Friday, March 06, 2015

From Ian:

The Leader of the Free World isn't Obama
He’s the Leader of the Free World, elected by a civilized nation: militarily powerful because of, and not in spite of, it’s cultural commitment to science and art and medicine.
Although he spent much of his early life overseas, the Leader of the Free World grew up in the Northeast, and graduated from Harvard University. That he has a deep and abiding love for America is self-evident: he admires our energy, our inventiveness; our decency and kindness; our innate friendliness and charity. He loves our culture; he admires our private sector which generates so much innovation. And the Leader of the Free World admires and respects our vast military power, and the restraint which it is used – to him, it is indeed the Arsenal of Democracy.
And even though he has grown up the victim of bigotry and hatred, the Leader of the Free World loves America, even though slurs are applied to him still today. In spite of all that, he loves everything she stands for.
And there he stood, backed by American flags and framed in American glory – on the floor of the House of Representatives; where his predecessors made the case to fight against the great evils in the world: slavery. Nazism. Japanese Imperialism. Communism.


Alan Johnson: Bowen’s shame over Holocaust remark
On Tuesday, with the Israeli Prime Minister still on his feet addressing a joint session of Congress, the BBC’s Middle East Editor Jeremy Bowen, lip curled, tweeted “#NetanyahuSpeech He acknowledges Elie Wiesel in audience. Once again Netanyahu plays the Holocaust card. Don’t repeat mistakes of the past”.
Mr Bowen’s idea is that when an Israeli leader mentions the Holocaust he is being tricksy, manipulative, acting in bad faith, “playing a card” to get narrow advantage in contemporary politics, not really expressing a genuine thought about the Holocaust itself or a genuine fear about a second, nuclear, Holocaust.
And that idea, of the Bad Faith Jew, is unmistakably dripping in the assumptions and myths of classic antisemitism.
Mr Bowen did what only the antisemitic extremists used to do, reduce the invocation of the Holocaust to a common sense indicator of ‘Zionist’ bad faith and something to disdain.
Well, the Holocaust happened. It happened to the Jews. And now the Jews are threatened again by a genocidal regime. These are facts.
NYTs: In U.C.L.A. Debate Over Jewish Student, Echoes on Campus of Old Biases
It seemed like routine business for the student council at the University of California, Los Angeles: confirming the nomination of Rachel Beyda, a second-year economics major who wants to be a lawyer someday, to the council’s Judicial Board.
Until it came time for questions.
“Given that you are a Jewish student and very active in the Jewish community,” Fabienne Roth, a member of the Undergraduate Students Association Council, began, looking at Ms. Beyda at the other end of the room, “how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view?”
For the next 40 minutes, after Ms. Beyda was dispatched from the room, the council tangled in a debate about whether her faith and affiliation with Jewish organizations, including her sorority and Hillel, a popular student group, meant she would be biased in dealing with sensitive governance questions that come before the board, which is the campus equivalent of the Supreme Court.
The discussion, recorded in written minutes and captured on video, seemed to echo the kind of questions, prejudices and tropes — particularly about divided loyalties — that have plagued Jews across the globe for centuries, students and Jewish leaders said.
Remembering those who stand silently outside
The killing of a Danish volunteer standing guard outside a Copenhagen synagogue by a terrorist gunman of Palestinian Arab "origin" who, in the opaque language favoured by many news editors, had become "radicalized" while serving prison time for stabbing someone, has thrown some light on the phenomenon of Jewish communities more and more required - and determined - to protect their lives from similar malevolents.
Dan Uzan's murder on the night of February 14-15, 2015 came as he patrolled a Jewish facility in sub-freezing temperatures while a family celebration - a bat mitzvah with dozens of children taking part - was happening inside. Finn Norgaard, a 55-year-old Danish documentary maker, was shot dead and three police officers were wounded in a nearby attack some hours earlier executed by the same perpetrator.
Volunteer security people, like Dan Uzan (and like groups in Melbourne, Sydney, Brooklyn, Southern California, throughout the United Kingdom and many other places), are part of the answer, and regularly place their lives and well-being at risk in Jewish communities throughout the world today. The reasons why are sadly obvious to anyone alert to the rising threats.



