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Special Internet Network for Orthodox Community


The Orthodox Mishpacha weekly reports that a special filtered Internet system is being developed to allow members of the Orthodox community to use the Internet while completely blocking access to objectionable material.

The computer set-up and network will consist of a flat-screen, a keyboard, a USB port, but no CD drive. Users will be allowed to surf authorized sites approved by Orthodox rabbis. Currently, many Orthodox homes do not have an Internet connection due to decisions by Hareidi rabbis to limit Internet use to business or to steer clear altogether until objectionable content is blocked completely.

Israel Rejects Hamas Conditions for Long-term Truce

By Robert Berger (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israel has rejected the conditions of the Islamic terrorist group Hamas for a long-term cease-fire. A Hamas leader ruled out recognition of Israel or peace with the Jewish state.

Hamas Prime Minister-designate Ismail Haniyeh said the group would agree to a long-term cease-fire with Israel, if it withdraws from all territory captured during the Six Day War in 1967. That means the West Bank and Jerusalem's Old City, which is home to the Western Wall and Temple Mount, the holiest sites in Judaism.

Haniyeh backed away from an interview he gave to The Washington Post, which quoted him as saying that Hamas would recognize Israel, and make "peace in stages," if it gave the Palestinians a state and their rights. That would include the so-called "right of return" - allowing millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants to return to their former homes in Israel.

He said that "We do not want to throw the Israelis into the sea," adding Hamas does not seek war and does not plan to initiate bloodshed.

Israel says flooding the country with Palestinian refugees would destroy the Jewish character of the state and amount to national suicide, and it dismissed Haniyeh's offer outright.

Israeli analyst Dan Schueftan said "One has to be stupid to even seriously consider, if he is making a conciliatory statement. What he is saying is that, after Israel is destroyed, namely after the right of return is instituted, and so on, then he will consider to have a long-term truce with Israel. I mean it is a ridiculous statement."

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said the Hamas victory in parliamentary elections a month ago has made moderate Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas irrelevant. She said that Abbas, who is recognized by the international community because he supports the peace process, must not be what she called a fig leaf for a terrorist regime.

U.S. Plans to Indirectly Fund Hamas Authority


The United States has decided to continue aid to the Palestinian Authority, headed by the Hamas Islamic terrorist group, which enjoys ties with Iran and Al-Qaeda.

PA official Saeb Erekat announced Saturday that the State Department had promised him that America would not freeze aid to the Arabs of the PA-controlled areas, but would merely redirect it. Erekat made the announcement after meeting with State Department official David Welch.

"[The United States has] never transferred a single dollar to the Palestinian Authority directly. The money was being transferred via non-governmental organizations," said Erekat, adding that such an arrangement would continue regardless of Hamas' actions. Welch refused to speak with reporters.

Erekat's words contrast with those of President George W. Bush, who said Friday that Hamas would have to recognize Israel's right to exist, renounce terrorism and strive toward peace if it wished to receive U.S. aid.

Both the U.S. and European Union continue to list Hamas as a terrorist organization. Senior Hamas official Dr. Nizar Rian himself said at a Hamas rally in northern Gaza Friday, "The fact we engage in political negotiations does not imply we are not busy in preparations for the Palestinians' resistance against the crimes of the occupation…"

Russian Missile Cruiser on NATO Exercise, Docked at Syrian Port

By DEBKAfile

A task force led by the Moskva and the Azov landing ship became the first Russian naval force in a decade to call at a Syrian port. DEBKAfile's military sources reported.

The force sailed out of its home port of Sevastopol on the Black Sea, on Feb. 5, to join a NATO-led anti-terrorist operation in the Mediterranean for a combined three-month drill focusing on combating the smuggling of weapons of mass destruction, illegal weapons trade and migration.

The drill is named The Active Endeavors Operation. NATO leaders and U.S. army chiefs were keen enough on Russian participation for NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer to promise the gesture of the first visit by an alliance chief aboard the Moskva. However, neither he nor the Americans taking part in the exercise had any idea that the Russian naval force intended to break away from the exercise long enough to put in at a Syrian port – a call which Syrian president Bashar Assad took as a gesture of support from Moscow.

The visit underlined the Kremlin's plan to play a larger part in the military affairs of the Middle East, largely by making friendly overtures to America's adversaries.

The Moskva missile cruiser was built in 1982 to hunt down and destroy aircraft carriers. It underwent major repairs which were completed in 2000. It carries a 510-man crew and its main armament is the Bazalt cruise missile, which weighs six tons, has a speed of Mach 2.5 and range of 341 miles. The 186.5-meter vessel can carry either a nuclear warhead or a 1,100-pound conventional one. Its S300f anti-air-system stretches over the Moskva an aerial umbrella with a 46-mile radius.

Muslim Preacher on Temple Mount: Restore Worldwide Islamic Rule


Sheikh Ismail Nawahda, preaching to Muslim masses on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Friday, has brought it out into the open: the call to restore the Muslim Khalifate, or, "Genuine Islamic Rule."

