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October 27, 2016 / 25 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Georgia’

Florida Awaits Hurricane Matthew, Deadliest Storm Since 2004

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

The deadliest hurricane since 2004 was expected to strike the eastern Florida coast by Thursday night, prompting the state’s governor to plead with residents to “evacuate, evacuate, evacuate.”

Matthew is a Category 4 hurricane, just one level short of the deadliest storm possible, and considered to be the strongest in decades.

The island nation of Haiti this week lost 98 lives to Matthew; four other people died in the Dominican Republic when the hurricane hit that nation’s coast.

In Florida, a state of emergency has already been declared and some two million residents have been urged by Florida Governor Rick Scott to evacuate their homes in anticipation of damage from the storm. Winds could reach up to 145 miles per hour at landfall.

The Florida governor activated 2,500 members of the National Guard to help keep order as people prepare for the storm. Nearly 1600 flights have already been cancelled. Gas stations are emptying, and grocery store shelves are just about bare. Trains and cruise ships in south Florida are suspending service.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warned in a bulletin, “extremely dangerous Hurricane Matthew heading for Florida.” The site has updated advisories on the latest status of the storm, and its current location.

According to The Weather Channel, Matthew is expected to be the strongest Florida East Coast strike since Hurricane Andrew, and likely to also bring similar destruction to the Georgia coast and to the coast of South Carolina, with dangerous, life-threatening storm surge and flooding rains expected.

“The eyewall may deliver the strongest, most destructive winds anyone in parts of the northeast and east-central Florida coast has seen in their lifetime,” according to the site. “The last, and only Category 4 hurricane to make landfall anywhere in northeast Florida or the Georgia coast was an 1898 hurricane south of St. Simons Island, Georgia.”

Florida Governor Rick Scott warned residents in a media briefing on Thursday: “Do not surf. Do not go on the beach. This will kill you… There is no reason not to leave… Millions will lose power, possibly for a long period of time. My goal is to make sure everyone is prepared. Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate.”

Hana Levi Julian

Israelis Placing at the Top at Science Olympics Around the World

Sunday, August 21st, 2016

By Michael Zeff/TPS

While Israel’s top athletes are competing in the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, some young Israeli scientists have been winning a remarkable number of medals at the “science olympics” around the globe. An Israeli delegation of high-school students won two medals on Friday at the International Olympiad in Informatics held in Kazan, Russia.

Tomer Adar, a student at the Ruppin School in Emek Hefer, won a silver medal at the Olympiad, and Liran Markin, a student at the WIZO high school in Nahalal, took bronze. The delegation was also comprised of Noam Ta-Shma from Tel Aviv and Ron Solan from Herzliya and was coached by Dr. David Ginat of Tel Aviv University.

“Israeli students repeatedly achieve international success in scientific competitions and bring honor and pride to the State of Israel,” said Education Minister Naftali Bennett.

The competition included delegations from 81 countries while Israel ranked at 28th place overall. China was ranked first, followed by Russia and the United States.

The victory at the competition marks the fourteenth by Israelis this summer at science olympiads. An Israeli delegation also won the silver and bronze medals and ranked 20th in the world at the Chemistry Olympiad held in Tbilisi, Georgia earlier in August.

Other achievements include six medals at the Mathematics Olympiad held in Hong Kong and four medals at the Physics Olympiad held in Zurich, Switzerland.

President Reuven Rivlin held a reception in honor of some of the young scientists at his residence in Jerusalem on Sunday where he thanked them for their achievements.

“Good morning to you my champions. I thank you in the name of the entire nation for your achievements,” the president greeted the medalists of the Chemistry Olympiad, Ron Solan and Sevostianov.

Michael Bachner contributed to this report.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Israeli Yarden Gerbi Wins Bronze Medal

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

Israel has picked up its first medal in the Olympic Games in Rio: judoka Yarden Gerbi won a bronze medal after defeating Japanese Miku Tashiro. This is Israel’s eighth Olympic medal to date (6 of which are bronze), fourth in Judo competitions.

