A7News: On PA TV, All of Israel to be Replaced by ‘Palestine’

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On PA TV, All of Israel to be Replaced by ‘Palestine’

Even as Abbas says he wants “only” all 6,205 kilometers of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, his official TV station shows a PA flag covering all of Israel.

  1. On PA TV, All of Israel to be Replaced by ‘Palestine’
  2. Knesset Majority: ‘Don’t Divide Jerusalem!’
  3. University Heads Repeal Strike Threat – But Not Professors
  4. PM Olmert, Pres. Putin Meet for Three Hours
  5. Ohr Akiva and Caesarea to Merge
  6. Haifa Teen Indicted for Neo-Nazi Assaults, Arson and Vandalism
  7. Israeli Scientists En Route to Personalized MS Medicine
  8. Sip Some Green Tea, Repair Brain Cells

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1. On PA TV, All of Israel to be Replaced by ‘Palestine’

by Hillel Fendel

Even as Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas declares his demand for “only” all 6,205 kilometers of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, his official TV station shows a PA flag covering all of Israel.

Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), a media watchdog group that monitors the media in the Palestinian Authority, reports on a clip broadcast by Fatah-controlled Palestinian television this week. The clip shows a map in which Israel, in its entirety, is painted in the colors of the Palestinian flag – black, white, red and green. The message is that the PA strives to replace all of Israel, and not just Judea, Samaria and Gaza.

A PA map that “wipes out” the Jewish State
(www.pmw.org.il, Oct. ’07)

Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook of PMW write that the broadcast of the map at this particular time renders the matter of even greater concern. “As preparations for the American peace conference continue,” they write, “the leaders of the Palestinian Authority have announced their demands for a future Palestinian state with an area of 6205 square kilometers. This would include the Gaza Strip, the West Bank [Judea and Samaria – ed.] and [eastern] Jerusalem. However, the message they have conveyed to their people for years, and continue to convey on the eve of the conference, is that ‘Palestine’ exists and it replaces all of Israel.”

As documented by PMW for many years, the idea of turning Israel into an Arab-Palestinian state is part of a formal educational approach throughout the Palestinian Authority. “The picture painted for the Palestinian population, both verbally and visually, is of a world without Israel,” PMW writes. “This uniform message of a world without Israel is repeated in school books, children’s programs, crossword puzzles, video clips, formal symbols, school and street names, etc.”

Street names in the PA have been changed to memorialize terrorists, for instance, and PA textbooks regularly include references to the “Israel is Palestine” canard. For instance, a 12th-grade literature book states, “Palestine’s war ended with a catastrophe that is unprecedented in history, when the Zionist gangs stole Palestine and expelled its people from their cities, their villages, their lands and their houses, and established the State of Israel.” [Arabic Language, Analysis, Literature and Criticism, grade 12, p. 104

Crossword puzzles in the official PA newspaper, Al Hayat al Jadida, have included clues such as “A Palestinian city” – with the proper answer being, in various places, Haifa, Lod, and Ashkelon; all three, of course, are present-day Israeli cities within the pre-1967 borders. Another clue calls Yad Vashem Holocaust Center a “Jewish Center for eternalizing the Holocaust and the lies.” Other crossword puzzle examples can be seen here.

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2. Knesset Majority: ‘Don’t Divide Jerusalem!’

by Hana Levi Julian

More than half of Knesset Members from both the opposition and the coalition factions have signed a petition against plans to hand over parts of Jerusalem to the Palestinian Authority.

The document rejects plans to relinquish Israel’s sovereignty over holy sites in the Old City and the City of David, just outside the Old City walls, as well as possible intentions to give eastern Jerusalem’s Arab neighborhoods to the PA.

Likud MK Yisrael Katz and other Likud MKs spearheaded the drive, and they were quickly joined by nearly 30 coalition MKs, including thirteen members of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s own Kadima party and all of Shas.

