web analytics
October 23, 2016 / 21 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Tel Aviv’

Public Pre-Yom Kippur ‘Kapparot’ Ceremonies Banned in 3 Israeli Cities

Monday, October 10th, 2016

The annual ritual of kapparot has been banned this year – at least in public places – in the cities of Petah Tikva, Rishon Lezion and in Tel Aviv.

The practice involves a pre-Yom Kippur ritual in which a chicken is swung gently over the head of the individual who recites a prayer of penitence, in which he offers the chicken in exchange for himself as expiation for his sins.

A hen is used for a woman or girl, a rooster for a man or boy. For a pregnant woman, both.

The chicken, which is purchased alive, is then donated to a charity organization which then ritually slaughters the bird in accordance with the kosher laws of the Torah, and distributes the meat to needy Jewish families.

“We will not allow slaughter or any other harm to befall animals in order to fulfill the kapparot ritual in open places or in the public arena,” the Tel Aviv municipality announced in a statement last week.

“As a city that champions animal rights, the municipality sees itself as obligated to prevent any harm to animals and to maintain their rights, for the same reason it has prohibited the use of animals in circuses.”

In Petah Tikva the municipality warned that performance of the kapparot ritual, even without slaughtering the chicken afterwards – as is customary in many places – requires the approval of the city’s veterinary service.

The issue of religious practice versus “animal rights” has long been a bitter dispute in the United States and Europe, but has gradually become an issue in Israel as well.

In some cases abroad, animal rights organizations use the opportunity to file full-blown lawsuits against Jewish groups who sponsor the annual religious ritual, which groups also use as a fundraiser to help create the annual fund from which they assist needy families.

Hana Levi Julian

Israel’s 9th President Shimon Peres Dead at 93

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

Shimon Peres, Israel’s ninth President, former Prime Minister, Nobel Prize winner, who served for nearly five decades as a member of the Knesset, passed away on Wednesday morning at age 93, following a severe stroke. He will be buried in a state funeral in the plot on Mt. Herzl dedicated to the nation’s great leaders. Peres was married to the late Sonia Peres who died in 2011. They had three children: Tsvia Walden, Yonatan (Yoni) Peres, and Nehemia (Chemi) Peres.

Peres was born on August 2, 1923 as Shimon Perski (a relative of Lauren Bacall a.k.a. Joan Persky), in Wiszniew, Poland (now Vishnyeva, Belarus). In 1934, together with his mother Sara and younger brother Gershon, they followed his father, who made aliyah in 1932. Peres grew up in Tel Aviv and studied at the Ben Shemen agricultural school. He met Sonia in Ben Shemen and they got married in 1945.

Peres became active in the Socialist youth movement Hanoar Haoved and in 1947 was recruited by Levy Eshkol to serve in the Hagana underground headquarters, alongside Eshkol and David Ben-Gurion. In 1953, after a stint as head of naval services in the newly formed IDF, Peres was appointed (at age 29) as Director of the Defense Ministry by Ben-Gurion.

His mission, and greatest achievement as head of Israel’s fledgling defense apparatus, was to turn Israel into a nuclear power. Peres began negotiations with the French in October 1956, during the Sinai War, which was a collaboration of Israel, France and Great Britain to take over the Suez Canal from the revolutionary government in Cairo. Peres stressed Israel’s loyalty to France and the fact that a strong Israel is vital to the French national interest, seeing as the Egyptians were supporting the Algerian FLN underground whose aim was to expel the French from North Africa.

According to Peres’ biographer Michael Bar Zohar, the birth of the Dimona nuclear plant was an exciting tale of intrigue, as the promise to provide the technology was made by French Defense Minister Maurice Bourgès-Maunoury, but on the date set for signing the secret deal, the French government collapsed in the National Assembly. Peres was waiting for Bourgès in his chambers with a bottle of whisky, only to discover that his host was out of office and that his likely successor, Gen. Charles de Gaulle, objected to spreading French nuclear know-how. Peres took advantage of the fact that Bourgès would on occasion tell his wife that he was in a meeting with the Israeli visitor when he was actually meeting with his lover, and demanded to cash his chips with the fallen politician. They agreed to backdate the agreement to the day before, when Bourgès still had the authority to sign it. The Frenchman said “D’accord” and the deal to set Israel up as the sole nuclear power in the Middle East was signed — fraudulently.

