Monday, March 26, 2012

4 Days to the Global March on Jerusalem

In follow up to the factsheet the Global March to Jerusalem, with March 30 drawing closer, a paper has been prepared of Talking Points on the Global March to be used in the event that events turn violent and garner major media attention.

A copy of the Talking Points is available here -

Please share these Talking Points in email groups, Facebook and Twitter and use these Talking Points in any way you want including to create your own talking points.

Further, there is an informational website at with a regularly updated blog and a useful resources section at with links to the growing list of articles that are being written about the Global March to Jerusalem.

The Lebanese "Daily Star", is reporting that the organizers of the Land Day march by Palestinians decided Friday to change the route of the procession so that it concludes at Beaufort Castle, east of Nabatiyeh instead of the Israeli-Lebanese border, as was originally announced.

The sources attributed the change of route to the organizers' desire to avoid any violation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701, which aims to prevent Lebanese-Israeli friction in border areas.

They added that organizers do not want to strain their relationship with the Lebanese army or the U.N. Interim Forces in Lebanon.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Another Medical Miracle at the Wolfson Medical Center

A medical Miracle at the Wolfson Medical Center in Holon

Doctors were able to save the life of a 14 year old girl from Angola after they took out from her chest a 14 cm Tumor that pressed her heart and threatened her life. The tumor weighs half a kilo and it pushed her heart to the side, under her arm.

Only a few similar cases are known in the whole world.Elisa Manuel Antonio was first diagnosed during the Save a Child’s Heart (SACH) medical mission In Angola last October. Elisa was examined by senior cardiologist Dr. Alona Raucher, who saw such a huge tumor for the first time in her career. “I was shocked when I first saw her”, says Dr. Raucher, “and immediately understood we need to bring her to Israel to try and save her life”.

Elisa was brought to Israel by SACH. On March 19, 2012, after hours of complicated surgery, the SACH team managed to take out the tumor from Elisa’s chest and saved her life. Elisa is now recovering at the Wolfson Medical Center. She will stay in Israel another month and once the doctors are sure she is well enough, she will return home to Angola. The SACH medical team will continue and follow up on Elisa’s condition through the local cardiologist in Luanda and will examine her once a year when going to Angola on a medical mission.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

American Textbooks Adopt the Arab Narrative

Thirty-eight textbooks used in American schools were reviewed recently by ACT for American Education. There are key problematic areas in the treatment of Islam in 6th through 12th grade American textbooks. The full 229 page report reveals a pattern of historical revisionism, omissions, and bias in the presentation of all aspects devoted to Islam in these textbooks.

Differences in presentation of key problematic areas lie primarily in the nature of the wording or the degree of historical revisionism, omission, bias, sanitization, and misrepresentation. A shortened 31 page Executive summary can be read at

The list that follows highlights some of the problematic areas identified in the treatment of Islam as a world religion and of events in past and recent history when Islam and the West have come into conflict. Please note that not all of the points listed below are addressed in this Executive Summary, but they are all covered in the full Report.

· The doctrine of jihad is omitted, incorrectly defined, inaccurately described, or understated.
· Faulty description of women's rights under Islam: The oppressive and discriminatory nature of Shari’a law with respect to women is omitted, mischaracterized, or understated.
· Omission or minimization of the Islamic slave trade, in sharp contrast with what is typically an extensive and appropriately critical examination of the Atlantic slave trade operated by Europeans.
· Aggrandizement and elevation of Muhammad's character that is contradicted by accepted historical facts.
· Misrepresentation of Shari’a Law in such areas as its applicability to non-Muslims and the separation of Church and State.
· Faulty historical narrative of the Crusades. Muslims in the Holy Land are commonly depicted as innocent victims of unprovoked aggression who were defending “their” lands against Christian invaders, rather than what is historically accurate:
(1) that Muslims invaded and conquered the Holy Land centuries prior to the Crusades;
(2) that Christians and Jews were victims of Muslim conquest and aggression centuries prior to the launching of the Crusades; and
(3) that the Crusades were launched to wrest back control of the Holy Land from the Muslim
invaders and conquerors.
· Chronological revisionism of the historical development of Judaism, Christianity
and Islam which incorrectly portrays Islam as preceding Judaism and Christianity and the Muslims/Arabs as the indigenous people in the Holy Land, resulting in
the delegitizimation of Israel.
· Omission of the fact that the United Nations created a two-state partition for Palestine, one for the Jews and one for the Arabs.
· Omission of the fact that the Arabs refused to accept the offer of an independent Arab state contained in the 1947 United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine.
· Omission of the fact that the PLO’s recognition of Israel’s right to exist was and remains a verbal recognition only, contradicted by the unrevised PLO charter.
· Inaccurate claim that most Middle Eastern terrorist groups have roots in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
· Omission of the fact that Islamic Jihadists target Americans not only for their support of Israel but also for what they consider the “decadent nature” of Western way of life that threatens the spread of Islam throughout the world.
· Failure to identify the terrorists who perpetrated the September 11, 2001 attacks on America as Muslims or Islamic Jihadists.
· Failure to explain why the Islamic Jihadists targeted the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and to identify the fourth target as the White House.