Judoka Sagi Muki lost to Georgia’s Lasha Shavdatuashvili in the bronze medal match.

Windsurfer Maayan Davidovich has moved up to fifth place after six races.

Windsurfer Shahar Tzuberi is in 20th place after six races.

Tennis player Dudi Sela was defeated in the second round by Belgian David Goffin 6:3, 6:3.

Swimmer Ziv Kalontarov was unable to advance to the next phase in 100 meters freestyle.

Follow the Israeli team in Rio here.


Israeli Students Win Big In Chemistry Olympics

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

By Tzvi Lev/TPS

Georgia (TPS) – The International Chemistry Olympiad was a rousing success for Israel, as the Jewish State’s high school delegation took home two medals and was placed amongst the world’s top 20.

“Israel’s students bring pride and honor in international contests time after time” praised Education Minister Naftali Bennett. “For a student to succeed and achieve prizes in something that is also a hobby is a formula for success.”The Israeli delegation won the Silver and Bronze medals, ranked 20th worldwide, and second in Western countries, one spot behind the United States.

Professor Zev Gross of Technion University accompanied the Israeli team, and offered lavish praise. “This year, we noticed a significant improvement, not just in the medals but the high scores that the Israeli received in the competition.

The Chemistry competition was held in Tbilisi, Georgia, with 66 countries participating. Romania won first place, with China winning the second and third spots.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Exclusive: Lawmaker’s Slur That Jews are ‘Termites’ Reminds Jewish Voter of Hitler’s ‘Vermin’

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

A vicious anti-Semitic slur flung by a Democratic member of Congress on Monday against Israeli Jews living in Judea and Samaria hit one Jewish voter square in the face with the ice-cold memory of another time, when similar words were spoken.

With just one word, U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson of Georgia proved to anyone who bothered to pay attention that the Democratic Party is no longer the traditional safe haven of the American Jew.

Speaking in Philadelphia at an pre-Democratic National Convention event sponsored by a group from the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement, the House Armed Services Committee member compared the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria to “termites,” according to the Washington Free Beacon.

Outraged, Sara Z. told JewishPress.com that anti-Semitism in the American Democratic Party is growing by leaps and bounds.

In an exclusive interview, Sara (who requested anonymity out of fear of reprisal from neighbors) said the phenomenon is “similar to the rising anti-Semitism in Britain’s Labour Party.” She said it has destroyed a party where Jews once felt welcomed — and that she could see that day coming for Democrats in the U.S., maybe sooner than they realized. “Perhaps Senator Hank Johnson has forgotten history, or is this another way to echo Adolf Hitler’s sentiments? In 1938 the anti-Semitic rhetoric was that Jews were “vermin,” she said.

“In 2016, we are now “termites.” It seems like nothing changes. In the era of ‘Black Lives Matter’ it seems that once again, the Jews are the world’s scapegoats, the disposable ones,” she continued.

“Do we never learn from history?”

According to the Washington Free Beacon, Johnson’s address to the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation included the following remarks:

“There has been a steady [stream], almost like termites can get into a residence and eat before you know that you’ve been eaten up and you fall in on yourself, there has been settlement activity that has marched forward with impunity and at an ever-increasing rate to the point where it has become alarming.

“It has come to the point that occupation, with highways that cut through Palestinian land, with walls that go up, with the inability or the restriction, with the illegality of Palestinians being able to travel on those roads and those roads cutting off Palestinian neighborhoods from each other,” Johnson continued.

“And then with the building of walls and the building of check points that restrict movement of Palestinians. We’ve gotten to the point where the thought of a Palestinian homeland gets further and further removed from reality.

“You see one home after another being appropriated by Jewish people who come in to claim that [Arab] land just because somebody did not spend the night there,” he said. ‘“The home their ancestors lived in for generations becomes an Israeli home and a flag goes up. The Palestinians are barred from flying flags in their own neighborhoods.

“The fact is the Israeli government, which is the most right-wing government ever to exist in the State of Israel in its history, the most right wing government, you got a guy like Trump who is now the Minister of Defense in Israel calling the shots on defense,” he said.

