JNN Newsletter - November 27, 2017

“Deliver me, O Lord, from evil men; preserve me from violent men, who plan evil things in their hearts.  They continually gather together for war.” Ps.140:1-2

EGYPT MOURNS 305 VICTIMS OF SINAI MOSQUE MASSACRE: Egypt on Saturday 25 Nov. 2017 mourned 305 worshipers killed in a gun and bomb assault on a mosque in the Sinai Peninsula. Special prayers took place nationwide a day after gunmen detonated a bomb and mowed down worshipers fleeing the Rawda mosque in North Sinai, where security forces are battling ISIS jihadists. The death toll rose from 235 to 305 overnight Friday-Saturday. Among them were 27 children.The state prosecutor’s office confirmed also that over 100 were wounded in the assault. President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi declared three days of mourning and vowed to “respond with brutal force” to the terror attack, among the deadliest in the world since the 11 Sept. 2001 attacks on the United States.

Hours later Egyptian air force jets destroyed vehicles used in the attack and “terrorist” locations where weapons and ammunition were stocked, an army spokesman reported. Witnesses said the terrorists blocked routes to the site using vehicles which they set alight. Between 10 and 20 armed attackers were involved, Magdy Rizk, who was among the wounded, told reporters. “They were wearing masks and military uniforms,” adding that people living in the area had previously received threats from extremist groups. (Times of Israel) Pray for those who have lost loved ones in this heartless attack and for ISIS and related terror groups in the Sinai to be located and defeated.

TEL AVIV CITY HALL LIGHTS UP IN SOLIDARITY WITH EGYPT: The facade of the Tel Aviv-Yafo municipality building wore red, white, black and golden hues on Friday night 24 Nov. 2017 as it was lit up in solidarity with Egypt, which suffered a mass casualty terror attack hours earlier. The municipality building, situated in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square, donned the colors of the Egyptian flag in an expression of Israeli support for its southern neighbor, as Egypt continues to reel from the attack that claimed the lives of at least 305 worshipers at a mosque in the northern Sinai after Friday prayers. The mayor of Tel Aviv, Ron Huldai, expressed his condolences to Israel's southern neighbors in Egypt. "A horrific attack in Egypt. We send our condolences to our friends across the border and light the Municipality building in their honor," said Huldai. (J.Post)

ISRAEL THWARTS ATTEMPT TO SMUGGLE TONS OF EXPLOSIVE MATERIAL INTO GAZA: An attempt to smuggle tons of explosive material into the Gaza Strip was thwarted last week by the Israeli Ministry of Defense's Crossing Authority. The attempt was foiled thanks to a new, advanced chemistry laboratory that was set up in recent weeks at Israel's Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza. The new laboratory is a joint project of the Ministry of Defense's Crossing Authority, Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and Israel Police. Advanced technology permits experts to precisely identify gases, liquids, powders, metals and other substances before they enter the Gaza Strip. The primary focus is to prevent substances which could benefit terror groups in the enclave. Crossing Authority head Brig.-Gen. (res.) Kamil Abu Rukun praised the greatly enhanced abilities granted to the crossing's security apparatus by the addition of the laboratory. “It greatly widens the security forces' toolkit in the daily, relentless battle against smuggling into the Gaza Strip," said Abu Rukun. (J.Post) Continue to intercede that every means on the part of terrorist groups to prepare for - or carry out - attacks against Israel will be disclosed and prevented.

HAMAS MEMBER NABBED ENTERING ISRAEL SPILLS INFO. ON GAZA TUNNELS: A member of Hamas’ military wing, captured after he entered Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip, has provided Israeli investigators with a wealth of information about the terror group’s tunneling operations, the IDF said on 23 Nov. 2017. Ahmad Avid was a member of the Hamas military wing, which he joined in 2013. He trained in the use of anti-tank weapons, military engineering operations, and sniping. He was also involved in tunnel digging and was a member of the Hamas border patrol forces. During his interrogation, Avid gave up a considerable amount of information about the Hamas tunneling operation in the Gaza Strip, including attack tunnels leading into Israel and tunnels inside Gaza intended for use in battles against the IDF. “The investigation of Ahmad Avid once again revealed Hamas’s terror activities, using tunnels to advance terrorist activity against Israel,” the army said. He was indicted on 23 October 2017 at the Beersheba District Court on “serious” security-related charges. On 30 Oct. 2017, Israel blew up an attack tunnel leading into Israeli territory that was being dug by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad together with Hamas. In total, 14 terrorists were killed including two senior commanders. The IDF said it had not intended to kill terrorists when it destroyed the tunnel. (Times of Israel)