With regard to the techniques used to implement the historical revisionism common in these textbooks, some are blatant and obvious, while others are subtle and deceptive. Three articular categories of techniques stand out:
(1) Errors of omission, in which information crucial to gaining an understanding of the topic is left out: e.g., omission of the historical fact that the Arabs refused the offer of an independent Palestinian state as part of a two-state solution proposed by the United Nations in 1947.
(2) False statements or claims, presentation of facts that are demonstrably false and/or unsupported by historical or other evidence: e.g., the false assertion that Islam has historically been tolerant of Jews and Christians.
(3) Partial truths, or the inclusion of some facts while omitting others that might be quite relevant to interpreting and understanding the issues at hand: e.g., asserting that under Islam women had certain “rights” and/or “spiritual equality”, while omitting the facts regarding the many restrictions and legal disabilities imposed upon women in the Qur’an and under Islamic Shari’a law.

Saudi Arabia’s plan, implemented in the mid-1970s, focused on changing how America looked at the Arabs and the Middle East. It focused as well on undermining American support for Israel. Islamist revisionism of Middle East history grew out of this plan, which has without a doubt significantly influenced the material in today’s textbooks.

Perhaps the senior editors who work for the textbook publishing houses do not know the history. Perhaps they check only for spelling and grammatical errors but not for historical inaccuracies and bias. Perhaps they have accepted, with little criticism or examination, material that has been provided them by Muslim organizations, such as the CIE, that lobby publishing houses.

Perhaps these inaccuracies reflect the biases of the writers and editors. Perhaps it is a combination of all of the above. Whatever the reason, the errors must be corrected so that history is recorded accurately and passed on to generations of students who must learn from the past if they are to become the leaders of the future. They can only learn from the past if the history that they study is accurate and unbiased, if the history they receive is “education” rather than “indoctrination.”

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Israel passes US, Europe in bottle recycling

From Jerusalem Post by SHARON UDASIN 03/15/2012

In total, Israel collected about 77% of all beverage containers in 2011, exceeding the government’s target of 73%. Israelis recycled 50 percent of the country’s plastic bottles in 2011, overtaking Europe and the United States, with figures of 48% and 29%, respectively, the ELA recycling company reported.

While the country only recycled about 16,000 tons of plastic PET bottles in 2010, the 2011 figures reached about 20,000 tons, according to ELA.

In total, Israel collected about 77% of all beverage containers – plastic and glass – requiring deposit in 2011, exceeding the government’s target of 73% and amounting to about 600 million beverage containers, ELA said. Families recycled about 41% of their total beverage containers in the same year, also surpassing a target of 35% and equivalent to about 300 million beverage containers. This week, the four billionth such beverage container was deposited.

“A year since the Packaging Law came into force – we succeeded in surpassing the goals set for us by the Environmental Protection Ministry,” said Nehama Ronen, chairwoman of ELA.

Through recycling efforts that have been everincreasing in the past 10 years, the public has returned to itself about NIS 1.04 billion worth of bottles, ELA reported. In the past year alone, 140 municipalities and regional councils across the country – including 20 new participants – installed about 4,400 new recycling bins, bringing the country’s total number of bins to about 15,000, according to ELA data. Bnei Brak alone went from having only seven bins to installing another 400.

ELA attributes much of the recycling triumphs of late to a massive public relations campaign that reached the public throughout the past year, during which the number of those refusing to recycle at all fell from 14% to 9%. A recent study conducted by an external company called Geocartografia found that in addition to the 62% of the population that already had recycled, another 11% of respondents indicated that they began recycling bottles after they heard about the campaign.

