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News

| Good News From Israel This Week

Zvi Herman    
Monday, 07 May 2:02 PM
In the 6th May 18 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·         Israeli scientists have found a vital link to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
·         Israeli doctors have saved the lives of many children from Kurdistan.
·         An Israeli startup produces realistic animal-free meat.
·         Israeli desalination will rescue Mexicans from drought.
·         BMW has selected Israeli sensors for its driverless cars.
·         Italy’s top annual bike race has started - in Jerusalem.
·         Guatemala is the first embassy to fly its flag in Jerusalem.

·         Click here to see the 29th Apr newsletter on IsraelSeenRuthfully Yours (plus compliment), Janglo and United With Israel. Also (TY Sandra) in German.

·         Please click here, to donate (a small or large amount) to help me expand the reach of VeryGoodNewsIsrael.

·         Click here, to SEARCH the IsraelActive archives of over 12,000 previous news articles.

·         If someone wishes to be added to the free email subscription list, they should send a request to michael.goodnewsisrael@gmail.com


ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS

Early cancer detection. Scientists at Israel’s Ben-Gurion University and Soroka Medical Center have developed a new non-invasive method to detect the breast cancer biomarker early and accurately. They analyzed breath using electronic nose gas sensors, and urine using gas-chromatography mass spectrometry.

Zebrafish clue to infant crib deaths. Scientists at Israel’s Bar-Ilan University have found a link between body temperature and disturbed sleep from neuronal noise that may explain Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Their research was advanced by analyzing the effect of rising water temperature on the activity of zebrafish.

Innovative solutions for wounded veterans.  200 Israeli tech innovators participated in a 3-day “make-a-thon” in Tel Aviv to address a variety of challenges faced by 12 wounded war veterans (7 Israelis, 6 Americans and one French). “Makers for Heroes” organized by non-profit RESTART, is the first international event of its kind.

Protein shake helps children grow.  I reported previously (May 2015) on the high-protein growth supplement developed by Professor Moshe Phillip at Israel’s Schneider Medical Center. Professor Phillip then co-founded Nutritional Growth Solutions (NG Solutions) and launched its “Healthy Height” shake in the US and Europe.

The “secret” of Israeli longevity.  (TY Nevet) National Geographic Travel suggests reasons for Israel’s consistent position near the top of the world’s longevity scale. It cites the combination of a Mediterranean-style diet, low alcohol consumption, strong family and cultural values, and an excellent healthcare system.


ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL

Teaching Israelis to fish. (TY David L) There is a Jewish motto – give a poor person a fish and he will eat for a day.  Teach him to fish and he will feed himself.  Israel’s Chaim BePlus provides courses in personal financial management to young adults aged 17-21 to give them the tools to become independent and self-sufficient.

Haredi women cyber graduates. Israel’s Ministry of Welfare and Social Services has announced the first graduates from its cyber training course for Jewish ultra-Orthodox women. The Government regards inclusion of the Haredi in Israel’s lucrative tech industry as vital for Israel’s economic growth and stability.

Israel’s world-class universities.  (TY Nevet) US entrepreneur Stephen Grand highlights the good value of Israeli universities. Factors include lower faculty salaries and student costs and hence more undergraduates; focus on academic papers and research; advanced labs; and international partnerships (industry and academia).

The diversity of the IDF.  (TY Nevet) Good article discussing the role of the IDF in Israeli society. Developing skills, training for civilian life; developing leaders; integrating immigrants; learning colloquial Hebrew; encouraging minorities; and promoting fair and equal treatment for every individual.

Connecting Jews and Arabs through soccer.  Israeli non-profit Kulna Yerushalayim (We are all Jerusalem) is organizing a summer soccer event for some 200 Jerusalem Jewish and Arab kids. It will include live music, sports legends and screenings of the World Cup matches on the ancient walls surrounding the Old City.

Time Magazine’s most influential people.  “Wonder Woman” actress Gal Gadot and WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann are two Israelis named by Time Magazine in this year’s “100 most influential people”.

The first Israeli President to visit Ethiopia. President Reuven Rivlin has made the first visit by an Israeli head of state to Ethiopia. He and his delegation sought “to deepen our friendship and cooperation with Ethiopia”, particularly in water technology, health, agriculture, food security, cyberspace and countering terrorism.

