Monthly Archives: June 2019

Netanyahu: Israel Will Not Allow Iran To Build Nuclear Weapons

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Jerusalem, Israel — June 17, 2019 … Iran announced on Monday that it would abandon the 2015 nuclear pact and violate a central element of the 2015 agreement to limit its nuclear program. Iran is making the threat to secure help from Europe to offset the effects of American sanctions which addresses Iranian terror activities and more recently attacking commercial ships in the Gulf of Oman .

Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization said that within days it expects to have produced and kept in its stockpiles more low-enriched uranium — the sort used to fuel power plants — than allowed by the 2015 deal, which the Trump administration withdrew from last year. The agency made clear it would begin enriching the uranium to much higher levels of purity, edging it closer to what would be necessary to produce nuclear weapons.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to the Iranian threat: “Israel stands at the forefront with the US, with moderate Arab countries and with other countries, in opposition to Iranian aggression.”

“Today Iran threatened to enrich uranium to higher levels beyond that which is permitted by the nuclear agreement. This does not surprise us because just as when we brought the secret nuclear archive from Teheran to Israel, we discovered the extent to which Iran has violated its promise to the international community – its promise to report truthfully on its nuclear program. Should Iran make good on its current threats, and violate the nuclear agreement, the international community will need to immediately impose the sanctions on the regime that was agreed upon in advance, the ‘snapback sanctions’.

In any case, Israel will not allow Iran to achieve nuclear weapons.”

Netanyahu concluded: “Alongside the peace agreements with Egypt and Jordan, we are tightening – in an unprecedented manner – relations with additional countries in the Arab and Islamic world. These countries increasingly understand that Israel is not their enemy. On the contrary, Israel is a steadfast and stable ally that – with them – seeks to ensure the future of our region.”

Speaking at the Arak heavy water facility in a live broadcast Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said on state TV: “We have quadrupled the rate of enrichment and even increased it more recently, so that in 10 days it will bypass the 300 kg limit. Kamalvandi said Iran needs 5 percent enrichment for its nuclear power plant in the southern port of Bushehr, and 20 percent enrichment for a Tehran research reactor.

The 20 percent level is only one step away from weapons-grade material.

Iranian officials continue to threaten Israel by saying that they are improving the accuracy of their country’s missiles and warning that terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah were prepared to unleash an “inferno” on the Jewish state. One of the core pillars and revolutionary ideals of the Islamic Republic is destroying the Jewish state.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei recently stated that “the Zionist regime will perish in the not so far future. Our strategy is to erase Israel from the map.”

Jewish Homes Burn As Anti-Semitism Surges In US

Photo: Lloyd Mitchell

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

New York — June 15, 2019 … A massive fire in Brooklyn, New York destroyed at least three buildings early Thursday morning, injuring at least 12 people, including a baby.

The fire broke out just after 4 AM at the two-family home of Rabbi Jonathan Max, and quickly spread to both neighboring houses.

“There is no question that everyone is alive today because the houses had working smoke detectors,” said Misaskim director Yanky Meyer. “There were only seconds for people to be able to get out here. There were no minutes.”

Meyer said that a Jewish family with a six week old baby was trapped in the attic in one of the adjacent homes as the fire raged on the stairs, their only exit.  The family was evacuated by the fire department who used a ladder truck to extricate them from the burning building.

Video from the scene showed flames leaping from the roof of one home, and the structure to its left already little more than a charred hulk. Firefighters reported that two roofs had completely collapsed.

While Investigators are tight lipped, sources say the fire is believed to have been set by at least one man, who has a history of anti-semitic acts and targeted Rabbi Max, a teacher at Yeshiva Rabbi Chaim Berlin.

An accelerant is believed to have been used in the fire with raw video footage showing the massive blaze erupting in a matter of seconds.

In a press conference held this morning, Fire Chief Thomas Richardson said that it took less than five minutes for the FDNY to respond to the fire, with all three homes already engulfed by the time fire crews arrived on scene.  The fire was upgraded to a three alarm fire within five minutes, with 40 fire units, 25 EMS members and 170 firefighters keeping the flames from spreading to additional homes.  The fire was upgraded to a four alarm fire before it was finally brought under control after 7 AM this morning.

