UK Ducks Jerusalem Embassy Move
UK BACKS AWAY FROM POSSIBLE JERUSALEM EMBASSY MOVE FLOATED BY EX-PM TRUSS: The British government said Thursday, November 3, that it would not relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, backing away after a pledge made by former prime minister Liz Truss to weigh the matter, shortly before she left office last month.
“There are no plans to move the British embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv,” a spokeswoman for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told reporters. A similar comment was reported a day earlier by an Arab outlet, drawing a response by Palestinian envoy to Britain Husam Zomlot thanking “the UK government, opposition parties, faith leaders, activists and members of the public whose efforts have helped keep the UK in line with international law on the matter.” “The question about the location of the UK’s embassy should never have been asked in the first place,” he asserted. Truss had personally told Israel’s Prime Minister Yair Lapid on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in September that she was looking at transferring the embassy to Tel Aviv. Her plans drew broad criticism with ambassadors to London from every Arab country reportedly penning a letter urging her not to go ahead with the idea. (TOI / VFI News)
RUSSIA GAVE STOLEN WESTERN WEAPONS, CASH TO IRAN: Russia flew over $140 million in cash and seized Western anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles to Tehran in late August, an anonymous security source told British media on Tuesday, November 8.
The seized munitions include a British NLAW anti-tank missile, a US Javelin anti-tank missile and a Stinger anti-aircraft missile, according to the report. The munitions had been part of a shipment intended for the Ukrainian military that “fell into Russian hands.” The security source warned that the seized munitions could allow the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to study the munitions and even reverse-engineer them. “They will probably be reverse-engineered and used in future wars,” said the source. The British media published satellite images provided by the source, purporting to show two Russian military cargo planes at Mehrabad airport in Tehran, on August 20. At least one of the planes was carrying Iranian drones meant for Russia, according to the source. The case and munitions were sent as payment for suicide drones provided to Russia by Iran in recent months, according to the report. A further order of drones worth over $200 million has been purchased by Russia in the past few days as well, the source added. (JPost / VFI News)
BBC APOLOGIZES FOR IGNORING ANTI-SEMITIC, ANTI-ISRAEL CONTENT AND ERRORS: The BBC has apologized for its years-long record of ignoring complaints about anti-Israel bias and anti-Semitism in its Arab-language department, a UK-based Jewish media outlet reported Thursday, November 3.
In the statement to the JC, a spokesperson for the British public broadcaster said, “We apologize for the unacceptable delay and will ensure formal responses are issued as soon as possible.” The apology comes more than a year after media monitoring group Camera accused the BBC of “normalizing Jew-hate” in 26 separate instances during its coverage of Israel’s war with Gaza-based terror groups in May 2021. BBC responses to Israel-related complaints have taken up to a year, with many ignored entirely. In many cases, even when there was acknowledgement of factual errors, bias, or otherwise, no corrections were issued. “The BBC’s complaint system is unable to meet its own standards when it comes to content in Arabic about Israel and Jews,” a spokesperson for Camera said. The BBC’s own rules state that complaints are addressed within ten working days. In one instance, the broadcaster took a year to acknowledge an error in a report about holy sites in Jerusalem, but the mistake remains online more than two months later. A BBC spokesperson said: “We apologize for the unacceptable delay and will ensure formal responses are issued as soon as possible.” Campaign Against Anti-Semitism dismissed the apology as “forced.” “For years, the BBC has shown a disdainful attitude towards Jewish concerns and failed to engage with the community’s complaints,” the group said. “The rot has been festering for years.” (BB / VFI News)
FIRE BREAKS OUT ON IRANIAN OIL PIPELINE, IRGC OFFICE NEARBY ATTACKED: A fire broke out on an oil pipeline in the port city of Bandar Mahshahr in southwestern Iran on Sunday, November 6, sparking suspicions of foul play as protests continued to rage across Iran.
Video reportedly from the scene showed a large plume of smoke rising from an area near oil tanks. The fire caused damages, but no casualties were reported, according to Islamic media. The governor of Bandar Mahshahr said that the fire was contained and that the cause of the incident is under investigation. While Iranian social media users theorized that the fire could have been caused by sabotage, there were no reports by opposition or regime media indicating that this was the case. Additionally, on Sunday, a military headquarters belonging to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) was targeted by an “attack,” with the IRGC officers killing one of the attackers, while a second attacker escaped. The IRGC did not provide further details. (JPost / VFI News)
IRAN COMPLETES RAILWAY TO DISTRACT FROM MASSACRED PROTESTORS – ANALYSIS: Iran has completed another section of its Chahbahar-Zahedan railroad, which is supposed to be part of a larger network of railways that form new strategic corridors.
