God says in Hosea 4:6 that his people die because they lack knowledge. Knowing world events clues us in to where we are on the Biblical, prophetic time line. News should prompt us to pray for two things: that the eyes of the lost and deceived are opened to God’s love as expressed through the life and death and life of Yeshua and that God’s Kingdom come on earth.
Why so much Israel news? God always meant Israel to be an example to the nations, an example of His righteousness, His justice, His mercy, His love. She is also a signpost. Consider this. Zion, God’s other name of Jerusalem, means “signpost.” Messiah draws nigh. The events in Zion speak to that.
While the links posted here are mostly news items, some may be lighter and include websites and stories that caught my interest. To get news links in real time or to read my editorial commentary, visit my Twitter feed @RoamingChile or on my Facebook page.
Of course, the big news of the week was Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas taking his case for statehood for the United Nations (and the reactions from the nations). I gave my analysis of U.S. President Obama’s speech on Thursday.
A quick analysis on speeches by Abbas and by Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Of all the things Abbas said, accusing Israel of 63 years of occupation was too much. It’s a lie. Abbas kept referencing “the Catastrophe” of 1948. The catastrophe in 1948 was that the Arab world attacked Israel the day after the British left (after rejecting the UN’s two-state solution in 1947). Like Netanyahu said in his speech, if you want to talk about the “occupation,” start in 1967. The Associated Press also took issue with some of Abbas’ statements. (Full transcript of Abbas’ speech.)
In full disclosure, I love Benjamin Netanyahu. This speech made me love him more. He spoke unpopular truth to a hostile audience boldly. He looked at the Palestinian delegation and challenged them to meet him then and there without preconditions (the Palestinians dismissed it as grandstanding). He challenged the nations for ganging up on Israel since 1975. He unabashedly quoted scripture and dared the Palestinians to acknowledge the Jewish history of the Land. I recommend you read both speeches. (Full transcript of Netanyahu’s speech.)
The Palestinians want the Security Council to move on the request within two weeks. No word on what happens after, though many guess they’ll just go to the General Assembly to get a partial upgrade. Some are concerned that the anti-climatic nature of Friday could make the Palestinians on the ground restless.
There’s bonus satirical video at the end again this week, courtesy of The Daily Show.
Sunday, Sept. 18
- The Christians Of Syria: A Minority’s Dilemma Amidst The Arab Spring
Syrian Christians ponder if backing revolution is risk worth taking, or if Islamists will run them out.
Monday, Sept. 19
- Yemen gov’t fires anti-aircraft guns at protestors, kills 26
The attack was the deadliest in months against protesters, who have been massing daily in Sanaa and other cities since February to demand Saleh’s removal. The protests have swelled during the past week as the movement tries to re-energize, angered by Saleh’s latest decision to deputize his vice president.
- In China, The Hidden Slavery Of The Mentally Disabled
A Henan television report has revealed a shocking case of slave labor of mentally disabled people near the towns of Zhengzhou and Zumadian in Henan Province, China. The police, led by the TV network crew, raided and rescued some 30 mentally handicapped workers.
- 6.8 Magnitude Quake Hits India; High Death Toll Feared
A massive quake in northeastern India has caused damage and deaths as far away as Nepal; casualties are expected to go up as rescuers arrive on the scene.
Tuesday, Sept. 20
- ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ expires. Military gays celebrate.
Just as the formal repeal of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy took effect, Navy Lt. Gary Ross and his partner were married before a small group of family and friends in Duxbury, Vt.
- RC: Penalty for believing in Messiah: death & torture. In Revelation 20, martyrs of Tribulation beheaded. Clue?
A Tale of Two Apostasies
Cases dealing with apostasy in Islam—whereby Muslims who convert to other religions are tortured and executed—are on the rise and need to be acknowledged for what they are: one of Islam’s most visible attempts to suppress the human conscience.
- 5.8 earthquake rocks Guatemala, damage reported
Two earthquakes shook a wide part of Guatemala on Monday, causing some reported damage but no known deaths.
