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Israel Update: 22 September 2016
by Hazel Green
CO-OPERATION BETWEEN ISRAEL & HER NEIGHBOURS
Israel is helping the people of the Syrian villages on the other side of the fence in the Golan Heights. The IDF has set up a unit in the Golan to coordinate assistance to the villages – evacuating wounded to Israeli hospitals and providing medicine, food, clothing and blankets in the winter…These efforts assist the behind-the-scenes volunteer work of Israeli NGOs helping to save lives in Syria.
Recently, a bus from an aid organization brought 21 Syrian children and their parents from the Qunietra region to the Ziv Medical Center in Safed. The Western Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya has also been receiving busloads of Syrian children accompanied by their families over the past few weeks.
Many Arab residents of the West Bank and Gaza suffering from cancer or who need a transplant or children who need dialysis have to go to Israel for life-saving treatments. Road to Recovery’s 500 volunteers provide the Palestinians with a free ride and the company of an Israeli to ease their fears.
Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi applauded the cooperation between Israel and Egypt in Sinai in New York on Tuesday. According to foreign reports, the Israel Air Force is taking part in attacks against ISIS in Sinai and IDF Military Intelligence is assisting Egyptian forces to collect information about the terrorists there.
Among several attacks during the past week, the most serious occurred on Monday when two Israel Police officers were wounded in a stabbing attack in Jerusalem’s Old City. The Palestinian assailant walked behind the two officers, stabbing them several times. A female police officer was stabbed in the neck and is in very serious condition. The other officer shot the attacker.
A Jordanian national attempted to stab an IDF Border Policeman in the Old City of Jerusalem on Friday following afternoon prayers. The man ran at the policemen while yelling “Allahu Akbar” before he was killed. Jordanian authorities had expressed doubt that Amro had assaulted the Israelis, saying he was merely a tourist. Israel’s Foreign Ministry on Sunday sent video footage to Amman clearly showing the Jordanian brandishing knives and moving towards security forces.
A Palestinian attempted to stab an Israeli soldier at a checkpoint near Hebron in the on Tuesday. The assailant was shot and killed. On Monday, a stabbing attempt was thwarted in Hebron when soldiers managed to subdue the Palestinian assailant without opening fire. Earlier on Monday in Hebron, two Palestinian assailants attempted to stab Israeli soldiers before they were shot dead.
In answer to a question about the cost to the UK if “Israeli-owned and Israeli-based companies were banned from supplying generic medicines to the National Health Service.” Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health David Mowat replied that over 100 million prescriptions for medicines are from companies based in Israel.
Seeking a better way to keep track of their own autistic children’s whereabouts, an Israeli couple developed AngelSense a GPS and voice monitoring solution designed exclusively for children with special needs.
Sidekix, an Israeli navigation app geared to people walking in cities shows walkers the best on-foot routes, even orienting the map as you move so you always know which way is forward…The free app customizes your routes based on preprogrammed interests.
A new swuggling (swimming while juggling) world record has been set at the 2016 Sea Of Galilee Swim, when Shahar Cohen, 46,- he opted to swim the 3.5 kilometers while doing backstroke and juggling three balls.
Israeli textbooks see peace as an ultimate goal, maintain messages of tolerance and coexistence with Arabs and Palestinians, and do not incite against them, according to a new study released by IMPACT-se. which was founded in 1998, monitors education around the world and determines compliance according to UNESCO standards for tolerance… Israeli textbooks recognize Palestinian territories and cities and clearly mark them on maps. With regards to Arab and Muslim minorities, the report found that textbooks promote a “clear message of tolerance and coexistence” as well as a “respectful representation of Arab and Muslim culture and heritage.”
Professor Mohammed S. Dajani: When I accompanied Palestinian students to Auschwitz to teach them about the Holocaust, it was considered “normalization” and condemned as treason. The anti-normalization campaign fails to see that the Palestinian cause must be won inside of Israel and that normalization is an essential step in the process to end the conflict. This campaign contradicts the 1993 Oslo Accords, which called for the end of incitement and encourages the process of normalization. Anti-normalization undermines the peace process, blocking the possibility of reconciliation and conflict resolution
Avi Issacharoff There is a sudden uptick in the wave of Palestinian lone wolf terror attacks. One terrorist inspires other friends and relatives to carry out an attack. There is no discernible rise in incitement or in the level of hostility between Israel and the Palestinians, nor is there any dramatic deterioration in ties between the PA and Israel. Later this month, Israel will detail a series of economic steps it intends to take in order to improve the economic situation in the PA.
