ISRAEL’S MEASLES EPIDEMIC

For the past nine months, Israel has been following in the footsteps of Europe and the United States with a severe measles epidemic. Thus far, two thousand forty cases have been reported, with the most in Jerusalem, Beit Shemesh, and Safed. The overall rate of vaccination in Israel is at 97 percent, but in cities with larger ultra-orthodox communities, the possibility to contract the highly-contagious disease is higher. Although ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities are known to not vaccinate, local rabbis have issued Biblical rulings in favor of being immunized.

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Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman (Photo: Effi Sharir)

Please pray for the health and safety of all those who are susceptible to contracting the measles.


ISRAEL’S ‘MERKAVA’ TANK TAKES FOURTH PLACE IN THE WORLD

The United States magazine, “National Interest”, which has interest in defense and foreign relations, has crowned Israel’s ‘Merkava’ tank fourth best in the world, with Russia taking first place. The ‘Merkava’ has incredible protective armor from enemy fire due to placing the engine in the front, protecting those inside. The sharply-angled front and the turret give excellent armored defense as well as allowing for easily replacing broken armor quickly if stuck on the field.

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Merkava Mark 4 near Gaza (Photo: MCT)

Please pray for those who serve in the IDF tanks, that they would be kept safe in battle and during training.


INDIA COMMEMORATES 10 YEARS SINCE TERROR ATTACKS CLAIM ONE HUNDRED SIXTY-SIX PEOPLE

Gunmen staged coordinated attacks in late 2008 on two luxury hotels and a crowded train station, holding the city under siege for three days. One hundred sixty-six people were killed in the attacks carried out by Pakistani terrorists. These terrorists also targeted the Mumbai Chabad House, run by a Jewish couple who were killed along with six Israeli guests. Their young son and nanny escaped and were brought to Israel, where the son’s grandparents raised him. India commemorated these tragic events with ceremonies across the city.

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(Photo: AFP)

Please pray for those who still suffer from the memories of the attacks.


EIGHTEEN PEOPLE FILE LAWSUIT AGAINST AIRBNB

Airbnb, a website that helps travelers find places to stay, recently removed rental advertisements from Jewish people listed to live in the ‘settlements’ of Israel. Crying BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions), eighteen people have taken Airbnb to court to remove this new policy and allow Jewish settlements in the West Bank to list places to stay on their website. The Israeli government has done the same to stop the discrimination since Airbnb allows rental listings in other contested global locations.

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Airbnb’s CEO Brian Chesky. (Photo: Bloomberg)

Please pray for those who seek to harm and discredit Israel through the BDS movement.


RISE IN ANTISEMITISM IN EUROPE

A recent CNN poll showed increased amounts of antisemitism throughout Europe, especially in France. Since the start of 2018, France has seen a 69 percent increase in antisemitic attacks. Recently, a five million euro fund has been set up by the government to combat antisemitism in schools and online hate speech. It was also reported that one in five French adults, ages eighteen to thirty-four, have never heard of the Holocaust. Although the reality is that the Holocaust is being taught, many teachers find it hard to teach the subject, or the students are non-receptive to learning it. There is a new antisemitism that consists of old clichés about Jewish people coupled with a hatred for them because of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. France has the largest Jewish population in Europe as well as a large Muslim population. Since 2000, fifty-five thousand French Jews have immigrated to Israel.

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Please pray for the safety and protection of the French Jewish community.