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Eshkol Proposed Transferring Palestinians


Israel's prime minister during the 1967 Six-Day War proposed moving Palestinians to Iraq en masse declassified documents showed. According to minutes of a Cabinet session in 1967 published by Ha'aretz last week, Levi Eshkol made the proposals as ministers debated what to do with the sizable Palestinian population that came under Israel's control in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The newspaper said ministers at the time agreed that Gaza and eastern Jerusalem should become part of Israel, but were divided on what to do with the West Bank.

Doctors Will Try to Bring Sharon Out of Induced Coma Monday

By VOA News &

Doctors treating Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Sunday that they would begin trying to revive him from a medically induced coma on Monday. The medical news comes as Israel's Cabinet said it would strive to carry out Sharon's wishes.

The physicians said a CAT scan performed on the prime minister is encouraging, indicating a slight reduction in brain swelling, and that Sharon's other vital signs are within normal limits.

Dr. Shlomo Mor-Yosef, the director of Jerusalem's Hadassah Hospital said Sharon's doctors are ready for the next step in his treatment. "Until Monday morning, we are not going to change anything in the management," he said. "Monday morning, we will gradually reduce the depth of anesthesia. We will be able to evaluate the neurological functions of the prime minister's brain."

Mor-Yosef said that by Monday afternoon, Sharon's doctors should have a better understanding of the damage caused by the massive stroke and cerebral hemorrhage he suffered last Wednesday. The Hadassah Hospital director said that while Sharon's condition has been stable since Friday, he remains in critical condition.

On Saturday, doctors said a CAT scan indicated slight improvement regarding swelling on the prime minister's brain. They also said the left side of Sharon's brain looked better than the right side, which they said was encouraging, because the left side of a person's brain controls the ability to speak.

Sharon is a card-carrying organ donor. He was one of 90 legislators who signed to become organ donors during a campaign held last year. Organ donor officials explained that despite the card, if the prime minister's sons were to oppose donating his organs, then their decision would override the donor card.

Sharon's condition continues to dominate life in Israel. At the weekly Cabinet meeting, acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told his Cabinet colleagues that, if Sharon could talk, he would ask them to continue working without interruption on Israel's pressing security, social and economic issues.

The Cabinet did not address whether to allow East Jerusalem Arabs to vote in Palestinian legislative elections scheduled for January 25. Senior aides to Sharon had said before his stroke that Israel would not allow East Jerusalem residents to take part in the polls, because the Islamic terrorist group Hamas was taking part. But no final decision had been made on the matter.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has said, if Israel does not allow East Jerusalem residents to vote, the legislative elections will be postponed for six months.

What Happens When the Right Side of the Brain is Damaged?

By Ha'aretz

Ariel Sharon's doctors reported that the surgery they performed on him was on the right side of his brain. Doctors unrelated to the case have said since that this indicates the possibility of particularly extensive brain damage.

The right side of the brain is termed the right "hemisphere" by psychologists. This half of the brain controls the left side of the body as well as the expression of emotion, perception of spatial relations and the interpretation of nonverbal information.

Research on the right hemisphere of the brain has revealed it is responsible for crucial perceptual capabilities without which it is difficult for a person to comprehend his or her reality and act accordingly. We use this half of our brain to understand and interpret expressions of emotion. Damage to this capability could manifest itself in an inability to interpret facial expressions.

When this hemisphere is damaged, a person may not be able to "perceive voices and sounds that indicate emotion - sobs, laughter, screams - through his senses," according to a review by experts from the University of California.

Additionally, the right hemisphere of the brain controls the interpretation of geometric and visual spaces. For example, it allows us to read depth perception, recognize and perceive voices, dream during sleep and determine the shape and weight of any given object through touch.

Damage to the right hemisphere can cause functional impairments of varying degrees, from mild disabilities to absolute incapacitation. A patient might be paralyzed on the left side of the body, or the left half of the field of vision could be impaired. The patient could also have difficulty recognizing the faces of his or her loved ones.

The University of California review also warns the patient could become indifferent or childish, impulsive and prone to depression or hysteria. "These patients have a tendency to indulge in delusions, to carry on bizarre conversations and experience various bodily disturbances relating to perceptual impairments."

Hamas Candidate: 'United Jerusalem' to be Arab Capital


The man who heads the Hamas election list in the upcoming Palestinian Authority parliamentary election said that a "united Jerusalem," or the entire capital of Israel, must be the capital of a Palestinian state.

The Hamas candidate, Ismail Hania, also said that if elected, the terror group would stick to its policy of jihad, or holy war against the Jewish state. Recent polls show the Hamas receiving 30% or more of the popular vote in the election scheduled for later this month.

At an election rally in Khan Yunis in the Gaza district, Hania said there would be "no negotiations with Israel, just the barrel of the gun, the only language Israel understands."

Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz's recent comments to the effect that Israel would open a dialogue with the Hamas under certain conditions was interpreted by Hania as an expression of weakness.

Hania said Mofaz's position exemplifies that "the Zionist enterprise is beginning to collapse. The next phase is the disintegration and withdrawal of the occupation, and the rise of eternal Islam and the eternal Islamic nation."

At the rally, Hania tried to distinguish his party from the other terrorist groups running for office in the PA. He said the Hamas would never make any concessions to Israel.

He outlined his group's order of priorities as Islam, and the defense of "Palestinian interests" which he identified as land, Jerusalem, the return of refugees, release of prisoners held by Israel (including the assassins of Israel's Tourist Minister Rehavam Ze'evi), and the right to continue the jihad against Israel and to make it the policy of the PA parliament.

Regarding Jerusalem, Hania said that the terror group's policy of making the entire city of Jerusalem the PA capital found expression in the location of the group's suicide attacks. Those attacks deliberately targeted the Jewish neighborhoods of the city in order to emphasize the PA territorial claim to the entire Jewish capital.

Hebrew U. Researchers Find Cannabis Can Strengthen Bones

By Ha'aretz

Researchers at Hebrew University have found that extracts from the cannabis plant can help strengthen human bones, preventing osteoporosis, according to an Israel21c report.

An article on the Hebrew University research appeared this week in the prestigious American PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S.A.) journal. The research team, headed by Prof. Itai Bab, worked in Hebrew University's bone laboratory.

Substances produced mainly in the brain, called endocannabinoids, are made of fatty acids and exist in the bone and elsewhere. The substances bind to and activate two receptors - CB1 in the nervous system and CB2 in the immune system.

A high number of CB2-receptors were found in the bones of the mice and shown to be essential in preserving normal bone density. Mice lacking those receptors were shown to develop osteoporosis as they age.

Osteoporosis, a common ailment in the Western world, can lead to easily broken bones and disabilities.

The study shows that plants such as cannabis, which contain substances that activate CB2 receptors, can be used as a basis of drugs to help those suffering from osteoporosis. The researchers have developed a synthetic compound called HU-308, which succeeds in combating osteoporosis in mice.

Though the cannabis plant is known mostly for marijuana, which comes from the flowers of the female plants, the extracts have no psychoactive side effects.

Samaria Security Dogs Kennel Closed Down by Police


Police, Border Guard and IDF forces raided the town of Kfar Tapuach in the Shomron Sunday, closing down the Jewish Legion there and the kennel used to breed dogs used for Jewish defense.

The Shai (Samaria and Judea) Police District spokesman said that the action was taken in accordance with a directive by the IDF Central Commander, ordering the closing of all Hebrew Battalion offices and organs.

The forces confiscated six dogs used for or being trained for security, as well as the contents of the dining room and Torah study program. The police also informed the Hebrew Battalion personnel that they are no longer permitted to use the dining room and study hall. The raid was not accompanied by violence.

Jewish Legion head Yekutiel Ben-Yaakov told Arutz-7 with a measure of cynicism that the latest move by the State of Israel would not deter him: "The truth is that I had been getting a bit worried. We have been operating for four years already, and we are the best form of Zionism and patriotism and Jewish spirit since the original Jewish Legion was formed in 1917, and I was wondering how the same government that gives land and guns to the worst of our terrorist enemies also allow this enterprise to thrive at the same time? But now that they have taken action against us, I feel that we have received our 'kosher certification,' if you will. There cannot be coexistence in the same entity between those who support Jewish murderers and those who defend Jews."

Ben-Yaakov explained that his group's kennel has raised and trained over 100 sentry guard dogs, patrol dogs and home protection dogs in the past four years: "We offer free courses for the security chiefs and emergency team leaders in the various communities and we have given dogs to help security in various communities, and even to the Israel Police and Border Guard themselves."

Iran Recruits Former Arab Mayor as Political Spy


Israeli security services have arrested the former mayor of Fasuta, a Christian Arab village in the western Galilee, who is suspected of working for Iranian intelligence.

Security services suspect that Jirias Jirias, 58, was recruited by an Iranian agent in September 2004, while on a trip to Cyprus. The agent, Hani Abdullah, tried to use Jirias to influence Israeli politics on behalf of Iran.

A few months after meeting Abdullah, Jirias attempted to carry out his mission by joining the left wing Meretz-Yahad party. Jirias became active in the party and expressed interest in becoming a member of Knesset. The Meretz-Yahad party, headed by Yossi Beilin, is in favor of creating an Arab state in all of Judea, Samaria, Gaza and parts of Jerusalem, including the Old City and the Temple Mount.

(Alternatively, the party favors the Geneva Initiative, a proposal to retain a few large communities in Judea and Samaria in exchange for Israeli territory liberated in 1948.)

Early in 2005, Jirias again met his Iranian handlers in Cyprus. This time they told him to start making ties with Israeli government officials. Jirias was finally arrested December 12.

While a newcomer to Israeli national politics, Jirias was an old-timer at working against the interests of the Jewish state. Jirias fled the country in 1970 after security services discovered he had become an activist in the Fatah terror group of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

While in Lebanon, Jirias first met Abdullah, who later served as agent for Iranian intelligence. During the 1980s the two men lived in Cyprus.

Despite Jirias's overt anti-Israel activity, Israeli authorities allowed him back into the country in 1996, three years after signing the Oslo accords. This agreement, signed by former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO terrorist chief Yasir Arafat, established the Palestinian Authority in Judea, Samaria and Gaza.

Jirias was elected Mayor of Fasuta, a town in the northern Galilee just six kilometers south of the Lebanese border, in a rotation agreement that began in May 2001. In November 2003, he lost a bid for reelection.

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