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December 5, 2016 / 5 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Italy’

Italy’s PM Matteo Renzi: UNESCO Resolution on Jerusalem ‘Like Saying Sun Creates Darkness’

Monday, October 24th, 2016

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi vows that from now on his nation will vote against anti-Israel resolutions like the one passed by the United Nations Education, Science and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), obliterating Judaism’s historic link with Jerusalem.

Italy abstained in the vote, as did 25 other nations, while 24 member states voted in favor of the resolution. Only six countries had the courage to oppose the resolution advanced by the Palestinian Authority, which labels the Temple Mount and the Western Wall solely by their Muslim names and refers to them only as Islamic holy sites. The resolution contains one single line referring to the Old City of Jerusalem and its walls as being holy to Islam, Christianity and the Jewish people – in that order and worded in that way.

On Friday, Renzi told an Italian radio station during a visit to Brussels, “It is not possible to continue with these resolutions at the UN and UNESCO that aim to attack Israel.

“It is shocking and I have ordered that we stop taking this position (abstaining) even if it means breaking ranks from the position taken by the rest of Europe.

“I have asked diplomats handling these issues to cease doing so. If anyone wants to say something about Israel, let them say it, but they shouldn’t use UNESCO…

“To say that the Jews have no links to Jerusalem is like saying the sun creates darkness,” Renzi said.

The Italian prime minister also vowed to summon Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni when he returns home, to determine why Italy abstained, instead of voting to oppose the resolution.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked Renzi on Saturday for opposing the resolution. In a statement, Netanyahu’s office said the two premiers spoke on Saturday and that the Israeli prime minister told Renzi that “even the theater of the absurd has limits.”

Israel’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nachshon meanwhile warmly congratulated the Italian government and prime minister for his statement. “We hope Italy guides the way for other European countries, and countries all over the world,” Nachshon said.

Parliamentarians from 17 nations visiting Israel last week also condemned the resolution in a statement, calling it “disconnected from reality.” The lawmakers said they would work towards international recognition of Jerusalem as the “undivided, eternal capital of the State of Israel.” Among the nations represented were Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, South Africa, Uruguay, Chile and Costa Rica.

Hana Levi Julian

Iranians Caught With Fake Israeli Passports

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

Israeli intelligence agencies were updated during Yom Kippur that three Iranian citizens were caught in Italy with fake Israeli passports.

They were deported via Serbia to Turkey, according to a report Wednesday night broadcast on Israel’s Channel 2 television news.

Security agencies are investigating the history of the trio to see whether any of the three have carried out terror attacks against Israeli targets in the international arena.

Hana Levi Julian

Archaeologists Restore Second Temple Courtyard Flooring with Help from Mathematician

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

Archaeologists from the Jerusalem-based Temple Mount Sifting Project are confident that they have successfully restored a unique architectural element of the Second Temple: a series of regally decorated floor tiles that adorned the porticos atop the Temple Mount, which were likely featured prominently in the courtyards of the Second Temple during the rule of King Herod in Jerusalem (37 to 4 BCE).

Frankie Snyder, a member of the Temple Mount Sifting Project’s team of researchers and an expert on ancient Herodian style flooring, said he succeeded in restoring the ornate tile patterns “using geometric principles, and through similarities found in tile design used by Herod at other sites.” Snyder, who has an academic background in both mathematics and Judaic Studies, explained that “this type of flooring, called ‘opus sectile,’ Latin for ‘cut work,’ is very expensive and was considered to be far more prestigious than mosaic tiled floors.”

Assortment of Herodian floor tiles / Courtesy City of David

Assortment of Herodian floor tiles / Courtesy City of David

“So far, we have succeeded in restoring seven potential designs of the majestic flooring that decorated the buildings of the Temple Mount,” said Snyder, who noted that there were no opus sectile floors in Israel prior to the time of King Herod. “The tile segments were perfectly inlaid such that one could not even insert a sharp blade between them.”

“It enables us to get an idea of the Temple’s incredible splendor,” said Dr. Gabriel Barkay, co-founder and director of the Temple Mount Sifting Project. The restored tiles will be presented to the general public on September 8, at the 17th Annual City of David Archaeological Conference.

