This will be our last edition of the OCAP for this year. The Daily Brief will be released every other day this week, and on a reduced publishing schedule during Christmas week. Blessings!
Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
P.O. Box 5152
Herndon, VA 20172-1970
On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XIX, Number 35a
December 17 - 21, 2012
"He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds." (Psalm 147:3)
News from Israel
News from Israel
- NETANYAHU: KOTEL WILL REMAIN JEWISH FOREVER
- IDF OFFICER: GAZA BORDER THE QUIETEST IN 20 YEARS
- IDF TO BE ON HIGH ALERT FOLLOWING HEVRON INCIDENTS
- WEST BANK ON VERGE OF INTIFADA
- PASSING WMD'S TO HEZBOLLAH-A RED LINE
- HAMAS HAS SHOWN ITS TRUE COLORS-AGAIN
- EU ISSUES NEW WARNING TO ISRAEL OVER BUILDING
- US TO GIVE ISRAEL THOUSANDS OF "BUNKER-BUSTER" BOMBS
- LIEBERMAN RESIGNS AS FOREIGN MINISTER
1. NETANYAHU: KOTEL WILL REMAIN JEWISH FOREVER
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu lit the eighth and final Hannukah candle at the Kotel Saturday evening. "In recent days, I have heard that the Palestinians are saying that the Western Wall is occupied territory," Netanyahu said. "I want to tell them from the closet possible place to the miracle of the jar of oil: The Western Wall has been ours for 3,000 years, and it and the State of Israel will be ours forever."
A growing number of Israeli Jews see the Kotel as being relatively insignificant compared to the Temple Mount itself, and long for the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple that once stood there. The Kotel is a remainder of an external supporting wall of the Temple Mount. Activism calling for the return of Jewish worship to the Temple Mount has been growing stronger in recent years, but many rabbis remain opposed to this. They hold that the Mount is off bounds for Jews, according to Halakha, because of purity issues. (Israel National News) Read article.
- Abba Father, we raise up praise for the statement made by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu affirming the Kotel and Israel as being part of Your everlasting promise to the Israeli people. We continue to lift up praise for Your covenantal promises as to this land being Your land and for Your people, and for it being under Your covering grace and mercy. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- 'I will plant them in their land, and no longer shall they be pulled up from the land I have given them', says the Lord your God. (Amos 9:15)
2. IDF OFFICER: GAZA BORDER THE QUIETEST IN 20 YEARS
Israel's offensive on Gaza has deterred Hamas from new hostilities despite its claims of victory and the front is now at its quietest in 20 years, a senior Israeli military officer said. Vastly lopsided shelling exchanges over eight days killed 170 Palestinians and 6 Israelis before the November 21 truce brokered by Egypt. Hamas, which for the first time managed to fire rockets towards Tel Aviv and Jerusalem during the conflict, says it won in the absence of an Israeli ground invasion that might have toppled its Gaza administration. The officer said Hamas should be allowed to save face after failing to inflict more pain on the Jewish state.
"Their jubilation was not from victory, it was from their relief at being able to emerge from shelters," said the officer, who could not be identified by name under military regulations. "They took a major blow and they have to patch up their honor," he said.
The officer would not be drawn on how long the calm might hold but threatened heavier bombing in any future offensive. In the next round, the officer, said, "I won't fire on Shifa. But I won't be able to keep to sterile strikes like I did in this round. I intend to kill the brigade commanders and battalion commanders wherever they are." (YnetNews) Read more.
- O Heavenly Father, thank You for this respite from heavy confrontations out of Gaza. May Hamas heed the Israeli warning for when these confrontations start again. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- "The Lord is righteous; He has cut in pieces the cords of the wicked. Let all those who hate Zion be put to shame and turned back." (Psalm 129:4-5)
3. IDF TO BE ON HIGH ALERT FOLLOWING HEVRON INCIDENTS
The IDF and the police will be on high alert Friday, following a series of attempted terror attacks and riots in the Hevron area. According to a report on Channel 2 News, there will be an increased presence of soldiers and officers around Judea and Samaria, and especially in Hevron, at the end of Friday prayers in the mosques.
The latest incident occurred late on Thursday night when members of an IDF unit stationed near Hevron shot an Arab terrorist as he prepared to throw a firebomb at them. Arab reports claimed that the terrorist was seriously wounded and taken to hospital in the city. Earlier on Thursday, terrorists threw a firebomb at an IDF position in the city. There were no injuries or damages.
Also on Thursday, three firebombs were thrown at an Israeli car travelling near Al-Khader, west of Bethlehem. There were no injuries or damages. The Arab rioting occurred several hours after a female officer shot and killed a 17-year-old PA Arab terrorist who pulled a gun on Border Police officers near Hevron. A police sapper who arrived subsequently to check out the gun determined that it was a fake gun. In an interview Thursday morning, the Border Police officer who killed the terrorist said that she shot the terrorist because she feared a fellow officer would be killed by him. The officer, N, said that the terrorist had aimed his gun at the head of a fellow officer, and that when he failed to respond to orders to drop his weapon, she opened fire. (Israel National News) Read article.
