29 August 2007

Twenty-First Birthday in the Hands of Hamas

The World cried for Alan Johnsons release when he was taken captivity by his Palestinian abducters, where are the cries for this young mans release from the Western World who was taken captivity by Hamas.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Twenty-First Birthday in the Hands of Hamas
Please pray for Gilad and Israel’s MIA’s

By Patrick Reilly
Special to ASSIST News Service

TEL AVIV, ISRAEL (ANS) -- The International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem reported on Monday, August 28, that Ahmed Youssef, an aide to the Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, has taunted Israel by talking of releasing a videotape of Gilad Shalit and Israeli soldiers held hostage in the Gaza strip.
Gilad Shalit, Twenty-one today

Today Gilad should have been celebrating his 21st birthday with family and friends. Instead the young Israeli soldier, who was kidnapped from the Israeli side of the border more than two years ago, will spend it 15 meters below ground level in a small bunker reported to be packed with explosives.

An audio tape of Gilad was released by Hamas on June 25th of this year to commemorate the first anniversary of his capture. On the one minute and twenty-one second broadcast Gilad said, “Mom and Dad, my Sister and brother, my friends in the IDF. I say hello to you from captivity and miss you all. I have passed an entire year in captivity and still my health is deteriorating and I must receive extensive treatment in hospital.” He goes onto denounce the IDF and Israeli Government for failing to give into his captor’s demands to release Palestinian prisoners in what is believed to be a carefully prepared speech prepared by those holding him to ransom.

The international Red Cross has been denied access to Gilad to assess his physical, mental and emotional state of health as it has been denied access to several other members of the IDF being held hostage.

Zachary Baumel, Zvi Feldman and Yehuda Katz, have been held for more than twenty five years following the first war with Lebanon in 1982. They were carried off into captivity when their tanks were struck by anti tank missiles.

For more than a quarter of a century their families have endured unimaginable suffering knowing that their loved ones are being held by people possessed with a hatred of the Jews.

This year will also be the 21st anniversary of the capture of Ron Arad who was taken hostage when he forced to bail out of his Israeli jet when it malfunctioned over Lebanon. His family received a letter from him a year of his captured. Nothing more was heard from him until last year when the BBC Broadcast a video of the airman.

Guy Hever was last seen ten years ago near the border with Syria, he disappeared without trace and his family have heard nothing from or about him since.
Hezbollah taunt's Israel with a poster of Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev

Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev were taken hostage last year just weeks before Gilad, when their convoy of vehicles patrolling on the Israeli side of the border, were ambushed by Hezbollah. Reports at the time suggested the two were badly injured in the attack before they were dragged across the border.

Hezbollah recently erected a large poster in full view of the Israeli army and the UN near to were to two were last seen.

Tonight in Tel Aviv, Gilad’s parent’s family and friends are holding a vigil in Rabin Square to “celebrate” his 21st birthday with a large birthday cake, which will be shared with passers by.

The Rev Rob Carroll, a Christian minister who has campaigned endlessly for years on behalf of the Israeli MIA’s said in a email sent to ANS, “Whilst the world looks to the birthday of IDF soldier Gilad Shalit as a reminder of his captivity - we must be mindful there is a battle of wits going on to obtain his freedom.

This is between the government of Israel and those who are holding him within the Palestinian community. The Palestinians are using him as pawn to gain benefits, i.e. the release of terrorists from Israeli jails. On the other hand, the Israeli government don't want to be seen giving in to what is blackmail.

Alongside this, there is a spiritual battle going on. Let us keep these MIA’s in prayer, bringing their case before the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that He will return both Gilad Schalit and the other MIA home before any other birthday comes around.

Pray also that the Lord who came to set the captives free will comfort and strengthen these men in their loneliness and isolation from their families, friends and the world.”

For more information, or to be added to the online petition calling for the release of the MIA's, go to www.miauk.org.uk

Note from Patrick Reilly. I would like to thank “Sister Sue” for proofreading this story.

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