Sunday, February 19, 2017

From Ian:

The case of disappearing support
This is precisely why the Arab world downplayed the meeting and its results, as if Trump's new approach to regional issues had nothing to do with the Arab nations and perhaps even served their purposes. A new approach to regional issues, one that differs from that of President Barack Obama, would most likely be in line with Egypt's interests, as Cairo has had enough of the criticism Washington has leveled at it since President Mohammed Morsi's ouster, as well as with Saudi Arabia's interests, as Riyadh had demanded a tougher American stance against Iran.
The Arab world has apparently turned its back on the Palestinian issue, which nevertheless still preoccupies the Arab public and could always be used as a means to blow off the steam of criticism usually aimed at Arab regimes or the West. However, the days when Arab countries were willing to indiscriminately sacrifice their interests for the Palestinian cause are gone. Moreover, the Palestinians themselves are divided between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, and the latter is reluctant to embrace a realistic approach that could promote its interests.
In the absence of support from Arab nations, Europe has stepped up to criticize Trump's actions, as they stand to undermine the European endeavor to play any role in Middle East politics. Nevertheless, with the European Union fraying at the seams, Europe is not a significant factor.
Thus, the Palestinians must now re-evaluate their policy. Hamas has already chosen its path by electing hard-liner Yahya Sinwar, a senior member of Hamas' military wing in Gaza, as its leader in the enclave. The Palestinian Authority, on the other hand, could take its chances and resume the peace talks with Israel, as such steps have proven as the best way to move forward. However, if its leaders continue to idle, they may find the have missed their chance.
Haley’s Comet
"A star is born is our reaction to the first press briefing by President Trump's new ambassador at the United Nations...
The ambassador had just come from the regular monthly Security Council on Middle East issues. She said it was her first such meeting, and 'it was a bit strange.' The Security Council, she said, is supposed to discuss how to maintain international peace and security. But the meeting, she said, was not about Hezbollah's illegal buildup of rockets in Lebanon, it was not about the money and weapons Iran provides to terrorists, it was not how we defeat ISIS, it was not how we hold Beshar al-Assad accountable for the slaughter of thousands of civilians.
'No,' she said, 'instead the meeting focused on criticizing Israel, the one true democracy in the Middle East. I am new around here, but I understand that's how the Council has operated month after month for decades. I am here to say the United States will not turn a blind eye to this anymore. I am here to underscore to the ironclad support of the United States for Israel. I am here to emphasize that the United States is determined to stand up to the U.N.'s anti-Israel bias.'
The ambassador made clear that the Trump administration will not support the kind of resolution from which the Obama administration's ambassador - Samantha Power - shamefully abstained, though Mrs. Haley was too polite to name the humiliated Ms. Power...
The ambassador warned that it is 'the U.N.'s anti-Israel bias that is long overdue for change,' and said America will not hesitate to speak out in defense of its friend in Israel...She has the principles of a Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the grit of a John Bolton, and the star power of a Jeane Kirkpatrick, and in her first press briefing she certainly made her point."
Rubio questions David Friedman at ambassador to Israel hearing




Report Benjamin Netanyahu rejected peace plan proposed by Kerry at secret 2016 meeting
Former US secretary of state John Kerry presented a proposal on a regional approach to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a secret convening in the southern Jordanian town of Aqaba in early 2016, Haaretz reported on Sunday.
Kerry garnered Jordanian and Egyptian backing for the plan, which included two sticking points for Israel - Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state and the resumption of direct talks between the sides - among the principles outlining a path to a comprehensive peace deal, according to the report citing former senior Obama administration officials.
Netanyahu rejected Kerry's plan, allegedly citing the difficulties he would face to gain approval by the Israeli government's right-wing coalition.
Jordanian King Abudllah II and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi were also at the summit in Aqaba and met separately with Kerry.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was not present at the meeting in Aqaba, but he was reportedly informed of it by Kerry.
Netanyahu says peace summit with Sissi, Abdullah was his idea
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly confirmed Sunday that he attended a secret summit with Arab leaders for a regional peace push, but said he and not then-US secretary of state John Kerry was the initiator of the meeting.
The revelations over the summit, the abortive peace push and the domestic political fallout from the initiative rippled through the Knesset Sunday morning, with lawmakers from the left and right weighing in.
