Jewishupdates's Blog

January 25, 2010

Jewish Inmate Convicted Of Murder To Be Executed In Florida

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 2:10 am

Jewish Inmate Convicted Of Murder To Be Executed In Florida

Gov. Charlie Crist has signed a death warrant for Martin (Michoel Yechiel) Grossman, a Jewish inmate,convicted of murdering a Pinellas County wildlife officer in 1984.

Grossman is scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection on Feb. 16 at 6 p.m.

Grossman was 19 years old when he and a friend went to a wooded area in Pinellas County on Dec. 13, 1984 to shoot a stolen handgun.

26-year-old Florida Wildlife Officer Margaret Park interrupted them and Grossman pleaded with her not to report him for having the gun and being outside Pasco County, both of which were violations of his probation for burglary.

Grossman struck Park on the back of the head when she tried to radio for help and his accomplice beat her.

Grossman, who was a foot taller and 100 pounds heavier than Park, wrestled her gun away from her and shot her in the back of the head.

Last week, Grossman and his attorney, Richard Kiley, appeared before Judge Joseph Bulone asking to introduce evidence on Grossman’s mental state at the time of the killing.

Kiley said Grossman was sentenced by a jury who knew nothing about his mental state.

Bulone denied the petition.

YWN spoke with Rabbi Menachem Katz of the Aleph Institute, who has been visiting Grossman for the past 15 years in prison, most recently as this past Thursday.

Rabbi Katz said his most recent visit was an emotional, and traumatic experience for Grossman – who knows that he has a scheduled date to be executed. The visit lasted two hours, and was held at a special cell called “Death Watch”. Although Grossman understands that he took a life by murdering Margaret Park, he feels that he was not treated fairly. At the time of the murder he and his friend were high on mind-altering drugs (PCP, crystal meth, cocaine & other drugs), and was only 19-years-old. No one gets a death warrant signed for them under such circumstances.

Another point worth questioning is why Florida Governor Charlie Crist suddenly decided to sign the death warrant. There are hundreds of hardened criminals on death row, and the Governor never signed Grossman’s warrant for the past 4 years. Why suddenly did he decide to do this?

Grossman is currently the only Florida inmate with a signed death warrant, and placed onto death watch.

Rabbi Katz tells YWN that Grossman is “holding strong”, and tries to practice Judaism as much as he can, and put on Tefillin at his last visit. He has requested a Jewish burial, but Rabbi Katz of the Aleph Institute are hopeful that he won’t need a burial, and the Governor will have a change of heart – allowing Grossman to live out his sentence behind bars.

“This is Pikuach Nefashos Mammish,” Rabbi Katz told YWN. People are urged to contact the governors office and plead to have himchange his mind.

CONTACT INFO FOR FLORIDA GOVERNOR CHARLIE CRIST:

Office of Governor Charlie Crist
State of Florida
The Capitol
400 S. Monroe St.
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001
Charlie.Crist@MyFlorida.com

Telephone:
Citizen Services Hotline: (850) 488-4441
Executive Office of the Governor Switchboard: (850) 488-7146 [Office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time]
Fax: (850) 487-0801

For individuals with hearing loss or speech disability:
1-850-922-7795 (TTY)

(Dov Gordon – YWN)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45861

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January 24, 2010

A7News: Arab Report: Syria Calling Up Reserves

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 3:04 pm

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1. Arab Report: Syria Calling Up Reserves
by Gil Ronen Report: Syria Calls Up Reserves

Tensions have escalated along the Israeli-Lebanese border and Syria has begun calling up troops from its Fourth Reserve, sources told the pan-Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat.

The newspaper, printed on four continents, reports that the Israeli military has been carrying out drills on Israel’s northern frontier, as the second anniversary of the death of senior Hizbullah commander Imad Mughniyeh approaches. Mughniyeh was killed when a car bomb exploded in Damascus on February 13, 2008.

“Well-informed Lebanese sources” told the newspaper that Hizbullah is on a state of alert in the face of IDF “military maneuvers.” The sources added that Hizbullah is concerned Israel may launch a surprise attack on its bases and posts. "Israel has accustomed us to aggression and we are used to being vigilant and on the lookout all the time. That is what we are doing,” a source said.

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, in Paris, said that “France does not expect that there will be an Israeli military offensive” at present. However, he expressed concern that “some Iranian leaders” might try to cause escalation in southern Lebanon.

‘Heading for Battle’

"Without a doubt, we are heading for another round [of battle with Hizbulla in the north," Cabinet Minister Yossi Peled said Saturday. Peled, who was the head of Israel’s Northern Command, said at an event in Be’er Sheva that "no one knows" when a conflict will occur, “but it’s clear that it will happen."

The Prime Minister’s office issued a response contradicting Peled’s remark. "Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu wishes to make clear that the State of Israel has no desire for any conflict with Lebanon,” it said.

The current Head of Northen Command, Maj.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkut, called the reports about tension on the northern border “virtual reality.”
Comment on this story

2. Signs of Oil in the Negev
by Hillel Fendel Signs of Oil in the Negev

A joint venture near the Negev city of Arad has produced “preliminary indications” of an oil reserve, the drillers announced.

The venture is a partnership of Zerach Oil Exploration Ltd., which owns 50%, and Avner Oil Ltd. and Delek Drilling Ltd, which own 25% each. The three companies notified the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) on Sunday that they had found oil at the Tzuk Tamrur 4 oil exploration well, west of the Dead Sea. They emphasized that they do not yet know if the quantities found are commercial.

The Tzuk Tamrur 4 drilling began three months ago, after seismic studies indicated that 6.6 million barrels of high-quality oil could be found there. The drilling has reached a depth of 2,040 meters, and the partners plan to keep on going until they reach 2,150 meters.

"When the drilling is complete,” the partners stated, “electrical logs [a form of underground testing – ed will be conducted, which will take several days, after which an announcement will be made, including whether the partners decide if it is worthwhile to carry out well production tests."

Just last month, the Givot Olam Oil Exploration company announced it had found a very large amount of oil and gas below the city of Rosh HaAyin in central Israel. Recently, Noble Energy said it had discovered more than 3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the Mediterranean Sea, about 90 kilometers from Haifa.
Comment on this story

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3. US Terror Blacklist Whitewashes Hamas, Enables Funding
by Shimon Cohen and Gil Ronen US Terror List Whitewashes Hamas

The United States Treasury has taken all but one member of Hamas off the international list of terrorists, thus enabling funds from the European Union to enter Hamas-controlled Gaza.

It is an open secret that large sums of money from the EU flow into Gaza in the guise of humanitarian aid and salaries for officials, but are actually funneled into the coffers of Hamas, which controls Gaza with an iron grip. This method of transferring funds into terrorists’ hands could have been blocked by an international lawsuit, but according to journalist Avi Tarango, the United States Treasury has made this impossible by removing all but one Hamas man – Deputy Chairman of the Political Bureau, Musa Abu Marzouk – from the list of international terrorists.

The updated terrorist list, published last week, takes up 443 pages. However, according to Tarango, who went over the list, none of the tens of thousands of people who form Hamas is mentioned – other than Abu Marzuk, who resides in Damascus. The terrorist list is meant for distribution in the world banking system, where the transfer of funds to anyone on the list is prohibited.

Cleared for Funding

Abu Marzouk is listed as having been born in Gaza on February 9, 1951, and as bearing an Egyptian passport with the number 92/664. “While branches of Hamas appear in the list under different names, such as ‘The Students of Ayash,’ ‘The Muslim Brotherhood in Gaza,’ ‘The Iz A-Din El-Kassam Battalions,’ the rest of Hamas’s men do not appear on the list at all,” Tarango said.

"Musa Abu-Marzouk’s presence on the list means that whoever tries to transfer money to him personally will be rejected by the world banking system and be accused of funding terrorism, but the transfer of funds to any other Hamas man will not arouse suspicion,” he explained.

According to published reports and other sources, the journalist said, the EU sends millions of Euros every month to cover the salaries of 77,000 employees of the Palestinian Authority and about 70,000 recipients of welfare aid in Gaza.

“EU laws define Hamas as a terror organization and therefore the EU people need to verify on a name-by-name basis that none of the people receiving salaries and support is a terrorist,” Tarango said. “This is done by the EU’s cash transfer mechanism, PEGASE, which verifies that none of the recipients of salaries are members of Hamas’s police force or activists of the military wing of Hamas, by comparing the names as received from the PA treasury department with the list of international terror activists. However, since the newly-updated list contains no Hamas officials except for Marzouk, the European check will find nothing and the funds for Gaza salaries will be transferred in whole to the Gaza banks.”
Comment on this story

4. Barak: NIS 25 Million to Gaza, Every Year
by Hillel Fendel Barak: NIS 25m to Gaza, Annually

Defense Minister Ehud Barak has approved, as a "humanitarian" gesture, the annual transfer of 25 million shekels to Gaza. Despite the state of war that essentially exists between the Hamas regime in Gaza and Israel, Haaretz reports that the money will go to Gazans who are eligible for Israeli pension or National Insurance payments.

Israel has declared the Hamas regime as a “hostile” and “terrorist” entity. However, the government has sought ways to transfer the money to those who are technically deserving of it, and has now apparently found it. The transfer of the funds to PA banks in Ramallah, which will send it on to Gaza banks in the names of the beneficiaries, has been approved by the Finance, Justice and Defense Ministries, as well as other Israeli bodies. Hamas has not yet given its assent to the new arrangement, however.

All banks in Israel, except for the governmental Bank of Israel, have cut off their contacts with Gaza. Israel has also long demanded that the international community not transfer money to the Hamas terrorist regime there.

It was learned last week that Israel had paid the United Nations $10.5 million “as a goodwill gesture” for damages caused to UN buildings and property in Gaza during Israel’s anti-terrorism Operation Cast Lead last year.
Comment on this story

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5. Netanyahu: ‘No Desire For Conflict With Lebanon’
by Malkah Fleisher PM: Lebanon War Not 'Inevitable'

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s office responded Saturday to media reports that Minister-without-Portfolio Yossi Peled (Likud) said a military conflict between Israel and Lebanon is "inevitable."

"Without a doubt, we are heading for another round [of battle with Hizbulla in the north," said Peled at a Saturday event in the Negev city of Beer Sheva. "No one knows when, but it’s clear that it will happen."

Peled was the former General of Israel’s Northern Command.

The Prime Minister’s office issued a response contradicting Peled’s remark. "Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is making it clear that the State of Israel has no desire for any conflict with Lebanon. The face of Israel is set toward peace with her neighbors, according to the Prime Minister."

At the event, Peled added that "Israel’s primary goal is to ensure the existence of the Jewish state forever," he said. "Lebanon is the only country in the region in which there is a military organization that is not part of the state. It seems we are heading toward a confrontation in the north, but no one can tell when it will happen".

Also Saturday, The Washington Post reported that the powerful Lebanese terror organization, Hizbullah, had moved long-range missile launching pads into areas of northern Lebanon and the Bekaa valley, despite a UN presence in those areas.

Hizbullah has been armed and funded in the past by Iran under the leadership of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The IDF reports that the terror group has Iranian-made Fajr missiles in their arsenal, the same kind of rockets used against Israel 3 and a half years ago in the Second Lebanon War.
Comment on this story

6. Scientists Discover ‘Relapse Gene’ in Children’s Leukemia
by Hana Levi Julian 'Relapse Gene' ID'd in Leukemia

Researchers at the University of Melbourne and the Royal Melbourne Hospital have achieved a major breakthrough in the fight for to cure T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or T-ALL. This form of cancer affects mostly children and teenagers, although adults are attacked, rarely, by the disease as well.

In Israel, approximately 45 new cases of T-ALL are diagnosed each year (a statistic quoted in a 1998 study published by O. Blau in the medical journal, Leukemia Research (Vol. 22, Issue 6)). The disease accounts for some 80 percent of all childhood leukemias in the Jewish State.

According to a study published last week in the journal Science, the LMO2 gene, with its stem-cell-like properties, was identified as that which was able to recover its equilibrium and reassert its ability to grow following the traditional cancer-killing treatments.

Australian research leader Dr. David Curtis said the team he worked with had managed to identify the LMO2 gene that resembled a stem cell, remaining hidden when the cancer appeared to have been eradicated. The stem cell-like gene would eventually reappear – immune to the chemotherapy, radiotherapy and bone marrow transplants used to kill the disease in other cases – and cause life-threatening relapse in 25 percent of cases.

The LMO2 gene also contains a cysteine-rich, two-LIM (Lin 11, Isl-1 & Mec-3) domains’ protein called rhombotin-like 1, known by the same name, “LMO2”.

Principal investigator Dr. Matthew McCormack noted that the cellular origins of this particular type of leukemia “are not well understood… Our discovery that these cells are similar to normal stem cells explains why they are capable of surviving for long periods. It also explains why they are remarkably resistant to treatment."

The researchers are presently working on creating medications to eradicate those cells.

“We can now study it, work out how it is resistant to normal chemotherapy and radiation, and work out better ways to kill those cells, so we can cure not 75 percent of children, but all children,” Curtis explained.

McCormack added that some of the work is also being focused on the thymus cells in hopes of reducing the length and toxicity of the treatment and preventing relapses.

The thymus, a small organ in the upper chest, protects the human body against infections, making it significant in leukemia and other diseases that involve the immune system. The research team discovered that 99 percent of the cells of the thymus gland were destroyed during radiation therapy.
Comment on this story

7. Holocaust Cabinet Meeting: “World is Obligated to Jewish State"
by Hillel Fendel Cabinet Meeting in Shoah Shadow

The government has dedicated today’s meeting to the memory of the six million Jews starved, tortured and massacred in the Holocaust. This Wednesday, the United Nations and at least 20 countries will mark International Holocaust Day.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, speaking at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting, said, “I hope the United Nations will remember what happened when the Jews did not have a state – and the privilege and obligation of the international community to defend the Jewish State’s existence.”

The date of January 27 was chosen for this purpose in 2005 because it was the day, in 1945, that the Russian Army liberated the Nazis’ Auschwitz death camp. Germany, Britain and some other countries commemorated Holocaust Day on this date even before the UN adopted it.

Former Israel Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, the Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv, who survived the Holocaust as a child, participated in the special Cabinet session. Rabbi Lau also serves as Chairman of Yad VaShem.

Netanyahu displayed a photograph of a survivor holding her great-granddaughter’s hand. The survivor’s tattooed number is clearly visible on her arm, and the photo will be displayed at the UN as well.

“This is the essence of the history of Zionism,” Netanyahu said.

On Wednesday, a special ceremony will be held at Auschwitz, where about one million Jews were murdered and massacred. Among the participants will be President Shimon Peres, Rabbi Lau, the president and prime minister of Poland, and the Chief Rabbis of Poland and Lodz.

Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest of the German concentration camps, was named for the two towns the camp in and around which the camp was built; the Germans essentially destroyed the small Polish village of Birkenau to make way for it. Nazi leader Heinrich Himmler designated Auschwitz as the site of the "final solution of the Jewish question in Europe," and it received transport trains of Jews from all over Nazi-occupied Europe for 30 months, until late 1944.

Some 1.1 million people, 90% of them Jews, were killed in the camp’s gas chambers or died of starvation, forced labor, disease, medical experiment, shooting, beatings, and the like.
Comment on this story

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A7News: Arab Report: Syria Calling Up Reserves

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 2:25 pm

logo.jpgShevat 9, 5770 / Sunday, Jan. 24 ’10

Subscribe to this Daily Israel Report – http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Subscribe

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Headlines

  1. Arab Report: Syria Calling Up Reserves
  2. Signs of Oil in the Negev
  3. US Terror Blacklist Whitewashes Hamas, Enables Funding
  4. Barak: NIS 25 Million to Gaza, Every Year
  5. Netanyahu: ‘No Desire For Conflict With Lebanon’
  6. Scientists Discover ‘Relapse Gene’ in Children’s Leukemia
  7. Holocaust Cabinet Meeting: “World is Obligated to Jewish State"
  8. Israeli Withdrawal from Ghajar Fought By Villagers, MKs

1. Arab Report: Syria Calling Up Reserves

by Gil Ronen

Tensions have escalated along the Israeli-Lebanese border and Syria has begun calling up troops from its Fourth Reserve, sources told the pan-Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat.

The newspaper, printed on four continents, reports that the Israeli military has been carrying out drills on Israel’s northern frontier, as the second anniversary of the death of senior Hizbullah commander Imad Mughniyeh approaches. Mughniyeh was killed when a car bomb exploded in Damascus on February 13, 2008.

“Well-informed Lebanese sources” told the newspaper that Hizbullah is on a state of alert in the face of IDF “military maneuvers.” The sources added that Hizbullah is concerned Israel may launch a surprise attack on its bases and posts. "Israel has accustomed us to aggression and we are used to being vigilant and on the lookout all the time. That is what we are doing,” a source said.

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, in Paris, said that “France does not expect that there will be an Israeli military offensive” at present. However, he expressed concern that “some Iranian leaders” might try to cause escalation in southern Lebanon.

‘Heading for Battle’
"Without a doubt, we are heading for another round [of battle with Hizbullah] in the north," Cabinet Minister Yossi Peled said Saturday. Peled, who was the head of Israel’s Northern Command, said at an event in Be’er Sheva that "no one knows" when a conflict will occur, “but it’s clear that it will happen."

The Prime Minister’s office issued a response contradicting Peled’s remark. "Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu wishes to make clear that the State of Israel has no desire for any conflict with Lebanon,” it said.

The current Head of Northen Command, Maj.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkut, called the reports about tension on the northern border “virtual reality.”

Post Comment

2. Signs of Oil in the Negev

by Hillel Fendel

A joint venture near the Negev city of Arad has produced “preliminary indications” of an oil reserve, the drillers announced.

The venture is a partnership of Zerach Oil Exploration Ltd., which owns 50%, and Avner Oil Ltd. and Delek Drilling Ltd, which own 25% each. The three companies notified the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) on Sunday that they had found oil at the Tzuk Tamrur 4 oil exploration well, west of the Dead Sea. They emphasized that they do not yet know if the quantities found are commercial.

The Tzuk Tamrur 4 drilling began three months ago, after seismic studies indicated that 6.6 million barrels of high-quality oil could be found there. The drilling has reached a depth of 2,040 meters, and the partners plan to keep on going until they reach 2,150 meters.

"When the drilling is complete,” the partners stated, “electrical logs [a form of underground testing – ed.] will be conducted, which will take several days, after which an announcement will be made, including whether the partners decide if it is worthwhile to carry out well production tests."

Just last month, the Givot Olam Oil Exploration company announced it had found a very large amount of oil and gas below the city of Rosh HaAyin in central Israel. Recently, Noble Energy said it had discovered more than 3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the Mediterranean Sea, about 90 kilometers from Haifa.

Post Comment

3. US Terror Blacklist Whitewashes Hamas, Enables Funding

by Shimon Cohen and Gil Ronen

The United States Treasury has taken all but one member of Hamas off the international list of terrorists, thus enabling funds from the European Union to enter Hamas-controlled Gaza.

It is an open secret that large sums of money from the EU flow into Gaza in the guise of humanitarian aid and salaries for officials, but are actually funneled into the coffers of Hamas, which controls Gaza with an iron grip. This method of transferring funds into terrorists’ hands could have been blocked by an international lawsuit, but according to journalist Avi Tarango, the United States Treasury has made this impossible by removing all but one Hamas man – Deputy Chairman of the Political Bureau, Musa Abu Marzouk – from the list of international terrorists.

The updated terrorist list, published last week, takes up 443 pages. However, according to Tarango, who went over the list, none of the tens of thousands of people who form Hamas is mentioned – other than Abu Marzuk, who resides in Damascus. The terrorist list is meant for distribution in the world banking system, where the transfer of funds to anyone on the list is prohibited.

Cleared for Funding
Abu Marzouk is listed as having been born in Gaza on February 9, 1951, and as bearing an Egyptian passport with the number 92/664. “While branches of Hamas appear in the list under different names, such as ‘The Students of Ayash,’ ‘The Muslim Brotherhood in Gaza,’ ‘The Iz A-Din El-Kassam Battalions,’ the rest of Hamas’s men do not appear on the list at all,” Tarango said.

"Musa Abu-Marzouk’s presence on the list means that whoever tries to transfer money to him personally will be rejected by the world banking system and be accused of funding terrorism, but the transfer of funds to any other Hamas man will not arouse suspicion,” he explained.

According to published reports and other sources, the journalist said, the EU sends millions of Euros every month to cover the salaries of 77,000 employees of the Palestinian Authority and about 70,000 recipients of welfare aid in Gaza.

“EU laws define Hamas as a terror organization and therefore the EU people need to verify on a name-by-name basis that none of the people receiving salaries and support is a terrorist,” Tarango said. “This is done by the EU’s cash transfer mechanism, PEGASE, which verifies that none of the recipients of salaries are members of Hamas’s police force or activists of the military wing of Hamas, by comparing the names as received from the PA treasury department with the list of international terror activists. However, since the newly-updated list contains no Hamas officials except for Marzouk, the European check will find nothing and the funds for Gaza salaries will be transferred in whole to the Gaza banks.”

Post Comment

4. Barak: NIS 25 Million to Gaza, Every Year

by Hillel Fendel

Defense Minister Ehud Barak has approved, as a "humanitarian" gesture, the annual transfer of 25 million shekels to Gaza. Despite the state of war that essentially exists between the Hamas regime in Gaza and Israel, Haaretz reports that the money will go to Gazans who are eligible for Israeli pension or National Insurance payments.

Israel has declared the Hamas regime as a “hostile” and “terrorist” entity. However, the government has sought ways to transfer the money to those who are technically deserving of it, and has now apparently found it. The transfer of the funds to PA banks in Ramallah, which will send it on to Gaza banks in the names of the beneficiaries, has been approved by the Finance, Justice and Defense Ministries, as well as other Israeli bodies. Hamas has not yet given its assent to the new arrangement, however.

All banks in Israel, except for the governmental Bank of Israel, have cut off their contacts with Gaza. Israel has also long demanded that the international community not transfer money to the Hamas terrorist regime there.

It was learned last week that Israel had paid the United Nations $10.5 million “as a goodwill gesture” for damages caused to UN buildings and property in Gaza during Israel’s anti-terrorism Operation Cast Lead last year.

Post Comment

5. Netanyahu: ‘No Desire For Conflict With Lebanon’

by Malkah Fleisher

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s office responded Saturday to media reports that Minister-without-Portfolio Yossi Peled (Likud) said a military conflict between Israel and Lebanon is "inevitable."

"Without a doubt, we are heading for another round [of battle with Hizbullah] in the north," said Peled at a Saturday event in the Negev city of Beer Sheva. "No one knows when, but it’s clear that it will happen."

Peled was the former General of Israel’s Northern Command.

The Prime Minister’s office issued a response contradicting Peled’s remark. "Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is making it clear that the State of Israel has no desire for any conflict with Lebanon. The face of Israel is set toward peace with her neighbors, according to the Prime Minister."

At the event, Peled added that "Israel’s primary goal is to ensure the existence of the Jewish state forever," he said. "Lebanon is the only country in the region in which there is a military organization that is not part of the state. It seems we are heading toward a confrontation in the north, but no one can tell when it will happen".

Also Saturday, The Washington Post reported that the powerful Lebanese terror organization, Hizbullah, had moved long-range missile launching pads into areas of northern Lebanon and the Bekaa valley, despite a UN presence in those areas.

Hizbullah has been armed and funded in the past by Iran under the leadership of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The IDF reports that the terror group has Iranian-made Fajr missiles in their arsenal, the same kind of rockets used against Israel 3 and a half years ago in the Second Lebanon War.

Post Comment

6. Scientists Discover ‘Relapse Gene’ in Children’s Leukemia

by Hana Levi Julian

Researchers at the University of Melbourne and the Royal Melbourne Hospital have achieved a major breakthrough in the fight for to cure T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or T-ALL. This form of cancer affects mostly children and teenagers, although adults are attacked, rarely, by the disease as well.

In Israel, approximately 45 new cases of T-ALL are diagnosed each year (a statistic quoted in a 1998 study published by O. Blau in the medical journal, Leukemia Research (Vol. 22, Issue 6)). The disease accounts for some 80 percent of all childhood leukemias in the Jewish State.

According to a study published last week in the journal Science, the LMO2 gene, with its stem-cell-like properties, was identified as that which was able to recover its equilibrium and reassert its ability to grow following the traditional cancer-killing treatments.

Australian research leader Dr. David Curtis said the team he worked with had managed to identify the LMO2 gene that resembled a stem cell, remaining hidden when the cancer appeared to have been eradicated. The stem cell-like gene would eventually reappear – immune to the chemotherapy, radiotherapy and bone marrow transplants used to kill the disease in other cases – and cause life-threatening relapse in 25 percent of cases.

The LMO2 gene also contains a cysteine-rich, two-LIM (Lin 11, Isl-1 & Mec-3) domains’ protein called rhombotin-like 1, known by the same name, “LMO2”.

Principal investigator Dr. Matthew McCormack noted that the cellular origins of this particular type of leukemia “are not well understood… Our discovery that these cells are similar to normal stem cells explains why they are capable of surviving for long periods. It also explains why they are remarkably resistant to treatment."

The researchers are presently working on creating medications to eradicate those cells.

“We can now study it, work out how it is resistant to normal chemotherapy and radiation, and work out better ways to kill those cells, so we can cure not 75 percent of children, but all children,” Curtis explained.

McCormack added that some of the work is also being focused on the thymus cells in hopes of reducing the length and toxicity of the treatment and preventing relapses.

The thymus, a small organ in the upper chest, protects the human body against infections, making it significant in leukemia and other diseases that involve the immune system. The research team discovered that 99 percent of the cells of the thymus gland were destroyed during radiation therapy.

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7. Holocaust Cabinet Meeting: “World is Obligated to Jewish State"

by Hillel Fendel

The government has dedicated today’s meeting to the memory of the six million Jews starved, tortured and massacred in the Holocaust. This Wednesday, the United Nations and at least 20 countries will mark International Holocaust Day.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, speaking at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting, said, “I hope the United Nations will remember what happened when the Jews did not have a state – and the privilege and obligation of the international community to defend the Jewish State’s existence.”

The date of January 27 was chosen for this purpose in 2005 because it was the day, in 1945, that the Russian Army liberated the Nazis’ Auschwitz death camp. Germany, Britain and some other countries commemorated Holocaust Day on this date even before the UN adopted it.

Former Israel Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, the Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv, who survived the Holocaust as a child, participated in the special Cabinet session. Rabbi Lau also serves as Chairman of Yad VaShem.

Netanyahu displayed a photograph of a survivor holding her great-granddaughter’s hand. The survivor’s tattooed number is clearly visible on her arm, and the photo will be displayed at the UN as well.

“This is the essence of the history of Zionism,” Netanyahu said.

On Wednesday, a special ceremony will be held at Auschwitz, where about one million Jews were murdered and massacred. Among the participants will be President Shimon Peres, Rabbi Lau, the president and prime minister of Poland, and the Chief Rabbis of Poland and Lodz.

Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest of the German concentration camps, was named for the two towns the camp in and around which the camp was built; the Germans essentially destroyed the small Polish village of Birkenau to make way for it. Nazi leader Heinrich Himmler designated Auschwitz as the site of the "final solution of the Jewish question in Europe," and it received transport trains of Jews from all over Nazi-occupied Europe for 30 months, until late 1944.

Some 1.1 million people, 90% of them Jews, were killed in the camp’s gas chambers or died of starvation, forced labor, disease, medical experiment, shooting, beatings, and the like.

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8. Israeli Withdrawal from Ghajar Fought By Villagers, MKs

by Malkah Fleisher

Knesset Members of the National Union party will be joining Deputy Minister for Regional Development MK Ayoub Kara for a visit to the village of Ghajar on Sunday. Kara (Likud) and the National Union party members will plant trees in the northern and southern parts of the village in order to raise public awareness of the State of Israel’s planned withdrawal from the northern part of the town.

In recent days, the United Nations has expressed its interest in "redoubl[ing]" attempts to provoke Israel to withdraw from the northern part of Ghajar, which Israel annexed in 1967. In 2000, the IDF pulled out of northern Ghajar, but re-entered in 2006 as part of the Second Lebanon War. The United Nations aims to place northern Ghajar in the hands of Syria.

Ghajar is inhabited by Alawite Muslims, a minority sect of Shi’ite Muslims who hold an eclectic array of beliefs largely drawing from Islam, but also including some Christian and some secret beliefs.

The National Union opposes withdrawal and has expressed fear of a humanitarian and security disaster if the pullout takes place. Villagers have said they want to remain residents of Israel, and recently held marathon meetings with the President, Prime Minister, Defense Minister, and various ministers and Knesset members in an effort to garner support and prevent the withdrawal.

Ghajar’s Mukhtar (village leader) says his village will fight – to the death – to keep the town together. "We will not allow a fence to separate between brothers, between a father and his son, and tear the heart of the village to pieces," he said. "We will fight for the unity of the village until death."

Deputy Minister Kara, who is a member of Israel’s Druze community, invited the National Union MKs. "Withdrawal from Ghajar would cause a humanitarian disaster and a serious deterioration of security," Kara said. "The villagers vehemently refuse the withdrawal and Israel must not abandon them and repeat the mistake it made with Rafah on the southern border."

Lebanese newspaper A-Nahar reported at the end of 2009 that the IDF will withdraw troops from the northern part of the city at the end of next month. According to the paper, the decision was made following talks between Israel, the United Nations and Lebanon with the collaboration of the United States. If Israel pulls out, 12 UNIFIL soldiers and four Lebanese soldiers will be deployed in the field.

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Rahm Emanuel Warned Not To Make Son’s Bar Mitzvah In Israel

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 2:20 pm

Rahm Emanuel Warned Not To Make Son’s Bar Mitzvah In Israel

Chevron activists Baruch Marzel and Itamar Ben-Givir, who also serve as parliamentary aides to MK (Ichud HaLeumi) Dr. Michael Ben-Ari, have sent a letter to White House Chief of Staff Rom Emanuel suggesting he celebrate his son’s bar mitzvah elsewhere, not at the Kosel as reports indicate he plans to do.

In their letter they quote Maseches Avos, in which we learn a child reaching bar mitzvah is responsible for adherence to mitzvos, stating that his example and observance of mitzvos to date is as far from what the Torah demands “as East and West”, and even worse, that “he is a Hellenist, working against Israel and Eretz Yisrael”.

They point out that “to our sorrow? during the last year, President Barak Obama’s tenure in the White House, “You have worked against the State of Israel and the Jewish People”. They remind Emanuel of his recent comment to Israel’s consul general to Los Angeles, in which he is quoted as saying “I have had it with the Israelis”.

“You are not the first Jew in history trying to advance himself at the expense of his people. There were traitors before you such as Josephus Flavius and others, who in all likelihood also celebrated their bar mitzvah but we remember them as traitors, seeking riches and honor, at the expense of their people.

“Unlike the Government of Israel, we will not bow and participate with all those seeking to hurt the Jewish People”, promising if Emanuel comes to Yerushalayim to mark his son’s bar mitzvah, he will be met and escorted by protests “as is fitting and not with candies and flowers”.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45762

New Bin Laden Tape Warns US Of More Attacks

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 2:13 pm

New Bin Laden Tape Warns US Of More Attacks

A new audio tape allegedly from al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden claims responsibility for an attempt to blow up a plane en route to Michigan on X-Mas Day and warns the United States of more attacks.

The tape, which aired on the Arabic-language news Web site Al-Jazeera on Sunday, says “the United States will not dream of enjoying safety until we live it in reality in Palestine.”

The tape continues: “It is not fair to enjoy that kind of life while our brothers in Gaza live in the worst of miseries.”

White House senior adviser David Axelrod told CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that while there was no immediate confirmation that the message was authentic, it “contains the same hollow justification for the slaughter of innocent people.”

In another section of the audio tape that Al-Jazeera broadcast, the voice says: “God willing our attacks will continue as long as you support the Israelis and may peace be on those who follow guidance.”

Bin Laden also claims responsibility for the foiled attack on Delta flight 253 in December.

“The message intended to be sent to you was through the hero fighter Omar Farouq, may God release him, confirming an earlier message that the [September] 11th heroes delivered to you and it was repeated before and after [that event],” he says.

A security expert said there’s a possibility bin Laden did not know about the attempted attack in December and al Qaeda branches may be using it to prove themselves to the group’s leadership.

Sunday’s message would be bin Laden’s first in seven months. In 2009, he had six messages. The last one, on September 25, was “to the European people.”

(Source: CNN)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45768

Maran Rav Chaim Kanievsky Meets With New EL AL Boss

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 1:45 pm

Maran Rav Chaim Kanievsky Meets With New EL AL Boss

Former IAF commander Major-General (reserves) Eliezer Shkedy visited Maran Rav Chaim Kanievsky upon assuming his new position, director-general of El Al.

Rav Kanievsky stated that by the merit of shmiras shabbos and kashrus, passengers will enjoy a double dose of siyata d’shmaiya flying El Al. Ladaat reports.

During the 20-minute meeting, Maran explained that all Jews, especially the frum community, should prefer El Al because of the kashrus and shmiras shabbos, and this is an advantage as mentioned above.

Shkedy detailed some of the advantages of El Al, as an Israeli company, adding there are many airlines in the world but only El Al is Jewish and exhibits pride over the fact that is the Jewish People’s airline, adding he expects Jews to prefer El Al when traveling.

It was clear the Rav stressed the matter of adherence to shabbos and kashrus, for as the meeting ended the Rav repeated his words, emphasizing that shmiras shabbos and kashrus will bring the double bracha. A number of senior company officials accompanied the new director-general to the Rav’s home.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45747

White House Nightmare Persists

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 12:02 am

White House Nightmare Persists

The following is an article by the Financial Times: At the end of Barack Obama’s worst week since taking power a year ago, the US president’s fortunes look set only to deteriorate over the coming days. Following the shock defeat of the Democratic candidate in Massachusetts on Tuesday, a move that deprived the president of his 60-seat super-majority in the Senate and left his legislative agenda in tatters, Mr Obama has just four days to reboot the system.

The US president had originally delayed next week’s State of the Union address to Congress in the hope he would get his signature healthcare reform bill enacted in time. That prospect, already waning, was killed dead by the voters in Massachusetts. A growing number of Democrats believe the nine-month effort could collapse altogether.

The death of the healthcare effort would rob Mr Obama of what he had hoped would be the centrepiece of his first State of the Union message. “It now looks extremely difficult, if not impossible, to get anything resembling a broad healthcare bill out of Congress,” said Scott Lilley, a senior fellow at the liberal Centre for American Progress, the think-tank that is closest to the White House. “In his State of the Union, Obama has to slim down his ambitions. It should be short and simple and focus on jobs.”

However, even a more modest agenda looks tough for Mr Obama now. Believing their strategy of total opposition was vindicated by the voters last Tuesday, Republicans are in even less of a mood to co-operate with Democrats than before. The difference is that with 41 seats in the Senate they are in a position to block almost anything Mr Obama proposes – including the Wall Street regulatory measures he announced on Thursday.

“Obama has to decide whether he wants to be a transformational president, which looks optimistic at this stage, or merely an effective president,” says Bruce Josten, head of government affairs at the US Chamber of Commerce, which has spent tens of millions of dollars opposing healthcare. “My advice would be that he pick up the phone and ask for Bill Clinton’s advice on how to recover from a situation like this.”

Nor can Mr Obama rely on unity within his own party, which has been in disarray, if not panic, since Tuesday. For example, Mr Obama’s more populist tack on Wall Street re-regulation failed to attract endorsement from Chris Dodd, chairman of the Senate banking committee, even though he was present when Mr Obama made the announcement.

Others, such as Tim Johnson, Democratic senator for South Dakota and a senior member of the banking committee, were already opposed to elements of Mr Obama’s regulatory proposals including the plan to establish a consumer financial protection agency.

Worse, most people do not think Mr Obama can even command unity within his own administration on the Wall Street proposals amid growing speculation about whether Tim Geithner, the Treasury secretary, can survive in his job. Mr Geithner was conspicuously sidelined during Thursday’s announcement by the presence of Paul Volcker, the former Federal Reserve chairman, who lent his name to the push to rein in Wall Street banks.

The speculation about Mr Geithner is only likely to grow. “The Obama proposals were clearly politically motivated and came from the White House not the Treasury,” says a Democratic adviser to the administration, who withheld his name.

Finally, there is increasingly open Democratic disaffection about the way Mr Obama is managing relations with Capitol Hill. Many believe that Rahm Emanuel, Mr Obama’s aggressive chief of staff, served Mr Obama badly by persuading the president that his election was a transformational moment in US politics that gave him the opportunity to push through long-cherished Democratic goals, such as healthcare reform.

In fact, exit polls from Mr Obama’s election showed that almost two-thirds of the voters cited the economy as their chief concern, with fewer than one in 10 mentioning healthcare. Mr Emanuel is also perceived to have mishandled the day-to-day logistics of getting healthcare through Congress.

By leaving the scripting of the details of the healthcare bill to Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill, the White House openly courted the risk of chaos. Tellingly, in his victory speech in Boston on Tuesday, Scott Brown, the new Republican senator, cited voter disdain for the sight of lots of “old men” on Capitol Hill bickering over healthcare reform at a time when their priority was jobs.

“I haven’t seen Rahm Emanuel except on television,” Jim Pascrell, a Democratic lawmaker from New Jersey, told Politico, the news website, on Friday. “We used to see him a lot; Id like him to come out from behind his desk and meet with the common folk.”

In short, Mr Obama’s nightmare January could easily slip into a nightmare February. “Unless and until the president changes the way his White House, works, things are going to continue to go badly for him,” says the head of a Democratic think-tank. “Heads still have to roll.”

(Source: The Financial Times http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/821dce96-0786-11df-915f-00144feabdc0.html)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45732

January 23, 2010

Feds: Female Suicide Bombers On Way To US

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 11:51 pm

Feds: Female Suicide Bombers On Way To US

American law enforcement officials have been told to be on the lookout for female suicide bombers who may attempt to enter the United States, law enforcement authorities tell ABC News.

One official said at least two of them are believed to be connected to al Qaeda in Yemen, and may have a non-Arab appearance and be traveling on Western passports.

The threat was described as “current” but not imminent, said the official.

“They have trained women,” said former White House counterterrorism official Richard Clarke, an ABC News consultant.

Separately, Britain raised its terrorism threat level to “severe,” its second-highest level, days before London hosts major international meetings on how to deal with militancy in Afghanistan and Yemen. Britain’s threat level had been labeled “severe” for several years before being lowered last summer to “substantial.”

American officials say a U.S. air strike on X-Mas Eve against suspected al Qaeda training camps is believed to have killed many, but not all, of a group of suicide bombers being trained in Yemen.

The man accused of attempting to explode a bomb on Northwest flight 253, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, told FBI agents there were a number of other people who trained with him in Yemen.

“There are others who are still out there who have been trained and who are clean skins — that means people who we do not have a record of, people who may not look like al Qaeda terrorists, who may not be Arabs, and may not be men,” said Clarke.

The alert comes during a week in which American law enforcement officials described an “unusually high” number of people on the no-fly list attempting to board flights to or in the United States.

Read more at ABC News

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45726

VIDEO IDF Rescues Person 10 Days After Quake

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 11:42 pm

VIDEO IDF Rescues Person 10 Days After Quake

[VIDEO LINK BELOW] After nearly 10 days, an Israeli Search and Rescue team saved a 22-year-old Haitian man from the ruins of a three-story building, near the presidential residence in the southern side of the city. The man was transferred to the IDF field hospital in stable condition and is currently receiving further medical care.

A search conducted by Population Management officers from the Home Front Command, headed by Lt. Col. Rami Peletz, were directed to the location of the trapped man by local residents.

“American and French doctors were unable to rescue the trapped man and called upon the Israeli delegation’s search and rescue teams who rescued the man within half an hour, from a tunnel, 2.5-3-meters long and were able to release him whole and healthy,” said Maj. Zohar Moshe, a member of the rescue team.

As of Motzei Shabbos (EST), a total of 827 patients were treated by the IDF Field Hospital,251 surgeries performed, and 14 babies delivered.

YWN VIDEO LINK: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/video_viewer.php?clip=K3KNZZf8wXQ&player=y

(Dov Gordon – YWN)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45723

Survivor Rescued From Rubble 11 Days After Quake

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 11:25 pm

Survivor Rescued From Rubble 11 Days After Quake

Just hours afterthe government announced that it has ended the search-and-rescue phase of its response to the massive earthquake in Haiti, French rescue workers pulled a 24-year-old man alive from the rubble of a hotel in Haiti on Saturday, 11 days after the earthquake devastated much of the country.

Wismond Jean-Pierre, who had no visible injuries but was severely dehydrated, was immediately loaded into an ambulance and taken to a hospital for treatment.

One member of the French team called the three-hour effort “a miracle” as he was briefly overcome with emotion. Other members of the team — assisted by American and Greek workers — were seen weeping with joy after the rescue.

The man’s brothers said they reported hearing tapping from within the ruins of the Hotel Napoli Inn for several days but struggled to get authorities to the scene. A Greek journalist said he alerted Greek rescue workers after hearing the tapping for himself.

A French rescuer said the man was found in a pocket in the rubble and was able to move all of his extremities.

The rescuer said the man did not say much when he was pulled out but did indicate that there were three or four people around him when the building collapsed. The rescuer said the man had not heard any sounds around him for a couple of days, but workers were going into the rubble with radar equipment to check for any other survivors.

Earlier Saturday, the government announced that it has ended the search-and-rescue phase of its response to the disaster and that more than 111,000 people had died in the quake and its aftermath.

The government’s figure, released by the United Nations late Friday, is the first precise death toll for the magnitude-7.0 quake that struck January 12. It said 111,481 people were confirmed dead.

It is the worst death toll from an earthquake since the 2004 Asian tsunami and the second-highest death toll from an earthquake in more than three decades, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

About 609,000 people have also been left homeless in and around the capital of Port-au-Prince, the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said.

Before the search-and-rescue effort ended Friday afternoon, the U.N. office said said, rescuers had managed to pull 132 people alive from the rubble.

That number did not include two rescues Friday. An Israeli team pulled a 22-year-old man alive from the ruins of a three-story building, and doctors in Port-au-Prince were treating a 69-year-old woman they said was rescued Friday morning.

(Source: CNN)

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=45719

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