Israel news summary

Israel News for 12-14-2020

News Update

The Health Ministry reported 1,707 new coronavirus cases on Sunday. There are currently 17,373 active cases of which 353 people are hospitalized in serious condition and 122 on ventilators. There have been 3,003 coronavirus related deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Likud MK David Bitan has been placed on a ventilator, two days after he was admitted to hospital suffering from COVID-19. Bitan contracted the virus a week ago, after attending a reception for hundreds of Ethiopian immigrants along with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi and other officials.

The Health Ministry expects around 240 Israelis to return from visits to the UAE with positive COVID-19 diagnoses during the month of December. Over 25,000 Israelis are expected to visit the UAE this month.

Researchers from Tel Aviv University say they can prove that the coronavirus can be killed quickly and cheaply using ultraviolet light-emitting diodes (UV-LEDs). To read more click here.

Sources in Jerusalem have said that Oman will be the next Arab nation to normalize relations with Israel. The sources added Saudi Arabia might also normalize diplomatic relations with Israel before outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump leaves office next month. They also said that talks were being held with Niger, Mali, Djibouti, Mauritania, and the Comoro Islands in Africa as well as with Indonesia, Pakistan, Brunei, Bangladesh, and the Maldives in Asia.

A day after Morocco announced it was set to sign a deal with Israel, the Trump administration notified Congress that it was moving ahead with a $1 billion weapons sale to Morocco.

Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems Ltd. signed a $27 million deal to help the Romanian air force upgrade its aircraft and systems.

Today is the fourth day of Hanukkah. The holiday began last Thursday night and lasts for eight days, commemorating the miraculous burning of one day’s supply of oil for eight days in the menorah in the Holy Temple rededicated by the Maccabees and the Jewish nation. The holiday also commemorates the victory of the Jewish people over the Hellenists, who tried to eradicate the Jewish religion. It was the first time a nation rose up in arms in the defense of religious freedom.

The lights of Hanukkah remind us to cherish our faith and freedom, and resist those that try to deprive us of them. May we all continue to enjoy the freedom represented by our Hanukkah lights and share the light with the entire world.

What do you get when you mix Hamilton, Hanukkah and a bunch of singing yeshivah boys? A pretty awesome music video. To watch click here.

To hear a Hassidic Hanukkah medley, mostly in Yiddish, click here.