French Jewish leader calls on Americans to crack down on hate speech
The head of France’s largest Jewish organization called on Americans to combat online hate speech, in an advertisement in The New York Times.
In the advertisement in Monday’s paper, titled “An appeal to our American Friends,” Roger Cukierman, who heads the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions, an umbrella group, wrote that following the deaths of four of his co-religionists in a terrorist attack in Paris in January, “French Jews fear for their safety, their integrity, their dignity, and their future.”
This is widely known in the United States and many have asked how they can help, he continued, asserting that the best way to do so would be to “help us defuse the hate where it moves most freely – on the Internet.”
“On the Internet, anti-Semitic ravings, rooted in centuries old myths such as the rich Jew and the powerful Jew go unchecked,” he wrote, averring that both resentment of Jews and jihadism thrive online.
Only several clicks on Google can bring one to pages full of conspiracy theories, including ones linking Jews to the 9/11 attacks and old canards like The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which can be “liked” with impunity, he said.
Given that the hosts of much of this content are American firms that are subject to American law, France’s friends here must “convince them to set a limit to this swarm of hate.”
Forensics show Argentine prosecutor Nisman was murdered, family says
Independent forensic tests on the body of the Argentine state prosecutor, found days after he accused President Cristina Fernandez of plotting to cover up Iran's alleged role in a 1994 bombing, indicate that he was murdered, his ex-wife said on Thursday.
Argentine authorities have not released full results of the autopsy of Alberto Nisman, found in a pool of blood with a bullet to the head on Jan. 18. The few forensic details that have been made public so far by prosecutor's office have suggested suicide, though no official ruling has been made.
"Nisman didn't have an accident. He didn't commit suicide. They murdered him," Nisman's former wife Sandra Arroyo Salgado told a news conference, without giving any further details on who killed the 52-year-old and father of their two children.
Earlier on Thursday, Arroyo Salgado, who is a judge, deposited the forensic evidence behind her allegations at the state prosecutors' office in Buenos Aires. She did not give details of the findings to journalists.
She said a separate autopsy had not been carried out and the team's conclusions were based on photographs, videos taken during the autopsy as well as additional tests run in the morgue.
Game-Changing Israeli PR: How to Make Things Personal
In essence, Israel does not take the fight to the other team in terms of reputation management. Along the lines of what Professor Eytan Gilboa told Arutz Sheva earlier this week, Israel needs to be on offense as much if not more so than it is on defense when it comes to its public image.
Kapoano gives some hypothetical examples on the issue of the Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria, though he does not intend to say these are necessarily the best pivot points for the debate.
He wonders why Israel does not attack Palestinian Authority (PA) laws that prohibit land and property sales to Jewish Israelis, framing that to someone living in the United States to leave them wondering, “wouldn’t that be terrible to not be able to move there because of your religion?"
Mr. Kapoano has tried to instill a lot of these points as the founder and CEO of CTC Media, which specializes in digital brand and reputation management for non-profit causes. They focus on a number of platforms, including social media, as conduits for “changing the conversation.”
The biggest point of importance for Kapoano is that Israel needs to understand that when you frame your debate as one of a government against individuals, the government will never have the upper hand in terms of public opinion.
It’s critical to remind people this is a dispute between two communities; two groups of individuals, he says. Even more importantly, foreign audiences have to be informed that Israelis have their grievances, too.
American Campuses: Cause For Alarm?
A student at the University of Ohio recalls the heated moments when she and three of her classmates were arrested last September while protesting the fiercely anti-Israel rhetoric of a fellow student, the president of the Student Senate.
A young woman at the University of New Mexico worries about grade reprisals from professors who routinely denounce the Jewish state and don’t like her pro-Israel views.
Other students recall the appearance of swastikas on a Jewish fraternity house (at Emory University last fall), fake eviction notices slipped under the dorm-room doors of Jewish peers (at New York University last spring), and the refusal of some Palestinian students to engage in any sort of dialogue with pro-Israel classmates.