Netanyahu told Likud ministers he was the one to initiate the meeting, which was attended by the prime minister, Kerry, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi and Jordan’s King Abdullah, on February 21, 2016, according to Haaretz, which was the first to report on the summit’s existence.
Netanyahu ultimately expressed doubts over Kerry’s plan and presented his own, which would involve Gulf states as well, and the initiative never got off the ground.
The revelations came days after Netanyahu called for such an initiative at his first meeting with US President Donald Trump.
Ron Prosor: Israel Welcomes the Return of the U.S. Superpower Under Donald Trump
When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met President Donald Trump at the White House they looked to melt the ice that had formed under the previous administration. They set out to put the trust and intimacy back into the relationship between Israel and the U.S., without surprises or betrayals.
Netanyahu was the fourth foreign leader to visit the new president, after only the U.K.’s Theresa May, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Canadian neighbour Justin Trudeau. The president had warm words for Netanyahu personally and for the “unbreakable bond with our cherished ally, Israel.” Obama’s overtures to the Middle East started with his Cairo Speech, reaching out to the Muslim world, and ended with a U.N. Security Council Resolution opposed to settlement building, with a bad deal with Iran in the middle. In contrast, Trump seems to be hugging America’s traditional allies close.
On three key issues Trump and Netanyahu see eye to eye: the fight against radical Islamist terror, the threat of Iran, and Israel’s importance as a strategic asset for the U.S. in the Middle East. These provide building blocks to recalibrate and reaffirm the U.S.-Israel alliance and, with renewed warmth, they present historic opportunities.
Senior White House Officials Support Bolton To Replace Flynn
Senior White House officials and members of the National Security Council are pushing former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton as a replacement for ousted national security adviser Michael Flynn, according to multiple sources in and out of the White House who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon.
Among Bolton's most vocal supporters are senior administration officials loyal to Flynn and who are upset at the general's firing. Multiple sources described an effort by these Flynn loyalists to ensure that Bolton is selected as his replacement.
The selection of Bolton as the next national security adviser would empower Flynn's allies still in the White House and send a message that his national security vision is represented within the Trump administration. Bolton is also favored by White House staffers who are opposed to the selection of any candidate who criticized President Trump during the 2016 campaign.
President Donald Trump has not settled on a final selection yet and is also eyeing retired Army Gen. Keith Kellogg, who has been acting national security adviser since Flynn's departure, as well as other candidates.
"There's a strong inclination in the NSC towards the kind of experienced leadership Bolton would represent," said one current official, who requested anonymity to speak freely about the situation. "He knows the ins and outs of D.C. but he's not an establishment, Never Trump type. There's also a lot of respect for General Kellogg and KT McFarland, both of whom have really stepped up under challenging circumstances."
Bolton, a senior figure in the George W. Bush administration, is well versed in the intricacies of government and would give the White House credibility at a time when the administration is under criticism.
US Rep. Grothman: Trump right to block Palestine funds
As the media obsess about President Donald Trump’s cabinet picks, other important news has not gotten the attention it deserves.
President Trump recently halted the transfer of $221 million to Palestine. I applaud this action.
The payment was quietly approved by President Barack Obama during his final days in office. These funds are American taxpayer dollars that were being sent to support various Palestinian political activities, as well as to assist in ensuring that any future Palestinian state would have a functional government.
Since the payment was done in such a secretive manner and Congress was not told about it until the morning of the inauguration, President Trump has ordered the State Department to freeze and review the payment.
Israel is our anchor in the Middle East. During both his terms, President Obama was openly hostile to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel. It is vitally important that we reverse course and support our key ally in an otherwise unstable, politically fragile region.
In Munich, Liberman calls for coalition of ‘moderates’ against Iran
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman warned of Iran’s threat to the Middle East and called for “moderate” states, including Saudi Arabia, to stand together with Israel in opposing Tehran.
“For the first time since 1948, to the moderate Arab world, the Sunni world, the biggest threat for them is not Israel, not Zionists and not Jews, but Iran and Iranian proxies,” Liberman said Sunday.
Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, the defense minister referred specifically to Saudi Arabia, whose minister remained in the room for Liberman’s speech, as one of the “moderate” countries threatened by Iran.
Liberman highlighted Iran’s nuclear ambitions, ballistic missile program and funding of terror groups across the Middle East.
