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Newsletter : 4fax1206.txt

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Does Saudi Arabia Have Nuclear Weapons?


According to a Nov. 28th UPI report, Iranian sources were quoted as saying that Saudi Arabia has access to nuclear weapons and technology, the Middle East Newsline reported. "The sources said Saudi Arabia and Pakistan signed an agreement in 2003 that stated Pakistan would assist the Arab kingdom in the deployment of nuclear weapons and missile delivery systems."

Egypt Frees Businessman Accused of Spying for Israel

By Larry James (VOA-Jerusalem) &

Six Egyptian students captured sneaking into Israel have been exchanged for an Israeli businessman convicted in Egypt as an Israeli spy. The exchange took place at the Taba border crossing near the southern Israeli city of Eilat.

Businessman Azzam Azzam, the Arab-Israeli who was freed, was reported to have flown from Eilat to an unspecified location for medical tests before returning to his family home in the north of Israel. His brother, Iftam Azzam, told Israel Radio he was overjoyed at the release. Azzam called on the whole state of Israel to "celebrate with us."

Azzam Azzam, a Druze, was arrested in Egypt in 1996, and convicted a year later on spying charges. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Israel has denied he was one of its agents. The six Egyptian students have been held in Israel since August for allegedly crossing the border illegally with the intention of kidnapping Israeli soldiers. Their arrest, along with the recent shooting of three Egyptian policemen along the Egyptian-Gaza border had soured relations between the two countries. The prisoner exchange follows meetings last week between Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Egypt's foreign minister and intelligence chief.

Azzam, 41, was managing an Israeli-Egyptian textile factory when he was arrested on charges of using invisible ink to convey information to Israel. Azzam said upon crossing the border into Israel, "Thank you very much. I love you very much. I am fortunate and proud to have been born in Israel."

Efforts to free Azzam have recently been rumored to be connected with attempts to release Jonathan Pollard from his American cell. Some of the reports also included the freeing of jailed terrorist murderer Marwan Barghouti as part of the deal. Pollard himself has stated he would refuse to be part of a deal to free Barghouti.

The Committee to Free Jonathan Pollard expressed its happiness for Azzam and his family, but added, "One must be very naive to believe that Sharon, who is able to obtain the release of Azzam from Egyptian prison, is not able to rescue Jonathan Pollard from our 'great friend,' the United States, headed by his 'good friend,' George Bush."

Along with news of the prisoner exchange came a report on Israel's Army Radio that efforts are being made to arrange a meeting between Sharon and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Senior Israeli officials were quoted as saying the mutual trust between the two countries increased considerably after Mubarak's recent statement that only Ariel Sharon can bring peace to the Middle East conflict.

In addition, Israel and Egypt have discussed closer cooperation to ensure a calm transition in the Gaza Strip after Israel's planned withdrawal from the area next year. Both sides agreed on the deployment of additional Egyptian forces on the Egyptian side of the border at Rafah. Egypt has also agreed to train Palestinian police. But Israel's former ambassador to Egypt, Shimon Shamir, told the radio he thinks the peace with Egypt will remain a "cold peace," so long as the Intifada continues, and Egyptian public opinion remains hostile toward Israel.

IDF Places Missile Battery Near Haifa

By Ha'aretz

The Israel Air Force on Sunday positioned a battery of Patriot anti-aircraft missiles in the Haifa Bay area, in order to intercept any Hizbullah-operated drones launched from Lebanon. The decision to place the battery was reached after a Hizbullah drone invaded Israeli airspace over the town of Nahariya last month. The Iranian-made drone managed to fly in Israeli skies for about 15 minutes, undetected by the IDF's anti aircraft forces.

Initially, IDF officials interpreted the incident as a Hizbullah muscle flex. Later, however, IDF Chief of Staff Moshe Ya'alon said that such a drone could theoretically carry 110 pounds of explosives, and could be used to attack targets in Israel. The new Patriot missile battery is meant to facilitate the detection and destruction of any drone in the future, in the event Hizbullah decided to launch one.

Rabbi Lau to European Jews: The End Is Near


European Jewry is nearing its end and the remaining communities should move to Israel, former Israeli chief Rabbi Meir Lau said in a statement released in Germany. "I see the end of the Diaspora of Jews in Europe," said Lau, a survivor of the Holocaust and a popular lecturer in America and Europe. He called on Israel "to prepare for a new phase of the spiritual and physical absorption of European Jewry before they consider emigrating to the Unites States or Australia [instead]."

