the conference and warned of the inadequacy of the rocket and bomb shelter infrastructure in the North, saying “It’s not good, to put it mildly, and we can’t put it on the inhabitants of the North to solve it themselves.”
Regarding the lead-up to the war, Peretz said: “Our policy of containment created a perception on the Hezbollah side that we were frozen, and they took full advantage.”
Responding to recurring accusations that the IDF wasn’t operationally or logistically prepared for the war, Peretz demurred, saying: “I was Defense Minister for two months when the war started. I could have shifted responsibility for the results on to others, but I didn’t.”
Expressing pride in the war’s accomplishments, Peretz remarked that Israel had enjoyed “10 years of quiet on the northern front. Children don’t know what a Katyusha is and farmers can work in peace. I commend all who were a part of that military campaign and accomplished such wonderful things.”
Reflecting the conduct of the war itself, Peretz highlighted the constraints of the pre-Iron-Dome era. “I had to pay attention to what was going on in our offensive operations at Bint Jbeil and elsewhere and to the Home Front situation in Haifa, all at the same time. The Iron Dome isn’t only an effective military tool, it also gives command the ability to make decisions more calmly. Without it there are far more questions; to evacuate of not to evacuate? I am not a big fan of evacuations but sometimes it may be absolutely necessary as an executive decision and then that opens up the entire matter of where to put all the people who’ve left their homes.”
Peretz also addressed today’s agreement with Turkey, expressing the belief that “this agreement is important. I sympathize with the families of the MIAs, and if it was promised to them that any agreement would include the return of the bodies–that’s a grave issue.”
Yona Yahav, the Mayor of Haifa, spoke at the conference about public bomb shelters, calling them “death traps,” and lamenting the fact that “12 out of the 14 dead in Haifa were hit on their way from their houses to the shelter. The state must fund the building of more reinforced rooms in private apartments.”
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/214157#.V3E-uLsrLx8
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu rejected a multilateral French “peace initiative” as he met his French counterpart on Monday, offering instead to hold direct talks with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas in Paris.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said he would speak to President Francois Hollande about Netanyahu’s proposal.
Direct negotiations with the Palestinian Authority are “the only way to proceed to peace,” Netanyahu said. He offered “a different French initiative” of face-to-face talks with Abbas in Paris.
Despite Netanyahu’s rejection of the French initiative, the Israeli premier began by thanking Valls for his “commitment to Franco-Israeli relations” and “stalwart position against anti-Semitism and that of Francois Hollande.”
Netanyahu also thanked Valls for his recent statement acknowledging that France’s support for a UNESCO vote which denied the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount was a mistake.
“I have to be honest: I wrote a letter to Francois Hollande and expressed my shock that France had voted for a decision denying the Jewish people’s link to the Temple Mount, which spans thousands of years,” Netanyahu related. “And the reason that this vote was so troubling for us is that it implies that the Jewish people have no right to be here. And I think that remains the core of the conflict, the refusal to recognize the right of the Jewish people to have a nation-state in their ancestral homeland.
“I hope you encourage other nations that voted for this outrageous resolution to follow your lead and admit it was an error. And of course, the most important thing is that it doesn’t happen again.”
Moving on to the French peace initiative, Netanyahu stated: “though we have some disagreements on the best way to achieve peace, I deeply appreciate your commitment to pursue it.
“I know how much you care about ending the terrible violence that has plagued our region for far too long, and I want to thank you and President Hollande for your commitment to peace.”
“We share the same goals: peace, two states for two peoples, an end to war,” he added, but emphasized his position that the only way to end the conflict is via direct talks, without preconditions.
“This weekend you said that direct talks are very difficult right now,” he told Valls, citing comments in which the French PM explained the rationale behind engineering a “peace summit” to which neither Israelis nor Palestinians were invited. “And you’re right. They are, but they’re the only way to proceed towards peace.”
“Peace just does not get achieved through international conferences, UN-style,” said Netanyahu. “It doesn’t get to fruition through international diktats or committees from countries around the world who are sitting and seeking to decide our fate and our security when they have no direct stake in it.
“Peace is achieved through direct negotiations between the parties and in direct negotiations, the Palestinian leadership must face a stark choice and this choice is simple: recognize the Jewish state or continue educating your people that one day Israel will be gone.”
The PA, he said, seeks to “create a Palestinian state not to live side-by-side next to Israel, but to eliminate Israel.”
“The Palestinian leadership doesn’t see the French initiative as an inducement to compromise, but rather as a way to avoid it,” Netanyahu insisted. “In fact, the Palestinian Prime Minister, Hamdallah, let slip the other day his hope for an imposed timetable, rather than a negotiated peace.
Noting how Israel made peace via direct negotiations with Arab neighbors Jordan and Egypt, Netanyahu reiterated his willingness “to make difficult decisions,” if PA leader Mahmoud Abbas would simply agree to direct talks.
“That’s why I would gladly accept a different French initiative, and here’s the one important change. This initiative can still take place in Paris, because that would be a marvelous place to sign a peace accord,” Netanyahu offered.
“It’s a marvelous place anyway. It can still be called the French initiative, because you would host this genuine effort for peace, but here’s the difference: I will sit alone directly with President Abbas in the Élysée Palace, or anywhere else that you choose. Every difficult issue will be on the table: mutual recognition, incitement, borders, refugees and yes, settlements – everything.
“There is no issue too complex to solve if both sides are willing to talk to each other. And I am more than willing; I am eager. I was injured in battle; I lost a brother; I lost many friends in battle. Israel wants nothing more than peace. And I hope you encourage President Abbas to accept this French initiative: direct negotiations without preconditions, between the Israeli prime minister, the Palestinian president in Paris.”
“I’m ready to clear my schedule and fly to Paris tomorrow,” he added, before quipping: “well, I think tomorrow we’re expanding the government, but the day after tomorrow.”
Valls is visiting Israel and the Palestinian Authority to advance his country’s plan to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.
The “peace conference,” scheduled for June 3, has been panned by Israel but welcomed by the PA. It would essentially involve world powers – without Israeli or PA representatives in attendance – deciding on a solution to the conflict, and would be followed by a second conference in the autumn to which Israelis and Palestinians would be invited.
France says the goal is to eventually restart negotiations that would lead to a Palestinian state.
Netanyahu in particular has criticized the initiative and called for direct negotiations between the two sides.
Negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians have been at a standstill since a US-led initiative collapsed in April 2014.
Netanyahu has repeatedly offered to meet Abbas for direct talks, but the PA leader has declined to respond, instead taking unilateral actin via the United Nations and other international bodies, in violation of previous agreements with Israel.
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/212679#.V0MboPkrLx8
“It doesn’t get to fruition through international diktats or committees … seeking to decide our fate and our security when they have no direct stake in it.” Netanyahu said.
Paris plans to hold ministerial-level talks on June 3 as a first step in reviving Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, which came to a grinding halt in April 2014.
The talks would initially exclude Israel and Palestinian authorities but would bring together representatives of the US, Russia, the United Nations and European Union, as well as representatives from Arab and European nations.
The French hope that beginning with non-direct talks could lay the groundwork for an agreement later between Israel and the Palestinians.
The Palestinians have welcomed the French effort, but Israel has rejected it out of concern the country will be faced with foreign dictates.
Instead, the Israeli leader proposed sitting down for direct talks in Paris with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
“I will sit alone directly with President Abbas in the Elysee Palace, or anywhere else that you choose,” Netanyahu said.
Speaking to broadcaster i24news, Valls said direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians had failed.
“The role of world powers is to ensure a regulated dialogue,” Valls said in Tel Aviv.
The French premier is expected to meet Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah in Ramallah on Tuesday.