Those and other scenes make up the meat of a new documentary, “Crossing the Line 2: The New Face of Anti-Semitism on Campus,” screened at a special showing last week at the 92nd Street Y. Presented by Jerusalem U, a pro-Israel group that seeks to promote Jewish education and identity through film, the documentary was followed by a panel discussion that included Eric Fingerhut, president and CEO of Hillel International, and three of the students who appear in the work.
The film is aimed at “sounding the alarm within the Jewish community,” said Raphael Shore, founder and CEO of Jerusalem U. But while that alarm is shared by many in the Jewish community, the view of what constitutes anti-Semitism and of how to approach it differs greatly among pro-Israel activists.
Charges dropped against pro-Israel Ohio U. students
You may recall our extensive coverage of the Ohio University incident in which the student Senate President Meghan Marzec conducted an anti-Israel “blood bucket challenge” hijacking the Ice Bucket Challenge designed to raise funds for ALS research.
Pro-Israel students then demonstrated during a student Senate meeting and were arrested at the behest of Marzec.
In fact, one student, Becky Sebo, was arrested while reading a Legal Insurrection blog post out loud!
Four students were arrested and charged with disrupting a public meeting, and those charges were pursued by prosecutors for months.
I just received word from Sebo that all charges have been dropped.
"Censoring Palestine at the University: Free Speech and Academic Freedom at a Crossroads"
The academic gatekeepers who cry “Islamophobia” in an effort to prevent meaningful discourse on the role of religion in the worlds conflicts are having a conference tomorrow at UC Berkeley. The same groups that decry "normalization" and dialog - the same groups that shout down speakers they disagree with will be discussing "censorship".
"Censoring Palestine at the University: Free Speech and Academic Freedom at a Crossroads" is sponsored by American Muslims for Palestine, Council on American Islamic Relations-SF Bay Area, Jewish Voice for Peace-Bay Area Chapter, Students for Justice in Palestine-Berkeley and the Muslim Students Association.
Stop Connecting Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism With Islamophobia
Many practitioners of Islam reject Jewish sovereignty and consider Jews (and Christians) to be dhimmis – treated as second-class citizens. Arabism or Arab nationalism reject Zionism. This is the harsh reality. Within mainstream Judaism, there is no such analogue.
But the media – especially the liberal mainstream media – is reflexively prone to link anti-Semitism with ”Islamophobia,” as if the two sprang from the same womb.
The bald facts, however, scream otherwise. The vast majority of violence directed against Jews worldwide – and nowadays most prevalent in tolerant, liberal Europe – is being committed by Muslims who loudly proclaim and invoke their faith.
Of course, radical Muslims kill more Muslims than anyone else in their ongoing internal religious war, but the bar is set so low by the media, Europe, UN, NGOs, and the Obama Administration, that no one cares much unless they can use it to criticize Israel and by extension their treatment of Palestinian Arabs. But when was the last time a major Muslim leader or politician stood up and pronounced that this Muslim behavior of terrorism, hatred, and violence against “infidels” and dhimmis, is just plain wrong, detrimental and against Islamic law?
There is no automatic causal relationship or moral equivalence between anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. Europe seems to have little difficulty identifying the source of anti-Semitism when it emanates from right-wing extremists. But when it oozes forth from a segment of Muslim society, the verbal gymnastics, double-talk, and appeasement nonesense are regurgitated to excuse and conflate and deflect from the truth.
And the ultimate truth that the media and increasingly spineless West are loathe to admit is that our Judeo-Christian values and culture are being fatally threatened by an increasingly large and radicalized Islamic population that is engaged in a holy war, a global jihad, against us, in their drive to establish a world-wide caliphate.
Israeli Apartheid Week conceived in Tehran (#IsraeliApartheidWeek)
We are in the midst of “Israel Apartheid Week.” In the U.S. it lasts from February 26-March 12 — which is more than one week, but anti-Israel groups always take liberties with terminology and numbers.
On campuses we will see mock “Apartheid Walls” (referring to the Israeli security barrier); but we will not see any mock suicide bombers, whose relentless self-detonation killed 452 Israeli civilians in 2002 leading to construction of the barrier (a wall in some places, but mostly fencing).
Student groups like Students for Justice in Palestine, will chant and scream slogans like “From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be Free.” I believe them when they say that. The BDS movement is about the destruction of Israel, even if some naive supporters think otherwise.
Guess who is a big, big fan of Israel Apartheid Week?
None other than the Supreme Leader of Iran, that beacon of freedom and justice for all, Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei, who tweeted this greeting:
New Israel Fund Does Not Belong in the Jewish Community
If there were any doubts where the George Soros-sponsored New Israel Fund stood on Jewish lives, they were eviscerated in a Federal District Court in Manhattan on February 19. Ten American-Jewish families brought suit against the Palestinian Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority for inciting violence during the Second Intifada that maimed or killed their loved ones.
An all African-American jury agreed with Nitsana Darshan Leitner, the brilliant and heroic lawyer who represented the families and who argued that the Palestinian organizations had caused the terrorism that resulted in injury and death. The jury decided that Jewish blood is not cheap, and awarded the plaintiffs $655.5 million.
What was hailed as an important measure of justice and closure throughout Jewish communities long accustomed to seeing Palestinian terrorists shed Jewish blood with impunity was marred by the New Israel Fund’s support for the defendants.
Michael Sfard, a human rights attorney from Israel, testified as an expert witness for the PLO. Mr. Sfard has represented a number of organizations funded by the New Israel Fund.
As attorney Darshan-Leitner so well put it, “In a state of conflict, you can’t give both sides equal rights. Sometimes it comes to a situation of either them or us. If he comes to defend them, he certainly hurts us.”
JCPA e-book on Operation Protective Edge
The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) has produced an interesting e-book about last summer’s conflict between Hamas and Israel which includes a lot of useful information, graphics and videos.
In the overview, under the sub-heading ‘The War’s Other Victim: The Truth’ contributor Hirsh Goodman writes:
“Operation Protective Edge escalated into 50 days of conflict during which Hamas and other groups fired 4,258 rockets and countless mortar rounds into Israel. Israel responded with 5,226 air strikes and a limited ground campaign. The actual death count in Gaza is still an open question, but has been put at over 2,100 combatants and civilians. Israel suffered 74 dead. Had the Iron Dome system not intercepted 735 rockets fired from Gaza and calculated to be on trajectories toward densely populated areas, the Israeli casualty count would have been incalculably higher.
The dead and wounded, however, were not the only casualties of this war. Truth was another.
More information on Gaza casualties ignored by the BBC
The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Centre recently published another report in the framework of its ongoing investigation into casualties in the Gaza Strip during Operation Protective Edge which can be found here.
The report sums up the Centre’s findings to date as follows:
“The project’s goal is to determine which of the fatalities were affiliated with terrorist organizations and which were non-involved citizens, and to examine the ratio between them. The findings of our investigation so far (based on an examination of approximately 61% of the names of the dead) suggest that fatalities affiliated with terrorist organizations constitute approximately 48.7% of the names that have been identified, and non-involved civilians constitute approximately 51.3%. This ratio may vary in the future.”
The BBC's very own unintended Purim spiel
The upsurge in anti-semitism in the UK in the last 3 years has been caused almost entirely by obsessive anti-Israel media coverage during conflicts with Gaza; the resulting anti-semitic attacks are almost exclusively carried out by Muslims (and sometimes their leftist allies), whipped into a frenzy over lies of Israeli war crimes.
The BBC is, more than any other British institution, responsible for this demonization of the Jewish state. Perhaps it was therefore appropriate for Purim that BBC Radio 4 ran a programme this evening about rising antisemitism in the UK where the role of the BBC's own incitement was ignored, and the blame was placed on ... 'right wing extremists'. While there are certainly still active Nazi type groups who use social media to target Jews, this pales into insignificance compared to Muslim anti-semitism, but the BBC did an incredible job of covering this up. After 20 of the 30 minute programme spent talking about right-wing extremists they interviewed Jewish MP Lee Scott whose life was threatened 'by two men' because of his perceived pro-Israel stance. No mention that the men were Muslims and although Muslim antisemitism was then very briefly mentioned, the programme took pains to state that 'there were actually more Islamaphobic attacks in Britain than there were antisemitic attacks'. This is highly misleading because a) the Muslim community is over ten times larger; and b) Most reported Islamaphobic attacks - in contrast to those against Jews - are simply social media postings reported to the fraudulent website Tell Mama. Jews are actually sixteen many times more likely to suffer an attack because of their religion than Muslims.
