Connect with us
Seder Passover
Israel Bonds RRSP
JNF Canada

Israel

Israeli security virtually air tight, says Israel national police spokesperson

Micky RosenfeldBy MYRON LOVE Despite living under constant threat of terrorist attack, Israel remains one of the safest countries in the world in which to live or visit. It is precisely because of that constant threat that hangs over the country that Israel has developed a security blanket that is at the same time, unobtrusive, yet virtually impregnable, and light years ahead of any other democratic country in the world.

As this writer can attest from my visit to Israel last March, you can travel the length and breadth of the country with no more sense of danger than travelling about Winnipeg.
As explained by Micky Rosenfeld, Israel national police spokesman to the world press, Israel’s security is ensured by a combination of rapid response – aided by the most up-to-date technology – to any incidents that occur, a proactive policy aimed at preventing potential terrorist attacks, outreach to Muslim and Christian Arab communities within Israel, and the dedicated efforts of the country’s 29,000 national police officers (compared New York City’s 30,000-strong police force, Rosenfeld pointed out).
The British-born Rosenfeld was in Winnipeg on Tuesday, September 12, courtesy of the Jewish National Fund of Canada, Manitoba and Saskatchewan office. He spoke in the evening to a packed audience at the Shaarey Zedek Synagogue. The presentation was sponsored by Larry and Tova Vickar and the Asper Foundation.
Rosenfeld, a veteran of the IDF’s Givati Brigade, noted that he is responsible for relations with over 1,000 foreign media outlets worldwide. “I try to communicate and explain complex issues in a calm and reasonable manner,” he said.
He noted that Israel is divided into seven security districts with Jerusalem – including the Temple Mount, the Western Wall and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher – as
the epicenter. Jerusalem, he reported, is the most active – and sensitive – area in terms of terrorist threats. Whereas terrorism accounts for only 20% of violent incidents (as compared to criminal activity) in the rest of Israel, in Jerusalem, terrorism accounts for 80% of violent acts. During the current so-called “knife intifada” over the past two years – during which 42 Israelis (plus one tourist and one foreign worker) have been killed (along with more than 200 attackers), almost all of the attacks have taken place in and around Jerusalem’s Old City and the Hebron area.
Rosenfeld noted that he starts off every day reviewing the overnight anti-terrorist operations. “Almost every night, there are between 10 and 20 attempted terrorist attacks,” he reported. “Proactive policing ensures that the attacks don’t take place. Because of the sensitivity of the religious sites in Jerusalem and the large number of tourists that come to the city, we can’t afford any major incidents.”
Security is enhanced throughout the Old City (as we witnessed firsthand during our JNF tour in March) by CCTV cameras that blanket the Old City. There is a camera covering every street in and around the Old City relaying real time information to police officers viewing wall to wall TV screens stationed in a central location. Any suspicious activity is instantly relayed to officers on patrol.
“Our patrol officers know which direction suspects are going and what they are wearing,” Rosenfeld said. “Our response time to any incident is four to seven minutes.”
He added that the national police are unofficially supplemented by another 30,000 veterans of the IDF who are licensed to carry guns and intervene in a terrorist attack.
“Our response is commensurate with the threat level,” he said. “Wherever possible, we use non-lethal means – stun grenade and tear gas – and we work to contain riots as quickly as possible.”
Rosenfeld also emphasized the importance of communication and co-ordination in dealing with critical incidents. That includes co-ordination with the WAQF, the Muslim religious authorities on the Temple Mount, the Israel Defense Force, rescue and response teams, hospitals, municipalities and the media.
He also pointed out police efforts to visit Israeli-Arab communities, meet with the leaders and community members and establish positive relationships. He added that 10% of the members of the national police are Arab Israelis – Christian, Muslim, Druze and Bedouin. The two Israeli police officers who were murdered in July while guarding the Temple Mount were Druze.
As to this current round of troubles, Rosenfeld noted that the typical terrorist is between 20 and 30, clean shaven and wearing jeans. Also, 34 terrorist attacks have been carried out by females. For the most part, he said, the attacks since 2015 have been “lone wolf” attacks inspired by social media and incitement by the Palestinian leadership calling on Palestinians to protect the AL Aqsa Mosque (which isn’t in any danger).
He explained how the Israeli security services have been combatting the “Knife Intifada” (there have also been attacks with vehicles, rocks and guns) by monitoring social media trying to identify users who may attempt attacks and shutting down some social media that are openly inciting violence.
Rosenfeld was asked if ISIS is active among Palestinian or Israeli Arabs. While there has been one or two attacks in Tel Aviv carried out by Israeli Arabs in the name of ISIS, Rosenfeld reported that the terrorist organization has been prevented from taking root in Israel. Israeli security prevents suspected ISIS supporters from leaving the country. And potential ISIS terrorists are tracked through Facebook and other social media.
Rosenfeld noted that Israeli security personnel work closely with their European and American counterpart to counter international terrorism through intelligence sharing and joint training exercises. But the challenge in Western Europe is formidable, he said.
He noted that in England alone there are an estimated 950 former ISIS fighters who have returned from Syria to England. “It takes 50-60 security officers to track each potential terrorist,” he pointed out.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Israel

Hamas murdered their friend. Now, they help Israeli soldiers to keep his memory alive

David Newman (right): David died helping to save the lives of others who were at the music festival on October 7 when Hamas massacred hundreds of attendees

By VIRGINIA ALLEN (The Daily Signal) David Newman sent a text to a friend the morning of Saturday, Oct. 7. Something terrible had happened. Word quickly spread among Newman’s group of friends, who had known each other since high school.
Newman, 25, had traveled the night before to the music festival in southern Israel, close to the border with the Gaza Strip. It was supposed to be a fun weekend with his girlfriend “celebrating life,” something Newman, who served with the Israel Defense Forces, was good at and loved to do, friend Gidon Hazony recalls.
When Hazony learned that Newman, his longtime friend, was in danger, he and another friend decided they were “going to go down and try and save him.” Trained as a medic and armed with a handgun and bulletproof vest, Hazony started driving south from Jerusalem.
Hazony and his friend ended up joining with other medical personnel and “treated probably around 50 soldiers and civilians in total that day,” Hazony recalls, but they kept trying to make it south to rescue Newman.

But the two “never made it down to the party, and that’s probably for the best,” Hazony says, “because that area was completely taken over by terrorists. And if we had gone down there, I think we would’ve been killed.”
Hazony later learned that Hamas terrorists had murdered Newman on Oct. 7, but not before Newman had saved nearly 300 lives, including the life of his girlfriend.
When the terrorists began their attack on the music festival, many attendees began running to their cars. But Newman and his girlfriend encountered a police officer who warned them to run the opposite direction because the terrorists were near the vehicles, says David Gani, another friend of Newman’s.
Newman “ran in the opposite direction with his girlfriend and whoever else he could kind of corral with him,” Gani explains during an interview on “The Daily Signal Podcast.”
“They saw two industrial garbage cans, big containers, and so David told everyone, ‘Hide, hide in those containers,’” Gani says. “And so what he did over the course of the next few hours is, he would take people and … he was this big guy, and he would just chuck them in that container. And then he would go in, wait, wait till the coast is clear, and then he’d go back out, find more people, put them in there.”
Newman’s actions that day, and the atrocities Hazony and so many others in Israel witnessed Oct. 7, led Hazony, Gani, and several friends to quit their jobs and set up a nonprofit called Soldiers Save Lives. The organization is working to collect tactical and humanitarian aid for the Israel Defense Forces, or IDF.
According to the group’s website, Soldiers Save Lives has supplied over 20 IDF units and civilian response teams “with protective and self-defense gear.”
Gani, board chairman, chief financial officer, and chief technology officer of Soldiers Save Lives, and Hazony, president of the organization, recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to raise support and awareness for their mission to provide IDF troops with needed supplies.
If you would like to find out more about Soldiers Save Lives or donate to them, go to https://www.soldierssavelives.org/
Reprinted with permission.

