Israel's War Of Independence Has Resumed

Aug. 30….(FOJ)
As IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Moshe Yaalon maintains that Israel's War of Independence has been resumed, it is apparent that the existence of Israel lies at the root of the burdensome dilemma of the Middle East. Israel fought for its survival in the 1948 War of Independence against 5 regular Arab armies that invaded the tiny new nation with the intent of extermination. In the decades since 1948, Israel was able to withstand 3 other major wars by its Arab neighbors. Then twenty one months ago after the Camp David fiasco in which Israel presented a proposal that was supposed to secure a peace with the Palestinians, but instead resulted in the first stage of a second Arab war seeking the extinction of Israel. Therefore the issue of division between Israel and the Palestinians is rooted in the lack of recognition of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish State. The war on terrorism, and the related Israeli-Palestinian Conflict has evolved into an Arab/Muslim mobilization for a war of jihad, and the non-recognition of Israel's right to exist. The Arab Middle East and fundamental Islam has begun the mobilization of the Palestinian people for a war with the goal of bringing about Israel's collapse. America's declared War on Terror could potentially escalate into a wider war involving Israel and many of the nations around the Mid-east region.

Palestinians Considered Oslo A “Trojan Horse”

Aug. 30….(Harpazo)
That the Palestinian Authority plans to destroy Israel in stages through the Oslo Accords are supported by numerous statements in Arabic by Palestinian leaders. Palestinian leaders such as Faisal Husseini, former PA representative for Jerusalem affairs, have explicitly stated that the Oslo process, which began in 1993, is a Trojan horse designed to wipe Israel off the map. "Had the U.S. and Israel realized, before Oslo, that all that was left of the Palestinian National movement and the Pan-Arab movement was a wooden horse called Arafat or the PLO, they would never have opened their fortified gates and let it inside their walls," Husseini said in an interview with the Egyptian publication Al-Arabi', June 24, 2001. Husseini said that the Intifada "could have been much better, broader, and more significant had we made it clearer to ourselves that the Oslo agreement, or any other agreement, is just a temporary procedure, or just a step towards something bigger. "We distinguish the strategic, long-term goals from the political-phased goals, which we are compelled to temporarily accept due to international pressure," Husseini said. "Palestine, according to the higher strategy, is 'from the river to the sea." Palestinian Media Watch says its research demonstrates a clear and united worldview within the Palestinian leadership that defines Israel as a colony that stole the land of "Palestine" and thus has no right to exist. In speeches, sermons, educational programs and school textbooks published by the PA, the Oslo process is called a "stage," a temporary agreement that is necessary "because of the current balance of power" in which Israel has a huge military advantage. Israeli Arab Knesset Member Abd-Al Malek Dahamshe says: "Our problem with Israel is not a border problem, but one of existence." Oslo is just the first step in the destruction of Israel. Abd El Aziz Shahian, Palestinian Authority Minister of Supplies, said in an interview May 20, 2000, with Al Ayyam, an Arabic daily in the Palestinian territories. "The Palestinian people accepted the Oslo agreements as a first step and not as a permanent settlement, based on the premise that the war and struggle in the land is more efficient than a struggle from a distant land," he said, referring to the Palestinian Liberation Organization's base in Tunisia prior to the Oslo process.

Palestinian Statehood not end of the road

Yasser Arafat's deputy, Othman Abu Arbiah, has stated that the establishment of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital is a means toward eliminating Israel. "At this stage we'll prevail in our struggle toward the goals of the stages." "The goal of this stage is the establishment of the independent Palestinian state, with its capital in Jerusalem. When we achieve this, it will be a positive step and it will advance us to the next stage via other ways and means." Abu Arbiah said "every Palestinian must know clearly and unequivocally that the independent Palestinian State, with Jerusalem as its capital is not the end of the road. The [rise of] the Palestinian state is a stage after which there will be another stage and that is state in all of Palestine in the place of Israel." Imad Alfalugi, the PA minister of communication says; "Our people have hope for the future, that the occupation state (Israel) will cease to exist."

Claim rooted in Isalm

The preacher of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Sheikh Yousuf Abu Sneina, declared, in a distinct religious context, the belief that all of Israel is "Palestine" forever. "The Islamic land of Palestine is one and can not be divided. "The land of Palestine is Waqf land that belongs to Muslims throughout the world and no one has the right to act freely or the right to make concessions or to abandon her. Whoever does this betrays a trust and is nothing more than a loathsome criminal whose abode is in Hell!" Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, PA-appointed mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine, said that emphasis on gaining Jerusalem should not be viewed as conceding other parts of Israel. We have announced a number of times that from a religious point of view Palestine running from the sea to the river is the Islamic belief." Dr. Ahmed Yousuf Abu Halbiah, a member of Palestinian Sharianic (Islamic law) Rulings Council says, "We the nation of Palestine, and our fate from Allah is to be the vanguard in the war against the Jews until the resurrection of the dead, as the Prophet Muhammad said: The resurrection of the dead will not come until you do battle with the Jews and kill them. We the Palestinians, are the vanguard in this issue, in this battle, whether we want to or whether we refuse. Dr. Muhammad Ibrahim Madi, a PA religious leader, said on Palestinian television, April 12, 2002: "We are positive that Allah will help us triumph. Our belief is firm that one day we will enter Jerusalem as conquerors!

Syria Cited In Iraqi Buildup

Aug. 30….(Middle East News)
Syria has been identified as a key player in Iraq's military buildup. Leading military experts told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that Syria serves as a key conduit for the smuggling of weapons and components of military platforms to Baghdad. The experts said the Bush administration has not cited Syrian involvement yet because it hopes that Damascus will retreat from its Iraqi alliance as the US adds the pressure on Saddam Hussein.

EU To Layout Roadmap for Peace

Aug. 30….(Jerusalem Post)
The European Union is ready to propose its own road map leading first to the proclamation of an autonomous Palestinian state. Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller, whose country holds the European Union's rotating presidency is scheduled to visit Saudi Arabia next Monday, Egypt on Tuesday, and Israel and the Palestinian Authority areas on Wednesday, where he said he expects to meet both Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and PA Chairman Yasser Arafat, and layout the EU peace plan. The first phase of the plan would ensure security in Israel! Secondly, the Palestinians must carry out political reforms, and the third phase would involve final border negotiations and a solution to thorny issue of Jerusalem's future status.

Atheist Seeks End to Hill Chaplaincies

Aug. 30….(Washington Post)
The California atheist who sued to remove "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance now wants to kick the House and Senate chaplains out of Congress. Michael A. Newdow, a lawyer and emergency room doctor, this week filed suit in federal district court in Washington contending that it is unconstitutional for taxpayer-funded chaplains to pray in Congress. “If congressmen want to go to church, [then] walk down the block like other Americans do and go to church,'' Newdow said in an interview yesterday. "Don't get my government engaged in it. There are some people who don't love God Almighty. That's why we have an Establishment Clause," the constitutional ban on government establishment of an official religion. Newdow says he is on a crusade to take God out of government. He wants the words "In God We Trust" off money, presidents to quit talking about God at their inaugurations, and members of Congress to be prohibited from offering resolutions in the House and Senate talking about God. Newdow, who says he "absolutely denies the existence of any Supreme Being," claims he applied for the jobs of House and Senate chaplains, and was passed over.

Arafat Declares Executed Collaborator a Martyr

Aug. 29….(Jerusalem Post)
Four months after he was dragged to the main square in Ramallah and executed as a "collaborator," Ibrahim Abdo was declared a martyr Wednesday by the Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat. Abdo was kidnapped on April 22 by masked men who belonged to Arafat's Aksa Martyrs' Brigades. He and another man were then led to al-Manara Square, where they were shot at point-blank range. One of the bodies was later hanged by the legs from a monument. Since the brutal killing, which was witnessed by several hundred people, Abdo's family has been campaigning to clear his name. The family contacted representatives of all the PLO factions in Ramallah and senior members of the security forces, asking for details about any charges brought against him. No charges could be found. PA officials gave the Abdos a number of documents exonerating their son. Some of them were signed by Arafat himself. The family was told that Ibrahim Abdo will now be considered a shaheed, implying that he was a victim of the Israeli occupation. This is not the first time that a Palestinian killed on suspicion of collaboration has later been found to be innocent. There are no statistics about the number, and no court records with files on those arrested. Abdo's murderers will never be implicated, as the Aqsa Martyr's Brigades are run by Arafat himself.

China Presdent Zemin and President Bush To Meet

Aug. 29….(Stratfor)
Chinese President Jiang Zemin and U.S. President George W. Bush will meet in October. Relations between the two plummeted after the April 2001 collision of a Chinese fighter with a U.S. surveillance aircraft near the southeastern Chinese coastline. China is vociferous in its intent to take the island nation of Taiwan, and the US has historically said that it will help defense Taiwan against any such action. China is also adeptly opposed to any US attempts to topple Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. The U.S. military presence in Central Asia, as well as the broader war on terror being waged by the U.S. military has affected US-China relations since last September 11th.

US-Iraq Could Happen in November?

Aug. 29….(World tribune)
Reports are circulating that the United States has already told Israel that it will attack Iraq before the end of November. There are reports that a senior U.S. military visited Israel earlier this week and toured facilities where the U.S. military has pre-positioned equipment and weapons for an emergency in the Middle East. The sources quoted a visiting U.S. general to Israel who heads army logistics as saying that Washington intends to strike the regime of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein by late November. In joint military discussions earlier this summer, Pentagon officials said Iraq would be only the first stop in the U.S. war on terror. After that there could well be massive U.S. pressure brought upon Syria and Iran to halt weapons of mass destruction programs and Syria's occupation of Lebanon."

The Saudi Kingdom's Oil

Aug. 29….(Guardian)
Fear over war with Iraq has sent oil prices higher, but Saudi Arabia and its oil dominance may well determine whether a U.S. attack on Iraq will have worldwide impact on energy markets. That's another reason the Bush administration has been soothing relations with the Saudi Kingdom, including the unusual visit by Saudi Arabia's ambassador, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, to President Bush's ranch in Texas this week. The price of benchmark West Texas crude soared past $30 a barrel last week as Vice President Dick Cheney forcefully outlined the Bush Administration's case for ousting the Iraqi leader. Crude barrel prices have risen about 60% since the beginning of the year. Despite the run-up in oil price, the increase has yet to be felt by consumers. Gasoline prices, despite strong demand, have increased only slightly, averaging $1.40 a gallon this week, 8.5 cents cheaper than a year ago, said the Energy Department's Energy Information Administration. Saudi Arabia is the world's biggest oil producer. Saudi officials have tried to reassure the markets that despite their opposition to a U.S. attack on Iraq, they remain prepared to replace any lost Iraqi oil supplies and take action to stabilize oil markets. But internal feuds and religious influences in the Saudi kingdom could change that scenario over night. During the 1990-91 Gulf War oil prices spiked to $41 a barrel, but receded when it became clear Saudi fields were not threatened. Also, in 1991 Saudi Arabia was in full support of the war on Iraq. This time around though, Saudi Arabia is hostile to the US interests in the region.

UN Opposes Attacking Iraq

Aug. 29….(Financial Times)
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Anan sais today that the UN does not back a US military attack on Iraq. Calling for a diplomatic solution to get weapons inspectors back into Iraq, Mr Annan said: "The UN is not agitating for military action." Meanwhile, China, a key member of the UN Security Council, made clear its opposition to any US war against Iraq on Wednesday following meetings in Beijing with the Iraqi foreign minister. Tang Jiaxuan, China's foreign minister, reiterated that the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Iraq should be respected. China relies heavily upon Middle East oil. India also expressed strong opposition to the projected US military action against Iraq. Privately, Indian officials are also resentful of what they see as a gaping contrast between Washington's support for the military regime of General Pervez Musharraf in Pakistan and its hostility to Iraq's military regime. Pakistan, unlike Iraq, has a proven stockpile of nuclear weapons with which Islamabad has publicly threatened India on several occasions, they note. In Japan, a key financier of the 1991 Gulf war, Taku Yamasaki, secretary-general of the ruling Liberal Democratic party, said that Tokyo should oppose any unilateral US decision to attack Iraq.

U.S. Warns Iran Against Harboring Al Qaeda

Aug. 29….(Reuters)
The United States on Wednesday warned Iran against harboring terrorists, after Tehran rejected a U.S. newspaper report that it had given safe haven to two deputies of Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda network. The Washington Post, quoting unidentified Arab intelligence sources, reported that two al Qaeda deputies were in Iran along with dozens of al Qaeda fighters and were said to be plotting new attacks. The Post reported on evidence it has of Al Qaeda officials Saif al-Adel and Mahfouz Ould Walid being in Iran near the Afghan border training hundreds of terrorists. President Bush has branded Iran part of an "axis of evil," along with Iraq and North Korea..

FOJ Note: FOJ reported in December 2001 that Iran was helping to transport hundreds of Al Qaeda terrorists through Iran into Saudi Arabia and eastward into Syria-Lebanon. Last September, President Bush in his speech to the US Congress declared war on terrorism and those states that harbor, or give safe haven to terrorists. He pointedly warned the Axis of Evil trio to cease involvement in international terrorism.

Temple Mount Bulge Could be Exlosive

Aug. 29….(Washington Times)
A bulge in the wall of Jerusalem's Temple Mount, a site holy to both Jews and Muslims, has introduced a new and potentially explosive element into the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation. Muslim religious authorities deny that there is any danger of collapse and reject the Israeli warnings as a politically motivated attempt to establish Israel's authority over the Mount. Mr. Husseini warned of dire consequences throughout the region if Israel attempted to undermine Islamic authority on the Temple Mount. "The Israeli side is trying to make from this problem a very dangerous political issue," he said. "They want to gain a foothold on the mount." UNESCO, the U.N. educational and cultural agency, has offered to examine the bulge, but thus far the ruling Waqf, which has been allowed to control the temple site since Israel took control in 1967, has steadfastly refused any assistance. While Israel claims sovereignty over the Mount since capturing it in the 1967 Mideast war, it has left de facto control to the Wakf. Any attempt by Israel to assert its authority there is bound to draw strong reaction throughout the Arab and Muslim world. The Temple Mount is a large esplanade originally built by King Solomon on a hilltop 3,000 years ago to house the first Jewish temple. King Herod expanded the esplanade 1,000 years later and rebuilt the temple. It was this temple and esplanade that Jesus visited. Within a century, the temple was destroyed by the Romans. Six centuries later, the Arabs conquered Jerusalem and built on the Mount the Al Aqsa Mosque. The Western Wall, a retaining wall of the temple compound, is just around the corner but is not affected by the bulge. With Jews kept off the hilltop by Muslim restrictions and rabbinical bans, the Western Wall, believed to be the last remnant of the Second Temple destroyed by Roman conquerors, is the holiest place where Jews can pray. But Jews long for the day when they can once again have a presence on top of the Temple Mount! Israeli Prime Minister Sharon is expected to conduct a meeting on the potential problem of the bulge this week. If the Israeli authorities declare the area to be unsafe, they could close the underground area to the public, a move that would almost certainly be met by charges that it is restricting religious freedom, or something even worse, especially in light of an impending US attack on Iraq. Non-Muslims have been barred from the Temple Mount for security reasons since the Palestinian uprising broke out in September 2000.

