Newsletter : 3fax1231.txt
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The worldwide eclectic news staff of Israel Faxx wishes you a Happy New Year for
Using Garlic to Fight Cancer
Scientists from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot have developed a new
method to selectively kill cancer cells, leaving healthy ones intact. And it uses a
chemical occurring naturally in garlic.
The scientists of Weizmann's Biological Chemistry Department, Drs. Aharon Rabinkov,
Talia Miron and Marina Mironchick, working with Profs. David Mirelman and Meir Wilchek,
have successfully destroyed malignant tumors in mice using their newly developed method.
The key to the scientists' success lies in the development of a unique, two-step system
for delivering the cancer-wrecking chemical straight to the tumor cells.
Allicin, as the chemical is called, is the substance that gives garlic its distinctive
aroma and flavor. For many years, scientists studying allicin have known that it is as
toxic as it is pungent. It has been shown to kill not only cancer cells, but also the
cells of disease-causing microbes, and even healthy human body cells. Fortunately for our
body's cells, allicin is highly unstable, and breaks down quickly once ingested. However,
the rapid breakdown and undiscriminating toxicity presented twin hurdles to creating an
Now, the Weizmann scientists have solved both these problems by designing an ingenious
delivery method that works with the pinpoint accuracy of a smart bomb. Their findings were
reported in the December issue of Molecular Cancer Therapeutics.
While the team succeeded in blocking the growth of gastric tumors in mice, the
scientists note that the method could work for most types of cancer. The technique could
prove invaluable for preventing metastasis following surgery. "Even though doctors cannot
detect where metastatic cells have migrated and lodged themselves," says Mirelman, the
system developed at the Weizmann Institute would allow the toxic allicin to "chase them
down and destroy them anywhere in the body."
Israel Changes Route of West Bank Security Barrier
By Ross Dunn (VOA-Jerusalem)
Israel, acting under strong international pressure, says it is making changes to the
route of its West Bank security barrier to try to make life easier for the
Israeli officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that they plan to
alter the route of the controversial security barrier. Under the changes, Israel intends
to widen the opening in the barrier that links the Palestinian town of Qalqilyah to the
rest of the West Bank.
Under the original plan, Qalqilyah was faced with being enclosed by the barrier from
both the east and the west, making it an enclave. The motivation behind that version of
the plan was to allow Jewish settlers free movement between their communities and in the
direction of Israel.
No decision has yet been made to remove the barrier on the eastern side of Qalqilyah,
but a large opening will be cut into it, in a bid to give Palestinian residents greater
freedom of movement. Israeli commentators say the change has been prompted by the
continuing protests in the town against the project, which has attracted international
attention and harmed Israel's reputation abroad.
Israel also has dropped plans to encircle the Palestinian village of Baka al-Sharkiya
in a similar fashion. While agreeing to make such changes, Israel is still determined to
complete the barrier, which runs along and inside the West Bank. Israel says the project,
which consists of razor wire in some sections and concrete slabs in others, is already
stopping Palestinian suicide bombers from entering the Jewish state.
The Palestinian leadership claims the barrier is an attempt by Israel to seize more
territory and to unilaterally determine the borders of a future Palestinian state. Israel
insists the barrier does not constitute a new political boundary and that it can be
removed if and when there is a final peace agreement with the Palestinians.
Israeli Troops Raid Nablus
By Ross Dunn (VOA-Jerusalem)
Israeli forces have moved back into the West Bank city of Nablus, engaging in gun
battles with Palestinian militants and imposing a new curfew. Soldiers raided Nablus for
the second time in two weeks as part of ongoing efforts aimed at arresting wanted
Palestinian militants. The troops moved into the ancient quarter, or Old City, of Nablus,
where they ran into fierce resistance from Palestinian militants who opened fire on them.
The soldiers returned fire.
Israel has imposed a military curfew on the city center, forcing about 40,000 people to
stay in their homes. The latest raid occurred less than 24 hours after soldiers withdrew
from the city, ending a two-week operation in which they arrested dozens of suspected
Palestinian terrorists. The Israeli army says the raids against Nablus will continue as
long as, what it calls, the city's terrorist infrastructure remains intact.
The sweep has been one of the biggest by the Israeli army in recent months, reflecting
a determination to capture militants in what Israel sees as the absence of any effort by
the Palestinian Authority to confront armed Palestinian groups. The IDF has also been
operating with renewed vigor in the Gaza Strip.
In a two-day operation in the Rafah refugee camp last week, Israeli soldiers destroyed
a tunnel that had been used to smuggle weapons into Gaza from neighboring Egypt. At least
nine Palestinians were killed in the raid during exchanges of gunfire between militants
and the troops. A number of homes also were destroyed.
On Monday, Palestinian residents held demonstrations calling for an end to the Israeli
military incursions and the destruction of their homes. The unrelenting violence has
frozen efforts to implement the so-called Roadmap plan to end the bloodshed and grant
Palestinians full statehood by 2005.
To reach this goal, the plan calls for the dismantling and disarming of Palestinian
groups responsible for more than three years of attacks against Israelis.
Arab Knesset Member Compares IDF Soldiers to Nazis
Arab MK (Ta'al) Ahmed Tibi, a close associate of Yasir Arafat, compared IDF soldiers
monitoring the counter-terrorism partition fence to Nazis during WWII, Israel Radio
reported. Tibi reportedly made his remarks in Arabic in an el-Arabia interview.
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