VFI News Aug 6, 2021

Iran's Revolutionary Guard Drone Commander Behind Ship Attack

Saeed Ara Jani, head of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ UAV Command, was behind the attack on the Israel-linked Mercer Street ship, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and Defense Minister Benny Gantz revealed in a briefing with diplomats from UN Security Council member states on Wednesday.

The defense minister said he would provide the participating countries with detailed intelligence on the matter.

Foreign Minister Yair Lapid pointed out that Iran’s latest attacks “are on international trade routes. This is an attack on freedom of movement. This is an international crime.”

Iran struck an oil tanker with connections to Israel near Oman on July 29, killing two crew members on board. It was the first deadly attack in the continuing maritime war-between-wars and has led Jerusalem to accuse Tehran of “sowing violence and destruction.”

The two crew members killed in the attack on Mercer Street were the Romanian captain and a British security officer. There were no other casualties. (JPost/VFI News)

“God, we ask that those who wish destruction upon Your people will be stopped in their tracks.”

The articles included in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Vision for Israel. We try to provide accurate reporting on news pertinent to Israel, the Middle East, the diaspora, and Jewish issues around the world—and we hope that you find it both informative and useful for intercessory prayer.

Six Palestinians Injured in Clashes with Israeli Security Forces in Jenin

Six Palestinians were wounded in a firefight with Israeli Police in the city of Jenin overnight on Monday, August 2, as Israeli security forces conducted arrest operations.

The arrest operation was carried out by IDF troops from the Menashe Regional Brigade along with Israel Police and its Counterterrorism Unit.

According to Palestinian News Agency WAFA, Israeli forces and undercover units clashed with Palestinian youths after they raided the city’s industrial area. One Palestinian was seriously injured in his stomach after being shot by troops and he was rushed to a hospital in Nablus. The other five were injured after being shot by troops as well.

A statement released by the Border Police said that troops fired towards a number of Palestinians who fired live ammunition, hurled explosives and Molotov cocktails at them.

While there were no injuries to Israeli security forces, an armored vehicle was damaged in the fighting. (JPost/VFI News)

“God, we ask that You protect Your people and Your Land from violence and terrorism.”

Gantz: Iran is 10 Weeks from Breakout to a Nuclear Weapon

Tehran will be able to break out to a nuclear weapon within 10 weeks, Defense Minister Benny Gantz told diplomats from UN Security Council member states on Wednesday as tensions ratcheted up between Iran and the international community over its maritime attacks.

“Iran has violated all of the guidelines set in the JCPOA [nuclear agreement] and is only around 10 weeks away from acquiring weapons-grade materials necessary for a nuclear weapon,” Gantz warned.

“Therefore,” he added, “it is time to act. The world must apply economic sanctions and take operative action against the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps,” which has targeted shipping vessels.

In recent weeks, top Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, and Gantz have expressed alarm to the US and others that Iran is taking advantage of a long pause in negotiations to return to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action to dramatically advance its nuclear program.

The talks have been on hold since June, and the regime in Tehran says they will not restart at least until after its new president, Ebrahim Raisi, forms a new government later this month. (JPost / VFI News)

For you equipped me with strength for the battle; you made those who rise against me sink under me. - Psalm 18:49

Ministers Approve Slew of New Restrictions to Curb Covid Resurgence

The high-level coronavirus cabinet on Tuesday evening approved a raft of new restrictions that will go into effect on Sunday, August 8, after the daily COVID-19 caseload surpassed 3,000 for the first time since March.

Under the new rules, which the ministers adopted on the advice of Health Ministry officials, masks are to be required outdoors for gatherings of 100 people or more; in-office work for public servants is to be scaled back to 50 percent, with the private sector encouraged to allow employees to work from home; and vaccinated caretakers of infected children under 12 years old are to be required to self-isolate.

In its effort to contain the renewed COVID-19 outbreak, which has been blamed on the fast-spreading Delta variant, the government also agreed to expand the Green Pass system to all gatherings from August 20 — not merely those with over 100 people, as is currently the case — and restrict access to public venues to unvaccinated children.

The high-level coronavirus cabinet on Tuesday evening approved a raft of new restrictions that will go into effect on Sunday, August 8, after the daily COVID-19 caseload surpassed 3,000 for the first time since March.

(TOI / VFI News)

"Lord, we ask that you would heal those who are sick with COVID in Israel and around the world and bring an end to this pandemic".

Donation of Shoes to the Children of Ashdod

We donated shoes to 44 underprivileged children in Ashdod. Told that these gifts were especially for them—from people who loved them—their faces were filled with joy. Thank you for helping us bless these dear children, and for helping them in their walk with the Lord.