For the full story with pictures see

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Israel Aid Group Continues to Help Japanese

(Sendai, Japan) As Japan prepares to commemorate 1 year since the devastating March 11th, 2011 earthquake and Tsunami, IsraAID<> continues to support and rehabilitate the population of Northern Japan's Tohoku region. Over the past year, its professional post-trauma training courses, and its community development programs have greatly expanded.

Initially focused around the teachers of a single school, the organization today reaches hundreds of professionals and through them, thousands of people from 30 different groups across 8 communities of the Miyagi and Fukushima Prefectures.

IsraAID arrived in Japan less than four days after the earthquake and tsunami, and since then, the organization and its projects have grown and matured to reflect the changes on the ground.

In the first stages, when Tohoku was a ravaged ruin, IsraAID helped clean-up destroyed houses, rebuilt damaged buildings, open child safety centers, and distributed emergency aid to the tens of thousands of survivors and displaced people living in shelters.

As time progressed, and rebuilding efforts began, IsraAID shifted to focus on the loss and trauma suffered by millions.

From a simple art activity in a shelter, it became evident that the children and teachers taking part were experiencing stress after going through the trauma of the disaster and that they needed tools to help them cope. The government and organizations were cleaning and rebuilding their homes, others were donating supplies, but very few were helping them through the shock of having the sea rise up and swallow your entire lives.

In Israel, post-trauma is unfortunately a well known phenomena. Decades of regional conflict have exposed a significant portion of the population to frequent traumatic events. As a result, the development of home-grown coping techniques has made Israel a world leader in Post Trauma treatment.

IsraAID began bringing experienced practitioners from Israel with expertise in different types of therapy (verbal and non-verbal methods) to work with the people of Watari and help them cope and heal. Word quickly spread, and teachers and city officials introduced the organization to other communities, endorsing the project as "groundbreaking", one that "everyone should take part in" and that can benefit "anyone affected by the disaster of March 11th".

Today, IsraAID works with many different groups including children, mothers, and Japanese professionals (counselors, nurses, social workers and teachers). IsraAID's therapists are training the Japanese professionals, and local community support groups in therapeutic techniques and exercises that can be replicated in different contexts.

In recent months, IsraAID's work has expanded to include residents of the Temporary Housing Areas in Watari, Ishinomaki and Iwanuma. These at-risk communities are composed of fragile and displaced families from all over the affected area.

IsraAID teams are training local leaders, organizations, and city officials to alleviate stress and help the residents cope with their difficult situation.

In 2012, IsraAID will expand its activities to include a growing number of communities, a new youth leadership training program, as well as many other planned activities in Tohoku.

IsraAID works in close partnership on all its programs with local Japanese government and municipalities and with Japanese partner organizations and is committed to the people of Japan, and will continue to support their efforts rehabilitate and rebuild for a healthy and prosperous future.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Young Environmental Ambassadors

A new program creating young environmental ambassadors through the Bloomfield Science Museum in Jerusalem is training several hundred third- through sixth-graders to be stewards of Jerusalem’s ecological future.

Jerusalem of old - and new - already boasts some very sustainable elements, from narrow car-less streets in the Old City to pedestrian promenades and a new light rail system.

Most residents live in apartments, which are much “greener” than single-family dwellings that take up land, and, with smaller living spaces, Jerusalemites tend to do more with much less stuff. However “green” Jerusalem may already be, there are layers of society that have absolutely no awareness of the worldwide environment movement. Without this awareness, water and energy are being wasted, and plastic and paper are not being recycled.

The new program at the museum takes 300 children and radically changes their knowledge about environmental issues in their community and the world at large.

Change is in the air

A visit to the museum includes a tour of pavilions showcasing Israeli innovation, much of which is based on renewable energy ideas or clean technologies. Other pavilions, also open to general admission visitors, point out the environmental angle in many of the other displays. It was a museum-wide decision to build environmentalism into existing exhibits, says Brezner, rather than create one exhibit specifically on the environment.

Having taught in New York, Brezner says that Israelis and Jerusalemites in particular have a lot to learn. But even after only three years of running various environmental programs through the museum, she can already see change in the schools where she teaches science. Under her guidance, the children learn the importance of water conservation, energy savings, and how and why one should recycle. The program also takes the kids to the Hebrew University campus, where they learn about solar research being done there. As other countries have found, educating the children can broadly affect an entire household and even an entire community, Brezner believes.