Monthly Archives: March 2022

Terrorism In Israel – Defending Ourselves

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Jerusalem, Israel — March 30, 2022 … The Bnei Brak terror attack, which took place next to Tel Aviv, was the third fatal attack in a week and brought the death toll to 11, the highest number of people murdered by terrorists in recent years.

Sarah Tuttle-Singer, one of Israel’s finest writers penned the following: “Last May we had a war — and relatively speaking, my kids and I were lucky: Israel has a missile defense system. We have bomb shelters. And we have sirens. And as soon as those sirens went off, we would run for our lives.

For those living by the Gazan border, it’s a lot harder — there isn’t the luxury of time. And too many people died in rocket attacks down south , and have over the years — including sweet little Daniel Tragerman who was murdered in a rocket attack in 2014. He was the same age as my son. My kids and have 90 seconds to get from our door to the public shelter — and during the war in 2014, we still didn’t make it on time every time, before the ground shook and the air shimmered. But still — I DID know when to run and when to drop to the ground and cover my children with my own body. And the war ended. (But we still have nightmares).

But this is different now — there is no missile defense system against stabbings and shootings. We can’t lock ourselves in a shelter all day. Stabbings and shootings have no siren so we don’t know when to run. Stabbings and shootings can happen anywhere at any time. They can happen in a park on a quiet bench. They can happen in the market, with soldiers standing just a few steps away. They can happen in front of a school or in a synagogue or on the street.

Everyone is on edge right now — most of us feel that prickle of fear just below the neck or deep in our stomachs — because when these attacks are random, everyone is a potential target. Everyone.

The young rabbi at the Western Wall. The barista with the dirty laugh. The soldier who still wears braces. The guy who sells the best pomegranates in the Ramle Shuk. The single mother with two children. The young father who will die for his son. This mother. My children.

The headlines you’ll read outside of Israel or the Jewish world won’t tell you this — but I will. Even though we live in a complicated part of the world, murdering innocent people isn’t complicated: It is wrong, pure and simple.

And while we are a resilient people — after all, we’ve survived THIS long despite devastating odds — It’s hard right now. Please hold the thought — and if you have questions, talk to me. I’m still here.”

Thank you Sarah. Your words could not be more accurate or profound.

The Israel News Agency totally agrees with an editorial in the Jerusalem Post: Israel’s mission for the foreseeable future: Halt terrorism. The Post states that Prime Minister Naftali Bennett held consultations with senior security officials, vowing to the citizens of Israel that his government and security forces will do all they can to fight terrorism “with persistence, diligence and an iron fist.”

Bennett said it “requires the security establishment to be creative and for us to adapt ourselves to the new threat and read the tell-tale signs of lone individuals, sometimes without organizational affiliation, and to be in control on the ground in order to thwart terrorism even before it happens.”

The Jerusalem Post and the Israel News Agency totally support the following:

  • Continue to boost security forces with the IDF, police, MAGAV, MAGAV volunteers and keep them on high alert as well as tighten security at checkpoints and in urban centers throughout the country, especially as Muslims approach their month-long holiday of Ramadan that starts next week.
  • Work together with the PA and friendly countries in the region to gather intelligence on ISIS operatives and other terrorist organizations in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
  • Demolish the homes of the terrorists as a punitive measure to deter future attacks.
  • Demand that the PA stop its so-called “Martyrs Fund,” which pays monthly cash stipends to the families of Palestinian terrorists killed, wounded or imprisoned.
  • Urge all citizens to be vigilant, particularly at sites that are vulnerable to terrorist attacks – markets, malls, synagogues, cafés and other places where crowds gather – as well as on public transportation throughout Israel.

Israel has never lost a war. Not against an army from nations with borders, not against an army of Jihadist terrorists who communicate and coordinate on the Internet. Israel has the INTEL and the manpower to protect it’s citizens.
This is a time to embrace and thank the men and women of the IDF, the Shabak (internal security forces) and the Mossad. This is a time to take pride in seeing thousands proudly wearing the uniforms of Israel and for those whose uniforms you do not see.

We do not have the luxury of losing a war nor living in fear.

Four Murdered In Israel Terror Attack

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

March 22, 2022 — Beersheba, Israel … Four people have been murdered and several others wounded in a terror attack in southern Israel.

Three were stabbed to death outside the BIG shopping center in Beersheba, while a fourth was rammed by a vehicle driven by the assailant.

The terrorist was shot dead by a bus driver. The terrorist was an Israeli Arab.

Mohammad Ghaleb Abu al-Qi’an, a former school teacher from Israeli Bedouin town of Hura, was imprisoned in 2016 for trying to recruit others to join Jihadist group ISIS, to fight in Syria

It is the deadliest such attack in Israel for several years.
Tuesday’s stabbing attack was praised by both the Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror groups.

The terror victims named: Two mothers of 3, a Chabad rabbi, a brother of 4.

Doris Yahbas, 49, Laura Yitzhak, 43, and Menahem Yehezkel, 67, were stabbed to death; Moshe Kravitzky, 50, died when terrorist car rammed his bicycle.

Israel, Jewish Agency, Jewish Federations Rescuing Jews From Ukraine

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

March 10, 2022 — Jerusalem, Israel … The Jewish Agency for Israel has begun emergency operations to rescue Jews from the war in Ukraine.

Three flights of Jewish Ukrainian refugees have arrived in Israel carrying 150 Jews from Poland and 100 from Romania . Returning to Israel with the new olim (immigrants) is Acting Chair of The Jewish Agency Yaakov Hagoel and President and CEO of The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) Eric Fingerhut.

The Jewish Agency continues to have ongoing humanitarian and rescue operations in four countries neighboring Ukraine: Poland, Moldova, Romania and Hungary.

As of today, March 10, The Jewish Agency will significantly increase its operations inside Ukraine to maximize the ability to save Jewish lives, Hagoel said on Wednesday during a visit to the region.

A total of 320 Olim from Ukraine landed in Israel on March 6 on two flights from Moldova and Poland. This was in addition to a separate flight that brought around 100 orphans on a flight from Romania. These new immigrants (Olim) are staying in hotels across Israel for about a month, coordinated by the Israeli Ministry of Aliyah and Integration. Afterwards, the Ukrainian immigrants will be transferred to their permanent residences, located in communities throughout Israel.

The Jewish Agency has initiated a humanitarian aid operation called ‘Torenu’ (Our Turn), which is being organized together with the Federation of Local Authorities in Israel. The humanitarian operation is collecting basic necessities from the Israeli public and transferring them to Jewish Agency centers active along the Ukrainian border. These items mainly consist of winter equipment like tents, sleeping bags, blankets, coats, gloves, hats and scarves and hygienic items like soap, shampoo, deodorant, toilet paper and toothpaste.

The Jewish Agency’s Director General and CEO Amira Ahronoviz arrived in the region on March 6 to closely monitor the large-scale Jewish Agency emergency operations and also meet with heads of Jewish communities. Ahronoviz is accompanied by The Jewish Agency’s Regional Director for the Former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe and Germany Roman Polonsky.

The Jewish Agency has raised more than $19 million since the beginning of the war to support humanitarian and rescue operations along the Ukrainian border. Over $11 million coming from its partners at JFNA and Keren Hayesod. The current needs of this operation stand at over $85 million.

Over 2,000 Jews have so far arrived at Aliyah (immigration to Israel) processing centers run by The Jewish Agency and the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) that are located in countries bordering Ukraine. The future immigrants (Olim) are escorted from the border to temporary housing facilities where they receive their visas to Israel.

More than 4,130 beds were rented in hotels and other facilities in neighboring countries along the border to accommodate the thousands of Jews seeking to make Aliyah. Meanwhile, The Jewish Agency is also involved in working alongside local organizations to secure additional lodging for these refugees. Currently, 1,800 beds – including at a facility inside Ukraine on the outskirts of Lviv – are occupied by refugees waiting to move to Israel.

Over 16,000 telephone calls have been received at the special hotline established together with the IFCJ, 6,600 of which were from Jews seeking to move to Israel (Aliyah) as soon as possible. Other calls came from concerned relatives in Israel, seeking guidance on how they could help their loved ones in Ukraine. Call centers also direct refugees within Ukraine and inform them how they can receive rescue services from The Jewish Agency, IFCJ and other local organizations.

Since 1929, The Jewish Agency for Israel has been working to secure a vibrant Jewish future. It was instrumental in founding and building the State of Israel and continues to serve as the main link between the Jewish state and Jewish communities everywhere.