Official Population Count for Judea and Samaria - Dec. 31, 2013

by Yaakov "Ketzaleh" Katz

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In a January 27, 2014 interview to the New Yorker, US President Barack Hussein Obama estimated the odds of completing a final treaty between the Israelis and the Arabs as less than fifty-fifty. 

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The explanation for Obama's despair is in the fresh statistics from the Population Registry of Israel's Ministry of the Interior. According to the data, the number of Jews living in areas liberated in the 1967 war (AKA the West Bank) is over 700,000.

Israel Empowered provides its readers with the only English breakdown of the stats available on the internet. This constitutes some 11.5% of Israel's total Jewish population.

Yaakov "Ketzaleh" Katz 

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SodaStream and the West Bank

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IDF Rewards My Son For Disobeying Orders

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My son Yonatan is not crazy about serving in the Israel Defense Forces, but he does give it his very best. 

He is now in the IDF's tank commanders' course. Yonatan says this is the hardest challenge he has undergone to date in the IDF, harder than boot camp.

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Yonatan's Merkava 4 tank

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Tu Beshvat - The Bond Between the Jewish People and Eretz Yisrael

By: Rabbi Zalman Baruch Melamed

Tu BeShvat is the "New Year" of the fruit trees. Each year, on this day, we customarily eat those fruits for which the Torah praises Eretz Yisrael. In addition, we give praise and thanks to God for the good land which He has given us and for her fruit. By so doing, we affirm that the connection between Am Yisrael and Eretz Yisrael is absolute and eternal, a Divine connection, and that nobody and nothing can separate the People of Israel from their land.

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OK, So Why Do People Immigrate?

By Moshe Maeir

Historically, immigration was caused by economic or political reasons. Wars, religious persecution, economic hardships have all been strong factors behind immigration trends over the years.

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Surprisingly, over the last decade a new factor has joined the list. Technology is not only changing the way we live, but also where we live! On the forefront of these life changing technologies is IP Telephony (also known as VoIP – voice over Internet Protocol).

 

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A Shomron Miracle in the Snow

My custom is to write about miracles only after checking them thoroughly from a direct source, i.e. a person involved. After hearing about an incident in the Jewish village of Harasha, I called the main player, Mordechai who permitted me to publicize his first name.

Mordechai and his brother Benaya live with their respective families in Harasha which is perked atop a towering mountain in the Western Shromron, AKA the West Bank. Last Shabbat, Dec. 14, 2013, Israel was in the midst of its most fierce snow storm in recorded history.

This is the story that he told:

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The Third Reason to Keep the Jordan Valley

The Third Reason to Keep the Jordan Valley

By Baruch Gordon

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At the current round of diplomatic talks, Israel is under pressure to give the Jordan Valley to the Arabs and rely on international forces to guarantee her security. The Jordan Valley constitutes Israel’s eastern border and serves as a buffer zone between the Jewish State and Jordan.

 The Bkaot road in Jordan Valley

The Bkaot Road in Jordan Valley

Why not give up the Jordan Valley for peace?

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Amazing Story About Rav Ovadiah That I Heard at His Funeral

By Baruch Gordon

 

In 1995, I attended the funeral of the great Torah sage of Israel Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach. An estimated 300,000 attended. I thought there would never be another funeral like it.

 

Tonight, I participated in the funeral of the great Sephardic Torah sage Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef. Police estimate that 600,000 people attended. Can you imagine one tenth of the population of a country attending a funeral? One tenth of Israel’s Jews made their way to Jerusalem to pay respects to one of the greatest Torah sages of the generation.

 

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Rav Ovadya Yosef

 

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