- Global Shofar FlashMob Held Around the World
Jews around the world gathered on Sunday for first-ever global Shofar FlashMob, a two-minute shofar blowing and call for repentance.
- Video: Abbas Says ‘Be Sensible – not a Jewish State’
Abbas unmasks what he really thinks about Israel in a speech in Ramallah: Present to us something sensible – not “the Jewish State.”
Wednesday, Sept. 21
- A peek at the Jewish New Year through food
Grown-Up Apples And Honey For Rosh Hashanah
Many of food writer Deena Prichep’s childhood memories of the Jewish holiday involve a bowl of MacIntoshes and a bear-shaped plastic squeeze bottle. But her grown-up sweet tooth craves a more sophisticated way to invoke a sweet new year. Exit the honey cake, enter the rosemary honey apple galette.
- The Legal Case Against Palestinian Statehood
In The Wall Street Journal, David Rivkin and Lee Casey write that first among the U.N.’s purposes is maintaining international peace and security—and efforts to force recognition of a Palestinian state undercut this goal.
- Israeli settlers accused of burning fields, cutting trees (AP) Yet, nothing of Arabs accused of burning fields, too.
Israeli settlers said to cut trees, burn fields
Israeli settlers and Palestinian villagers threw stones at each other Tuesday, a day after Palestinian officials said settlers burned dozens of acres (hectares) of agricultural land and cut down several hundred olive, fig and almond trees.
Palestinians accused of setting settler fields on fire in Samaria (Arutz7)
Arson in Samaria
An arson attack near Itamar gets massive security response as army gears up for possible PA riots.
Thursday, Sept. 22
- Palestinian response to Obama speech: Hypocrite
Protesters amass near Abbas’ Ramallah office, accuse U.S. President of siding ‘with killers against victims’; activists call for protests in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya.
Obama’s UN speech: Peace is hard. US friend of Israel. Palestine, Israel must talk based on pre-1967 lines. Worth reading.
Full transcript of Obama’s speech at UN General Assembly
U.S. President addresses world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly.
A peek into how some Palestinians on the street view UN statehood bid. (WorldCrunch)
Palestinians Eager For Statehood, But Doubt UN Can Solve Their Problems
“Do you want a flag?” young street vendors ask passersby. The campaign for independent statehood is in full swing in Ramallah and in other big Palestinian cities of the West Bank. At the crossroads, teams of T-shirt wearing youth distribute pennants.
- Typhoon ‘Roke’ Smashes Into Japan, Heads for Nuclear Plant
At least 4 people died in a typhoon of 130 mph winds that smashed into Tokyo, heading for the Fukushima nuclear plant.
Friday, Sept. 23
Rabbi leader of Yad L’Achim dies. Group rescues Israelis in abusive situations, persecutes Messianic Jews. (Artuz7)
Rabbi who Led Assimilation Fight Dies at 84
Rabbi Shalom Dov Lifshitz led the fight against assimilation and missionary activity with his Yad L’Achim organization.
- Palestinian Christian ‘stands in the gap’ for Israel in NYC outside UN. (Arutz7) Must watch.
Palestinian statehood bid seems to fizzle like flotilla 2011 (JPost) Power of prayer. God hears, moves. End is not yet.
Analysis: The downgrading of the Palestinian UN bid
Just as the flotilla crisis fizzled away despite the hype, so will the Palestinian statehood crisis; Israel is not as isolated as it seems.
Even if Palestinian bid fails, ‘dynamics will have shifted such that rules of game will have changed.’ (JPost)
Palestinians seek pride; Israelis fear mischief
Dueling Narratives: Mideast experts discuss what will follow the PA UN statehood bid and what influence it will have on the region and peace talks.
- Israel at the UN: A sucker’s game
‘EU, U.S. are rewarding Palestinians for abandoning the Palestinian-Israeli peace process’
- ‘Leaders of Palestine have consistently said no when presented w chance to build a state of their own’ (BostonGlobe)
No to statehood
IF THE Palestinian Authority genuinely desired international recognition as a sovereign state, Mahmoud Abbas wouldn’t have come to New York to seek membership in the UN General Assembly this week.