In 1959, Peres was elected to the Knesset as member of the ruling Mapai Party, and continued to serve as MK and in various ministerial positions, including as prime minister, almost uninterruptedly for 48 years. In 1965, Peres followed his mentor Ben-Gurion out of Mapai, and formed, together with former Chief of Staff Moshe Dayan, the Rafi party. After the 1967 war, an alignment of Mapai, Rafi and Ahdut Haavoda formed the Israel Labor Party, now also known as the Zionist Camp.

In 1973, after the Yom Kippur war which created a wave of anti-Labor sentiment in the public at large, and following the resignation of Prime Minister Golda Meir and Defense Minister Dayan, only two labor senior politicians retained their public prestige: Shimon Peres and former Chief of Staff and Ambassador to the US Yizhak Rabin. Rabin won and went on to become prime minister, with Peres as his defense minister, and their campaign for the leadership of Labor started two decades of enmity combined with forced cooperation which culminated in Peres eventually presenting to Rabin the Oslo agreements as an almost fait accompli.

In 1976, as defense minister, Peres was responsible for the Antebe Operation. Meanwhile, his disagreements with Rabin led to the latter’s resignation and the 1977 elections that, for the first time in Israel’s history, placed Likud’s Menahem Begin at the country’s helm. In the 1980s, as Labor’s leader, Peres failed to gain a resounding victory over his rightwing foes, and ended up in a coalition government with Likud in which he and Yitzhak Shamir rotated in the role of prime minister. While serving as Shamir’s foreign minister, Peres launched the London Agreement, a precursor of the Oslo Accord, which was torpedoed by Shamir.

In 1992, with Rabin once again the leader, Labor won the elections and formed a narrow, leftwing coalition government that relied on the Arab votes in the Knesset. Peres and his emissary Dr. Yossi Beilin began secret, illegal negotiations with the PLO, which resulted in the August 20, 1993 Oslo deal. The agreement, which resuscitated a dying PLO and gave it dominion over the Gaza Strip, Judea and Samaria, resulted, as many had predicted, in rivers of blood, as the Arabs residing in the newly formed Palestinian Authority launched a campaign of bombing and shooting attacks against Israeli civilian centers. In 1995, on the eve of the next elections, Prime Minister Rabin was assassinated and replaced by Peres.

In 1996 Peres lost his final bid for sole possession of the Prime Minister’s office when he lost the election to newcomer Benjamin Netanyahu. The televised debate between them showed the nation a tired, old political hack versus a youthful and well spoken leader. Netanyahu succeeded in forming his first coalition government despite the fact that his party had won by a mere 30,000 votes.

At that point, possibly the lowest in his political life, Shimon Peres reinvented himself and began the next phase in his career, as statesman inspiring an entire world. He founded the Peres Center for Peace, and although he continued to serve in the Knesset and was member of Ehud Barak’s security cabinet, his goals have changed. In 2005 Peres resigned from the Labor party to join Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s government, to support the second assault on Jewish life in the 1967 liberated territories: the expulsion of the Jews of Gush Katif. His reward was his election by the Knesset to be Israel’s ninth president in 2007. He gained 58 out of the 120 MK votes in the first round (38 voted for Reuven Rivlin, 21 for Colette Avital). His opponents then threw their support to Peres in the second round and he received 86 votes, with 23 objections.

He spent his seven years in office in an indefatigable global activity, attending conferences, giving speeches around the planet, meeting world leaders and becoming synonymous with the image of Israel’s future as drawn by Israel’s leftwing. He maintained his rigorous schedule after the end of his term in 2014, until, two weeks ago, his body succumbed to a stroke.

His death marks the end of Israel’s generation of founding politicians. He will be remembered for his great contribution to the Jewish State’s military supremacy in the Middle East, but also for his grave mistakes in acting to reverse the same state’s remarkable territorial gains of 1967. May his memory be blessed.


Iran Threatens to Turn Tel Aviv, Haifa to ‘Dust’

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016

Tehran is back to threatening Israel, this time during a parade marking the anniversary of the 1980 Iraqi invasion of Iran, a war that lasted eight years.