Normally, the completion of a new section of the railway would be a time to remark about how Iran is trying to knit its economy into that of India and also link it with Central Asia and the Caucasus. But the report about the completion of a section of the railroad, which stretches from the port of Chahbahar to Zahedan in eastern Iran, reflects the focus on protests in that part of the country. Iran has been accused of massacring protesters in its southeastern Baluchestan province. The rail link to Zahedan is important in this context because the regime would prefer to build rail lines and focus on the economy than deal with protesters. In that context, the regime has used a brutal hand with the protests in this far-off region, with reports of massacres of dissidents. The Islamic Republic has been careful not to massacre protesters in the center of the country, particularly around Tehran, but it has been more brutal in the Kurdistan Region in western Iran and in the southeast. This is because the regime has gambled that it can treat minority regions with more brutality than the Farsi-speaking center. (JPost / VFI News)
BAHRAIN: WE WILL CONTINUE TO BUILD OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH ISRAEL: Bahrain will continue to build its relationship with Israel after former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the right triumphed in Israel’s general election, the diplomatic adviser to Bahrain’s king said on Saturday, November 5, according to British media.
The diplomatic adviser, Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, said Netanyahu’s win was “normal and always expected”. “We have an agreement with Israel, part of the Abraham Accords, and we will stick to our agreement and we expect it to continue in the same line and continue building our partnership together,” he was quoted as having told reporters. “We will want to make an example and succeed together and face all the threats,” he said, responding to a question about a multilateral regional approach to security that includes Israel. At the Negev summit which took place in March of this year, Israel and Bahrain signed a Warm Peace agreement between the two countries, which is a roadmap for the development of bilateral relations between the two countries over the next decade. (INN / VFI News)
VIDEO OF HERZOG AND TUNISIAN PM ANGERS ARAB USERS ON TWITTER: Arab users of Twitter were outraged on Monday, November 7, after a video posted to Twitter showed President Isaac Herzog talking with the Prime Minister of Tunisia, Najla Bouden, at the COP27 climate conference being held in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.
Herzog and Bouden were seen smiling during their brief exchange at the conference, according to Israeli media. Responses to the video referred to Bouden’s smile toward Herzog as an “unacceptable offense” on her part, and noted that she seemed embarrassed by the kindness and politeness that Herzog showed towards her. Some users described the interaction between the two leaders as a “quick conversation of normalization” during an official photo shoot as part of the conference, but noted that the exchange lasted only a few seconds. Others blasted the exchange and described the conversation as “normalization between Tunisia and the occupation”. One user wrote that the interaction was a “shame” and a “scandal”, and added: “Normalization is tantamount to betrayal.” Tunisia, like most Arab countries, does not have diplomatic relations with Israel. After several Arab countries normalized ties with Israel in 2020 as part of the Abraham Accords, Tunisia reiterated it is not interested in establishing diplomatic relations with Israel and its position will not be affected by any international changes. (INN / VFI News)
ISRAELI SCIENTISTS MAKE BREAKTHROUGH ON PRODUCING ‘GREEN’ HYDROGEN FUEL:One can split an atomic nucleus to produce energy, but can you also split water to create environment-friendly hydrogen fuel? Doing so currently has two drawbacks: It is both time and energy intensive. But now, researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beersheba and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa have taken a different path.
BGU environmental physicist Prof. Arik Yochelis and Technion materials science professor Avner Rothschild believe they have identified new pathways that would speed up the catalytic process they think will reduce the invested electrical energy costs significantly. Their splitting process is assisted by solar energy, which is known scientifically by the term photoelectrochemistry, and lowers the amount of the invested electrical energy needed to break the chemical bonds in the water molecule to generate hydrogen and oxygen. Oxygen evolution – the process of generating molecular oxygen (O2) by a chemical reaction, usually from water – requires the transfer of four electrons to create one oxygen molecule and then the adding of two hydrogen molecules to make water. According to the current model, those electrons move one after the other in a sequence of four steps on an atomic reaction site, that makes the chemical reaction energetically difficult. However, Yochelis and Rothschild showed – both theoretically and experimentally – a new paradigm, where two electrons can simultaneously be transferred at different reaction sites, reducing the energy barriers for oxygen evolution. They were originally deterred by experiments that did not fit the existing paradigm, so they set out to find a different technique. (JPost / VFI News)
The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by VFI writers and editors are based on the best information received.
Blessings from Jerusalem,
Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff