Is this the sound of worship in Jesus’ time? — audio

The sacred chants of the ancient Jewish Temples in Jerusalem are a long-lost art. But some musicologists believe the 2,000-year-old notes can be reconstructed by drawing on traditional prayer songs heard in synagogues today, extrapolating from the sounds of biblical instruments like the harp and observing medieval church incantation that has common roots in the Holy Land.

These efforts thrill pious Jews who would like to see a new Jewish Temple built to prepare for the arrival of a messiah. Others worry that temple revivalism could inflame Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians. Al Aqsa, Islam’s third-holiest mosque, now sits where the Temple is believed to have stood nearly 2,000 years ago.

Additionally, many scholars are skeptical about the academic rigor of the research. Nothing is ever simple in the Middle East.

Dan Williams in Jerusalem has sounded out all sides.

Photo by: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
Audio produced by: Bethel Habte
Editing by: Jason Fields

An Israeli-Zionist-Arab-Muslim Speaks –video

Sarah Zoabi is an Israeli-Arab citizen who eloquently expresses her Arab-Israeli-Zionist identity. Despite the inevitability of receiving death threats, she is outspoken about the Jewish people’s right to their own state. Like her son Mohammed, she believes that the State of Israel is a “paradise” for Arabs to live as citizens. Hear her speech at the Israeli Knesset on October 14, 2015 as she explains that Israeli-Arabs enjoy freedoms that do not exist in any Arab country.

Video By Iranian Leader Khamenei’s Office: U.S. And Its Allies Were Behind Paris Attacks

A video posted November 17, 2015 on an IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps)-affiliated Facebook page, titled “Who Was Behind the Paris Attacks” and produced by the office of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, claimed that the real culprits behind the attacks were the U.S. and its allies, who, it said, had created ISIS and provided it with arms and training in order to further its own goals in the world.

The thumbnail preceding the video shows Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, U.S. President Obama, and Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi in collusion.

Thumbnail preceding the video showing Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, U.S. President Obama, and ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi in collusion.
Thumbnail preceding the video showing Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, U.S. President Obama, and ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi in collusion.

The following are excerpts from the video, which was narrated in computer-generated English [though with a distinctly Scandinavian accent]:

Narrator: “France is going through sad bloody nights. Bloodiest blood has been shed on the streets of Paris, reportedly by the ISIS terrorists. Many express condolences. Even the Saudi king and the U.S. president. The same ones whose involvement in creating the ISIS project is being exposed more than ever.

“All right, we’d better have a flashback to find out where the ISIS emerged from.

“Western media on November 2014 revealed that the ISIS was established as a results of a mistake by the government of the United States in Camp Bucca [in Iraq] during the process of creating an alliance between Al-Qaeda and the Ba’th party. When [ISIS leader Abu Bakr] Al-Baghdadi was released from the American Bucca prison in Iraq, he had already turned from a typical Ba’thi fellow into a super professional terrorist who had established a deep and rare relationship with both [the] Ba’th party and the Al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Capture 11-17-15 4

“Considering that this story happened in an American prison and through a special process, the relationship could not be regarded as a mere coincidence.

“After the creation of ISIS, which was an outcome of creating an alliance between the Ba’th party and the Al-Qaeda in Iraq, the U.S. dropped weapons for ISIS forces and claimed it was done by accident.

“Through a similar process, the United States trained forces in the name of moderate Syrian rebels who would join the ISIS through two or three intermediaries. The process did not end there and reports reveal that ISIS had been enjoying financial adds [sic] from the U.S. and its allies.

Wesley Clark, former NATO supreme commander, in CNN interview (Feb 17, 2015): “Look, ISIS got started through funding from our friends and allies, because, as people will tell you in the region, if you want somebody who will fight to the death against Hizbullah, you don’t put out a recruiting poster and say, you know, sign up for us, we’re gonna make a better world. You go after zealots and you go after these religious fundamentalists. That’s who fights Hizbullah.”

Narrator: “Of course, no one should be surprised by U.S. support for ISIS, as this was not unprecedented and American politicians had already admitted having supported Al-Qaeda.”

Hillary Clinton Testimony (April 23, 2009): “I mean, let’s remember here, the people we are fighting today, we funded. We funded.”

Narrator: “When the 9/11 tragedy occurred in the U.S., and while the main perpetrators of this event have not yet been introduced to the world, the U.S. government launched attacks Iraq and Afghanistan as a response, and started to spread insecurity and terrorism in the region for a decade.

“This act of war, in turn, distracted public opinion from Israeli crimes, the spread of terrorism in West Asia, and set many Muslim countries against one another.

“What are we going to witness after the Paris attacks?”

On screen: “” (website of Supreme Leader Khamenei)


Contact MEMRI at
P.O. Box 27837, Washington, DC 20038-7837
Phone: (202) 955-9070 | Fax: (202) 955-9077

Donate to MEMRI

The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) is an independent, non-profit organization that translates and analyzes the media of the Middle East. Copies of articles and documents cited, as well as background information, are available on request.

MEMRI holds copyrights on all translations. Materials may only be used with proper attribution.

Israel: Seeing is believing — video

Treat yourself to an uplifting, six-minute virtual tour of the Apple of God’s eye. Gorgeous scenery, an abundance of smiles, and snappy music await you in the video below. See Israel’s seas, cities, harbors, architecture, archaeology, art, culture, technology, people, skies, sports, and varied wildlife. You’ll sky- and scuba-dive… no passport, parachute, or snorkel necessary. Such a rainbow of cultures and traditions, you may need to catch your breath before watching it again.

Brand New Passover Song Will Have You Groovin’–video’s new Pesach (Passover) song to get you clapping and singing along. For lyrics, click on the “cc” (closed captions) box that will appear at the bottom of the screen once the video begins. Enjoy!

Pesach, four cups cold
Holy Moses, Egyptian gold

This one, for family
The hagada, straight masterpiece

Matzah, marror
Eatin’ it up at the Seder

Got Kittel on with Saint Laurent
Save the Afikoman for later

Now comes blood, all red!
Called for Moses, he’s a Magician

Frogs, lice, on head!
Wild beasts and hail I said

It’s so dark, where’s Fred?
Let us go, Pharaoh got no cred

Firstborn, he’s dead!
Say Hebrews, let’s start running.
Break it down

Jews wrote the hallelujah
Jews wrote the hallelujah
Jews wrote the hallelujah

’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you
’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you
’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you

Passover night and we are living it up
Fill it up the Four cups

Matzah crumblin’ up
Chametz: burned it all up
Afikoman’s wrapped up
Don’t be slaves, just rise up

Pesach funk is what’s up
Hey, hey, hey, oi!

Stop! Wait a minute
Fill my cup with the Maneschewitz
Take a sip, lean your chest
Yankele! Get the stretch!

Say four questions, the four sons,
four cups, not too many
and we thank God for freedom
Headin’ to our land of milk ‘n’ honey

Freedom! Oh man
Gonna live my life the best way I can

Freedom! We can
Make the Jew in you to a hero man
Freedom! I am…

Say goodbye to those shackles and
Freedom! Hot sand!
More matzah in your tummy.

Break it down

Jews wrote the hallelujah
Jews wrote the hallelujah
Jews wrote the hallelujah

’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you
’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you
’Cause Pesach Funk gon’ give it to you

Passover night and we are living it up
Fill it up the Four cups

Matzah crumblin’ up
Chametz: burned it all up
Afikoman’s wrapped up
Don’t be slaves, just rise up

Pesach funk is what’s up
Hey, hey, hey, oi!

matzah (matzoh, matza, matzo) — unleavened bread
marror (maror) — bitter herbs
hagada (haggadah) — order of the Passover Seder (dinner)
kittle (kitl) — white robe Jewish males wear on special occasions
Afikoman (Afikomen) — in Greek means “that which comes later”. Many families hide the Afikomen–either the parents hide it and the children search for it, or the children hide it and parents search. A prize is often given to whoever locates this important piece of matzah. The Seder cannot continue until the Afikomen has been located and consumed.
Chametz — food made with a leavening agent. Houses must be purged of all chametz before Passover

Netanyahu’s Christmas greeting

Jerusalem Post
By Staff, December 24, 2014

PM releases video holiday greeting with the Christians of Israel and the Middle East a “very merry Christmas.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Christmas greeting . (photo credit:screenshot)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Christmas greeting . (photo credit:screenshot)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wished Christians in Israel and around the world a “very merry Christmas,” on the eve of the holiday that marks the birth of Jesus Christ.

In a video statement released Wednesday night, the premier noted the persecution of Christians in the Middle East have faced recently.

He stressed that Israel stands as an exception to the “daily staple” of “violence, persecution and fear” that Christians across the region face.

“Here in Israel, religious freedom is a sacred principle. Israel’s Christian citizens enjoy the full blessing of freedom and democracy. Their equal rights are enshrined in Israeli law,” Netanyahu stated.

Speaking from Jerusalem, Netanyahu culminated his holiday greeting with a “call of prayer for a more peaceful and tolerant world.”

German Nationals Join Kurdish Army Fighting ISIL – video

Genuinely Moderate Moslems

In late September, France 24 TV aired a report (posted below) about German Kurds returning to Iraq in order to join the Peshmerga forces fighting ISIL. According to the report, hundreds of European Kurds have already joined the fighting. The following is a transcript of the video.

Reporter: “When the sun goes down, the Peshmerga patrols return to base. Hussein and Lukman resemble the other fighters, but their story is different. They are Germans who came here three months ago to fight the Islamic State [in Syria and the Levant (ISIL)].

“50-year-old Lukman lived for 19 years in Germany where he worked as a truck driver. His wife and five children stayed behind in Munich.”

Lukman: “We heard that the terrorist organization known as the Islamic State was attacking our brothers. That’s why I decided to return and fight them. Many have returned (to fight), not only from my city, but from Cologne as well. Two of our men were killed in the town of Jalawla.”

Reporter: “Hussein Muhammad is from Cologne. Leaving behind his Kurdish orchestra, he exchanged his violin for a rifle. These two men both have battle experience. At the beginning of the 1990s, they fought in the Peshmerga against the Iraqi forces commanded by Saddam Hussein.

“Lukman shows us gruesome pictures – which we cannot show here – of corpses of ISIS fighters, which he took himself. He also shows us the explosives that awaited him and his comrades in a village.”

Lukman: “Look at the mines and explosives that they left in a village we attacked. The engineers managed to defuse them.”

Reporter: “Hundreds of European Kurds have returned to fight here. Another group awaits its turn.”

Hussein Muhammad: “Thank God [Allah] for the modern media in Germany, which enabled us to follow events here in real-time. We get calls every day from young men still in Germany asking how to get here to join us in battle. They are ready and willing to defend Kurdistan.”

Reporter: “When night falls, it is time to relax. Another day has gone by for Lukman and Hussein, who say that they will not return to Germany until the war is over.”

German Nationals Join Kurdish Army Fighting ISIS
France 24 Arabic TV (France) – September 28, 2014 – 02:22 (#4522)

Music Video: Israel, You’re Not Alone

With the turmoil currently happening in Israel, Zac Waller was recently inspired by the words “Israel, you’re not alone.”

Feeling a challenge to release this song immediately, due to it’s timely theme, Zac recorded a few scratch tracks on his own and then took the song to Nashville, TN. Within just a few days, a fully recorded, mixed, and mastered song was produced by a top quality studio in country music’s capital of the world.

His faithful media team took their cameras to downtown Nashville and rural Franklin, TN, and in less than half a day (and less than 48 hours before Zac and team were scheduled to fly to Israel), filmed a beautiful music video.