BBC continues to mainstream antisemitic discourse on its discussion boards
On March 3rd the BBC News website decided to open its article titled “Netanyahu’s ‘chutzpah’ rocks Capitol and riles Obama” to comments from the public – with 338 responses. The next day an additional and related article headlined “Obama says Netanyahu’s Iran speech contains ‘nothing new’” was also opened to the public and it garnered 642 comments.
Even after moderation per the “house rules” which urge commenters to “keep your contributions civil, tasteful and relevant”, the comments sections of those two articles were replete with postings which were irrelevant to the topic of the two articles. Many of the comments were defamatory, promoted inaccurate information and propagated Nazi analogies along with tropes such as the ‘apartheid’ trope, the ‘Jewish lobby’ trope, the ‘dual loyalty’ trope and the ‘Jewish power’ trope. Below are just a few examples.
Paris Undercover Reporter: ‘I’m Asked if I Was Scared. The Truth is I Was’
The curses, the spitting, the threats, and the lynch mob that was avoided. The video, documenting me – an NRG reporter with a kippah on his head on the streets of Paris, has garnered millions of views on YouTube, and has raised an issue that Europe needs to deal with: Should Jews be scared?
All hell broke loose after we published the footage: “10 Hours of Walking in Paris as a Jew” on our website, Facebook, and YouTube. Besides the millions of views, there have been reactions from senior officials from around the world and in Israel, and mainly, the raising of a painful point for the world community: it is scary to be a Jew in France.
The concept was simple: walk the streets of Paris with a kippah and tzitzit, a tiny microphone, and a hidden camera. The results: spitting, curses, and threats. The global media didn’t know what to do with this. How is it possible that a Jew would garner such reactions in the capital of France?
MEMRI: Pakistani Urdu Weekly Promotes Holocaust Denial: 'Jews Have Been Taking Full Advantages By Howling About The Holocaust'
Following are excerpts from an article in Zarb-e-Momin (Strike of the Faithful Muslim), an Urdu-language jihadist weekly openly sold across Pakistan. Zarb-e-Momin, which began publishing in the early 1990s, has been linked to the Al-Rashid Trust, a banned charity connected to Al-Qaeda and other jihadist organizations in Pakistan.
The article, titled "Who is tolerant?" written by Waqar Ahmed (who is possibly based in Australia), questions the Holocaust and accuses Jews of promoting it for their advantage. The beginning the article, which is not included below, features a fictional scenario in which a visiting Muslim is told by a local not to talk about the Holocaust.
Following are excerpts from the article, as translated from Urdu:
"On The One Hand, Jews Beat The Drum Of Freedom Of Expression, But On The Other Hand, They Do Not Let Any Occasion Pass To Strangle Truth With Their Iron Hands"
Report: Man selling Nazi-made soap made of Jewish Holocaust victims' remains
Dutch police have launched an investigation into a northern Dutch trader who claims to be selling soap made by the Nazis that is made from the remains of Jews killed in the Holocaust, according to the Dutch newspaper De Telegraag.
The soap, known as "RIF soap" or popularly as Jew soap, was reportedly made during WWII by the Nazis from human remains, and was being sold online for 199 Euros.
Historian Arthur Graaf, who spoke to De Telegraag, said the seller was offering other products from the Holocaust era such as dentures, toothbrushes and glasses, which he took from the vicinity of the Westerbork concentration camp.
Graff expressed great anger at the theft of the Holocaust-era Jewish belongings and said that any objects found in the vicinity of the camp automatically belong to the camps Memorial Center.
New Budapest Holocaust museum omits culpability of Hungarians
Hungarian Jewish leaders are criticizing a new Holocaust museum under construction in Budapest for omitting the culpability of Hungarians in the attempted genocide of the Jews.