- Abba Father, we ask for You to pour mercy and comfort over those involved in these incidents, from the false gun threat to the actual fire bombs. May You encircle these IDF and police staff members with a hedge of protection and fill them with keen discernment as to how to respond. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- "As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds His people from this time forth and forever." (Psalm 125:2)
4. WEST BANK ON VERGE OF INTIFADA
Is a third intifada unavoidable? The recent Palestinian success in the UN, the deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian peace process, and the achievements noted by Hamas during Operation Pillar of Defense have prompted greater agitation in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria], and the Israel Defense Force [IDF] is concerned that the area may soon reach a boiling point. According to Shin Bet [Israeli internal security] data, the unrest in the area is ripe for the development of the kind of infrastructure that could potentially support a third intifada-prolonged and violent unrest the likes of which Israel had to deal with in 1987 and 2000. In recent weeks, the number of arrests made by the Palestinian Authority's [PA] security forces against Hamas operatives in the West Bank has plummeted, and the PA no longer seems motivated to curb their activities in the area.
Almost simultaneously, military intelligence has seen a spike in alerts suggesting terror groups are planning attacks against Israeli soldiers and civilians alike. According to the data, 130 attacks or attempted attacks were launched from the West Bank in November alone, the majority of which were classified by the defense establishment as "difficult to contain." Still, an IDF military source in the Judea and Samaria Division told Ynet that, "We're able to reach everyone eventually, even those who hurl Molotov cocktails or throw rocks at cars."
According to a top military source, "There are two scenarios that may indicate the future: The reopening of Hamas' da'wah institutions [religious instruction] in the West Bank and the complete suspension of Hamas' operatives' arrests." (By Yoav Zitun, Ynetnews, December 9, 2012) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace] Read more.
- Pray to God that the disturbances in Judea and Samaria subside. Pray that peace will be in the hearts of those that live there.
- "Now acquaint yourself with Him, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you." (Job 22:21)
5. PASSING WMD'S TO HEZBOLLAH-A RED LINE
Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren told Fox News that should any chemical weapons reach Hezbollah, Israel would considered it a "red line" and a "game-changer" in the region. Israel and the West are following the situation in Syria closely, as Syrian President Bashar Assad's hold on the war-torn country frays. "We're watching the situation very carefully. We have been watching it many months now and it's not new to us," Oren told Fox' Christopher Wallace, on Fox News Sunday [December 9]. "Syria has a varied, deep chemical weapons program. It's geographically dispersed as well and were those weapons to pass into the wrong hands, into Hezbollah's hands, for example, that would be a game changer for us."
US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both said that any deployment or use of Damascus' chemical weapons would constitute a red line for Washington. Obama delivered a stern warning to the Syrian regime, saying that "If you make the tragic mistake of using these weapons, there will be consequences, and you will be held accountable." Clinton reiterated the warning.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also warned the Syrian president against committing an "outrageous crime" warning it would have "huge consequences." NATO joined in on the forewarning, saying that "Any use of chemical weapons by Syria's government would prompt an immediate international response." "We have long advocated for Bashar Assad's departure, long before, actually the outbreak of hostilities. We came to the administration, years ago and said Bashar Assad is too reckless. His father was, remember Hafez? He was reckless, but somehow predictable - reckless but somehow responsible. His son is reckless and irresponsible and ruthless." (Ynet News) Read more. [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Pray that God keeps weapons of mass destruction out of the hands of Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations. Pray for the protection of Israel from any weapons that are formed against it.
- "Stay with me; do not fear. For he who seeks my life seeks your life, but with me you shall be safe." (1 Samuel 22:23)
6. HAMAS HAS SHOWN ITS TRUE COLORS-AGAIN
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented Sunday [December 9] on the speech given by Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Mashaal in Gaza Saturday, saying that, "Over the last 24 hours we have been exposed, again, to Hamas' true colors." Mashaal spoke at Hamas' 25th anniversary celebrations in Gaza City, and declared that the Islamist movement would never recognize Israel and will "fight to free Palestine from the Zionist occupier."
Hamas, Netanyahu told the Cabinet, "has no intention of ever reaching a compromise with us. They want to destroy Israel. The State of Israel will overcome this enemy, but it was interesting to see how Abu Mazen (Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas) didn't condemn the statements calling for Israel's destruction-just like he never condemns rocket fire.
"Unfortunately he is striving for unity with Hamas, which as we know is backed by Iran. The Israeli government," he added, "has no illusions. We want true peace with our neighbors but we are not oblivious to reality. We won't make another mistake like a unilateral withdrawal-the kind that has landed Hamas in power in Gaza.
