Update Israel – Week of 30th June 2013 – Good News

injured-syrian    A Syrian war victim arriving at Ziv Medical Center. Israel’s good news, the highlights include Israeli researchers have discovered how to switch off alcohol dependency.  Israeli surgeons treat 4 Syrian children who were badly wounded in the civil war. Israel has appointed the first woman Ambassador to a Moslem country. Israeli software restores archaeological ruins on your smartphone screen. Only in Israel, start-ups donate part of their success to charitable causes. The Russian Bolshoi Opera makes its first ever visit to Israel. London marathon paraplegic celebrity Clare Lomas meets ReWalk’s inventors.

 

ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Alcohol addiction?  Forget it.  Researchers in Israel and San Francisco have been able to switch off a memory pathway in the brains of rats responsible for alcohol dependency.  Tests on humans are expected soon.  The results may also lead to the treatment of nicotine craving.
Repairing the faces of twins.  Surgeons at Haifa’s Ramban hospital treated two 14 year-old twins for similar defects: cleft palate and nose, and fused fingers. During the two three-hour operations, the doctors reconstructed both brothers’ upper palate.
Safer bone augmentation.  Israel’s RegeneCure has developed an innovative synthetic membrane for those needing dental implants.  Alternative animal-tissue-derived collagen membranes risk being contaminated from pathogens.  RegeneCure’s membrane also degrades slowly, giving the natural bone more time to regenerate.
Seeing Israel in a new light.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Field of Vision, a new series by photographer Vardi Kahana, documents the people touched by Eye from Zion, an Israeli organization that provides free ocular medical treatment to needy populations around the world.
This is how Israeli doctors save Syrian lives.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Over the past few weeks I have been reporting only headline stories of wounded Syrians being treated in Israeli hospitals.  Here is an amazing in-depth feature about what happens on the front lines (at the border and at the hospital).
Israel’s Brain exhibition.  One of the exhibits at the Presidential Conference in Jerusalem spotlighted on Israel’s top research into the human brain.
More medical research for children.  The Hebrew University is to establish a center for pharmaceutical research and treatment of children.  Its focus includes incurable genetic diseases, building new models for testing drugs for children and synthesizing new molecules suited for children, despite being unprofitable.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Gaza weekly deliveries:  In the week ending 22nd June 2013, 1216 trucks carried 32,660 tons of goods into Gaza from Israel through the Kerem Shalom crossing.  They included 324 trucks of food and 391 trucks of construction materials.
Gaza farmers transported to Tel Aviv conference.  The Israeli army invited and facilitated the transport of 50 Palestinian Arab farmers from Gaza to an agricultural conference in Tel Aviv. The goal was to help boost agricultural output in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip
An emotional meeting.  10-year-old Yakub Ivachisad, the Palestinian Arab boy who received one of the kidneys from Israeli boy Noam Naor, received a visit in Schneider Children’s hospital from Noam’s parents.   Noam’s mother, said, “To see Yakub today is very exciting. I wish him only health, a full and speedy recovery.
Muslims who want to defend Israel.  Brothers Milad and Muhammad Atrash, Arab Muslims from the Galilee, volunteered to defend their country by enlisting in the IDF.  Muhammad has just sworn allegiance to the State of Israel, and in two weeks his brother Milad will start his officers’ training course.
An ordinary day in Israel.  Read about a typical day for Israeli Diana Bletter, interacting with Muslims, Christians, Druze, Ethiopian Jews and a Baha’i woman.  How many different people have you spoken to today?
Four Syrian children treated in Israel.  A 16-year-old boy suffering from gunshot wounds, a 13 year-old girl and two boys aged nine and fifteen are the latest Syrian casualties to be taken to Israel hospitals. The source for the final story is the Lebanese Daily Star – usually very anti-Israel. In total, Israel has treated over 100 Syrians.
Feeding the world.  Ms. Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), visited Israel for the first time.  MASHAV (Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation) is working with the WFP in South Sudan and alleviating the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa.
Arab countries fail to block an Israel sponsored UN conference  (Thanks to www.israelandstuff.com) Arab states have failed to block Israel from leading the UN Entrepreneurship for Development Debate in which Israel’s agriculture, solar energy and medical equipment were showcased for developing countries.
Israeli ambassador to Uzbekistan is a woman.  Carmela Shamir will soon begin her term as Israeli ambassador in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, making her the first female Israeli envoy to serve in a Muslim country.  Another woman, Hagit Mualem, will serve as the deputy ambassador in the Israeli embassy in Tashkent.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Sweet seedless Israeli peppers and more.  At Fresh AgroMashov 2013, Israel’s Zeraim Gedera presented its seedless sweet pepper “the Angello™”and its disease-resistant long-life seedless watermelon “the Fascination”.
