Newsletter : 7fax0701.txt
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>JN July 1, 1997, Vol. 5, No. 118
Secret Meeting in Eilat
An unprecedented secret meeting of defense experts and
scientists took place last week in Eilat. Convened by the U.S
Defense Department in the southern Israeli port and beach resort of
Eilat, the meeting was called to discuss the "state of things to
come" in missile warfare. Representatives of the Israel Air Force,
Navy defense establishment and the CIA were present.
Jordan Court Told Soldier Might be Mentally Ill
Independent medical psychologists have told a military court
that a Jordanian soldier charged with killing seven Israeli
schoolgirls might be mentally ill. Two psychologists also
questioned the medical soundness of evidence by military
psychologists who concluded Pvt. Ahmed Daqamsa was not mentally ill
but had "an anti-social personality disorder."
Daqamsa has said he was praying at Baqoura on the day of the
shooting last March, when the Israeli girls started laughing at
him. Witnesses said he fired off around 70 bullets, killing seven
Muslim Censors Rip Belly Dancer's Costume
By Jessica Jones (VOA-Cairo)
Most belly dancers in Egypt perform their centuries-old art dressed
in variations of a traditional two-piece costume. And when one of
the country's most popular dancers recently switched to wearing
shorts and bikini tops, there was an indignant response from
Egypt's artistic community.
One of Egypt's most famous belly dancers, known only as Dina,
performs in an elite Cairo nightclub several times a week. She
is backed by a 40-piece orchestra, and traditional Egyptian
singers. But some of her fans who stay up until 3 a.m. say her
slinky form-fitting outfits are the real attraction.
However, some believe Dina's unorthodox choice of costumes has
gone too far. She recently received a warning from the Egyptian
Department of Artistic Censorship for improper dress and demeanor.
Reports say Dina was found guilty of wearing shorts, though she
claims it was actually a kind of skirt.
Still, Dina is quick to defend her style of dress. She says she
just does not want to look like everyone else. "I like to be more
different. I take the traditional and I put some change, like the
fashion and the color of the year, and the new colors, the new
materials. The traditional Bedla is no longer the same."
The news has sparked a controversy within Egypt's community of
dancers, musicians and artists. A well-known costume designer,
Ahmed Diaa el-Dine, now uses a site on the Internet and his English
language Eastern Dance Magazine to defend the traditional flowing
skirt and halter top worn by generations of performers.
He says the regular costume has a historical basis. But shorts do
not. Nor does a miniskirt. Hot pants, he says, are just not
El-Dine fears Dina's costumes could set a precedent for future
generations of dancers. That could kill the spirit of the ancient
dance, because, he says, Western products do not always mesh with
Other Egyptians say the real issue is that the dance should be
sensual but not seductive. Government censors reinforce that
notion by carefully delineating which parts of the body --
including the bellybutton -- can and cannot be shown. One of
Egypt's most successful dancers, Lucy, believes bellydancing is an
art form that should be subject to rules and restrictions so the
historical purity of the tradition is maintained.
She says she has not departed from the traditional outfit because
it is Eastern. It is the dance. These are the roots of the dance,
and what is without roots is meaningless. She says she has never
worn shorts, and will never wear them.
Even Dina, whose outfits are no longer so provocative, agrees
that the dance itself is more important than any costume. But
she claims it is not fair that government censors monitor only
bellydancers and not the Western women who perform in Cairo's
dimly lit cabarets.
She says Egyptians always end up paying for minor infractions of
the rules. "You go to jail. It's not (an) easy thing, maybe 15
days, or one month or six months. It's up to them. It's very
Costume designers say bellydancers in other countries always
request traditional two-piece outfits and work hard in their acts
to achieve an Eastern result. But Egyptian dancers, they say,
like to test the limits of propriety.
Lasers Produce Blood Vessels in Heart Muscle
For the first time in Israel, doctors at the heart surgery
department of the Carmel Medical Center in Haifa, employed lasers
during an operation to create new blood vessels on the heart
muscle. The method is also used abroad, with 80 percent success.
The lasers dig fine, narrow, channels into the heart muscle and
this provides it with an additional supply of oxygenated blood. The
channels do not leak blood outward but operate inside the heart.
This, in effect, creates new functioning blood vessels around and
in the heart.
The operation is used for patients whose coronary
arteries are blocked and cannot be reopened with angioplasty
balloons or bypassed. The Carmel Center, headed by Professor Gidon
Oretzky, treats 600 heart patients a year.
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