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Latest News in Israel – 19th September

Netanyahu, IDF work to stem tide of worsening security situation

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the IDF moved to clamp down on a possible escalation of Palestinian violence against Israelis, after six attacks occurred within 48 hours.

The latest attack took place at 6 a.m., when a Palestinian assailant stabbed and moderately injured an IDF officer on the outskirts of the Efrat settlement, in the Gush Etzion regional of the West Bank.

It followed stabbing attacks outside the Damascus Gate and Hebron, as well as a vehicular ramming incident at the outskirts of Kiryat Arba and a stoning attack outside the Ma’aleh Adumim settlement.

Israeli politicians have blamed the violence on Palestinian incitement, while Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said the problem was that his people had lost any hope of a better future. Netanyahu related to the weekend’s sudden uptick in terrorist attacks at the start of Sunday’s weekly cabinet meeting, noting that it is linked to the upcoming High Holy Days, a period which he said is always one of greater risk. He praised the IDF and police for quickly responding to the stabbing attacks.

Following the cabinet meeting he held security consultations about the situation with Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, and top police, Shin Bet, and IDF officials.

According to the PMO, Netanyahu directed the police to increase forces in Jerusalem, especially around the Old City and the Temple Mount, and to act with “determination” against any efforts to disturb the peace.

Netanyahu also called on Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein to continue to prevent Mks and ministers from visiting the Temple Mount, so as not to arouse passions at the site.

Netanyahu also called for the establishment of a response team to immediately dispel disinformation regarding Israel’s intentions on the Temple Mount. Last year’s wave of stabbing attacks began in October amid false rumors circulated on social media and elsewhere that Israel was taking steps to undermine the Muslim presence at the site.

To the IDF is seeing signs of violence worsening the security situation following a spate of terror attacks. It is concerned that incitement to violence, as well as each past incident could lead to further attacks. The sensitive October holidays could act as a further incentive for terrorists to strike, according to security assessments. In addition to sending the Kfir infantry brigade’s Shimshon Battalion to the Judea territorial brigade to beef up personnel numbers, soldiers have been deployed in high numbers around areas prone to attacks, with the goal of acting as a protective layer for civilians. The defense establishment is also pursuing intelligence channels to try and thwart future incidents.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday apparently attempted to distance the PA establishment from the recent spate of terror attacks against Israelis, saying the perpetrators conducted such violence on their own initiative.

He described the lone-wolf attackers as “martyrs” and youth who “have lost hope.” Without referring directly to this weekend’s spate of attacks, Abbas nonetheless asserted that the PA condemns terrorism in all of its forms.

“Everyday we have martyrs, and youth who are carrying knives,” he said at a meeting with Palestinian students and graduates on Venezuela’s Margarita Island, where he is attending a summit of the Non-Aligned Movement.

“Do not believe those who say there is someone pushing them [the attackers] or inciting them,” he added. “They do this on their own initiative, because they have lost hope and therefore go out with knives to carry out terrorist stabbings.” While Abbas called for acts of “peaceful popular resistance” against Israel, he said that “the hands of the Palestinians are extended for peace.”

Still, in the early hours of the morning a young Palestinian man, identified by Maan News Agency as Baha al-Din Muhammad Khalil Odeh, 20, attempted to infiltrate the Efrat settlement.

It marks the first time since the wave of Palestinian violence against Israelis began last year, that an attack has occurred on the edge of Efrat, even though repeated incidents have occurred at the nearby Gush Etzion junction.

Efrat’s security team had been on alert for hours prior to the attack after it saw a person wandering around 400 meters outside of the settlement and notified the IDF.

Eventually the Palestinian terrorist managed to get to the edge of the settlement and hid in the bushes. Around 6 a.m. he jumped out and stabbed the officer in his upper body.

The soldier was transported to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Medical Center in Ein Kerem.

The settlement decided to hold school as usual, but the IDF barred Palestinians from entering.

On Saturday the IDF decided to beef up its presence in the area of Hebron, in the West Bank, by sending an extra battalion to the area.

On Saturday, a solider was lightly stabbed in the Tel Rumeida area of Hebron, just one day after a soldier had been stabbed and severely injured in that same area the day before. Both Palestinian assailants were killed.