Catholics and Baptists Disagree on Missions to Jews

Aug. 28….(Catholic News)
An Aug. 12 Catholic-Jewish statement repudiating "campaigns that target Jews for conversion to Christianity" has drawn controversy, including sharp criticisms in some Catholic quarters and a charge of Catholic anti-Semitism by a top Southern Baptist official. The statement, "Reflections on Covenant and Mission," was issued by Catholic and Jewish participants in a national dialogue co-sponsored by the National Council of Synagogues and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee on Ecumenical and Inter-religious Affairs. Jim Sibley, coordinator of Jewish ministries for the Southern Baptist Convention, interpreted the document's rejection of "campaigns that target Jews for conversion" as having effectively "targeted the Jews for exclusion from Gospel proclamation." "There can be no more extreme form of anti-Semitism" than that, he said. Abraham H. Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League said, “At a time when other faiths are striving for unity and interfaith civility, the leadership of the Southern Baptist ministry has once again shown arrogance and contempt for other religions." "Coming from a ministry (Southern Baptist) with a track record of denigrating other religions and (Islam) engaging in aggressive campaigns aimed at converting Jews, this (Sibley) statement is the height of hypocrisy." The Catholic Church report regards the saving act of Christ as central to the process of human salvation for all, but it also acknowledges that Jews already dwell in a saving covenant with God." Catholic Crisis Magazine editor Deal Hudson asks, "If we're saved only through Jesus, "how can we say that God's covenant with the Jews is 'a saving covenant'? The Catholic Church believes that Judaism is the faithful response of the Jewish people to God's irrevocable covenant, and is salvific for them, because God is faithful to his promises." These differences between Catholic and Baptist views on evangelization to the Jews are pivotal. In 1996 the Southern Baptist Convention adopted a resolution on Jewish evangelism which criticized those who "deny that Jewish people need to come to their Messiah, Jesus, to be saved" and resolved to "direct our energies and resources toward the proclamation of the Gospel to the Jewish people."

FOJ Note: Notice that the Catholic debate argument states, “if we're saved only through Jesus”. The very statement suggesting “if” Jesus is the only way to salvation denotes that the Catholic Church teaches the accommodation of “other” ways to gain salvation. Advocating that Jesus is not the “only” way is teaching that is contrary to Divine Revelation, and suggests that as a church, we are moving with haste into the times of the Apostasy, and also opens the doorway by which Israel can find common ground with the Antichrist.

Islam Waging War on Christianity?

Aug. 28….(FOJ)
The fact that America's Arab allies often express their hatred for Israel and constantly tell us that we must force Israel to give away land if we want peace suggests that only the Jews are the impediment to peace. Prayers for waging holy war against Israel and America are broadcast loudly in most of the Islamic mosques every Friday, even in the so-called moderate Arab countries ranging from Egypt to Saudi Arabia. But just in case you thought that America's ostensible Arab partners in the war on terror reserved their nastiest vitriol exclusively for the Children of Israel, consider some of the following recent observations they have made about Christians.

Consider the regular Prayers of the Imam in Grand Mosque in Yemen: "O Allah, destroy the Jews and their supporters and the Christians and their supporters and followers. O Allah, destroy the ground under their feet, instill fear in their hearts, and freeze the blood in their veins."

Routine is this prayer sermon broadcast live on official Qatari TV from the Omar Bin-Khattab Mosque in Doha, the Imam denounced what he termed the "vile Christians" and pleaded with Allah to annihilate them: "O Allah, destroy the usurper Jews and the vile Christians… O Allah, pour out Your anger on them. O Allah, destroy them." (These same type of prayers are prayed every week in the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem too!)

The two most hated groups of people on the earth today are Jews and Christians. Make no mistake about it, the September 11th attacks on America were perpetrated upon our nation because of the Christian support for Israel that is still very strong here. Islamic terrorists did not attack Europe, Russia, or China because those nations could care less about Israel.

Rumsfeld: We Will Go-it-Alone!

Aug. 28….(World Watch)
The Bush Administration has begun making its case against Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. The Vice president and Defense Secretary describe Hussein as a menace who cannot be appeased and suggest that the US may just go it alone to remove Saddam. “It's less important to have unanimity than it is making the right decision and doing the right thing, even though at the outset it may seem lonesome," Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said today. Rumsfeld predicted that most U.S. friends and allies would support American U.S. military action against Iraq if that is what Bush decides is required to deal with the threat of being attacked with weapons of mass destruction. So far no allies have voiced any support, and those in the Arab region have expressed outright anger at the prospect.

Arab League Denies the Holocaust

Aug. 28….(Jerusalem Post)
The Arab League is slated to participate in a symposium in Abu Dhabi, which organizers say will expose Israeli "lies and exaggerations about the Holocaust. The symposium being held Thursday is organized by the Zayed Center for Coordination. Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa, and former Egyptian foreign minister, has sent a personal representative to say that Israel has indulged in spreading lies and exaggerations about the Holocaust in order to squeeze out huge funds from European countries through blackmail." Labeling the Holocaust a "false fable," the center said that, "The symposium aims at disclosing many historical, political fallacies promoted by Israel and Zionism through different means especially the spread of lies and exaggerations regarding the so-called Holocaust." The Arab League also asserted that it was "Jewish activities" which had "agitated European hatred against Jews, and caused the backlash of the Holocaust."

FOJ Note: Sound familiar? The Muslim world said the September 11th war attacks were America's own fault because of our twisted foreign policy favoring Israel. Six million Jews were systematically murdered by Adolph Hitler during WWII, and Palestinian Mufti Haj al-amin Husseini encouraged Hitler to extend the Holocaust into the Middle East. Mufti Haj al-amin Husseini tutored a protégé understudy to enact the Arab Final Solution…his name is Yasser Arafat!

Opposing Terrorism in PA is Unhealthy

Aug. 28….(FOJ)
Palestinian policemen escort suspected collaborator Akram al-Zatma from his prison cell to meet with members of the press, in Gaza August 28, 2002. Al-Zatma said in a press conference that he was recruited by Israeli intelligence two years ago and ordered to spy on Hamas military chief Salah Shehada. PLO Al Aqsa Brigade execution squads have been rounding up suspected collaborators with Israel and by enforcing means of torture on them extracting video-taped confessions to be aired on PLO television. Earlier this week the PLO executed a mother of seven kids suspected of collaboration. My question is: where was the trial? What defense are they provided? Why is there no venue for Palestinian voices of ctiticism?

China Cited for Mid-East Proliferation

Aug. 27….(Middle East News)
Despite pledges to the United States, China continues to serve as a leading source of missile-related technology to the Middle East. A report by the U.S.-China Security Review Commission asserts that China has failed to honor pledges to Washington over the last two years to end the export of missile and weapons of mass destruction technology to such countries as Iran, Libya and Syria. The commission, established by Congress last year, said Beijing's missile exports are now posing a serious security threat to the United States. China has exported dual-use items that contribute to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems," the commission report said. "China is a leading international source of missile-related technologies. Its proliferation activities with terrorist-sponsoring and other states, present serious problems for U.S. national security interests, particularly in the Middle East and Asia." U.S. analysts indicated that China's proliferation policy has been directed from the top by Beijing's Foreign Ministry.

Comparing Israel's Terror Casulaties

Aug. 27….(FOJ)
The casualty list for Israeli's killed by Palestinian terrorists compared to the population of the United States reveals the following scenario: During the months of the Palestinian uprising and the ensuing terrorism against innocent citizens, 610 Israeli's have been killed. Considering that 610 represents about 1.2% of the population of Israel, then if the Palestinian styled terrorism was perpetrated upon America with its 288,000,000 population, the result would have be equal to 35,136 killed, and over 250,000 injured. When compared to the September 11th attacks on America by terrorists which killed about 3,000 Americans, you can readily see that Israel has exhausted all reason of patience with terrorists.

Egypt Warns Against Attack on Iraq

Aug. 27….
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, supposedly a top U.S. ally came out strongly against any American military action, saying it would throw the Middle East into chaos. Mubarak's tough words come a day after Vice President Cheney made the toughest comments yet by the Bush administration to build a case for action to topple Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. Mubarak warned that a U.S. attack would enflame the Arab public, especially at a time when violence is raging between Israel and the Palestinians. Many Arabs accuse the United States of bias toward Israel in the conflict. Mubarak said that if Washington strikes at the Iraqi people because of one or two individuals and leave the Palestinian issue unsolved, not a single Arab ruler will support you nor will he be able to curb the rising of popular sentiments in their countries." Meanwhile Iraq is drumming up support for its cause. Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri is in China to seek support, while Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz is engaged in a world tour to seek support of Iraq's offer to allow UN weapons inspectors back into Iraq. Iraq succeeded Tuesday in getting the U.S. threats put onto the agenda of a Sept. 4-5 meeting of Arab League foreign ministers. The agenda was the subject of fierce debate Tuesday at the Arab League, with many members pressing for the meeting to urge Iraq to accept a resumption of inspections.

Bush and Saudi Prince Bandar to Meet

Aug. 27….(Stratfor)
President Bush and Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar bin Sultan plan to have lunch together at Bush's Crawford, Texas, ranch Tuesday in what both U.S. and Saudi officials call a chance for both countries to clear the air and reconcile their differences. The meeting will focus on the war on terrorism and "steps to bring about peace in the Middle East. Sources familiar with the talks said a number of controversial issues will likely surface. The United States has grown wary of its Middle Eastern ally due to support within the kingdom for al-Qaida and the government's opposition to the U.S. war against Iraq. The US is also greatly concerned about money being sent to Al Qaeda from Saudi Arabia. The prince is expected to make clear that the Saudi leadership does not sponsor nor support terrorism. He will argue that Islam requires Muslims to give to charities, and they do, but that not a penny from Saudi leadership intentionally goes to al Qaeda or other terrorists. Bandar also will make the case that domestic opinion in Saudi Arabia will be hard to win over as long as there are continuous atrocities against the Palestinians in the region. (a reference to Israel and America's support for Israel)

One of the Signs of the Times

Aug. 26….(FOJ)
A recent Zogby poll of U.S. high school seniors found that nearly two-thirds surveyed said homosexual marriages should be legal and 68 percent said homosexual couples should be allowed to adopt children. Within a few short years a major dividing line has become evident even within the church. Many of today's denominations are openly endorsing homosexuality and lesbianism. Many are even ordaining homosexual/lesbians as ministers. If God's people and especially his church do not take a clear and uncompromising stand against this particular sin, the result will be that the next generation will be denied the freedom to live and practice the true Christian faith. As society and the family disintegrate, the Bible and true Christianity will become relegated to the closet, where this abominable sin used to hide. Even the traditional family will become more and more extinct and our Christian republic will become a mere remnant of history.

Leviticus 18:22 (Thou shalt not lie with mankind, (homosexual) as with womankind: it is abomination.)

Romans 1:26-27 (For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women (lesbianism) did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, (homosexuals) leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.) God loves all sinners, but he hates sin. Repentance is available to all that will repent, but God will not tolerate this “national sin”!

Cheney Calls for Preemptive Strike Against Iraq

Aug. 26….(Reuters)
Vice President Dick Cheney publicly called today for a liberated Iraq, saying right now, not later is the best time for a preemptive strike against President Saddam Hussein. "As former Secretary of State (Henry) Kissinger recently stated, the imminence of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the huge dangers it involves, the rejection of a viable inspection system and the demonstrated hostility of Saddam Hussein combine to produce an imperative for preemptive action," he told a veterans group. "I am familiar with the arguments against taking action in the case of Saddam Hussein. Some concede that Saddam is evil, power hungry and a menace, but that until he crosses the threshold of actually possessing nuclear weapons we should rule out any preemptive action," Cheney said. "That logic seems to me to be deeply flawed. As President Bush has said, time is not on our side. Deliverable weapons of mass destruction in the hands of a terror network, or a murderous dictator, or the two working together, constitutes as grave a threat as can be imagined. The risk of inaction are far greater than the risk of action," he added.

Syria's Assad Courting Saudi Arabia

Aug. 26….(FOJ)
Syrian President Bashar Assad has undertaken a lightning visit to Saudi Arabia today as both countries find themselves at odds with Washington over its anti-terror war and a possible strike on Iraq. Assad is seeking to coordinate a united front with Saudi Arabia, which like Syria has come under increasing pressure from the United States over the war on "terrorism." The US Pentagon this month identified Riyadh as an Islamist hotbed and looming enemy in the war on terror, while Syria's support for Hezbollah and militant Palestinian groups has strained relations with the United States. Syria's state press, which has characterized a potential U.S. strike on Iraq as an attempt to strengthen Israel's hand, linked the Iraq issue to U.S. pressure on its oil-rich Gulf Saudi ally. Syrian Information Minister Adnan Omran said that the US threats against Iraq targeted the entire Arab world.

FOJ Note: Last September, President Bush stated in his war-on-terrorism speech before the US Congress, that America would wage war on terrorists and those states which also “harbor” terrorists. FOJ reported at the time that President Bush would eventually find that the number and category of “states that harbor terrorists,” would leave him with virtually no allies in the Middle East. Now, at long last, US foreign policy advisors are worried about the “Go-it-Alone” reality that America is facing in pursuing terror.

Egypt Abandoning US Friendship?

Aug. 26….(FOJ)
Saudi Arabia and Egypt were once thought of as being the bulwark of American support in the Middle East. But as America seeks support from its two friends against Iraq, America is finding that both Saudi Arabia and Egypt are abandoning their US alliances. Saudi Arabia says it will not allow any U.S. presence on its soil. Now Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's closest political adviser is saying that Cairo will deny passage through the Suez Canal to any American warships headed to the Persian Gulf to assist in an assault against Iraq. "Egypt will not allow American ships to pass through the Suez Canal in order to strike Iraq," Dr. Osama Al-Baz said in an exclusive interview with the weekly opposition newspaper Al-Geel. He also warned the U.S. of the dangers that military action against Iraq would pose for the entire region. Al Baz's comments are said to stem from the Bush administration's decision last week to withhold further economic aid to Cairo in retaliation for Egypt's prosecution of democracy proponents in Egypt.

Jews Concerned About Keeping Israel Jewish

Aug. 26….(Ha Aretz)
Israel's leading Jewish authorities, Sephardi Chief Rabbi Eliyahu Bakshi-Doron and his Ashkenazi counterpart Yisrael Meir Lau called today for an urgent revision to be made to the Law of Return. The two Rabbi's, speaking at the end of the annual convention of rabbis in Jerusalem, warned that "seventy percent of the new immigrants to Israel are professed non-Jews, with no connection to Judaism. We cannot continue to bring entire Christian families to Israel." From January 2002 until July 2002, 5,508 of some 9,367 immigrants from the former Soviet Union were non-Jews. Between 1989 until 2002, 859,502 immigrants arrived from the former Soviet Union of which 619,820 were Jewish and 239,682 were not. Interior Minister Eli Yishai said that the figures were a serious matter and testified to the need for an immediate change to the Law of Return. Yishai said that if the law was not changed, "by the end of the year 2010 the State of Israel will lose its Jewish identity." The Law of Return, passed in 1950, states that "every Jew has the right to come to this Israel as an oleh, or Aliya immigrant. Under the Law of Return, the spouses of Jews, their children and their grandchildren are all entitled to immigrate to Israel, receive citizenship and various benefits, even if they are not considered Jews under Jewish law.

