Israel News

Striving For Normalcy, Under Fire

Assistant Managing Editor
SDEROT, ISRAEL — When Gabi Baron, an 11-year-old resident of Kibbutz Niram, plays outside, he has a set of instructions from his mother in case of a Kassam rocket attack. “If I’m in front of a house, go inside, even if it’s a stranger,” recites Gabi. If there’s no house nearby, “go behind a tree.” In the absence of a tree or a car, Gabi knows to “lie on my belly and cover my head,” as he had done less than an hour earlier during a recent attack.

Treating The Tsunami Trauma

Staff Writer
More than a million Sri Lankans have been affected by the Dec. 26 tsunami disaster, and more than half of them were children. Thousands have lost one or both parents, or are suffering from post-traumatic stress. But in a country of 18 million, there are few psychiatrists, and even fewer trained to treat children.

Coordination Elusive As Giving Soars

Staff Writer
From million-dollar fund-raising operations at national organizations to toy drives and cookie-baking by yeshiva girls, the Jewish community here is increasing its response to the tsunami devastation in Southeast Asia as the scale of dead, missing, homeless and destitute continues to unfold. The American Jewish World Service fund on Wednesday had reached $3.25 million, and numerous other organizations and schools pitched in by starting drives or steering donations toward larger relief funds.

Major Push For Biotech Partnerships

Staff Writer
Seeing an area of unrealized potential, Israeli firms and trade officials are preparing a major push in marketing biotechnology partnerships with American companies. “Israel has tremendous potential in life sciences,” said David Rubin, Israel’s trade envoy to North America at a recent Manhattan conference exploring cooperative ventures. “We have the scientists and the means to do the work. In the next five to 10 years, we can capture a larger share of the international market.”

The Nuevo Coalition

Staff Writer
When Moshe Livne came to New York earlier this year, Israel’s new deputy consul general here set an unusual mission as one of his top priorities. “I want to work on relations with Latinos,” said the former ambassador to El Salvador, who is fluent in Spanish. Latinos, the fastest-growing ethnic segment in New York, are as disparate in location throughout the five boroughs as in their cultures, economic class and lands of origin.

Centerís Great White Hope

Associate Editor

The likely victor in next weekís Knesset election, no matter the final numbers, is the Israeli political party Kadima, which recognized that an exhausted people wanted something other than ideology in a country where ideology has hung like smog.

The Writing On The Wall

Assistant Managing Editor

What do Israel’s left-wingers and right-wingers, religious zealots and punk rockers, sports fans and cynics have in common?

All of them apparently feel quite comfortable strolling up to a wall in a public place with a can of spray paint and leaving behind their sometimes quite elaborate messages.

Fresh Rift On Jews’ Giving To Israel

Assistant Managing Editor
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s denial last week that northern Israel is in dire need of aid — the very picture painted by Jewish federations that have raised millions in war relief funds — is etching the latest chapter in the complicated tale of diaspora philanthropy. The United Jewish Communities’ Israel Emergency Campaign has raised some $260 million to address economic and social service needs created by the month-long rain of Hezbollah rockets last summer and the continuing shelling of Sderot from Gaza in the south.

North Still Battling War Trauma

Assistant Managing Editor
Upper Galilee, Israel — With just weeks to go before she begins her military service, Shahaf Moreno is under pressure. Moreno, 18, who lives in Acco, didn’t do as well as expected on the civil studies portion of her matriculation exams last year, and so she’s sacrificed some summer fun for classes in the Third Half, a summer school program designed to prepare kids for a retest this week.

Fear Of Hamas Looms Over Statehood Bid

Staff Writer
The bloody end to a massive rally in Gaza Monday marking the third anniversary of Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat’s death is seen as underscoring the disunity of the Palestinian people whose aspirations for their own state are proving more and more elusive.
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