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What to expect when you're making Aliyah:

For information about Aliyah, please listen to this radio program (http://msmedia.a7.org:82/arutz7/shows/English-show/aliyah.mp3)


Israel's Sharon in Good Condition after Mild Stroke

By Robert Berger )VOA-Jerusalem) & Israeli News Agencies

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is quickly recovering from a mild stroke. But the illness is raising questions about his political future. Sharon's doctors said he did not suffer any damage from the stroke, and is expected to be released from the hospital Tuesday.

"I am coming at this moment from the room of Prime Minister Sharon, and after conducting with him a short conversation, I can say that he looks fine, feels fine and he wants to go home," said Dr. Yair Birnbaum spoke at a news conference at Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem.

Dr. Yaakov Neparstok said Sharon suffered a brief blood clot in the brain, but recovered quickly, after he was given blood thinners. "And we were happy to find out that, except [for] this event, Mr. Sharon does not suffer from any significant medical problem," he said.

Sharon suffered a TIA (transient ischemic attack Sunday evening. The stroke, termed a mild cerebral vascular event, "will not leave behind any damage or any traces," said Dr. Tamir Ben-Hur, chief of the hospital's neurology department. "There's an excellent chance it won't repeat itself," Ben-Hur said. "After a rest, he can return to full functioning.

The prime minister is extremely overweight, and doctors are recommending that he go on a diet. And, they say, he should get some rest. But rest will be hard to come by, as Sharon faces a grueling campaign ahead of national elections on March 28.

Jerusalem Post correspondent Gil Hoffman said the prime minister's illness changes the political landscape, because he is a one-man show. "The impact is absolutely huge. In this campaign, Sharon was expected to win by a landslide with a new party, called Kadima, that he formed only a month ago. The party was really formed around his image, and everything revolves around him."

And at 77-years-old, his age is now cause for concern. "Age was never really an issue in this campaign. People never really brought it up. And, from now on, his health is going to be one of the primary issues in this campaign," Hoffman said.

Since pulling Israel out of Gaza in August, Sharon has established himself (to his supporters) as a strong and determined leader, who can get the job done. But a senior aide to Sharon said that it would be several days before he returned to his grueling work schedule.

"It might be a few days before he returns to his full work level ... his 20-hour day," Ilan Cohen said. "They say in the next few days he needs to get more rest and return to full capacity gradually."

Ben-Hur said the clot had been caused by a minor malfunction with the heart, which he said is not uncommon among otherwise healthy people.

Doctors said Monday that Sharon had been conscious throughout the hospital stay. "There was no paralysis, and in medical terms he wasn't confused," Ben-Hur told a news conference. "He had some difficulty in his speech, which was caused by a small blood clot." Full blood supply to the brain was restored, Ben-Hur said. Close to midnight, Sharon repeated this message in a conversation with Ha'aretz.

"I'm fine," he said. "Apparently I should have taken a few days off for vacation. But we're continuing to move forward" - a play on the name of his new party, Kadima, which means "forward."

Sharon received get-well messages from Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and U.S. envoy Elliott Abrams, who was speaking on behalf of the U.S. government, Sharon's aide Ra'anan Gissin said. Officials in the White House and State Department, as well as EU envoy Javier Solana, also called to wish Sharon a speedy recovery.

On the streets of Gaza City, meanwhile, dozens of armed men from the Popular Resistance Committees, a small but fiercely terrorist group, fired guns in the air and handed out pastries to motorists celebrating the news that Sharon was ill. The celebrations quieted soon after news emerged that the prime minister's life was not in danger, Israel Radio reported.

"Someone who is 78, overweight, short of breath and had a stroke cannot run a country." So said Knesset member Aryeh Eldad, the former IDF chief physician.

Eldad (National Union), who in the past headed the plastic surgery department in Hadassah Ein Kerem and is an expert in burns, said that the prime minister's mini-stroke would "imbue the public with the realization" that a country cannot be run by someone in Sharon's medical condition.

"The incident at hand means that the Prime Minister must reveal his physical condition to the public," Eldad said, "so that the country's fate not be dependent upon a millimeter-sized blood clot." Sharon's press advisor Assaf Shariv.

Shariv, asked about the political vacuum that would have been formed in the Kadima party had Sharon not recovered, said, "The other parties also do not have a number two man... I can assure you that soon, Kadima will have a number two person."

Sharon had previously "boasted that he would be willing to publish his health records although they never appeared," according to the Guardian newspaper in England. He made the pledge in the last election campaign in early 2001.

Officials are now indicating that during the two-hour period of uncertainty after Sharon was transported to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital on Sunday night, the Prime Minister's Bureau was not really functioning. No decision was made as to who is in charge of the country, and even Sharon's closest aides were relying on hospital media reports for updates on Sharon's condition.

Shin Bet officials are already analyzing the events which occurred, to learn for the future, while other high-level officials are also dissecting the period which was accompanied by a media frenzy and much speculation, but very little in the way of confirmed accurate updates being released to the highest members of government.


Thoughts on Sharon's Stroke

By Emanuel A. Winston (Commentary)

Perhaps Prime Minister Sharon has had other episodes of brain trauma of which he was unaware or which were hidden from the public. Many were baffled as to why Sharon did a 180 degree turn abut and became hostile to all those whom he previously supported.

Perhaps it wasn't merely an act of political opportunism but a strange, inexplicable twist of the Great General's mind.

Would a series of prior mini-strokes explain how a man dedicated to a sell out of Jewish Land and the pioneering settlers whom he claimed to love and who loved him unreservedly. But, he turned on them with a fury. They became the enemy, his personal enemy.

Settlers were the targets he chose to be destroyed with one of his inimitable military campaigns. Something was definitely changed about Sharon in his later years. He grew more obese and few knew anything about his real medical condition. This was carefully guarded information.

I am deeply concerned over the condition of Sharon's mind during and after his stroke. I clearly recall being similarly disturbed when Syria's President Hafez al Assad was reaching the end of his day. Assad (in his death throes) had his finger on the button and could release a saturation missile attack with chemical warheads against Israel.

I cannot help but wonder what Sharon will unleash in his fragile, injured frame of mind - possibly against his own people.

Several questions come to mind: Will Sharon's advisors and collaborators try to advance the next phase of the Evacuation Plans - as if Sharon were in his right mind and seemingly giving the orders? Will the Israeli military follow orders from a mentally disabled Prime Minister?


The reports were always how excellent his health was. No reports on high cholesterol; no reports on diabetes; no reports on clogged arteries loaded with plaque. "No Reports" are supposedly a sign of good health or, at least, that's what the news pundits are saying. He was notoriously healthy...wasn't he?

So, who will run his new 'Kadima' party now? Will pronouncements flow from Sharon's Sycamore Farm or will Peres and Olmert make a deal to run 'Kadima' from behind a curtain?

When all of Sharon's plants jumped ship from the Likud and Labor parties and became high profile, where will they jump to now? Who would even trust them to take them back?

I am deeply concerned over the condition of Sharon's mind during and after his stroke. I clearly recall being similarly disturbed when Syria's President Hafez al Assad was reaching the end of his day. Assad (in his death throes) had his finger on the button and could release a saturation missile attack with chemical warheads against Israel.

I cannot help but wonder what Sharon will unleash in his fragile, injured frame of mind - possibly against his own people.

Several questions come to mind: Will Sharon's advisors and collaborators try to advance the next phase of the Evacuation Plans - as if Sharon were in his right mind and seemingly giving the orders? Will the Israeli military follow orders from a mentally disabled Prime Minister?

How much of a PR campaign will be mounted to use medical personnel to assure the voting public that Sharon is still fit to govern and thus fit to run again for Prime Minister? *What possible scenarios can YOU think of in this latest Israeli situation?


Saudi Website Posts Anti-Semitic Diatribe

By YnetNews.com

The Quran tells the Jews the truth about their history and their prophets, purging it from countless legends they report in different ways, said the Muslim Brotherhood's ideologue, Sayyid Qutb, a number of decades ago.

His hate filled words have been reprinted in an "Op-Ed" that appeared in the English version of the Saudi daily, Arab News, the Judeoscope website reported.

"It cleanses this history from all the filth they tried to attribute to their prophets. In fact, we can hardly find an Israelite prophet who was left unstained by this filth," Qutb said in the article.

Qutb goes on to say that the Jews misleadingly added content to the Torah: "They alleged that Abraham introduced his wife to the King of Palestine and to Pharaoh of Egypt as his sister, hoping for some favor from them. Jacob, or Israel, played tricks and lied to his father Isaac in order to take his grandfather's blessings, which were due to his brother Esau.

"They further allege that the Prophet Lot's two daughters made him drunk on two nights so that he slept with each one of them in order to beget a child. They did so, it is alleged, because he had no male heir and they feared that his wealth would go to others. It is further claimed that they achieved their purpose.

"The Quran absolves all these noble and pure prophets of all the filth such Israelite superstitions, which the Jews added to the Torah, tried to attach to them. Likewise it refuted all the false claims against Jesus, son of Mary."

Sayd Qutb was executed by the Egyptian government in 1966 after leading a failed Islamic coup. His ideas have become central to jihadist movements around the world.


Arab Knesset Member Bishara: Wipe Out Israel and 'Take Democracy With You

By IsraelNationalNews.com

Arab Israeli Knesset Member Azmi Bishara claimed that the state of Israel is the greatest robbery of this century. Addressing an Arab audience in Lebanon, he asserted that Arabs were the original residents of the land and urged Israelis to leave and take their democracy with them.

"Israel is the 20th century's greatest robbery, carried out in broad daylight. I will never recognize Zionism even if all Arabs do. I will never concede Palestine. The battle is still long," Bishara stated at a Lebanese book fair last week in Beirut.

"The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is not a demographic dispute, but a national one. It's not the problem of 1.2 million Palestinians living in Israel. They are like all Arabs, only with Israeli citizenship forced upon them. We are the original residents of Palestine, not those who came from Poland and Russia," Bishara told Lebanese newspaper Al -Safir.

The Lebanese audience received Bishara's comments warmly. "Return Palestine to us and take your democracy with you. We Arabs are not interested in it," the Knesset Member stated.

Bishara was born in Nazareth in 1956 and received his Ph.D at Humboldt University in East Germany. Bishara headed the Philosophy Department at Bir-Zeit University, located 15 miles north of Jerusalem, and was a senior researcher at the Van-Leer Institute in Jerusalem. Bishara announced his intentions to campaign for re-election to the Knesset in the upcoming elections in the party that he founded, the National Democratic Assembly (NDA).

Bishara left Israel for Lebanon last week without receiving consent from the Interior Ministry for his trip. This is not the first time Bishara has brashly spoken against Israel to audiences in hostile Arab nations. In June 2001, a group of Knesset members sought to end his immunity from prosecution and brought charges of disloyalty against Bishara for a speech he gave in Syria at a memorial ceremony in Damascus for the late Hafez Assad. Bishara appeared jointly with Hizbullah terrorist leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah and called for a 'united Arab nation' to come together against Israel.

Bishara returned to Israel over the weekend and claimed that his address in Lebanon was commentary on the subjects of Zionism and citizenship. "I didn't say anything new that I hadn't said in other places. I've spoken like this in the Knesset," he told Yedioth Ahronoth.


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