The Brew: A Miracle in Israel No Less Than the Parting of the Red Sea?

Plus, an NBA player banned for betting on own games amid sports gambling ... and gambling addiction ... boom.

By Al Perrotta Published on April 18, 2024

Happy Thursday!

Today’s Brew starts with us on our knees.

Physicist Who Worked in Israeli Defense Industry Believes What Happened Saturday Night Was a Miracle on Par With the Parting of the Red Sea

He will cover you with his feathers,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day.  (Psalm 91.4-5)

That ain’t just a Psalm. That’s a headline news story.

To non-experts, Israel and its allies shooting down 99% of the 300 or so drones, cruise missiles, and ballistic missiles Iran fired at Israel Saturday night looked miraculous. Oxford astrophysicist Maximilian Abitbol, who worked in the Israeli defense ministry, says it literally was miraculous.

According to a post on X from tech columnist Hillel Fuld, he said,

“When I look at what happened on Motzai Shabbat, on a scientific level — it simply cannot happen!! Statistically.”

Abitbol said that with high technologies, a breach is expected. “Even a 90% rate of protection would have been a miracle.” The makers of the systems guarantee no more than 90%. However …

What happened is that everyone, but everyone – the pilots, the systems operators and the technology operators acted as one man, at one moment in total unity. If this is not an act of G-d, then I no longer know what a miracle is. It is greater than the victory of the Six Day War or the War of Independence. Those wars can also be explained through natural events. BUT the rescue that took place for the people of Israel on Motzai Shabbat is simply impossible naturally. I believe that this miracle saved the lives of many people from Israel.

The whole post is a must. And the graphic? Whew.

Yes, Israel’s true “Iron Dome” is the Hand of God.

And while we are in an Old Testament frame of mind: “Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household.” (Proverbs 15:27) We see the truth of this in the following item.

NBA Player Banned After Being Found to Have Bet on His Own Games

With sports leagues and sports channels ramping up their acceptance of (and even involvement in) sports gambling, and the airwaves filled with commercials for sports gaming, it was only a matter of time before players got in on the action illicitly.

If you encourage vice, don’t be surprised when you find it.

Jontay Porter of the Toronto Raptors has been banned for betting on NBA games, including his own. And worse: According to a league investigation, Porter shared “confidential information to sports bettors, liming his own participation in one or more games for betting purposes, and betting on NBA games.” He told a known sports bettor before a particular game about an undisclosed injury, and then limited his playing time in that game to four minutes, claiming he was “sick.” This allowed the bettor to place an $80,000 parley proposition bet that Porter would underperform, which would have earned the gambler $1.1 million.

According to ESPN, the unusual amount of action on Porter caught the eye of bookies. The $80,000 prop bet was caught and the payout frozen.

The league also discovered that on at least one occasion, Porter “bet the Raptors would lose.”

In announcing Porter’s ban, NBA commissioner Adam Silver said, “There is nothing more important than protecting the integrity of NBA competition for our fans, our teams and everyone associated with our sport, which is why Jontay Porter’s blatant violations of our game rules are being met with the most severe punishment.”

We have to call the NBA’s bluff on that one. Does it ban gambling ads during games? In fact, isn’t it proud of its association with sports gambling? The league didn’t mind announcing a partnership here. Or partnering with Draft Kings on a clothes line here.

Ads for Sports Betting on the Rise … And So Is Addiction

Will this scandal get much play on TV? According to, total spending on sports gambling TV ads reached $237.8 million last year. That’s 10% more than in 2022. The number of ads aired “more than doubled, from about 27,000 to nearly 60,000.” Will networks be willing to injure a cash cow?

You’ve probably noticed, but sports gambling ads aren’t just popping up on sports channels anymore. According to EDO Ad EnGage, such ads are showing up on such cable outlets as TBS, FXX, truT, Discover Life Channel, and American Heroes Channel.

We just saw the gambling scandal involving Dodger star Shohei Ohtani’s former interpreter. Now, a gambling scandal has hit the NBA. With sports gambling exploding, we can expect to see more cases. We’re certainly seeing more addictions.

NBC News reported earlier this month that calls to gambling addiction hotlines are spiking dramatically, and the callers are younger because smartphone apps and the ads bombarding them have led to a boom in online gambling.

Along The Stream

John Zmirak posts “We Don’t Care About Persecuted Christians Because We Don’t Want to Join Them.”

Chenyuan Snider is back with “Division Means We Are Free, But Maintaining That Freedom Requires Us to Engage.”


Al Perrotta is The Stream’s Washington bureau chief, coauthor with John Zmirak of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration, and coauthor of the counterterrorism memoir Hostile Intent: Protecting Yourself Against Terrorism.

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