Three adults, a baby and one firefighter were all hospitalized for injuries and/or smoke inhalation. All are in stable condition.

The Jewish community in the United States experienced near-historic levels of anti-Semitism last year, with attacks against Jews and Jewish institutions doubling in number, according to new data from the Anti-Defamation League.

A total of 1,879 anti-Semitic incidents across the United States were reported in 2018, the third-highest year on record since the tracking of such data in the 1970s. Those incidents included cases of assaults, harassment and vandalism.

A professional, non-profit organization JewishSecurityServices.com has been created in the US to address anti-semitism with the creation of security plans for synagogues that includes security training for hundreds of Jewish communities. Jewish Security Services is presently seeking investors and partners with the mission of securing all Jewish communities in the US. The founders of Jewish Security Services are security and anti-terrorism professionals from both Israel and the United States.

First Lady of Israel, Nechama Rivlin, Dies at 73

Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Jerusalem, Israel — June 4, 2019 … Nechama Rivlin, the wife of President Reuven Rivlin, died Tuesday at the age of 73, a day before her 74th birthday.

A statement from the family Tuesday said: “The Rivlin family wishes to thank the people of Israel and religious leaders who have continued to be concerned about Nechama’s welfare, who have sent letters and children’s drawings to the hospital and the President’s Residence and who have prayed for her recovery every day, every hour.”

The family expressed their gratitude to “the staff of the Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva for their devoted, sensitive and professional treatment during the past few months, night and day, with open hearts and shining faces.”

They asked for “the general public and the media to allow the family to gather in mourning at this time and to refrain from contacting family members directly.”

The funeral is set to take place on Wednesday afternoon in Jerusalem.

Nechama Rivlin had suffered for several years from pulmonary fibrosis, a condition in which scar tissue accumulates in the lungs and impedes normal breathing. Rivlin was seldom seen without her portable oxygen tank. Yet despite her illness, she accompanied her husband on most of his state visits abroad including to India and Spain.

Mrs. Rivlin was a popular first lady who focused on the arts, the environment and children with special needs, and was a trusted adviser to her husband.

Nechama Rivlin was born on June 4, 1945 on Moshav Herut, a farming community in central Israel co-founded by her parents, Mendi and Drora Shulman, who immigrated from Ukraine. She enrolled at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1964 studying botany and genetics, and began working there as a researcher three years later. She then worked as a scientific secretary at the university’s Institute of Life Sciences.

In 1970 she met her husband at a party. They were married a year later, and had three children, Rikva, Anat and Ran. 

A young Nechama Rivlin

A young Nechama Rivlin

In September 2016, during a presidential visit to Kiev, Ukraine, Mrs. Rivlin found it difficult to hold back tears as her husband, in the Kiev parliament, read aloud the names of her family members who had perished on Ukrainian soil.

After his speech, she said: “To hear my mother’s name was a difficult moment for me, the tears were choking me. After a few minutes, I collected myself and listened to the speech with pride. I, Nechama, daughter of Drora Mintz, wife of the president of the State of Israel, was on Ukrainian soil and saw victory in this moment.”

Mrs. Rivlin was careful to keep herself out of the media spotlight since her husband’s election as a Likud MK in 1988, and she was not significantly involved in his political life.

At the height of the 2014 presidential race, she wrote on her husband’s Facebook page: “Rubi, my beloved and my friend, I did not marry the president, so whatever happens, you will always be my lover and my friend.”

In March, she underwent a lung transplant at Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva, receiving the organ of 19-year-old Yair Yechezkel Halabali, who died in Eilat days earlier. Nine days after the transplant, she underwent another surgical procedure to support the transplant.

In their message Tuesday, the Rivlin family expressed their gratitude to the Halabli family, “for their inspiring dignity and the wonderful thing they did.”

The president did not leave his wife’s bedside during her stay in hospital. In great pain, Mrs. Rivlin had to learn to breathe again.

During her rehabilitation, her medical team created the illusion of her still being attached to an oxygen tank, while in reality she was spending several hours breathing on her own. When she learned of their trick, she was incredulous.