GIRL INJURED IN 2011 BOMBING PASSES AWAY: Hodaya Nechama Asulin who was critically wounded seven years ago in a terrorist attack at a bus stop near Jerusalem’s Binyanei Ha'uma, passed away last week. In 2011, a Muslim named Hussein Ali Hassan al-Qawasmi left a bomb at a bus stop near Binyanei Ha'uma adjacent to the kiosk. A tourist was killed and 68 civilians were wounded, including Asulin, who was 14. The murderer was sentenced to life imprisonment and another 60 years in prison. Since then, Asulin has been unconscious and treated under close supervision. In the past two weeks, her condition worsened and she passed away last week at Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem. A spokesman for Hodaya’s home village, Mevo Horon, said that "the community mourns the premature death of Hodaya Nechama and supports the family." (INN) Please pray for believed family and friends.

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NETANYAHU HAILS ‘FRUITFUL COOPERATION’ WITH ARAB COUNTRIES: PM Netanyahu on Thurs. 23 Nov. 2017 hailed his country's "fruitful cooperation" with Arab nations, as fears over Iranian influence appear to drive one-time adversaries closer together. "Our fruitful cooperation with Arab countries is in general secret, but I am confident that relations with them will continue to mature and that this will allow us to enlarge the circle of peace," he said in a speech to mark the 44th anniversary of the death of Israel's first prime minister, David Ben Gurion. Netanyahu insisted that peace between Israel and Arab countries would "happen in the end, because there are a lot of things going on all the time beneath the surface." Israeli officials have repeatedly said that shared worries with Sunni Arab nations over the growing might of Shiite Iran could cause a diplomatic reconfiguration across the Middle East, where Egypt and Jordan are the only two Arab neighbors to have made peace with the Jewish state. Last week, chief of staff Gadi Eisenkot declared in a rare interview with an Arab outlet that Israel was prepared to cooperate with Saudi Arabia to face Iran's plans "to control the Middle East.” Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on 23 Nov. 2017 said that Iranian leader Ali Khamenei was "the new Hitler of the Middle East, who needs to be confronted. We learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work. We don’t want the new Hitler in Iran to repeat what happened in Europe in the Middle East." (INN)

IN POSSIBLE NOD TO ISRAEL, TOP SAUDI OFFICIALS VISIT PARIS SYNAGOGUE: In a historic first and possible nod to Israel, two top officials from Saudi Arabia, both former government ministers, visited a synagogue in Paris last week. The officials were Secretary General of the Muslim World League Dr. Muhammad Abdul-Kareem al-Issa, a former Saudi justice minister, and Khalid bin Mohammed Al Angari, a former Saudi education minister who currently serves as Riyadh’s ambassador to France. The pair visited the Grand Synagogue in Paris and were hosted by France’s Chief Rabbi Haim Korsia and the synagogue’s Rabbi Moshe Sebbag. Sebbag and Korsia took a Torah scroll out of the Ark during the visit and showed it to the Saudi officials, explaining to them the significance of the text and other ornaments in the sanctuary. “This was very exciting,” Sebbag said on 22 Nov. 2017. “This was their first time in a synagogue and I was frankly surprised that they came.” Their visit came amid reports of growing ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia and just a few days after IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot said Israel would be prepared to share intelligence with the kingdom on Iran. (J.Post)

KUWAITI WRITER: THE LAND OF ISRAEL WAS PROMISED TO THE JEWS BY ALLAH: Kuwaiti columnist Abdullah Al-Hadlaq told Alrai TV last week, "Like it or not, Israel is an independent and sovereign state. It exists, and it has a seat at the United Nations, and most peace-loving and democratic countries recognize it." The countries that don't recognize Israel are "the countries of tyranny and oppression." When the State of Israel was established in 1948, there was no state called 'Palestine'," he said. "There is no occupation. There is a people returning to its promised land. The Land of Israel was promised to the Jews, by Allah”, he said. (J. Post) Right - he’s got all the facts correct except for one; the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the giver of the Land of Israel to the Jewish people forever!

VICE-PRESIDENT MIKE PENCE TO VISIT ISRAEL FOR CHANUKAH: USA Vice-President Mike Pence will be addressing the Knesset during the Chanukah holiday as part of his upcoming visit to Israel. He will be arriving on 18 Dec. 2017. Pence will be the first senior White House official to address the Knesset since President George W. Bush in 2008. Pence is expected to address the Iranian issue and the persecution of Christians in the Middle East. He will also visit Egypt and the Palestinian Authority, two places who don’t have a great reputation when it comes to the treatment of Christians and other religious minorities. (Jewish Press) Pray for Vice-President Mike Pence that his journeys will be safe and his words anointed to bring about positive change and relief for the suffering Christians in the Middle East.

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

Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff