European Jewish Congress
Israeli Press Review of 21.04.2016
Israeli Press Review
Israeli Press Review of 21.04.2016

Major Headlines
  • Hamas claims responsibility for Jerusalem bus bombing

The Gaza-based Islamist movement Hamas has claimed credit for Monday's bus bombing in Jerusalem, the group said on Wednesday.

Hamas released a statement announcing the death of the Bethlehem native who is suspected of detonating the explosive on the bus in the south of the capital, the Jerusalem Post reports.

The Islamist group said that Abdel Hamid Abu Srour, 19, a resident of the Aida refugee camp near Bethlehem, was one of its members. His father was arrested by the IDF on Wednesday.

Despite numerous reports circulating that Abu Srour was the terrorist responsible for the attack, the Shin Bet and Police have not confirmed those rumours amid a strict gag order as of this writing.

Police continue to investigate who is responsible for the blast that wounded 20 other men, women and children.

Click here to read the full article in Jerusalem Post


  • Israel-Arab MK compares Israel to Nazi Germany

MK Haneen Zoabi (Joint Arab List) has turned down an invitation to participate in a Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony, citing her inability to speak out against what she called the “frightening similarity” between Nazi Germany’s behaviour and Israel’s policies in the occupied territories, or about Israel’s “cynical exploitation” of the Holocaust, Ha’aretz reports.

The ceremony at Kibbutz Yad Mordechai is the first Holocaust Remembrance Day event to which Zoabi has ever been invited in her capacity as a Knesset member.

Zoabi said she respects the memory of those killed in the Holocaust, but objects to the way Israel teaches the Holocaust to future generations.

“How can you teach the lessons of the Holocaust when you don’t discern the frightening similarity between what is happening today all around us and what happened in Germany in the 1930s?” she wrote to the organisers.

“The Holocaust obligates us not to be silent when racist laws are legislated, not to be silent when natives are exiled, not to be silent when their land and property is stolen, not to be silent when entire neighbourhoods and entire families are bombed and wiped off the face of the earth, and not to be silent when political activists are put in administrative detention. It obligates us to raise a loud outcry. But from the Jewish side of our reality, all that is heard is a weak voice, along with the silenced Palestinian voice.”

Zoabi also charged that the Holocaust is taught in Israel “in a selective and even manipulative fashion. You shouldn’t teach the lessons of the Holocaust to increase motivation to defend yourself by humiliating and oppressing the other; you shouldn’t teach the lessons of the Holocaust by adopting a policy of closure, exploitation, theft and murder. This would be cynical exploitation – selective, misleading and, in the end, antagonistic to the meaning of the Holocaust.”

Click here to read the full article in Haaretz


  • Israel puts billions into multi-layer Gaza tunnel barrier

Israel’s defence establishment is expected to finish installing a state of the art counter-tunnel barrier along the Israel-Gaza Strip border within two years, Israel Hayom reports.

The project, dubbed "Hourglass," is estimated at billions of shekels, and according to one defence official, its development enjoys unlimited funds.

The barrier's blueprints are the product of cross-platform development involving top Military Intelligence, Engineering Corps, and Shin Bet security agency officers, civilian engineering and infrastructure contractors, and tunnel construction experts.

The project's premise follows a pessimistic security scenario, suggesting the recently discovered terror tunnel under the Gaza border was just one in an extensive grid of underground passageways.

The planned barrier has been described as "multi-tiered" defenses, which strive to meet a wide variety of threats above and underground. It incorporates innovative measures, including sensor technology to detect underground excavation, and unique engineering technology. The barrier will also feature a state-of-the-art fence, complete with sensors, observation balloons, see-shoot systems, and intelligence gathering measures, as well as an underground wall.

Click here to read the full article in Israel Hayom


  • Netanyahu threatens to fire Bennett

An unprecedented confrontation broke out in a cabinet meeting on Wednesday morning between Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and the chairman of Bayit Yehudi, Education Minister Naftali Bennett.

The minister became angry at the fact that IDF soldiers entering Area A in the West Bank, the area under the full control of the Palestinian Authority, was not on the meeting's agenda. He asked Netanyahu for clarification on this, and he claimed that it had been agreed that the item would be discussed in the cabinet meeting.

According to sources present at the event, the prime minister chided Bennett, "You don't set anything here," at the peak of their disagreement. Netanyahu then allegedly threatened to fire Bennett.

On Sunday, the prime minister had promised Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, Bennett and the military secretary that the meeting would include a discussion of the A Area subject. "Keep your promises," Bennett yelled at Netanyahu, who retorted, "You aren't running things here."

In response to reports of the confrontation, Bennett's office stated, "We will not address the details of closed security debates. Cabinet leaks are a serious issue that endanger national security. I expect the prime minister to handle this."

The Prime Minister's Office replied, "We do not address cabinet discussions.

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot

Thursday, April 21, 2016
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