A wide variety of military hardware was on display Wednesday during the parade, which made its way down the main drag in the nation’s capital. Included was the Qadr H missile, which allegedly has a range of 2,000 kilometers.

Long-range ballistic missiles, tanks and the Russian-produced S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system were all in full view as the gala parade was broadcast on state television.

One military truck displayed a banner shown prominently on the broadcast that read:

“If the leaders of the Zionist regime make a mistake, then the Islamic Republic will turn Tel Aviv and Haifa to dust.”

The Iranian Navy showed off 500 vessels, along with submarines and helicopters, at the port of Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf.

Iran has tested American mettle more than 30 times so far this year with close encounters in the Gulf between its vessels and those of the United States Navy, according to U.S. officials quoted by Reuters.

Hana Levi Julian

I’ve Been Working on the Railroad ♫

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016

Repair and upgrade work on three of Tel Aviv’s four railway stations is causing major traffic jams as Israel Railways carry out extensive repair and upgrade work on the tracks leading into the city over the next few days.

Railroad Worj & Repair Tel Aviv

Railroad Worj & Repair Tel Aviv

Photo of the Day

Slow Improvement in Medical Condition of Former President Shimon Peres

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

by Jonathan Benedek The medical condition of former Israeli President Shimon Peres has improved to the level where he is stable and responsive, according to the most recent update from Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer, where he is receiving care.

“After 24 hours of evaluating the ninth president, Mr. Peres, I can say that he is still in fairly serious condition, but that he is stable and that we are seeing some improvement,” said Sheba Medical Center Director Professor Yitzhak Kreiss.

“I am pleased to say that he understands what is being said to him, is responsive, and even warmly squeezed my hand,” added Peres’s personal physician and son-in-law Professor Rafi Walden. “We are impressed by the way that his recognition capability has improved considerably in the last few hours.”

Peres was sedated Tuesday night to faciliate care by his medical team; his condition improved Wednesday to the point that the doctors began to reduce the dose of anesthetic medications.

“We are trying to reduce some of the sedation in order to evaluate him and that is a good sign,” Kreiss added. “We will continue to evaluate him in the neurosurgery intensive care unit.”

Although Peres is stable, he will remain sedated and on a respirator in order to prevent his condition from deteriorating.

“We will continue to sedate him in order to ease his breathing and prevent him from getting upset about things that are happening around him, that could raise his blood pressure more than it is neurologically necessary,” explained Walden. “The very mild anesthesia allows him to rest completely and provides optimal conditions for his brain to recover.”

Peres’s son-in-law also took the opportunity to express gratitude not only to Sheba Medical Center, but to all those who have sent warm wishes and have prayed for a speedy recovery.

“As his family’s representative and a member of the staff at Sheba Medical Center, we are extremely grateful for the excellent treatment he is receiving, along with the tremendous waves of love that are being sent to us from around the country and around the world,” said Walden.

“The positive attention and well wishes that we are receiving help to strengthen the family in these difficult times and show that we are not alone.”

The name of the former president for those who wish to include it in prayers is Shimon ben Sara.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Largest Archaeological Garden Ever in Israel Inaugurated at IDF Kirya Base in Tel Aviv

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

In a festive ceremony attended by Israel Defense Force chief of staff Gadi Eizenkot, the director of the Israel Antiquities Authority and a representative of the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, the largest archaeological garden ever built in Israel was inaugurated Tuesday at the IDF Kirya base in Tel Aviv.

The exhibition – A Tumultuous City – is situated in the heart of “The City that Never Sleeps” and presents dozens of impressive items from major cities in the ancient world.

Among the most unique exhibitions are a stone that weighs six tons from the Western Wall.

In addition to the IDF chief of staff, IAA irector Israel Hasson, a representative of the Heritage Project in the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, the Camp Rabin base commander Colonel Yigal Ben-Ami and senior officials of the IDF and the IAA were on hand for the festivities.

Hasson told those gathered, “The IAA seeks to expose soldiers – our future generation – to their past. The exhibition, which we organized in the epicenter of the army, brings a reminder that spans thousands of years of history to the daily life of tens of thousands of soldiers and visitors, that we are part of a chain of magnificent life. The exhibition was established as part of the IAA’s outreach policy of sharing our heritage with the public, whether in setting up exhibitions in public places or encouraging soldiers, pupils in military preparatory programs and youth to participate in archaeological excavations”.