Hana Levi Julian

Former Religious Settler Cleared to Command Police Dept.

Thursday, October 1st, 2015

The next commander of the police force is going to be religious and with experience as the deputy chief of the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet).

The committee that must approve senior government appointments, and which is headed by former Supreme Court Justice Yaakov Turkel, cleared Roni Alsheich for the position as police commander on Thursday.

The next and final step before Alsheich takes his new post is approval by the Cabinet, where little or no opposition is expected.

The quick approval by the committee was light years away from the painful and drawn-out process after Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan nominated former senior IDF office Gal Hirsch to take over the police department.

The Turkel committee took nearly a month before stating it could not reach a conclusion, but the nomination of Hirsch was scuttled by Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein, who decided to interfere in announcing that it could take weeks or even longer before completing an investigation of charges of wrongdoing concerning Hirsch’s arms-trading company that dealt with Georgia.

Erdan wasted no time in coming up with Alsheich as his next choice, proving his determination that the next police chief will be from outside the force that has been plagued by scandals ranging from sexual harassment to bribery. Alsheich, whose name was not disclosed until earlier this week, joined the Shin Bet in 1987 after having served an IDF Paratroop officer.

He is a former resident of Samaria but now lives in central Israel, is married and has seven children and seven grandchildren.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Israeli Tourism Helps Inscribe Georgian Jewry in the Book of Life

Sunday, September 20th, 2015

It seems that just as the Book of Life might have been closing on the Jewish community in Georgia, Israeli tourism is breathing a second chance into its cities and institutions.

At least three new Jewish restaurants and several new hostels have opened in Georgia’s capital city of Tbilisi due to Israeli tourism, according to Israel’s Tourism Ministry.

The “Restaurant Jerusalem” in central Tbilisi – it’s run by Israeli Georgians – or the King David restaurant, run by native Georgian Jews, which can be found in the courtyard of the synagogue.

Chabad-Lubavitch emissary to Tbilisi Rabbi Meir Kozlovsky says Israelis have found the city to be a new alternative to Turkey.

The spiritual leader of the Great Synagogue of Tbilisi, Rabbi Rachamim Murdukhashvili is also the shochet (ritual slaughterer) of the community.

A second synagogue in Oni, about 120 miles northwest of the city, was visited last month by Prime Minister Iralki Garibashvili to mark its 120th anniversary. But only 16 Jews remain in Oni, and it’s not clear how much longer that community can hang on.

The Georgian government under Garibashvili partly funded renovations at both synagogues, calling Georgia “the second homeland of the Jewish people.”

The traditions of the Jewish community in the country go back as far as 1,500 years, although today there are just 4,000 Jews left in Georgia.

A veritable tidal wave of some 60,000 new tourists are now visiting the country annually, according to the Tourism Ministry, tripling the number that visited Tbilisi in 2010 – when Turkey severed ties with Israel.

Israeli Jewish tourists have been searching for a new tourism “hot spot” ever since the bottom fell out of tourism to Turkey, the annual vacation destination everyone chose.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s rage at Israel had escalated step by step since the 2006 Second Lebanon War over the IDF’s defense of southern Israeli communities from Gaza terrorist attacks.

It finally reached the breaking point in 2010 over the deaths of nine violent Turkish terror activists in clashes with IDF commandos they attacked when they boarded a flotilla vessel that had brazenly attempted to illegally breach Israel’s maritime blockade of Gaza.

Countless attempts by diplomats and others on both sides since to heal the broken ties have only been partly successful; each time there appears to be any chance of renewal of ties, Erdogan appears to deliberately sabotage the effort with anti-Semitic rhetoric.

Thus the Israeli public has made its peace with the fact that at least for now, Turkey is no longer likely to return as a popular tourism destination; it is clear “from the top” that Israelis are neither liked nor wanted there.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israeli-tourism-helps-inscribe-georgian-jewry-in-the-book-of-life/2015/09/20/

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