Saving Kurdish children. (TY UWI & I24 News) Christian charity Shevet Achim has been bringing sick children from Kurdistan to Israel for life-saving treatment in Israeli hospitals, such as Sheba, Tel Hashomer.

Israeli-style farm for at risk Tanzanian kids. In 2017 Tanzanian community developer and environmentalist Fabian Bulugu volunteered at Kaima - an organization that uses organic farming to give Israeli high-school dropouts an income and a fresh start on life. Now Fabian is building a similar social farm in Tanzania.

New Tanzanian embassy. Tanzania is opening its first embassy in Israel on May 8th.  The grand opening of the embassy in Ramat Gan will be attended by Tanzania's Foreign Minister Augustine Mahiga. Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked visited Tanzania in March.


SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

7 Edison Awards.  Edison Awards recognize and honor the most innovative products and business leaders in the world. This year Israeli companies won 4 gold awards and 3 bronzes. Gold went to SolarEdge, Insightec, Livia (iPulse Medical) and Secdo. Bronze went to Anagog, NovoCure and Innoviz. (see all in IsraelActive)

4 Fortress awards. Four Israel-based and Israel-founded cybersecurity companies won 2018 Fortress Cyber Security Awards from Business Intelligence Group. They are Dojo Labs (see here), Deep Instinct (see here), Zimperium (see here) and Cymulate (see here).

Tech training for Israeli diplomats.  Prior to overseas assignments, Israeli diplomats will now receive training in technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship. The program was designed by the Israeli Innovation Authority, the Israeli Export Institute, the Ministries of Economy and Science and Technology, and local tech companies.

Using data for social good.  The sixth Data Mining for Business Intelligence conference in May at Ben-Gurion University will be preceded by a Data Hackathon for social good. Prizes up to NIS 10,000 are offered for solutions to adverse medication interactions, malicious IoT devices and improving weather prediction.

How to back-up the Internet?  (TY TIP) Israel hosted a unique international conference, “Web Archiving: Best Practices for Digital Cultural Heritage” at the National Library of Israel in Jerusalem. It addresses the problem of preserving 30 years of historical material on the Internet in case an important site is shut down.

Get back in the air fast.  Israel’s Pzartech is working with the Hanger Labs innovation hub of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to reduce aircraft downtime during maintenance. Pzartech’s systems helps to speedily identify and obtain the relevant mechanical parts.  Pzartech is now adapting their system for vehicle maintenance.

Animal-free meat can look like meat.  Aleph Farms is one of several Israeli startups developing “cultured” meat (see here) grown in a clean environment and not in animals. Aleph’s product is closer to farmed meat in shape, texture and taste due to its Technion-developed 3D technology that grows it from 4 types of animal cells.

The world’s 16th greenest city. (TY Nevet) Tel Aviv is the 16th greenest city in the world, according to the latest study by online travel specialist TravelBird. The aim of its GreenCities index is to analyze both natural and man-made areas and recommend the best urban destinations for eco-conscious travelers.

Safer and more efficient cycling. Israeli-founded startup Watteam has developed a device and mobile app that measures the actual amount of force a cyclist is using, to help enhance performance and prevent injuries. Watteam has sold 2,000 units since its Sept launch and has just raised $5 million of funding.

Desalination plant for Mexico.  Fluence Corporation (a merger of Israel’s Emefcy and US RWL Water) is to build a 5.8 million gallon/day seawater desalination plant that will supply 100,000 residents of the Mexican state of Baja California. The Mexican government has declared a drought in the area since 2014.


ECONOMY & BUSINESS

Tourism smashes records again. (TY Nevet) Israel welcomed 949,000 tourists in the first 3 months of 2018 – up 29% on the same quarter of 2017. March’s year-on-year increase was 34%, with the biggest increases from Poland (136%), Sweden (90%), Spain (68%), Germany (55%) and France (49%).

3rd China-Israel route for Hainan Airlines.  Hainan Airlines is to begin a direct route to Tel Aviv from the Chinese city of Guangzhou. The airline already flies direct from Tel Aviv to both Beijing and Shanghai. In its first year of operation Hainan flew over 76,000 passengers between Tel Aviv and Beijing.

Video goes into reverse.  In 2012, electronic giant Cisco Systems bought Israeli video software company NDS for $5 billion. Cisco is now focusing on core business and has sold the NDS unit back to its original controlling shareholder Permira Holdings for $1 billion.  NDS’ original CEO Abe Peled will become its new Chairman.

