Newsletter : 5fax1104.txt
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IDF on High Alert on Lebanon Border
IDF officers, fearing Hizbullah terrorists will try to kidnap army soldiers, placed
troops in high alert Thursday night. Israel Army Radio quoted IDF officers that Hizbullah
wants to stage a major terror attack along the border between Lebanon and Israel. The army
called on area farmers to take special caution and not to work in fields adjacent to the
security fence on the border. Earlier Thursday, the IDF fired warning shots from Har Dov
to deter terrorists from actions against Israel.
Israeli Defense Chief Vows Non-Interference in Palestinian Elections
By David Gollust (VOA-Washington)
Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz said Thursday that Israel would not interfere with
Palestinian parliamentary elections in January, but also does not want to see radical
factions like Hamas in a new parliament. He spoke after Washington talks with Secretary of
State Condoleezza Rice.
Israel has mounted a military offensive including a resumption of targeted killings of
Palestinian terrorists after a suicide bomber killed several Israelis October 26.
But in a talk with reporters after a more than hour-long meeting with Rice, Mofaz
struck a conciliatory tone. He said his government wants to work with Palestinian
Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas or Abu Mazen, and will not impede the January 25 election,
though it also wants Abbas to live up to summit pledges earlier this year to consolidate
power at the expense of the militants.
"We will not interfere in the Palestinian election but we don't believe that Hamas
should be part of the Palestinian parliament. It is a Palestinian issue. But Abu Mazen
said in the Sharm el-Sheikh summit that he would lead the Palestinian Authority to be a
one-authority, one-rule and one-gun. And we want that he will achieve these goals, and we
will do our best to ease the lives of the Palestinians."
Mofaz said that the Palestinian Authority chief should move to dismantle armed factions
before the election, and that Israel would not have any dealings with members of terrorist
groups who might be elected to the parliament and become part of a Palestinian
Mount Zion Handover: President Denies, Reports Persist
President Katzav's office categorically denies any intention to sign an agreement to
give over parts of Mt. Zion to the Catholic Church. Arutz-7 has received a copy of the
alleged agreement to do so.
The proposed contract reads: "The State of Israel hands over to the Holy See the use of
the Cenacle [the room of the event known as the Last Supper, above King David's tomb -
ed.], of the access path to it, and of the spaces adjacent to it... It is the Holy See's
intention to inform the Bishops - and through them the world's priests - that the Catholic
Church has been given the use of the Cenacle, inviting them to visit the Holy Place
together with their faithful"
A Foreign Ministry official said, "Israel is not prepared to relinquish its
jurisdiction over this area" - but he admitted that a blueprint of a possible agreement
with the Vatican has been received.
At present, since shortly after the Six-Day War in 1967, the Diaspora Yeshiva is
located on Mt. Zion, and warns of the catastrophic implications for Israel if the deal
goes through. "This is an enormous issue that is being pushed through without any public
debate whatsoever," Yeshiva Director Rabbi Shabtai Herman told Tovia Singer on
Rabbi Mordechai Goldstein, who founded the Diaspora Yeshiva, officially known as
Yeshiva Toras Yisrael elaborated: "According to their Bible, the land is to return to the
Christians, and 144,000 Jews are to return to Mt. Zion. So their plan is for them to take
control of the site, and then to announce that they are holding a mass reenactment of the
Last Supper, with [all types of religious rituals], and to invite millions of Christians
to come to Jerusalem and celebrate." He said that this means much tourism money for
Israel, and that someone in the Israeli government is apparently very interested in making
President Katzav's office categorically denies any knowledge of plans to sign away the
King David's complex, or intention to do so during his trip to the Vatican later this
month. Despite this, Christian newspapers in Italy and around the world are replete with
reports that such a deal is in the works. According to the reports, Israel will receive
control of an 800-year-old synagogue in Toledo, Spain, known now as Santa Maria, in
exchange for David's Tomb.
Katsav: No Pardon for Rabin's Assassin
President Moshe Katsav vowed Thursday that he would never grant a pardon to Yigal Amir
- the extreme right wing activist who assassinated former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin at
a peace rally in Tel Aviv in November 1995.
Katsav was speaking as events marking the 10th anniversary of Rabin's assassination got
underway Thursday morning with the lighting of the "Yitzhak Candle" at the president's
residence in Jerusalem. "I will not trim [Amir's] punishment and I will recommend that
those who succeed me [as president] also deny him pardon."
Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Thursday at a separate memorial for Rabin that
"From the distance of time and perspective, Yitzhak Rabin's Oslo Agreement brought on a
process of disillusionment by the Israel public and the formation of a more realistic,
sober and balanced perception of the moves Israel has to make."
He added that Rabin took action so that Jerusalem and the Temple Mount would remain in
Israeli hands under any diplomatic circumstance, and would have continued to do so had he
been alive today. "That is part of the political testimony Rabin left us."
Dalia Rabin, the late prime minister's daughter and chair of the Rabin Center, said:
"Lighting the Yitzhak Candle takes us back to the days of 'the candle kids,' who stood in
the square in shock and sought answers; the answers must be provided by Israeli society to
the future generations, and that is what the Rabin Center's activity is about."
Family members alone will assemble Friday at Rabin's grave on Mount Herzl. The state
memorial service will take place on Monday. The high point will be a commemorative
assembly next Saturday at Rabin Square, at which former President Bill Clinton will speak.
Other definite speakers include Shimon Peres and Rabin's grandson, Yonatan Ben-Artzi.
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon will not attend the assembly, reportedly because of the
security measure his presence would require. Another key event will be the dedication of
the new Rabin Center, attended by Bill and Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice, Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak's adviser Osama El-Baz, and other world
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