Wednesday, December 01, 2021

From Ian:

Jonathan Tobin: Lighting a candle in Hebron beyond the seventh step
The same pattern was repeated in the 20th century when Arabs – egged on by the incitement of Haj Amin el-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem – led a pogrom in 1929 in which 69 Jews were murdered with scores of others wounded, maimed or raped. Jewish life in the city didn't fully resume until after it was taken by Israeli forces in 1967, an event that also signaled the end of religious discrimination at the Tomb of the Patriarchs with worship for both faiths allowed inside as Jews were finally allowed past the seventh step.

The memory of the atrocities of 1929 hang heavy over the small community that has restarted Jewish life in properties that Jews owned before 1929 with terrorism from their Arab neighbors a constant threat. Nor is it odd that Herzog should also be affected by memories of 1929 since his great-grandmother, Faya Hillman, survived the massacre by feigning death among the corpses of her neighbors.

Herzog noted that Jews are not the only ones who "trace their roots" to Hebron since it's also considered sacred by Muslims. The shared burial place ought to be a connection for peace. Instead, it has become a focus of mutual hostility – the result not only of constant Arab attacks on Jews in the city but also the 1994 shooting attack at Machpelah by Baruch Goldstein, a Jewish extremist who murdered 29 Muslims who were worshipping at the shrine.

The problem that Hebron poses is not just one of how to protect the 1,000 Jews who live amid 200,000 Arabs, especially when both sides consider themselves to be living under siege.

It's that the Arabs continue to regard the Jewish presence at a place where Jewish life began as illegitimate. Even if, as Herzog does, you support a two-state solution, the prospect of once again evicting the Jews of Hebron is unthinkable. Yet that is exactly the scenario envisaged even by the so-called "moderates" of Fatah, in addition to supporters of the extreme Islamist group Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip but regards Hebron as a stronghold of their movement in the West Bank.

While many Jews on the left sympathize with the idea of throwing Jews they regard as extremists out of Hebron, the Palestinian stand about the ancient city is hardly surprising since Fatah and Hamas think of towns and cities inside pre-1967 Israel as every bit as much illegal as Hebron or the most remote West Bank hilltop settlement.

For all of the problems that come with Hebron, if Jews have no right to live there, can their presence in any other part of the country be considered legitimate? Palestinians and their antisemitic allies abroad who masquerade under the banner of anti-Zionism don't think so.

By lighting a candle in Hebron, Herzog sent a loud message to the Palestinians that they need to give up their delusions about evicting the Jews or returning to a situation where they wouldn't be able to ascend beyond the seventh step to Machpelah. Those who encourage them to hold onto those destructive fantasies about Hebron or any other part of the country are not promoting peace or interfaith harmony. On the contrary, those opposed to Jewish life in Hebron are encouraging an endless cycle of violence fueled by antisemitic and anti-Israel hate.


'Apartheid state'? It's time for a different claim
Here are two instances that illustrate how absurd the claim is. This week, police arrested a young Arab man after he was caught on camera blocking the Begin Highway in Jerusalem as part of a wedding celebration. The incident took place three months ago. He was known to the police and they fined him. Only after the footage was released on social media did the police remember to make arrests.

In the second incident, minors blocked off the entrance to Jerusalem during the Ahuvia Sandak protests and were beaten and arrested, led off to the court in handcuffs and with their feet bound. In South Africa, could the oppressed have been treated with kid gloves, while the oppressor was led in cuffs to a jail cell? The answer is clear. Were Black South Africans under the boot of apartheid allowed to riot, stab, and shoot at the entrance to a hospital, and find themselves at home a week later? It's doubtful.

Another option is that Israel is operating under a kind of "reverse apartheid," one that discriminates, but gently, and is soft on criminals when it comes to appointing doctors and judges and MKs, even if they support terrorism against citizens of the state. On the other hand, to cause the Arab minority to suffer and discriminate against them from north to south, the government that "oppresses" them allows them to express support for unchecked violence and promise that it will resurface during the next war.

Ironically, it was the violent Arab nationalists raising their heads that smashed the delusion that if we would ignore the danger, it would disappear, and also proved that claims that Israel is a racist, discriminatory country are some of the biggest lies told about it.

It's time to shelve the apartheid theory, even if it's not clear that will help. Anyone who tries to miscast Israel as a racist dystopia doesn't intend to stop. Claims about "apartheid" were just part of a long list of excuses. Once it was infiltrators, then settlers, then "processes identified with the 1930s." The name changes, but the goal stays the same – to find darkness within the light. They see Israel as an evil state going back to the Maccabees, the source of all trouble and ills. It's time to find a new campaign and drop the ridiculous "apartheid" claim.
Two Israelis attacked, car torched by Palestinians after entering downtown Ramallah
Two Israelis were attacked and their car was set ablaze by a crowd of Palestinians after they entered downtown Ramallah on Wednesday night.

It was not immediately clear why the two had found themselves near al-Manara Square in the de facto Palestinian Authority administrative capital, well away from the major checkpoints leading to the site.

Police identified one of the Israelis as a resident of the West Bank settlement of Shiloh; the other lives in the mostly Ultra-Orthodox Israeli city of Elad. According to an Israeli security official, the two claimed they sought to reach Hashmonaim, a settlement about a half-hour drive away by car.

In videos from the scene, a crowd of Palestinians can be seen surrounding their car. The two Israelis, who appear to be religious, did not respond to taunts from the crowd in the video.

After their car was torched, the two Israelis were extracted by Palestinian Authority security forces. Under Ramallah’s policy of security coordination, PA forces work to prevent Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis and extricate Israelis who stumble into Palestinian areas of the West Bank.

“The citizens left accompanied by Palestinian security forces in coordination with the [Israeli] security forces in the area,” the Israeli army said.

The two Israelis were subsequently held for interrogation by Israeli police. They did not suffer serious injuries during the incident, according to the Israeli army.


JPost Editorial: Banning Israelis from squash championship is Malaysia's shame
This is no small matter. Malaysia is a country far away from Israel. There is no history of conflict between the two but nevertheless, Malaysia’s former prime minister, Mahathir Mohammed, has openly admitted to being a vehement antisemite.

In a 2003 speech to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, he claimed Jews “rule the world by proxy.” He sought to encourage the 57 Muslim countries assembled to oppose Israel, clearly linking his hatred of Jews to his hatred of Israel. This is because hatred of Israel is almost always motivated by hatred of Jews.

Countries like Malaysia not only ban Israeli athletes, they push antisemitism globally through support for people like Mahathir.

Mahathir’s comments haven’t ceased since 2003, yet he was still given a platform by Western universities like Oxford, Cambridge and Columbia – which claim to support progressive values like tolerance – to spout his modern-day Nazi-like speeches that he uses to mock the Holocaust and claim Jews are “hook-nosed.”

This shows the uphill struggle in educating the public about the nature of antisemitism and how corrosive it is.

Luckily today, there are many Arab countries, such as the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco, that are encouraging religious tolerance. New relations with Israel are part of this embrace of moderation. The world can learn from the religious tolerance coming from the region, and should avoid countries like Malaysia until they open their door to all athletes and turn away from the politics of hate.


American School in London in turmoil over concerns about diversity education and staff meeting that sparked antisemitism allegations
The prestigious American School in London is in turmoil over concerns about the content of diversity education and after revelations about a staff meeting that sparked antisemitism allegations.

The headteacher of the school – the most expensive day school in Britain, which counts several famous alumni and children of numerous celebrities – has resigned well short of the end of her ten-year term, after complaints were made by parents about the content of diversity education at the school, both to the media and directly to Campaign Against Antisemitism.

Concerns centred around the teaching of “critical race theory” and other controversial ideas, including “white privilege”. Campaign Against Antisemitism has received concerning reports about the school apparently teaching that Jews are part of a privileged elite. A “Privilege Power” chart was reportedly disseminated, which appeared to show Jews just below Protestants and Catholics at the upper end of the “Spirituality-Religion” segment of the chart.

The introduction of racially-segregated after-school clubs reportedly upset numerous parents, many of whom are American.