The defense minister repeated the message that he gave on Friday to new US Secretary of Defense James Mattis, saying the three major threats to the Middle East were “Iran, Iran and Iran.”
Saudi Arabia, Israel present de facto united front against Iran
Saudi Arabia and Israel both called on Sunday for a new push against Iran, signaling a growing alignment in their interests, while US lawmakers promised to seek new sanctions on the Shi'ite Muslim power.
Turkey also joined the de facto united front against Tehran as Saudi and Israeli ministers rejected an appeal from Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif for Sunni Gulf Arab states to work with Tehran to reduce violence across the region.
While Saudi Arabia remains historically at odds with Israel, their ministers demanded at the Munich Security Conference that Tehran be punished for propping up the Syrian government, developing ballistic missiles and funding separatists in Yemen.
International sanctions on Iran were lifted a year ago under a nuclear deal with world powers, but Republican senators said at the conference they would press for new U.S. measures over the missiles issue and Tehran's actions to "destabilize" the Middle East.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir called Tehran the main sponsor of global terrorism and a destabilizing force in the Middle East.
Praising Trump, Saudi FM urges progress toward Israeli-Arab peace
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister said he is optimistic that Arabs and Israelis can reach a peace deal in 2017.
Speaking four days after US President Donald Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at a White House press conference about the possibilities of a regional peace agreement, Adel al-Jubeir told delegates at the Munich Security Conference on Sunday that the contours of an Israeli-Palestinian accord were clear, and that Saudi Arabia and other Arab states would work to bring it to fruition.
“I believe progress can be made in the Arab Israel conflict, if there is a will to do so,” he said. “We know what the settlement looks like, if there is just the political will to do so. And my country stands ready with other Arab countries to work to see how we can promote that.”
He said the new US administration made him optimistic that this and other regional challenges could be resolved.
The future of Egyptian-Israeli relations: Cairo more committed to peace than normalization
According to a recent report in the British Telegraph, Israel withdrew its ambassador from Cairo quietly some time ago due to security concerns. Over the many years of exchanging diplomatic missions, while Egyptian diplomatic missions have always enjoyed their stays in Tel Aviv, security concerns have regularly curtailed the Israeli diplomatic missions’ movement in Cairo.
Commenting on the Palestinian rhetoric against Israel, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson stated before his senate confirmation hearing, “Sometimes it takes another generation that’s not carrying all that baggage of the past.”
Three decades ago, president Anwar Sadat stated in his Knesset speech that there was a “psychological barrier [between Egyptians and Israelis] that constituted 70% of the problem.”
Since that speech, the Egyptian side had been hindering any possibility of breaking the psychological barrier president Sadat spoke of in 1977.
Taking a second look at Egyptian-Israeli relations with the upcoming 38th anniversary of the peace treaty between the two countries, one of the main questions that bewilders observers is why peace has yet to be realized between the two peoples despite four decades since the end of the 1973 war.
The question becomes more puzzling considering the high level of security and intelligence cooperation between the two countries with regard to the common security threats they face in Sinai.
Netanyahu leaves Sunday for historic visits to Singapore, Australia
Fresh off visits to Washington last week and the week before to London, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will fly to Singapore on Sunday afternoon, and from there to Australia on Tuesday, for the first visit by an Israeli prime minister to those countries.
Dave Sharma, Australia’s ambassador to Israel, called the visit to his country “massively significant” and “historic.”
“We have an incredibly close relationship,” Sharma said in an interview with The Jerusalem Post. “So we attach a great deal of significance to having an Israeli prime minister visit, spend time with the Australian political leadership, with the Jewish community and give Israel’s perspective on world affairs. There is a lot of symbolic and historic significance attached to this visit.”
Netanyahu is well aware of the importance of this visit to the Australian government, which was miffed by the cancellation last year of a planned trip by President Reuven Rivlin who decided at the last minute to travel to Russia instead.
Australian FM Julie Bishop in Israel
Netanyahu and then-foreign minister Avigdor Liberman also canceled separate visits in 2014, and another cancellation would have insulted the Australian government, described by one senior Israeli diplomatic official as arguably the friendliest government toward Israel in the world.
Netanyahu coming to Australia, anti-Semitic Aussies protest
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to jet into Australia on Tuesday for the first-ever visit by an Israeli prime minister to the country.
