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Breaking News: Terrorist Attack Near Hebron Kills 1, Injures 2

Hebron Checkpoint (Photo: wikicommons/Friends123)

Hebron Checkpoint (Photo: wikicommons/Friends123)

An Israeli family was shot by Palestinian terrorists at a checkpoint near Hebron today, The Jerusalem Post reports. The family was attacked while in their vehicle:

A 40-year-old man, presumably the father, was pronounced dead, while the mother was in serious condition, and the child suffered only light injuries, reported Channel 2.

IDF security forces, police, and Border Police were carrying out a search for the shooters. According to various media reports, shots were initially fired at an army post before they were fired at civilians.

Our prayers go out to this family, as well as for the protection of those searching for the killers, for any other innocent people in the area, and for peace and safety in the entire region.

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Monday, April 14th, 2014 at 11:21 AM  | Stand For Israel

Standing Firm – To Blame Israel

(Photo: U.S. Dept. of Defense)

(Photo: U.S. Dept. of Defense)

Elliott Abrams, writing at the Council on Foreign Relations, dissects an open letter to Secretary of State John Kerry from a handful of American foreign policy elites including former Carter National Security Advisor (and frequent critic of Israel) Zbigniew Brzezinski, former Congressman Lee Hamilton, and others. The letter, predictably, gets a lot of the facts and recommendations wrong:

There is no “enlargement” of Israeli settlements. There is population growth, especially in the major blocs that Israeli will obviously keep in any final agreement. But enlargement, which logically means physical expansion, is not the problem and is rare in the West Bank settlements. The authors don’t seem to know this.

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Monday, April 14th, 2014 at 8:42 AM  | Stand For Israel

Do Unilateralists Own Israel’s Future?

(Photo: Wikinews)

(Photo: Wikinews)

Tom Wilson, writing at Commentary, wonders if the future of the Israeli-Palestinian process depends on further negotiations, on continuing cycles of calm and violence, or on unilateral moves made by each side:

There are two obvious problems with almost all of the unilateral proposals. One is security, the other is international opinion. Those plans that call for a near complete withdrawal from the West Bank risk recreating Gaza on a massive scale and on the strategically important high ground overlooking Israel’s population centers and vital infrastructure.

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Friday, April 11th, 2014 at 8:12 AM  | Stand For Israel

Abbas Bets on Kerry’s Desperation

(Photo: U.S. State Dept.)

(Photo: U.S. State Dept.)

Seth Mandel, writing at Commentary, notes that the not-dead-yet negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians refuse to die because P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas, who walked away from the table and unilaterally applied to membership in a dozen or so U.N. agencies, still thinks he can extract some concessions from Israel via U.S. pressure:

What’s the argument in favor of a round of concessions as preconditions in addition to releasing the terrorists? Abbas is playing Kerry. He assumes that Kerry is sufficiently desperate for negotiations that he’ll lean on Netanyahu to give Abbas whatever he wants.

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Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 at 8:44 AM  | Stand For Israel

Palestinian Blackmail

(Photo: wikicommons/ Uriber)

(Photo: wikicommons/ Uriber)

Professor Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University, writes that Israel should stop giving unilateral concessions to the Palestinians for the purpose of enticing them to the negotiating table and, in fact, the international community should stop pushing the negotiated peace paradigm:

At the same time, Israel should seriously consider the wisdom of continuing to go along with the preferences of the international community to implement the two-state paradigm when evidence mounts that this paradigm is not working. The attempt to impose a statist rationale on the Palestinian national movement by hoping that a proto-statist structure such as the P.A. would behave like Jordan or Egypt has failed.

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Monday, April 7th, 2014 at 8:57 AM  | Stand For Israel

Putting It All On Israel

(Photo: Flickr/ RonAlmog)

(Photo: Flickr/ RonAlmog)

In his piece in the weekend issue of Haaretz, Amos Harel, arguably the top military and defense journalist in Israel, engages in one of those common journalistic lines of reasoning that are repeated so often they come to seem like received wisdom but, upon further inspection, are nonsense. The article, which is behind the Haaretz pay wall, has this as the lead:

“If Israel remains stubborn and refuses to resume talks it will embark on a course that could result in a renewal of terrorism in Israeli cities.”

Did you catch that? It seems quite reasonable, doesn’t it. We’ve written before on these pages that the failure of the peace talks could likely lead to renewed terrorism. So, what’s the big deal?

The problem is that Harel’s construction of the argument has Israeli stubbornness as the genesis of Palestinian terror. Leave aside, for the moment, that we don’t agree with Harel that continuing to build in your capital city and insisting that your enemies promise a real peace agreement can be called “stubbornness.” But how, for people who are reasonable and rational and who believe in things like constructive negotiation, can Harel dismissively excuse Palestinian terrorism? Because, when you say that a new campaign of suicide terror is the totally natural result of the failure of peace talks, we have to ask, “in what way is suicide terror ever natural?”

Harel, who really is a good journalist, concedes in his piece that the Palestinians made ridiculous and unreasonable demands, that they aren’t negotiating in good faith, and that they likely can’t deliver on an agreement even if they ever could muster the courage to forge one. Still, the new wave of terror he foresees will be due to Israeli stubbornness. In this view of the conflict, there are two glaringly incorrect beliefs. They are shared by many on the Israeli left, in Europe, at the U.N. and other international institutions, and among international aid and human rights organizations.

The first is that the Palestinians are mere children, who simply cannot be expected to react to circumstances with…

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Monday, April 7th, 2014 at 8:43 AM  | Stand For Israel

John Kerry, Thwarted by the Middle East

(Photo: U.S. State Dept.)

(Photo: U.S. State Dept.)

Jeffrey Goldberg has a habit of laying blame as evenly as possible in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which usually means blaming Israel a bit too much. In this piece, he forgives John Kerry for an ill-advised, poorly executed push for a peace deal while concluding that both sides are currently too stubborn for peace:

Abbas is under the illusion that membership in various international conventions means he rules a country. But the moral support of Bolivia and Thailand and Norway and Malawi will not bring about the creation of a state. Only Israel can conjure a Palestinian state into existence.

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Friday, April 4th, 2014 at 8:24 AM  | Stand For Israel

IDF Soldier Killed When Vehicle Flips Over

(Photo: IDF)

(Photo: IDF)

An IDF corporal was killed today when his vehicle crashed near in Galilee near the Lebanese border, Arutz Sheva reports:

An IDF soldier was killed, and another soldier wounded lightly, as the military vehicle they were driving in crashed and flipped over on Thursday.

The soldier’s name has been released by the IDF: Corporal Sheetrit Elhai z”l, a 19-year-old from Ashkelon …

The IDF noted in a statement that the tragic crash occurred in the western Galilee, near Kibbutz Malkiya, which is located right on the border with Lebanon …

Israel has been on high alert on the Lebanese border, after an explosive was set on the border and detonated as an IDF patrol passed nearby in mid-March. While none were injured, three soldiers were checked for shock from the blast. Terror suspects days later were chased away from the border.

Please pray for the loved ones of this young man, as well as for the protection of the brave men and women who selflessly protect the Holy Land.

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Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 at 2:11 PM  | Stand For Israel

Breaking News: Israel Cancels Fourth Prisoner Release

(Photo: wikicommons / Itzik Edri \ איציק אדרי)

(Photo: wikicommons / Itzik Edri \ איציק אדרי)

Israel has canceled the release of a fourth and final group of Palestinian prisoners. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ application for membership in 15 United Nations organizations constituted a unilateral move, leading to Israel’s cancellation of the release:

Chief negotiator for Israel, Tzipi Livni, said that Israel could not release prisoners under current conditions and called for Palestinians to retract unilateral move.

The announcement by Israel came after Abbas on Wednesday applied for membership in 15 international organizations.

Under the terms of the agreement last July that enabled the current round of negotiations – which is set to expire on April 29 – Israel was to release 104 Palestinian security prisoners in four phases, and the Palestinians were to refrain from unilateral moves in the international arena.

We pray for the continued hope of peace, and for wisdom and courage on the part of Israel’s leaders.

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Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 at 11:52 AM  | Stand For Israel

IDF Soldiers with Autism Producing Stellar Results

(Photo: IDF blog)

(Photo: IDF blog)

To support Autism Awareness Month we bring you a story of how the IDF is being greatly helped by a group of soldiers with autism. Recently, the IDF’s Intelligence Unit 9900 has been staffed by soldiers who bring unique skills and strengths to Israel’s military operations. Gidon Ben-zvi tells how these talented young men and women have overcome adversity to make the Holy Land a safer place:

The Israeli Satellite Intelligence Unit provides essential information used by the military to execute highly complicated operations. This data is gathered using satellites orbiting Earth, high above the combat arena. In addition to satellites, Unit 9900 uses manned and unmanned aircraft, and advanced sensors.

The autistic young men and women who serve in Unit 9900 can sit for hours  in front of electronic maps spotting the minutest changes, Channel 10 said. This is a rare ability that eludes most non-autistic soldiers.

We salute these soldiers for giving their all, as well as the IDF for realizing how best to utilize their abilities.

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Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 at 9:08 AM  | Stand For Israel
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State of Israel"

Rabbi's Commentary
God Is Present This Holy Season

Even as efforts for peace seem to be at an impasse all around the world, the Passover story can give us hope and affirmation that God is always present in our lives, and even when situations seem impossible, He is working in ways we cannot imagine.


Read Rabbi Eckstein's message »

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