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Israel Imposes Naval Blockade on Gaza Strip

By IsraelNationalNews.com

The Israeli navy has imposed a naval blockade on the Gaza Strip to prevent the terrorists holding kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit from smuggling him out of the Gaza Strip. Ships are patrolling the coast to ensure that no vessel leaves Gaza. Usage of speedboats by Arabs has been banned. Arab fishermen are only permitted to use boats with limited speed. In addition, Israel has requested Egyptian authorities to close the Philadelphi corridor to prevent Shalit from being smuggled out across that route.


Israel Masses Troops at Gaza Border

By VOA News and IsraelNationalNews.com

Israel is threatening harsh retaliation after Palestinian terrorists kidnapped an Israeli soldier near the Gaza Strip. Three Palestinian terrorist groups have demanded that Israel release all jailed Palestinian women under 18, in exchange for information about a kidnapped Israeli soldier

Thousands of soldiers from the Golani and Givati brigades are also converging on the area as well as tons of logistic equipment, mobile toilets, showers, and food. Morale is reported to be good. "We are prepared for anything," said one soldier, "and if we have to go in and bring the soldier home we will do it."


A senior source in Israel's defense establishment said that the Palestinian Authority's Hamas government would "cease to exist" if kidnapped Gilad Shalit, is not returned to Israel alive.

Shalit, 19, was abducted Sunday when eight PA terrorists tunneled underground from Gaza and attacked an army outpost, just over the border from Gaza. Two other soldiers were killed in the attack, and another was moderately wounded.

Monday, Israel gave the Palestinians an ultimatum: release the kidnapped soldier within 48 hours, or face the wrath of the Israeli army. "I have ordered military commanders to prepare for a major operation" in Gaza," said Prime Minster Ehud Olmert. He said Israel would strike hard at terrorist organizations and their commanders. "No one will be immune," he added.

Israel is threatening to target the leaders of the ruling Islamic terrorist group Hamas because gunmen from the group took part in the raid on an army base, in which the soldier was kidnapped.

The Hamas-led Palestinian government, already hit hard by U.S. and European sanctions because of its refusal to renounce violence, distanced itself from the attack. It urged the captors of the soldier not to harm him. A spokesman said, "We ask the Palestinian factions to keep him alive, and to deal with him with good way,"

Hamas political leaders are said to be seeking the immediate release of the soldier, but the military wing of the group may have other ideas. In the past, terrorists have used captured Israeli soldiers as bargaining chips for the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners.

The deal was detailed in a pamphlet released to media outlets on Monday and signed by Hamas' military wing, the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) and a new organization, the Army of Islam. Both the PRC and the Army of Islam are offshoots of Hamas.

Olmert officially sealed off the Gaza Strip. "By my order and that of the Defense Minister, the Gaza Strip is closed by sea and by land." Olmert told reporters that he holds the Palestinian Authority responsible for the life of the kidnapped soldier. He also informed a closed Knesset committee meeting that he would not negotiate with the terrorists. "I gave the orders to our military commanders to prepare the army for a broad and ongoing military operation to strike the terrorist leaders and all those involved," Olmert said. "It should be clear. There will be immunity for no one."

Meanwhile, there are growing concerns that Shalit may not be safe much longer. Former PA Minister of Prisoner Affairs Sufian Abu Zaida warned in an interview on Army Radio on Monday that the IDF had no chance of rescuing the young soldier in a military operation. "Even if the IDF knew where the soldier was, which apartment he was in and even in which room he was placed," Abu Zaida, "there would be zero chance of rescuing the soldier alive in a military operation."

Terrorists said Monday that they would not provide any information about Shalit unless Israel agreed to release PA prisoners who were under age 18 or female.

A senior intelligence officer reported Monday that Hizbullah is prepared to open a second front against Israel in the event that Israel launches a ground incursion into the Gaza Strip.

"Hizbullah is getting ready on the northern border in case Israel enters Gaza and they would want to open a second front. We are ready to absorb [an attack] and respond," said the source. The officer was speaking after a gathering of the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

Many Arabs are urging Hamas to keep Shalit alive so that he can be traded for imprisoned terrorists. "This is a great opportunity to release thousands of prisoners," said Abu Adham, whose brother, Ali, has been in jail for nearly ten years. "We have been waiting for a prisoner exchange for many years. We have no doubt that Israel will be prepared to release thousands of Palestinians in exchange for the soldier. We don't want to see only a few hundred prisoners released."

Arab terrorists imprisoned in Israel are also expecting a prisoner swap and have already started deciding who should go free first. Muayad Nasrallah, who is serving a 19-year sentence, said that preference should be given to prisoners serving long prison terms. "We hope the kidnapped soldier will be used to secure the release of as many prisoners as possible, especially those who have been in jail for many years. We urge the kidnappers not to harm the soldier so that he can be exchanged for prisoners."

Likud leaders attacked the government over its handling of the crisis in the wake of the Kerem Shalom attack. "Unfortunately the prime minister hasn't learned anything," said former Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. "A change in direction is needed immediately, such as a massive reaction and the toppling of the Hamas government. The soldier can be freed. We need an aggressive approach and not the fawning of the government."

Knesset member Silvan Shalom also criticized Olmert's policy. "The policy we should have taken is what we said before disengagement, that if there will be shooting, the reaction will be painful. There is no difference between Hamas' diplomatic and security wings; they are both deeply involved in terror. I hope the waiting won't make us miss an opportunity. I recommended the assassination of Hamas leaders."

(Editor's Note: You can upload your opinion to the Internet by going to comments.americanjewishpress.com)


ADL: Neo-Nazi Movement Strengthens in USA

By YnetNews.com

The National Socialist Movement, a Minneapolis-based hate group known for its Nazi uniforms and open display of explicit Nazi symbols, has outpaced its rivals on the far right in both membership and activity, earning it the dubious distinction of being the largest neo-Nazi group in the United States today, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

With chapters in 32 states and a growing Internet presence that includes online radio and a "news service" geared to white supremacists, the NSM has substantially raised its profile in the last year by holding public events in various cities while dressed in full Nazi regalia and shouting "Seig Heil!," according to ADL.

Klan members and other white supremacists have joined NSM rallies to denounce Jews, Blacks, Hispanics, immigrants and gays.

At the same time, the National Alliance - formerly the largest hate group in America and for more than two decades a formidable presence on the white supremacist scene - has continued its steady decline, with the arrest of its current leader being the latest blow to its ability to effectively recruit and organize.

"The National Socialist Movement's anti-Semitic and racist public demonstrations and activities make them an attractive alternative to formerly prevailing extremist groups such as the National Alliance, who have been weakened," said ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman.

"While the NSM's rhetoric is virtually unchanged, and their tactics derive from the playbooks of others, they have made inroads by taking advantage of a power vacuum and seizing on the technologies of the Internet to spread their particular brand of anti-Semitism and hate."

According to ADL, increased cooperation between the NSM and like-minded groups has helped bolster the group's image in extremist circles while swelling its ranks with new recruits willing to spread its message of racism, bigotry and anti-Semitism.

The group is escalating its activity this summer, with NSM-sponsored rallies scheduled to take place in Olympia, WA; Fairdale, KY; Columbus, OH and elsewhere, as well as a hate music concert planned for August in NC.

Videos taken of NSM rallies have found their way to popular Internet Web portals for home video sharing, enabling the group to garner additional attention as the videos have taken on a life of their own in cyberspace. Links to such videos have been widely forwarded via e-mail among non-racists who found them offensive, resulting in a spike in complaints to ADL about the videos and their presence on mainstream video-sharing sites.


When Should Tel Aviv Mark its Centennial?

By YnetNews.com

While the city of Tel Aviv is all caught up in preparations for its centennial birthday in 2009, a new research recently published states that the city was actually founded in 1906, and that its birthday should therefore be celebrated this year.

Prof. Yossi Katz, who chairs the program for History of the Jewish National Fund and its Enterprises at the Department of Geography in Bar Ilan University, is the man behind the research.

"Tel Aviv was founded in 1906 not in 1909," Katz explained. "At the same year the 'Ahuzat Bait' company was established and between the years of 1906-1909 the company purchased land and borrowed money from The Jewish National Fund. It was then decided to build the neighborhood not adjacent to Jaffa but farther out. In 1909, a picture was taken when the plot lottery took place, but except for that photo, the date itself has no meaning."

Officials at the Tel Aviv municipality were puzzled by the timing of this revelation. "There is a difference of opinions about Tel Aviv's exact birthday. Some believe that the establishment of the Neve Tzedek neighborhood in 1887 outside Jaffa's walls is the correct date. The official accepted date is April 11, 1909 when the famous plot lottery took place", a Tel Aviv municipality official commented.

Report: Hassidic Rabbi Frequents Hookers

By YnetNews.com

The Lubavitcher rabbi is most likely spinning in his grave. One of his Hassidim was photographed consorting with prostitutes and announced on TV that, for religious reasons, he is unable to shake hands with a woman.

He regularly frequents brothels and garters especially turn him on and it was reported that he pays extra for special sexual services. No, we're not talking about a high-class pimp or an executive in the pornography industry, but rather an ultra-Orthodox Lubavitcher rabbi.

The bestselling tabloid in the world, News of the World, published on Sunday the scandalous story of Manchester resident, Rabbi Dovid Jaffe. Jaffe, married and the father of four, heads the Lubavitcher center in Manchester, England and prepares youths for their bar-mitzvah ceremony.

Recently, he appeared on BBC 4 as a guest on a show featuring Jewish customs. While on television, he described the difficulties in maintaining an ultra-Orthodox lifestyle in England and went on to say that, for religious reasons, he cannot even shake hands with a woman.

The "newspaper" said that it turns out that while Jaffe is not prepared to clasp hands with women, he is more than happy to clasp plenty of other body parts. He was photographed recently visiting the "Angels" house of ill repute in Manchester and cavorting with the women there.

The weekly paper that exposed Jaffe's exploits says that, for half an hour of sex, the rabbi is willing to pay 40 pounds, 50 if oral sex is also part of the package. He prefers to have his women dressed in garters.

"He's a frequent client here," reveals one of the prostitutes. "He's a man who knows exactly what he wants." One woman, who in a moment of boredom perhaps wanted to purify herself, happened to watch the BBC production and discovered that her client was a rabbi. His remarks on the show infuriated her.

"How hypocritical can you be? On one hand, he won't shake hands with women and, on the other hand, he comes around all the time and has very bizarre requests. Only a day before preaching on television, he came here and had a good time."

When he arrived for a visit at the house following his TV appearance, one of the prostitutes told him, "I don't know whether to ask for money or an autograph."




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