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....

This Week Today

Current Events from Israel

The summer has started. Things are heating up. The police are incompetent. And the Israeli election season is endless. Yet, we must persist. And you must read on. 

Iran Continues to be Up to No Good

Iran had a very busy week filled with terrorist acts. Fresh off of attacking numerous oil tankers in the Persian Gulf, there were at least two incidents this week in which Iranian proxies in Iraq fired missiles at a US army base and at American business interests. No casualties, but definitely an intensification. As of now, President Trump is sending an additional 1,000 US soldiers to the region. Rhetoric continues to ratchet up on both sides. Not saying there is no peaceful way out of this, but tough to imagine one right now. 

Rocket from Gaza Hits Yeshiva in Sderot

A rocket was fired from Gaza and scored a direct hit on a Yeshiva in Sderot. Fortunately the students had left that area a short time before the impact. Not sure why that matters when it comes to retaliation, but clearly it does. Not much retaliation. Its already as if it never happened. 

Even for Arabs...

There are two big accusations against arab suspects in Israel this week. No one has been convicted of either yet, so there is some kind of presumption of...who are we kidding? 

1) The first incident involves the stealing for 4 Torah Scrolls from a Synagogue in the Israeli city of Bnei Brak. Additionally, damage was done to the Synagogue and other scrolls were thrown on the floor. The police found the Torah Scrolls earlier this week in a sheep pen in an arab village in the Shomron (Samaria). Way to stay classy. There will be a parade in the next few days of the Torah Scrolls be returned to the Synagogue along with a new one just completed being written. Constant theme here. "But as much as they would afflict them, so did they multiply and so did they gain strength" (Exodus 1:12) 

2) Now this next one remains somewhat unclear and the Israeli police seem to be having a tough time with it as of late. I personally find provocative Mexican weatherwomen to be more reliable and competent than the Israeli police on pretty much everything, including both the weather and policing. With that profound point already made, an arab school janitor is accused of raping a 7 year old Jewish girl that he lured with candy. Additionally, it is suspected that other arab workers at the school helped with the rape. The main suspect has been arrested and charged. There is suspicion that he may be involved in additional cases as well. For now, the police seem to have some problems with their case, mostly involving timing and medical reports. Definitely some surprises coming. Needless to say, this case has sent shock waves through all of Israeli society, except for women's and left-wing groups, they apparently don't find this case interesting at all. 

Meanwhile in the Old City of Jerusalem yesterday a group of arab adults attacked a group of Jewish teenagers. The Jewish youngsters beat the hell out of the arabs, so the Israeli police beat and arrested the Jews. Furthermore, its now being reported that 60 armenian religious students beat 2 Jewish teenagers on Shavuos in the Old City. One had to taken by ambulance to the hospital. No arrests made.  I really wish they'd put those Mexican weatherwomen in charge over here, we'd all be safer.  

Israeli Election Update

-Squabbling in the "Blue and White" party. It would seem that party co-leader Moshe Yaalon has finally said (adamantly) what everyone else must be thinking: that anti-Judaism Yair Lapid is dragging the party down. Since there is still time to get rid of him, things could get quite interesting. The reality is that if Prime Minster Netanyahu stays loyal to the Ultra-Orthodox parties and vice versa, "Blue and White" will never have a chance of being in a coalition government, as long as they have Lapid. I guess someone had to say it already. Its nice to see Moshe Yaalon finally contributing. 

-Alot of talk about all the "right-wing" parties uniting before the election. Polls indicate that Ayelet Shaked is the most popular person to lead such an arrangement. As the only secular candidate, this would certainly be ironic. Regardless of who leads, its seems clear that Shaked and Naftali Bennett will be back, at least running together, with their old party. This brings back the original issues of whether or not Otzma and Zehut can also be brought in under one umbrella. I think this is going to be alot more problematic than most people think, but I hope I'm wrong.