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Hamas Operative Who Planned Terrorist Attacks in Israel Captured

By DEBKAfile & IsraelNationalNews.com

It was revealed on Wednesday that a 23-year-old Palestinian, Malk Nazaar Youssef Kazmaar, was indicted March 30 on charges of planning to carry out terrorist attacks in Israel. According to the indictment, he was recruited by the Hamas command in Northern Cyprus where he lived for the past few years.

The Palestinian was said to have admitted under questioning that in January 2016 he was sent to a military camp in Syria where he underwent various types of where he learned shooting tactics and theoretical material on how to create various explosive devices. In January 2017, shortly before returning to the West Bank, he met in Istanbul with Hamas activists who instructed him to recruit new members in Israeli territory.

Following his arrest, the terror suspect handed over encrypted memory cards that he received from his handlers in Turkey. The cards were later found to contain a large amount of instructions and data intended to help him carry out attacks. The Palestinian was arrested on February 26 after the IDF received precise intelligence from the Shin Bet domestic security service.

Kazmaar was arrested upon his return to Judea and Samaria, before he could carry out his orders. During the interrogation, he mentioned programs placed on memory cards received from terrorists in Turkey. These programs were hidden so they would no be immediately visible upon use of the card, and were found to contain extensive instructions for planning and carrying out attacks. A Samaria military court filed an indictment against Kazmaar, accusing him of committing severe security crimes.


Abdullah Welcomes Trump's Engagement in Israel-Palestinian Peace

By Reuters

President Donald Trump met Wednesday with King Abdullah II of Jordan in the White House. At the end of the meeting, Trump said at a joint press conference that he is "working 'very, very hard' to try to create peace between Palestinians and Israel."

King Abdullah praised Trump's commitment to addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and said he had hope for the Arab League peace initiative proposed for the region. "The president's early engagement in bringing the Palestinians and Israelis together has been a very encouraging sign for all of us," Abdullah said at a White House news conference with the new American president. Abdullah said the Arab League peace initiative "offers a historic reconciliation between Israel and the Palestinians."

Israel Announces Plan for Train Line from Haifa to Gulf states Via Jordan

By DEBKAfile & YnetNews.com

Israeli Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz announced Wednesday a plan to establish a rail line running from the port city of Haifa, via the Sheikh Hussein Bridge on the Jordanian border, to the city of Irbid in Jordan and from there to Persian Gulf states such as Saudi Arabia.

Katz said at a press conference that the line would transform Jordan into a regional transportation center; provide the Palestinians with direct access to Haifa's port and the Arab world; and give Arab countries such as Jordan and the Gulf states access to the Mediterranean. The minister added that he had presented the plan to President Donald Trump's special envoy Jason Greenblatt who Katz said was "deeply impressed" by it.

The plan has been named "Rails for Regional Peace," and maps out the route of the train, which will depart from Haifa, travel to Beit She'an and pass through the Jordan River Crossing before arriving in Irbid, in Jordan's capital of Amman. Katz stated the Arab nations are seriously considering the blueprints and said "I'm optimistic about our ability to promote it."

Citing the potential benefits of his plan, the minister explained that the plan would also allow Palestinians access not only to the Port of Haifa but also to Arab countries, which will in turn be connected to the Mediterranean Sea by land.

In the minister's opinion, the initiative will prevent a humanitarian crisis and promote economic prosperity, while serving as "a base for future political endeavors. The regional railways have economic and strategic logic to them," Katz pointed out. "It will allow safe and cheap land access for Arab states to the Mediterranean Sea. For example, the sea path from the Port of Dammam, Saudi Arabia's main port, to the Mediterranean Sea through the Persian Gulf is 6,000 kilometers long. By land, it's just 600 kilometers."


Steven Spielberg's Favorite Matzah Brei Recipe

By JTA

Why is Steven Spielberg's matzah brei different from all others? The Academy Award-winning director — the force behind "Schindler's List," "Saving Private Ryan," "E.T." and scores of other popular films — has shared his family matzah brei recipe with Goop, Gwyneth Paltrow's upscale food and lifestyle website.

"Uncle Morty's Gourmet Matzos Brie," as it's called at Goop, calls for the slightly unusual method of soaking matzah pieces in milk instead of water. It also includes chopped onion — placing it definitively in the savory, not sweet, category.

It also specifies a specific brand of matzah: Streit's, "in business since 1925," the recipe notes. Streit's made headlines when it closed its iconic Lower East Side factory in 2015 and moved production to New Jersey.

Goop also published Jewish food maven Joan Nathan's matzah brie recipe in a special "Kosher For Passover" section. (By contrast, Nathan's recipe uses water and schmaltz and calls for a sweet topping, such as cinnamon, honey or maple syrup.)

Matzah brei, which is essentially pieces of matzah fried with eggs, is having a bit of a moment: A specialty matzah brei stand popped up at a New York City market last fall, and a slew of new recipes have been published online.


A Video About Israel That Went Viral

By IsraelNationalNews.com

With almost 100,000 views on YouTube, the English video below (with Hebrew subtitles) presents the case for Israel in 9 minutes. Using visual aids in the form of maps, the presenter guides viewers to an increased understanding of Israel's strategic value to the West and what exactly the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is all about. See https://youtu.be/GUNN5QwQh6s


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