Continue Reading

Israel

Our New Jewish Reality

Indigo bookstore in Toronto defaced

By HENRY SREBRNIK Since Oct. 7, we Jews have been witnessing an ongoing political and psychological pogrom. True, there have been no deaths (so far), but we’ve seen the very real threat of mobs advocating violence and extensive property damage of Jewish-owned businesses, and all this with little forceful reaction from the authorities.
The very day after the carnage, Canadians awoke to the news that the deadliest day for Jews since the Holocaust had inspired sustained celebrations in its major cities. And they have continued ever since. I’d go so far as to say the Trudeau government has, objectively, been more interested in preventing harm to Gazans than caring about the atrocities against Israelis and their state.
For diaspora Jews, the attacks of Oct. 7 were not distant overseas events and in this country since then they have inspired anti-Semitism, pure and simple, which any Jew can recognize. Even though it happened in Israel, it brought back the centuries-old memories of defenseless Jews being slaughtered in a vicious pogrom by wild anti-Semites.
I think this has shocked, deeply, most Jews, even those completely “secular” and not all that interested in Judaism, Israel or “Zionism.” Jewish parents, especially, now fear for their children in schools and universities. The statements universities are making to Jewish students across the country could not be clearer: We will not protect you, they all but scream. You’re on your own.
But all this has happened before, as we know from Jewish history. Long before Alfred Dreyfus and Theodor Herzl, the 1881 pogroms in tsarist Russia led to an awakening of proto-Zionist activity there, with an emphasis on the land of Israel. There were soon new Jewish settlements in Palestine.
The average Jew in Canada now knows that his or her friend at a university, his co-worker in an office, and the people he or she socializes with, may in fact approve, or at least not disapprove, of what happened that day in Israel. Acquaintances or even close friends may care far more about Israel killing Palestinians in Gaza. Such people may even believe what we may call “Hamas pogrom denial,” already being spread. Many people have now gone so far in accepting the demonization of Israel and Jews that they see no penalty attached to public expressions of Jew-hatred. Indeed, many academics scream their hatred of Israel and Jews as loud as possible.
One example: On Nov. 10, Toronto officers responded to a call at an Indigo bookstore located in the downtown. It had been defaced with red paint splashed on its windows and the sidewalk, and posters plastered to its windows.
The eleven suspects later arrested claimed that Indigo founder Heather Reisman (who is Jewish) was “funding genocide” because of her financial support of the HESEG Foundation for Lone Soldiers, which provides scholarships to foreign nationals who study in Israel after serving in the Israeli armed forces. By this logic, then, most Jewish properties and organizations could be targeted, since the vast majority of Jews are solidly on Israel’s side.
Were these vandals right-wing thugs or people recently arrived from the Middle East? No, those charged were mostly white middle-class professionals. Among them are figures from academia, the legal community, and the public education sector. Four are academics connected to York University (one of them a former chair of the Sociology Department) and a fifth at the University of Toronto; two are elementary school teachers; another a paralegal at a law firm.
Were their students and colleagues dismayed by this behaviour? On the contrary. Some faculty members, staff and students at the university staged a rally in their support. These revelations have triggered discussions about the role and responsibilities of educators, given their influential positions in society.
You’ve heard the term “quiet quitting.” I think many Jews will withdraw from various clubs and organizations and we will begin to see, in a sense like in the 1930s, a reversal of assimilation, at least in the social sphere. (Of course none of this applies to Orthodox Jews, who already live this way.)
Women in various feminist organizations may form their own groups or join already existing Jewish women’s groups. There may be an increase in attendance in K-12 Jewish schools. In universities, “progressive” Jewish students will have to opt out of organizations whose members, including people they considered friends, have been marching to the slogan “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” and similar eliminationist rhetoric, while waving Palestinian flags.
This will mostly affect Jews on the left, who may be supporters of organizations which have become carriers of anti-Semitism, though ostensibly dealing with “human rights,” “social justice,” and even “climate change.”
Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg took part in a demonstration outside the Israeli Embassy in Stockholm on Oct. 22 in which she chanted “crush Zionism” along with hundreds of other anti-Israel protesters. Israel is now unthinkingly condemned as a genocidal apartheid settler-colonialist state, indeed, the single most malevolent country in the world and the root of all evil.
New York Times Columnist Bret Stephens expressed it well in his Nov. 7 article. “Knowing who our friends aren’t isn’t pleasant, particularly after so many Jews have sought to be personal friends and political allies to people and movements that, as we grieved, turned their backs on us. But it’s also clarifying.”
Henry Srebrnik is a professor of political science at the University of Prince Edward Island in Charlottetown.

Continue Reading

Israel

Former Winnipegger Vivian Silver, at first thought to have been taken hostage, has now been confirmed dead

Jewish Post & News file photo

Former Winnipegger and well-known Israeli peace activist Vivian Silver has now been confirmed as having been killed during the massacre of Israelis and foreign nationals perpetrated by Hamas terrorists on October 7. Vivian, a resident of Kibbutz Be’eri was originally thought to be among the more than 1200 individuals who were taken hostage by Hamas.

To read the full story on the CBC website, go to https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/israel-gaza-vivian-silver-1.7027333

Continue Reading

Copyright © 2017 - 2023 Jewish Post & News