Sunday, October 25, 2015

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Thank you very much for supporting our work at The Muqata. We appreciate your contribution and hope to be able to keep bringing you the most up to date and accurate news from Israel.

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Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael טובה הארץ מאד מאד

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An Important Message from Jameel at the Muqata

Hi All –

It has been a very crazy past few weeks, and we welcome many new followers from all over the Globe.  Over 36,000 people currently follow the Muqata on Facebook, over 7,500 on twitter, and a few hundred are using our Android mobile application.

We are currently followed from the following countries (and more):

USA, Israel, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, South Africa, Brazil, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, India, France, Philippines, Mexico, Switzerland, Spain, Sweden, Belgium, Indonesia, Argentina, Malaysia, Iraq, Norway, Gibraltar, Greece, Czech Republic, Turkey, Hungary, Poland, Ireland, Egypt, New Zealand (special shout out to our readers in NZ!), Portugal, Russia, Austria, Colombia, Chile, Panama, Denmark, and others.

We have large fan bases in the following cities (and more):

New York, NY; Jerusalem, Israel; Brooklyn, NY; Tel Aviv, Israel; London, England, United Kingdom; Melbourne, VIC, Australia; Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa; Los Angeles, CA; Toronto, ON, Canada; Chicago, IL; Bet Shemesh, Israel; Modi`in, Central District, Israel; Teaneck, NJ; Baltimore, MD; Sydney, NSW, Australia; Ra'anana, Central District, Israel; Efrat, , Israel ; Montreal, QC, Canada ; Miami, FL; Manchester, England, United Kingdom; Atlanta, GA; Giv`at Shmuel, Central District, Israel; Woodmere, NY; Philadelphia, PA ; Monsey, NY; Beit-Shemesh, Israel ; Boca Raton, FL ; Haifa, Israel ; Ma'ale Adummim,  Israel; Lakewood, NJ, Cleveland, OH; Passaic, NJ ; Pittsburgh, PA ; Silver Spring, MD ; West Hempstead, NY ; Houston, TX ; Boston, MA; Queens, NY ; Skokie, IL ; Bergenfield, NJ; Thornhill, ON, Canada ; Washington DC; San Diego, CA ; Miami Beach, FL ; Great Neck, NY and many other cities.

Our news service about Israel is purely volunteer and not for profit.  We anonymously volunteer around the clock to provide news from Israel in the hope that it will further connect people to the Land of Israel in the spirit of the ingathering of the exile.  Please help us keep our anonymity – if you know who we happen to be, please don’t spread the word.

There are many costs which we pay for out of pocket – webhosting, DNS, internal development to provide posting and editing on all social media platforms for staff, and our development for the android app and hopefully soon for an IOS/iPhone solution as well.  We thank those of you who have donated computer equipment, phones, and money to help us along the way.

Until we get a more formal fundraising process in place (Muqata t-shirts, cooking aprons, Muqata blue and white anti-terrorist umbrellas, Muqata coffee mugs, and other impressive apparel), we are turning to our fan base and asking for donations to help us cover our costs and to offer token appreciated to our computer and news staff.  There is a PayPal link here, which sends donations directly to us -- and we appreciate any donation, small or large.

While tensions are running very high in Israel, and we are trying hard as a society to maintain a semblance of normalcy – comments left here need to be “toned down”.  We will not tolerate blatant incitement.  When Israel haters screen-snapshot some of our comment threads to show the “hatred of Israel”, it doesn’t bring the Muqata any honor.  Yes, we know where the incitement comes from, yes we know where the hatred is taught, yes we know about all the daily lies coming from Arab leaders and their apologists around the world – but we don’t want to see comments that say “Death to Arabs…etc.”  We simply do not have the resources to screen comments, and we do not want to be shut down by Facebook for “not adhering to their social community standards” – no matter how hypocritical it may be that Arabic FB pages outright call for the destruction of Israel, and are not banned. 

We remind our readers that we adhere to the rules of the IDF military censor.  While news may be posted by foreign news services, we will not post any news stories that conflict with the censor.  Last night, rumors abounded of “IDF soldiers or officers or even senior officers who were kidnapped by Syria….IAF pilots taken hostage by ISIS” and many others.  Yet during the first hours of the incident last night, when the IDF had not yet ascertained the identity of the hang glider person who flew into Syria, there was a serious gag order to prevent additional news focus on the area of the search.  Had it been a Jewish Israeli who accidentally flew into Syria – the news blackout was essential for Israel to operate as quickly and quietly as possible. 

Lastly, when there are victims of terror, or fallen IDF soldiers or from other Israeli security services – we will not release names until they are cleared for publication.  Too many times in recent years, families of victims have found out via social media, whatsapp or SMS messages, of the death of their loved ones, instead of from professional and official sources. Until names are made public officially, do not post names, occupations, locations, or any information that can identify them.  We will ban people from the Muqata blog if they do.

Thank you again for your friendship and camaraderie – looking forward to sharing good news as well.


Jameel @ The Muqata 
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