Female Collaborator Tortured, Killed by PLO

Aug. 26….(Ha Aretz)
The son of the first known Palestinian woman to be executed as an Israeli collaborator Sunday said gunmen tortured him until he invented a story about his mother's involvement in a militant's death. Ikhlas Khouli, a 35-year-old mother of seven, was shot dead Saturday after being seized from her home in the West Bank city of Tul Karm. Bakir Khouli, 17, lifted up his T-shirt at his one-room house in Tul Karm on Sunday to reveal black and blue marks he said were made by electrical wires shortly before his mother was killed. "They accused me of helping Israeli intelligence," he told the Associated Press. "When they started beating me with this wire, I confessed and invented a story." Dozens of suspected Palestinian collaborators have been killed since the beginning of a Palestinian uprising in September 2000, but Khouli was the first woman reported executed. A member of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, which is linked to the Fatah movement of Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat, said the militia seized Khouli from her house Friday and took her to a deserted building where they videotaped her confessing that she had spied for Israel. On Saturday, she was executed as a lesson to others who would consider collaborating with Israel, he said on condition of anonymity. FOJ Note: It is nice to see those democratic reforms taking hold that Arafat is supposedly implementing.

China Dumping Baby Girls

Aug. 26….(ABC)
In a garbage dumps on the outskirts of Beijing, scavengers occasionally uncover the unthinkable, newborn baby girls, abandoned and left to die. Historically, Chinese culture has valued male children over females, especially in rural areas, where peasants want boys to help in the fields. Today, as ultrasound machines have become readily available, China has seen an epidemic of sex-selection abortions, so many, that the ratio of males to females in parts of China has been thrown wildly out of kilter. For every 100 girls born here, there used to be about 105 boys. Now, roughly 120 boys are born for every 100 girls. It's an imbalance that some believe will have dire consequences for the future. abc

45,000 Israeli Arabs March for Al Aqsa Mosque

Aug. 26….(Ha Aretz)
The Al Aqsa mosque is ours and it is in danger of being lost," Sheikh Ra'ad Salah, the head of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement, declared before some 45,000 Israeli Arabs who turned up at Jerusalem's Al Aqsa mosque on Saturday for a festival organized by the movement. Salah is one of three Israeli Arab leaders who is being investigated by the Or Commission, which is investigating the Arab riots of October 2000. Salah is suspected of encouraging Palestinians to resort to the use of violence as a way inciting the Al Aqsa Intifada. The festival was the largest such event organized by the northern branch of the Islamic Movement since November 2001, when another "Al Aqsa is in danger" rally was held.


PA Government Workers Ordered to March for Iraq

Aug. 23….(Middle East News)
The Palestinian Authority has helped organize demonstrations in support of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Palestinian sources said PA officials have joined rallies in several cities in the Gaza Strip backing Saddam against a U.S.-led attack on Baghdad. The sources said PA officials have ordered employees of several government agencies to participate in the demonstrations. The Palestinian rallies have included the burning of flags of Israel and the United States and shooting, Middle East Newsline reported. Demonstrators have chanted appeals for Saddam to launch missile attacks against Israel. The demonstrations have also included posters of Saddam and PA Chairman Yasser Arafat. Arafat backed Saddam in the 1991 Gulf war. Iraq has sent more than $30 million to finance the Palestinian insurgency war against Israel. FOJ Note: What makes this story so interesting is the fact that Saddam Hussein this week had Abu Nidal assassinated as a reminder to fellow terror associates (Arafat) what happens to them if they don't support Saddam, and enter into peace-onfo-sharing discussions with Washington. So, Arafat is just making sure Saddam sees the show! ( See the Abu Nidal Assassinated by article for August 22 )

Russia Flirting with “Axis of Evil”?

Aug. 23….(FOJ)
Iran, Iraq and North Korea are three nations collectively known in the parlance of the Bush administration as the “axis of evil.” But that's not the way they see it in Russia, where the three countries have been getting something of the red-carpet treatment over the last several weeks. North Korea's Kim Jong Il is the latest recipient of a warm Russian welcome. The normally reclusive leader is in the midst of a tour by train of Russia's Far East. The visit, Kim's second to Russia in as many years is being billed as an effort to strengthen economic ties. On Friday, Kim topped off his visit by meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok. A visit this week by Iran's deputy foreign minister and the announcement of a major economic deal with Iraq have also served to underscore the Kremlin's ties with Bush's “axis of evil.” Russia's dealings with North Korea, Iraq and Iran are a point of friction between Moscow and Washington. Russia has acknowledged plans for a $40 billion economic cooperation agreement with Iraq and announced a deal to build five nuclear reactors in Iran. While debate heats up in Washington over Bush's call for Saddam's ouster, the prospect of American-led military intervention in Iraq remains a non-starter in Russia. Russian President Putin will definitely not support an American military operation against Iraq, because he will not risk Russia's relationship with the Muslim world!

Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin embrace during a summit of Caspian Sea leaders in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan recently. Russia is seeking Arab assistance in tapping the Caspian Sea oil reserves. Russia is intent on improving its economic clout, and sees its Iran-Iraq alliance as being instrumental to its welfare, and also to its gepolitical strategy in the Middle East region.

Russia Accuses Israel of Anti-Iran Bias

Aug. 23….(Tass)
Russia has accused Israel of dictating an "un-constructive" US attitude with regard to Moscow's nuclear cooperation program with Iran. America has no direct interest in preventing Russo-Iranian nuclear cooperation, it is really Israel which is expressing its grievances against Tehran through the mouthpiece of the United States. However US President George W. Bush has named Iran, alongside Iraq and North Korea, as part of an "axis of evil" which he claims is seeking to develop weapons of mass destruction.

FOJ Note: Russia is assisting Iran in the development of weapons of mass destruction, especially in the area of nuclear weapons. Iran will be allied with Russia when Russia moves against Israel during the Time of Jacob's Trouble. (Iran has recently expressed its intent to nuke Israel)

Israel Studies Defensible Borders Options

Aug. 23….(Israel News)
Israel's National Security Council has recommended that the country's borders with a Palestinian entity be determined quickly with or without Palestinian input to improve the security situation. During 23 months of fighting with the Palestinians, Israel has sealed off the West Bank and Gaza Strip. But Palestinian militants have been able to infiltrate into the country to carry out suicide bombings and shooting attacks. The IDF report called for the establishment of a defensible border as soon as possible. Israel has begun building a fence along parts of the line separating Israel and the West Bank. Security concerns have dictated the fence's positioning, and it's not clear if it will constitute a final border. The idea of physically separating the two populations through unilateral Israeli action has gained credence in Israel in the wake of failed peace talks. Israel has no way of completely stopping terror without some kind of separation, and in lieu of potential Iraqi missile attacks, the Palestinians could easily infiltrate Israel and create havoc in a coordinated effort with Iraq, Hamas, Hezbollah, etc.

US-made Patriot anti-missile batteries are tested in the Negev Desert, in what the Israeli Air Force says is part of a few days exercise to check the system´s readiness. Although Israel says the measure has nothing to do with the tension between the United States and Iraq, it most certainly is designed for that eventuality, or one very much like it from perhaps another country.

ACLU loses 10 Commandments Battle in Kentucky

Aug. 23….(World Net)
A federal court in Lexington, Ky., has ruled that the Ten Commandments can remain on display in the Mercer County courthouse, rejecting an attempt by the American Civil Liberties Union to have them removed. "This is a major victory for the people of Mercer County and for all Americans who don't buy into the ACLU's extreme misrepresentation of our Constitution," said Francis J. Manion, senior counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice which argued the case for the county. The ACLU filed suit to have the Ten Commandments removed from a display including other historical and legal texts, but U.S. District Judge Karl Forrester denied the legal group's motion for a preliminary injunction yesterday. "The First Amendment was never intended to remove all mention of God or religion from the public square," said Manion. "The Supreme Court and many other courts have long recognized the foundational role of the Ten Commandments in the development of our legal system."

FOJ Note: Hallelujah! Focus on Jerusalem is located in Mercer County, Kentucky

Israeli's Oppose Oslo Process

Aug. 23….(Arutz)
The Israeli public continues its wide, rightward turn. A survey conducted by pollster Dr. Mina Tzemach for Yediot Acharonot this week shows that 67% of the public feels that the Oslo Agreements were harmful to the country. A similar proportion negates the Clinton framework and does not believe that any Palestinian leader can be trusted, no matter who he is. If the elections were held today, the poll shows, Sharon would receive 58% of the votes running against Defense Minister Ben-Eliezer.

FOJ Note: The Oslo Peace Process has in effect allowed the Palestinian Trojan Horse to gain entry into Israel proper, and also to discredit Israeli rights to the Promised Land.

Israel Braces for Muslim March on Temple

Aug. 23….(Arutz)
Israel is bracing for a march organized by the northern chapter of the Islamic Movement. The gathering of 50,000 Muslims is led by Sheikh Salah, leader of the Islamic Movement, and his efforts is pointed toward increasing Muslim perspectives on the Temple Mount. Islamic intentions on the Temple Mount are especially painful for some Jews. "To hear a Moslem leader talk about 'Temple Mount awareness' is like a dagger to my heart," says Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute in Jerusalem. Rabbi Richman told Arutz-7's Yosef Zalmanson today that the Moslem efforts towards this holy site "substantiate what we've always known, that everything that's going on [the war, etc.] centers around the Temple Mount - our heart and soul. It's a cliche already, but everyone knows that whoever controls the Temple Mount controls the whole land! Rabbi Richman continued to say, “I have no problem with Islam; they have been quite open about their demands. But where is our Temple Mount awareness? Why are many of our rabbis not raising this issue? When we made an issue about the destruction the Moslems were causing on the Mount, people said to me, 'Why do you care about sticks and stones? Soon, we must see our Temple rebuilt! Don't we as Jews care about what is happening to God's Honor and God's Home?"

Christ the Only Way for both Jews and Gentiles

(A debate on Salvation for Jews)
Aug.23….(Baptist Press News)
Christians have a responsibility to proclaim the Gospel to all people, including Jews, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr. said during a spirited debate on MSNBC's "Donahue" on Aug. 20. Mohler joined a Messianic Jew, a rabbi and host Phil Donahue in debating the issue of Jewish evangelism, a subject that came to the national forefront when the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a statement rejecting the need for Jewish people to embrace Jesus as the Messiah. Donahue, a Roman Catholic, and Rabbi Shmuley Boteach hotly contested any contention that Jews should be evangelized. Donahue called such thinking "intolerant" and "arrogant," while Boteach went one step further in calling Mohler a "spiritual Neanderthal." Donahue began the show by joking that "all we have to do is convince the Southern Baptists" to follow the Catholics' lead. In fact, the first few minutes were a mini-debate between Donahue and Mohler. Donahue began by asking Mohler if the Southern Baptist Convention's 16 million members believe that Jews can go to heaven. "Southern Baptists, along with other Christians, believe that all persons can go to heaven who come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ." Donahue then asked, "So a good Jew is not going to heaven?" "All persons are sinners in need of a savior," Mohler responded. "Jesus Christ is the sole mediator. The gospel, we are told by the apostle Paul, comes first to the Jews and then to gentiles. Salvation is found in his name and in his name alone through faith in Christ, and [through] that faith alone." Boteach, a radio host and author of "Judaism for Everyone," strongly disagreed with both Mohler and Brown. "Rev. Mohler, however intelligent of a scholar he may be, he is a spiritual Neanderthal with repulsive, revolting views," Boteach said. "This is the modern equivalent of spiritual terrorism. You would think that we would have progressed to some sort of racial harmony and, especially after Sept. 11." Boteach later asserted that, "If Jesus were alive today I think he would take Rev. Mohler and Dr. Brown to court for character assassination. They took the Prince of Peace and made him into the torturer-in-chief." Donahue took Mohler to task again, saying that he has made God into an "egomaniac" who tells people, "You better pray to me or I'll show you what trouble really is." Mohler, though, responded by saying his views are founded in both the Old and New Testaments. "God declared this to Moses in the covenant at Sinai," Mohler said. "He spoke very much about the fact that there was an order to have no gods before him. Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of that law." Donahue asserted that Mohler's views were arrogant, arguing that the Crusades began with similar beliefs. But Mohler said he has a duty to proclaim the gospel message. "It would be arrogant if this was our message," Mohler answered. "But if that is what the Son of God said himself, if that is the truth, then it would be hateful and it would be intolerant not to tell you what we believe to be the truth. I cannot compel any person to believe in Christ, but I do have the responsibility with gladness and joy to share the good news of the gospel, knowing that all who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved whether Jew or gentile." Boteach, obviously upset at Mohler's answer, then asked a series of questions. "Rev. Mohler, are you allowed to think?" Boteach asked. "Because you sound like a broken record. You have been repeating this mantra since the show started. Does your religion allow for independent thought? Are you allowed to have a heart? Can you feel for people? Do you know that Jews have been turned into lampshades and bars of soap and ashes? You are a liability to Christianity." However, Mohler said that his beliefs are the bedrock of orthodox Christianity and that the Jewish people have a special place in God's plan. "I am fully aware that neither the Roman Catholic bishops nor the leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention have any power to send any soul to heaven or to hell," he said to Boteach. "The question comes down to what the gospel really is. What you assaulted in your language there is classical Christianity as taught by the apostles and handed down by the church. "I believe that God has a distinctive purpose for the Jewish people and that Christians are called to be friends to all, and especially to the Jewish people with a sense of indebtedness. At the same time, we are to bear witness to the gospel, believing that God is going to do a remarkable thing in bringing many, many Jewish persons to faith in Christ."

FOJ Note: Dr. Mohler is absolutely correct in his debate argument. There is only one way to be saved!

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. The Roman Catholic position gladly sells the Jewish people into Hell, and works in collusion with the world ecumenical movement to establish the theological logistics of the peace of the Antichrist and the religion of the False Prophet! Rome seeks to assert that there is more than one way to gain salvation, and the Jews believe they have a pathway to salvation other than through Jesus!

Saudi Arabia Accused of Terror Financing

Aug. 22….(AP)
A Saudi corporation and charities denied accusations in a U.S. lawsuit that they helped finance the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the US, with one Arab banker warning that the legal action could jeopardize Arab investments in the United States. The Al Rajhi Banking and Investment Corporation and the Muslim World League, both of which are listed in the $1 trillion lawsuit filed by relatives of Sept. 11th victims, slammed the action as "part of a Zionist conspiracy against Saudi economy and Islam." Al Rajhi said the suit could result in the withdrawal of Arab investments in the United States and "negatively affect the U.S. and western economies." The 15-count federal lawsuit filed on Aug. 15 in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia, seeks to cripple those it contends financed the Sept. 11th plot, including the Sudanese government, some members of the Saudi royal family, banks and charities. The suit also seeks to provide vengeance for the victims' families. Fifteen of the 19 hijackers on Sept. 11 were Saudi nationals. Those listed include Prince Mohammed al-Faisal, former intelligence chief Prince Turki al-Faisal, Saudi Defense Minister Prince Sultan, Khalid bin Salim bin Mahfouz of the National Commercial Bank and the Faisal Islamic Bank. The lawsuit also listed several charities, including the Muslim World League, the International Islamic Relief Organization and Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation.

US Alarmed by Growing Russia-China Pact

Aug. 22….(Moscow Times)
Since U.S. President George W. Bush came to power last year, the U.S. defense establishment has taken an increasingly alarmist approach to China's burgeoning defense procurement program, in which Russia, as its main supplier, is playing the leading role. Washington is growing increasingly concerned over Beijing's buildup, and the role that Russia is playing in that buildup. The U.S.-China Security Review Commission says that despite an overwhelming U.S. military and technological superiority, China is working towards an eventual confrontation with the US. China's buildup is aimed at excluding the United States from Asia and establishing the ability to threaten and coerce neighboring states, ranging from Mongolia to Japan to India. The US sees China as a major source of advanced weapons to terrorist-sponsoring states. The arms deals between Russia and China have been classified as secret. China is already known to have the second largest military budget in the world, next to the US. China is seeking to displace the US as the dominant power in Southeast Asia, and to forcibly take the island nation of Taiwan. This year alone, China has ordered two new Project 956EM Sovremenny destroyers for $1.4 billion, eight Kilo submarines for $1.5 billion and S-300F naval air defense systems for $200 million dollars, and 30 Su-30MK2 fighters equipped with X-31A anti-ship missiles. And just this week, Russia delivered the first 10 of 40 Sukhoi Su-30MKK fighters China ordered last year. While the Clinton administration chose not to make a public issue of Russian military sales to China, there are some in the Bush administration, especially in the Pentagon, who now want to engage Moscow on the larger costs to Russian security and Asian stability of its military sales to China.

Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov and his Chinese counterpart Zhu Rongji are shown attending a military cooperation signing ceremony in Beijing. FOJ Note: The Kings of the East are preparing themselves for their prophesied rise and infiltration into the Middle East Conflict.

Libya Gets Ballistic Missiles in Deal with Iran

Aug. 22….(World Tribune)
Libya has signed a $13.5 billion weapons deal with Iran for ballistic missiles with chemical warheads and the training to deploy and operate them. Iran and Libya signed the accord in June 2002. Western intelligence sources said the deal was meant to bolster Libya's missile and weapons of mass destruction programs. Iran pledged to train Libya in missiles and the production and use of chemical weapons. Under the contract, Libya would obtain chemical warheads for its extended-range Scud-class missiles.

Upgrading The Temple Vessels

Aug. 22….(Israel News)
Rabbi Menachem Makover, of the Temple Institute in Jerusalem, says that a leading Israeli silver company has signed a deal to design and manufacture the Holy Temple vessels. Rabbi Makover said that that the Temple Institute has completed almost all the Temple vessels, "but with a meager budget, had not been able to fashion them according to the basic requirements of Halakhah. (Jewish Law), Now they will be made in the most beautiful manner that the Holy Temple, 'the beauty of the world,' our Sages teach would necessitate. HaTzorfim will redesign them in the manner that befits the Beit HaMikdash." (the Holy Temple)

Abu Nidal was Assasinated by Iraq!

Aug. 22….(Debka)
Iraq has stepped up efforts to distance itself from the life and times of Sabri al-Banna, better known as Abu Nidal, the notorious Palestinian militant leader. Baghdad, listed by the US as a state sponsor of terrorism, on Wedneday fielded Tahir al-Jaboush, one of its intelligence chiefs, to produce evidence that Abu Nidal was dead and to connect him to an unidentified foreign country. Countering accusations that Iraqi agents had assassinated Abu Nidal, Mr. Jaboush said the fugitive Palestinian militant had shot himself in his apartment in Baghdad as he was about to be taken away for questioning. The press briefing was an exercise attempt to distance the regime of Saddam Hussein, the Iraqi leader, from its former protégé. Abu Nidal, and erase a source of evidence the Bush Administration was considering to unveil against Hussein. Abu Nidal is known to have a vast knowledge of the Arafat-Hussein connections to Osamma bin Laden and the Al Qaeda terrorist network. In Washington, Ari Fleischer, White House spokesman, welcomed Abu Nidal's death, describing him as "one of the most craven and despicable terrorists in the world, he will not be missed". Despite Mr. Jaboush's assertion that Iraqi authorities were about to arrest Abu Nidal when he committed suicide, Mr. Fleischer and Donald Rumsfeld, US secretary of defense, repeated US criticisms of Baghdad's links with terrorism. "The fact that Iraq gave safe haven to Abu Nidal demonstrates the Iraqi regime's complicity in global terror," Mr. Fleischer said.

Abu Nidal, once Yasser Arafat's best friend; later turned fierce foe was shot dead early Friday, August 16th by gunmen who burst into his home in Baghdad. The ailing 65-year old terrorist was probably murdered by the Iraqi military intelligence. Nidal lived in virtual retirement on a select estate situated on the banks of the Tigris reserved for senior terrorists and pensioned-off assassins, whether Egyptian, Syrian, Saudi and Yemeni, or Iraqi intelligence agents who once handled terrorists in the line of duty. The gates of the walled estate are guarded by Iraqi military intelligence agents in plain clothes. Abu Nidal's fee per terrorist operations ranged from $1 million to $3 million. The assassination is seen by many as a message from Saddam Hussein to Yasser Arafat, or as a trade-off in their terrorist alliance. Abu Nidal's mouth was permanently shut five days ago by four bullets. By disposing of one terrorist, Saddam Hussein issued a graphic warning to another, namely Yasser Arafat, as to the fate awaiting collaborators with America!

The Bush Preemptive Policy

Aug. 22….(Reuters)
A U.S. invasion of Iraq to topple Saddam Hussein would mark a radical break in U.S. foreign policy, from a Cold War doctrine of deterrence and containment to one of launching aggressive first strikes against potential future threats. Whether or not President Bush orders an invasion, he has already laid the intellectual groundwork for what he called a doctrine of "preemption" in a speech at West Point on June 1, a doctrine that grew out of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon last Sept. 11. Bush argued that the spread of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, along with ballistic missile technology, gave even weak states and small groups not connected to a country the power to inflict catastrophic damage on major powers. Deterrence, he said, meant nothing against "shadowy terrorist networks" while containment would not work against "unbalanced dictators with weapons of mass destruction." "Our security will require all Americans to be forward-looking and resolute, to be ready for preemptive action when necessary to defend our liberty and to defend our lives," Bush declared. According to former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, such an approach would challenge the international system established by the 1648 Treaty of Westphalia, which laid down the principal of nonintervention in the domestic affairs of other states, although that principal has perhaps been more often honored in the breach than in the observance. More immediately, it would run counter to modern international law, which sanctions the use of force in self-defense only against actual and not potential threats. Still, Kissinger has said in recent newspaper articles and interviews, an attack against Iraq could be justified because the threat of Saddam developing biological or nuclear weapons and then either using them himself or handing them to a terrorist group was overwhelming. Brent Scowcroft, who was national security adviser to Bush's father during the 1991 Gulf War, predicted that the United States would lose most of its allies in Bush's "war against terrorism" if it launched a pre-emptive strike against Iraq and that it would likely prompt Saddam to unleash whatever weapons of mass destruction he possessed against Israel. He said a 'MIDEAST ARMAGEDDON' could ensue. "This time he might succeed, provoking Israel to respond, perhaps with nuclear weapons, unleashing an Armageddon in the Middle East," Scowcroft said.

Al Qaeda Presence In Iraq Reported

Aug. 21….(Washington Post)
At least a handful of ranking members of al Qaeda have taken refuge in Iraq, U.S. intelligence officials said yesterday. Their presence would complicate U.S. efforts against the terrorist network's leadership but also would give the Bush administration another rationale for possible military action against the Iraqi government. Iraq has frequently been cited by administration officials as a haven for al Qaeda fighters who have fled the U.S. military campaign in Afghanistan. But what is new, officials said, is the number and senior rank of the al Qaeda members who have been mentioned in recent classified intelligence reports as being in Iraq. "There are some names you'd recognize," one defense official said. Alluding to these reports, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld yesterday repeated earlier assertions about al Qaeda's presence in Iraq, but he declined to elaborate on the evidence.

Saudis Withdraw Billions of Dollars From US

AUG. 21…..(KOENIG)
Disgruntled Saudis have pulled tens of billions of dollars out of the US, signalling a deep alienation from America. One analyst said the total funds withdrawn by individual investors amount to $200bn. Other bankers put the figure nearer to $100bn. The US-Saudi alliance was put under severe strain after September 11, when 15 of the aeroplanes' 19 hijackers were Saudi nationals. Accusations that Saudi Arabia's austere brand of Islam breeds terrorism and its charities finance Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network have been perceived in the kingdom as attacks on Saudi society and its religion.

An analyst from the Rand Corporation said at a Pentagon briefing this month that Saudi Arabia was the "kernel of evil", exacerbating concerns among the country's elite that they have become demonised in the US and their money is no longer safe there. As part of the fight against terrorism, the US and Saudi authorities have been monitoring the accounts of dozens of Saudi companies and individuals, a move that alarmed Saudi merchants. Youssef Ibrahim, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations working on a project re-examining US-Saudi relations, said Saudis had withdrawn at least $200bn from the US in recent months. He said the move has been driven by hawkish US commentators' calls for the freezing of Saudi assets.

The trend, he added, can be expected to accelerate with last week's trillion-dollar lawsuit by relative of the victims of September 11. The lawsuit accuses several Saudi institutions and charities and three members of the royal family, including the defence minister, of financing terrorism.

Details of Saudi investments in the US are sketchy but financial analysts believe they range between $400bn and $600bn. The funds are invested in private equity, the stock and bond markets and real estate. The figures include investments by members of the royal family. Investors are not thought to be closing down their US accounts. Instead they are moving money into European accounts. Bankers in London said the largest established Saudi investors did not yet seem to be following the trend.

One said: "I'm sceptical about a mass exodus. But there was a lot of Saudi money with American banks that was not diversified, now they [the Saudis] are spreading their wings. Perhaps 30 per cent to 50 per cent of the money that was with US banks is seeking diversification." The Saudi money shifts may have contributed to the recent downward pressure on the dollar.

"People no longer have any confidence in the US economy or in US foreign policy," said Bishr Bakheet, a financial consultant in Riyadh. "And if the latest lawsuit is not thrown out in court, it will mean no more Saudi money in the US."

Israel Withdraws From Bethlehem

Aug. 20....(AP)
Israel began withdrawing from Bethlehem, ending its patrols there as part of an agreement to hand over the West Bank town to Palestinian security control. The agreement to hand over Bethlehem, along with the Gaza Strip, to the Palestinians, was meant as a test case for further transfers of authority in the West Bank. After the Bethlehem handover, Israel is to pull its forces back from forward positions in the Gaza Strip, lifting roadblocks and easing restrictions there, handing security duties over to Palestinian police. If the Palestinians are able to prevent militants from attacking Israel, the Israelis say they will pull back from other Palestinian cities and towns in the West Bank. However, the violent Hamas and Islamic Jihad groups, which have been responsible for most suicide attacks against Israelis, have rejected the agreement and are pledging to step up their attacks against Israel.

Temple Mount South Wall May Fall

Aug. 20....(Arutz)
The southern wall of the Temple Mount will collapse within weeks or months. So says Archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar of Hebrew University, a member of the Committee to Prevent the Destruction of Temple Mount artifacts. Major destruction has occurred where works were carried out by the Waqf starting in 1996, when the Waqf carried out a mosque iconstruction on the ancient site of Solomon's Stables.

Gen. Schwarzkopf: Don't go it Alone!

Aug. 19….(FOJ)
Norman Schwarzkopf, the US general who commanded allied forces during the Gulf War, joined a growing number of senior US military and political figures yesterday who are opposed to a unilateral invasion of Iraq and said President Bush “should not go it alone”. He emphasized that one of the reason's for the success of Operation Desert Storm in 1991 and the expulsion of President Saddam Hussein's troops from Kuwait was almost entirely based on the existence of a broad international coalition. He emphasized the dangers of an invasion without international consensus. Wesley Clark, the retired general who led the NATO alliance during the Kosovo campaign, also joined the voices counseling against an invasion without international co-operation. Former national Security advisor Brent Scowcroft said last week that US action against Iraq, without resolving tensions between Israel and the Palestinians, “could turn the whole region into a cauldron and propel the world headlong towards Armageddon.” The idea of a go-it-alone scenario has been complicated even further with the confirmation that Russia and Iraq are about to agree to a five-year economic co-operation plan worth £27 billion. Russia, as noted in news accounts this week in FOJ has structured new alliances with the Axis of Evil. FOJ Note: Why is the United States in the position of having to “Go-it-Alone” against the countries that sponsor and harbor international terrorists? FOJ predicted exactly this scenario last September after the attacks by Middle East terrorists upon America! (See Newsroom for Sept. 2001) The Prophetic implications of America going-it-alone are surreal.

Looking Ahead to September 11, 2002

Aug. 19….(FOJ)
How will America mark its 1st anniversary of the attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon? While numerous commemorative events are planned to mark the day, it still remains to be seen how the anniversary will portray the terrorists. As discussed by FOJ in the article “America, The Prodigal Nation, America is having a difficult time even rationalizing who its enemy on September 11th was. National Education Association is suggesting to teachers that they be careful on the first anniversary of the September 11 attacks not to "suggest any group or country is responsible" for the terrorist hijackings that killed more than 3,000 people. One of the suggested NEA lesson plans, compiled together under the title "Remember September 11" and appearing on the teachers union health information network web site takes a decidedly blame-America approach, urging educators to "discuss historical instances of American intolerance. Muslim groups are applauding the NEA's efforts. “The NEA's lesson plans provides teachers with a well-balanced, wide range of resources teachers can use to help teach students how to appreciate diversity," said Hodan Hassan, a spokeswoman for the Washington-based Council on American Islamic Relations.

PLO Treasurer Accuses Arafat

Aug. 19….(Ha Aretz)
A former treasurer of the Palestine Liberation Organization, who fled to London last week, accused Yasser Arafat of transferring millions of dollars of international donations into a personal account. Ghussein served until 1996 as secretary general of the Palestinian National Fund, a position that gave him oversight of PLO finances. He said he resigned to protest corruption, and claimed that Arafat was involved. The ex-treasurer, Jawad Ghussein, 71, alleged that Arafat moved up to $8 million to his personal account every month. Arafat took aid money and contributions that were earmarked for the Palestinian peoples and placed it in his own private accounts. Ghussein said that donating countries began to pressure him and to ask questions about money that had disappeared and I found it increasingly difficult to disprove that Arafat wasn't stealing the money. FOJ Note: So what else is new? Stories of Arafat's corrupt dealings have circulated for years, and it has always been well known that he is a thief, a liar, and a murderer.

Abu Nidal found Dead in Baghdad

Aug. 19….(Jerusalem Post)
The body of arch-Palestinian terrorist Abu Nidal was discovered in a Baghdad apartment yesterday, according to the Palestinian daily Al Ayyam. The paper stated that Nidal had committed suicide. Abu Nidal was known to suffer from leukemia. Abu Nidal, 65, whose real name is Sabri Al Banna, broke off from the Palestine Liberation Organization in 1974, and even plotted attempts on Arafat's life, claiming that the PLO was too moderate. Abu Nidal was tried in absentia by a Fatah military court and condemned to death. Beside terrorist operations against Jewish targets in various countries, the bulk of Abu Nidal's actions have been against the mainstream Fatah group. He is responsible for killing 16 of Arafat's men. Nidal was born in Jaffa and grew up in the Gaza Strip. He later moved to Nablus. Nidal was a Palestinian politician and terrorist who cooperated with leaders of Iraq, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Libya at various points in his career. He was initially a member of the Ba'ath party in Jordan (1955), and later became a member of the Al Fatah terrorist organization (1957), from which he was expelled (1974). Most recently, Nidal led an organization known as Fatah the Revolutionary Council, and also known as the Arab Revolution Brigades, among other names. The organization was initially sponsored by Syria and Iraq, but is currently sponsored by Libya. The Terrorism Research Center in 1998 defined Nidal's main objective was "to place the armed struggle against the Zionist enemy as the first priority of the Palestine resistance movement." The release then stated, "The Abu Nidal organization is the most dangerous organization in existence. Abu Nidal decided to fight any effort at moderation by continuing international terrorist operations against Israeli interests and by targeting the moderate Arab states."

Gaza First, as Israel Agrees to Withdraw

Aug. 19….
( Israel and the PA reached An agreement Sunday night in a meeting between Israeli Defense Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer and Palestinian Authority Interior Minister Abdel Razeq Yihiye. In the first stage of the Gaza First plan the Palestinians will begin assuming security responsibility and Israel will ease restrictions on the Palestinian civilian population.

The "Gaza First" security plan, based on the principle of an IDF withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and Bethlehem in exchange for a Palestinian crackdown on militants, could begin with an army pullout from Bethlehem Monday evening, if the PA takes measures to maintain quiet in the area. But Palestinian militant groups including Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said they rejected even a limited cessation of their 22-month-old uprising against Israeli occupation and would continue to mount attacks. "The resistance will find ways to pursue the fight without clashing with the Palestinian Authority," senior Hamas official Abdel-Aziz al-Rantissi told Reuters. "Our rifles will remain directed against the Zionist enemy and only against the Zionist enemy."

Iraq & Russia Plan to Sign Economic Deal

Aug 19…..(Reuters)
Russia and Iraq are set to sign a new $40 billion economic cooperation agreement despite growing threats from the United States to remove Iraqi President Saddam Hussein from power. Iraqi and Russian officials indicate that the 5 year deal will set up cooperation in areas ranging from oil to electrical energy, chemical products, irrigation, railroad construction and transportation. "Russia was, is and will be our main partner," Abbas Khalaf, Iraq's ambassador to Moscow, told the Washington Post newspaper. The agreement could make it even more difficult for the United States to rally Russian and other skeptical world leaders behind any invasion. Russian President Vladimir Putin just last month released a plan calling for increased nuclear cooperation with Iran and this week invited North Korean leader Kim Jong Il to visit. With this new 5 year deal with Iraq, Russia has made alliances with the very three nations (Iraq, Iran and North Korea) that President Bush has described as belonging to an "axis of evil."

Catholic Priests Admit 'Homosexual Subculture'

Aug. 19….(Washington Post)
Amidst persistent rumors that the Catholic Church is harboring homosexual clergy, the Association for the Sociology of Religion Friday released the results of a survey confirming the reality. Church policy does not implicitly forbid ordaining homosexual men, although the Vatican does not endorse the action. According to the survey, more than half of all Roman Catholic priests identified a "homosexual subculture" in their diocese or seminary, the Washington Post reported.

Iran's Ayatollah Rallies Muslims

Aug. 19….(IRNA)
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called on the Islamic countries to take an appropriate stance as reports of a probable US attack on Iraq is gathering further steam. "The Islamic Republic of Iran is opposed to any attack on Iraq. Furthermore the Islamic world should adopt a proper stance against an American attack on a Muslim nation." Ayatollah Khamenei described US' recent mounting of aggressive overtures against Iraq as "blatant bullying", and warned against the consequences of a military adventure in the Persian Gulf region. "Given the special and sensitive position of the Persian Gulf in view of its massive energy reserves, any incident in the region will result in a disadvantage for the instigator of the event," he said. The leader stressed the need for solidarity among Islamic countries in view of their existing problems, especially those of the Palestinian people. "Global powers today have stood up against the Islamic world and the American President George W. Bush has explicitly announced a Crusade war. "Under these conditions, the Islamic countries have to stand together closer than the past and expand their cooperation," Ayatollah Khamenei said.

The Phenomenon of Suicide Bombers

Aug. 19….(FOJ)
In the last year, the suicide bomber has become the most potent military weapon in the Palestinian uprising against Israel, creating a new battlefield that has left one of the world's best trained and equipped armies struggling to adequately defend its people. The suicide bomber has become the Palestinian version of a smart weapon. Moreover, it is cheap, unpredictable and abundant. It is relatively easy to hide, transport and store, and therefore difficult to detect and defend against despite the Israeli military's high-tech prowess and long experience. Unlike any other weapon in the Palestinian's low-tech arsenal, assault rifles, hand grenades, mortars and a few homemade rockets, the suicide bomber has an extended reach, enabling Palestinian terrorists to strike deep into the heart of Israel. Israel's vast and technical army has been largely ineffective against the suicide bombers, who sometimes disguise themselves as Orthodox Jews or Israeli soldiers and slip onto commuter buses, saunter through pedestrian malls or walk into restaurants and cafes. Palestinian terrorist organizations also found that suicide bombings brought them prestige and popularity among the people. So there has developed a kind of competition for producing suicide bombers. The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, which identifies itself as the military wing of Arafat's Fatah movement, was formed specifically to counter the growing popular support of Hamas and its suicide operations. In the last year, al-Aqsa has established the largest number of militant cells in the West Bank and has claimed credit for more than twice as many bombings as Hamas, in its attempts to carry the banner of Yasser Arafat! Yet Arafat claimed that he was doing his utmost to eliminate terrorism in his Authority. "Al-Aqsa went into this thing because of competition," said Eyad Sarraj, a Palestinian psychiatrist and leading civil rights activist in Gaza City. "They were thrown into the competition of suicide bombing in Israel because they want the support of the public and they felt the public support swinging towards Hamas, so they had to do the same thing." An operation can cost from $3,500 to $50,000, but relatively speaking the suicide bomber is a cheap weapon.


Saudis Supporting Al-Qaida in Iraq, Syria

Aug. 16….(World Net)
Intelligence sources believe that Saudi Arabia is quietly helping establish Al-Qaea in northern Iraq and nearby Syria, according to Geostrategy-Direct, the global intelligence news service. Saudi princes are desperate to ensure the status quo and that means keeping Saddam Hussein in powe in Iraq, Geostrategy said. The key Saudi fear is that the United States would create a democratic, pro-Western Iraq. They fear that such a state would win Washington's oil business stead of Saudi Arabia?

Foreign Policy Advisor Warns of Armageddon

Aug. 16….(World Watch)
One of the Republican party's most respected foreign policy gurus yesterday appealed for President Bush to halt his plans to invade Iraq, warning of "an Armageddon in the Middle East". The outspoken remarks from Brent Scowcroft, who advised a string of Republican presidents, including Mr. Bush's father, represented an embarrassment for the administration on a day it was attempting to rally British public support for an eventual war. US national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, yesterday spelled out what she called the "very powerful moral case" for toppling Saddam Hussein. "We certainly do not have the luxury of doing nothing, she said. Scowcroft, who also advised Presidents Nixon and Ford, predicted that an attack on Iraq could lead to catastrophe. "Israel would have to expect to be the first casualty, as in 1991 when Saddam sought to bring Israel into the Gulf conflict. This time, using weapons of mass destruction, he might succeed, provoking Israel to respond, perhaps with nuclear weapons, unleashing an Armageddon in the Middle East," Mr. Scowcroft wrote in the Wall Street Journal. The Israeli government has vowed it would not stand by in the face of attacks as it did in 1991, when Iraqi Scud missiles landed on Israeli cities. Mr. Scowcroft is the elder statesman of the Republican foreign policy establishment, and his views are widely regarded as reflecting those of the first President Bush. Mr. Scowcroft argued that by alienating much of the Arab world, an assault on Baghdad, would halt much of the cooperation Washington is receiving in its current battle against the al-Qaida organization. "An attack on Iraq at this time would seriously jeopardize, if not destroy, the global counter-terrorist campaign we have undertaken," Mr. Scowcroft wrote.

Rice Lays Out Case For War In Iraq

Aug. 16….(Jerusalem Post)
The United States and other nations have little choice but to seek the removal of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein from power, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice said in an interview broadcast yesterday, citing "a very powerful moral case" for action. "This is an evil man who, left to his own devices, will wreak havoc again on his own population, his neighbors and, if he gets weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them, on all of us," Rice stated. "There is a very powerful moral case for regime change. We certainly do not have the luxury of doing nothing." Rice made a forceful case that Hussein's removal was a clear example of the administration's new doctrine of "preemption," striking potential enemies threatening mass destruction before they strike first.

Arafat would win Palestinian Election

Aug. 16….(Jerusalem Post)
Some sixty percent of Palestinians said they would vote for PA Chairman Yasser Arafat if elections were held today. That compares to 86% of Palestinians who voted for Arafat in 1996. A Palestinian source quoted officials around Arafat as saying the poll reflected the American and Israeli "conspiracy" against him. However the popularity of local Fatah leaders like jailed West Bank Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti has grown drastically during the intifada. Recent polls show that Barghouti is the second most popular Palestinian leader after Arafat. Hamas which has gained popularity during the Intifada will most likely boycott the elections as they did in 1996. Palestinians indicated that the most desired quality in a Palestinian president according to 74% of those polled is their ability to "confront Israel." On the issue of PA governing reforms that President Bush has said is vital to American backing of the Middle East Peace Process, 86% of Palestinians indicated that they know nothing about any reforms, and that it was merely a propaganda tool of the US.

Shalhevet Pass's Murderer is Caught

Aug. 16….(FOJ)
In an operation in the Hebron area early Friday morning, the Israel Defense Force arrested Friday Sudki Zaro, the Palestinian sniper who is believed to behind the killing in March of 2001, 18 months ago of a 10-month-old baby, Shalhevet Pass. Baby Shalhevet sat in her baby-stroller on a playground when Sudi Zaro shot her in the head while shooting from a nearby overlook. The murder of Shalhevet was orchestrated by Yasser Arafat's Fatah terror units, and was planned to incite a backlash from Israel with the goal publicly portraying Israel as using heavy-handed tactics against the Palestinians.

Palestinians Support Iraq against US

Aug. 15….(Ha Aretz)
Setting fire to U.S. and Israeli flags, and chanting "Dear Saddam, bomb Tel Aviv", several hundred Palestinians demonstrated on Thursday in support of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and against U.S. policies. They were marching through the Rafah refugee camp, a flash-point of violence in the south of the Gaza Strip since the Palestinian uprising which began nearly 2 years ago. "We are marching to tell Iraq, we will be giving millions of martyrs on the way," they chanted. Many of the marchers were youths and some were children. Some marched with bare chests, clutched automatic machineguns and had black paint smeared on their faces like combat soldiers. Raouf Barbakh, a member of Arafat's Fatah movement and an organizer of the rally, said Palestinians and Iraqis shared "the same present and the same future". "As Palestinians we reject America's plans to oust Saddam, the same as we reject its demands to oust Arafat," he added. Saddam's popularity rose among Palestinians during the 1991 Gulf War and some Palestinians cheered as Iraqi missiles struck Israeli cities at that time. From Saddam, the families of sons who carried out suicide attacks against Israeli targets receive about $25,000, while families of victims are given about $10,000. The money has been distributed at ceremonies in Gaza and the West Bank. The Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, a terror cell directly under Yasser Arafat's control orchestrated the march.

US at Odds With Egypt and Saudi Arabia

Aug. 15….(FOJ)
The Bush administration will oppose any additional foreign aid for Egypt to protest the Egyptian government's prosecution of human rights campaigner Saad Eddin Ibrahim and its poor treatment of pro-democracy organizations, administration sources said yesterday. Bush's decision to criticize Mubarak and connect Egypt's human rights performance to economic aid is a notable shift in policy toward a longtime ally considered essential to U.S. efforts to calm the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and remove Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. Human rights groups said the Bush decision is "the most significant step the United States has ever taken to defend human rights in the Arab world." Egypt will continue to receive its annual allocation of nearly $2 billion in U.S. assistance. The Mubarak government had been lobbying for an extra $130 million after a congressional vote to grant Israel $200 million in anti-terrorism funds. Citing a formula dating to the 1978 Camp David peace accords, the Egyptians said they, too, deserved more. The US has given Egypt nearly 60 billion dollars in foreign aid since Egypt entered into the Camp David Accords with Israel in 1979. President Mubarak has become increasingly critical of the US role in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, stating that America is not a fair negotiator! (Maybe he should return the 60 billion dollars, the US has expended to Egypt for establishing a semblance of peace between Egypt and Israel, and the $13 billion canceled national debt in 1991) Egypt's continuous and systematic armament and its continuing indoctrination in the Egyptian military to the effect that Israel is the enemy, added to Mubarak's statements himself, that if there is a conflagration in the north between Israel and Syria, Egypt won't stand on the sidelines.

The controversy between Egypt and the US comes at the same time that America is being advised that Saudi Arabia is no longer an ally of the US, but is rather a meddlesome enemy, who finances terror and theologically promotes Muslim fundamentalism along with Iran. (Iran-Axis of Evil) It is increasingly apparent that America is finding itself with few friends in the Middle East, and around the world because of its support for Israel's right to exist.

Israel Prepared for Iraqi Attacks

Aug. 15….(Worthy News)
Israeli Air Force Commander Maj.-Gen. Dan Halutz said Wednesday that the "air force is prepared in the sensitive areas of the country for the possibility that Iraq would fire missiles at Israel." An American attack on Iraq could pull us unwillingly into the conflict," Halutz said. We can defend with the arrow anti-missile system. There is no system in the world like the Arrow," he said. "It's the only operational system that can deal with ground-to-ground missiles. But the Arrow system does not operate alone, and if missiles are fired here, there are other means we can use." Last Friday, Yediot Aharonot reported that an Arrow missile battery will be positioned at Ein Shemer, east of Hadera, in preparation for an Iraqi attack. Defense Ministry officials confirmed yesterday that the Home Front Command is preparing to distribute capsules to counter the effects of radioactivity should Iraq launch a nuclear attack.

If Attacked, Israel Might Nuke Iraq

Aug. 15….(Ha Aretz)
If Iraq strikes at Israel with non-conventional weapons, causing massive casualties among the civilian population, Israel could respond with a nuclear retaliation that would eradicate Iraq as a country. This grave assessment, from American intelligence, was presented last week to the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. During the 1991 Gulf War, then U.S. defense secretary Richard Cheney, now vice-president, told CNN that Israel could respond with nuclear weapons to an Iraqi strike that included the use of chemical weapons. This assessment has only been strengthened since then, because according to all the signs, Iraq now has biological weapons that could cause mass casualties. According to one assessment, military-grade biological weapons can be almost as lethal as a nuclear bomb. The U.S. intelligence assessments include an analysis of possible Israeli responses. The lowest probability is that Israel would respond initially with a conventional military retaliation if it is slightly harmed, and would add a warning that a non-conventional response was possible if the Iraqi attacks on the Israeli civilian population continued. The possibility of Israel using nuclear weapons against Iraq appears in a document submitted by military expert Dr. Anthony Cordesman, a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Presumably, the document is based, in part, on official administration assessments. In the worst case scenario, writes Cordesman, Israel could face an existential threat to important urban areas such as Tel Aviv or Haifa. Under such conditions, it would threaten nuclear retaliation against Iraqi cities and military forces to cease the Iraqi attack.

Egypt's Grand Mufti Justifies Palestinian Suicide Attacks

Aug. 15….(Jerusalem Post)
Egypt's most prominent Muslim cleric, Grand Mufti Sheikh Mohammed Ahmed Al Tayeb, defended the Palestinians' use of suicide bombings against Israel in a Wednesday interview with Agence France Presse. Describing suicide attacks as the sole means of struggle which the Palestinians have in current circumstances, the Mufti said that "We have a strong (Israeli) enemy army and a very weak people, and these people have not found another means of defending itself thus we should not say that it should not be done."

Catholic Bishops Reject Evangelization of the Jews

Aug. 15….(EWTN)
A subcommittee of the US bishops' conference has approved a statement saying that campaigns that target Jews for conversion to Christianity are no longer theologically acceptable in the Catholic Church." That statement which was widely reported in the US press as a pronouncement of the US bishops' conference was actually contained in a "consultation" made public by an inter-religious committee under the auspices of the US bishops' Office of Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Affairs.

In a front-page story on the document, the Boston Globe pointed out that the statement puts the US bishops' representatives at odds with leading Evangelical Protestant groups, who insist unwaveringly that salvation comes only through Jesus Christ. Eugene Fisher, who supervises Catholic-Jewish dialogue for the US bishops' conference, told the Globe that the disagreement could reflect "a pastoral difference in understanding the relation of Christ's church to the Jewish people.''

Water Shortage Crisis in The Arab States

Aug. 15….(Arabic News)
Studies and statistics issued by international and Arab organizations and commissions indicate that the Arabs are gradually entering the circle of water shortage. Based on that, unless the situation is dealt with before 2010, the problem will be conducive to conflicts especially with the continued expansion of the Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories. The main reason behind water shortage lies in the way international rivers are shared. Certain countries would not be in an actual water discrepancy if they would have taken their share of the shared international rivers like the (Euphrates and Tigris), shared between Syria, Iraq and Turkey. The "Jordan River" which is shared by several countries, is totally used by Israel besides the ground-waters in the West Bank, al-Leitani river and the occupied Syrian Golan Heights. Based on such a drastic condition, the study recommended the need of a joint Arab move to found a water security fund at both the country and Arab levels. In this context the study recommended development of the government's departments in the Arab states working in the areas of water administration and water resources protection from pollution. It also recommended work for reaching legal formula that can support ownership rights of the Arab states to water resources, and holding joint projects between the countries on shared water sources, springs, and sea water desalinization.

FOJ Note: ( Revelation 16:12 And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared. )

Muslims are Immigrating into America

Aug. 15….(World Net)
Middle Easterners make up the fastest growing immigration group to the United States, according to a new study, though the government estimates that one in 10 come into the country illegally. According to a just-completed study by the Center for Immigration Studies, "interest in coming to the United States remains very strong in the Middle East," despite fallout from the Sept. 11 attack. While the size of the overall immigrant population (legal and illegal) has tripled since 1970, the number of immigrants from the Middle East has grown more than seven-fold, from less than 200,000 in 1970 to nearly 1.5 million in 2000. However, officials said the Immigration and Naturalization Service, along with the U.S. Census Bureau estimate that around 10 percent, or 150,000 Mid-eastern immigrants are in the U.S. illegally. The study also found that if there are no changes in current immigration policy, "1.1. million new immigrants (legal and illegal) from the Middle East are projected to settle in the U.S. by 2007." Also, CIS found that the religious composition of Middle Eastern immigrants is increasingly Muslim, with 73 percent of immigrants being Muslim. The report predicted that if U.S. immigration policy and Middle Eastern emigration trends continued it would lead to likely "changes in U.S. policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict as elected officials respond to this population's growing electoral importance." A significant number of Middle Eastern immigrants use the welfare system. "In 2000, nearly one in five Middle Eastern immigrants and their young children, compared to about one in 10 natives, used at least one major welfare program, compared to only 15 percent of natives. The report suggests that Mid-eastern immigration is creating social forces and trends that would have been entirely unexpected a generation ago. It could reshape America politically and religiously!

PLO's Barghouti Charged in Israeli Court

Aug. 14….(Arutz)
Fatah Tanzim terrorist leader Marwan Barghouti, a right-hand man of Yasser Arafat, was indicted this morning in a Tel Aviv District Court on charges of murder and related crimes. Barghouti stands behind dozens of terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians since the beginning of the Oslo War almost two years ago. The charges against him include murder, aiding and abetting murder, attempted murder, criminal conspiracy, and serving as an active member in a terror organization. He was apprehended on April 15 at the height of Israel's Operation Defensive Shield anti-terror campaign. Among the dozens of terror acts he oversaw were the following:

* The murder of six Jews during a Bat Mitzva celebration in Hadera in January 2002;

* A shooting spree on Jaffa St. in Jerusalem, killing two, Jan. 22, 2002.

* The murder of a Greek Orthodox monk on the road to Ma'aleh Adumim, June 12, 2001;

* The murder of a policewoman in N'vei Yaakov, a coffee company owner and philanthropist in Atarot, and three Israelis in a Tel Aviv restaurant - all in a ten-day period in Feb.-Mar. 2002.

On September 29, 2001, Barghouti told the London-based Al Hayat newspaper about his role in igniting the current Oslo War. Excerpts from his words in that article: "I knew that the end of the month of September 2000 would be the last opportunity before the explosion, but when Sharon arrived at the Al Aqsa Mosque it was the most suitable moment for the breakout of the Intifada. This is because the subject concerns Jerusalem, and even more it regards Al Aqsa. The meaning of this: setting fire to the entire region, and specifically [due to the fact] that the issue of Al Aqsa inflames and ignites the sensibilities of the masses. "On the eve of Ariel Sharon's visit I participated in a TV panel, on a local TV station. I found this to be the right opportunity to call upon the public to go to Al Aqsa on the following morning because it is not possible for Sharon to arrive at the Temple Mount 'just like that' and walk away peacefully. I was determined to create friction. "There were those who were opposed to the conflict. At the same time, I saw within the situation a historic opportunity to ignite the conflict. "After Sharon left, I had stayed in the area for two hours with other well known people and we spoke about the character of the reaction and of how people should react in all the towns and villages and not only in Jerusalem. We made contact with all the factions. The next day when I arrived in the Old City, the conflict had started already and no one could enter or leave. Close to 3,000 people barricaded the area. We wanted the situation to result in the Intifada war.

“Arafat's a Billionaire”

Aug. 14….(Jerusalem Post)
Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's is worth an estimated $1.3 billion, OC Intelligence has conformed to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Arafat's financial adviser Muhammed Rashid is continuing to channel funds to Arafat, despite the progress made by newly appointed Finance Minister Salem Fayad in taking control of the ministry's finances.The income from PA monopolies is still being channeled to Arafat and reform officer Fayad has not yet succeeded in taking control of that money. As for Arafat's position, he remains "isolated," but is maintaining his power and legitimacy by means that include the meetings of his ministers with Israeli officials. Even those who are close to Arafat are trying to maintain a distance from him, but yet are insisting on being part of the decision-making as a condition for later cooperation with him.

Bush Axes Anti-Terror Aid to Israel

Aug. 14….(Reuters)
US President George Bush put a freeze on $200 million in anti-terrorism assistance for Israel yesterday. The $200 million earmarked for Israel was part of a $29 billion Congress-approved spending proposal geared to support the US war on terror, as well as assist New York's recovery from the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center. The president said that the package exceeded the necessary spending limit by $5.1 billion. $50 million had also been earmarked for humanitarian aid to the Palestinian Authority.

British Imams Plotting Islamic Holy War Plans

Aug. 14….(Telegraph)
Radical Islamic leaders in London issued a thinly-veiled threat yesterday that the United States and Britain could face a terrorist onslaught akin to the September 11 attacks if they go to war on Iraq. Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad, a Muslim Imam from London, said he and other Muslim Imams would issue a fatwa, or religious edict, telling Muslims how to respond to the "evil" of an American attack on an Islamic country. Fundamentalist Muslims view any US-British military action against Iraq as the greater evil, part of a "Satanic alliance" against Muslims around the world. "I believe September 11 was a direct response to the evil American policy in the Muslim world," said Sheikh Omar Bakri. "We are giving sincere advice to the British Government and the British public so they understand the consequences of playing with fire." He will be joined at a press conference tomorrow by several other Imam radicals, some of whom have been accused of links with Osama bin Laden and his al-Qa'eda network. They include Sheikh Abu Hamza al-Masri, Muhammad al-Masari, the Saudi opposition leader living in exile in London, and Yasser al-Siri. The press release indicated that the group would "give the uncompromising Islamic stance on the US Crusade against Muslims in general and Iraq in particular". It denounced America as "the head of Satan", and Iraqi opposition groups allied to the US as Muslims who have "sold themselves to Satan". Sheikh Omar Bakri was careful to say that Muslims in Britain, who are under a "covenant" to respect British laws, are not permitted to carry out terrorist attacks. But by his interpretation of Islam, "Muslims abroad" would not have to respect such restrictions, and would be allowed to use any means to retaliate.

Iran Training Hezbullah Forces in Lebanon

Aug. 13….(Daily Star)
A detachment of Iranian Revolutionary Guards (IRG) are in Lebanon training elite units of Hizbullah and Palestinian fighters to fire rockets and carry out underwater suicide operations as part of a $50 million program, according to a “special report” allegedly compiled by a Western intelligence agency. The report focuses on a secret meeting of representatives of hard-line anti-Israel terror groups that took place on the eve of a June 2-3 conference in Tehran in support of the Palestinian intifada. The report contains perhaps the most detailed account yet made public on allegations that Lebanon hosts training camps for anti-Israel Islamic groups. Among those gathered for the meeting were Ahmed Jibril, leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, General Command, Ramadan Shallah, leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, representatives of Hizbullah and two senior officers from the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. One of the IRG officers was named as General Ali Reza Tamzar whom the report claimed is the commander of the Iranian forces in the Bekaa. Also present at the Tehran meeting was Imad Mughnieh, who is suspected of masterminding anti-American attacks in 1980s Lebanon and is ranked second after Saudi dissident Osama bin Laden on America's most wanted “terrorist” list, and has acted as Yasser Arafat's liason. The meeting was arranged to thwart any attempts to halt the suicide bombing campaign in Israel and neutralize the intifada. A working plan was hammered out in which Hizbullah, Hamas and the PIJ would cooperate on launching attacks. The report said that the participants were assured that Tehran was willing to put all the “financial, military, logistic, and security capabilities of the Islamic revolution at their disposal. ”The report said the budget allocated for the plan amounted to $50 million. New shipments of missiles and rockets have been dispatched to Lebanon, the report said, including Fajr 5 surface-to-surface rockets which have a range of 70 kilometers, SAM-7 anti-aircraft missiles and the more advanced US-made Stinger anti-aircraft missiles. Training is underway at Khuraj in the Bekaa Valley with Syrian oversight. Reports of Hizbullah acquiring Iranian Fajr rockets were first aired in February 2000 and the Israeli military has long asserted that the resistance possesses Stinger missiles, although no firings from South Lebanon have yet taken place. On a visit to South Lebanon in late May, deputy speaker of the Iranian Parliament, Mohammad Reza Khatami, said that Iran was ready to support the “Lebanese resistance movement, as well as the Palestinian intifada,” and that the world's Muslims were religiously obliged to provide “material and moral support for the Palestinian intifada. In April, Hojatoleslam Mohammadi Golpayegani, who heads the office of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khameini, told a gathering of Syrians, Iranians, Iraqis, and Lebanese in Damascus that Iranian policy is to “strengthen and support the front line of resistance against the State of Israel.” Hassan Nasrallah, Hizbullah's secretary-general, said in a speech that Hezbullah needs to operate in such a method that they remain un-dectable to the American war on terrorism strategists.

Muslim Imams Pledge to 'transform West'

'If Islamic state rises, we will be its army'
Aug. 13….(World Net)
The West will never "reach the level of Islam," and Western society will be "transformed" through an "external or cultural invasion" by Islam, according to two Islamic leaders in Great Britain. In recent interviews with the London-based daily Al-Hayat, Egyptian-born Sheik Abu Hamza, imam of the Finsbury Park Mosque and head of the Ansar Al-Shari'ah organization; and Syrian-born Sheik Omar Bakri, founder and leader of the Islamic Religious Court in London and head of the Al-Muhajiroun Islamist Organization, predicted Western civilization and law would eventually succumb to Islam. Their interviews provided insights into how Islamic leaders attempt to use Western-style freedoms and laws to accomplish their goal of spreading the Islamic faith. For example, Hamza, in his interview, said that although he lives in Britain, he does not consider himself a British citizen except "to the extent that I use my British documents to move around." "I live here and I hold a passport," he said. "It is a superficial identity; but real identity is in the heart and in the mind, and this is the identity that drives a man. This identity is Islam. Hamza also hinted that Islamic law would never tolerate certain types of behavior that are tolerated in the U.S. and elsewhere throughout the West. Bakri said the West was guilty of imposing "man-made law" on Muslims, but that a future Islamic regime will impose Islamic religious rulings on them." "Either we preach to them the West and they will accept Islam, or we will live among them and they will be influenced by our lives and will accept Islam as a political solution to their problems, not as an ideological solution," he said. The Syrian-born Bakri also said, "Allah willing, we will transform the West into Dar Al-Islam that is, a region under Islamic rule by means of invasion without," said Bakri. "If an Islamic state arises and invades the West we will be its army and its soldiers from within. If not, we will change the West through ideological invasion … without war and killing." Bakri said Islam sought to use Western-style liberties to accomplish its goal of subverting the West to Islamic rule. Bakri said any contradiction in Western law serves Islam "because we will be able to claim that the capitalist camp has failed in the face of the Islamic camp in actualizing the things in which it believes, like freedom of expression." He said he stays "on the margins" of Western law by neither obeying them nor betraying them. "Allah said: 'Do not obey the infidels and the hypocrites.

FOJ Note: It has been reported that Great Britain today has more Islamic mosques than it has Christian churches. Recently Queen Elizabeth attended services in an Islamic mosque.

Saudi Arabia: Ally of Axis of Evil?

Aug. 13….(FOJ)
Recently captured documents by Israel have confirmed that the Saudi kingdom actively gives cash to a variety of terrorist organizations and showers money or free trips to Mecca to the families of suicide bombers. The bounty can no longer be seen as mere postmortem charity, but rather as premeditated financial incentives for murder. It cannot be discounted that 15 of the 19 September 11th attackers on the US were Saudi nationals, and that 11 of 15 of the Khobar Towers attackers were Saudi's. No country in the world is more hostile to the American idea of religious tolerance, free speech, constitutional government, and sexual equality, than is Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia bankrolls the “Council on American-Islamic Relations, the American Muslim Council and the Islamic Society of North America” to work as organizations claiming to represent the community of American Muslims, but their real agenda is to undermine the United States from within, and help transform it into an Islamic country. Saudi Arabia is working jointly with Iran to spread the Islamic Empire. In October 1996, then Iranian President Hashemi Rafsanjani A secret accord was signed by Rafsanjani and Saudi Prince Faisal whereby the two nations agreed on thefollowing:

a. Saudi Arabia will never communicate to the United States, any of its findings on the Khobar Towers investigation or any other information on Iran's involvement in terrorist operations.

b. Iran in return undertakes to refrain from terrorist acts or incitement to terror in the Saudi kingdom, especially in the Shiite Eastern Provinces (where the Saudi oil fields are also located).

c.Iran and Saudi Arabia offer reciprocal safeguards for each other's interests.

d. Iran promises to come to Saudi Arabia's aid against an Iraqi attack; Saudi Arabia pledges assistance to Iran against an Iraqi or American attack. Last week the Saudi Prince shut the doors to any US access to Saudi soil for an attack on Iraq.