In addition, allegations have arisen about a staff meeting in which the words “Nazi”, “swastika”, “Hitler” and “skinheads” were used by faculty members during what was described as a heated conversation about how some parents have reacted to the diversity curriculum.

The school has denied that the inflammatory terms were used to describe parents but has not clarified in what context the terms were used. A spokesperson for the school did concede that remarks made during the meeting “could cause offence to the community,” with numerous Jewish families sending their children to the school.


Florida Jewish federation says Facebook algorithm blocked ad against antisemitism
Just ahead of Hanukkah, the Jewish Federation of Broward County in Florida tried to purchase an ad on Facebook, a simple post calling attention to the problem of antisemitism as a part of a new nationwide US campaign called “Shine a Light.”

But Facebook’s automated system rejected the ad without explanation, leading federation officials to suspect the post was accidentally ensnared by a filter designed to block hate speech.

“Unfortunately, Facebook inexplicably rejected our ads, presumably because they contained the words ‘hate’ and ‘anti-Semitism,’” wrote the federation’s board chair Alan Cohn and interim president and CEO Mark Freedman in a letter to the company on Tuesday. “This, we believe, is an unintended, but calamitous consequence of your effort to curb hate speech.”

If they are right, it wouldn’t be the first time such a thing has happened. From the moment Facebook banned Holocaust denial on its platforms last October, Jewish museums and other institutions doing education and outreach on antisemitism have reported trouble getting content published.

“It’s a real problem for us,” an official at the US Holocaust Memorial and Museum told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in June.

As algorithms governing what can be published appear to get tripped up, human reviewers are supposed to step in and distinguish hate from efforts to combat it. But many have found that getting their posts reviewed by a person and then approved can take months, if it happens at all.
CBC and Waterloo Record Portray Israel as an Abuser of Palestinian Children
While media outlets like CBC and the Waterloo Record reported on the allegedly terrible crime that Israel commits by daring to arrest Palestinian youth for attempting to commit deadly terrorist attacks against the Jewish State, the words “terrorism” and “rioting” did not appear a single time in either news article. That is akin to news coverage about a trial of murder or attempted murder, when the details, names or context aren’t mentioned at all.

While both media outlets carry claims that there is a military “occupation” carried out by Israel, what they don’t make clear is that under international law, Israel is obligated to operate a military court system. The alternative would be for Israel to administer Israeli civil law to the disputed territories, which would effectively amount to de facto annexation.

What is truly tragic is how countless Palestinian children have been used and abused by their own figures of authority as a cudgel and pawns in a propaganda war against Israel.

Make no mistake, the rights of children are extremely important, but Israel says that it abides by international standards to safeguard children’s rights when they are detained. As Israeli officials have previously explained: “When a minor involved in terrorist activity is arrested, the law is clear: No torture or humiliation is permitted, nor is solitary confinement in order to induce a confession, a special juvenile court has been established to guarantee professional care for minors in detention. The above and other measures have succeeded in making legal proceedings easier for minors, and have almost halved their duration.”

Israel respects international treaties and affords full rights for detained minors including visits by the Red Cross and the right to legal counsel. None of this context was included in the Record’s or CBC’s reports, nor were any Israeli officials quoted. So much for fairness and the pursuit of the truth.

Given the widespread state of anti-Israel and antisemitic propaganda in the Palestinian territories, it is hardly a surprise when the next generation of Palestinians – told by the Palestinian leadership, media, religious leadership and elsewhere that Israel is a foreign cancer on their land – seeks to rectify that perceived injustice by killing innocent Israelis. The force-fed incitement against Israel, targeting Palestinian children specifically, amounts to child abuse, plain and simple.