Also on Friday, a Palestinian man and woman attempted to execute a vehicular attack at the entrance to the Kiryat Arba settlement which is located just outside of Hebron. The male assailant was killed and the female assailant was wounded and taken to the hospital. Three Israeli teenagers who were at the scene were lightly wounded.

On the same day, a Jordanian assailant was killed as he attempted to stab border police officers at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem. He had entered the country the day before via the Allenby crossing.

Just outside of Jerusalem, Palestinians threw stones at a bus near the Ma’aleh Adumim settlement, lightly inuring the driver.  (Jerusalem Post)

Soldier stabbed in Efrat, sixth attack in 48 hours

An IDF officer was moderately to seriously wounded in a Palestinian stabbing attack in the West Bank settlement of Efrat Sunday morning, in the sixth incident of violence in the last two days.

It marks the first time since the wave of Palestinian violence against Israelis began last year, that an attack has occurred in Efrat, even though repeated incidents have occurred at the nearby Gush Etzion junction.

Efrat’s security team had been on alert for hours prior to the attack after it saw a person wandering around 400 meters outside of the settlement and notified the IDF.

(Security footage of terrorist infiltrating Efrat)

Eventually the Palestinian terrorist managed to infiltrate the settlement and hid in the bushes. Around 6 a.m. he jumped out and stabbed the officer in his upper body.

The soldier was transported to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Medical Center in Ein Kerem.

Another soldier shot and disabled the terrorist, who had a number of knives on his body. The terrorist was also transported to a nearby hospital.

In spite of the attack, the settlement decided to hold school as usual.

On Saturday the IDF decided to beef up its presence in the area of Hebron, in the West Bank, by sending an extra battalion to the area.

On Saturday, a solider was lightly stabbed in the Tel Rumeida area of Hebron, just one day after a soldier had been stabbed and severely injured in that same area the day before. Both Palestinian assailants were killed.

Also on Friday, a Palestinian man and woman attempted to execute a vehicular attack at the entrance to the Kiryat Arba settlement which is located just outside of Hebron. The male assailant was killed and the female assailant was wounded and taken to the hospital. Three Israeli teenagers who were at the scene were lightly wounded.

On the same day, a Jordanian assailant was killed as he attempted to stab border police officers at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem. He had entered the country the day before via the Allenby crossing.

Just outside of Jerusalem, Palestinians threw stones at a bus near the Ma’aleh Adumim settlement, lightly inuring the driver.   (Jerusalem Post)

Terror weekend continues: IDF soldier stabbed in Hebron

A terrorist stabbed an lightly wounded an IDF soldier from Nahal’s 50th Brigade in Hebron Saturday morning.

The soldier was injured at a security checkpoint near the Tel Rumeda neighborhood in the West Bank city of Hebron. The soldier was taken to hospital for treatment.

The soldiers on scene returned fire and neutralized the terrorist, who has been confirmed dead.

The incident came a day after four terrorist attacks by Palestinians against Israelis were perpetrated on Friday. The attacks marked a sudden resurgence of violence after months of relative calm.

A soldier was lightly stabbed in the face, before soldiers next to him shot and killed the assailant.

Earlier in the day a suspected terrorist of Jordanian nationality attempted to stab police officers at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate.

According to police, the terrorist walked out of the Damascus Gate with knives outstretched in both of his hands.

He headed to a Border Police unit that was standing guard by the gate and shouted out, “Allahu Akbar,’ a police spokesperson said.

A Border Police officer who was at the scene said that her back was to the terrorist, but she turned immediately after hearing his shouts and saw the knives.

“I immediately took a step back, drew my weapon and fired,” she said.

Her shot killed the the 28-year-old assailant who had entered Israel yesterday coming via the Allenby Bridge. The Jordan Ministry of Culture spokesman, Sabah al-Rifai, stated that Jordan is closely following the situation in order to understand what happened.

About an hour later two Palestinian terrorists, a man and a woman, tried to run down a group of soldiers at the entrance to the Kiryat Arba settlement near the West Bank city of Hebron.

Soldiers shot at both the assailants.

According to Maan News Agency, one of the assailants was Firas Khdour from Bani Naim near Hebron. He was accompanied by his fiancee Raghd Abdullah Khdour, whose sister attempted an attack in at the same intersection only a few months ago and was killed.

According to initial reports, the man was killed. Raghd arrived to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in serious condition from a bullet wound in her stomach.

Magen David Adom evacuated to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center three lightly wounded 15-year old boys from the scene.

After the incident was over, soldiers found a knife in the Palestinian vehicle.

Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City and the city of Kryat-Arba have been flashpoints for terror attacks during the wave of violence that began nearly a year ago.

The violence in Israel continued as a bus driver was injured on Highway 1 from Jerusalem to Ma’aleh Adumim after rocks and bottles of paint were thrown at the bus.

Police were searching for the suspects.  (Jerusalem Post)

2 Palestinians ram truck into West Bank bus stop, one of them killed

Israeli soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian man and seriously injured a woman during a car-ramming attack at a bus stop outside the Kiryat Arba settlement in the West Bank on Friday, the army said.

The driver and passenger were shot as they plowed their car into the bus stop at the Elias Junction near the settlement, the IDF said.

“Two assailants rammed a vehicle into a civilian bus stop at the Elias junction near the community of Kiryat Arba,” an army statement said. “Forces at the scene fired at the vehicle resulting in the death of one of the assailants while the other was wounded.”

The man was pronounced dead on the scene. The Palestinian woman was shot in the stomach and seriously injured. She received preliminary treatment at the scene, before being taken to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center, the hospital said.

Three Israeli teenagers — two boys and a girl — were also taken to Shaare Zedek, suffering from panic attacks and some light injuries that occurred while running away from the alleged car-ramming, the Magen David Adom ambulance service said.

Inside the suspects’ truck, IDF soldiers also found a knife, the army said.

The man was identified by Palestinian media as Firas al-Birawi Khadour, and the woman was named as Raghad Khadour from the nearby village of Bani Na’im.

According to Arabic media reports, the assailants were related to Majd Khadour, who rammed her car into the same Kiryat Arba bus stop in June.

The incident was the second attempted attack on Friday. Less than an hour before, police officers shot and killed a Jordanian man who they said was trying to stab one of them at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem.

Late Thursday night, IDF soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian suspect, Muhammad Ahmad Abed al-Fattah al-Sarrahin, in the city of Hebron — adjacent to Kiryat Arba — who fled as they attempted to arrest him.

“During an arrest operation in Beit Ula, security forces apprehended one suspect while another attempted to flee the building,” an Israeli army spokeswoman told AFP.

“During the pursuit a force opened fire, resulting in the suspect’s death.”

The Hebron area, where Palestinians, Israeli settlers and soldiers live in close proximity, has been a frequent scene of clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians over the past year, as well as terror attacks by Palestinian assailants.             (the Times of Israel)

Israeli soldier slashed in face in Hebron; assailant killed

An Israeli soldier was lightly wounded in a stabbing attack at a checkpoint in the West Bank city of Hebron on Friday, according to officials.

The assailant was shot and killed by forces at the Gilbert checkpoint near the Tel Rumeida neighborhood of the city, the army said.

The 19-year-old soldier had his face slashed in the attack, the Magen David Adom ambulance service said.

He received treatment on the scene from both MDA paramedics and an army medical unit, before he was taken to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem for further care, according to the ambulance service.

This was the fourth terror-related incident of the day, and the second in the Hebron area. Earlier on Friday, a Jordanian national was shot and killed as he attempted to stab a Border Police officer at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem.

Less than an hour later, a soldier shot and killed a Palestinian man and seriously wounded a Palestinian woman who allegedly carried out a car-ramming attack outside the Kiryat Arba settlement next to Hebron.

On Friday afternoon, a bus driver was also lightly wounded when unidentified perpetrators threw rocks and glass bottles full of paint at his vehicle on the highway between Jerusalem and the Ma’ale Adumim settlement.

Late Thursday night in Hebron, IDF soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian suspect, Muhammad Ahmad Abed al-Fattah al-Sarrahin, who fled as they attempted to arrest him.

“During an arrest operation in Beit Ula, security forces apprehended one suspect while another attempted to flee the building,” an Israeli army spokeswoman told AFP.

“During the pursuit a force opened fire, resulting in the suspect’s death.”

The Hebron area, where Palestinians, Israeli settlers and soldiers live in close proximity, has been a frequent scene of clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians, as well as terror attacks by Palestinian assailants.

In the past year, Israel saw a wave of so-called “lone wolf” Palestinian terror attacks, which claimed the lives of 35 Israelis and four foreign nationals since October 2015. Over 200 Palestinians have also been killed in the past year, with the Israeli army and police saying that most of those killed were attackers or involved in clashes with security forces.

However, the violence had dramatically waned in the past several months.          (the Times of Israel)

Jordanian man tries to stab cops at Damascus Gate, is shot dead

Border Police shot and killed a Jordanian man on Friday as he attempted to stab a female officer at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City, police said.

The officer was not injured in the attack.

The man arrived at the Damascus Gate from inside the Old City and approached a group of officers with a knife drawn.

The officers, who were in the area on a “safety and security mission,” saw the man coming towards them with the blade and opened fire, police said.

Upon searching the man’s body after the attempted attack, police found three knives in his possession.

The 28-year-old assailant was carrying a Jordanian passport, but police were still investigating if he also held a Palestinian ID card. His name has yet to be released.

The man entered Israel through the Allenby border crossing on Thursday afternoon.

It was not immediately clear why he was in Israel, though it is possible he was visiting for the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha, which ends on Friday.

The area has been closed off, and additional officers were brought to the scene, the spokesperson said.

This was the first attack at the Damascus Gate in nearly six months. Last year, the Old City locale was the scene of numerous stabbings and shooting attacks by Palestinians. The violence has dramatically waned in the past several months.

In July, a Jordanian man attacked an Israeli woman’s car near the Sea of Galilee, which caused her to crash into the guard rail.

After she came to a halt, the man leaped from the bushes and assaulted her, apparently trying to remove her from the vehicle, police said                  (the Times of Israel)

Driver hurt as rocks, bottles thrown at bus near Jerusalem

A bus driver was lightly injured Friday when rocks and glass bottles full of paint were thrown at his vehicle as it traveled from Jerusalem to the nearby Ma’ale Adumim settlement in the West Bank, police said.

Glass shards from a broken window hit the driver, cutting him, as he was driving down the Route 1 highway. No other injuries were reported.

Police officers began searching the area to find the perpetrators of the attack, according to a police spokesperson.

Earlier in the day on Friday, Israeli soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian man and seriously injured a woman as they carried out a suspected car-ramming attack outside the Kirya Arba settlement near Hebron, the army said.

Less than an hour beforehand, a Jordanian national was shot and killed by Border Police officers at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City as allegedly charged at them with a knife, police said.

In the past year, Israel saw a wave of so-called “lone wolf” Palestinian terror attacks, which claimed the lives of 35 Israelis and four foreign nationals since October 2015. Over 200 Palestinians have also been killed in the past year, with the Israeli army and police saying that most of those killed were attackers or involved in clashes with security forces.

However, the violence has dramatically waned in the past several months.     (the Times of Israel)

IDF soldiers shoot and kill Palestinian fleeing arrest

IDF troops on Thursday shot dead a Palestinian man as he tried to evade arrest near Hebron, the IDF said.

The Palestinian health ministry identified the dead man as Mohammed Saraheen, 30, and Palestinian security officials said Israeli troops shot him during a raid on his home in the village of Beit Ula, near Hebron.

“During an arrest operation in Beit Ula, security forces apprehended one suspect while another attempted to flee the building,” an Israeli army spokeswoman told AFP.

“During the pursuit a force opened fire, resulting in the suspect’s death.”

She could not immediately say who the suspects were or why they were wanted.

The army said it had opened an inquiry into the shooting.

The Hebron area, where Palestinians, Israeli settlers and soldiers live in close proximity, has been a frequent scene of clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians over the past year, as well as terror attacks by Palestinian assailants.                      (the Times of Israel)

Iron Dome intercepts 2 rockets over Golan Heights

An Iron Dome battery stationed on the Golan Heights intercepted two rockets fired from Syria on Saturday afternoon, marking the first time that the rocket defense system shot down threats over the Golan since the outbreak of the civil war.

The IDF believes that both rockets, intercepted in the afternoon and the evening, respectively, were stray fire resulting from nearby battles between Assad regime forces and rebels on the Syrian-held portion of the Golan.

The Golan Heights has recently seen a dramatic increase in spillover from battles in Syria, with eight mortar shells striking in the area over the last week, prompting several Israel Air Force retaliatory strikes on Assad regime artillery.

On Tuesday, tensions escalated after the Assad regime’s military fired two surface-to-air missiles at Israeli jets that were conducting a retaliatory strike. The IDF said the jets were far from the threats, and dismissed Syrian claims of a direct hit on Israeli aircraft.

