April 21, 2024
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FB ‘Amazed’ By Israeli Talent

(JNS.org)—When the social media giant Facebook acquired the Israeli technology startup Onavo, executives were “amazed” by the amount of talent it found in Israel. Nicola Mendelsohn—a Facebook VP who heads the company’s European, Middle Eastern, and African branch—told that to Israeli President Shimon Peres just days after its acquisition of Israeli startup Onavo, Globes reported. Facebook’s acquisition of Onavo will enable it to establish its first headquarters in Israel. It is Facebook’s first R&D center outside the U.S.

Former Terrorist Indicted on Immigration Charges

The Associated Press recently reported that an Arab-American community activist from the Chicago suburbs was recently arrested on immigration charges for allegedly lying about her conviction for a deadly bombing more than 40 years ago in Israel. She had planted bombs in a Jerusalem supermarket and the British consulate, was convicted and spent 10 years in jail. The attacks were planned by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. She did not mention her conviction on her papers when she came to the States in 1995 or when she applied for citizenship in 2004. At the time of her arrest she was associate director of the Arab American Action Network, a Chicago-area nonprofit group that advocates for new immigrants and tries to combat anti-Muslim and anti-Arab prejudice. According to the network’s website, Odeh has a law degree and has worked as a lawyer. It says one of her focuses has been working with domestic-violence groups and addressing various women’s issues.

Ontario and Israel to Unite on Blue Economy

The Jerusalem Post reports that Canadian officials who recently attended the Water Technology and Environmental Control exhibition and conference in Tel Aviv said both countries should unite to provide the world with clean water technology, as both places have robust water technology sectors. The Canadians refer to it as a “blue economy,” said one. “I think that having the Great Lakes and an abundance of freshwater has almost given us a responsibility to develop technology and reach out to more portions of the world that are more challenged.” Already a tremendous amount of collaboration exists between the two countries. In particular, Israel’s national water supplier Mekorot and Canadian firm Real Tech Ltd., produce absorption measuring instruments to identify organic contaminants.

Canada Commits to Funding Survivor Videos

Canada has allocated $800,000 to preserve the testimonies of Holocaust survivors. The funding will go to four Jewish organizations in Canada to gather video testimony from survivors. They are the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre, Montreal’s Holocaust Memorial Centre and Toronto’s Sarah and Chaim Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre, which will partner to digitize existing footage of Holocaust survivors’ testimonies; and to Jewish Federations of Canada-United Israel Appeal of Canada to create a digital archive of survivors’ testimonies gathered during the March of the Living, a program that brings students from around the world to explore the remnants of the Holocaust. The projects support Canada’s goal as 2013 chair of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance to promote Holocaust remembrance, research and education across the country, the government statement said.

Egyptian Family Rejects Yad Vashem Award

A family member of an Egyptian doctor, the first Arab to be recognized by Yad Vashem as a Righteous Gentile, said his family is not interested in the honor. Mohamed Helmy, who died in 1982, was recognized by the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in a ceremony last month.

Mervat Hassan, the wife of Helmy’s great-nephew, told The Associated Press that the family did not want to accept the honor because Israel and Egypt continue to have a hostile relationship despite a 30-year peace treaty. She added that: “I respect Judaism as a religion and I respect Jews. Islam recognizes Judaism as a heavenly religion.” Helmy, a Muslim doctor in Berlin, was forbidden to work under Nazis. He spoke against Nazi policies and hid a Jewish friend at a cabin he owned and arranged to hide other members of her family at the home of a German woman who also was honored by Yad Vashem, Frieda Szturmann, according to Yad Vashem.

Kiddush Club Extraordinaire

Haaretz reported that a Whisky Jewbilee was held at Zanger Hall NYC in early October. It brought together 350 exhibitors who pushed whisky, kiddush food and cigars. Four different types of cholent, kishka, chopped liver and three different types of cigars were on the menu, served with shots of choice scotch, whisky, bourbon or rye. More than 100 Orthodox Jewish men (and one or two women) attended. The Jewbilee was a fringe event of WhiskyFest and was created independently of the event to provide the Jewish community of New York with a similar experience.

Double Quakes Hit Israel In a Single Day

Kinneret Region—Last Sunday two earthquakes rattled Northern Israel, both of them registering about 3.5 on the Richter Scale. Geologists from the Israel Geophysical Institute’s Seismology Division said. There were about four hours apart. These were the third and fourth such tremors in the last two weeks. “They are on the same location more or less, so we assume they are acting on the same fault plane in the subsurface,” Dr. Uri Frieslander, told The Jerusalem Post. “We cannot say that this event will yield something in the future.

 

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