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Yigal Amir´s Brother Says Army Rejecting Him


Sagiv Amir, brother of Yigal Amir who assassinated Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin in 1995, said the army has refused to assign him to reserve duty. Amir completed his regular army duty two weeks ago and was prepared for reserve duty assignment. He said he reported to the Home Front Command, where he was told he would serve as a reservist. Officers told him they didn't want "to get into difficulty" and refused to process him. Amir served in a Nahal Haredi unit and said all his friends were given assignments in the Home Front Command. He told officers either to process him or release him from service. After five hours, Amir returned home without an answer.

Ten Arab States May Open Embassies in Israel After Pullout

By Ha'aretz

A Foreign Ministry report revealed that in the period immediately following Israel's disengagement from the Gaza Strip and the northern West Bank, 10 Arab countries would open embassies in Israel and establish full relations. Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom made remarks in a similar vein.

The ministry also believes, however, that relations between Israel and the Palestinians are liable to "explode" following disengagement when the Palestinian Authority demands immediate final status talks, Army Radio reported on Tuesday morning. The report, prepared by the Foreign Ministry's policy research division, indicated the Palestinians would likely demand immediate negotiations over a final-status deal. Israel prefers first holding talks on an intermediate agreement. The ministry believes that the United States and Europe are likely to support the Palestinian demand for final status talks. The radio reported there are now attempts to open secret channels between Israel and the PA in order to reach a final status deal.

Shalom believes that at least 10 additional Arab states will strengthen ties with Jerusalem in the wake of the decision by Jordan and Egypt to return their ambassadors to Israel. Shalom met Monday with the new Jordanian ambassador, Marouf al-Bakhit. Appearing before the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, the foreign minister told lawmakers that the international arena was pleased with the election of Mahmoud Abbas as Palestinian Authority chairman, noting that 22 foreign ministers had visited Israel since that election. He said Abbas' election had also led to a change in Europe's attitude toward Israel.

Shalom stressed that Abbas had yet to make a strategic decision to dismantle the terror infrastructures, and that until such a decision is made, "we will be in a pre-road map" state. He also said that Israel was making efforts via other countries to press Syria to withdraw its forces from Lebanon. Commenting on Hizbullah, the foreign minister said that the organization had invested $9 million in support for terror cells and terror activities.

Elderly Holocaust Survivor Behind Threatening Letters


Israel Police have revealed that nearly all of the much-publicized threatening letters received recently by public figured were written by one elderly woman from the town of Bat Yam. Tel Aviv fraud investigators began looking into the sources of the letters last month after Police Commissioner Moshe Karadi and Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz each received strongly worded letters threatening them with death "at the hands of heaven."

In many of her letters the woman spoke about the small town in Poland where she was born. This led police investigators to solicit help from the Yad VaShem Holocaust museum in locating the woman. When the police asked her if she was behind them she readily admitted that she spends 12 to 16 hours a day writing the letters - which she says are therapeutic for her. The woman has been writing such letters to public figures for the past 14 years, but her threats had been dismissed until the recent media interest against government ministers.

Actual concrete threats against members of the government have been dismissed by the GSS, the security body enlisted with protecting government officials and evaluating threats against them. Several of the "attacks" reported in recent weeks have consisted of merely raised voices and insults.

Man Thrown Out for Wearing a Star


Avraham Bilgrei of Gush Etzion was asked to leave a Jerusalem mall this past weekend when he was "caught" wearing a yellow "Jude" star. Bilgrei was visiting the Israel Kanyon (Mall) in the Talpiot neighborhood of Jerusalem with the star on his chest. Gush Katif residents and supporters were at the center of a controversy two months ago when they began wearing orange stars to protest their impending expulsion. Many critics were aghast at the comparison of the impending expulsion from Gush Katif and northern Shomron, to the Nazi transfer of Jews during the Holocaust period.

"I was in the stairwell on my way to my car," Avraham told Arutz-7, "when I encountered three youths. I saw that they were staring at the star I was wearing. I engaged them in conversation, and saw that they were very ignorant of Jewish history, near and past. Suddenly, a guard came by and asked me to leave. I was quite taken aback, and asked him who had sent him. He replied, 'the manager of the mall.' I asked for the manager's name and phone number, and he gave it to me. I left, and later I called the manager and asked him why he had me thrown out. He told me that he wouldn't tolerate any political statements in the mall. People see the star I'm wearing and think I am being provocative," Avraham said, "but they are just being reactive. They are not responding and not interested in responding. It is rather an emotional reaction."

Avraham emphasized that he was wearing not an orange star, but rather one with the original yellow color. "This is not an issue only for Gush Katif, but rather for all of Israel," he explained. Arutz-7 asked the manager of the mall, Alon Goldberg, "Would one be permitted to wear a Peace Now shirt in your mall?" Goldberg said, "A shirt of any political group is legitimate, unless it's an illegal group. But an item such as a yellow star with the word Jude is a provocation, and it causes a stir, to the extent that I thought he should be distanced. It's a purely business decision; I don't want any political activity in the mall."

Dates of Biblical Edom Reassessed in Archeological Research Results Israel News Faxx Staff Report

New archeological research from modern-day Jordan indicates the existence of the biblical nation of Edom at least as early as the 10th century BCE, the era of Kings David and Solomon, and adds to the controversy over the historical accuracy of the Old Testament. The full results of the 2002 excavation, by a team of international scholars, at the site of Khirat en-Nahas (or "ruins of copper," in Arabic), are reported in the current issue of the British journal Antiquity.

The new study, under the direction of University of California, San Diego, Professor of Archeology Thomas Levy, contradicts much contemporary scholarship, which had argued that, because there had been no physical evidence, no Edomite state had existed before the 8th century. Until the current discovery many scholars had said the Bible's numerous references to ancient Israel's interactions with Edom could not be valid.

The Edomite lowlands, home to a large copper ore zone, have been ignored by archaeologists because of the logistical difficulties of working in this hyper-arid region. But with an anthropological perspective, and using high precision radiocarbon dating, this new research demonstrates two major phases of copper production-during the 12th to 11th centuries BCE and the 10th to 9th centuries BCE. In this period evidence was found of construction of massive fortifications and industrial scale metal production activities, as well as over 100 building complexes.

New Kingdom (19th - 20th Dynasties) ca. 1295 -1069 BCE and Third Intermediate Period (21st - 22nd Dynasties) ca. 1069 - 715 BCE Egyptian scarabs of a walking sphinx and a hunting scene provide additional evidence of metal-working activities at the site in the period around 1200 to 900 BCE. These results push back the beginnings of Edom 300 years earlier than the current scholarly consensus and show the presence of complex societies, perhaps a kingdom, much earlier than previously assumed. Previous investigations in Edom had been carried out in the Jordanian highland zone and had put the rise of the Edomite kingdom during the 8th to 6th centuries BCE But the new work presents strong evidence for the involvement of Edom with neighboring ancient Israel as described in the Bible.

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