Alibaba founder visits Israel.  Chinese business magnate and investor Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba arrived in Israel with a delegation of 35 people. He is to receive an honorary doctorate at Tel Aviv University and tour the country. Alibaba has invested in several Israeli companies (see here) and is opening offices in Tel Aviv.

Israeli sensors for driverless BMWs.  I reported previously (see here) on Israel’s Innoviz and its LiDAR (Light detection and ranging) sensors for autonomous vehicles. Now BMW is to employ Innoviz sensors in its upcoming autonomous vehicle production platforms. BMW aims to launch self-driving cars by 2021.

Big demand for grasshopper protein. I reported previously (see here) on Israel’s Hargol which aims to solve the world’s protein shortage with its farmed grasshoppers. Hargol already received $5 million worth of orders from customers in the U.S. and Europe and interest from Ikea, Whole Foods, Diego (Guinness) and Pepsico.


CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT

Heading Home. (TY David L) I reported previously (18th Mar) on the new film "Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel" showing in the US. Now, the Israel Association of Baseball (IAB) is screening the film on May 7 in Ra'anana and on May 16 in Tel Aviv. All proceeds go to the Team Israel Olympics 2020 effort. 

Ronaldinho’s Israeli football school.  Brazilian soccer star Ronaldinho Gaucho has launched the Ronaldinho Soccer Academy, a football school in Jerusalem for Israelis aged 6 to 16. “I am very excited to help Israeli children of all faiths raise their game to the highest levels,” Ronaldinho said during a news conference.

The first Israeli in NBA playoffs. Just before his 21st birthday, Tel Aviv-born T.J. Leaf became the first Israeli national to play in the NBA playoffs. The Indiana Pacers put him on court for the final three minutes of their 121-87 win against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Gold and 3 bronzes for Israeli Judokas. At the European Judo Championships in Tel Aviv, Israel’s Sagi Muki won gold in the 73–81 kg division. Israelis Tal Flicker (under-66 kg) and Peter Paltchik (under-100kg) won bronze, whilst Gefen Primo won a bronze medal in the women’s under-52 kg category.

Why an Italian bike race starts in Israel. (TY Chloe) In WW2, famous Italian cyclist Gino Bartali used his bicycle frame to smuggle forged documents, saving 800 Jews from death. His bravery made him a hero and inspired the Giro d’Italia 2018 to begin in Israel - the first time the race has opened outside Europe. Great video.

Special winners. (TY Nevet) I reported previously (see here) about Israel’s blind golfer Zohar Sharon. Six-time world champion Zohar has just won the ISPS Handa 2018 US Blind Golf Open in Green Valley, Arizona. Meanwhile shooting Paralympian Yulia Chernoy won bronze at the 2018 World Shooting Para Sport Grand Prix in Szczecin, Poland.  https://www.israel21c.org/israeli-blind-golfer-and-disabled-shooter-win-medals/


THE JEWISH STATE

The next Jerusalem embassy – Paraguay. Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes told attendees at a special event marking Israel’s 70th anniversary that his country would relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. President Cartes said he hoped to perform the relocation before the end of his term in mid-August.

Guatemala is the first. Although it isn’t official yet, the Central American state of Guatemala has become the first country to physically relocate its embassy to Jerusalem.  The Guatemalan flag was seen flying high in the sky above the Malha Technology Park in the Israeli capital, its new location. The official opening is May 14.

Israel is exceptional.  (TY Nevet) Evelyn Gordon’s pre-Independence Day article explains why 90% of Israelis classify themselves as Zionists. Also, despite “complaining” being almost “the national sport”, Israelis are among the world’s happiest people.  https://www.jns.org/opinion/israel-proves-exceptional-once-again/  

Hi-tech reveals hidden text in Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls digitization project has used advanced imaging technology developed for NASA to reveal script invisible to the human eye. New fragments were discovered and identified from the books of Deuteronomy, Leviticus, Psalms, Jubilees and the Temple Scroll.

Descendants of Chinese Jews return to their roots.  Five young women from the ancient Chinese-Jewish community of Kaifeng underwent formal conversion in an emotional ceremony at the Jerusalem Rabbinical Court. The five made Aliyah in Feb 2016 via the nonprofit Shavei Israel, which supported them afterwards.
        
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