Tag: Syria

Some Jewish artifacts from Libya can still be brought into US, despite new import restrictions

(JTA) — Though the United States recently barred Libyan artifacts from entering the country, certain Jewish artifacts are exempt from the agreement, the State Department clarified.

Last month, the United States agreed to a request from Libya to bar certain Libyan artifacts from entering the country. Intended to prevent pillaging of artifacts and their sale on the black market, the agreement applied to artifacts dated 1911 and earlier. The original request by Libya, submitted last year, asked for Jewish artifacts to be included.

Activists decried the agreement, saying it gave ownership to Libya over objects, such as antique Torah scrolls, tombstones and…

An Israel-Hezbollah war could easily draw in Iran, US intelligence official warns

WASHINGTON (JTA) — A top Trump administration intelligence official warned of the “real potential” of war between Israel and Hezbollah that could bring in Iran and embroil the region in conflict.

“I worry about the prospect of real major state war in the Near East region,” David Cattler, the national intelligence manager for the Near East in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, told a Washington think tank on Tuesday.

“What if a war between Israel and Lebanese Hezbollah that emerges is not solely between them but becomes a northern war that embroils more of…

Hezbollah said to be on alert in fear of Israeli strike

(JTA) — Hezbollah reportedly has declared a state of emergency, fearing an Israeli attack.

The report Thursday in A-Rai al-Yum, an Arabic-language daily based in London, said that the Shiite militia has been on alert since Tuesday, at least in southern Lebanon, in anticipation of an Israeli strike on its forces or facilities. Citing sources within Hezbollah, the newspaper said the alert was over “secret maneuvers” that Hezbollah believes that the Israel Defense Forces has been carrying out recently.

Last month, Israel struck in Syria over what Israel said was a violation of its airspace by an unnamed aircraft…

Sen. Robert Menendez thanks AIPAC for backing him during corruption trial

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Sen. Robert Menendez received a hero’s welcome at AIPAC, where the New Jersey Democrat thanked the lobby for its support during his corruption trial.

Menendez, who returned recently to the top Democratic spot on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee after his trial ended in a mistrial, was among the few speakers to the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference to receive a standing ovation just for walking on the stage.

“Sometimes God puts a Goliath in your path until you find the David within you, and I found the David within me,”…

Trump says he may attend Jerusalem embassy opening

WASHINGTON (JTA) — President Donald Trump said he may be present in Jerusalem when the U.S. Embassy opens in May.

“We’re looking at coming,” Trump said Monday in opening his meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington, D.C. “If I can, I will.”

Trump said last month that the embassy move from Tel Aviv would take place in May, timed with Israel’s 70th anniversary, following his recognition in December that Jerusalem is the capital. He is also planning to build a new embassy in Jerusalem, which could take up to nine years. In the meantime, the…