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Weekly News Items from the Israeli Press, December 15, 2011

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JFNA in the Israeli Press

Absorption Ministry stands by under-fire campaign

(Haaretz) Two of three controversial videos meant to convince citizens living abroad to return to Israel remain online despite criticism by U.S. Jews.


Federation Projects in the Israeli Press

Ontario bill calls for Jewish Heritage Month

(Ynet) Proposal introduced by MPP Mike Colle offers Ontarians opportunity to recognize important contributions Jewish Canadians have made to province's social, economic, political, cultural fabric.


Horim Bamercaz” Program

(Haifa-Boston) For the first time in Israel, a systemic response will be given for supporting parents of young children in order to prevent the phenomenon of youth at risk in the future.


Welfare and Social Issues

Israeli bloggers to get GPO cards

(Jpost) Government figures have trumpeted the move as an expansion of freedom of expression in the country.


IPS Publishes List of Terrorists to be Freed

(Israel National News) The Israel Prison Service has uploaded the list of 550 prisoners that will be released in the second part of the Shalit deal.


Civil Unrest

Rioting Jews to be tried in army courts

(Jpost) Netanyahu rejects calls by ministers to class suspects as terrorists; recommendations include immediate arrest warrants.


 In Arabic and in Hebrew, a name is more than just a name

(Haaretz) A serious world war is erupting in Israel about identity, narratives, the status of Israeli Arabs and the right of return.


Social Protests

C’tee: Trajtenberg recommendations on housing unhelpful

(Jpost) Knesset Economics C’tee members from coalition and opposition agree report adds little new on issue.


Religious Pluralism in Israel

'Conversion authority is inefficient, cumbersome'

(Jpost) Knesset panel critiques Authority; June changes mean applicants must now wait 18 months after civil wedding before applying for conversion.


Israeli activists to launch protest against segregated buses

(Haaretz) Over 500 people have signed up for the event on Facebook, which is slated to take place on New Year’s Day at several locations in both Jerusalem and central Israel.


Women banned from gym twice a week

(Ynet) Following religious students' complaints, Haifa's Technion offers 'men-only' fitness session. Secular students outraged: 'First buses, then singing in the army, now academic institution?'


Israel Philanthropy

Jewish ideas daily: Bittersweet charity

(Jpost) "The Jewish charitable impulse may be more tenuous than we have recognized. Bonds can be broken."


Jewish World

Jordan Warns Israel: Don’t Touch Mughrabi Bridge

(Israel National News) Jordan’s foreign minister warns Israel against demolishing the dangerous bridge which links the Western Wall to the Temple Mount


Israeli Economy

34% of factories to move activity abroad

(Ynet) Manufacturers Association survey shows only half of Israel's manufacturing activities expected to remain in country within two years.



Korzits back on top of windsurfing world

(Jpost) Israeli captures second career gold, with help from Davidovich; Zubari, Mashiah set.



Green NGO hosts 1st env'mt justice conference

(Jpost) The Environmental Justice Conference, the first of its kind in the country, was organized by Adam Teva V’Din – The Israel Union for Environmental Defense and was held in Beersheba


Multi-year program to curb air pollution launches

(Jpost) Environment Ministry unveils comprehensive plan which will save country half a billion shekels each year, according to ministry.


Science, Technology and Development

Schalit most-Googled term in Israel 2011

(Jpost) Other popular Google searches include Big Brother, Syria, Iran, Libya, iPhone5, and Hapoel Tel Aviv.


Prof. Shechtman receives Israel's 10th Nobel Prize

(Ynet) Israeli chemistry professor receives prestigious award from Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf for discovering 'quasicrystals'; at formal dinner banquet he says 'it is our duty as scientists to promote education, rational thinking and tolerance'


Israel sets its sights on the moon

(Israel Hayom) President Shimon Peres helps unveil an Israeli project to get an unmanned spaceship to the moon by 2014. "Technology is the strongest, smartest and boldest thing we possess. It is time to fly the Israeli flag on the moon," the president says.



Op-Eds and Opinion Pieces from the Israel Press

Ma'ariv says that, "A bunch of religious anarchists broke into the base of the IDF Ephraim Brigade.  It was exactly for such incidents that the open-fire orders were enacted, which define what constitutes a danger and what not.  Breaking into an army base falls within the definition of a terrorist event that requires use of the procedure for stopping suspects, which could end in shooting."  The author, the security coordinator for the Jewish community of Eli in Samaria, believes that, "If we do not want the State of Israel to be taken over by a small bunch of extremists and descend into anarchy, we must not allow the law to be enforced selectively.  It cannot be that we are more stringent or more lenient with rioters from a certain group on the basis of religion, race, sex or political opinion.  The law in the State of Israel must be enforced wisely and equally, against everyone."

Yisrael Hayom declares that, "Hundreds of thousands of Israelis in Judea and Samaria relate to the anarchists exactly as do the rest of the [country's] citizens – as a dangerous group which must be dealt with immediately.  The heads of the Yesha Council again condemn these acts.  The IDF is us, and any harm to it is harm to us all."