- Jewish immigration to Israel increases by almost 20%
“This is a trend that has been increasing: Aliya is younger and better educated,“ Jewish Agency for Israel chairman Sharansky says.
Mexican drug gangs take the grisly violence up a notch with rush-hour body dump. 40,000 dead since Dec 2006 (Time)
Mexico Body Dump: Gangsters Send a Grisly Message on Crime
The dumping of 35 bodies in rush-hour traffic underscores the President’s point that organized crime is killing more people than dictatorships.
Paypal cuts off Christian blogger who has written against homosexuality (WND) Time for another money transfer service?
PayPal blacklists Christian writer
Relax, proclaims a PayPal website. Pay friends family in seconds with PayPal. After all, it’s the easy way to send money in seconds. No checks, no ATMS, no envelopes and stamps, just click the button on your computer. That is, of course, unless…
- PA: Obama will be responsible for failure of peace process
Dozens of Palestinians protest in Ramallah, heeding officials instructions to hold anti-Obama demonstrations in the West Bank; PA official jokes: “Obama has obviously joined the Zionist movement.”
Saturday, Sept. 24
- UK Muslims hold rally against extremism
Thousands of Muslims held a rally in London on Saturday to fight extremism and promote a moderate, inclusive version of Islam.
- UN Chief apologizes to Turkey PM for ‘assault’ by UN guard (YNet) Erdogan can’t get any respect, for which he is desperate
Ban apologizes to Erdogan over UN guard assault
News: UN Chief Ban Ki-moon extends personal apology to Turkish PM over his attack by UN Guard officer
- Hamas: Abbas relinquishing Palestinian rights with UN bid
Ismail Haniyeh says Palestinian people do not beg the world for a state, and the state can’t be created through decisions and initiatives; states liberate their land first and then the political body can be established.
- Palestinian killed in W. Bank clashes with the IDF
Maan report says 33-year-old man shot by IDF soldiers; IDF confirms it was operating in area, had been working to quell violent protests.
- PA unhappy with incomplete Quartet peace initiative
Peace plan doesnt include preconditions of settlement freeze or return to 1967 borders, PA Foreign Minister Riad Malki emphasizes.
Israeli economy just keeps growing faster than the rest of the developed world (Bloomberg)
Israel Punches Above Weight as GDP Beats Developed World – BusinessWeek
The International Monetary Fund this week raised its forecast for Israel and cut its estimate for the global economy on the impact of the European debt crisis. Israel’s gross domestic product will expand 4.8 percent this year, according to the Washington-based lender. That’s up from an April forecast of 3.8 percent and triple the pace for the average of the 34 advanced economies.
If nothing else, follow-through on UN statehood bid gives Abbas street cred with Palestinian everyman
Palestinian statehood bid brings Abbas a personal victory
Thousands of Palestinians gathered in central Ramallah Friday night to hear Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speak to the United Nations and formally announce the bid for UN statehood membership.
- Full transcript of Netanyahu speech at UN General Assembly
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the 66th session of the General Assembly at United Nations headquarters, following Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ speech.
- Full transcript of Abbas speech at UN General Assembly
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses UN General Assembly after submitting application for recognition to UN Chief Ban Ki-moon.
Horrific stories out of Syria get worse: graphic story of 18-year-old woman found dismembered, flayed.
Syrians Continue Protests, As Evidence Of Regime’s Violence Mounts
12 people were killed in Syria protests today, as the regime is accused of torturing and mutilating an 18-year-old woman.
- Putin Agrees To Run For Russian Presidency
Vladimir Putin on Saturday agreed to run for the Russian presidency in 2012, almost certainly ensuring his return to the office he previously held for eight years. His United Russia party also approved his proposal that the current president, Dmitry Medvedev, take over Putin’s role as prime minister.
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Can’t resist satire. Hope Jon Stewart’s look at the UN bid makes you chuckle. Expletives bleeped out.