Mossad blamed as Tunisian scientist ‘with Hamas ties’ killed near his home
Mohammed Al-Zoari, an aviation scientist and engineer with links to Palestinian terror group Hamas, was shot dead at point-blank range on Thursday in the Tunisian city of Sfax, Hebrew outlets quoted Arabic media as saying Friday evening.
According to reports on Israel’s Channel 10 and Army Radio, unknown assailants shot Zoari multiple times when he was sitting in his car near his home.
The reports said between three and seven bullets were found in his body.
According to Channel 10, a senior Tunisian journalist said the Israeli spy agency Mossad had been tracking Zoari for quite some time, and was responsible for his assassination.
Israel’s Channel 2 news said Zoari was reported to have received death threats because of his Palestinian terror links.
However, Channel 2 also quoted Tunisian security officials as saying that the investigation of the death did not currently suggest an assassination by a foreign intelligence agency.
Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah claimed last week that his government has received no aid from Washington in 2016, accusing the US of imposing a “financial siege” on the Palestinians. But the State Department has in fact provided Ramallah with over $357 million in financial assistance in the past year, according to information given to The Times of Israel by a US State Department official on Thursday.
Additionally, in 2016 alone, the US contributed $355,177,827 to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNWRA), of which $95 million was earmarked for the West Bank and Gaza. UNWRA also operates Palestinian refugee camps in Jordan, Syria and Lebanon.
In total, therefore, the US gave around $712 million in aid to Palestinians in 2016, and is the world’s largest supplier of such aid.
Hamdallah told the official PA radio station the Voice of Palestine on December 8 that his government has not seen any of the aid money approved by the US in 2016. He described this as part of a “financial siege” on the Palestinian government. That allegation against the US of failure to pay, according to figures and explanations received by The Times of Israel, is a cynically skewed misrepresentation of the reality.
“Since last year, there is a financial siege on the Palestinian government… For example, let’s speak frankly, the US approved $263 million in 2016 as aid to the government. Look, 2016 is about to end, no shekel or agora, or dinar or dollar has been paid, if we speak frankly. We hope that this aid money will be paid,” he said, according to a translation by Palestinian Media Watch.
Hamdallah then listed and praised countries that he said have given aid to the PA in 2016, and excluded the US.
Looking to Israel’s Declaration of Independence for guidance, Ruth Gavison addresses the polarization within Israeli society that has resulted from fierce debates over identity, the status of the Palestinians, religion, and the like:
We [in Israel] have forgotten that democracy, human rights, and the Jewish state, [all of which are enshrined in the Declaration], go together very well. Jews used to understand this. Not only do they go together well, they are required for each other. The people who struggled to establish the Jewish state knew that they were going to have a democracy and they were very responsive to the idea of human rights. . . . But these three interlocking elements . . . are today viewed by many as totally distinct, with either major tensions or even outright contradiction among them.
So, increasingly, we find people who want to take one element of the complex vision . . . and make it primary. They give their primary ideal a very expansive interpretation. They demand that the other two elements be operative only within the constraints of the broadly-defined primary element. And this happens from all sides of the political and cultural spectrum. . . .
The “wisdom” of the Declaration, and of the decisions that the founding fathers and mothers made in the first decades of Israel, was their agreement to disagree. . . . The Declaration itself [thus] left many ideological questions open. . . . Who is a Jew? What role does the Jewish religion play in the new state? What is the relationship within Judaism among nationalism, culture, and religion? What is the status of the Arab minority and what are its rights? . . .
The emergent Trump administration is “the first time that we see Washington officials who realize the facts on the ground and frankly declare that they will not accept blackmail or keep silent over extremist and terrorist regimes,” Abdulrahman al-Rashed, an acclaimed journalist and former editor-in-chief of London-based leading Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat, said.
In an oped titled “Which Muslims Are Against Trump?” published Tuesday in Al Arabiya, Rashed said that Muslims should not be afraid of President-elect Donald Trump’s “intentions” for the Muslim and Arab world. On the contrary, writes Rashed, the ones who are leading the fear-mongering campaign by “claiming Washington was willing to launch war on one billion Muslims” are radical Muslim groups and tyrannical regimes – including, chiefly, Iran – because Trump and his newly appointed officials have sworn to topple them.