"I'm always been astounded by other people's illusions that say that they are willing to continue this process and call it 'peace.' Giving these people any control of Judea and Samaria will have only one result-Gaza on the outskirts of Tel Aviv, Hadera, and Kfar Saba. This is why we have to stand up to international pressure, and that's what the Israeli leadership should be-devoid of illusions and protective of Israel's interests." (By Boaz Fyler, Ynetnews, December 9, 2012) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace] Read article.
- Pray that the threats from Hamas to destroy Israel are just words without action. Pray for their hearts to be turned from their hatred of Israel.
- "This they shall have for their pride, because they have reproached and made arrogant threats against the people of the LORD of hosts." (Zephaniah 2:10)
7. EU ISSUES NEW WARNING TO ISRAEL OVER BUILDING
Israel construction that had been halted in 2010 Credit: Isranel. The foreign ministers of European Union [EU] countries issued a new warning to Israel not to proceed with plans to build new housing on land it acquired in the 1967 war: land the Palestinians claim for a future state. International condemnation of Israel has been fast and furious since the government green-lighted the planning phase for 3,000 new housing units in retaliation for the Palestinian UN gambit-obtaining elevated status at the United Nations in what Israel and the United States see as a breach of agreements to avoid unilateral moves in the peace process.
The European ministers addressed the UN issue by warning the Palestinian Authority not to take advantage of its new "non-member" status by further undermin[ing] confidence between the two sides" and condemned last week's vow by Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal to "free the land of Palestine inch by inch." Meshaal's definition of Palestine included all of the state of Israel. To Israel, the message was that "The EU will closely monitor the situation and its broader implications and act accordingly," without saying what those actions might be.
The greatest source of concern regarding the Israeli announcement relates to the area known as "E-1"-a corridor between Jerusalem and its suburb of Maaleh Adumim-in which the Palestinians, and now the EU, contend Israeli building will deny the territorial contiguity necessary for the viability of a future Palestinian state. On Monday [December 10], Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told foreign journalists that the claim that Israeli building will interfere with Palestinian statehood is "simply not true." (By The Media Line, December 12, 2012) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Pray that Israel will move forward in the direction God wants them to go. Pray for their protection as they walk in His path.
- "And keep the charge of the LORD your God: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn . . ." (1 Kings 2:3)
8. US TO GIVE ISRAEL THOUSANDS OF "BUNKER-BUSTER" BOMBS
According to a Bloomberg report, in wake of Operation Pillar of Defense, the Pentagon wants to arm the Israel Defense Forces [IDF] with a tail kit system used to convert free-fall bombs into satellite-guided ordnance, as well as with missiles that can be mounted on F-15 and F-16 fighter jets and are capable of penetrating underground or fortified targets.
The military aid includes 1,725 JDAM tail kits together with BLU-109 bombs, also dubbed "bunker-buster" and weighing in at more than 900kg [1,984 pounds]. According to the Bloomsberg report, the bombs are intended to "defeat an enemy's most critical and hardened targets such as protected weapons storage sites, and penetrate as much as six feet of reinforced concrete."
According to Jeff White, a military analyst with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the aid package is partly motivated by Washington's desire to assist Israel in replenishing its munitions stockpile which was diluted following November's campaign against Gaza Strip's terror groups. During the campaign, Israel dropped numerous bombs on Gaza in an attempt to halt rocket and missile fire. The IDF also targeted smuggling tunnels, rocket firing pits, weapons mills and munitions warehouses. (By Ynetnews, December 12, 2012) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace] Read article.
- Thank God for the support of other nations in the defense of Israel. Pray that the State of Israel relies first on God before it relies on its own strength or the strength of others.
- "The God of my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge; my Savior, You save me from violence." (2 Samuel 22:3)
9. LIEBERMAN RESIGNS AS FOREIGN MINISTER
Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman announced Friday that he has decided to resign from office following the breach of trust indictment pending against him. Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein announced the decision to file charges against Lieberman on Thursday, in a case involving the promotion of former Israeli ambassador to Belarus Ze'ev Ben Aryeh.
In a statement released Friday, Lieberman said: "Today, I held meetings with my attorneys and members of the election campaign. Considering the nature of the indictment and the circumstances of the case - and despite the fact that according to legal opinion I am not obligated to do so - I have decided to resign from office." "I know that I have done nothing wrong, but out of desire to put this matter behind me. I have decided to step down as foreign minister and deputy prime minister and, as I said yesterday, have my parliamentary immunity removed immediately. "After 16 years of having various investigations held against me, I wish to end this matter without delay and clear my name completely," Lieberman said. "I believe that the Israeli public deserves to go the ballots after this matter has been settled, meaning with a ruling given before the elections, so I can continue serving the State of Israel and its public as part of a strong, united leadership."