In essence, these Palestinians who are arrested by Israel while attempting to murder Israelis may be children, but they are not acting alone, and to simply parrot the baseless claims of rally organizers without giving context is to do a gross injustice to the truth. The more that mainstream Canadian news coverage gives a tacit pass to the criminals who groom children to commit terrorist acts, and to their Canadian enablers organizing disingenuous public demonstrations, the more that the truth is whitewashed, and the real victims of hatred, murder and terrorism are swept under the rug.
One Year After Ban on Holocaust Denial, Content Pushing False Claims About Nazi Genocide Still Rife on Facebook, ADL Says
According to the report, “while dedicated groups have been removed and one search term limited, Holocaust denial content remains on the platform.” The ADL discovered that the majority of Holocaust denial posts still accessible were posted prior to the October 2020 ban, yet never subsequently removed. Additionally, the ADL found “multiple instances of Holocaust denial content posted after the policy went into effect.”

The report noted that “while the term ‘Holohoax’ no longer returns results when a user searches for it, other keywords, such as ‘hollow hoax,’ ‘Holocaust Hoax,’ ‘Holocaust lies,’ ‘Holocaust fraud,’ ‘so called Holocaust,’ and ‘Holocaust didn’t happen’ are searchable and return results. Many of the recent posts that remain are re-shares of older posts, using modified language to avoid detection, and they include external links to Holocaust denial videos or articles. Many of these were shared by known Holocaust deniers and antisemites and were accompanied by antisemitic rhetoric in addition to Holocaust denial sentiments.”

Much of the Holocaust denial material on Facebook originated with a virulently antisemitic website called “Russia Insider,” the report said.

“The site has a history of pushing white supremacist, antisemitic, Holocaust denial and conspiratorial content, and was called out for its antisemitic content and links to ‘pro-government oligarchs’ in Russia,” the report said. One item published on the site and then spread on Facebook claimed that Josef Mengele — the Nazi doctor notorious for his cruel medical experiments on concentration camp inmates — was the victim of a “pack of lies” that are a part of the “Holocaust myth.”

Announcing the report’s publication, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt acknowledged that “Facebook has taken some positive steps to address the proliferation of Holocaust denial, but that doesn’t mean that the problem has gone away.”

Said Greenblatt: “There’s still a lot of Holocaust denial on Facebook. We urge the platform to take additional steps to address these cracks in enforcement as well as to ensure that the ban is more consistently applied across the platform.”
Fox Nation host compares Fauci to Nazi doctor Mengele
Fox Nation host Lara Logan compared Anthony Fauci, the top official handling the US coronavirus response, to Josef Mengele, the Nazi doctor who conducted experiments on inmates at the Auschwitz death camp.

Logan was speaking on “Fox News Primetime” on Monday about the prospect of new restrictive measures in the wake of the international concern over a new coronavirus variant, dubbed Omicron.

“This is what people say to me, that he doesn’t represent science to them,” Logan said of Fauci, President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser, who has become a lightning rod for conservative ire because he has favored restrictions to contain the virus. “He represents Joseph Mengele, the Nazi doctor who did experiments on Jews during the Second World War and in the concentration camps. And I am talking about people all across the world are saying this.”

The Auschwitz memorial museum called the comparison “shameful” in a statement on Tuesday.

“Exploiting the tragedy of people who became victims of criminal pseudo-medical experiments in Auschwitz in a debate about vaccines, pandemic and people who fight for saving human lives is shameful,” the museum’s Twitter account wrote. “It is disrespectful to victims and a sad symptom of moral and intellectual decline.”

In the wake of Omicron’s development, Biden has restricted travel from some southern African nations where it appears to be prevalent. But otherwise Fauci has said it is too early to tell if the variant will trigger renewed restrictions.

National Jewish groups have repeatedly rebuked conservative figures, including, frequently, Republican lawmakers, who have likened coronavirus protections to the Nazi era.
South Florida Classes on How Jews and Christians are ‘Enemies of Islam’
Tafsir is an elucidation or interpretation of the Quran, Islam’s principal text. Devout Muslims throughout the world have made tafsir a significant part of their lives. The work of Ismail Ibn Kathir, a 14th century expert on tafsir, is prominent in South Florida’s radical Muslim community. One mosque, the Islamic Center of Weston, is using a set of volumes from this work – Tafsir Ibn Kathir – to teach a class on the subject. This is alarming, given the amount of bigotry and violence contained within the books, including referring to Jews and Christians as “the enemies of Islam.” It is about time that these mosques are exposed for the centers of hate that they are.