At the beginning of May, Mrs. Rivlin’s condition worsened, leaving her suffering from severe shortness of breath and exhaustion. The president, who was on a state visit to Canada at the time, immediately decided to cut short his trip and return to Israel to be with her.

Nechama Rivlin at the President's Residence in 2018

Nechama Rivlin at the President’s Residence in 2018

“Together with every Israeli citizen, my wife Sara and I are deeply saddened at the passing of the wife of the president Nechama Rivlin,” Prime Minister Netanyau said.

“We all prayed for her recovery during this recent period in which she fought heroically and with spirit. We send condolences from the bottom of our hearts to the president and all his family.”

Although there is no official First Lady in Israel, Reuven Rivlin bestowed the title on his wife, and occasionally declared that he was married to the wife of the President of Israel.  

Nechama Rivlin is survived by her husband, three children and seven grandchildren.

Israel Parade in New York, World’s Largest Jewish Event, On Sunday, June 2

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

New York, NY — June 1, 2019 … Governor Andrew Cuomo; Mayor Bill de Blasio; New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli; New York Attorney General Letitia James; New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer; City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Members of the City Council; U.S. Representatives, Jerry Nadler, Carolyn Maloney, Tom Souzzi, and Elliot Engel; Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer; Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez; Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark; Consul General of Israel in New York Amb. Dani Dayan; Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon; and other local and international officials are expected to join 40,000 marchers at the 2019 Celebrate Israel Parade.

The Parade kicks off on Sunday, June 2, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, from 57 Street to 74 Street.

Grand Marshal Edward A. Mermelstein and Honorary Grand Marshals, including Ted Comet, Founder of the Celebrate Israel Parade; Siggy FlickerAuthor and TV Personality; Liel Leibovitz and Stephanie ButnickCo-Hosts of the Unorthodox podcast; Sid Rosenberg,Co-Host of Bernie & Sid in the Morning; and Elizabeth Savetsky, Founder of Excessories Expert,will march in the parade.

Performers at this year’s parade include Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish, DJ Itay Galo, The Moshav Band, Barynya Entertainment, Holocaust Survivor Band, Matt Weiss aka Matt Dubb, Young Gravy, Omri Anghel, Kosha Dillz,SOULFARM, and Milk & Honeys.

This year’s creative theme for marching groups and floats is “Only in Israel” from the renowned Hebrew song Rak B’Yisrael.

DATE: Sunday, June 2, 2019

TIME:  Parade – 11am – 4pm

WHERE:  Parade Route – Fifth Avenue, from 57th St. to 74th St.                           

Tomorrow’s @CelebrateIsrael Parade in New York is our answer to Iran’s show of hatred against the State of Israel. In the face of this continued wave of anti-Semitism, we will demonstrate our strength and unity with UN ambassadors. Join us tomorrow at 1:00pm! #StandWithIsrael pic.twitter.com/IQVDd6ByfH— Ambassador Danny Danon | דני דנון (@dannydanon) June 1, 2019

We will be marching directly after @FIDF on June 2nd #togetheronFifth #Israelparade @CelebrateIsrael pic.twitter.com/iD8SxzCc82— VolunteersForIsrael (@VFI_USA) May 28, 2019

Hebrew Academy of Long Beach practices their moves for the #CelebrateIsrael Parade. #TogetherOnFifth #OnlyInIsrael pic.twitter.com/RY5GKjpRmU— Celebrate Israel (@CelebrateIsrael) May 29, 2019

5th Avenue CLOSED to vehicles & bicycles TOMORROW, Sunday, June 2nd from East 55th Street to East 79th Street & some side streets, starting at approximately 10:30am for the #CelebrateIsrael Parade 🇮🇱.#TogetherOnFifth #UpperEastSide #UES pic.twitter.com/zs0LpOYmFN— NYPD 19th Precinct (@NYPD19Pct) June 1, 2019

For the latest information on the 55th Annual Parade, please visit the Parade website at celebrateisraelny.org, follow on Twitter, @celebrateisrael, using #TogetherOnFifth, visit the Facebook page, Celebrate Israel Parade and subscribe to the YouTube Channel: youtube.com/celebrateisraelny.
The parade will be livestreamed from 12 pm to 3 pm on celebrateisraelny.org.

We thank IsraelPR.com for much of the above content.