Islamic Imam issues Fatwa Against US

Aug. 13….(Jerusalem Post)
A senior Lebanese Shiite Muslim cleric issued a fatwa Monday banning Muslims from helping the United States and its allies in any military strike on Iraq. In his religious edict, the Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah reminded Muslims throughout the world that God prohibits assisting "infidels" against Muslims. Fadlallah, 67, is a senior Shiite religious authority and a harsh critic of the U.S. Fatwas are followed by conservative Muslims and sanction or prohibit acts according to Islamic Sharia law. "Fadallah's fatwa makes it non-permissible to assist America or its allies in striking the Iraqi people or enabling America to control their economic resources, natural wealth and general policy. In his fatwa Fadlallah rejected the idea of America waging a war on Iraq to oust President Saddam Hussein. "Muslims must handle their own affairs by themselves in changing the internal corrupt situation and eliminating the injustice (inflicted) on them in all Muslim countries," he said without elaborating.

US Preparations for Iraq Offensive

Aug. 12….(Debka)
Whether the world realizes it or not, America's offensive against Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq has already begun as an exercise in “gradualism” rather than a D-Day type drama. The fact of the matter is that American military concentrations are already unobtrusively present in northern and southern Iraq. The US campaign to oust Saddam is therefore unfolding already, albeit in a slice by slice fashion under clouds of dis-information and diversionary ruses. Special US forces have already entered the Kurdish regions of north Iraq to set up local Kurdish militias and train them for battle. America has also erected a ring of bases, using existing facilities and adding new ones around Iraq. They have poured into those bases US armored ground units, tanks, air, navy and missile forces, as well as combat medical units and special contingents for anti-nuclear, biological and chemical warfare. The noose around Iraq extends from Georgia and Turkey in the north, Israel, Egypt and Jordan to the west, Eritrea and Kenya in the southwest, and Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain to the south. Furthermore, a large US armada, including aircraft carriers, has assembled at three points: the eastern Mediterranean, the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf. US and British air bombers went into action on August 6th and destroyed the Iraqi air command and control center at al-Nukhaib in the desert between Iraq and Saudi Arabia. The center contained advanced fiber optic networks recently installed by Chinese companies. For the first time, the US air force used new precision-guided bombs capable of locating and destroying fiber optic systems. Then on Wednesday night, August 8, Turkey executed its first major military assault inside Iraq. Turkish and Kurdish informants indicated that helicopters under US, British and Turkish warplane escort flew Turkish commandos to an operation for seizing the critical Bamerni airport in northern Iraq. This airport, just outside the Kurdish region, lies 50 miles north of the big Iraqi oil cities of the north, Kirkuk and Mosul. American and Iraqi forces have already faced off in a battle over the Syrian-Iraq railroad. This railroad is Saddam's back door for taking delivery of his illegal overseas arms purchases, which are ferried from Syrian ports to Baghdad by the Syrian-Iraqi railway. The bulk of the Iraqi army is concentrated in three regions outside Baghdad, in the Kurdish regions of the north, the H-3 and al Baghdadi air bases opposite the Jordanian border in the center, and along the Saudi and Kuwaiti frontiers, in the south.

China Active in Middle East WMD Buildup

Aug. 12….(Middle East News Line)
The United States has uncovered evidence pointing to the fact that China is selling weapons of mass destruction to Middle East states to finance efforts to modernize Beijing's own military. U.S. officials said this includes WMD sales to such countries as Egypt, Iran, Libya, Syria and Saudi Arabia. They said the sales include the technology for the development of both biological and chemical weapons. Recent reports have indicated that China and North Korea each have invested heavily in helping the so-called Axis of Evil attain weapons of mass destruction.

Pope Backs Mid-East Peace Force

Aug. 12….(Reuters)
Pope John Paul made an emotional appeal Sunday for peace in the Middle East, and gave his apparent support to an international peacekeeping forces in the region. I cannot stop thinking with extreme concern about the Holy Land, the Pope said in his regular Sunday address. "I ask the international community to commit itself with greater determination to be present on the ground, offering mediation to create the conditions for a fruitful dialogue between the parties that would accelerate peace." The Pope criticized both Palestinian suicide bombers and Israeli plans to wall in their settlements. "Yet again, I make an appeal to the Israeli and Palestine politicians responsible to recover the path of fair negotiations," the 82-year-old Pontiff said. Speaking of his personal pain for the bloodshed in the Holy Land, Pope John Paul II delivered one of his most forceful denunciations yet of Middle East violence, lamenting that Palestinians were subjected to virtual "collective punishment" and Israelis were gripped by a daily fear of attacks. "When will one learn that co-existence between the Israeli and Palestinian people cannot result from arms? Neither attacks, nor walls of separation, nor retaliation will ever lead to a just solution of the conflict under way," The pope added, Muslims cannot gather for Friday prayers because of "a rigid curfew." That amounted to "violation of a fundamental right, that of freedom of worship," he said.

FOJ Note: Israel opposes the placement of UN forces around Israel, while Yasser Arafat has always advocated the presence of UN special forces in the region. UN special forces around Israel have always resulted in an increase of volatile activity on Israel's borders.

Annan: UN Will Continue Dealing With Arafat

Aug. 12….(UN News)
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has affirmed that the United Nations will continue dealing with President Yasser Arafat, the leader of the Palestinian people. In a statement issued in New York, a spokesman for the Secretary-General recalled that Mr. Annan has "repeatedly and consistently" stated that it is up to the Palestinian people to elect their leaders. The Secretary-General recently made this point during a meeting of the diplomatic Quartet on the Middle East, which comprises the UN, United States, Russian Federation and European Union. "President Arafat has been elected by the Palestinian people and the United Nations will continue to deal with him in this capacity," he said.

Saudi Arabia Building Missile Center

Aug. 12….(World Net)
Saudi Arabia, with massive aid acquired from China over the last decade has built a command center for 120 long-range missiles capable of hitting targets up to 3,500 kilometers away with large conventional, nuclear, chemical or biological payloads. The CSS-2, or Dong-Peng 3, missiles are based in the El-Solayil desert oasis about 500 kilometers from Riyadh, with a smaller quantity at Al-Jofar, about 100 kilometers from the city. Satellite photography of the secret military installation at El-Solayil shows intensive construction in the region stretching over hundreds of square miles. The report says the Saudis have 12 missile launchers and have built approach roads, command centers, a huge residential area, a mosque for engineers and a large area of bunkers with a storage capacity of over 60,000 cubic meters. Just east of the missile base positioned in narrow, hidden ravines is a Saudi air force base with two squadrons of Tornado jet fighters. U.S. and Israeli intelligence has been aware of the Saudi missile center for years. The Saudis reportedly told the Americans the missiles were needed to defend themselves from Iran and that their purchase was arranged after the U.S. refused to sell Riyadh F15 fighters in 1985. King Fahd reportedly promised the U.S that the Saudis would not place chemical or nuclear warheads on the missiles and would never use them in a first strike. He also reportedly promised Saudi Arabia would not take part in the development of nuclear warheads, but it has bankrolled Pakistan's “Islamic bomb” project. About 1,000 Chinese engineers participated in building the site, says the report. Chinese engineers are still responsible for maintaining the missiles, which are capable of striking as far away as Israel.


Saudi Royals Attack Christian Fundamentalists

Aug. 9….(World Net)
The Saudi Kingdom has launched a vitriolic attack on what it describes as Christian fundamentalism in the United States. One Saudi newspaper, al-Watan, said Christian fundamentalism was no less dangerous to international peace and security than other forms of religious extremism. The Saudi paper said the international media had concentrated only on Muslim fundamentalism, forgetting that Christian fundamentalism was just as dangerous. The paper said the influence of Christian extremists in America had increased since the attacks on New York and the Pentagon last year. The paper said Christian fundamentalism in the US was particularly dangerous because it was capable of influencing American foreign policy to further its own interests which were identical with Israeli interests in the Middle East. Another newspaper, The Saudi Gazette, said Christian fundamentalists in the US were raising what it described as "dust of hatred" over Islam and Saudi Arabia, and called on President Bush to rein in Christian fundamentalists elements whose agenda threatens to initiate a clash of civilizations, because of it bias towards Israel. This message was conveyed to President Bush by Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah when he visited the President in Texas last month.

Israeli Knesset Member Visits Temple Mount

Aug. 9….(Jerusalem Post)
Nearly two years after the Temple Mount was declared off-limits to non-Muslims due to concerns over renewed violence, MK Michael Kleiner was permitted by police to briefly enter the area Thursday night. Kleiner, who had led a group of several hundred demonstrators on a walk to the Western Wall plaza from Jaffa Gate, said that his decision to visit the site came after months of increasing frustration and failure by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to reopen the site to Jews and Christians. "The Temple Mount, the holiest site for Judaism, has been decreed Judenrein," Kleiner said. "This racial discrimination must stop." Waving placards that read "Free the Temple Mount," and wearing T-shirts that read "The Temple Mount is for the Jews, Mecca is for the Arabs," the largely religious crowd of several hundred made its way through the narrow alleyways of Jerusalem's Old City to the plaza area.

Powell Meets With Saeb Erekat

Aug. 9….(Ha Aretz)
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said Thursday after a meeting with the PA delegation that the Bush administration will focus its Middle East peace policy on encouraging Israelis and Palestinians to take substantial steps forward in security. "I reaffirmed to ministers that the President is committed to doing everything possible to find a way forward, recognizing the difficulties that exist and condemning the violence that afflicts the region and occasionally thwarts our ability to move forward," Powell said after the talks at the State Department. "But we will not be deterred, we will continue to move forward," Powell added. Saeb Erekat, Arafat's chief negotiator, pointedly told reporters after meeting Powell that Arafat was the elected leader of the Palestinians and the delegation represented him. "As far as President Arafat is concerned, we made sure that this delegation is fully mandated by President Arafat and by the Palestinian leadership. We are not a delegation of freelancers," Erekat said.

"We get our legitimacy from our President Arafat and the Palestinian Authority and we want people to respect the democratic choice of the Palestinian people," he said. "President Arafat is the elected leader of the Palestinian people." Palestinian top negotiator Saeb Erekat looked on as U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed journalists after thier meeting at the State Department in Washington. Palestinian ministers met with Secretary of State Colin Powell and White House national security adviser Condoleeza Rice in the highest-level contacts since President George W. Bush laid out his aim to disregard Arafat in June.

China has Upgraded Iraqi Defense

Aug. 9….(Geostrategy Intelligence)
Iraq has quietly upgraded its air defense systems since the 1991 Persian Gulf War to the level that they are now reputed to be one of the defense best systems in the entire world. The Iraqi air defense capabilities have been vastly modernized with the help of Chinese sources. China has invested heavily in upgrading Iraq's anti-aircraft batteries and command and control systems. Thanks to the Chinese, The Iraqi air defense system is one of the toughest, most complex systems that we see in the world," Brig. Gen. John Rosa, deputy operations director for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said. Iraqi President Saddam Hussein went on Iraqi television this week announcing that he was not scared by U.S. threats to topple him and said those who attack Iraq will be digging their own graves. It is widely assumed that China will be closely monitoring the effectiveness of the new defense systems against an American air assault on Iraq, as a means to gage its own future ambitions against the US in the Taiwan arena.

Bush Administration Meeting with Arafat's Negotiator

Aug. 8….(FOJ)
Irrespective of his demand that Arafat must go, President Bush has permitted his cabinet to meet with Arafat's negotiating chief Saeb Erekat, to launch a series of meetings to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It is like meeting with the Devil. In a series of high-level meetings with members of the Bush Administration in Washington, a delegation of Palestinian Authority officials headed by cabinet minister Saeb Erekat met today with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. The delegation was to meet later in the day with Secretary of State Colin Powell, as part of the American attempt to assess prospects for a makeover of the PA. Anything but Israel's withdrawal from the West Bank, Gaza and part of Jerusalem to make way for a Palestinian state is unacceptable, Erekat said. The three PA Cabinet officers were appointed to their posts in June by Arafat. Powell has praised two of them as being reform-minded. But Erekat, responding to Bush's demand for Arafat's ouster, said "that cannot be acceptable." Arafat is the elected president of the Palestinian people and the alternative to him is chaos, Erekat said. "Where do you think I come from - from Mars?" Erekat asked at a news conference, underscoring Arafat remained in charge. "I am part of President Arafat's leadership."

Saudi Arabia Spatting With US Defense

Aug. 8….(FOJ)
In a Defense Policy Board briefing on July 10, analysts from the Rand Corporation, a highly-respected Washington think tank, told intellectuals and former administration officials who consult the Pentagon that Saudi Arabia "supports our enemies and attacks our allies." The Saudis are active at every level of the terror chain, from planners to financiers, from cadre to foot soldier, from ideologist to cheerleader! Secretary of State Rumsfeld added that while there are some concerns about activities in Saudi Arabia, simmering Islamic fundamentalism has worried U.S. officials, but on balance the relationship is very productive. State Department spokesman Philip Reeker said that Secretary of State Colin Powell called the Saudi foreign minister Tuesday to reassure the kingdom that "the musings of individuals" don't reflect the policy of the Bush Administration. The U.S.-Saudi relationship is mostly fueled by a mutual self-interest. The United States needs a stable supply of oil, the Saudis need a reliable consumer of oil and a military friend in a historically turbulent region. Saudi Arabia is central to the debate on the war on terror, and in achieving progress in the Middle East Peace process. The Saudi links to the Sept. 11 attacks are profound, with 15 of the 19 hijackers being Saudis and paying allegiance to terrorist leader Usama Bin Laden. The United States is also concerned about the Saudi role in the bloody turmoil in the Middle East. The Saudis have leaned on the Bush White House to extract more concessions from Israel, and top members of the Saudi royal family led a telethon to raise money for families of suicide bombers who carried out terror attacks against Israel. All of this has led Rand analysts to reassess the U.S.-Saudi role and say that Saudi Arabia is "the kernel of evil, the prime mover and most dangerous opponent of the Middle East." The Saudi prince blamed Jews and Israeli sympathizers for the article.

Hussein Threatens Israel

Anticipating an American attack on his country, Saddam Hussein has once again threatened to widen any war to include an attack on Israel, by playing the Palestinian terrorist card. Iraqi President Saddam Hussein threatened he would one day celebrate a victory over Israel with the Palestinians. As he spoke, about 15,000 members of the "Jerusalem Army" marched through Baghdad in a display of support for the president. Dressed in khaki uniforms and carrying Kalashikov rifles, the marchers bore photographs of Saddam and Palestinian flags. In the past week, the Iraqi government has organized several such demonstrations by the Jerusalem Army, a force of civilians that Saddam set up in 2000 with the aim of driving the Israelis out of Jerusalem and supporting the Palestinian uprising.

Islamic Warriors Near Christian Town

Aug. 8….(World Net)
Islamic Jihad forces are preparing to strike an Indonesian town where more than 65,000 Christians reside, according to a group that monitors persecution of Christians. The Christian community of Ranoncu Bridge on the island of Sulawesi told Washington, D.C.-based International Christian Concern yesterday that the Muslim militants are less than four miles from Tentena, a town that barely escaped an attack last November. Last fall local Christians and the Indonesian military engaged in a six-hour battle at Ranoncu Bridge that prevented Laskar Jihad forces from advancing toward Tentena. Laskar Jihad , a group that expresses allegiance to Osama bin Laden, has the stated aim of making Indonesia a strict Islamic nation. The group has escalated a conflict in Central Sulawesi that has taken more than 2,000 lives and waged a violent campaign against Christians in neighboring Maluku province, where at least 9,000 people have been killed since 1999. Indonesia has the largest Muslim population in the world, with more than 180 million.

Iraq Conflict Could Be Nuclear

Aug. 8….(FOJ)
The US Congress has been warned that President Bush's proposed attack on Iraq could escalate into a nuclear conflict. An assessment of Iraq's capabilities says that the US is unlikely to knock out many, if any, of President Saddam Hussein's mobile missile-launchers in a first wave of air-strikes. It raises the possibility of Baghdad hitting an Israeli city with a missile carrying biological agents, noting that Saddam is likely to use chemical and biological weapons, and has already threatened to nuke Israel. Israel's likely reaction would be nuclear ground bursts against every Iraqi city not already occupied by US-led coalition forces. Unlike the 1991 Gulf War, when Washington urged Israel not to retaliate against Iraqi missile strikes, Israeli leaders have maintained that they will strike back immediately this time.

Secretary Rumsfeld Has it Right!

Aug. 8….(FOJ)
U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld yesterday called into question whether Israel should turn over any more Yesha land (Judea, Samaria, and Gaza) to the Palestinian Authority. Rumsfeld stated, “There is no question that the Palestinian Authority has been involved in terrorist activities.” Speaking at a gathering of Pentagon officials, Rumsfeld acknowledged that Israel is not an occupying power in Yesha, but rather has a right to the land obtained in a defensive war of survival. "My feelings about the so-called occupied territories are that there was a war," said Rumsfeld referring to the 1967 Six-Day War. He added, "Israel urged neighboring countries not to get involved in it once it started. They all jumped in and they lost a lot of real estate to Israel because Israel prevailed in the conflict." Rumsfeld also said that the (so-called) “settlements” should not be the focus of Arab Israeli diplomacy but rather he said, “The real point is to find an effective interlocutor on the Arab side.” Rumsfeld's remarks come as a PA delegation lead by Saeb Erekat heads to Washington to meet with top level US officials. Rumfeld's comments directly contradict long-standing U.S. policy, which regards the West Bank and Gaza Strip as occupied territories, as well as the goals laid out by President Bush in his June 24 Middle East speech. Bush said at the time that "permanent occupation threatens Israel's identity and democracy," and that "Israeli settlement activity in the occupied territories must stop." The outspoken defense secretary has long been known as an ardent supporter of the hard-line policies of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. His comments served to illuminate the ongoing struggle within the White House over the proper balance the United States ought to demonstrate in trying to broker a Middle East peace agreement. Both Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney have argued that Israel's need for security against Palestinian terrorist attacks is paramount, and that the White House should not press Sharon to make any political or territorial concessions until all Palestinian violence is curbed. They also have argued that Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was too compromised by alleged ties to suicide bombers to continue as a peace partner, an assertion Rumsfeld repeated. But Secretary of State Colin Powell, has urged an approach that recognizes Palestinian aspirations for a state of their own. President Bush has been swayed back and forth by Rumsfeld and Cheney, versus Powell. He has demanded that Palestinians replace Arafat as their leader, and commit to reform, but thus far Mr. Bush has not legitimized Israel's capture of the West Bank and Gaza, but rather has pitched his tent on the side of establishing a new democratic Palestinian State.

US Still Considers Territories ”Occupied”!

Aug. 8….(Jerusalem Post)
The Bush administration, playing down remarks made by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made clear Wednesday that it still regards the West Bank and Gaza Strip as territories "occupied" by Israel. The clarification came after Rumsfeld said Tuesday that the "so-called occupied territories" were captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war after neighboring countries, despite warnings, "got involved and lost a lot of real estate." Daniel Kurtzer, the US ambassador to Israel, said yesterday that Rumsfeld was speaking only for himself and that his remarks did not signal a change in US policy. Secretary of State Colin Powell first vowed to help put an end to Israeli "occupation" in a speech in Louisville, Kentucky, in November.

Saudi Arabia Won't Allow U.S. Troops

Aug. 8…..(Washington Post)
Saudi Arabia has made clear to Washington, publicly and privately that the U.S. military will not be allowed to use the kingdom's soil in any way for an attack on Iraq, Foreign Minister Prince Saud said Wednesday. Saud said in an interview with The Associated Press that his country opposes any U.S. operation against Iraq "because we believe it is not needed, especially now that Iraq is moving to implement United Nations resolutions." For the government of Iraq, the leadership of Iraq, any change that happens there has to come from the Iraqi people. Saudi Arabia invited U.S. troops for the 1991 Gulf War to help defend the oil-rich nation against Iraqi forces.

Franklin Graham Speaks out on Islam

Aug. 8….(Washington Times)
The Rev. Franklin Graham concedes that he's not the diplomat his famous evangelist father is, and he doesn't mince words about Islam. I have many Muslim friends," he says on a visit to Washington, "but I want the people of this country to know that the god of Islam is not the Christian god. The god of Islam is not a father. The god of Christianity was the father of Jesus Christ. "There's a mood in this country that we'll believe a generic belief. That is not acceptable. Political correctness has run amok in this country." The 50-year-old evangelist, the fourth child of the Rev. Billy Graham, who has preached to more people than any man in history is making his dislike of certain Islamic practices known far and wide. Appearing on Fox News' "Hannity and Colmes," he said the Koran preaches violence and that Islamic extremism is "a greater threat than anyone's willing to admit." Mr. Graham said God had blessed the United States because of the nation's Christian heritage. "This country was not built by Hindus, nor Muslims, nor atheists," he said. "It was built by Christian men and women."

Laying The Groundwork For The “Messiah”

Aug. 8….(excerpt by: Rapture Ready)
Catholic and Jewish leaders have made a significant breakthrough in resolving the long-running dispute over the “Messiah.” One difference that separates Jews and Catholics is whether the Messiah is coming for the first or second time. Christians believe the Messiah, a Jew from Nazareth called Jesus came 2,000 years ago, and after dying and being resurrected, will someday return to redeem the world. The Catholic-Jewish leaders agreed that this dispute should be tabled until the Messiah arrives. When the Messiah comes, Jews and Christians “can ask him if this is his first coming or his second,” finally putting the issue to rest. The Vatican's top biblical scholars recently issued a report that for the first time in nearly 2,000 years apparently validating as legitimate the Jewish wait for the Messiah. Asked if Jews must, or should, acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah, Cardinal Ratzinger told an interviewer, “We believe that. The fact remains, however, that our Christian conviction is that Christ is also the Messiah of Israel.” But Fisher contends it's a major positive development. “If you put off the moment that Jews will come to recognize Jesus as the Messiah until the end of time, then we don't need to work or pray for the conversion of Jews to Christianity,” he said. “God already has the salvation of Jews figured out, and they accepted it on Sinai, so they are OK.” “Jews are already with the Father,” he continued. “We do not have a mission to the Jews, but only a mission with the Jews to the world. The Catholic Church will never again sanction an organization devoted to the conversion of the Jews. Rabbi Signer, a Reform rabbi said, “What's really new is the validation of the Jewish position as truth, that the Jewish waiting for the Messiah is a correct theological viewpoint. If the document says what we think, it is another very important theological step in the respect for Judaism as a living tradition.” This theological love-fest between Catholics and Jewish leaders is the perfect setup for the rise of the Antichrist.


The Palestinian Cabinet on Wednesday accepted Israel's proposal to begin withdrawing troops from some areas of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in exchange for security guarantees. The Cabinet's approval of the plan was preliminary, pending an Israeli-Palestinian security meeting later Wednesday during which details would be discussed, said Palestinian Planning Minister Nabil Shaath. The decision marked a possible opening for easing Israel's military presence in Palestinian areas and came as a senior Palestinian delegation left for talks with US Secretary of State Colin Powell in Washington. Israeli troops have been holding some Palestinian-run areas of Gaza since sometime after the outbreak of fighting nearly two years ago, and reoccupied seven of the West Bank's eight major towns and cities in June in an attempt to prevent attacks on Israelis. Under the withdrawal plan presented earlier this week by Israeli Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, troops would gradually begin withdrawing from Palestinian-ruled parts of Gaza and the West Bank town of Bethlehem, in exchange for Palestinian guarantees that no attacks would be launched from these areas. The Palestinian Cabinet on Wednesday endorsed the idea, even though some ministers had demanded that troops withdraw simultaneously from all areas. "There is preliminary approval for the Israeli security plan," said Shaath. Raanan Gissin, an adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, said that "the test will be whether they (the Palestinians) fulfill their part and take serious steps to fight terrorism." Three Palestinian Cabinet members headed to Washington for two days of talks with Powell and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice. The delegation included Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, Economics Minister Maher al Masri and the new interior minister, Abdel Razak Yehiyeh.


AUG. 7……(Koenig)
Palestinians said Tuesday that a senior Hamas man wanted by Israel was shot and killed by an IDF marksman in Khan Yunis in the Gaza Strip, Israel Radio reported. According to the report, Hussaan Hamdan was hit by the sharpshooter as he went up to the roof of his house. The sniper was stationed hundreds of meters away in the settlement of Ganei Tal. Hamdan was one of the heads of the military wing of Hamas, Izzedin el-Kassam. Hamdan was wounded last year when IAF helicopters fired a missile into his car, killing a second Hamas member. Hamdan was the son of Ahmed Hamdan a senior political leader in the Hamas


AUG. 6......(Koenig)
- U.S. fighter jets on Monday attacked an air defense command and control facility in southern Iraq in response to attempts to shoot down American and British warplanes patrolling the area, the U.S. military said. It was the 25th strike of the year by U.S. and British attack jets in northern and southern "no-fly zones" of Iraq, established after the 1991 Gulf War to protect minorities in the country from attack by President Saddam Hussein 's military.

Those tit-for-tat exchanges have increased in recent months amid mounting threats from President Bush to depose Saddam, accused by Washington of developing chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. The U.S. Central Command in Tampa, Florida, and officials at the Pentagon said Monday's attack occurred at about 9 a.m. Iraqi time against a command and control site 120 miles southwest of Baghdad.

All aircraft left the area safely and damage to the target was being assessed, according to the command, which has responsibility for U.S. military operations in the region. Iraq has charged that civilians have been killed several times this year in U.S. and British air strikes on civilian targets. The Central Command reiterated on Monday that "coalition aircraft never target civilian populations or infrastructure, and go to painstaking lengths to avoid injury to civilians and damage to civilian facilities."

Although speculation about a possible U.S. military invasion to remove Saddam from power has risen this year with growing verbal attacks on Saddam by the Bush administration, the U.S. president has stressed that he has not approved any plans to launch such an attack.

There are no current signs of a U.S. military buildup in the Gulf region. Experts testified at U.S. Senate hearings last week on the Iraq situation that as many as 250,000 troops and hundreds of warplanes may be needed to remove Saddam from power. Those private analysts along with a growing number of U.S. lawmakers, noting that allies in Europe and the Middle East have voiced opposition to an invasion, stressed the need to plan carefully for any political void in the region should Iraq's president be killed or otherwise deposed.


AUG 6........(Koenig)
— Israeli officials said Al Qaida has given the green light for the recruitment of Palestinians and the financing of attacks in both Israel and against Jewish targets abroad. The officials said Al Qaida is operating through the Hamas organization. Meanwhile, authorities have reported scores of intelligence alerts of suicide attacks over the last week. The Cabinet has been briefed on Al Qaida's efforts, officials said. They said Al Qaida has been given permission to recruit and organize insurgency cells in the Palestinian Authority, Middle East Newsline reported.

IDF troops capture Hamas commander behind Safed bus bombing

AUG 5…….(KOENIG)…….
IDF troops overnight Sunday captured Hamas commander Mazan Fukha, responsible for dispatching the suicide bomber who destroyed an Egged bus near Safed Sunday, killing nine and injuring 52. The attack was one of five terror operations in Israel and the West Bank that killed a total of 13 people and wounded scores more Sunday and early Monday. In the latest attack, a young couple was ambushed and killed near the West Bank settlement of Eli in the predawn hours Monday.

Fukha was apprehended in the West Bank town of Tubas together with two of his deputies. Last month the army received information that Fukha was planning to carry out a huge terror attack. Soldiers from the Golani Brigade had unsuccessfully tried capturing Fukha in the past. He had kept underground until Sunday's attack. Security forces were searching Monday for gunmen who killed Avi Volanski, 29 and his pregnant wife Avital, 27, and wounded their two-year-old son, ambushed early Monday as they were traveling on the Ramallah-Nablus road near their West Bank settlement of Eli. It was the fifth attack in a terror wave spanning less than 24 hours. The fatalities, in an ambush just after midnight, brought to 13 the number of people killed in terror attacks Sunday and early Monday.

Security officials said that the gunmen fled the scene of the attack. A wide manhunt was underway Monday morning, but there were no signs of the attackers. The Volanskis's eight-month-old son was also in the car at the time of the shooting, but was unhurt. A little-known Palestinian organization called the "the Martyrs of the Palestinian Popular Army," affiliated with Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's Fatah movement, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Earlier Sunday, eleven people were killed and more than 80 were wounded in four separate attacks which took place in the space of seven hours. In the first and most devastating of the attacks, nine people were killed and 52 were wounded when a suicide bomber blew himself up on an Egged bus filled with soldiers which was travelling near the northern town of Safed a short time before 9 A.M. Sunday morning.


A powerful explosion ripped apart a bus on Sunday morning near the northern town of Safed, killing at least 10 people and wounding more than 40, police and news reports said.

The blast occurred at about 8:45 a.m. local time, on Egged bus no. 361, at an intersection near Mount Meron, and the site of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai's burial site. It blew off the roof of the bus, and the vehicle then burst into flames, killing or wounding nearly everyone inside, witnesses said.

Northern Police chief Yaacov Borowsky said the attack was possibly the work of a suicide bomber, but that police were not ruling out the possibility that an explosive was placed on the bus.

Media reports said police were searching for two young women seen alighting the bus at a stop before it exploded. The bus had left the Haifa Central Bus Station early in the morning, packed with soldiers headed back to their bases, sources said. It wound its way through many Galilee villages, including Arab towns, on its way to Safed.

"I picked up four dead myself," Haim Ben-Shimon, a civilian who was nearby at the time of the blast, told Army Radio. "The bus is simply crushed. It looks as if the explosion happened in the center of the bus."

Another witness, Pinhas Cohen, said: "A soldier came out with his face and uniform covered with blood, and two Arabs from the nearby restaurant gave him first aid." Of the more than 50 wounded, nine were in serious condition at Sieff Hospital in Safed, officials said. Israel Radio said two were mortally wounded. Dr. Oscar Enbon, director of the Sieff Hospital said 26 of the wounded had reached the hospital. Many were suffering from burns, he said. The Hamas terror group claimed responsibility for the attack, in a statement issued on Al-Manar television in Lebanon, a Hizbullah station.

Hamas said this was the second in a series of attacks planned in retribution for Israel's assassination last month of bombing mastermind Saleh Shehadeh in the Gaza Strip. The first revenge attack was the bombing last week at Hebrew University in Jerusalem that killed seven people.

Earlier Sunday, the IDF foiled another attempted attack by Hamas, killing a gunman off the coast of Gaza as he headed to the settlement of Dugit. The government held the Palestinian Authority responsible for the bombing. "This Palestinian terror must be uprooted and Israel will not relent in its pursuit of, and war against, Palestinian terror," said David Baker, an official in the office of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

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