The Islamic Center of Weston (ICW) was incorporated in the state of Florida, in July 2014, and moved to its present location in November 2016. In its short time in existence, the mosque has brought in a number of terror and hate-associated extremists through its doors.

In November 2020, ICW added Faisal Haroon to its board of directors. Haroon has used his social media to promote several videos featuring notorious anti-Semites Kenneth O’Keefe and TruNews host Rick Wiles. In the videos, O’Keefe: claims the US government is owned by Israel; refers to the Holocaust as “the so-called Holocaust”; labels Jews “dual nationals” and “traitors”; and says 9/11 was carried out by “billionaire Jewish businessmen” (Haroon called this one “A Must watch Video.”) In March 2019, Haroon was caught by Facebook posting “false information” about India’s dealings in Kashmir.

In February 2018, ICW hosted a speech by Syed Ammar Ahmed, who is currently the Government Affairs Coordinator for ICNA Relief USA, the social services division of the Islamic Circle of North America and a group with numerous links to South Asian terror. In February 2010, following a debate he participated in at a school, Ahmed wrote, “I hate white people”; called himself a “terrorist”; and at the suggestion of an acquaintance, joked that he “should have threatened to blow up the school.”
New York Lawmakers Condemn ‘Repugnant’ Menorah Vandalism at Queens Site of 2014 Incident
New York local lawmakers and religious leaders gathered Tuesday to denounce the reported vandalism of a public menorah at the same location of a similar incident in 2014.

The large menorah — located on a traffic island in the Hollis Hills neighborhood of Queens — was knocked into the road and had most of its lights broken, New York State Assemblyman David Weprin’s office said Tuesday.

It was the same location where in December 2014, a public menorah display was twice toppled by vandals, ahead of and during the Hanukkah holiday.

Rabbi Yerachmiel Zalmanov of Chabad of Eastern Queens, which sponsors the display, reported the incident to the NYPD, Weprin’s office said. Both joined Tuesday’s community gathering with State Senator John Liu, City Council Member Barry Grodenchik, and rabbis David Wise, Gary Greene, and Mayer Waxman.

“Hanukkah is a time of peace and joy. No acts of vandalism or antisemitism will ever be tolerated,” said Assemblyman David Weprin. “Each incident is dehumanizing and a repugnant stain on our community. We are watching. The hard-working members of law enforcement are watching. And this community — where we always have each other’s backs — is watching.”


Hundreds Attend Menorah Lighting in Pennsylvania Day After It Was Vandalized
Hundreds of people attended the lighting of the menorah in Lancaster, Pa., on Sunday night—the first night of the eight-day holiday of Hanukkah—a day after it was badly damaged.

The menorah’s metal arms were found bent on Saturday morning, making it unusable, reported Lancaster Online.

A local blacksmith helped repair the menorah, making it useable for the lighting ceremony, according to the report. Mark Lewin, the artist who built it, plans to fix it even more.

Lancaster Mayor Danene Sorace said, “I don’t know any better way to celebrate the start of the holiday season than for us to gather today and let our light shine together as a community. There is no shadow that can overtake us.”

Pennsylvania State Sen. Scott Martin said he was “very disheartened” to learn about the incident, adding that vandalism “should never be tolerated and is always disappointing; and when the very symbol of a religion is desecrated by vandalism it is unacceptable and reprehensible.”

Police are investigating the incident.


Florida man has large menorah stolen, Rabbi gifts him even bigger one
A man in Hollywood, Florida had his six-foot tall Menorah stolen from his home on Saturday night, WPLG Local10 reports.

Rabbi Eli Eckstein, a resident of the Emerald Hills neighborhood in Broward county’s Hollywood, Florida, told WPLG that his menorah was stolen by a man driving a white pickup truck. The suspect, who remains at large, was spotted by witnesses driving around with the silver menorah. The menorah was put up ahead of the first night of Hanukkah, which was on Sunday.

On Monday, just over a day after the robbery and ahead of the second night of the eight-day festival, Chabad of Dania Beach delivered Eckstein and his family a new menorah – one that stood at a staggering nine feet tall.