“We understand that Hillary Clinton’s defeat in the elections angered the Muslim Brotherhood. What fueled the latter’s anger was how Trump received Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in New York earlier this year,” Rashed said in reference to Trump’s September meeting with the Egyptian leader, which prompted the latter to declare he had “no doubt” the president-elect would make a strong leader.
“It’s on this basis that they try to picture Trump’s administration as racist and as an enemy of Islam and Muslims,” he continued.
“Iran, Al-Qaeda, and Islamic groups like the Muslim Brotherhood” are the chief objectors to Trump’s choice of appointments, Rashed writes.
During the anti-Trump rally held on November 15 at George Washington University (GWU), I was struck for the first time with the feeling that I may not be safe on my campus.
At the rally — supposedly for peace — I was shocked to hear antisemitic rhetoric, hate, and demonization coming from some of my peers. The list of demands some of the protesters subsequently presented to the GWU administration included a call for divestment from Israeli companies due to “colonialism and apartheid in Palestine” and “escalating state-sanctioned genocide.” While the demands included a statement urging protection of Jewish students from antisemitic behavior, this was proven insincere by the intrinsic antisemitism in the document.
Among the list’s sponsors was Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), which is known for co-opting rallies around the country in order to promote their hateful anti-Israel message. And that’s what they did with this anti-Trump rally.
SJP has been active at GWU in the past; in February, the group taught students how to boycott Sabra Hummus. This past October, SJP held a general body meeting promoting the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement (BDS). BDS is nothing more than a tactic to vilify Israel, which has coincided with the rise of antisemitism in Europe. And SJP and other BDS proponents are usually blind to the fact that economically destroying Israel would hurt the very populations they want to save. As Bassem Eid, a well-known Palestinian activist, wrote for The Washington Institute:
Israelis continue to come to the West Bank to do business, and most Palestinians continue to buy Israeli goods. Indeed, if you ask Palestinians what they want, they’ll tell you they want jobs, secure education, and health. And the people who are failing them in this regard are their own leaders: Fatah in the West Bank, and Hamas in Gaza. The focus of PA leaders is on enriching themselves and their families, rather than serving the interests of the Palestinians.
The left’s latest target is a Chanukah party where it will be protesting Muslims on behalf of Muslims.
If you’re confused, imagine how confused they are.
The Azerbaijani embassy of a secular Muslim country is co-hosting a Chanukah party with the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. But the Azerbaijani embassy had made the political faux pas of obtaining space at the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C.
Outside the usual anti-Israel contingent of the anti-Jewish left, If Not Now and Jewish Voice for Peace, will be screaming hate. Meanwhile some more organized left-wing Jewish groups, the Union for Reform Judaism, Women of Reform Judaism, the National Council of Jewish Women, along with the anti-Israel activists of Ameinu and Peace Now, not to mention HIAS, which can’t wait to bring the synagogue bombers of tomorrow to America today, are boycotting a Muslim party to protest in favor of Muslims.
Some are demanding that Trump speak out in favor of Muslims before they’ll attend the Muslim party. If they were any more mixed up, they would be tying their shoelaces to someone else’s shoes.
Things just keep getting worse for Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison in his quest to become Democratic National Committee Chair. Today only brought more bad news for Ellison.
Ellison’s past decade-long support for Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, his suggestion of dual loyalty from American Jews when speaking at a fundraiser for Muslim leaders, and his cozy relationship with some of the worst pro-BDS, anti-Israel groups, has disrupted what seemed like a clear trajectory to DNC Chair.
And then Obama-Biden sent signals they were encouraging Labor Secretary Tom Perez to seek the position.
The accumulation of controversies threatened Ellison’s DNC bid with a political death spiral.
That spiral got no relief today, as Ellison continued to try to defend his Farrakhan days by accusing those who uncovered his history of a “smear” campaign.
With a new challenger to his bid to become Democratic National Committee chairman, Keith Ellison took to CNN on Wednesday and lied about anti-Israel remarks he made in 2010, which were first exposed by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT).
At the 2010 private fundraiser, Ellison criticized what he saw as Israel’s disproportionate influence on American foreign policy:
The United States foreign policy in the Middle East is governed by what is good or bad through a country of 7 million people. A region of 350 million all turns on a country of 7 million. Does that make sense? Is that logic? Right?
Asked about the comments by CNN anchor Chris Cuomo, Ellison falsely claimed that he was merely answering a question about political involvement.
“I was talking to a group of people who asked me how they could look at the Jewish community as a model for political empowerment,” Ellison said in a transcript that was posted by Real Clear Politics.
The IPT published the entirety of Ellison’s remarks from that 2010 fundraiser, which was hosted by former Muslim American Society (MAS) President Esam Omeish, an activist who previously praised Palestinians for choosing “the jihad way.” fMAS was founded by Muslim Brotherhood members in the United States, and Omeish recently published a glowing tribute to the Egyptian-based Islamist group.
Bernie Sanders has thrown his support behind Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison in the contest to lead the DNC. This should surprise no one because Sanders represents the radical far-left wing of the Democratic Party and that’s where Ellison would steer the party as chairman.
The Washington Times reports:
Bernie Sanders vows Keith Ellison will usher in ‘real change’ at DNC
Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont went to bat Wednesday for Rep. Keith Ellison’s bid to become the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee, saying the status quo is not working and that the Minnesota Democrat has the gumption to move the party in a different direction.
Speaking at an event hosted by the American Federation of Teachers in Washington, Mr. Sanders said the Democratic Party must change course after losing so much ground in Congress and in statehouses across the country over the past decade.
“Brothers and sisters, the status quo is not working and we will not succeed if we continue along the same-old/same-old path,” Mr. Sanders said at a campaign event with Mr. Ellison. “Now is the time for real change in the Democratic Party.
A conference to be in Ireland, entitled “International Law & the State of Israel: Legitimacy, Responsibility and Exceptionalism” will advocate for the destruction of the Jewish State, as inferred by its title and description, which focuses on the wrongs of the establishment of Israel, rather than any purported “occupation” in the aftermath of the Six Day War.
To quote the ‘Organisers’ statement’:
“It is with excitement that we are announcing the launch of the conference “International Law & the State of Israel: Legitimacy, Responsibility and Exceptionalism” that will be held between the 31st of March and the 2nd of April 2017 at University College Cork, a constituent university of the National University of Ireland.
This conference will be the first of its kind and constitutes a ground-breaking historical event on the road towards justice and enduring peace in historic Palestine. It is unique because, while most attention today is directed at Israel’s actions in the 1967 Occupied Territories, the conference seeks to expand the debate surrounding the nature of the State of Israel and the legal and political reality within it.
The conference will raise questions that link the suffering in historic Palestine to the manner of Israel’s foundation and its nature. It aims to generate a debate on legitimacy, responsibility and exceptionalism under international law as provoked by the nature of the Israeli state. It will also examine how international law could be deployed, expanded, and even re-imagined, in order to achieve peace and reconciliation based on justice.”
The statement features a purported capacity to disagree and debate the conference’s topical issues. However, such notions of academic freedom sit rather uneasily with the extremism of the event’s professed aims, which include an advocacy to transform or ‘re-imagine’ international law toward the conference’s aim of nullifying the Jewish State’s existence, as well as the near-exclusion of programme speakers supportive of Israel. The reader also learns from the conference’s website that the new pow wow represents a further attempt to hold the event:
A California congressman appealed to the Department of Education this week to adopt the State Department’s definition of antisemitism, in order to combat an “undeniable” increase in Jew-hatred on campus.
In a letter to Secretary of Education John King Jr. on Wednesday, Rep. Brad Sherman (D) urged him to formally expand its definition to include certain forms of anti-Israel behavior, rather than merely continuing to view Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as sufficient.
“[T]he phenomenon of campus-based antisemitic forms of anti-Zionism has gained more traction,” Sherman wrote. “This trend has formed a hostile academic environment on many college campuses. Unless you have a proper definition of what antisemitism is, you will not be able to appropriately assess whether a hostile environment for Jewish students is based on antisemitic harassment.”
According to Sherman, the State Department’s definition protects the constitutional free-speech rights of both critics and supporters of the Jewish state by making a “clear distinction between legitimate criticisms of Israel and antisemitism,” based on “three main points: demonization, double standards and delegitimization.”
Utilizing this as a guideline within the Department of Education would “indicate a more consistent policy within government agencies.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: Pharaoh Rejects Call To Adopt IHRA Definition Of Antisemitism (satire)
The ruler of the Egyptian Empire today dismissed calls for his government to accept a definition of anti-Jewish rhetoric that includes some kinds of criticism of Israel, palace sources are reporting.
Pharaoh Thutmose II rejected pleas from Hebrew advocates to adopt the definition of antisemitism put forth by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance for purposes of addressing hate crimes in the kingdom. Pharaoh declined to specify the reasons for the rejection, but senior palace figures explained that the king prefers not to be constrained by such definitions in his capacity as Father of Egypt, the Morning and Evening Star, and Bringer of Prosperity.
Hebrew organizations reacted with disappointment. “We were confident His Highness would understand the need for the adoption of this definition, given the prevalence of antisemitic acts,” explained Eliasaf ben De’uel. “Unfortunately, Pharaoh gave greater weight to other political considerations, and we must find alternative ways of addressing rampant anti-Israel behavior in Egyptian society and government.”
Jews at Columbia University in New York City were rattled Wednesday by the discovery at the library of application forms for an alt-right neo-fascist organization in a box covered with the book jacket of Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the d’Urbervilles.
According to the Columbia/Barnard branch of the Jewish campus organization Hillel, finding the forms for the neo-Nazi Dark Enlightenment movement “profoundly disturbed our community, many of whom have close family members who are Holocaust survivors and know all too well the effects of these hateful agendas.”
Hillel said that its “staff has been in touch with University officials, Public Safety, and outside organizations, all of whom are looking into this discovery. Though little information has come to light, we…want to affirm that we unequivocally stand against any presence of antisemitism and bigotry on our campus.”
According to the independent Columbia news website Bwog, the documents filled with neo-Nazi imagery and language were uncovered when a student working at the library found what looked like a copy of Hardy’s novel placed in the wrong section.
Bwog said the forms — featuring an image similar to the German Reichsadler, the Third Reich’s coat of arms depicting an eagle on top of a swastika — asked applicants to rank their objectives, availability, topics of concern and interest in leadership positions.
Students at California’s Claremont Colleges responded to a campus mural calling for Israel to be replaced by a Palestinian state with a public art display of their own endorsing a “peace and love” approach to the Middle East conflict.
The Claremont Progressive Israel Alliance (CPIA) were prompted to take matters into their own hands on Sunday after the school’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter produced the anti-Israel painting.
SJP’s artwork featured a Palestinian flag superimposed onto a map of Israel, imagery commonly used to suggest the dissolution of the Jewish state. Alongside the map was a depiction of a clenched fist and the phrase “Right 2 Resist.” The caption, CPIA said in a joint statement with the Claremont Colleges Hillel Student Board, “implies support for the violence that has claimed the lives of thousands of innocent Israeli civilians.”
CPIA and the Hillel student board said the anti-Zionist imagery caused “discomfort and fear” among Jewish and non-Jewish students, and that “in targeting Jews and denying Israel’s right to exist, SJP reflects ideas steeped in age old antisemitism.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: Jewish Students In Campus Pillowfight Accused Of Disproportionate Force (satire)
A student activity intended to break the social ice and relieve some academic tension at a venerable academic institution has resulted in several Jewish participants facing accusations that they overreacted to other participants’ swinging pillows at them.
The annual Quad Pillow Fight at Oberlin College took place Monday night as scheduled despite frigid temperatures, and the students engaged in the traditional every-man-for-himself melee. By the time the two-hour event concluded, student groups such as Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, and JStreetU were charging that Jewish participants in particular were putting excessive force behind the blows they struck with their pillows.
“We have reports of injuries from some of our members that they were targeted by Jewish students – probably Zionist ones – and pummeled with energy and force well beyond the bounds of what is reasonable for a knock-down, drag-out pillow fight,” asserted Ali Latdam, VP of the Oberlin chapter of SJP. “We demand that the administration open an investigation into these attacks and initiate disciplinary action against the guilty.”
“We have to protect the vulnerable population of pillow-fighters who did not ask to be hit,” seconded Lou Dikress of JVP. “Our organization calls upon this institution to put a stop to the abuses taking place under their aegis. We even have reports of Jewish attackers laughing as they engage in this wanton brutality. No institution that claims to uphold liberal values will tolerate such behavior.”
Towards the end of the item (02:21:57) presenter Mishal Husain asked:
“Jeremy, finally, what we heard from that member of the White Helmets was this fear that after the regime takes full control of this area, everyone will be executed. What will happen? Will there be any sense of accountability? Any parameters?”
Bowen: “You know, let’s hope that doesn’t happen and it makes you…I mean I tend to wonder what they would get out of executing people. You know, I think that it’s not like there’s a crazed militia who are taking over there. They are, you know, I think relatively disciplined troops and you’d wonder why an order to execute everybody would be given. I think, particularly since the…we’re hearing from the ICRC in Geneva that the ICRC and SARC – the Syrian Arab Red Crescent – are gonna be there as well facilitating the evacuation of the wounded, so they’ve allowed in some witnesses potentially. If you’re going to do a massacre I doubt that would happen.”
For the record.
In March 2016, Yolande Knell told BBC audiences that:Knell ISIS Sinai report
“Palestinians are also alleged to have treated injured IS fighters. I cross into Gaza where Hamas officials strongly deny the claims.”
Viewers then heard from Ghazi Hamad.
“We will not allow for anyone from Gaza now to do anything against or to damage or to harm the national security of Egypt and we will not allow for anyone from Sinai to come to use Gaza as a shelter.”
Despite the BBC’s repeated amplification of Hamas denials of collaboration with the ISIS affiliate in Sinai, we now learn from that latter organisation itself of the existence of a “liaison” between it and Hamas.
The UK Parliament also has a dress code – whilst it does not go into granular detail, the website of parliament says that “the dress of Members (of parliament) these days is generally that is ordinarily be worn for a fairly formal business transaction,” namely, those things listed above. One will almost never see a male member of parliament without a suit and tie, or a female MP not dressed in a formal business dress or a suit. When I visited Parliament in January of this year, not only was every MP dressed in formal business attire, but at the committee meeting I attended, every member of the audience wore a jacket.
Does Peter Beaumont think that the Huffington Post is also “oppressing women” by writing in an advice column, that female business attire means skirts whose hem goes below the knee? The Guardian itself, in its “Work and Careers” section, features an article describing business attire as “nothing less than a suit” – evidence of growing political and social conservatism at the Guardian, no doubt.
Not for the first time, the Guardian`s coverage of this Israeli story says far more about the Guardian than it does about Israel. The Israeli Knesset has a dress code that is not in the least bit noteworthy or surprising – but for the Guardian, it’s another opportunity to demonise Israel.
An Australian man has been arrested and charged with terror offenses after he allegedly published videos online in which he called on other people to kill Jews, the country’s 9 News reported on Thursday.
According to the report, the 50-year-old suspect, a resident of the Adelaide suburb of Flinders Park whose name and image have been withheld, made videos that included “graphic and explicit instructions” and “physical demonstrations on how to commit the acts.”
The report said the videos still can be seen online and have drawn thousands of views.
Australian police officers told 9 News there were no “current or impending threats” related to the arrest.
The suspect’s next court appearance will be in February.
In recent years, as reported by The Algemeiner, the Australian Jewish community has been on edge due to the arrests of a number of ISIS suspects in the country and rising antisemitism.
Antisemitism is not just a Jewish or Israeli problem, European Union coordinator on combating antisemitism Katharina von Schnurbein told The Jerusalem Post on Monday. A year after the EU created the new role and tapped von Schnurbein to take it on, the German official emphasizes the importance of using a holistic approach to tackle antisemitism and other forms of racism and xenophobia.
Indeed, when she was appointed last December, her colleague David Friggieri was designated the role of coordinator to combat anti-Muslim hatred, and the pair work closely together.
“While the phenomena are very different, some of the instruments are the same,” von Schnurbein said. For instance, the code of conduct on countering illegal hate speech online – established this year together with leading IT companies – covers all illegal hate speech. In addition, legislation on racism and xenophobia in Europe applies to issues faced by both communities.
Von Schnurbein mentioned an initiative financed by the European Commission, in which the European Union of Jewish Students collaborated with young Roma and Armenians. “Three communities that have experienced a genocide and now live as a diaspora in Europe,” she said.
A French arts museum defined the death camp Auschwitz as “an architectural achievement of the Bauhaus movement.”
The “Spirit of the Bauhaus,” which opened in October at the Museum of Decorative Arts, includes SS officer Fritz Ertl’s designs for the extermination camp among the major achievements of the modernist art movement and school active in the years preceding the rise of Nazism.
Historians of the movement have debated whether the school, which was denounced as decadent by the Nazi regime, bears responsibility for disciples who went on to work for the Third Reich.