Lebanon Seethes with Grief and Rage as it Marks One Year since Beirut Blast

Lebanon on Wednesday marked a year since a cataclysmic explosion ravaged Beirut, with a mix of grief over lost lives and rage at the impunity for its worst peacetime disaster at a time when its economy was already in tatters.

Shortly after 6 p.m. on August 4, 2020, a stock of ammonium nitrate fertilizer haphazardly stored at the city’s port exploded and left swaths of the Lebanese capital looking like a war zone.

What went down as one of the largest non-nuclear blasts in history killed at least 214 people, leveled entire neighborhoods, irreparably scarred the nation’s psyche, and deepened the country’s economic abyss. With more than half the country living under the poverty line, former colonial power France aims to raise humanitarian aid at another international conference co-hosted by the UN on the anniversary.

President Emmanuel Macron, at the start of the event, pledged 100 million euros ($118 million) from France alone. But as the probe into the disaster stalls, he warned that Lebanese leaders “owe their people the truth and transparency” over what happened.

The country’s already reviled political class has hidden behind its proclaimed immunity to avoid prosecution, delaying the lead investigating judge’s work at every turn. (TOI / VFI News)

Archaeologists Unearth 1st Jerusalem Evidence of Quake from Bible’s Book of Amos

The multi-year coronavirus pandemic is now firmly branded as a benchmark in modern memory. Likewise, in the first verse of the Book of Amos, the 8th century BCE biblical prophet referred to “two years before the earthquake” as an anchor to the events he was about to relate. Two centuries later, the prophet Zechariah again referred to this destructive earthquake period, so deeply was it ingrained in the collective psyche.

Now, for the first time, a team of Israel Antiquities Authority archaeologists in Jerusalem’s City of David report that they have found unprecedented concrete evidence of this 8th century BCE earthquake in the ancient capital.

Until now, the earliest destruction layer of Jerusalem comes from the Babylonian conquest of 586 BCE. For archaeologists, an earlier historical anchor — if proven through hard, securely dated evidence — serves as an important stratigraphical benchmark for scientific excavations in Jerusalem. (TOI / VFI News)

“God, we ask you to look over the archeologists who unearth history, and continue to build our faith in Your Word.”

Controversial Holocaust Memorial in Westminster Approved

A major Holocaust memorial, set to be built in London’s Victoria Tower Gardens, has been approved after many years of debate.

The memorial, to be built next to the Houses of Parliament, will feature an underground study center, and 23 bronze fins will be erected to represent the number of countries whose Jewish populations were persecuted during the Holocaust.

First proposed by prime minister David Cameron in 2016, the plans were rejected by the Westminster City Council’s planning committee amid opposition from local residents and several peers. The proposals were finally put through a public inquiry, which took place online last year, and the divisive project was finally green-lighted.

Backers of the £100 million project include London Mayor Sadiq Khan, Labour leader Keir Starmer, the Association of Jewish Refugees, the Holocaust Educational Trust, and the Jewish Board of Deputies.

Objectors argued that a Jewish memorial being granted such a coveted London spot falls into antisemites’ depiction of Jews as a privileged group receiving “special treatment.” They also expressed concern over the central location being the target of terrorist attacks.

Another aspect to draw criticism is the architectural design, described by free-speech activist Carl Benjamin as “hideous.” Others referred to the monument’s scale as being out of character for the famously tranquil oasis, frequented by over 3 million visitors a year. (JPost / VFI News)

“Therefore let those who suffer according to God's will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.” - 1 Peter 4:19

Germany Announces $40 Million Investment in Antisemitism Research

The German government said Wednesday it will strengthen its battle against the quickly growing antisemitism in the country by investing 35 million euros ($41.5 million) into research and educational projects focused on understanding its causes and effectively fighting hatred of Jews.

Police registered 2,351 cases of antisemitism in Germany last year, which was an increase of 15% compared to the year before, officials reported.

“This is the highest number in the last couple of years,” said German Education and Research Minister Anja Karliczek. “There’s reason for worry that this is only the tip of the iceberg and that the unreported number of daily attacks on Jews is substantially higher.”

She said millions would be given to universities to examine the different facets of hatred against Jews and to develop strategies on what to best do against it. (TOI / VFI News)

 “For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake” - Philippians 1:29

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

Want to see more from VFI? Follow us on Facebook! Our official Facebook name is Vision for Israel. Follow us there and please hit “like” if you like us.