Newsletter : 4fax0203.txt
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Temple Mount Tour Guide Course Offered
A senior officer in the Jerusalem Police Department reports that ever since the opening
of the Temple Mount to Jews four months ago, some 10,000 people have visited the holy site
- including 4,000 who have done so according to Halakhic [Jewish legal] guidelines. In
light of the growing demand, the "El Har HaMor" Temple Mount organization is sponsoring a
course for Temple Mount tour guides. The course instructs tour guides how to lead groups
at the holy site within the boundaries of halakhah [Jewish law], guided by rabbinical
rulings on the matter.
Sharon Starts Preparations for Relocating Gaza Settlers
By Ross Dunn (VOA-Jerusalem) & IsraelNationalNews.com
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Monday that he has begun preparations for the removal
of 17 Jewish settlements from the Gaza Strip. Sharon said the plan is part of a long-term
vision in which he believes no Jews would remain in the territory.
Sharon said the planned removal of 17 settlements is just the first phase of a broader
plan, under which all of the estimated 7,500 Jews in the Gaza Strip would be
The prime minister, speaking at a meeting of his Likud Party, said he is, working on
the assumption that in the future there would not be any Jews remaining in Gaza. He gave
no timetable for the implementation of his plan. According to Sharon, the first step would
be to ask for the backing of the settlers, some of who, he says, are third-generation
residents of the territory.
He said he would ask the settlers to voluntarily relocate to areas inside Israel and
those with farms would be re-established in agricultural areas. He did not say what the
government would do if the settlers refused to leave the area of their own free will.
Sharon said the 17 settlements earmarked under the first phase of the plan are those
Israel has decided it would not want to keep even under a final peace agreement with the
Palestinians. He said he has ordered officials to start preparing for the relocation of
He told Ha'aretz that he intends to present his plan to President George Bush later
this month during a visit to Washington. He said that one of the issues he intends to
raise with Bush is the possibility of the U.S. administration providing financial support
for the evacuation of Jewish settlements.
At least one Knesset Member of the Likud, Ehud Yatom, said that he would prefer to go
to new elections - i.e., topple his own party's government - rather than support such a
plan. Sharon acknowledged that his plan would not be easy to implement: "We are talking of
a population of 7,500 people. It's not a simple matter. We are talking of thousands of
square kilometers of hothouses, factories and packing plants. People there who are
third-generation. The first thing is to ask their agreement, to reach an agreement with
the residents. To move thousands of dunams of hothouses, educational institutions,
thousands and thousands of vehicles - it's not a quick matter, especially if it's done
'New Information' on Ron Arad Proves Sterile
Dramatic reports about possible remains of missing navigator Ron Arad are sweeping
Israel - while still leaving much confusion in their wake. It was reported Monday that a
number of weeks ago, Hizbullah sent one or several bone fragments to Israel, apparently
belonging to Arad. After careful checking, however, Israeli experts reached the
conclusion that "most of them" do not belong to Ron Arad. It is possible that the tests
have not been completed yet.
Arad's Phantom jet was shot down in Lebanon in October 1986; the pilot was flown to
safety under fire, holding on to the bottom of an Israeli helicopter in a spectacular
rescue operation. Arad, however, parachuted down and was immediately captured by members
of the Amal militia. He was transported to Beirut and held by an extreme Shiite
organization, and was later sold to Iranian-backed forces.
Israel reportedly feels that Hizbullah sent the wrong remnants as an "honest mistake."
Israel is further encouraged about Iran's active, if hidden, role in the process. It has
long been believed that Arad has been held in Iran.
The prisoner/hostage deal that most people thought had been completed last week
actually has two more parts. In the first of the two, Hizbullah is to provide Israel with
definite information about Ron Arad, in exchange for the release of Lebanese terrorist
Samir Kuntar, the murderer of the Haran family in 1979. In the last part of the deal,
Israel and Hizbullah are to enter into negotiations for the return of Ron Arad, dead or
alive. Israel is also expected to provide information on four Iranian diplomats who were
apparently killed in Lebanon 20 years ago; Israel says it has no further information on
The Importance of Israel
By Roy Sasson (Commentary) email@example.com (University of Florida)
I was born in Israel, and moved to the states at the young age of six. I've gone back
to visit several times since, however my most recent trip allowed me to look at Israel
through a completely different perspective.
Over the past two weeks, I embarked on a memorable trip that has left an imprint in my
life. Eighty students including myself from some of the most prestigious universities in
the U.S...were invited to attend a trip to Israel to educate us in respect to the
technology and business within the country. My expectation was simply 'another free trip
to Israel.' I had no idea what I was in for.
Prior to the trip, my perception was that Israel was practically a 3rd world country
way behind its time, only a source of violence and turmoil. I saw first hand that Israel
is in fact one of the major reasons as to why our modern world has become what it is
today. Our trip was comprised of visits to top notch Universities, biotechnology
companies, an aircraft
development company, the stock exchange, meetings with venture capitalists, economists,
businessmen, entrepreneurs, and prestigious professors. Some of the brightest students
today had the opportunity to listen, interact, and most importantly question, some of the
most amazing developments in technology.
We witnessed these developments first hand, and got a chance to have them explained,
not by their low level representatives, but by the actual scientists, professors, and
business men themselves, and I have to say, it
was nothing short of inspiring.
Let's just list the facts. Eighty percent of biotechnology in the entire world comes
from Israel... I'm talking about technologies that will revolutionize the world. One such
account was a biotechnology company who will in three months time be approved by the FDA
to perform operations to remove tumors without even penetrating the skin! The new mobile
centrino processor, a technology developed in Israel, powers every laptop that you use
from now on. A 3D face recognition technology was recently developed here (to combat
terrorism) that is so sophisticated it can tell apart identical twins.
Teva Pharmaceuticals developed the most effective drug to counter Parkinson's disease.
Israel is home to a pill that when taken, captures images inside of the body. File formats
such as gif and zip files that you use everyday, developed here. Smart cards for credit
cards, the chips in your digital cameras. It is in large part due to Israel that the
internet is where it is today. Many of the problems that we were facing on the internet in
regards to communication, bandwidth, and security, had already been implemented in the
Israeli army. The first Instant messaging software, the first firewall...the list is
Israel is the world leader in environmental research, high-tech, and the arts... Not
surprisingly, over 50 percent of Israel's economy is driven by technology. There are
various reasons for this; their local market is only 6 million... So when they develop
these companies, technologies, and advances, they are built with the hopes and aspirations
of making a difference in the world. It is a country where the entrepreneur has become the
hero, and making an impact on the world is not uncommon.
Israel is a country built around art and education. When an Israeli is successful it
does not simply affect his household, but the entire country, bringing up the economy,
honor to the country, and a strong sense of pride. Just imagine if our capitalist society
was focused on building companies and technologies to make a difference in the world,
instead of making a difference in our pockets. Imagine the possibilities with an
educational system enforcing the idea that you, the young and bright, can make a
difference in the world, in a country where we do not have to worry about violence and
terror as Israel does to maintain its survival.
One professor told of us of a story of a child who asked his father, serving in the
Israeli Army "why do you fight?" His father answered," I fight today so that your
generation will have the opportunity to learn and be educated so that you may be
engineers, so that the generation that follows yours may live to be poets and
I wasn't told to write this, and I'm not exactly the most eloquent of speakers. I am
writing this because I see it as my responsibility, privileged enough to have experienced
these things first hand. I tell you all of this not to show you the importance of Israel
from a Jewish perspective, but to show you the importance of Israel as part of the human
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