Moshe Yaalon: While the Palestinian question still occupies a good deal of attention, it is not solvable at this time. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the core of the conflict does not stem from the disputed territories captured by Israel in the 1967 war, but from the fact that the Palestinians are not willing to accept the presence of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people. As long as they are unwilling to recognize Israel’s legitimacy, there is no value in making territorial concessions. This line of reasoning also dispels the idea that unilateral Israeli withdrawals would create the political momentum for a peace plan.
Israel should focus on improving economics, infrastructure, law enforcement, and governance in the Palestinian Authority. Ultimately, the Palestinians will also have to make sweeping changes to their education system, stop demonizing Jews, and concede that Israel has a right to at least some of the land. In other words, they cannot advance the cause of peace while also claiming that Tel Aviv is a settlement. These broad changes to Palestinian society are a prerequisite to real negotiations.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Hamas and Palestinian Authority (PA) officials have turned medical care into a business that earns them hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. This corruption has enabled top officials in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to embezzle millions of shekels from the PA budget.
How do Palestinian patients obtain permits to receive medical treatment in Israel? By paying bribes to senior Palestinian officials in the West Bank and Gaza. At the same time, Palestinians whose lives are not in danger but who pretend they are – including relatives of senior PA and Hamas officials – receive permits to travel to Israel and other countries under the pretext of medical emergency, while those who cannot afford to pay the bribes can wait years before obtaining such permits.
Israel is to expand its humanitarian assistance to internally-displaced Syrians who have been uprooted by the five-year civil war and are stuck in camps near the Syria-Israel border…In addition to treating rebel fighters wounded in the conflict, Israeli hospitals will now begin treating the sick. The first busload of patients, numbering around 60 Syrians — mostly children — is set to arrive at a hospital in Safed, northern Israel, soon. The initiative will see one bus a day crossing from Syria into Israel to receive basic medical care, with patients returning to Syria once they have completed their treatment,
Mortar fire from Syria has struck Israeli territory on several occasions. In response to the fifth such incident in just over a week on Monday (hours after a ceasefire was put in place) the IDF struck artillery positions belonging to the Syrian regime on Tuesday. Later Israel dismissed as false Syrian claims that an Israeli plane had been shot down.
Israeli P.M. Netanyahu rejected international criticism of West Bank settlement construction last Friday, equating it to “ethnic cleansing” of Jews and insisting the settlements are not an obstacle to peace, He said “No one would seriously claim that the nearly 2 million Arabs living inside Israel, that they’re an obstacle to peace,” Netanyahu said. “Yet the Palestinian leadership actually demands a Palestinian state with one precondition: No Jews. There’s a phrase for that: It’s called ethnic cleansing….It’s even more outrageous that the world doesn’t find this outrageous. Since when is bigotry a foundation for peace?”
Israel Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold told the City of David’s 17th Annual Archeological Conference on Thursday, “Our affinity to Jerusalem is a certain historical truth – not just a narrative,” as archeologists are scientifically proving the Jewish people’s connection to Jerusalem. Gold addressed “the international attempt to disengage Jerusalem from Jewish history, focusing specifically on a UNESCO resolution adopted in April which ignored Judaism’s ties to its holiest site, the Temple Mount. He accused UNESCO of promoting the distortion of history. He also referred to British documentation of a Jewish majority in Jerusalem in 1863.
Israeli government ministers met Facebook officials on Monday to discuss how to tackle incitement on the social media network. Over the past four months Israel submitted 158 requests to Facebook to remove inciting content and another 13 requests to YouTube.Facebook granted 95% of the requests and YouTube granted 80%.
52 U.S. police officers from seven states arrived in Israel for a week of counter-terrorism training. The leader of the delegation, Michael Safris, expressed respect for Israel’s efficiency and advanced tactics, coupled with its ability to enforce the law in a humane manner, despite dealing with countless depraved terrorists. The delegation is one of more than 200 from across the globe annually hosted by the Israel Police.
A delegation that included Hindu gurus, Buddhist monks, Shinto priests and leaders of the Sikh, Jain and Taoist traditions met P.M. Netanyahu and President Rivlin on Tuesday at a Jerusalem conference aimed at deepening Israel-Asia ties. Noting the antiquity of the faiths represented, Rivlin first voiced greetings in Arabic to the Muslim communities in Israel and throughout the world who are celebrating the festival of Id al-Adha.
