Prepared for the
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations
by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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March 29, 2019
Video: Living Next to Hamas Terrorists in Gaza (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Listen to civilians living on the Israeli side of the border, showing amazing resilience in the face of Hamas' incessant terror.
Over 2,000 Violent Incidents Originated in Gaza Last Year (Times of Israel)
More than 2,000 violent incidents emanated from Gaza in the past year, Israel said on Wednesday.
Palestinians in Gaza launched 1,233 rockets, hurled 94 explosive devices and 600 firebombs across the security fence, and committed 152 acts of arson against Israeli forces.
Rocket fire killed one Israeli and injured 126. Palestinian attacks on the security fence killed one Israeli soldier and wounded 16.
Arson kites torched thousands of acres of Israeli farmland, causing over $9.5 million in damage.
Israel Discovers 2,000-Year-Old Jewish Village in Greater Jerusalem - Amanda Borschel-Dan (Times of Israel)
New evidence of 2,000-year-old Jewish ties to the greater Jerusalem region was recently uncovered during a salvage excavation in the city's Sharafat neighborhood.
In what is today a mixed Muslim and Christian Arab neighborhood in the Jerusalem municipality, archaeologists have unearthed a large Hasmonean-era agricultural village.
Archaeologists discovered an impressive burial estate, an olive press and many jar fragments, ritual baths, a water cistern, rock quarries, and a dovecote, all dating to circa 140 BCE–37 BCE.
Nine Iranians Nabbed in Sri Lanka with 107 Kg. of Heroin (Sunday Times-Sri Lanka)
Nine Iranian nationals were arrested after a tip-off on March 24 with 107 kg. of heroin being transported in a trawler, Police Spokesman S.P. Ruwan Gunasekara said.
See also Senior Iranian Officials Arrested in Sri Lanka for Heroin Smuggling (Iran Commentary)
The Sri Lankan Police Narcotics Bureau learned of the actual owners of the heroin consignment seized on March 24 and arrested Brig.-Gen. Mohammad Massoud Zahedian, Iran's Anti-Narcotics Police Chief, and Col. Mohammad Bakhshandeh, chief of Tehran's Anti-Narcotics Police, at Colombo's airport.
According to a senior official of the Khatam al-Anbia Construction Company in Iran - known to be linked to the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) - the state police of Iran, NAJA, has been resorting to smuggling narcotics recently for money-laundering purposes.
Jordanian Parliament Votes Against Israel Gas Deal - Amiram Barkat and Dan Zaken (Globes)
The lower house of the Jordanian parliament on Thursday voted against the agreement with Israel for the supply of natural gas from the Leviathan reservoir to Jordan.
The lower house has no authority to cancel international agreements; its decisions are mainly symbolic. The body has previously passed many anti-Israel resolutions.
The Jordanian National Electric Power Company (NEPCO) is to begin receiving gas from Israel later this year.
A Disturbing Vote at Brown University - Editorial (Providence Journal)
It's odd and alarming that of all the world's states - China, with its massive human rights violations and internment of tens of thousands of Muslims; Syria, where the ruling dictator Bashar al-Assad murdered hundreds of thousands; or Vladimir Putin's Russia, which is occupying parts of Ukraine - there is one that draws particular ire.
What's odder still is that country is a stalwart U.S. ally and a beacon of freedom and democracy in an unfriendly neighborhood.
We refer to the State of Israel, the world's only Jewish-majority state.
Brown University in Providence is the latest to target Israel. Last week, the campus held a referendum on whether to support the "Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions" (BDS) movement. Students passed the measure overwhelmingly.
President Christina Paxson said, "Brown's endowment is not a political instrument to be used to express views on complex social and political issues."
Good. But the mere act of the vote seems troubling.
Israel, like any advanced democracy, is far from perfect. But it's an obscenity to suggest it in any way resembles apartheid-era South Africa.
Israel is surrounded by countries that wish its destruction, yet it carries on, remarkably successfully.
We're deeply troubled, too, at the double-standard at play. Where are the calls for divestment from other countries, which manifestly abuse human rights vastly more than Israel does?
It's telling, and not in a good way, that Israel, the world's only Jewish state, is the object of such disproportionate criticism.
It is chilling that this group of people is so frequently singled out. And it is wrong.
See also Brown University President Rejects "Polarizing Calls for Divestment" over Israel - Christina Paxson (Brown University)
Gaza Conference by Duke and University of North Carolina Sinks Academia to a New Low - Amy Rosenthal (Algemeiner)
When Duke University and the University of North Carolina (UNC) hosted a joint conference on Gaza, I expected it would be an honest academic exercise. I could not have been more wrong.
The discussion panels only included a one-sided perspective on Gaza.
There was no mention of Gazan terrorism and the "pay to slay" policy of paying salaries to terrorists (and the families of terrorists) who kill innocent Jews, Americans, and others.
There was no mention of the riots to break through Israel's border, or the terror tunnels built by Hamas.
And there was certainly no mention of the thousands of rockets launched from Gaza targeting Israeli civilians. On Sunday, all day, eight pro-Palestinian films were shown.
The writer is a former faculty member of Duke University.
Israeli Bedouin Diplomat and Chabad Rabbi Unite to Save Lives in Nepal - Itamar Eichner (Ynet News)
Israeli Vered Aviyashar, 26, was killed a year and a half ago when her jeep overturned on the Annapurna ridge of Nepal.
After the accident, a medical project was launched in her memory by Chabad emissary to Nepal Rabbi Hezki Lifshitz and Israeli Bedouin diplomat Ismail Khalidi.
The project includes the distribution of small oxygen tanks to help Israeli backpackers trekking in the Himalayas suffering from altitude sickness.
Only when Israeli trekkers "are at high altitudes do they discover that they have an oxygen problem," Khalidi explains.
Israeli Technology Gives Sierra Leone Schoolchildren Clean Water (JNS)
The St. Joseph's girls' school in Sierra Leone's capital of Freeport has received Israeli technology that produces fresh, safe, drinking water out of air.
Watergen's GEN-350 atmospheric water generator can produce up to 900 liters of water per day.
Water pollution is one of the leading causes of death in the country, which has an average life expectancy of 56 years, one of the lowest in the world.
Israeli Car Laser Sensor Company Innoviz Raises $132 Million - Yasmin Yablonko (Globes)
Israeli startup Innoviz Technologies, which is developing a radar laser for the auto industry, on Tuesday announced the completion of a $132 million financing round.
Innoviz's high-definition sensor facilitates remote 3D scanning and provides a high-definition image of a vehicle's surrounding in all weather conditions.
The final product is smaller and cheaper than comparable laser-based products, while significantly improving range and resolution.
Fitch Affirms Israel's A+ Credit Rating (Ynet News)
Credit rating agency Fitch affirmed Israel's long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating (IDR) at "A+" with a stable outlook.
"Israel's IDRs balance strong external finances, robust macroeconomic performance and solid institutional strength against a government debt/GDP ratio that is high relative to peers and ongoing political and security risks."
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U.S. Recognizes Israeli Sovereignty over Golan Heights
Video: Why Israeli Sovereignty over the Golan Heights Matters - Dore Gold (Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
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