Earlier this year, France’s former foreign minister Laurent Fabius said France would recognise a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem if the conference and efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian talks fail.
The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) threatened to “drown” any US warships approaching Iran, a top general said Tuesday, according to state-controlled media.
“We have informed Americans that their presence in the Persian Gulf is an absolute evil,” Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi stated to state media. “Americans are aware that Iran would destroy their warships if they take a wrong measure in the region.”
He further threatened that the US would “lose control of everything” by drawing others into Middle-East affairs.
“There has never been normal conditions in the Persian Gulf and Americans can feel the presence of IRGC navy forces at any spot,” he added. “Iran’s great power has forced US to consider creation of deterrent capabilities.”
Fadavi also boasted that the West remains unaware of Iran’s alleged naval capabilities, including surface-to-air missiles.
The threats surface just days after top White House adviser Ben Rhodes revealed the US deliberately misled the American public about the 2015 Iran deal.
While the public was led to believe talks began after the election of “moderate” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, talks with Islamists in the country began far earlier, he said.
In November of 2013, it was revealed that a preliminary deal between Iran and the West was made possible due to secret talks that the United States and Iran held for more than half a year and were authorized by US President Barack Obama himself. Those discussions were kept hidden even from America’s closest friends, including its five negotiating partners and from Israel.
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/212122#.VzNRR4QrLx8
A senior Iranian military official on Wednesday made an outlandish accusation, claiming that Islamist rebel groups in Syria are “subgroups” of Israel – while failing to mention the fact that those same groups oppose Israel’s very existence.
“Had it not been for Israel’s intelligence backup for the terrorists, the terrorist groups in Syria would have surely been destroyed around two to three years ago,” said General Hassan Rastegarpanah, Security Adviser of the Iranian Armed Forces’ General Staff, reports Fars News Agency.
Making the claim of Israeli terror support ironic is the fact that Iran is the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.
Regarding “backup,” it is in fact Iran that has been intervening in Syria where it and its Lebanese terror proxy Hezbollah have been propping up Bashar al-Assad’s regime, not only by providing support but through active engagement in the fighting. Likewise Russia has been propping up Assad with an airstrike campaign.
But according to Rastegarpanah it is Israel that is meddling in Syrian affairs, despite the Jewish state’s open position of not taking sides and non-involvement aside from humanitarian aid and limited strikes to prevent the transfer of game-changing weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Going beyond accusing Israel of support, the Iranian general claimed that it is now common knowledge that the opposition forces clashing with Assad “are subgroups of Israel’s intelligence bodies,” in an apparent claim that the Syrian opposition is actually Israeli.
“The Zionists set up field hospitals for the terrorists and supply them with ammunition,” claimed the general, saying that the opposition forces “easily commute” between Syria and Israel.
There has been no indication of, nor any logical reasoning for, Israel arming the Islamist rebel groups that are as hostile to the Jewish state as they are to Assad. However, Israel has provided medical services to Syrians wounded in the conflict, even including Islamist rebels.
In February the Syrian opposition requested that Israel set up field hospitals as part of a plan for protected areas where Israel could treat the wounded in Syria, rather than airlifting them to the Jewish state.
On the other side, Iran’s allies Assad and Russia have been conducting ceaseless airstrikes including on internationally supported hospitals, thereby largely necessitating Israel’s humanitarian involvement in Syria.
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/211827#.VyuO3oQrLx8
In honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, leading pro-Israeli Christian groups are heading to the UN to condemn UNESCO’s effort to deny the Jewish nature of the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism.
Laurie Cardoza-Moore, Special UN Envoy for the World Council of Independent Christian Churches (WCICC) and President of Proclaiming Justice to The Nations (PJTN), is to take part in UN meetings where she will condemn UNESCO’s shocking resolution last month, which recognized the Mount only as Al-Aqsa Mosque.
WCICC represents over 40 million Evangelical Christians worldwide, and together with the more than 13,000 global PJTN Watchmen, they are calling on UNESCO to condemn the Jordanian Waqf’s strategic and deliberate destruction of ancient Jewish artifacts on the Temple Mount for the past decade in a blatant attempt to erase Jewish history.
“This message is particularly important on Holocaust Remembrance Day, because we cannot afford to standby as Jewish history is publicly denied by an organization of the United Nations,” warned Cardoza-Moore.
“Denying the Jewish people’s connection to the Temple Mount is tantamount to denying the existence of the Jewish people and is therefore even more grave than Holocaust denial.”
The PJTN president also warned that by denying the connection between the Jewish people and the Temple Mount, UNESCO is undermining its own stated mission which is “to contribute to the building of peace,” as its denial increases violence and violates the human rights of Jews and Christians who support the Jewish connection to Jerusalem and all Israel.
UNESCO’s denial of Jewish heritage also breaches its obligations to promote religious tolerance, she added.
“Christians recognize the historic Jewish connection to Jerusalem, the Temple Mount and all of the ancient biblical sites in Israel. Christians also recognize that if we do not defend Israel’s biblical and historic connection to the Land, Christians will ultimately lose their historic connection as well,” said Cardoza-Moore.
“We are calling on all Christians to contact UNESCO and condemn this attempt to re-write biblical history and replace it with political propaganda.”
She warned that “with the rise of global, genocidal anti-Semitism, as well as the global push to boycott, divest and sanction Israel, on this Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial Day – ed.), as the world remembers one of the most horrific events in modern history, Christians, Jews and people of conscience must commit to make a stand and say never again.”
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/211832#.VyuM3YQrLx8
A letter from 83 of the 100 total senators demanding US President Barack Obama to hurry and settle a new defense aid package to Israel, encouraging him to raise it from $3 billion a year, will not make a difference in practice, a senior American official opined Wednesday.
If anything, additional support for Israel is a given, he told Army Radio– due to heavy bilateral support for Israel in Congress.
Israel has been asking for an increase of the annual defense budget to $4-$4.5 billion when the current agreement expires in 2018, and while the letter did not specify how much the US should give, it called for a significant increase.
In the letter, the senators also said they want to increase US funding for cooperative missile defense programs with Israel, such as Iron Dome and David’s Sling.
Republican presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) was one of the 51 Republicans supporting the move, while Democratic candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was not one of 30 Democrats who signed.
Official Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/211499#.VyDfRfkrLx8
The UN Security Council has rejected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that the annexed Golan Heights in Syria would “for ever” remain under Israeli control.
The 15-member council agreed on Tuesday that the status of the Golan, which Israel seized from Syria in 1967, “remains unchanged”, Chinese Ambassador Liu Jieyi, who holds this month’s council presidency said.
Liu recalled a 1981 resolution which states that Israel’s “decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights was null and void and without any international legal effect.”
Liu said that the Council members “expressed deep concern” over Netanyahu’s remarks from earlier this month that “the Golan Heights will remain in the hands of Israel for ever.”
Israel’s UN Ambassador Danny Danon issued a statement rejecting the council complaint.
“Holding a meeting on this topic completely ignores the reality in the Middle East,” he said. “While thousands of people are being massacred in Syria, and millions of citizens have become refugees, the Security Council has chosen to focus on Israel, the only true democracy in the Middle East.
“It’s unfortunate that interested parties are attempting to use the council for unfair criticism of Israel.”
Netanyahu’s April 17 declaration came on the occasion of the first Israeli cabinet session on the Golan since the area was seized from Syria in a 1967 war and annexed in 1981.
Israel’s annexation of the Golan has never been recognised by the international community.
Past US-backed Israeli-Syrian peace efforts were predicated on a return of the Golan, where some 23,000 Israelis now live alongside roughly the same number of Druse Arabs loyal to Damascus. Liu said the council supported a negotiated arrangement to settle the issue of the Golan.