Hello Doctor.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) For patients with complex medical conditions, Israeli-developed Hello Doctor is a new mobile application that organizes all your medical records. It makes sure you can easily navigate and access them, no matter how many different doctors or clinics you visit.
The magic touch.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s N-trig has announced that its pen and touch controller powers Sony’s VAIO® Duo 13 Ultrabook. N-trig’s DuoSense provides a single sensor for both pen and touch.
Bringing archeology to life.  (Thanks to NoCamels) Israeli startup Architip’s app will show an image of what a site used to look, or informative text, when a smartphone is held up to the landscape. Point it at a faded mosaic and Architip displays it in full color, with all its drawings intact.
Chicago wants Israeli water technology.  Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel plans to purify his city’s water using new technologies developed by the University of Chicago and Ben-Gurion University.
Aiming for the Moon.  Kfir Damari of Israel’s SpaceIL came to the downtown Jerusalem Startup Hub to make a presentation on his lunar exploration startup, Israel’s sole entrant in Google’s Lunar X competition, which offers a $30 million prize to whichever team’s craft can make it to the moon first.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Israeli pilot flies new Boeing to Tel Aviv.  Lufthansa’s First Officer, Israeli Yaniv Emanuel, flew the airline’s new Boeing 747-8 from Frankfurt to Tel Aviv.  The first arrival of the World’s longest commercial plane also marked the improvements to Ben Gurion airport to satisfy aviation regulations.
Record May for tourists to Israel.  May 2013 was a record-breaking month for tourism to Israel. The 336,000 visitor numbers were 5 percent higher than in May 2012. The total for 2013 so far is also a record 1.4 million.
European Life Sciences rush to work with Israel.  Over a dozen international delegations attended the 2013 BioMed show in Tel Aviv.  The German group was also visiting Israeli universities to seek cooperation in research projects.  The Italian delegation was looking to buy or invest in Israeli life science companies.
Israeli start-ups must give to charity.  Israel’s OurCrowd is the first Venture Capital Funding Organization to insist its portfolio companies donate a portion of equity to a charitable foundation.  Start-ups allocate shares to the non-profit Tmura.  If the start-up is taken-over, Tmura gives 90% of the share value to charitable projects.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT
Old house / new house.  Before David Cohen demolished his house, his daughter invited 85 Israeli artists to transform it, and raise money for children’s charities.
Russia’s Bolshoi Opera makes first visit to Israel.  For the first time, the Israeli Opera is hosting the Bolshoi Opera House from Moscow, one of the world’s leading opera houses and the biggest in Russia.  It will be performing Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece, “Yevgeny Onegin,” perhaps the most “Russian” opera of all times.
Four prizes for Jerusalem film school.  Filmmakers from Jerusalem’s Ma’aleh School of Television, Film & the Arts won 4 prizes at the International Student Film Festival in Tel Aviv.
A long White Night.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Tel Aviv’s 10th annual White Night featured theater, dance, public sing-alongs, operatic arias, classical music, jazz, rock, alternative music, video displays, artists, art sales, storytellers, literature, philosophy, beach volleyball, yoga, folk dancing, ballroom dancing, fashion events, an accessories fair, shopping, street parades, club parties and tours.  What, you wanted more?
Israeli wins International chess tournament.  Israeli chess grandmaster Boris Gelfand took first place in the Tal Memorial international competition in Moscow.  Gelfand was undefeated on six points, ahead of the current World Number 1 Magnus Carlsen.  The current world champion, Viswanathan Anand came ninth.
THE JEWISH STATE
UK paraplegic meets ReWalk inventors.  Claire Lomas, the young British paraplegic woman who completed the London marathon wearing an Israeli invention that enabled the use of her legs, has visited the Jewish state to meet the Argo Medical team behind the technology.
Look what they’ve found in Jerusalem.  More proof of Jewish settlement in Israel’s capital 2000 years ago.
That’s a lotta bottle.  Israelis recycled over 200 million 1.5 liter plastic bottles in 2012 – a seven percent increase on the previous year.  The 29 bottles-per-person average was easily exceeded by yours truly, who personally picked up at least one discarded bottle every day and deposited it into Netanya’s recycling bins.
Netanya is the coolest.  Netanya is the only large town in Israel that preserved its original cliffs, instead of cutting them down to the sea level. As a result, Netanya’s homes are built at 40-50 feet above the sea level, endowing the city with a lovely, cooling breeze most days of the summer.
“This is The Land”.  On her first visit to Israel recently, Dr. Qanta Ahmed saw the country ‘as God sees it.’ The Muslim physician, and daughter of Pakistani immigrants to the US, was smitten by the natural beauty, history and modern achievements that came into vivid focus on a helicopter tour of the Jewish State.
High flyer.  Israel’s new pilots included 21-year-old Lt B who made Aliya from New Jersey in 2009.  “I knew from a young age that Israel was an amazing country, and that I was destined to fall in love with it,” he said.
The SuperMoon over Jerusalem.  The Moon came to its closest point of the year to Israel last week.