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Weekly News Items from the Israeli Press, October 12, 2011

 

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JFNA in the Israeli Press

U.S. Jewish groups voice cautious support for Shalit prisoner swap

(Haaretz) American Jewish organizations issue statements identifying with the joy of Gilad Shalit's family, who will soon be reunited with the IDF soldier who has been in captivity for the last five years.

 

JFNA Partners in the Israeli Press

Jewish-American youth volunteer as English teachers

(Israel Hayom) Dozens of Jewish-American youth come to volunteer as English teachers in Israel

 

Gilad Shalit

Cabinet approves deal with Hamas: Schalit to return home

(Jpost) Deal passes 26-3 in cabinet vote; Israel to release 1,000 prisoners in two-stage process, including 1/3 serving life sentences; Netanyahu: "My heart is with the families of terror victims."

 

Welfare and Social Issues

Former Rothschild tent dwellers petition evacuation

(Jpost) Forcing the homeless to vacate public spaces is illegal, claims rights group.

 

Taking on the taboo

(Jpost) Human rights groups, MK Orit Zuaretz set to raise the stakes in battle against prostitution in Israel.

 

Social Protests

Medical residents expected to tender resignations en masse

(Jpost) 70 residents don't show for work at Rambam; following another round of failed negotiations, residents to hold press conference announcing next move; Health Ministry expected to seek additional injunction.

 

National Labor Court orders residents to work

(Jpost) Court annuls resignation letters, calling them "collective in nature"; follows previous day's absence of 470 residents from work.

 

Social protest leaders slam approval of Trajtenberg report

(Jpost) Daphni Leef says c'tee recommendations offer no solution to housing crisis; Student leader decries "cosmetic changes" report offers.

 

Israel's junior lecturers declare strike, following lead of medical and labor sectors

(Haaretz) One-day strike over employment conditions to take place on October 30, first day of academic year; National Student Union may also strike in solidarity.

 

A small step for social justice in Israel

(Haaretz) The Trajtenberg Report is a good start; now, the protest movement must take heart and steel its resolve.

 

On verge of medical anarchy

(Ynet) Op-ed: Medical residents' demands are just, but walking out of hospitals a big no-no

 

Aliyah and Immigration

'Hallelujah' winners making aliyah

(Ynet) Adam Kleinberg of Mexico, who won first place in international Jewish song contest, interested in developing his musical skills in Israel. Runner up, Oliver Ghnassia of Belgium, plans to immigrate to Jewish state in coming months

 

Religious Pluralism in Israel

Some 200 Israelis urge Interior Ministry to change their status to 'without religion'

(Haaretz) Move prompted by Yoram Kaniuk's request for status change, accepted by Tel Aviv District Court; Kaniuk tells those following in his footsteps 'Judaism and democracy cannot go together.'

 

Education

Only religious teachers to be allowed to teach civics

(Jpost) There is some misunderstanding by schools in the field, some already implement outlines of plan by Religious Education Administration at Education Ministry, according to source.

 

Science, Technology and Development

Facebook: Israel's Shaker ‘is the next BIG thing’

(Israel 21C) Shaker revolutionizes the chat room, inviting the social media giant's 800 million users into a virtual pub where they can make new friends.

 

Op-Eds and Opinion Pieces from the Israel Press

Ma'ariv says that, "Whoever hasn't noticed, in the past days an aggressive campaign is being waged by the Defense Ministry and the IDF, over the heads of the Israeli public. Since the Trajtenberg Committee report was submitted, the Defense Ministry has unsheathed all of its heaviest weapons – and has gone to war."  The author argues that, "The contention according to which a cut in the [defense] budget will harm Israel's security is deliberate deceit.  The system's fat must be trimmed."

 

Yisrael Hayom notes that during Sukkot, the Book of Ecclesiastes is read in synagogues.  The author notes that, "On Sukkot, we are commanded to rejoice, but the custom is also to read Ecclesiastes, which instills one with a sense of despair.  This paradox reflects the complex nature of life in general and Jewish life in particular.  We cannot paint everything in black-and-white."  The author also believes that commandment to dwell in a rickety booth instills empathy with the less fortunate in that, "We leave our luxury apartments replete with Italian marble, Swedish furniture, a Jacuzzi and a top-storey view, and move – for a time – to a temporary dwelling on the ground, the ground of reality."