This Week Today - Current Events from Israel

Ben Packer,

לבן ריק
לבן ריק
צילום: ערוץ 7
Ben Packer
Originally from Petersburg, Virginia, Ben Packer moved to Israel in 1999, where he served in the IDF's Givati Brigade in the Gaza Strip. Ben served as a Rabbi on campus at Univ. of North Carolina and at Duke Univ. Ben now serves as Director of the Jerusalem Heritage House ( and Co-Director of Young Jewish Conservatives ( He lives in the Old City of Jerusalem with his wife and 6 children....

The boys were rescued!!! As I'm sure everyone is aware, the 12 boys and their coach in Thailand were all rescued and are recovering in a nearby hospital. A truly glorious moment for the world and mankind. Many countries participated in various ways for the rescue to happen. Israel was, of course, one of them. No muslim countries on the list. Shocking? Not really. I don't think anyone would suggest that they didn't want to help. And historically, muslim countries led the world in many fields, like medicine, math, science, philosophy, pretty much everything. Just these days they don't have much to offer. That's what happens when you declare war on the Jewish People for many decades - "Those who bless the Jewish People will be blessed and those that curse...." 

Mostly this week was a continuation of last week:

-Syria still taking back more land from the sunni rebels, with massive help from Russia. 

-Israeli Government Coalition still teetering on the brink of collapse over ultra-Orthodox draft legislation

-The two illegal arab encampments that the Israeli supreme court has ruled must be destroyed have still not been destroyed. But they will be. Probably soon. 

Alot of potential legislation was introduced this past Sunday - which was the last opportunity for members of the knesset to propose legislation for this summer session. Much of it has been proposed in the past and is decidedly "right-wing" legislation. However, every time these "right-wing" ideas come up, they are subsequently shot down by the "right wing" government. Time and again. What the heck is going on?!!

Alot is going on. A good amount of this "right-wing" legislation is in essence going for the jugular of the "two state solution". Bills for "Greater Jerusalem", cancelling the disengagement law in the Shomron, removing Judea and Samaria from the sole authority of the Supreme Court and moving that authority to the Jerusalem District Court. Any one of these is a potential knock out punch to the left and their "peace" schemes. It would seem that Netanyahu and his henchman just aren't ready for this step to be taken. They want to allow the illusion of the potential for a two state solution to continue, for now. Of course, on the ground, things are constantly happening that make a two state solution less likely every day. This is not happening as fast as the right wing would like, but its certainly happening nonetheless. 

Israel shot down a syrian drone today with a Patriot Missile. As always, syria will be pay dearly for that one. 

Also this week, Public Security Gilad Erdan dramatically changed the regulations for who can receive a handgun permit in Israel. Now anyone with a certain level of training from the IDF (07) is eligible to apply and receive a permit, regardless of where they live and work. Remains to be seen how many Israelis will take up this new rather expensive opportunity, but my guess is quite a few. 

Kites of fire and explosives continue to fly from Gaza into Israel on a daily basis. Me thinks cancelling the disengagement law in the Shomron doesn't go far enough. 

Ben Packer

Old City, Jerusalem