Senior political sources told Ynet that following Lieberman's resignation, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to keep the foreign relations portfolio in his office, and will be the acting foreign minister until after January's elections. Should Netanyahu decide to name a replacement for Lieberman, his shortlist will include Vice Premier Silvan Shalom and Education Minister Gideon Saar.
Netanyahu reportedly announced that he intends to "keep the portfolio in trust" until after next month's elections, with aim of reinstating Lieberman, "If the law so allows." In the event that Lieberman is cleared of all charges and is reelected, his position as the No. 2 man on the Likud-Beiteinu list will enable him to choose one of the top three offices - the Foreign Ministry, the Treasury or the Defense Ministry. (Ynet News) Read article.
- Lord Jesus, we ask that all aspects of this indictment and the full truth of what really occurred be exposed for all to see. We ask for a speedy and fair trial, with justice being enacted. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- "For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men." (I Peter 2:15)
News from Syria
News from Syria
- ISLAMISTS GAINING GROUND IN SYRIA
- REPORT: ASSAD FIRING SCUDS AT REBEL FORCES
- RUSSIA CRITICIZES U.S. FOR RECOGNIZING SYRIAN OPPOSITION
- AMERICAN TROOPS TO HELP PROTECT TURKEY FROM SYRIA
1. ISLAMISTS GAINING GROUND IN SYRIA
The small group of Free Syrian Army opposition fighters marched under a hazy sky outside Aleppo, raising their guns in the air, days after the government's Sheik Suleiman base fell into rebel hands. 'We are coming for you,' they chanted in a video posted to the Internet, an apparent warning to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. 'God damn your soul, We are coming for you.'
But the week's major victory at the military base was not led by the Free Syrian Army. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says it was led by Islamist fighters with the al-Nusrah front, giving them access to tanks, missiles and other heavy weaponry. 'We see a shift toward Islamization of the ideology of the people who are fighting on the ground, which is a concern,' says Mattaz Suheil with the Britain-based Observatory. 'They're more cohesive as a group and that's a problem because it's radicalizing young people who want to be part of a military campaign against the regime, against a minority in Syria and they eventually adopt the more radical view.'
Suheil says the influence of groups like al-Nusrah is having an impact that goes beyond the battlefield. 'We see in Aleppo city now they've installed an Islamic court and a police of vice and virtue which means people, civilians, are being tried for moral crimes.' (Voice of America News) Read more.
- Al-Qaeda and the Moslem Brotherhood are infiltrating the freedom fighters. Is the dominant sect Sunni or Shi'a? Pray for the ordinary citizens of Syria, for Syria is a birth place of Christianity outside Israel, remembering the Apostle Paul. Do not let Syria fall into the hands of radical Islamists. Use prayer to bring down this stronghold that is trying to establish itself in Syria
Over the years, Assad has lied and deceived the world; now the viper has come back to bite Assad and his ministers on the heel. Ask the Lord to show the Syrian Christians how to exercise prayer strategies. Pray for Syria!
- "Therefore I poured My fury on them, for the blood they had shed on the land and for the idols with which they had defiled it." (Ezekiel 36: 18)..
2. REPORT: ASSAD FIRING SCUDS AT REBEL FORCES
SCUD-2 of the Afghan National Army US intelligence believes that Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar Assad have fired Scud missiles at rebel fighters, the New York Times [NYT] reported Wednesday [December 12]. Earlier Wednesday, Human Rights Watch said that Syrian forces have dropped incendiary bombs on populated areas outside Damascus.
The report, citing top White House officials, pegged the use of the short-range, surface-to-surface missiles as an escalation in the fighting, which has already killed more than 40,000 civilians and displaced over 500,000 since it erupted in March 2011. One top official told the NYT that Assad used Scuds to strike rebel bases in northern Syria on at least six occasions. It is unknown at this time how many casualties were claimed by the Scud attacks.
US intelligence agencies have been following the developments in Syria closely, as concerns that the desperate president may choose to use nonconventional weapons on his own people, grow. Syria has the world's largest arsenal of chemical weapons.
"The Obama administration views the Assad use of Scud missiles as a significant escalation of the conflict," the paper quoted a senior DC official as saying. "It also shows the increasing desperation of Mr. Assad, since Scuds are primarily defensive weapons, being used by the government offensively against a counterinsurgency. Using Scuds to target tanks or military bases is one thing. Using them to target rebels hiding in playgrounds at schools is something else," the official said.
This development comes as representatives of more than 100 countries and organizations supporting the Anti-Assad movement met in Morocco Tuesday and endorsed a newly formed opposition coalition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people. President Obama formally acknowledged that coalition, known as the National Coalition of Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, in an interview on Tuesday with ABC. (By Ynetnews, December 12, 2012) Read more.
- Pray that God will protect the innocent in Syria. Pray that God will confuse any evil thoughts or actions on both sides of the civil war.
- "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11) [Reported by: Bridges for Peace]
3. RUSSIA CRITICIZES U.S. FOR RECOGNIZING SYRIAN OPPOSITION
Russia says it is surprised the United States has recognized a newly formed Syrian opposition coalition as the representative of the Syrian people. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday the move goes against efforts to establish a political transition in Syria.
"As the coalition has been recognized as the only legitimate representative, it seems that the United States decided to place all bets on the armed victory of this very national coalition," said Lavrov.
President Barack Obama announced the widely expected move in a television interview Tuesday. It is aimed at strengthening the hand of rebels seeking to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government. But it stops short of any U.S. commitment to arm the opposition, which the administration says includes terrorist participation. (Voice of America News) Read more.
- Since Russia is funding Syria, there is little wonder that Russia disapproves of President Obama's statement. Does Russia know that among the rebels are al-Qaeda workers as well as the Moslem Brotherhood? Both sides are wicked! Bashar Assad is fighting for his life and power, and he is wicked too. Pray for the honest people of Syria, especially the Syrian Christians.
- "Thus says the God,' Remove violence and plundering , execute justice, and stop dispossessing My people,' says the Lord God." ( Ezekiel 45: 9).
4. AMERICAN TROOPS TO HELP PROTECT TURKEY FROM SYRIA
The United States will send Patriot air defense missiles and 400 troops to Turkey to defend it from Syria, AP reported Friday. Pentagon press secretary George Little said Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has signed a deployment order.
Turkey requested assistance from NATO following multiple incidents in which violence in Syria spilled over the border. In October, Turkish officials reported having found Russian military supplies on board a plane heading for Syria.
Earlier in the year the Syrian army shot down a Turkish plane.
The Patriot missiles are capable of shooting down both missiles and aircraft. Panetta said the decision to move the missiles to Turkey would 'help Turkey have the kind of missile defense it may very well need to deal with the threats coming out of Syria.' (Israel National News) Read more.
- Is sending Patriot missiles to Turkey a wise idea? Some pluses and minuses appear. Will the missiles be used against Israel? Is Turkey in trouble, needing our help? Why do they need American troops and anti-rocket missiles? Turkey is a strong Moslem country. Pray for wisdom for Mr. Panetts, who should know the details about most of Turkey's internal plans.
- "So that you incline your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding." (Proverbs 2: 2)
More International News
More International News
- EGYPTIANS HAND ISLAMISTS NARROW WIN IN CONSTITUTION VOTE
- NORTH KOREA VOWS MORE SATELLITE LAUNCHES
- CHINA APPEALS FOR CALM AFTER NORTH KOREAN ROCKET LAUNCH
- HAMAS TV: DEATH TO THE JEWS AND TO AMERICA
- IRAN: PROUD OF OUR SUPPORT FOR HAMAS AND ISLAMIC JIHAD
- JORDAN'S KING ABDULLAH EYES PALESTINIANS
1. EGYPTIANS HAND ISLAMISTS NARROW WIN IN CONSTITUTION VOTE
Egyptians voted in favor of a constitution shaped by Islamists but opposed by other groups who fear it will divide the Arab world's biggest nation, officials in rival camps said on Sunday after the first round of a two-stage referendum.
Next week's second round is likely to give another "yes" vote as it includes districts seen as more sympathetic towards Islamists, analysts say, meaning the constitution would be approved. But the narrow win so far gives Islamist President Mohamed Mursi only limited grounds for celebration by showing the wide rifts in a country where he needs to build a consensus for tough economic reforms.
The Muslim Brotherhood's party, which propelled Mursi to office in a June election, said 56.5 percent backed the text. Official results are not expected until after the next round. (Reuters) Read more.
- Please pray that the Lord exposes the Moslem Brotherhood in its takeover under Morsi. Now Morsi wants to gain control of the Egyptian constitution. Where the Moslem Brotherhood is is deception with no interest in the people at all; the name of the game is power. The Egyptian people have always disliked the MB, and under Mubarak the MB was repressed. Pray for the freedom of the Egyptian people.
- "I will set Egyptians against Egyptians , and every one against this brother, city against city, kingdom against kingdom." (Isaiah 19: 2).
2. NORTH KOREA VOWS MORE SATELLITE LAUNCHES
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is vowing to send more satellites to space, just days after the country's successful long-range rocket launch provoked international condemnation. The official Korean Central News Agency said that Kim 'stressed the need' to continue the satellite launches 'to develop the country's science, technology, and economy.'
The United Nations Security Council condemned Wednesday's launch as a 'clear violation' of sanctions barring Pyongyang from carrying out missile or nuclear tests.
But it was welcomed in North Korea, where hundreds of thousands of civilians and soldiers gathered Friday to celebrate the success of the mission. Standing in tightly organized ranks in Pyongyang's Kim Il Sung Square, the massive crowd cheered as top officials, including Vice Chief of the General Staff of the Army Ro Gwang Chol, praised Kim's 'bravery and wisdom.' At the news of the successful entry into orbit, our soldiers have been full of delight and strong emotions, shouting 'hurrahs' at the top of their voices, in the sky, at sea, as well as at all guard posts on the ground,' said one North Korean in attendance. (Vooice of America) Read more.
- Father, for nations such as North Korea to violate sanctions barring them from carrying out missile or nuclear tests is rank and fearless lawlessness. We are calling out to You, Lord, who is the Creator of all the heavens and the earth to short-switch this satellite and cause its internal functions to fail. Let it not transmit dangerous intelligence that would give North Korea an edge enabling them to carry out missile or nuclear testing. We render this satellite useless, in the Name of Jesus. Amen.
- "You, O Lord, are the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Yours; Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and You are exalted as head above all." (I Chronicles 29:11)
3. CHINA APPEALS FOR CALM AFTER NORTH KOREAN ROCKET LAUNCH
North Korea launched its rocket Wednesday morning, surprising many countries throughout Asia, including its main ally China. While the move was strongly condemned by Japan and South Korea, China's reaction was more muted. China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said China expresses regret at North Korea's decision to launch the rocket despite extensive concerns in the international community. China says countries should remain calm and that while North Korea has a right to make peaceful use of outer space that right is subject to restriction by the United Nations. The spokesman said the U.N. Security Council's actions should be moderate to avoid escalation of the situation.
North Korea has said its rocket launch was aimed at placing a weather satellite into orbit. But experts believe it was an attempt by Pyongyang to master long range missile technology. Analysts say the move also may be an attempt by North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, who came to power almost a year ago, to shore up domestic support in the impoverished country. (Voice of America News) Read more.
- Kim Jong Un must be smiling from ear to ear at the launching of a missile from his country. Pray for the people of North Korea so that they will be set free from the activity imposed on them by this dictator Pray that the many Christians in China will go into their prayer closets to intercede on behalf of the North Koreans who so desperately need their help. Pray!
- "He who is often reproved and hardens his neck will suddenly ve destroyed, and that without remedy." (Proverbs 29: 1) ..
4. HAMAS TV: DEATH TO THE JEWS AND TO AMERICA
The new Hamas-Fatah unity further exposes the Palestinian Authority's failure to live up to pledges to stop incitement. Abbas' unity with Hamas now unmasks his image of a 'peace partner' by binding him as a partner in Hamas' stated goal of killing Jews and destroying Israel. Hamas TV broadcast 10 days ago a speech by a Muslim cleric who preached, 'Our mantle is death to the Jews and to America.' 'The prophet said 'judgment day will not come until you fight the Jews,' the cleric said. 'Oh, Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. They won't say, 'Oh, westernized Muslim.' They won't say, 'Oh Muslim who does not know his religion. They will say, 'Oh, Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me. Come and kill him.''
The video was translated and published by Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
Unlike Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, Gaza's Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh openly refuses to be bound by commitments to stop terror, to recognize Israel and to live up to agreements signed by the Palestinian Authority. The international community has turned a blind eye to PA violations of incitement, establishing a military under the name of a 'police force' and manning it far beyond the limits allowed in the Oslo Accords. Abbas also won international approval for violating the Oslo Accords, which calls for direct talks with Israel over PA demands to become an independent entity, by pegging his unilateral move to the UN for de facto recognition as a step towards 'negotiations' with Israel. (Israel National News) Read more.
- Praise the Lord that He has revealed the true intent of Fatah, as it has allied itself with Hamas, a genuine terrorist organization. Now we see what is behind the appeal to the UN: to bring the Moslem Brotherhood, Fatah, and Hamas to power over the nations.
Too many people are ignorant of what the Scriptures state about Israel. Pray against any secret plotting against Israel and America. Cut asunder the three strand cord binding together these three terrorist organizations. (Psalm 129:4 NAS)
- "Then they [Israelis] they shall know that I am the Lore who sent them into captivity among the nations, but brought them back to their own land , and left none of them captive any longer." (Ezekiel 39: 28)
5. IRAN: PROUD OF OUR SUPPORT FOR HAMAS AND ISLAMIC JIHAD
Iran is continuing to boast close relations with the terrorist organizations operating in Gaza. A spokesman for Iran's Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that the relations between Iran and both Hamas and the Islamic Jihad are better than they have ever been.
Speaking at a press conference and quoted by the Iranian Mehr news agency, the spokesman also claimed that the Western media is trying to drive a wedge between Iran and Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in the wake of what he claimed was the 'defeat' Israel suffered in the recent conflict in Gaza. He said that support for the struggle of the Arab people is a matter of principle for Iran. (Israel National News) Read more.
- God in heaven, let the Blood of Jesus flow over the unity between Iran, Hamas and Islamic Jihad and split them apart and put a divine wedge between them that they will never move together again. Cast out the evil spirits that are warring against Israel and break their power and render them powerless. Put forth Your hand and grind their plans and plots to pieces. Reign victorious in all of this, O God. In Jesus' Name.
- "O God, when You went forth before Your people, when You did march through the wilderness; the earth shook, the heavens also dropped at the presence of God, even Sinai itself was moved at the presence of God, the God of Israel." (Psalm 68:7-8)
6. JORDAN'S KING ABDULLAH EYES PALESTINIANS
King Abdullah of Jordan visited Ramallah last weekend immediately after the United Nations accepted Palestine as a non-member observer state. The king's message was clear: Palestine will be created in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] while the East Bank [of the Jordan River] will remain Jordanian.
Jordan's policy regarding the Palestinian problem has been centered on the rejection of the notion of an "alternative state" for the Palestinians in the East Bank. The kingdom's apprehension is easily understood. With the East Bank populated by a Palestinian majority, it is unclear what will become of Jordan's Palestinians once Palestine becomes a state.
Will the Palestinians become full Jordanian citizens or will they be stripped of their citizenship and become Palestinian citizens? The dilemma harkens back to the agreement between the late King Hussein and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to establish a federation/confederation between Jordan and Palestine. Jordan has always demanded that the issue of a federation/confederation be addressed after the Palestinians get their state.
The king's visit likewise dealt with concerns over inter-Arab crises in the wake of the Arab Spring. Following visits by senior Muslim Brotherhood officials, the emir of Qatar, and potentially, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan, to Gaza, the King's visit sent a message that the shrinking anti-Muslim Brotherhood camp was not about to give in.
However, according to Jordanian sources, there is no real crisis between the elder Bedouin leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Palace in Amman. Unlike Egypt, where the Mubarak regime persecuted the Muslim Brotherhood, the Hashemites allotted members of the Brotherhood positions in the administration and allowed them to run an independent political party-the only one in Jordan.
There is, however, a problem with the younger generation of the Brotherhood led by Palestinian Said Hamam who has identified himself with Hamas and its resistance credo. Sources in Jordan reveal that the Palace is worried by the supposed preference of the American embassy in Amman to meet with the more radical, younger Palestinian leadership instead of the old Bedouin guard that is relatively loyal to the crown. (World Jewish Congress) Read more.
- Pray for peace and communication between the Arabs in Judea and Samaria and the people of Jordan. Pray for peace between the Arabs and the people of Israel.
- "Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth." (Jeremiah 33:6 )
[Reported by: Bridges for Peace]
Breaking News from Israel
MUSLIMS RIOT, JEWS BANNED FROM TEMPLE MOUNT
Jews have been barred from the Temple Mount in Jerusalem until Sunday, the last day of Hannukah. The Temple Mount is the holiest site on earth according to Jewish tradition. The ban is aimed at preventing a Muslim riot at the site. Riots are thought to be particularly likely following Friday prayers. It follows riots and terror attacks in Judea and Samaria. Tensions were particularly high following two incidents in which soldiers shot Arab attackers in Hevron. Jewish organizations dedicated to Temple Mount activism expressed upset at the police ban. 'The police treat the Temple Mount like a Muslim site, and open it to others only when necessary for tourism, at times and on days that suit tourists,' activists accused. 'In comparison,' they continued, 'Jewish residents of Israel are discriminated against.
They called to leave the Temple Mount open to Jews on every Jewish holiday. 'The police must consider the many who wish to ascend the Mount for prayers and visits on Jewish holidays, and to institute the model used in the Tomb of the Patriarchs,' they urged. The Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hevron is normally split between Jews and Muslims, but is opened in its entirety to each religion on its holidays." (Israel National News) Read more.
- Heavenly Father, You know that Your people desire during special feast days and holiday seasons to be able to ascend the Temple Mount for prayer and worship to You on each day of the feasts or holiday celebration. We also know in Judea and Samaria there have been increasing riots and hostilities from Arabic agitators since the vote in the UN. These threats and actions have been given as the reason for banning those who very much want to pray on the Temple Mount.
This ban was in place until today, Sunday, the last day of Hannukah. We are asking that You rise up and extend Your arm against any Muslims who would riot or block the Israeli worshippers access, so it is not enforced at any point in time as we know You alone are Lord of the Universe and nothing is too difficult for You. We thank you in advance for hearing and answering this prayer, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- Help me, O Lord my God! Oh, save me according to Your mercy that they may know that this is Your hand - That You, Lord, have done it!' (Psalm 109:26-27)
- I will lift up my eyes to the hills - from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. (Psalm 121:1-2)
Two Key Updates: Newtown Tragedy
Please note that the NATIONWIDE CONFERENCE CALL being sponsored by INTERCESSORS FOR AMERICA will take place today (Monday, Dec. 17) at 12:00 p.m. noon EST.
Their phone number is:
TIME: 12:00 p.m. EST
MESSAGE FROM IFA:
Dear Praying Friends,
Please join me Monday in prayer as we seek the Lord's healing for our nation after the tragic events that occurred on Friday in Newtown, CT.
Intercessors for America
TALKING TO OUR KIDS ABOUT THE TRAGEDY IN CONNECTICUT
With the recent shooting in Connecticut, where do we even start to explain what happened to our innocent children? How can we shield them from the evil this incident exposed?
In this excellent article, Julie Hiramine offers valuable insights on how to talk to your kids age appropriately about the Connecticut shooting tragedy.
Julie Hiramine is the author of Guardians of Purity and the founder of the ministry Generations of Virtue. To read her article, go here.
Introduction to Today's Edition
On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XIX, Number 35b
Introduction to Today's Edition
This evening, our nation is still recovering from the impact of Friday's shootings in Newtown, Connecticut. Life is not yet "normal" today in America.
For this domestic edition of our weekly "OCAP," we too are going to pause as we continue to reset our compass . . . back to the heart of the Lord. News from the Hill for prayer will be posted this week on our Daily Briefs.
In this issue, please find included three articles:
1. Today's message from Cindy Jacobs . . . we say "amen" to her words. (Thank you, Cindy!)
2. Our own ten-step guide to repentance, linked to a PDF file
3. (Repeating) A resource tool for parents and grandparents: "Talking to Our Kids About the Tragedy in Connecticut" by Julie Hiramine. (Thank you, Julie!)
In closing, please find someone to give a hug to today. We all need one now.
Sara C. Ballenger
Founder and President
Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
A Message from Cindy Jacobs
A Message from Cindy Jacobs
Praying for the United States
"Unrest In Our Nation"
There is an unrest in the nation on many levels with shooters on both coasts and what one might consider unlikely places.
Many are mulling in private as to the reasons-this might be happening spiritually. It seems as if a spirit of lawlessness and violence has been released into our nation.
It is my feeling that this is a time to comfort those who mourn and put away the pointing of the finger. People are suffering-horribly!
Let's pray Psalm 91 each day over our families and country. Pray that any planned violence be uncovered.
Many of you know that Governor Mike Huckabee had already called for a day of prayer on January 20, 2013. I encourage you and your church to join him on calling upon the Lord for national protection against terrorism both foreign and domestic.
Let's stand as one and agree God will both protect our land and bring a great awakening that will sweep America from sea to shining sea.
God bless you all and may the angels of the Lord surround you and yours today.
A Ten-Step Guide to Repentance
A Ten-Step Guide to Repentance:
"Preparing Your Heart to Enter In"
Repentance is a difficult topic . . . one that causes us to wriggle and squirm and suddenly find something else to do.
But REPENTANCE is the call of the hour: It is time to clean house, seek the Lord, and then to reach out to others . . . with "clean hands and pure hearts."
Please find attached a ten-step, indepth means of looking inward, in repentance; and then looking outward, to repair relationships that may have been damaged over time.
Let's get moving together on this very necessary work, as we prepare to enter into a very turbulent New Year ahead.
The TEN STEPS are:
1. Consider your Ways
2. Change your Direction
3. Connect with Christ
4. Consent to Surrender
5. Cease from Struggling
6. Concentrate on Acceptance
7. Cleanse your Past
8. Bring Christ into Your Relationships
9. Cultivate the Quiet Time
10. Create Outlets and Activities
Go to this site, provided for us by Intercessors for America, to access this profound
and wonderful study.
May you each be blessed, strengthened, encouraged, and refreshed by this guide as we all prepare to enter into 2013, together.
"And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ." (Eph. 3:17,18)
(Source: E. Stanley Jones, The Way, published in 1956 by Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, New York)
Talking to Your Children (and Grandchildren)
Talking to Your Children (and Grandchildren)
This article/blog post from Julie Hiramine addresses how to talk to your kids age appropriately about the CT shooting tragedy. Feel free to use it and pass it on however you feel lead.
Julie Hiramine is the Founder and Executive Director of the ministry Generations of Virtue (www.generationsofvirtue.org) that equips parents to empower their children for purity in our world today. As an internationally noted speaker, author and Christian leader, Julie has encouraged and impacted parents and teens both in the US and internationally through her speaking and written materials.
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Timothy 1:17)
How thankful I am to know You, King Eternal. Even though You are invisible, You are nearer to me than my own breath. May I live this day in total thankfulness. May I live this day with a sense of Your closeness. I love you, dear Lord.
"And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call." (Joel 2:32)
(Taken from: Intimate Moments with the Hebrew Names of God, by Barri Cae Malin and Shmuel Wolkenfeld; Bridge-Logos Publishers; Gainesville, FL, 32614. ISBN: 0-88270-801-5)