“The way we fight darkness is by bringing light,” The Chabad of Dania Beach representative told WPLG.

“Instead of feeling depressed or upset, we are going to spread it even more,” Eckstein said. “We are going to light a nine-footer here and have the entire community come out.”
Entertainers, politicians rally against antisemitism at Times Square Hanukkah event
Hundreds gathered in Times Square Monday to celebrate the second night of Hanukkah, with live music, speeches and, of course, a public menorah lighting.

But it wasn’t just about feel-good holiday cheer: The event was part of the “Shine a Light on Antisemitism” campaign, which aims to raise awareness about antisemitism in order to encourage individuals and their communities to fight against it.

The campaign, which is sponsored by more than 60 North American organizations and corporations, both Jewish and non-Jewish, was formed by a coalition of major Jewish advocacy groups, including the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee, the UJA-Federation of New York, the Jewish Federations of North America and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York.

Emceed by “Real Housewives of New York” star Eboni K. Williams, the Times Square event was a mix of musical performances and speeches by prominent New York politicians, including Governor Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio and Attorney General Letitia James. The Maccabeats, the all-male Jewish a cappella group, opened, performing their biggest hits, “Latke Recipe” and “Candlelight,” as well as “Maoz Tzur” after the menorah lighting.

Israeli singer-songwriter David Broza performed “Yehieh Tov” (“It Will Be Good”) and the Jewish reggae crossover artist Matisyahu closed out the night with several of his biggest hits, including “One Day” and “Jerusalem.”
The history of the Hasmonean Kingdom

COVID: First signs that vaccine protects against Omicron – health minister
There are indications that individuals fully vaccinated against corona within six months or with the booster are also protected against the Omicron variant, Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz said on Tuesday, after another two cases were identified, bringing the total to four.

“In the coming days we will have more accurate information about the efficacy of the vaccine against Omicron, but there is already room for optimism, and there are initial indications that those who are vaccinated with a vaccine still valid or with a booster will also be protected from this variant,” Horowitz said while visiting the Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba with Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman.

“The vaccine is really crucial right now,” said Horowitz. “Anyone who is exposed to the variant without a vaccine will put themselves at unnecessary risk.”

Later in the evening, a report by Channel 12 said the Pfizer vaccine is just slightly less effective in preventing infection with Omicron than with Delta – 90% as opposed to 95% – while it is as effective – around 93% – in preventing serious symptoms at least for those vaccinated with a booster.

According to the report, the ability of the variant to infect is higher than Delta but not as much as feared – around 1.3 times higher.
Beating forecasts, Israel sees strong economic rebound in 2021, says OECD
The OECD said that the Israeli economy rebounded strongly in 2021, beating forecasts, citing the country’s ongoing booster vaccination campaign, a recovering labor market, and a booming local tech sector.

“Economic activity rebounded strongly in 2021 and GDP is projected to grow robustly by 6.3% in 2021, 4.9% in 2022 and 4% in 2023,” the OECD said in its December 2021 Economic Outlook report published Wednesday.

Israel’s recovery “could be slower if the health situation deteriorates again, or the increase in inflation is stronger or more persistent than assumed in the projections,” the OECD warned.

Israel weathered the fourth wave of the pandemic well this summer, quickly tightening some restrictions and launching a booster vaccination campaign that has seen over 4 million people get a third dose of the shot, according to Health Ministry figures. Last week, Israel began offering vaccines to children ages 5-11, with initial figures from health providers indicating they are being inoculated at a faster pace than when shots were okayed for kids between 12 and 15.

In response to the discovery of the Omicron variant last week, the country reimposed an entry ban on tourists via air travel on Sunday for the next two weeks, at least. The move dealt another blow to the ailing tourism industry, which was devastated by the pandemic and didn’t have time to bounce back.
Tel Aviv overtakes Paris as world’s most expensive city to live in
Tel Aviv has overtaken Paris and is now ranked as the world’s most expensive city to live in, the Economist Intelligence Unit found in a new study.