Zigzag Module, Herodian floor tiles / Courtesy City of David

Zigzag Module, Herodian floor tiles / Courtesy City of David

“This represents the first time archaeologists have been able to successfully restore an element from the Herodian Second Temple complex,” said co-founder and director of the Temple Mount Sifting Project Zachi Dvira.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project was established in response to the illegal removal of tons of antiquities-rich earth from the Temple Mount by the Islamic Waqf in 1999. It is located in the Tzurim Valley National Park, and is supported by the City of David Foundation and the Israel Archaeology Foundation. The initiative is run under the auspices of Bar-Ilan University and the Israel Parks & Nature Authority.

To date, approximately 600 colored stone floor tile segments have been uncovered, with more than 100 of them definitively dated to the Herodian Second Temple period. This style of flooring is consistent with those found in Herod’s palaces at Masada, Herodian, and Jericho, as well as in majestic palaces and villas in Italy, also attributed to the time of Herod. The tile segments, mostly imported from Rome, Asia Minor, Tunisia, and Egypt, were created from polished, multicolored stones cut in a variety of geometric shapes. A key characteristic of the Herodian tiles is their size, which corresponds to the Roman measurement of one foot, approximately 29.6 cm.

Herodian floor tiles Opus Collection / Courtesy City of David

Herodian floor tiles Opus Collection / Courtesy City of David

The possibility that large expanses of the Temple Mount during the Second Temple were covered with opus sectile flooring was first raised by archaeologist and director of the Jerusalem Walls National Park with the Israel Nature and Parks Authority Assaf Avraham in 2007.

Avraham’s theory was based on a description given by the Romano-Jewish historian Josephus (1st Century CE) who wrote, “… the uncovered [Temple Mount courtyard] was completely paved with stones of various types and colors…” (The Jewish War 5:2). Additionally, Talmudic literature records the magnificent construction of the Temple Mount, describing rows of marble in different colors — green, blue and white.

“Now, as a result of Frankie Snyder’s mathematical skills, we have succeeded in recreating the actual tile patterns,” said Dr. Barkay, stressing that “this represents the first time that we can see with our own eyes the splendor of the flooring that decorated the Second Temple and its annexes 2,000 years ago.”

Barkay related that in describing the Temple that Herod built, “the Talmud says that ‘Whoever has not seen Herod’s building has not seen a beautiful building in his life,'” so that although our generation has not yet merited to see the Temple in its glory, “with the discovery and restoration of these unique floor tiles we are now able to have a deeper understanding and appreciation for the Second Temple, even through this one distinctive characteristic.”

Since the Temple Mount Sifting Project’s inception in 2004, more than 200,000 volunteers from around the world have taken part in the sifting, representing an unprecedented phenomenon in the realm of archaeological research.

JNi.Media

Peres Interrupts Busy Schedule to Receive Pace Maker

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Former president Shimon Peres is expected to undergo surgery to implant a pace maker Monday. Peres, 93, who suffered a mild heart attack three months ago, which was followed with catheterization, will undergo the procedure at Sheba Medical Center near Tel Aviv, with partial anesthesia.

Peres continued his full schedule prior to Monday’s procedure and over the weekend participated in an economic conference on Lake Como, Italy, where he shared a panel with Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal and Wu Hongbo, Under-Secretary-General of the UN. They discussed for two and a half days global risks and their impact on business, as well as the future of the Euro. Prince Al-Faisal, a member of the Saudi royal family, talked about political risks in the Arab region.

A few years ago, Prince Al Faisal told the Daily Mail that Saudi Arabia may have to arm itself with nuclear weapons to counter threats from Iran and Israel. In 1956, Shimon Peres, in his role as Director-General of the Ministry of Defense, was responsible for acquiring a French nuclear reactor that launched Israel’s atomic program.

Small world.

Incidentally, last January, when the former president was rushed to Sheba Medical Center after complaining of chest pains, he had to cancel one of the items on his busy schedule: a visit to the Soreq Nuclear Research Center.

JNi.Media

Hebrew University Launching Israel’s First Wine Making Course

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

In recent years, Israel has experienced significant maturation in its wine industry and a surging local and international demand for its outstanding wines. In response to the growing need for skills and professionalism in the industry, the Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment, at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, has opened Israel’s first academic degree program in wine: the International MSc in Viticulture and Enology. The four-semester MSc program begins on March 2, 2017.

Students will gain knowledge and skills at an academic level, consistent with leading programs in other wine-producing countries such as France, the United States and Australia, with special emphasis on the Israeli industry. Upon completion, the students will earn a world-recognized MSc degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. This is the first MSc level degree in viticulture and enology to be approved by the National Council for Higher Education (CHE) in Israel.