The museum in Budapest, called House of Fates, is nearly complete, but the planned exhibition focuses only on the last period of the Holocaust in Hungary, starting in 1944, when the ghettoization and deportation of over 500,000 Hungarian Jews was already complete. It fails to deal with the earlier persecution against Hungarian Jews, starting with the passage of anti-Jewish laws in the 1920s, local Jewish community leaders and historians complained. Community leaders said they were not consulted about the planned exhibition.
Judit Molnar, a well-known Hungarian Holocaust historian, slammed the museum for not explicitly mentioning the responsibility of Hungarian authorities in the killing of Hungarian Jews during World War II.
Holocaust memoir details unlikely survival in wilderness
In her Holocaust memoir, Burger does not immediately confront the reader with the time when her choices were cold, disease and hunger in the forest; or brutality, cold, disease and hunger in the ghetto. Instead, she opens with her father carrying her on his shoulders to Sabbath services on a winter day before World War II. Afterward, the two walk home hand-in-hand.
“The journey culminated in the arms of my mother, Sarah, who would pick me up and spin me around…”
Paula’s Window: Papa, the Bielski Partisans and a Life Unexpected is a story of survival, but also of faith in family, compassion and the possibility of beauty.
Hollywood’s version of Burger’s experience was shown in the 2008 move Defiance. Daniel Craig stars as Tuvia Bielski, one of four Jewish brothers who led attacks on the Nazis from forests along the Polish-Belorusian border that also were hideouts for fighters and their families. In a forward to Burger’s book, Tuvia Bielski’s son Robert writes of an “unbreakable bond” uniting survivors and their families.
Did you know Louis Armstrong wore a Star of David?
Louis Armstrong, the famous Jazz musician, wore a Star of David throughout most of his adult life.
He did so to honor his childhood neighbors, the Karnofsky family.
“I was only seven years old but I could easily see the ungodly treatment that the White Folks were handing the poor Jewish family whom I worked for… They were always warm and kind to me, which was very noticeable to me — just a kid who could use a little word of kindness.” - Louis Armstrong, 1969
Both Armstrong and the Karnofskys lived in Storyville, New Orleans. Storyville was considered a poor and violent neighborhood, and was commonly referred to as “The Battlefield.”
Despite having many problems of their own, the Karnofskys gave Armstrong a job, meals, and even lent him money to buy his first musical instrument. (h/t Garbanzo Annex)
Britain’s Prince William Meets Israeli Aid Workers in Japan While Visiting Earthquake Disaster Sites
Britain’s Prince William met with relief staff from the Israeli humanitarian group IsraAID while in Japan this week visiting areas hit by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the UK’s Jewish Chronicle reported on Wednesday.
Yotam Polizer, the Asia regional director of IsraAID, said meeting the British royal made his team feel “privileged and humbled.”
“His visit gave us a new wave of hope for a quick recovery,” he said, according to the report. “It was truly a great honor and we all were grateful that Prince William brought attention to the determination and continued recovery of those affected by this disaster, and the needs of the many for whom the scars are still fresh.”
Syrian boy who lost leg in war fitted with prosthesis in Israel
A 13-year-old Syrian boy who was seriously injured by a mortar in Quneitra three months ago as a result of the ongoing civil war in his home country was brought to Israel for surgery and fitted with a prosthetic leg that will allow him to walk again.
The boy, who dreams of playing soccer and basketball and finishing high school, lost his left leg below the knee and was gravely injured by shrapnel in his right thigh. He was brought to Rambam Hospital in Haifa due to limited treatment options in Quneitra.
At first, doctors fought for his life as he suffered from serious infections. His mother was permitted to stay by his side as he underwent a series of surgeries.
The young boy also had the support of the hospital's pediatric surgery staff as well as that of many Israeli Arab families who helped both him and his mother.
Paypal to acquire Israeli cybersec firm CyActive
CyActive, an Israeli start-up that says its technology can disable viruses before they are even created, is being acquired by international payments firm Paypal. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but sources said that the deal was worth at least $60 million.
This will be PayPal’s second acquisition in Israel. In 2008, the company bought out financial fraud monitoring company FraudSciences for $169 million.