Israel is a pioneer in the use of medical cannabis. Recently, the government approved a plan to relax some of the medical cannabis restrictions including increasing the number of doctors who can issue cannabis prescriptions, removing limits on the number of marijuana growers, making cannabis available at approved pharmacies etc. The Cann10 International Medical Conference was held earlier this week in Tel Aviv.
Thousands of West Bank Arabs swam at beaches in and around Tel Aviv on Tuesday, after being granted permits to visit during the Eid al-Adha holiday… Palestinian Arab women in burkinis swam or played with children near bikini-clad Israelis and foreigners. 100,000 visiting permits for Palestinian Arabs from the West Bank were issued by Israel for the Eid holiday which started on Monday.
John Hilary, executive director of War on Want, will step down next month amid investigations by the Charity Commission into the organisation’s “campaigning and political activities” after growing controversy about the charity’s work against Israel. War on Want funds Israeli Apartheid Week, an event at universities that Jewish Human Rights Watch has accused of “targeting and harassing Jewish students and inviting anti-semitic speakers to campuses”.
Claire Lomas, 36 who is paralyzed from the chest down after a riding accident has completed the Great North Run wearing an Israeli exoskeleton. Lomas, who is 16 weeks pregnant, took five days to walk the half marathon in the ReWalk suit.
Israel and the Palestinian Authority have reached a deal to settle the Palestinians’ outstanding debt of $530 million to the Israel Electric Corporation (IEC)…The agreement requires the PA to collect unpaid electricity bills from Palestinian customers in the West Bank. And the PA will assume full responsibility for paying the IEC, which formerly had to collect from several different local electricity companies in the West Bank.
Israeli security forces uncovered over 200lb (about 100 kg) of bomb-making supplies in a West Bank village on Monday. In a separate raid, the army found two pipe bombs and two Molotov cocktails in a different village.
Doron Shaziri, 49, won a bronze medal at the Rio Paralympics in the men’s 50-meter rifle three positions final. He has won at least one medal in every Paralympics since 1996. Moran Samuel has won a bronze medal for rowing.
Exciting tributes, a new lead singer with plenty of charisma, and some affection for Hebrew were just part of Queen and Adam Lambert’s concert on Monday night, attended by over 50,000 fans in Tel Aviv.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Sheikh Abdullah Tamimi (from Hebron) and his colleagues do not believe in boycotts and divestment. They are convinced that real peace can be achieved through dialogue between Palestinians and all Israelis — not just those who are affiliated with the left-wing. For Tamimi, real peace begins between the people and through economic cooperation and improving the living conditions of the Palestinians. This is more important than the talk about the establishment of a Palestinian state, which he believes, under the current circumstances, is not a realistic option. This notion goes against the ideas of the advocates of “anti-normalization”…..and those promoting BDS.
*Ron Kronish:This week during the Muslim holiday of Id al-Adha, I visited two malls in Jerusalem where I saw hundreds of Muslim families out shopping for the holiday. No one harassed them, no one even noticed. Israeli Muslims easily enter Jewish malls without fear and travel to vacation spots all over Israel without trepidation.They are Israeli citizens and feel comfortable here. They share the workplace with Jews and are part and parcel of the landscape and of civil society.
The KYM (formerly Kingston Young Marrieds) social group marked Rosh Chodesh Ellul – the month in the Hebrew calendar which heralds the arrival of Rosh Hashanah – with an apples and honey blind tasting to a soundtrack ranging from Abba (“Honey Honey”) to Glenn Miller (“Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree”) and the “William Tell Overture”. To see photographs of the event, click Continue. Continue reading →
A six-year-old girl from Syria who was treated for her wounds and a blood disease in Haifa was discharged on Tuesday after her new Israeli friends held a farewell party. She had arrived at Rambam’s Ruth Rappaport Children’s Hospital in early February as a small, scared, and wounded child. Once she recovered from the injuries that brought her across the border to Israel, the medical team noted from her blood tests that she suffered from a blood disease that was due to poor bone marrow function. Complex arrangements to find a family bone marrow donor and bring him over to Israel were successful. http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Syrian-schoolgirl-goes-back-home-after-being-cured-of-blood-disease-in-Israel-464844