NEWS ALERT: Israel Withdraws; Hamas “Rearms”

By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Chief Middle East Correspondent reporting from Israel hamas-press-conferenceJERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife)-- Israeli forces appeared to withdraw from the Gaza Strip Tuesday, January 20, in time for the inauguration of Barack Obama as the United States' 44th president, but militant group Hamas said it would rearm, suggesting its conflict with Israel was not over.

Israel Group Campaigns Against Messianic Jews, Missionaries

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent BosNewsLife JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife)-- A hard-line Jewish ultra-Orthodox group in Israel has launched a campaign against Christian missionaries and Jewish Christians, known as Messianic Jews, who they view as a security threat.

‘30,000 Eritrean Christians Face Prison And Poverty In Israel’ (UPDATE)

By BosNewsLife Middle East Service with Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent BosNewsLife JERUSALEM/ASMARA (BosNewsLife)-- International aid workers say nearly 30,000 Eritrean Christian refugees are struggling to survive in Israel and many may soon be moved to jail due to new government policies. "Next year the limited periods in the Holot detention center may, if the Israeli government is successful in its current negotiations, be replaced with indefinite periods in a real prison," warned Barnabas Fund, a Christian relief, and advocacy group.

NEWS ALERT: Iran Suggests Destruction Israel As Jewish State

By BosNewsLife Middle East Service TEHRAN, IRAN (BosNewsLife)-- Iran's Supreme leader made clear Saturday, October 1, that his country wants to destroy Israel as a Jewish state.

Israel, Europe Remember Kristallnacht’s 70th Anniversary With Solemn Ceremonies

JERUSALEM/BERLIN (BosNewsLife)-- From Jerusalem to Berlin, people on Sunday, November 9, commemorated the 70th anniversary of 'Kristallnacht,' a night that became the prelude to the Holocaust, in which some six million Jews perished. International diplomats were among those attending a ceremony in Israel as it marked the 'Kristallnacht, the Nazi-inspired riots in which hundreds of synagogues and thousands of Jewish-owned businesses were ransacked in Germany and Austria. "They robbed everything out of the store and the synagogue was burning," recalled Holocaust survivor, Gerhard Mashkovski.At least 91 Jews were killed in the violence whipped up by Nazi stormtroopers and close to 30,000 Jews were arrested in the two-day pogrom and sent to concentration camps. Holocaust survivors and their descendants, and the German and Austrian ambassadors to Israel attended a solemn ceremony at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial here in Jerusalem on Sunday, November 9.Austrian Ambassador, Michael Rendi said it was important that Austria took over this year the presidency in the International Task Force on Holocaust Education, on Holocaust remembrance, on research. "I think it says and it shows that we have learned a very painful lesson. And the knowledge that is given on to the next generations is the key," he said.Kristallnacht, which means "Night of the Broken Glass," is seen as the beginning of the Holocaust, in which six million Jews were killed by the Nazis during World War II. On Sunday, November 9, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Israel "will never forgive or forget" the atrocities of Adolf Hitler's Germany. EUROPE REMEMBERS Events were also held in Germany itself and other European nations to remember the Kristallnacht.In Nazi Germany persecution of the Jewish population had begun long before Kirstallnacht. After Hitler had come to power, laws were passed placing restrictions on Jews, on where they could work, on who they could marry and where they could receive medical help.But on the night of November 9, 1938 the anti-semitism turned physical, Jewish people recalled. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said it was therefore crucial to "fight with determination" against racism and anti-Semitism. "Indifference is the first step toward endangering essential values," Merkel said during a speech at Germany'a largest synagogue in Berlin's Rykestrasse. "Xenophobia, racism and anti-Semitism must never be given an opportunity in Europe again."Kristallnacht, often viewed as the first major act that ultimately led to the Holocaust, was met with indifference by many Germans in 1938, Merkel noted on Sunday, November 9."There was no storm of protest against the Nazis, but silence, shrugged shoulders and people looking away -- from individual citizens to large parts of the church. We cannot be silent, we cannot be indifferent, when Jewish cemeteries are desecrated and rabbis are insulted on the street," she said at the ceremony, attended by Jewish representatives and diplomats. LINGERING PAIN German-born Pope Benedict XVI, speaking in Vatican City Sunday, November 9, voiced his lingering pain over the Kristallnacht. "Still today I feel pain over what happened in those tragic events, whose memory must serve to ensure such horrors are never repeated and that we strive, on every level, against all forms of anti-Semitism and discrimination.""I invite people to pray for the victims of that night and to join me in expressing profound solidarity with the Jewish world," the pontiff told crowds at the Vatican after his regular Sunday Angelus address.Pope Benedict, born Joseph Ratzinger in Bavaria in 1927, was forced to join the Hitler Youth as a teenager, though both his parents opposed the Nazis. Earlier this year the pontiff spoke in New York about his teenage years being "marred by a sinister regime," Reuters news agency reported.The pope is reportedly being lobbied by Holocaust survivors and their descendants to halt the process of making his wartime predecessor Pius XII a saint. Some Jews accuse Pius, who reigned from 1939 to 1958, of turning a blind eye to the Holocaust. The Vatican says he worked behind the scenes to help save many Jews from certain death. END (With reporting by BosNewsLife's Stefan J. Bos).

BREAKING NEWS: Israel Announces Ceasefire (WRAPUP)

(ADDS COMMENTS PRIME MINISTER, HAMAS, DETAILS ) By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Chief Middle East Correspondent, with BosNewsLife Chief International Correspondent Stefan J. Bos afp_israel_prime_minister_ehud_olmert_190JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife)-- Israel's Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, announced Saturday, January 17, a unilateral cease fire but said Israeli forces would remain in the Gaza Strip, as the militant group Hamas warned it would not end fighting yet, BosNewsLife monitored.

NEWS WATCH: Iran’s Supreme Leader Calls Muslims To Prepare For ‘Savior’

By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Senior Middle East Correspondent reporting from Israel iran-ayatollah-gett_129582s1JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife)-- Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has called on Muslims around the world to mobilize their troops alongside Iran against Israel and the United States to prepare for the coming of the "Mahdi" seen as "the savior of Islam".

Bomb Explodes Near Gaza, Threatening Ceasefire (Wrapup)

By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Chief Middle East Correspondent reporting from Israel ap_israel_gaza_air_strikes_175_07jan09JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife)-- A fragile ceasefire between Israel and the militant group Hamas was threatened Tuesday, January 27, when a bomb exploded on the Israeli side of the Gaza border killing an Israeli soldier and injuring three others, the Israeli army said.

URGENT BREAKING NEWS: Christians In Crossfire As Israel Strikes Kill 205 (Developing Story)

By BosNewsLife News Center with reporting from the region ap_gaza_attack_190_engBETHLEHEM/JERUSALEM (BosNewsLife)-- Minority Christians in Gaza and the West Bank faced a dark night Saturday, December 27, as Israeli air strikes against suspected Hamas militants killed hunderds of Palestinians, and Christmas lights were shut off around Bethlehem, which Christians consider Jesus' birthplace, to protest Israel's actions.

BREAKING NEWS: Hamas Founder’s Christian Son Granted Asylum in U.S.

By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Jerusalem Bureau Chief JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife) -- The son of a founder of the Palestinian Islamic group Hamas, who became a Christian and spied for Israel, will be granted political asylum in the United States as the Department of Homeland Security dropped its objections, BosNewsLife established Thursday, July 1.