A plan for the "Return of the Khalifate" was published secretly in 2002 by a group called "The Guiding Helper Foundation." The group explained that it wished to "give direction to the educated Muslim populace in its increasing interest in the establishment of Islam as a practical system of rule."

This past Friday, however, the plan went public. Nawahda called publicly for the renewal of the Islamic Khalifate, which would "unite all the Moslems in the world against the infidels."

The Khalifate system features a leader, known as a Khalif, who heads worldwide Islam. Assisted by a 10-man council, his decisions are totally binding on all Muslims.

According to the Foundation's vision of the Khalifate, significant punishment can only be meted out for 14 crimes, including "accusing a chaste person of fornication," "not performing the formal prayer," and "not fasting during Ramadan."

The Foundation recommends working to restore the Muslim dictatorship using a system of small groups around the world. The purpose is so that the "enemies of Islam" who "will definitely try to stop us" will have a "much harder task, if not impossible, if they are faced with a myriad of small groups of differing locations, ethnicities," etc. This method also "ensures that if one group... is found and cut off, other similar groups will remain undetected."

Sheikh Nawahda reminded his Temple Mount audience that the first step taken by Muhammed in stabilizing his rule was to form the nucleus of the first Islamic country in the city of Medina. Nawahda also said that the status of Muslims around the world has dropped drastically ever since the collapse of the last Khalifate in 1924, after Turkey became a democratic republic.

Nawahda called upon the Arabs of the Palestinian Authority to rise above their personal and party interests, and said that Muslims must return to Islam and join forces in the struggle against the West. He praised the worldwide protests against the anti-Muhammed cartoons, and encouraged the Muslim public to continue such activities. He implied that those who insulted Muhammed are liable for death. The Sheikh designated the Muslim masses as a strong point that can be utilized in the fight against the West.

Anti-Jewish Discrimination at Temple Mount


Discrimination against religious Jews who wish to visit the Temple Mount continues. A group was turned away Sunday, as non-Jews passed freely through.

A small group of Jewish tourists from Los Angeles attempted to ascend to Judaism's holiest site, after immersing in a mikvah and taking the other Halakhic precautions. They were stopped at the entrance, however, and told they could not enter because they did not have identification.

"The most frustrating part," said their tour guide, Yossi Maimon, "was that lots of other tourists, clearly not Jewish, were allowed up without even being checked." Maimon said he asked the local police commander about the discrimination against Jews, and was told that this is in fact the official policy.

Long-time Holy Temple activists Rabbi Yosef Elboim of Jerusalem and Yehuda Etzion of Ofrah said that this policy is a long-running one.

"Not only are there different rules for religious Jews and others," Rabbi Elboim told Arutz-7, "but the police treat the religious Jews with tremendous disrespect. "A sheikh can call for world-wide Muslim rule from the Temple Mount, but if a Jew whispers Yibaneh HaMikdash (a prayer that the Holy Temple should be rebuilt), they immediately take him away for questioning and restrict him from visiting the site again. Where are we living?"

At present, religious Jews are permitted to enter the Temple Mount, if they are approved, from 7:30 to 10 a.m. and for another hour beginning at 12:30.

Etzion said that a special booth has been set up at the Mugrahbim Gate entrance to the Temple Mount, adjacent to the prayer area of the Western Wall, for the purpose of checking religious Jews. "The way they check Jews, under their yarmulke and all over the body, for any type of prayer, is simply humiliating," he said.

Mofaz: PA Under Hamas Puts Iran Just Outside Tel Aviv


Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz told U.S. envoy David Welch on Sunday that the Hamas and its sponsor in Iran were attempting to create "an axis of evil, here," on Israel's doorstep.

Mofaz said, "The latest contacts between the Hamas and Iran, and Khaled Mash'aal's trip to Teheran to obtain Iranian support and to create an alliance, brings the axis of evil of Iran, Syria, Hizbullah and Hamas, right here."

Mofaz told Welch that the Hamas had specific plans to intensify its relationship with Iran and Hizbullah. "We know about their intentions and Israel cannot agree to that."

Despite veiled hints that Hamas might accept Israel de facto within its pre-1967 borders, Mofaz said Israel would not be amenable to any negotiations with the terror group which won a landslide victory against the Fatah in Palestinian Authority elections last month. He called the Hamas approach, "sweet talk."

"We saw this in interviews in the American press over the weekend, but the facts are simple. That the Hamas has not accepted any conditions, exposes their true intentions. The Hamas plan is to take control of the PA in stages, setting up the government, taking control of the security forces, and following that, control of the entire PA, an act that will turn the PA into Hamastan," the Defense Minister explained.

Under the Oslo accords, the PA controls territories in Judea, Samaria and Gaza. Some of those territories are located only a few miles from the heavily populated Tel Aviv area, Israel's commercial and industrial center.

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