The CyActive buyout sum is a significant one for a company that is barely a year old, and which already has substantial numbers of customers for its security technology.
CyActive’s technology takes advantage of what CEO Liran Tancman calls “laziness” on the part of hackers. “Much of the code found in even major attacks is reused over and over again in new attacks,” Tancman said. “There has actually never been a hack attack that did not draw substantially on components that were already in existence.”
Israel uses military expertise to join commercial space race
Israel is embarking on a five-year mission to stake its claim on a crowded new frontier, the $250 billion-a-year commercial space market.
Using the expertise of a defense industry that created technology such as the Iron Dome missile interceptor, Israel plans to move beyond its current focus on spy and military communications satellites into producing civilian devices, some small enough to fit in a hand.
"The idea was that we have a well-developed space infrastructure for our defense needs, and without a big financial investment, we can use it to grab a few percentage points of the commercial market as well," said Issac Ben-Israel, chairman of the Israel Space Agency.
Ben-Israel hopes the country will capture at least a 3 percent market share, but it faces competition from global technology giants looking for new markets and industries. Some firms are already pushing the boundaries of technology, such as Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson's project to take tourists into space for $250,000 a ticket. (h/t Zvi)
IDF Blog: Modern Day Soldier: Using Google Glass-like Technology For Real-Time Warfare
Imagine being in the heat of battle, you are exhausted, fatigued and running on adrenaline. A few seconds before a terrorist opens fire, you are told over the radio to take cover and prepare. This is the development of military-like “Google Glasses”, which will provide real-time information from combat soldiers in battle to their commanders.
The IDF continues to ambitiously develop and harness technology of the twenty first century with the goal of preventing harm to combat soldiers. The IDF’s Development Branch, which is in charge of the development of forthcoming technology in the military, has been at the forefront of technology like the IDF’s “Google Glass” and the use of applications. Recently, this branch has been inspired from previous operations to advance technology that provides real-time information on the battlefield in order to prevent harm to the soldiers.
“After Operation Protective Edge, there became a greater understanding that mobility is a significant factor in combat,” said Capt. Rotem, Head of Development Branch. “One of the things we’re working on is a change in the perception of mobility within the development branch of the IDF. In the coming year we will learn how to develop and utilize Android apps, and enter the realm of multi-faceted technology”.
Take a Look 'Beneath the Helmet' of an IDF Recruit
Taking part at the annual AIPAC conference in Washington DC were those behind a unique film, which gives a first person view from the eyes of a fresh IDF recruit.
"Beneath the Helmet" is the work of co-producer David Coleman and First Lt. Eden Adler who plays a key role in the film, and Arutz Sheva got the chance to speak with both of them at the conference.
The movie was launched four months ago, and now the two are promoting the film in the US, travelling primarily through college campuses to gain awareness for the film.
"The idea of the movie is to show the world the soldiers beneath the helmet, who they are, what they stand for and why they do what they have to do," explained Coleman.
March of Glory: Can You Endure the Beret March?
IDF infantry soldiers in the Nahal Brigade earned their stripes this week in a grueling masa kumta, a beret march pushing their endurance and will to the limits before completing their training and officially graduating from being recruits to full-fledged soldiers of the Jewish state.
Taking part in the march was Randy Swartz from Boston, who was capping off a journey that saw him immigrate to Israel and devote himself to defending the Jewish homeland.
The overnight march of 50 kilometers (over 30 miles) took the soldiers from the unit's base to Masada, the last holdout of the last Jewish state before the Romans completed their occupation and expelled most of the Jews nearly 2,000 years ago.
"You keep your eye on the prize, on the goal of finishing and the will to do it, and the feet, they just go automatic," Swartz said, noting on the "fighting spirit" required by the feat.
He added "when you came to visit Israel as a little kid you saw the soldiers, you wanted to be them and you wanted to emulate them, and finally it's happening."
Purim 2015 in the IDF
Purim is a very special occasion that calls for a special celebration. Watch our soldiers take center stage in this fun video. Breakdance, beatbox and cool costumes are just some of the surprises awaiting. Happy holiday from the IDF!


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