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>Israel Faxx
>JN July 7. 1997, Vol. 5, No. 121

Can Pollard Serve His Sentence in Israel?

Minister of Justice Tzachi Hanegbi will confer with convicted spy Jonathan Pollard's lawyers to ascertain if a petition will be filed with US officials on his behalf. Following the implementation of a new law, permitting Israelis to complete serving jail sentences in Israel instead of abroad, it is now being investigated if such an arrangement can be made for Pollard, an Israeli citizen.

Hizbullah Terrorists Attacked in Lebanon

By Patricia Golan (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israeli warplanes have attacked suspected terrorist hideouts in southern Lebanon. The attacks came after an Israeli soldier was killed and three Lebanese villagers wounded in fighting with Hizbullah forces.

Israeli planes launched three separate raids on positions belonging to the Iranian-backed Hizbullah. There were also artillery duels between Israeli troops and the terrorists.

According to an Israeli army spokesman, the fighting was sparked by the death of an Israeli soldier during a firefight early Sunday with gunmen near the village of Sojod -- in the eastern sector of Israel's self-proclaimed security zone.

Shortly after the clash, Israeli warplanes fired rockets at suspected Hizbullah hideouts, the Israeli army spokesman said were used as firing positions.

Israel established the buffer zone -- which stretches along the Israeli-Lebanese border -- in 1985 to prevent cross-border terrorist attacks. The Shiite Muslim Hizbullah -- or Party of God -- has led the fight to drive Israeli troops out of Lebanon.

In a recent visit to France, Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai raised the idea of improving the security situation in south Lebanon by involving the French army. His proposal calls for the French to strengthen the Lebanese government army so Lebanese troops could be deployed in the south, allowing an Israeli army withdrawal.

While the French are said to be considering Mordechai's idea, other government officials and members of the opposition say the plan has little chance of implementation, without an agreement with Syria. Israeli-Syrian negotiations have been stalemated for the past year-and-one-half.

The Old Testament According to Arafat

According to a television show aired on Palestinian Authority TV, the stories of the Bible took place in Yemen, and not in Israel. This, the producers say, dissolves any Jewish connection to the Land of Israel.

The official station aired a show which claimed that there is no connection between the Jews of today and those of the Bible. A geographer and a historian participated in the broadcast, and said that the true descendants of the biblical children of Israel are the Palestinians of today.

One of the participants, Jarid Elkadaweh, said, "God is my witness that in my blood there is more of the children of Israel than in that of Ariel Sharon and Binyamin Netanyahu." On the official Palestinian Ministry of Information Web site, the PA states that the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest existing site, is not Jewish at all but part of a 'conspiracy' to undermine the foundations of the Al Aqsa mosque on Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

It states, "the Al-Boraq part of the exterior facade of the western wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque...Some Orthodox religious Jews consider it as a holy place for them, and claim that the wall is part of their temple which all historic studies and archeological excavations have failed to find any proof for such a claim."

No Direct Early Warning for Israel in Case of Missile Attack

By SNS News Service

Contrary to previous reports, Israel will not receive direct broadcasts from an American satellite in the event of a missile attack. Despite the indirect method by which Israel will receive notification, a missile fired from a distance of 300 kilometers (180 miles) from a location in Iraq would provide Israel with about three minutes advance notice prior to striking its target.

The point of the new arrangement is that Israeli officials will be reliant on American goodwill to provide the information of an impending attack.

Herodian Entrance to Palace Discovered at Masada

In the course of preservation work at the site at Masada, by the Dead Sea, workers opened a passage built in the time of King Herod, which was apparently shut after his rule, in 37 BCE.

It offered an alternative entrance to the northern palace at the mountain fortress. The National Parks Authority is carrying out the preservation work together with archaeologists from the Hebrew University. Another passage was also discovered, linking the storehouses and leading in the direction of the baths and the palace. The site is expected to draw 1,250,000 visitors annually by 2010.

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