Newsletter : 6fax0309.txt
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Israel Vows to Act Against Iran
By VOA News, IsraelNationalNews.com & YnetNews.com
Israel said Wednesday that it would be forced to defend itself against Iran, if the
United Nations Security Council failed to take action to stop Tehran from acquiring
In an interview with Reuters, Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz was asked whether
Israel is ready to use military force, if the Security Council does not stop what Israel
believes is a covert Iranian weapons program. Mofaz replied, "We have to defend
He said during a visit to Germany that "the State of Israel has many drawers,
containing all it needs in order to defend our citizens," and that any military action
would be based on Israel's right to provide security to its people. In 1981, Israel bombed
a nuclear reactor in Iraq to prevent Saddam Hussein from developing nuclear weapons.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for the destruction of Israel since
taking office last year. He also has rejected the vast body of historical documentation
of the Holocaust as myth.
Mofaz, who met with German officials, including the defense and foreign ministers,
added that "the State of Israel and the Jewish people will never again face a situation in
which our existence is being threatened. We do not intend on turning a blind eye to any
threat that we may face, and we will do everything so that the threat is not
German Defense Minister Franz Josef Jung said after his meeting with Mofaz in Berlin
that Germany explicitly supports Israel. "I too see the danger in an Iranian nuclear bomb.
We are allies on this issue. I never imagined that a state leader would stand up and deny
the Holocaust or declare once and again that the State of Israel must be destroyed and has
no right to exist," the German minister added.
In a related story, the Jewish fringe organization Neturei Karta has sent several
representatives to Iran this week, in order to show the group's support for Iranian leader
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in his recent calls to "wipe Israel off the map".
In a statement to Iran's state-run radio, the delegates of the several-hundred-strong
organization called for "the disintegration of the Zionist regime." One of the British
Neturei Karta leaders was reported on Iranian television to have said that "Zionists are
involved in almost every major crime worldwide."
In another recent action in support of anti-Semitic leaders, Neturei Karta issued a
congratulatory open letter to Ismail Haniyeh, appointed as Hamas leader of the Palestinian
Authority last month. As reported by IsraelNationalNews.com, Neturei Karta's leader
received "unofficial" payments from the PA, personally authorized by the late PLO leader
Leaders of all strictly Orthodox Jewish religious groups in - including those who in
principle reject a secular State of Israel - have excommunicated members of Neturei
Abbas Hoping For an Olmert Victory
By IsraelNationalNews.com & Israel Faxx News Services
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas told an Italian newspaper that he is
rooting for Ehud Olmert and his Kadima party to win in the coming Israeli elections.
Abbas, the head of Yasir Arafat's Fatah terrorist group, remains the president of Gaza and
several enclaves within Judea and Samaria handed over by Israel to PA control.
The Italian newspaper Carriera Della Sera printed the interview with the PA leader, who
said that he hopes that Olmert will form the next coalition government in Israel's
Abbas said his preference for Olmert stemmed from their personal acquaintance, which
makes him comfortable to work with Olmert through further political steps. Abbas added,
though, that he would "honor every decision made by the Israeli public" pertaining to the
Recent reports have alleged that the U.S. demanded of Abbas to delay the formation of a
Hamas-led PA government so as not to negatively impact the electoral support of Ariel
Sharon's Kadima party, led by Olmert since Sharon's massive stroke.
The Likud party issued a statement in response to the report. "Abu Mazen (Abbas)
understands that with Olmert he will receive radical withdrawals without anything in
return and with no Palestinian commitments
Even Abu Mazen understands that Kadima is
left of Labor."
"Abu Mazen's declaration is a Certificate of Inadequacy for Kadima and Olmert," said
Likud faction head Gideon Sa'ar. "Abu Mazen is concerned with Palestinian interests, which
desire the rise of the left, led by Olmert, who plan gratuitous withdrawals from Judea and
However, the Associated Press reported that Abbas has disavowed that Italian a
newspaper report. An Abbas senior aide said the newspaper misquoted Abbas when it had him
saying in an interview: "I hope that Olmert wins ... I know him well, and I believe that I
could work with him in a productive way."
"He (Abbas) said he doesn't interfere in Israeli elections," the Abbas aide told
Reuters about the Carriera interview. "As polls suggest Kadima would win, he would deal
with him (Olmert) as he knows him well," the aide said on condition of anonymity.
Responding to Abbas' alleged remarks, the Likud said earlier Wednesday, "Even Abu
Mazen, who called on Hamas to form the next Palestinian government, understands that
Olmert will make more concessions without any Palestinian commitments. Even Abu Mazen
understands that Kadima is further left than Labor."
Conservative Movement Postpones Decision on Same-Sex Marriages
The Conservative movement decided Wednesday to postpone until next December making a
final decision on recognizing gay marriage and allowing homosexuals to be ordained as
rabbis, a move that is threatening to split the movement.
The movement's Halachic (Jewish law) committee discussed the initiative Wednesday but
it was decided to delay making a final decision. One of the Conservative movement's
leading rabbis in New York, who requested to remain anonymous, told Ha'aretz on Monday
that the initiative's approval would cause broad resistance among the movement's rabbis
and congregation members, and that many would leave the movement.
Rabbi Joel Myers, chairman of the movement's "Rabbinical Parliament" told Ha'aretz that
reports of a possible split were exaggerated. "Recognition of gay marriages and of
homosexual rabbis creates tensions due to the conflict between the principles of Jewish
law and the values of our time. However, this issue is not central or critical to our
The movement's Halachic committee is also expected to overturn the decision made by the
same committee in 1992, which banned gay marriage and prevented homosexuals from entering
the movement's rabbinate.
Allowing for gay marriage and for homosexual rabbis represents far-reaching changes in
the movement's principles. The initiative's approval would bring the Conservative movement
ideologically closer to the Reform movement and would likely cause a rupture between the
Conservative and Orthodox movements.
The Conservative movement is the only movement among the four Jewish movements active
in the United States that has lost a significant amount of members in the last number of
years. Over the last decade, the percentage of Jews who identify with the Conservative
movement has dropped from 43 percent to 33 percent, while the Reform movement has grown
from 35 percent to 39 percent and the Orthodox movement has grown from 16 percent to 21
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