Dave Sharma, Australia’s ambassador to Israel, called the visit to his country “massively significant” and “historic.”
“We have an incredibly close relationship,” Sharma said in an interview with The Jerusalem Post.
“So we attach a great deal of significance to having an Israeli prime minister visit, spend time with the Australian political leadership, with the Jewish community and give Israel’s perspective on world affairs. There is a lot of symbolic and historic significance attached to this visit.”
But some people don’t share the same positive sentiments.
According to the Australian newspaper The Age, Prime Minister Netanyahu’s plans to visit Australia has set off a maelstrom with a bunch of 60 rascist, bigoted, anti-Semites including businesswoman Janet Holmes à Court, former Federal Court judge Murray Wilcox, retired Anglican bishop George Browning and Harry Potter actress Miriam Margolyes protesting his visit.
Report: Israel warns Hezbollah of 'colossal retaliation' if attacked
Israel over the weekend warned the Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah that any attack it may launch on it, be it from its bases in Lebanon or those in Syria, will meet a "colossal military retaliation," the London-based Arabic newspaper Al-Hayat reported Sunday.
According to the report, the warning was conveyed to Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah directly via a third-party Arab official.
Nasrallah was reportedly warned that in the era of the Trump administration, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would be able to more easily garner the support of moderate countries in the region -- most likely in the form of tacit consent -- in the event Israel would have to mount a forceful counterattack against Hezbollah.
On Thursday, Nasrallah threatened to launch missiles at the Negev Nuclear Research Center in Dimona in southern Israel in the case of future hostilities with Israel.
"The enemy's leadership is mistaken if it thinks it knows everything; we always have surprises," he said.
Hezbollah said to have obtained ‘game-changing’ anti-ship missiles
The Lebanese terror group Hezbollah has obtained advanced Russian-made anti-ship missiles, potentially threatening Israeli gas fields in the Mediterranean Sea and the Israeli Navy’s ability to operate in the area, according to a report published Sunday.
Hezbollah’s possession of the Yakhont missiles was revealed by unnamed Western intelligence officials over the weekend at the Munich Security Conference, where world leaders and defense ministers are meeting to discuss major security issues, according to a report in the Hebrew daily Yedioth Ahronoth. The report did not reveal in what forum the revelations were made.
If true, Hezbollah’s possession of the missiles would represent a serious threat to Israeli interests in the Mediterranean; endangering both Israeli commercial vessels sailing in shipping lanes off the Lebanese coast and the ability of Israeli Navy ships to operate in and around Lebanese waters.
Most significantly, the missiles would give Hezbollah the ability to strike Israel’s gas production platforms in the Mediterranean, a threat Israel reportedly intends to counter by installing maritime versions of the Iron Dome missile defense system on naval vessels as part of the Israeli Navy’s efforts to secure the country’s natural gas fields.
2 Palestinian teens accused in West Bank shootings
Two Palestinian teens suspected of carrying out shooting attacks at passing cars in the central West Bank were arrested last month, the Shin Bet security service said Sunday.
The two suspects, both 17 and from the Palestinian village of Deir Abu Mash’al west of Ramallah, were arrested hours after allegedly shooting at Israeli cars on January 27, according to the security agency.
The arrests were carried out together with the Israel Defense Forces and police and were gagged until the Sunday announcement.
The Shin Bet did not say when the two were expected to be officially charged. A spokesperson said the results of the investigations had been handed over to the military prosecution.
The pair were accused of shooting at cars near the West Bank settlement of Halamish, outside Ramallah, on November 14, and January 27, as well as unspecified “additional attacks.”
Hamas condemns 6 ‘informants for Israel’ to death by hanging
Six Gazans were condemned to be hanged over charges they informed for Israel, two Hamas-run military courts ruled Sunday.
Three men were sentenced to hang by the permanent military court and death sentences for another three were upheld by the supreme military court, according a statement on the Hamas-run Gaza Palestinian interior ministry website.
Sunday’s verdicts raise the number of people on death row to 10.
Seven other people were given prison sentences Sunday ranging from 12 to 17 years long for spying for Israel.
The supreme military court also granted an appeal to a 24-year-old who was sentenced to hang for spying, and instead sentenced him to an unspecified term of hard labor in prison.