Two Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) MKs, David Rotem and Esterina Tartman, signed the petition, as did Yoram Marciano of Labor – the only Labor MK to do so. Four ministers also signed the petition, including Yaakov Edry and Ze’ev Boim of the Kadima party, and two others from the Gil Pensioners’ party.

“It is possible that Olmert could divide Jerusalem and we would have to face that reality, but it’s illegitimate, especially since he’s putting Jerusalem on the agenda to distract from his other problems,” said Likud MK Reuven Rivlin.

Olmert: Knesset Not Necessary
The prime minister asserted earlier this month that he does not need the Knesset’s approval to reach a joint declaration with Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, including one that might include an agreement to hand over parts of Jerusalem to the PA. He has said that Jerusalem is not currently on the negotiating table, but several plans to divide the capital have emerged from Olmert’s close associates.

Prime Minister Olmert denied reports earlier in the week that his government planned to give away parts of the sacred capital, but avoided specifically defining the city limits, giving rise to speculation that he indeed intends to give up Israel’s control over some of Jerusalem.

Summit Still Not Certain
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said she would meet again today (Friday) with PA negotiators in an attempt to come to a pre-summit agreement. Abbas said this week that the PA’s participation in the US-sponsored summit was not a certainty, and that the PA would not retreat from its demands for a joint detailed pre-summit declaration with Israel. Israel insists on only a general declaration, with details to be ironed out later.

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3. University Heads Repeal Strike Threat – But Not Professors

by Hillel Fendel and Hana Levi Julian

With the threat of a university strike looming only three days away – this Sunday – Finance Ministry officials and university heads managed to reach a compromise late Thursday night, and the universities will, in fact, be open. However, the Professors Union is still holding out for increased wages, and it is possible that the teachers will not show up for classes on the first day of the new semester.

The Committee of University Presidents had said it would shut down the campuses and delay the opening of the school year if the Finance Ministry did not come through with an additional 300 million shekels. In the end, they agreed to accept 150 million shekels, with a possible 50 million more in the future.

Representatives of the professors were to convene on Friday to decide if to accept an offer to hold off on a strike while negotiations continue in parallel. The lecturers have been working without a collective wage agreement for the past six years.

University studies face a threat from a third direction as well, with students threatening to resume their own strike if the decision is made to increase tuition by 70%. The increase is one of the controversial Shochat Committee reforms, and is set to be approved this coming January.

High School Teachers’ Walkout Enters Second Week
Meanwhile, high schools students across the country continue to be locked out of the classrooms by striking teachers, who are protesting the lack of a wage agreement with the government. A meeting on Thursday evening between government officials and teachers’ representatives was termed “positive,” but led to no practical results.

The strike entered its second week on Wednesday, with teachers in the Arab sector joining the walkout. Schools in the Arab sector had not been closed earlier in respect for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which ended last Friday.

Schools in Sderot and other Gaza belt communities have been exempted from the strike, due to security concerns. Parents and teachers alike appealed to union officials not to close the schools, explaining the children were safer in the classrooms than out on the street where they could be exposed to Kassam rocket attacks.

Secondary School Teachers Association head Ron Erez says the teachers are demanding a 15% wage hike – reduced from their original demand for a 20% pay raise – as well as an improvement in working conditions. Talks with the Finance and Education ministries have continued off and on for weeks, with little progress. Officials are not optimistic about the chances of the strike ending any time soon.

Rabbi Cherlow: The Public Must Back the Teachers
Rabbi Yuval Cherlow, head of the Petach Tikvah Yeshivat Hesder, told Arutz-7’s Hebrew newsmagazine on Thursday that the strike must be seen not only as a struggle for money, but “as an attempt to increase the level of education in Israel.”

A founding member of the Tzohar Rabbis Organization, the rabbi said that the strike is designed to “encourage excellence among the teachers, improve teaching conditions and education, and the like. In the end, this will benefit the entire Israeli public, and not just the teachers. Therefore, the entire public must support the teachers in their demands.”