Air raid sirens will sound across the country at 7:05 p.m. on Tuesday, simulating mass rocket attacks from multiple fronts, as part of a war drill being held from Sunday to Wednesday.

There are no indications that a full-scale conflict of that kind is imminent. The Home Front Command has held annual war drills for several years, and its assessments are part of the IDF’s routine preparations for future threats.           (Jerusalem Post)

Decision expected soon when to wake Peres

Doctors and family members of former president Shimon Peres will make a decision as early as this weekend about when to completely halt his medically induced coma, officials at Sheba Medical Center said on Thursday.

The process of removing Peres from his sedation continued gradually during the day. The decision about the pace of completely ending the sedation will be based on the continuous evaluations of the damage of the hemorrhagic stroke Peres suffered on Tuesday.

Peres’s doctors said that the 93-year-old’s situation has improved since the stroke.

Because Peres remained in serious but stable condition on Thursday, his office and Sheba made a decision to reduce the number of news alerts about the former president.

On Thursday morning, they said that Peres had a “quiet night,” with no change in his condition.

“He continues to receive the treatment decided upon by his doctors,” a statement released by Sheba and Peres’s office said.

“There will be additional medical consultations. With any change in treatment or in his condition, notification will be made.”

Bet before the decision to not speak to the media was made, Peres’s son-in-law and personal physician, Dr. Rafi Walden, said it was too early to tell whether there may be lasting neurological damage from the stroke, which afflicted the right side of Peres’s brain.

“All the parameters are stable – blood pressure, heart rate, blood saturation,” Walden told reporters, adding that this gives him a “certain optimism.”

“The chances of survival are pretty good,” he said. “As for the degree of neurological recovery, nobody can say at this early stage.”

Walden, who is married to Peres’s daughter Tsvia, said he does not believe there is an imminent threat to Peres’s life, but called it a difficult time for the family.

“We are very close to him,” he said. “We are very moved and touched by his condition, but also very moved by the reaction of the Israeli public.”

Pope Francis conveyed his best wishes for Peres on Thursday, saying he was praying for his full recovery. Francis held a special prayer service on Thursday for the former president alongside the pope’s longtime friend Rabbi Abraham Skorka, the rector of the Seminario Rabinico Latinoamericano in their native Buenos Aires.

US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump also send a letter to Peres on Thursday, wishing him a speedy recovery.

“Melania and I join the rest of the world in wishing you a quick recovery,” Trump wrote.

“You are one of the last generation of leaders who fought for the Jewish nation to shape its own future.”                   (Jerusalem Post)

IDF: Up to 400 Israeli Civilians Could be Killed in Future All-Out Missile and Rocket Assault on Home Front

In a future all-out multi-front war, Israel might be struck by as many as 230,000 missiles and rockets, with at least 10,000 evading Israel’s aerial defense network and hitting populated areas, IDF officials told Israeli media outlets on Thursday ahead of a nationwide emergency readiness exercise next week.

Up to 400 Israeli civilians could be killed in such a scenario, military officials predicted.

Israeli border communities in the north and south will bear the brunt of any future aerial assault on the Jewish state. The IDF estimates that 95% of projectiles fired at Israel will be short-range rockets (capable of reaching nearly 30 miles into Israel) carrying 10-kilogram explosive warheads.

Also, central Israel — including Tel Aviv — will not be out of harm’s way, particularly if the war involves Hezbollah. As reported by The Algemeiner, IDF Deputy Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Yair Golan said in June that in Israel’s next war with the Iran-backed Lebanese Shiite terrorist organization, dozens of missiles could strike the Tel Aviv metropolitan area.

During the 34-day Second Lebanon War in the summer of 2006, Hezbollah peppered northern Israel with thousands of rockets, and 44 Israeli civilians were killed. But central Israel remained untouched. However, due to upgrades in Hezbollah’s arsenal over the past decade, the IDF believes that would likely not be the case in a future conflict with the group.

Meanwhile, the Hebrew news site nrg reported on Friday that the IDF has plans to evacuate communities within 2.5 miles of the Gaza border during a future conflict with terror group Hamas. According to the report, only emergency response teams of 20-30 people would be left behind in each community.

During Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, Israeli communities adjacent to the Gaza border faced heavy barrages of mortar fire which took the lives of several civilians — including four-year-old Daniel Tragerman in Kibbutz Nahal Oz.

As part of next week’s four-day Home Front Command drill, air raid sirens will be sounded across Israel twice on Tuesday.          (the Algemeiner)

‘The Boys in Tehran Know Israel Has 200 Nukes Pointed at Them,’ Says Former Secretary of State Colin Powell in Leaked Email

Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell told a colleague last year that Israel has a slew of nuclear weapons pointed at Iran, according to emails released by hacking group DCLeaks and reported on by US foreign policy blog LobeLog on Wednesday.

In a March 2015 exchange between America’s former top diplomat and his current business partner, Jeffrey Leeds ­ about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s controversial speech to Congress to warn against the Iran nuclear deal that was being negotiated ­ Powell wrote:

Negotiators can’t get what he wants. Anyway, Iranians can’t use one [a nuclear weapon] if they finally make one. The boys in Tehran know Israel has 200, all targeted on Tehran, and we have thousands. As Akmdinijad (sic) [said], “What would we do with one, polish it?” I have spoken publicly about both nK and Iran. We’ll blow up the only thing they care about­regime survival. Where, how would they even test one?

This assertion about the existence of Israeli nukes, as LobeLog‘s Eli Clifton pointed out, is significant, because Jerusalem continues to maintain a policy of “nuclear ambiguity.”

Powell, who publicly endorsed the Iran deal a few months later, during an interview onNBC‘s “Meet the Press,” wrote a subsequent email to Leeds saying,

They [the Iranians] say, correctly, that they have every right to enrich [uranium] for energy. Russians helped build a power reactor at Busher. Can’t get enough sanctions to break them Lots of bs around about their progress. Bibi likes to say “a year away,” as do our intel guys.They say it every year. [It] ain’t that easy to do.

In another email exchange, this one in August 2015 with President Ronald Reagan’s former chief of staff Ken Duberstein, who – as Clifton explained, “suggested that Powell might refrain from endorsing the deal in a television interview where he would face questions about Hillary Clinton’s emails.” But Powell was undeterred, and harshly criticized Council on Foreign Relations President Richard Haass and Ret. General David Petraeus for remaining on the fence about the nuclear agreement:

The Iran deal is a good one for the country and our alliances. Retired generals and admirals popping off. I have studied it pretty thoroughly I have done emails before on tv. Have to deal with ISIS. Richard] Haass, Petraeus et all claiming to be undecided. BS, they are just protecting their future options. I don’t have or want any. [James] Baker, [George] Shultz know what’s right, as does Henry [Kissinger]. Brent [Scowcroft] showed some guts.

Duberstein later forwarded Powell a fundraising email sent out by former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton, which called the nuclear deal “the single largest global security crisis.”

“Haha! What is he smoking?” Duberstein wrote.

According to a report in the Washington Post, the shady site that posted Powell’s two years’ worth of emails ­ in which he mocked and hurled epithets at Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Dick Cheney and others ­ is being linked to the Russian government. The FBI, the report said, is investigating the veracity of this suspicion.

Powell is a retired four-star general in the US Army, who served as as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989-1993) during the Gulf War. He served as secretary of state under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2005.                     (The Algemeiner)

Israeli swimmer wins bronze medal in 2016 Paralympic Games

Israeli swimmer Inbal Pezaro won a bronze medal Thursday at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio, in what was another impressive showing by the Israeli team. Pezaro came in third, clocking in at 3:38.20 in the 200-meter individual medley competition.

This bronze medal will be the ninth in Pezaro’s growing collection. She previously won one bronze and one silver medal at the 2004 Athens Paralympic Games, three silver medals at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics and three bronze medals at the 2012 London games.

Inbal

Paralympic swimmer Inbal Pezaro with her bronze medal Thursday night in Rio

Paralyzed at birth from the hip down, Pezaro began taking swimming lessons at age five. She has been competing internationally since she was 12. At the age of 18, Pezaro volunteered for service in the Israel Defense Forces and became a certified swimming instructor.

Pezaro’s bronze medal is the third for Israel’s 2016 Paralympic delegation: Rower Moran Samuel won the bronze medal in the 1,000-meter race Sunday, and shooter Doron Shaziri won the bronze in 50-meter rifle three-positions competition on Monday.