Francis Kalifat, the president of the CRIF umbrella group of French Jewish communities, wrote a letter of protest Friday to the museum director.
In his statement, which Kalifat also sent to Culture Minister Audrey Azoulay, who is Jewish, he wrote: “The Bauhaus movement has enough lovely projects that make it unnecessary to insult the memory” of approximately 1 million Jews who were murdered at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
If a blue-and-white flag with a Star of David and two horizontal stripes were to hang proudly outside a Jewish organization in Boston, it would hardly be news.
Unless, of course, if that happened in 1891 — nearly 60 years before the founding of the State of Israel.
The flag that today is synonymous with the Jewish state has a uniquely American history, reveals new research by Jonathan Sarna, professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis University in suburban Boston.
Scholars previously knew about the existence of the Boston flag, but Sarna’s research — which was presented Monday during a meeting in Jerusalem between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker — illuminated additional points in the flag’s history that helped show its connection to the modern Israeli flag.
The flag was created in 1891 by Rabbi Jacob Baruch Askowith, a Lithuanian immigrant who settled in Boston, for a local Jewish organization, B’nai Zion. It bore striking similarities to today’s Israeli flag — except for the fact that the Star of David in the middle contained the word “Maccabee” in Hebrew letters, referring to the famed Jewish warrior family that defended Jerusalem against the Greeks.
Three-quarters of our planet is covered by water but only one percent of that is fresh water.
Currently, between 2.4 and 2.8 billion people are living in areas with water shortages and by the year 2025, it is expected that two-thirds of the world population will live in regions with high water stress.
One of the areas with permanent water stress is Israel, described in the Bible as a country dependent on rain for its water supply.
So if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today—to love the LORD your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul- then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil. I will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied. Deuteronomy 11:13-17.
These words were spoken by Moses more than 3,300 years ago before the Israeli conquest of the land of Israel.
In 2016 the situation is still the same although Israel managed to solve most of its water problems in recent years despite a severe drought that began after the winter of 2003.
Almost 90 percent of Israeli wastewater is purified and used in irrigation, making it an undisputed world leader in this field, Haaretz reported on Sunday, citing a new report by the country’s Water Authority. Spain, the second-place country, recycles 20 percent of its wastewater, compared to Israel’s 87 percent.
Israel is also a pioneer in desalination, operating Sorek — the world’s largest seawater desalination plant — some 10 miles south of Tel Aviv. While desalinization can be energy intensive and expensive enterprise, the advanced technologies employed at Sorek allow it to produce a thousand liters of drinking water — about what one person in Israel uses in a single week — for 58 U.S. cents.
Israel aims to produce 200 billion gallons of potable water annually through five major desalination plants by 2020, and has shared its expertise in the field to help address water shortages globally, from Egypt to California.
In How Israel Is Solving the Global Water Crisis, which was published in the October 2015 issue of The Tower Magazine, editor David Hazony offered a brief history of how Israel came to lead the world in recycling waste water.
Israel’s top technological university has seen the size of its Arab student body triple over the last decade. This growth spurt, according to the president of the Technion, has nothing to do with affirmative action — which is nonexistent at the university — and everything to do with closing educational gaps.
While Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics said Arabs made up 20.7 percent of Israel’s 8.412 million citizens in 2015, Haaretz newspaper cites the Council for Higher Education as saying that the ratio of Arab students in higher education has only grown modestly over the past five years — from 9.3% to 13.2%.
The great exception to this is the Technion — Israel Institute of Technology, the highly regarded university sometimes referred to as “the MIT of Israel,” where currently 20% of students are Arab.
Prof. Peretz Lavie, the president of the Technion, told The Times of Israel that his university’s achievement is the result of a rigorous program preparing students to meet admissions requirements before they apply. It is, he said, also a total rejection of affirmative action, a policy that usually provides eased admission standards for historically disadvantaged populations.
Twelve years ago, when just 7% of students in the Technion were Arab, the university began its NAM program, a Hebrew acronym that translates roughly as Outstanding Arab Youth. The program, which is paid for by Jewish philanthropy, begins with an all-expenses-paid 10-month “boot camp” in mathematics, physics, English and Hebrew.
Israeli business man and philanthropist Eitan Wertheimer is the founder and primary supporter of the program, which to date has seen 300 participants. (h/t Zvi)
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