According to the data, soaring price increases are contributing to the fastest rise in the cost of living for city dwellers in five years. The EIU’s 2021 index, which tracks the cost of living across 173 cities across the world, reveals Tel Aviv is the world’s most expensive city, rising from fifth place in 2020 to overtake Paris, which previously occupied the top spot.

On average, prices for the goods and services covered by index have risen by 3.5% in local-currency terms, compared with an increase of just 1.9% this time last year.

Transport costs rose most rapidly in this year’s survey, mainly because of rising oil prices driving a 21% increase in the price of unleaded petrol, but the recreation, tobacco and personal care categories also showed strong increases.

Tel Aviv’s rise mainly reflects the strength of the shekel against the US dollar and increases in grocery and transport prices. The city that saw the biggest jump was Tehran, which rose from the 79th to 29th place as international sanctions continue to cause shortages and price increases.

The Worldwide Cost of Living reports that rankings continue to be sensitive to shifts brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey data were collected between August 16 and September 12, 2021, when freight rates and commodity prices were on an increase across the world. Combined with fluctuating consumer demand and exchange-rate shifts, the resulting supply-chain problems have fueled price rises in the world’s major cities.
Tel Aviv ranked as world's most expensive city

Israeli pharmaceutical executive wins 2021 EU Prize for Women Innovators
An Israeli pharmaceutical executive was among three winners of the 2021 EU Prize for Women Innovators, awarded annually to female entrepreneurs who have founded a successful company and brought innovation to the market. The prize winners were announced this week by the European Commission.

Dr. Daphne Haim-Langford, founder and CEO of Israeli pharmaceutical company Tarsier Pharma, won the accolade. Her company, founded in 2016, develops treatments for autoimmune inflammatory ocular diseases.

The award comes with a €100,000 cash prize for each winner. Haim-Langford won alongside Merel Boers from the Netherlands, co-founder and CEO of NICO-LAB, a tech company helping physicians improve emergency care, and Mathilde Jakobsen from Denmark, co-founder and CEO of Fresh.Land, a digital platform that shortens and digitizes the food supply chain.

The annual prize was first launched in 2011 to honor “women entrepreneurs behind game-changing innovations,” according to the announcement. It is awarded to entrepreneurs from across the EU and countries associated with Horizon Europe including Israel, Albania, Moldova, Turkey, Ukraine and Morocco.

Horizon Europe is the EU’s key funding program for research and innovation with a budget of over $100 billion. Tarsier Pharma has received funding from the program.
“Towards Tomorrow” - the Israeli Pavilion at the Dubai Expo

Israeli 3D printing company Stratasys hosts dreidel design competition
Israeli 3D printing company Stratasys has partnered up with the YouDaica Jewish art team for a dreidel design competition in honor of Hanukkah.

Designs were submitted by Stratasys workers and their family members, with the winning three bids to be printed by the company.

The winners, among whom are two children of employees, were announced by CEO of Stratasys Yoav Zeif during a menorah lighting ceremony at a company office in Rehovot. Among them are designs based on the city of Jerusalem, Earth, and ballet.

"Our innovative technology has already demonstrated in many industry fields its capabilities for personalization and the implementation of the human imagination," Zeif said. "We continue to discover more ways in which 3D printing can push the limits and implement creative and complex ideas, even in areas that have seemingly nothing to do with technology.


Netta Barzilai’s Hanukkah Performance Lights Up NBA Game in Los Angeles
Israeli singer Netta Barzilai gave a Hanukkah performance on Sunday at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Barzilai, famous for winning the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest with “Toy,” performed at the LA Clippers vs. Golden State Warriors basketball game on the first night of the eight-day holiday.

She took to the stage and sang “Bassa-Sababa,” the first single that she released after her victory in the international competition.

The candle lighting ceremony took place prior to her performance. Hosted by the Consulate General of Israel in Los Angeles, it was attended by more than 100 students and local community representatives.

“Tonight, we celebrate Hanukkah,” said Consul General of Israel to the Pacific Southwest Hillel Newman, who led the ceremony. “The Jewish community lights candles against religious oppression—communities coming together to mark freedom and equality.”













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