News Highlights July 2013
1. The Second 100 years
2. The Israelis.
3. Israeli Cities.
4. Israeli Kibbutzim.
5. PA Officials visit the Knesset.
6. Less money available for food.
7. YALA peace movement.
8. Israel, Greece, Cyprus sign new energy MOU.
9. Cut red tape to stop brain drain.
10. Music – Eilat Jazz Festival.
11. Barcelona FC promotes peace.
The total kibbutz population of about 143,000 is the highest in its 102-year history. More people are now joining kibbutzim than leaving and the addition of working-age adults and young children is helping to redress the balance of an ageing population.
Most kibbutzim have implemented reforms so as to become commercially viable. Privatization with differential incomes and home ownership has increased the attractiveness to newcomers reluctant to commit to pure communal principles.
Increasing numbers of families are attracted to kibbutz living by the quality of education, environment, space and security. The kibbutz enterprises also provide thousands of job opportunities.
The District Planning and Building Committee in the Haifa and northern area approved a plan to rebuild Kibbutz Beit Oren. The plan includes 371 new housing units to replace those burned during the Carmel fires. According to the Carmel Coast Regional Council, housing units will be used by kibbutz residents whose homes were burned.
Back in 1952 Ben Gurion asked a dairy worker to get permission from his kibbutz to take up the position of Deputy Director General of the Ministry of Defense. The dairy worker was just 29 years old but Ben Gurion believed that he was important for the country. The worker approached his kibbutz and a vote was held at a general meeting whether or not to allow a kibbutz member to work outside the kibbutz. That was the way the kibbutzim operated in those days. The members of Alumot voted in favor and the dairy worker, Shimon Peres, was granted leave to serve the country as Deputy Director General of Defense. Shimon Peres was instrumental in building Israel's Defense industry including its nuclear capacity. He also served in numerous ministerial posts including that of Prime Minister. He is of course Israel's current President.
The kibbutzim formed the backbone of the country before Israel gained independence in 1948 and during the first few years after independence. There was an established infrastructure in place because of the kibbutzim and many notable persons from kibbutzim took part in the political and defense organizations as the new state came into being. The kibbutzim were also the bread basket of Israel providing a large percentage of the country's food needs. Kibbutz enterprises diversified over the years and now cover almost every type of business and account for about 8% of Israel's economy.
The Israelis – Ahmed Tibi
Ahmed Tibi, is an Arab-Israeli politician and leader of the Arab Movement for Renewal. He currently serves as Deputy Speaker of theIsraeli Parliament the Knesset. Tibi is also a trained physician and graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.He began an internshipas a physician at Hadassah Hospital in 1984, and met PLO leaderYasser Arafat in Tunis that same year.
Tibi served as a political advisor to Palestinian Authority PresidentYasser Arafat for several years Tibi described his relationship with Arafat as "close" and "extremely interesting and important to him." Tibi later visited Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and urged him to hold firm in refusing to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
In the 18th Israeli Parliament session Tibi initiated a law, passed in 2012, regularizing compensation given by airlines to their customers for delayed or cancelled flights.
Israeli Cities - Caesarea
In 90 BCE, Alexander Jannaeus captured Straton's Tower as part of his policy of developing the shipbuilding industry and enlarging the Hasmonean kingdom. Straton's Tower remained a Jewish city for two generations, until the area became dominated by the Romans in 63 BCE, when the Romans declared it an autonomous city. The pagan city underwent vast changes under Herod the Great, who renamed it Caesarea in honor of the Roman emperor, Caesar Augustus.
In 22 BCE, Herod began construction of a deep sea harbor and built storerooms, markets, wide roads, baths, temples to Rome and Augustus, and imposing public buildings. Every five years the city hosted major sports competitions, gladiator games, and theatrical productions in its theatre overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
Today, the Chairman of the Caesarea Foundation and the CDC is Baron Benjamin de Rothschild, the great grandson of the Baron Edmond de Rothschild. Caesarea remains today the only locality in Israel managed by a private organization rather than a municipal government. As well as carrying out municipal services, the Caesarea Development Corporation markets plots for real-estate development, manages the nearby industrial park, and runs the Caesarea's golf course and country club, Israel's only 18-hole golf course.
Minister Energy and Water Resources Silvan Shalom signed in Nicosia a tripartite energy memorandum of understanding with Cypriot Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment Nicos Kouyialis and Greek Minister for the Environment, Energy and Climate Change George Lakkotrypis.
Shalom's aides called the memorandum "historic", and that it had far-reaching importance for the Israeli energy market, providing the three countries with energy security in the coming years. The memorandum includes a joint declaration of intent to implement within three years a Euro-Asiatic to lay an electric cable to link Israel and Cyprus's grids. The conduit will continue on to Crete, which will make it possible to supply electricity to European countries.
Shalom's aides said that this would help solve southern Italy's severe electricity shortage. "The tripartite agreement was reached after many discussions, and demonstrates the strong and tightening relations between the countries," said Shalom in Nicosia. "The electric conduit can easily become a cable which will supply and export electricity to the European energy market, and provide us with energy security."
The memorandum also states that the countries will cooperate to protect regionally important infrastructures in the Mediterranean where natural gas fields are located.
The memorandum also covers water issues. Kouyialis said Cyprus and Israel have established a successful cooperation in desalination “as in three of our four permanent desalination plants, Israeli companies were involved." He added, “A new era of cooperation starts today in the field of sewage treatment and waste water reuse that will help Cyprus improve its water balance, as substantial and constant quantities of recycled water will be utilized in the best possible way”.
On this point, Shalom said, "Israel would like to give any help needed. We are very happy that an Israeli company is involved here." On water security, he said, “We believe that it is necessary these days, even though Cyprus is not facing the same threats that Israel is facing from terrorists."
Cut red tape to fight brain drain
Economy and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett
promised a group of 20 Russian-speaking entrepreneurs to cut red tape in order
to stem emigration of talented Israelis.
The 39-year-old New Orleansborn trumpeter and
keyboard player Nicholas Payton will perform at this year’s Red Sea Jazz
Festival in Eilat on August 18 and 20, is one of several exponents of what most
people call “jazz,” but who object to the four-letter word as being of a
denigrating nature. In a blog which he posted in December 2011, Payton wrote:
”’Jazz’ is an oppressive, colonialist slave term and I want no part of it.”
Barcelona FC promotes peace
Spanish champions Barcelona, including Leo
Messi and new signing Neymar, arrived in Israel for what it has branded as the
Peace Tour in the Middle East.
A clinic will also be held in Tel Aviv.