Program leader Prof. Zohar Kerem said: “Following the success of Israel’s wine industry, I’m excited to open a program that puts Israeli research and academia on the international map of winemaking. The program covers topics of a spectrum similar to programs around the world, and has been tailored to fit Israel’s dry conditions. The program is innovative and unique, and the participants will receive training and guidance from leading academics and professionals.

“The program will provide students from around the world an opportunity to obtain a practical Master’s of Science degree, in a fascinating industry that started here 5000 years ago, from one of the world’s top 100 universities. This will be a great opportunity to meet people from around the world, to form an international network, and to taste and produce some delicious wines,” added Prof. Kerem.

Heading the program, and chairman of its academic committee, is Prof. Zohar Kerem, an Associate Professor at the Robert H. Smith Faculty and a world-renowned researcher in food chemistry, wine quality and olive oil. The program’s professional coordinator is Mr. Yotam Sharon, a postgraduate with honors in Enology from the University of Montpellier in France, an MSc graduate of the Smith Faculty, and a leading winemaker at one of Israel’s premier wineries. Other distinguished members of the teaching staff are Prof. Ben-Ami Bravdo, Prof. Oded Shoseyov and Dr. Ron Shapira. Esteemed guest lecturers from abroad will teach various topics.

The MSc is an 18-month academic program that spans four semesters, with classes held two full days per week on Thursdays and Fridays. The program includes theory; practice in a wine-tasting room on the Smith Faculty campus; an internship in cooperation with Soreq Winery, one of Israel’s leading wine producers; and a workshop to be held in Italy or France. Study subjects include:

—The Vineyard: Planning and cultivating; design; grapevine stocks and types; plot preparation; propagation; planting; trellising; pruning; irrigation; fertilization; mechanization; grape quality treatments.

—Wine Production: Equipment and winery management; micro-vinification; chemistry and stability; microbiology; distillation technology; fermentation science.

—Analysis of grape juice and wine: Biosynthesis of taste and odor factors; sensory evaluation of types of wine and defects in wine; sensory evaluation of wines from Israel and the world.

—Additional Courses: Economics, management and marketing in the wine industry; wine workshop and reading seminar in grapevine and wine production (to be conducted abroad).

Candidates must have a full BSc degree from a recognized institution in a related field, such as biology, chemistry or agriculture. Candidates whose background is lacking in specific subjects will be required to complete an individualized Preparatory Program either before or in conjunction with the beginning of the Enology program.

For more information, visit the Hebrew U Dept. of Agriculture, Food and Environment website, or write or call Mrs. Rakefet Kalev, rakefetk@savion.huji.ac.il, +972-8-9489991

David Israel

Final Lavi Trainer Aircraft Delivered to Israel

Wednesday, July 20th, 2016

By Tzvi Lev/TPS

Hatzerim (TPS) – The final three Lavi M-346 trainer aircraft were presented to Israel at an official ceremony marking the completion of a procurement deal between Israel and Italy.

“I can’t remember a deal of this size that was completed without delays and with so much appreciation,” said Defense Ministry Deputy Director General Shmuel Tzuker. “The Lavi contract opened opportunities for deals between Israeli, American, and Italian industries. The Israeli Air Force is now the world’s largest user of the M-346 aircraft and we love it and believe in it.”

The ceremony was held at Hatzerim Air Force Base near Beer Sheva and was attended by both Israeli and Italian officials, including Defense Ministry Director General Udi Adam and Mauro Moretti, the creator of the plane.

Israel had signed an agreement with Italy in 2012 to the tune of NIS 4 billion that would provide Israel with 30 planes. The first plane arrived in 2014 and the rest were delivered at a rate of 1.5 planes a month.

Italy also committed to buying a substantial amount of Israeli defense products as part of the deal.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Qatar Shopping in Italy for $6.2 Billion Worth of Naval Defense

Friday, July 1st, 2016

MBDA Italia secured a contract to provide $1.1 billion worth of missiles for Qatar’s new naval vessels. These missiles include the Aster 30 Block 1, VL MICA air defense missiles and Exocet MM40 Block 3 anti-ship missiles.

A short while ago, Qatar agreed to a $5.1 billion purchase of seven naval vessels from Italy’s Fincantieri shipyard, which include four corvettes, one landing platform dock, and two offshore patrol vessels.

David Israel

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/qatar-shopping-in-italy-for-6-2-billion-worth-of-naval-defense/2016/07/01/

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