Regarding the Torah obligation not to call of Torah studies, Rabbi Cherlow said, “This is a problem that occupies the religious teachers every day. I propose an arrangement whereby the teachers will teach material that is not part of the matriculation curriculum, so that they will not hurt the strike but will also not cause bitul Torah [the abrogation of Torah study].”

Haifa Open Facilities for High School Students During Strike

The city of Haifa has decided to take steps to ensure its 20,000 high school students are not left to wander the streets in the absence of daily lessons. Using teachers from the non-striking Histadrut Teachers Union, it is trying to arrange regular studies for the minority of students who appear willing to come – though not with great success. The teachers explain that they are not strike-breaking, but protesting statements made by Erez against Haifa’s educational system.

Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav told reporters, “We will not leave the children outside to hang around all day.” Erez said that Yahav was :slapping the teachers in the face and spitting in their faces at the same time.”

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4. PM Olmert, Pres. Putin Meet for Three Hours

by Nissan Ratzlav-Katz

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Russian President Vladimir Putin met privately for three hours in Moscow on Thursday evening. At the conclusion of the meeting, which had not been publicly announced prior to Olmert’s abrupt departure for the Russian capital earlier that day, the Prime
Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian Authority negotiations were priority items.
Minister’s Office (PMO) released a statement saying that the talks were “held in an open, serious and good atmosphere….”

According to the PMO and the official Russian news agency, TASS, the issues of Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian Authority negotiations were priority items on the leaders’ agenda. However, the PMO added that they also discussed bilateral issues and the need to confront global terrorism. TASS said that Olmert and Putin agreed there are “good prospects for development” of bilateral relations between Russia and Israel, while Israeli sources noted that they would “remain in close contact in order to advance the two countries’ mutual interests.”

In discussing the role of Russia in the Middle East, Putin reportedly made it clear that his country views Israel’s security interests as a significant component of its regional policies.

Regarding Iran’s development of a nuclear arsenal, Prime Minister Olmert reiterated for President Putin Israel’s stance that an Iran with nuclear weapons poses a threat to international peace. Olmert emphasized the important role of the steps being currently pursued in the matter, such as international sanctions. Those efforts, he said, have led to a halt in Iran’s enrichment of uranium.

For his part, the Russian leader tried to ease Israel’s concerns over Iran’s development of nuclear power. “We know how much you are worried by Iran’s nuclear program,” Putin told Prime Minister Olmert.

The Moscow meeting came on the heels of the Russian President’s visit to Tehran earlier this week, during which he attended a summit of Caspian Sea nations – Russia, Iran, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. During the summit, Putin pledged to assist Iran to complete its Bushehr nuclear facility, and warned against the use of force to prevent Iranian nuclear development.

The leaders of the Caspian Sea nations in attendance agreed to bar foreign powers from using their territory for military strikes against any other member country. However, it was also reported that Putin suggested to Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that Iran suspend its nuclear development program in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions.

In discussing the planned international Middle East peace summit sponsored by the United States, planned for November, Prime Minister Olmert emphasized Israel’s commitment to its success. President Putin said that Russia, which is to play a role in the summit as a member of the Quartet, supports the diplomatic process underway and will act to promote the success of the Middle East talks, as well. He also commended the
“Relations between Russia and Israel are developing.” — Russian President Putin
Prime Minister on his personal efforts on the diplomatic front with the Palestinian Authority.

During a press conference ahead of the Olmert-Putin meeting, the Prime Minister expressed the hope that “this meeting will help us reach progress in bilateral relations.” Responding, President Putin said, “It will.”

Noting that Olmert had visited Moscow one year ago, Putin added, “I must say that our contacts have continued. Relations between Russia and Israel are developing both in the political and economic spheres.”

In characterizing the meeting between himself and Putin, Olmert said the talks were “aimed at the strengthening of relations between Russia, a world power, and the State of Israel.”

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5. Ohr Akiva and Caesarea to Merge

by Hillel Fendel

The Knesset has passed the first reading of a bill, sponsored by Eli Gabbai of the NRP, to merge the towns of Caesarea and Ohr Akiva. The bill passed by a 32-4 vote, following a Cabinet decision to this effect three months ago. The bill must still pass two additional readings, held almost simultaneously, in order to become law.

Caesarea is considered an upper-class beachfront resort town on the Mediterranean, while Ohr Akiva, immediately to its east, is populated largely by working-class strata. They are located some ten kilometers north of Hadera.

Caesarea is municipally run by the Ceasaria Foundation and a development company founded by Baron de Rothschild, the only locality in Israel to be run in this manner. Its population is approximately 4,500, while Ohr Akiva’s is roughly 16,000.

Ceasaea was originally one of the most important Roman Empire cities, and was later a Crusader fortress along the road from Acre to Jerusalem. A large Roman theater built by King Herod is still in use today for concerts and shows.

The Interior Ministry has long had a policy of trying to reduce the number of local councils, merging small pairs of towns into one wherever possible. Specifically, the goal is to do away with independent entities that have fewer than 10,000 residents. However, most of the Ministry’s suggestions and initiatives in this regard are thwarted by local interests who oppose the merge.

MK Gabbai (National Religious Party), the bill’s sponsor, explained, “The State of Israel cannot afford to support only strong populations, and must act to close the gaps between the various sectors.” He admitted that property taxes in Ohr Akiva will rise in the short term, but promised a corresponding drop later, as well as an improvement in various municipal services.

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6. Haifa Teen Indicted for Neo-Nazi Assaults, Arson and Vandalism

by Hana Levi Julian

A 19-year-old Haifa resident was indicted Thursday in connection with a series of neo-Nazi attacks in the northern port city during the month of September.

Tomer Ben-Simon is accused of assaulting a 77-year-old woman after first shouting, “Heil Hitler!” He is charged with attacking a second woman as well.

Ben-Simon and another perpetrator reportedly attacked the elderly woman while she was walking on the bridge connecting the Meridian Hotel with the Neveh David neighborhood on September 17.

The victim told police that “two gang members” beat her, one kicking her and causing her injuries while the other snapped to a Nazi salute, shouting “Heil Hitler!” She finally escaped when a street sweeper stepped in to help her. The neo-Nazi youths beat him too, according to the report.

Ben-Simon also allegedly torched a sukkah (Sukkot-holiday temporary structure) belonging to a local synagogue, burning it to the ground. He is also charged with scrawling swastikas on holy books and on at least one of the synagogue’s Torah scrolls. The items were found cast aside not far from the site.

Ben-Simon also allegedly vandalized several cars in his neighborhood, allegedly engraving or painting neo-Nazi slogans and Satanist symbols. He reportedly engraved the name of a girl who had died in a traffic accident on her father’s car, along with various epithets.

Police found several neo-Nazi songs and other propaganda on Ben-Simon’s personal computer. Despite initial suspicions that Ben-Simon might be legally insane, police said he has been found fit to stand trial. The suspected neo-Nazi is apparently Jewish and police have emphasized that his family is not from the former Soviet Union (FSU). Many other perpetrators arrested for neo-Nazi activity were either born in the FSU or are children of immigrants from the region.

Other Neo-Nazi Incidents in Haifa
Haifa has been hit by a number of other neo-Nazi incidents in the past two months. Most recently, a young man shocked post office workers when he requested a personalized stamp with a neo-Nazi theme, taking advantage of a special “My Stamp” program that allows customers to send images and a payment to post office workers, who then create a set of personalized stamps for the customer’s use.

The young man from Haifa sent a photo of himself wearing a black shirt with a swastika on the left sleeve, similar to the uniforms worn by the Nazi SS during the Holocaust. Postal officials notified police and said the stamp would not be created.

Neo-Nazi incidents have escalated across the country since the arrest of a neo-Nazi gang in Petach Tikva in late August. All the members of the gang were teens who were either themselves born in the former Soviet Union (FSU) or born to parents who emigrated from there to Israel.

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7. Israeli Scientists En Route to Personalized MS Medicine

by Hillel Fendel

Scientists from the Technion in Haifa, Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, and Teva Pharmaceuticals, continuing the success of the Israeli anti-MS drug Copaxone, may have found the way to personalize it according to one’s genes.

Copaxone is widely considered the most effective treatment in preventing or reducing relapses in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). The drug molecule was the fruit of research by Weizmann Institute’s Prof. Michael Sela, who later became the institute’s president, and his colleagues Prof. Ruth Arnon and Dr. Dvora Teitelbaum. Israel’s top drug company, Teva, developed Copaxone for the treatment of the disease, and produces and markets it in over 40 countries worldwide.

Copaxone was the first original Israeli drug to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

MS is an autoimmune disease causing impaired vision and movement disorders, in which the body’s immune system attacks proteins in the fatty layer surrounding nerve fibers. These attacks prevent the conductance of electrical signals through the nerve fibers. Prof. Sela used synthetic molecules designed by his teacher and future President of Israel, Prof. Ephraim Katzir, to curb the attacks.

Medical treatments in general rely on trial-and-error methods to determine the correct dosage, often leading to errors and complications along the way. Scientists from Teva performed tests at Weizmann Institute, using Israel’s only genome-variation scanning equipment, to determine specific genetic markers and their link with the patient’s response to Copaxone.

Prof. Doron Lancet of Weizmann’s Department of Molecular Genetics says, “We analyzed the DNA sequences in 27 candidate genes from each patient participating in the trial, and we identified two genes with a high potential for determining the response to Copaxone. In the future, it may be possible to use this method to scan the genome of MS sufferers, to predict the response levels in advance, and to optimize the dosage and treatment protocol to suit each patient personally.”

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8. Sip Some Green Tea, Repair Brain Cells

by Hana Levi Julian

Green tea has long been thought to have a healing effect on the human body. Now a study by an Israeli scientist has found proof in the laboratory of the Technion Institute of Science in Haifa.

A research team led by Dr. Silvia Mandel of the Technion’s Eve Topf Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases found that green tea extract fed to mice with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease protected the brain cells from dying. It also stopped the process of degeneration in cells that were already affected.

A green tea plantation

The Uruguay native, who immigrated to Israel in 1979, has studied the effects of green tea on health and healing for ten years, since she first began working at the research center.

Mandel attended Ben Gurion University of the Negev, where she earned a degree in Biochemistry. She went on to receive a Masters Degree and then a PhD in Pharmacology at the Technion before joining the research center.

It was during her first year at the center that Mandel found a study that indicated the EGCE in green tea extract could be used to prevent damage to red blood cells. That was the spark that set her on the journey to explore its effects on neurodegenerative disease.

A green tea bud

“I looked up some more articles and decided that maybe I could study this compound – in any event, it is natural so it can’t do any harm and it would be nice to tell people that they can drink something pleasant like tea and get beneficial effects from it,” she explained.

The research findings in Mandel’s study showed that the main anti-oxidant polyphenol found in green tea extract, called EGCG, reduced compounds at the molecular level that lead to lesions in the brain. The amount of EGCG injected into the mice was equal to that found in approximately two to four cups of green tea per day.

Her study, presented in September at the Fourth International Scientific Symposium on Tea and Human Health in Washington D.C., was one of the first to show the actual mechanism of EGCG when it enters the neurons in the brain.

“It was received really well,” Mandel said in an interview with Israel21c. “It was novel in the sense that most studies presented dealt with how the consumption of tea impacts several parameters in patients affected with different maladies like cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.”

Green tea

Mandel also said a “neurorescue” study by one of her Ph.D. students, Lydia Reznichenko, showed EGCG not only prevented further deterioration of brain cells in mice affected with Parkinson’s disease, but also helped regenerate the neurons that were already damaged.

“We’re the first to show that green tea is effective in doing this,” said Mandel. “In the past, it was thought that once brain cells were damaged, there was no way to repair them. The major question is whether these promising results are reproducible in humans.”

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Friday, Oct. 19 ’07
7 Cheshvan 5768

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