Under Palestinian law, death sentences can be handed out for those collaborating with Israel, murderers and drug traffickers.
Hamas issues ultimatum over Palestinian local elections
The Hamas terror group said Thursday it would boycott local elections and nix municipal elections in Gaza unless Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas acceded to a list of demands.
In a statement published on its website the group, which is the de facto ruler in Gaza, called for the PA to ease a “security grip” on Hamas’s leadership in the West Bank.
It also demanded Abbas plan the elections in consultation with Hamas and urged the restoration of elections laws formulated in 2005, which it says were agreed upon by all Palestinians and that have since been changed.
At the end of January, the PA set already delayed elections for May 13.
Jewish Students At UW Harrassed, Israel Display Vandalized
Undergraduate Adam Rozen-Wheeler along with several other students were looking forward to setting up their Israel educational display on the University of Washington’s Red Square this past Tuesday afternoon for a week of Israel advocacy on campus. When the students, all affiliated with the Coalition of Husky Allies for Israel (CHAI-UW) set up their table piled high with posters, brochures, Israeli chocolates and pro-Israel swag, they were expecting to engage in robust discussions regarding Israel and the Middle East. Instead, anti-Israel students, believed to be affiliated with anti-Israel organization SUPER-UW tried to shut them down.
“It was sort of a microcosm of the Arab-Israeli conflict” Rozen-Wheeler told me. “After we set up, an anti-Israel student told the UW Office of Student Activities that we were too close to SUPER-UW’s display”. Rozen-Wheeler was struck by the absurdity of the demand considering that SUPER-UW set up on Red Square well after CHAI-UW and deliberately chose to assemble their anti-Israel display near the pro-Israel table.
Recalled UW bio-engineering student Uri Zvi, “the pro-Palestinian group, with their offensive borderline antisemitic display, arrived after we did. They saw where we were located, which was far enough from their original location, but decided to bring their “wall” about 20 meters away from us and then complained that we were too close.”
Jewish Student Leader at UK University: Defeat of BDS Motion Due to Efforts of Broad Campus Coaltion
A student government motion to boycott Israel was tabled this week at a British university, due to the efforts of a broad campus coalition, the head of the school’s Jewish Society (JSoc) told The Algemeiner on Friday.
Michal Belovski, president of City, University of London JSoc was referring to what he called a large contingent of both Jewish and non-Jewish students who banded together to defeat the resolution, a version of which was passed in November and subsequently rejected by the school’s Board of Trustees.
Since then, according to Belovski, the motion was “reworded” in an attempt to enable it to be brought before the student union (CUSU) once again.
“But we were ready this second time around, with more Jews and allies willing to vote against it,” she said. “The proposer realized, as soon as we walked into the meeting, that not only would the motion not pass, but we would put up a good fight first – so she pulled it before it was debated or voted on.”
The original proposal called on the CUSU to “raise awareness of Palestinian issues…of BDS around campus and commit resources”:
Outraged Jewish Students at Oxford Demand Withdrawal of Campus Support for Upcoming Conference Hosting Anti-Israel Activists, Alleged Terrorism Sympathizers
The Jewish Society at Britain’s Oxford University (OUJS) is calling for the withdrawal of support for an upcoming conference featuring speakers who have expressed sympathy for Palestinian terrorists and advocated violence against Israelis, reported Cherwell, the school’s independent student newspaper.
According to the report, the OUJS railed against the Oxford Radical Forum (ORF) 2017 for planning to host Miriyam Aouragh, a Dutch anthropologist and activist, who reportedly described Ahmed Yassin, a founder of Hamas, as an “elderly man in a wheelchair living in a refugee camp in Gaza” and organized a memorial service for him after he was killed by Israeli forces; Malia Bouattia, the president of the National Union of Students, who called the University of Birmingham a “Zionist outpost;” and Richard Seymour, who reportedly wrote of an Israeli journalist, “F*** him, they should cut his throat.”
The OUJS told Cherwell, “We believe that our community should not be inviting speakers who espouse antisemitism and hate speech. They should not be afforded a platform to spread their opinion.”
The OUJC demanded that the Oxford University Student Union (OUSU) and a number of Junior Common Rooms (JCRs) — which provide services to a sector of the student population — withdraw their funding for the event, saying, “We believe that our students’ union and JCRs should not be supporting this.”
Top European rabbi: Synagogues no longer a safe haven
“Synagogues are no longer a safe haven,” a top European rabbi said Sunday at a special panel about the situation of Jews across the continent, held in the framework of the Munich Security Conference.
“At the back of almost every Jew’s mind is the possibility of what could happen. Sadly, in Copenhagen, Brussels and in Paris, that has become a reality,” said Chief Rabbi of Moscow Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, at a breakfast event he was hosting titled “Securing Jewish Communities across Europe.”
“The Jewish community finds itself targeted from a number of directions; from the extreme Right, the extreme Left and Islamic terrorism,” Goldschmidt said, referencing terrorist attacks that have targeted Jews in different European countries in recent years.
The event took the form of a panel discussion featuring MK Tzipi Livni, Deputy CEO for Diplomacy of the World Jewish Congress Maram Stern, director of the International Center for the Study of Radicalization Dr. Peter R. Neumann and former director of Europol Jürgen Storbeck. German journalist Richard Schneider moderated the discussion.
US Vice President Mike Pence Visits Nazi Concentration Camp Dachau
Vice President Mike Pence, along with second lady Karen Pence and their eldest daughter Charlotte, visited a Nazi concentration camp Sunday near Munich, Germany.
They were met by Karl Freller, the director of the Foundation of Bavarian Memorial Sites. They were also joined by a survivor of the camp, Abba Naor, a Jewish Lithuanian who today lives in Israel.
The Pences walked around the camp, touring various areas, including the prison yard. They also spent time in a building which contains exhibits about the Nazis. They stood before a large map showing the network of camps around Germany and Nazi-occupied countries elsewhere in Europe.
Naor spoke to the vice president about conditions at Dachau, which opened in March 1933 and was liberated by American forces in April 1945.
Of the camp's liberation by American troops, he said, "One morning, they came," he said. "Strange faces."
The Pences visited another room that housed examples of Nazi propaganda.
Outside, the Pences spent time looking at the International Monument, a sculpture made of dark bronze designed by Nandor Glid in 1997. It features short strands of barbed wire on which skeletons are hanging with their heads dangling sharply. On either side of the sculpture are concrete fence posts which closely resemble the ones actually used to support the barbed wire fence around the camp.
Apple buys Israel’s RealFace AI startup – report
US giant Apple has bought Israeli startup RealFace Technology, a leading developer of facial recognition technology, according to a Calcalist report today (February 19).
RealFace’s online presence disappeared on Sunday – its website went offline, as did its Facebook page – upon news of the buyout. While this is a sign the acquisition is already in progress, no official press statement from either company has been released.
The Hebrew financial website says RealFace is Apple’s fourth acquisition in Israel, and estimated to be worth a couple of million of dollars.
The company was founded in 2014 by Adi Eckhouse Barzilai and Aviv Mader. “Our revolutionary software is offering customers a smart biometric log-in solution that is changing frictionless access to applications on mobile,” Eckhouse Barzilai told Crunchbase.
RealFace created AI facial recognition software that intends to replace regular passwords with biometic logins on mobile devices via deep learning methods.
Mobileye installs anti-crash tech on NYC cars
Mobileye, a Jerusalem-based developer of advanced vision and driver assistance systems, said it has installed its collision avoidance systems on 4,500 for-hire vehicles in New York City.
Together with insurer Atlas Financial Holdings, Inc., Mobileye said, it has equipped thousands of New York City-based rideshare vehicles, such as those available through popular apps including Uber and Lyft, with advanced collision avoidance systems that aim to prevent accidents.
From this month, 4,500 for-hire vehicles in New York City will feature Mobileye’s vision sensors and technologies to identify potential dangerous scenarios in real time, and alert drivers about impending collisions, giving them time to react, Mobileye said in a statement.
“As the popularity of ridesharing continues to grow in cities across the country, it is imperative that these vehicles take advantage of new technologies designed to enhance the safety of drivers and passengers,” said Moran David, director of business development at Mobileye. The technology will “provide an extra layer of safety and protection to drivers and their passengers” while also improve the behavior of drivers, he said.
Israeli, Palestinian researchers cooperate in disease study
Scientists from Israel and the Palestinian Authority, whose leaders are most often vying with each other, have joined together to study risk factors in the two populations for the B-cell type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL).
Both populations report high incidences of NHL, which represents the fifth-most-common malignancy in Israel and the eighth-most-common malignancy among West Bank Palestinians.
NHL tumors, which may originate from B or T lymphocytes, account for about three percent of all cancers in the world. But most epidemiological studies of it have been conducted in North American and European populations, with a few focusing on East Asian populations; very few epidemiological studies, however, have been conducted on B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (B-NHL) in Middle Eastern populations.
As Israelis and Palestinians represent genetically and culturally diverse populations living in the same region, research analyzing their risk factors can increase scientists’ understanding of genes and environment in causing lymphoma. Despite sharing the same ecosystem, the populations differ in terms of lifestyle, health behaviors and medical systems. Y(As of 2012, Israel also ranked first in the world in NHL incidence rates.) The incidence rate is the number of new cases per population at risk in a given time period . When the denominator is the sum of the person-time of the at risk population, it is also known as the incidence density rate or person-time incidence rate.
Female Druse news presenter makes history on Channel 1
There have been a lot of new faces on Channel 1 over the past 18 months, despite the fact that the Israel Broadcasting Authority is set to cease operations on April 30, to be replaced by the Israel Broadcasting Corporation.
While in the process of becoming history, IBA is making history. On Saturday evening, for the first time, its Channel 1 featured a female Druse presenter on the weekend news.
Ghadir Kamal Meriach, 32, has been working at IBA since 2011, presenting the main news broadcast on its Arabic-language channel. Meriach is married with two children. She lives in Daliat al-Carmel, where Rafik Halabi, former news director of IBA, has been mayor since 2013.
Yoram Cohen, the acting editor of IBA’s news department, regards Meriach as an excellent presenter, and said that it was high time that minorities were given equal opportunities in Israel’s communications industry.
Fans swarm NFL players at Jerusalem meet and greet
Five National Football League players who spent the last week traveling in Israel — without the six who pulled out after expressing discomfort with the expressed goals of the government-sponsored trip — finally met local fans Saturday night in Jerusalem.
The five — Calais Campbell (Arizona Cardinals), Dan Williams (Oakland Raiders), Cameron Jordan (New Orleans Saints), Delanie Walker (Tennessee Titans) and Mychal Kendricks (Philadelphia Eagles) — were introduced by Steve Leibowitz, president and founder of the American Football League in Israel.
The fans — mostly young, male American yeshiva students — were thrilled, occasionally yelling out the name of one of the players or one of the teams represented.
Someone called out, “Where is Michael Bennett?” naming the Seattle Seahawks’ defensive end who pulled out of the trip late last week, saying he felt he was being “used” by the Israeli government.
Tears for Fears fans head over heels with news of Tel Aviv show
Good news for fans of British pop group Tears for Fears -- the band has confirmed it will perform in Israel this summer. The duo's show has been scheduled for July 5, at Tel Aviv's Menora Mivtachim arena.
The band, founded in 1981 in Bath, England by Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith, reached international success with their second album "Songs From the Big Chair" and has sold over 30 million albums worldwide.
Fans of the band can look forward to hearing Tears for Fears perform their classic hits "Everybody Rules the World," "Shout," "Head Over Heels" and "Sowing the Seeds of Love," to name a few, as well as material from their new album, set for release later this year.
Tears for Fears is among a list of top international artists scheduled to perform in Israel in 2017, including Aerosmith, Guns N' Roses, Radiohead, the Pixies, Rod Stewart and Celine Dion.
Israeli hospital helps deaf Palestinian children hear for first time
Sixteen deaf Palestinian children were able to hear for the first time after undergoing a procedure at an Israeli hospital to repair their hearing, Hebrew media reported Saturday.
The operations to repair the children’s hearing, known as cochlear implant surgery, were performed by doctors at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem in Jerusalem over the course of the past several months, according to the Ynet news website.
The last six surgeries took place over the course of just a few days.
Dr. Michal Kaufmann, who performed the surgeries, told Ynet that being able to perform the operations was quite difficult due to the “logistical challenge[s].”
“Many authorizations were required from the Defense Ministry,” she said, adding that “some of the children arrived without a medical record and required extensive tests at Hadassah alongside emotional and psychological treatment.”



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Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

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