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Weekly News Items from the Israeli Press, September 22, 2011


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Can Birthright bridge the Israel-Diaspora divide?

(Haaretz) As one of the most successful programs of the Jewish people to date looks forward to its next ten years, it has the tremendous opportunity to redefine the relationship between the younger generation of Israelis and Diaspora Jews.


Special-needs ulpan in Haifa allows disabled to feel Israeli

(Israel Hayom) New ulpan pilot project for special-needs immigrants in Haifa hailed as a great success.


Welfare and Social Issues

The danger of Israel's emergency laws

(Haaretz) The police must deploy properly for mass demonstrations, but such deployment cannot include shattering the backbone of basic civil rights.


Employees at Israel's facilities for Holocaust survivors protest privatization plan

(Haaretz) Netanyahu issued a directive to either issue a new tender for operation of the hostels or put them back under state control; as of Sunday, three facilities employing 210 employees will operate on emergency footing.


Teenagers to join Tel Aviv municipal inspectors, with limited authority

(Haaretz) Tenth-grade junior staffers to be city's 'watchful eye' in pilot program; will patrol streets of Tel Aviv wearing special uniforms, sometimes on their own, sometimes partnering up with municipal inspectors


Yachimovich elected new Labor leader

(Ynet) MK Shelly Yachimovich wins Labor primaries with 9% margin, receives 54% of votes compared to MK Amir Peretz's 45%.


Social Protests

Rothschild tent encampment to be evacuated, court rules

(Jpost) Tel Aviv court turns down petition against evacuation; attorneys call on municipality, state not to forget homeless people living in encampments.


Ministry ‘ready’ if medical residents resign en masse

(Jpost) If they do not take back their letters, hospitals will suddenly have fewer doctors to fill job slots, especially on nights and weekends.


Aliyah and Immigration

 '21,000 new immigrants arrived in Israel in the past year'

(Jpost) Most of the olim came from FSU, North and South America, Europe; the number of Ethiopian immigrants doubled in the past year.


Jewish World

Shortage of lulavs looms prior to Succot

(Jpost) Agriculture Ministry urges local production after it became clear exports from Sinai would be strictly prohibited.


Israel Advocacy/Relations

El Al flight crews enlisted for Israeli PR work in North America

(Haaretz) (JAFI) New project encourages national carrier flight staff to engage in public diplomacy efforts in three North American cities served by the airline - New York, Los Angeles and Toronto.


Israelis, Palestinians smile for camera

(Ynet) Portraits of ordinary people appear on bridges, billboards and broken-down buses all over Israel, West Bank as part of project created by prize-winning French street artist JR



First female bomb squad officer joins the police

(Jpost) Inbal Gawai took part in graduation at police academy in Bet Shemesh after successfully completing grueling 10-month long training course.


Israeli Economy

Stanley Fischer: Israel able to solve its economic issues

(Jpost) Bank of Israel Governor optimistic about economic future, says Israel cannot control world geo-political situation, only its response.


Pomegranates marked up 330% this year, farmers say

(The Marker) Farmers say they're selling the fruit to distributors for less than NIS 3 per kilo, which means they're being marked up by 200% to 330%.


Netanyahu: We want to boost competition, not hurt business

(Globes) The prime minister spoke at a press conference to present the interim proposals of the committee on economic concentration.



1,000 Israelis ‘connect with nature’ at Dead Sea

(Jpost) Spencer Tunick installation highlights shrinking Dead Sea, celebrates freedom of artistic expression.



Bikers, rollerbladers to take ‘green’ ride through TA

(Jpost) Israel Bike Association says it’s confident country will see improvements in cycling infrastructure this year.


Science, Technology and Development

Israel links up with 'Big Bang' physics research center

(Jpost) Israel signs up to become the first Associate member of 20-nation CERN research center probing the origins of the universe.


Op-Eds and Opinion Pieces from the Israel Press

Yediot Ahronot says that, "In the autumn of 2011, the world, especially the Middle East and Europe, is being controlled by 1.2 billion fear-instilling Muslims, and every non-Jew does his own simple account of whom to support: A billion Muslims or 7 million 'trouble-making' Jews."


Yisrael Hayom believes that, "Paradoxically, events in the Middle East emphasize the importance of US-Israeli strategic cooperation.  From the strategic aspect, there is a reasonable chance today that US-Israel relation will rise a notch, not only from the Israeli perspective, but also from the perspective of the Americans who need a stable leaning post.  Maybe not the US's 'land-based aircraft carrier', as has been articulated once, but certainly an important rear position and supply base for the American Army."