He warned that rising anti-Semitism threatens the Jews of Europe, noting that anti-Semitism is on the rise in nearly every European country - expressed, among other ways, via extreme anti-Israel sentiments. Jewish Agency statistics have more than 1.14 million Jews in Europe, including more than a million in Western Europe.

Lau cited a report last week that 62% of Germans are tired of hearing about the Holocaust, and that 70% respond with anger when the subject of Nazi crimes is discussed. Only some 3,000 western European Jews have made Aliyah in each of the past two years.

Socialist Kibbutz Joins with Capitalist Wall Street


An Israeli kibbutz (socialist commune) is about to become the first of its kind to have one of its companies list its shares on the NASDAQ stock exchange. Globes news service reported that the company is Shamir Optical, one of several companies on Kibbutz Shamir, and is valued at $200 million.

Kibbutz Shamir, of the National Kibbutz Movement, is located in the Upper Galilee in northern Israel. Originally a collective farm, the kibbutz has two large factories, including 32-year-old Shamir Optical, which manufactures lenses. The 290 members of Shamir own the company equally.

Kibbutz Shamir still operates a communal dining hall, unlike many other cooperatives that have privatized their operations and are shifting away from collective facilities. Most of Israel's kibbutzim have moved away from practices such as the payment of equal salaries for different work. Shamir Optical's chief executive officer will receive stock options in the company - the only one with this privilege.

Like other kibbutzim that have shifted their investments from farming to manufacturing, most of Kibbutz Shamir's members work in the factories. Once completely agricultural, Kibbutz Shamir still farms 100 acres of fruits and vegetables.

Israel's "4th of July" Chanukah


Fireworks will highlight Tuesday night's planned display of the world's largest Menorah in Jerusalem. The electric Menorah will be displayed near the Center One shopping center, adjacent to Jerusalem's central bus station. The traditional Menorah holds eight candles that symbolize the twin miracles of a small amount of oil that burnt for eight days and the Jews' victory over Greek invaders and 2,000 years ago. A ninth candle is used to light the other candles, which Jewish law prohibits to be used other than for enjoyment.

The 65-foot wide electric menorah has nine branches, each one more than 60 feet tall, and the menorah's 1,800 light bulbs will produce more light than all the lights on the highway from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, according to a Jerusalem city spokesman. Lights during Chanukah will be lit along a "Route of Light" from the Knesset, the Supreme Court, Shrine of the Book, King David Hotel, the Old City wall and Safra Square.

And in the United States Postal Service, for the first time in eight years, has issued a new stamp for the upcoming Chanukah holiday. Depicted on the stamp is a wooden dreidel (Chanukah top) on which is painted a Jerusalem-type landscape, set on a background of the letters of the word Hanukkah (sic).

The last US stamp that featured the Chanukah holiday was a joint Israeli-US issue, in 1996. That stamp, like the newest one, is a 37-cent issue; the Israeli version is 2.5 shekels. It features a drawing of a Chanukah menorah with burning candles of various colors.

Kissinger Proposes an Imposed Solution with Land Swaps

By Israel Insider

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, writing in the Washington Post Friday, linked the success of the United States in facilitating a stable regime in Iraq with its ability to engineer a settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He wrote that if America falters, few Arab leaders would increase their peril by supporting the adjustments in the Palestinian position that a settlement requires. If next month's elections in Iraq led to enhanced legitimacy and security improved, Arab support might well be forthcoming, he added.

Kissinger also said the Iraq and Palestinian problems are two sides of the same coin, a relationship which forces all parties to make major decisions to reach a settlement. He wrote "Israel must recognize that demographic and technological trends make procrastination increasingly precarious. Palestinian leaders must understand that if they reject compromise, they doom their people to another generation of suffering and frustration.

"European leaders need to understand that they contribute most effectively to peace by counteracting the illusion that America is the deus ex machina of negotiations that delivers the maximum Arab program without any sacrifice on the Palestinians' part. They should foster the recognition that both sides need to make major concessions."

According to Kissinger, the step-by-step bilateral process is no longer useful. "Roadmaps" have been negotiated only if when phrased in language so general and ambiguous as to permit each party to interpret it in the manner most closely approximating its original position. This time, Kissinger wrote, a more precise and specific roadmap needs to be drawn up to guide the peace process. The existing Quartet, key Europeans allies and Russia should define the principles and outlines of a possible settlement, seek the support of regional powers and take a leadership role in its implementation.

Kissinger wrote, "The recent changes in Israel, Palestine and the United States permit some specificity with respect to territory and to Palestinian aspirations. The territorial dividing line should be defined by a security fence paralleling the 1967 borders along principles discussed at Camp David and Taba. This would return all of the West Bank to Palestinian rule except the five to eight percent needed for the strategic defense of Israel. In compensation, Israel would transfer some of its territory elsewhere to the Palestinian state. It would be best to transfer territory with significant Arab populations from the northern part of Israel to improve the demographic balance....

"The Palestinian contribution to peace must be a genuine recognition of Israel, transparent institutions and a dismantling of the terrorist apparatus on Palestinian territory or aimed at Israel from other neighboring states.... No plan that preserves Israel will pacify radical Arabs or those Palestinians who view negotiations as an interim step on the road to the eradication of Israel. A new plan will not gain the gratitude of the parties, since they would have to make major sacrifices. Aspects of it will be bitterly resisted in Israel, however much implied in current Israeli policy.

"It will not solve our dilemmas in Iraq and end hostility to America in the Middle East. But strong US leadership could give moderate leaders in the region the incentive and justification to overcome a policy that dooms the Middle East to another generation of struggle and death ... It could provide a vision of the Middle East compatible with the dignity of all parties and our own conscience."

The End of Bad Breath - Israeli Scientist Discovers Cause and Cure


You brush regularly, you floss, you pop Tic Tacs. Yet, you're still plagued by that offensive odor - technically called halitosis, but which everybody knows as bad breath. An Israeli researcher has finally discovered the root cause of one of the most severe forms of halitosis, and a way to cure it - and its roots surprisingly are not in the teeth or the gums, but in the tonsils.

Mild halitosis usually results from anaerobic bacteria breeding in shallow cavities in the gums or teeth. They release foul-smelling gases such as hydrogen sulfide. Routine dental treatment, regular brushing and mouthwashes usually solve this problem. But there are more persistent cases and Prof. Yehuda Finkelstein of the Meir Hospital at the Sapir Medical Center in Kfar Saba, has found that the tonsils are often to blame.

"I estimate that for about 90 percent of halitosis suffers, the origin of their problem is not dental or paradental diseases but rather in the tonsils," Finkelstein told ISRAEL21c. "The tonsils are ideal for the anaerobic bacteria to hide in - there are many tubular grooves where these microbes can thrive. Surprisingly, historically tonsils have been overlooked as a source of halitosis, but in fact most of the patients suffering from halitosis are suffering from chronic inflammation of the tonsils caused by anaerobic bacteria. The symptom, instead of pain, is bad breath."

But not only has Finkelstein discovered the source of the potentially embarrassing chronic odor, he has also provided a clinically proven solution to the problem - laser treatment. Finkelstein and his team at the hospital successfully conducted a 15-minute laser treatment session on 53 patients. As reported in the current issue of New Scientist, the result was that their bad breath was banished for good.

During their examinations of the patients, the scientists found no other mouth problems, but when they squeezed and massaged the patients' tonsils there was a foul-smelling discharge, suggesting the problem was fetid tonsils.

All of the patients were then treated with a single 15-minute session of laser therapy to the tonsils. The were re-examined four to six weeks later to see if the treatment had worked. Twenty-eight of the patients were cured after the first session and the rest were cured after a further one or two sessions. "In about half the patients, one treatment is enough. There are those that need more than one. The idea is not to evaporate too much tissue, which could result in pain," said Finkelstein.

The laser works by vaporizing the infected tissue and seals the crypts by creating scar tissue that bacteria cannot colonize. It can be carried out while the patient is awake in an office setting with the use of an anesthetic spray to the tonsils.

"I've developed a systematic clinical approach by which you can exactly define and locate the origin of the problem of halitosis," Finkelstein summed up. "And we can solve the problem by evaporating part of the tonsil where the bacteria can hide with laser treatment."

So say goodbye forever to that nagging bad breath that's been plaguing you. If brushing your teeth and gums don't help, remember Finkelstein's laser therapy. It will leave you breathing easier.

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