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Weekly News Items from the Israeli Press, May 3, 2012

 

Federation Projects in the Israeli Press

700 Miami Jews in Israel for biggest ever federation trip

(Ynet) Largest federation group to visit Israel in over a decade enjoys Independence Day celebrations as part of trip that took over two years to organize

 

Birthright 'baby boomers' head to Israel    

(Ynet) Studies carried out recently among US Jews indicate that only one in five has visited, or is planning to visit Israel.

 

JFNA Partners in the Israeli Press

Jewish Agency official warns of chaos as CFO resigns

(Haaretz) The sudden departure this month of the Jewish Agency's veteran chief financial officer, Yaron Neudorfer, is sending shock waves through the cash-strapped organization as it grapples with a severe budget deficit.

 

Israeli intern program helps North American college grads get a leg up

(Times of Israel) Masa Israel expects over 1,000 college graduates from North America to join a unique internship program in Israel.

 

Welfare and Social Issues

The cost of dignity

(Haaretz) Not even the court managed to nail down what it means for a person to live with dignity, or how the state should ensure that officially basic human right.

 

As Knesset tackles religion, expect things to get interesting

(Times of Israel) Meretz MKs are currently advancing a bill that would allow adopted grandchildren to automatically inherit their adoptive grandparents.

 

Civil Society

Israeli politics kicks into election mode

(Israel Hayom) Government has majority needed to dissolve 18th Knesset and call early elections for Sept. 4

 

Tal Law alternative: Barak says let IDF decide whom to draft

(Israel Hayom) Defense Minister Ehud Barak to propose "service for all" bill

 

Centrifuges, Palestinians, army service and cottage cheese — an election primer

(Times of Israel) As Netanyahu prepares to call early elections, a look at the key factors that will determine the result

 

Social Protests

May 1st Rally Reminiscent of Summer Social Protest

(Israel National News) A Tel Aviv rally in honor of International Workers’ Day turned into a call to bring back last summer’s social protest.

 

B. Shemesh residents hang flags after city refuses

(Jpost) Concerned over haredi reaction to Zionist symbols, municipality refuses to put up flags along main road for Independence Day.

 

Aliyah and Immigration

Aliyah − alive and kicking

(Haaretz) I urge the aliyah skeptics to come to Ben-Gurion Airport in July and August and watch the planes landing there filled with immigrants.

 

Religious Pluralism in Israel

Do the ultra-Orthodox want to be integrated into Jewish Israeli life?

(Haaretz) An inability to enforce compulsory IDF enlistment challenges Israel, both practically – as the burden of service is not equally shared – and theoretically – when a third of Israel's population does not following its laws.

 

Israel Slower To Welcome Converts

Over the past four months, 15 people who have converted in the Diaspora, through Diaspora rabbinates that Israel deems legitimate, have found themselves denied citizenship under the Law of Return

 

Jewish World

Israel's High Court affirms that thousands of Jewish conversions are kosher

(Haaretz) The High Court of Justice has affirmed the validity of thousands of conversions called into question by the Rabbinical Court of Appeals in 2008

 

Who is ‘haredi’

(Jpost) ‘I dream of shifting Israeli society to a culture in which no person has to define himself.’

 

Poll: 72% in favor of haredi recruitment

(Ynet) Survey finds that 51% of Israeli Jews support compromise that would sway haredim to enlist; 35% say sector should be forced to serve.

 

Education

Students compete in 49th annual Bible Contest

(Jpost) Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar opens Independence Day event, speaks of connection between Jewish people and Bible.

 

Arts and Culture

Neshama Carlebach voices new ‘Hatikva’ at ‘Post’ Conference

(Jpost) The new ‘Hatikva,’ which features some of the original lyrics and some new lyrics, was released for Independence Day.

 

Science, Technology and Development

TAU wins energy excellence award

(Times of Israel) Israel names Tel Aviv University's Renewable Energy Center a 'Center of Research Excellence'

 

First full artificial heart transplant in Israel

(Jpost) Doctors at Beilinson give 63-year-old man who suffered from severe cardiac insufficiency and developed organ failure artificial heart.

 

Op-Eds and Opinion Pieces from the Israel Press

Ma'ariv discusses the upcoming elections and believes that, "The inability of the Center-Left parties to unite in a substantial political bloc ensures that the Right and the ultra-orthodox will continue to hold the reins."

 

Yisrael Hayom endorses new, stricter anti-smoking regulations.  The author says, "As the cliché says, I am prepared to fight and to man the barricades over the right of smokers to smoke but in the same breath, I am convinced of our right, the non-smokers (and we are the majority), not to become walking ashtrays when we are in public places."