According to the Minister of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, Ze’ev Elkin, “The importance of the presence of our heritage in the heart of the Kirya base in Tel Aviv, where all of the army’s senior officers pass, constitutes another tier in our national strength, resulting from the recognition of our heritage and the deep understanding of each soldier and officer that our future depends on our past and our heritage here in Israel”.

Minister of Culture and Sport, Miri Regev said, “The decision to inaugurate an archaeological garden here in the base of the IDF general staff conveys first and foremost an important moral message – recognition of Israel’s history is essential in building the image of the soldier who knows his past, understands the challenges of the present and is always ready to ensure the future of his people for the sake of future generations”.

Camp Rabin Commander Colonel Yigal Ben-Ami, added, “A people needs to be aware of its past. About 25,000 people pass by here every day and they will now have direct contact with their heritage. The new garden is an amazing connection between what we went through and our revival”.

According to Ayelet Grover, curator of the exhibition on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, “The Hebrew word kirya first appears in the Book of Isaiah (22:2), meaning “town”, where it is written: ‘a tumultuous city, exultant town.’

“In a bustling place like the Kirya base, which is in the heart of The City that Never Sleeps – the economic, cultural and arts center of Israel, it was appropriate that we organize an archaeological exhibition in the city, which deals with human culture and the development of urban space.

“The exhibition tells the story of the oldest cities in Israel, the most ancient of which were established 5,000 years ago, and some of them still exist today.

“The presentation of stones that come from the earth and hold within them memory, history and culture, especially in a place where the full-force of contemporary architecture is present, creates, in my opinion, a thought-provoking dialogue between past, present and future,” she said.

Hana Levi Julian

Mighty British ‘Queen’ Rock Band Seizes the Night, the Crowd and Traffic in Tel Aviv [video]

Monday, September 12th, 2016

The majestic, iconic, legendary classic rock group Queen performed Monday night in Tel Aviv, delighting fans and snarling traffic for miles around from east to west.

The mightiest of all rock bands since its formation in 1970, Queen is down to the two final original members, super-smooth guitarist Brian May and and the always-vigorous drummer Roger Taylor.

But the British band is led by the completely talented 34-year-old Jewish American lead singer Adam Lambert – a man with glam and a range and falsetto to match the best that original front man Freddie Mercury had to offer. How much better can you get for a show in the Land?

Queen has for decades been known for its signature span of musical styles, and its ability to merge classical opera with rock, jazz and soul. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is just one example of the musical mashup for which the band became justly famous, and which sank numerous vocalists who tried in vain to make the wild octave jump necessary to complete the entire piece.

True afficionados have loved it, and loved Queen from childhood straight into the geriatric generation. Ask any anglo living in any city in Israel. When the news broke in June that the group would at last perform in the Jewish State, the initial whispered rumors became a roar, along with concerns “the boycott” would get in the way. But doubters had little to fear.

Nothing stopped the band from coming to Israel: Not threats of boycotts, BDS nor deeply disapproving no-no looks from snooty rock colleagues like Roger Waters. And absolutely nothing stopped loyal fans from coming to the concert at Yarkon Park from the very ends of the country. The faithful streamed in to the concert in Tel Aviv from as far away as the tiny northeastern Negev city of Arad, near the southern tip of the Dead Sea.

“”Not go to a Queen concert? You’re kidding, right?” Esty, a loyal millenial fan told JewishPress.com in horror. She and a friend and the friend’s parents were on the highway, with cell phone reception limping but enthusiasm undiminished. “We’ll hike it if we have to.”

Police later informed fellow officers and first responders via scanners and on chat with some resignation that in the wake of the concert there was little that could be done about the problems with the traffic backups.

Following a performance by Queen, traffic was simply “jammed on the main artery from east to west,” one said on a chat. “The parking lots, Yarkon Park, the University train and the drive-in — forget it. They’re just packed.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/mighty-british-rock-band-queen-seizes-the-night-the-crowd-and-the-traffic-at-tel-avivs-yarkon-park/2016/09/12/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: