An Israeli police officer has died from his injuries sustained in the terror attack on a Jerusalem synagogue Tuesday that also led to the deaths of three rabbis with dual American-Israeli citizenship, and one with British citizenship. Terrorist group Hamas has claimed that the attack was revenge for the killing of a Palestinian bus driver on Sunday night. An autopsy report reveals, however, that the bus driver committed suicide.
Hamas, which was engaged in a war with Israel over the summer that led to the deaths of over 2,100 people, mostly Palestinians, said that it blamed Jewish settlers for the killing of 32-year-old bus driver Yussuf al-Ramuni.
"The attack in Jerusalem is a reaction to the crime and execution of the martyr al-Ramouni and a reaction to the crimes of the occupation, the Hamas movement is calling for more revenge attacks," Hamas said on its official Al-Aksa TV. more >>
Three Americans are among four people killed during an attack Tuesday at a Jerusalem synagogue carried out by two Palestinians armed with a meat cleaver and gun. The Israeli police, who shot down the attackers, said they view the incident as a terror attack.
"We are viewing this as a terrorist attack," said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld, who confirmed the four dead and that the two assailants were killed by police.
Fox News identified the slain Americans as Aryeh Kupinsky, Kalmen Levin and Moshe Twersky. Another eight people were injured in the attack on the Kehillat Bnei Torah synagogue in the ultra-Orthodox Har Nof neighborhood in the western part of Jerusalem. more >>
Sweden is arguably the most "European" of European countries by virtue of its historically cohesive nationhood ("one big family"), militaristic and socialist legacies, untrammeled immigration, unmatched political correctness, and its supercilious claim to the status of a "moral superpower." These features also make it perhaps the most alien of European countries to an American conservative.
In this context, I offer a summary and paraphrase of my discussion held with two senior members of the permanent bureaucracy in the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) during a recent visit to Stockholm. Our affable but pointed discussion focused on the Middle East, on which we agreed on almost nothing; I might as well have been in Sudan or Syria's MFA.
The following contains the seemingly sober officials' more colorful statements, then my responses. First, we discussed the Iranian nuclear program: more >>
Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat might have converted to Christianity before his death in 2004, suggested Christian writer and speaker RT Kendall, a close friend of his. Kendall revealed that Arafat wept while watching Mel Gibson's epic "The Passion of the Christ" a decade ago, and said that he would not be surprised to see his friend in heaven.
"It wouldn't surprise me to see him in heaven,' Kendall said in an interview with Premier. Christianity magazine. 'I'll tell you why. I prayed with him five times, anointed him with oil, I gave him a [salvation] prayer … I'm not saying I know that he's saved; I'm saying I wouldn't be surprised."
Kendall talked about how he initially met Arafat in 2002 during a visit to Israel and Palestinian territories. During the meeting, which went on for longer than planned, the two discussed the nature of Jesus — whether He died, was resurrected and ascended to heaven, as Christianity teaches, or whether He did not die, as the Quran suggests. more >>
The Israeli cabinet approved a new bill on Sunday aimed at easing the process of converting to Judaism, which advocates say could encourage hundreds of thousands of Israelis to join the religion.
"It is a very good day for Israel," Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, chair of the Jewish Home party, told The Times of Israel on Sunday. "It will solve many problems for thousands of Israelis."
Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, added: "This is a day of good news: After struggles and obstacles, the reform in conversion passed in the government today with a large majority. more >>
Sweden has become the first major European Union member to officially recognize the state of Palestine. The controversial move has been strongly criticized by Israel, which recalled its ambassador in protest.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas "is looking for a way not to return to the negotiating table, and Sweden just gave him a perfect excuse," an Israeli Foreign Ministry source told The Times of Israel.
The source added that Sweden's recognition of Palestine could destabilize fragile relations in the Middle East, where a long term ceasefire between Israel and militant group Hamas from earlier this year is still holding. more >>