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The Daily TIP: U.S. Ambassador Thanks American Firefighters for Fighting Hamas Fire-Kite Blazes in Israel

Posted by Tip Staff - August 01, 2018

U.S. Ambassador Thanks American Firefighters for Fighting Hamas Fire-Kite Blazes in Israel
Iranian-Born Writer: Regime Had My Sister Denounce Me on State Television
Israeli Minister: Russia's Assurances about Iranian Forces in Syria are Insufficient
Druze Teens Get EMT Training, Treat Elders as Part of Their National Service


U.S. Ambassador Thanks American Firefighters for Fighting Hamas Fire-Kite Blazes in Israel

The United States Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, visited a fire station in the southern city of Sderot on Wednesday to see first-hand how firefighters are battling the ongoing blazes caused by incendiary airborne devices launched from the Gaza Strip, The Times of Israel reported.

Friedman thanked the firefighters for their courage and praised the strong friendship between Israel and the U.S. During his visit, the ambassador met with 10 American firefighters, who came to Israel to help extinguish the fires which have consumed thousands of acres of land in southern Israel.

“They demonstrated an amazing solidarity between the American people and the Israeli people. It’s an act of true friendship and true love and I think the people here know that if the United States would need help, the Israelis would come to the United States to help,” Friedman said in a statement released by the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.

“I don’t think there is a better way to demonstrate solidarity, love, and cooperation between the United States and Israel,” he added.

The American firefighters volunteered through the Emergency Volunteers Project (EVP) in collaboration with the Jewish Federations of North America. They arrived Tuesday in the Jewish State to help extinguish blazes in Israeli communities along the Gaza Strip.

The firefighters from California, Florida, Maryland, Texas and Michigan have already assisted in putting out fires in more than ten locations in Israel’s south.



Iranian-Born Writer: Regime Had My Sister Denounce Me on State Television

An Iranian-born writer and activist for women's rights in her home country wrote that, forced by the regime, "my sister publicly disowned me on prime-time Iranian television," in an op-ed published Tuesday in The New York Times.

Masih Alinejad, a journalist and founder of the My Stealthy Freedom movement, which encourages Iranian women to rebel against Iran's mandatory hijab laws, wrote that over the course of twenty years, "the Islamic Republic has tried to intimidate me and my family."

Alinejad recounted that she was forced to flee her native land, after "exposing the regime’s mismanagement and corruption" and later "for writing articles critical of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad."

But the attacks on her and her family increased, after she founded My Stealthy Freedom in 2014. Though Alinejad is in the West, her family, still in Iran, "has taken the brunt." Relatives have faced financial pressure, such as having licenses to operate businesses threatened unless relatives offered damaging information about her. Others have been threatened with losing their jobs unless they offered "secrets" about her. Once, the Intelligence Ministry offered to arrange a "family reunion" with Alinejad in Turkey. "I can only imagine what they had in mind for me," she wrote.

The most recent approach taken to attack Alinejad by Iran's regime was to exploit her "family on the Iranian equivalent of '60 Minutes'.”

"It was by far the most ferocious attempt to shame me, intimidate me and break my spirit," Alinejad observed. "Stalin would have been proud."



Israeli Minister: Russia's Assurances about Iranian Forces in Syria are Insufficient

Russia’s envoy to Syria, Alexander Lavrentyev, said on Wednesday that Iranian forces in Syria had retreated 85 kilometers from the border with Israel following efforts by the Jewish State to increase pressure on the Kremlin, Reuters reported. However, an Israeli official deemed the pullback insufficient.

“The Iranians withdrew and the Shi’ite formations are not there,” TASS news agency quoted Lavrentiev as saying. “There are no units of heavy equipment and weapons that could pose a threat to Israel at a distance of 85 km from the line of demarcation,” he added.

The envoy clarified, however, that Iranian service personnel, whom he described as “advisors,” could still be embedded among Syrian regime forces who remain closer to the Israeli border.

Israeli officials see Iranian forces and their terror proxy Hezbollah as a direct threat to the Jewish State, and have demanded that Iran completely withdraws from the war-torn state.

“What we have laid down as a red line is military intervention and entrenchment by Iran in Syria, and not necessarily on our border,” Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi told Israel Radio, citing the longer-range threat posed by Iranian missiles or drones positioned in Syria.

“We are not ready to see a new Hezbollah front on our northern border between Israel and Syria. This is something that is dangerous. This is something that, if we don’t prevent it today, when still at its outset, will exact a heavy price of us down the line,” he said.



Druze Teens Get EMT Training, Treat Elders as Part of Their National Service

Druze volunteer medic Ryan Amasha, 27, regularly visits an elderly man in his village of Usfiya, in Israel’s Carmel region. He checks the 80-year-old’s vital signs once a week, takes him out for coffee, and checks in by phone several times a week.

Amasha’s connection with the elder was fostered through the countrywide Ten Kavod (Give Respect) project spearheaded by voluntary EMS organization United Hatzalah, of which he is a member.

Earlier this year, Amasha helped organize a Ten Kavod training course for 25 Druze teens doing post-high school National Service in their Carmel region communities. Israel’s Druze citizens comprise an Arabic-speaking ethnic minority in northern towns such as Usfiya and Daliyat al-Carmel.

“I believe that one of the challenges facing Israel today is a lack of connection and understanding between our youth and the golden-years generation,” said Yasmin Kara, spokeswoman for the Druze Division of the General Federation of Working and Studying Youth in Israel (NOAL), which ran the course with United Hatzalah.

“Our National Service volunteers, as well as those who defer their IDF service in order to work in the community for a year or two in Daliyat al-Carmel, wanted to take part in the emergency medical responder course and help out in the community,” said Kara.

The two-month training course was specially designed to be sensitive to the culture of the Druze people.

The young volunteers provide a basic medical check-up for their elderly partners. If they detect a physical or emotional problem, they contact the relevant doctor and family members. If there’s an immediate emergency, of course, their EMT training from United Hatzalah enables them to perform basic lifesaving treatments.

(via Israel21c)


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