Israel News for July 8, 2016

Terror Attack
A 23 year old Israeli woman was driving on highway 90 between two Kibbutzim near the Kinneret when an Arab man hurled a large rock at her car, smashing her windshield and causing her to lose control and hit the side rail. The Arab then ran to her car, opened her door and tried to drag her out while yelling in Arabic.

The woman, Rotem Aharoni, from the village of Had Nes in the Golan, fought back and managed to push the attacker away. He then ran to another vehicle and unsuccessfully tried to open the door before fleeing.

About an hour later the Arab was seen running in the fields of nearby Kibbutz Degania Bet by a Kibbutz security officer. The officer shot him in the legs and neutralized him.

A preliminary police investigation has determined that the Arab man is a Jordanian citizen who is believed to have infiltrated into Israel and wanted to hijack a vehicle on Highway 90. The highway runs alongside the Jordanian border.

For further reading click here.

IDF Training
The IDF is planning to introduce a computerized training program designed to prevent post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in soldiers. The Israeli developed program will be used in advanced training of infantry troops.

According to research conducted on veterans of the 2014 Gaza War, the risk of combat troops developing PTSD in battle declined by 70 percent for soldiers who had been trained with the program compared to those who had not.

Training consists of four, 10-minute sessions over a month. Participants are asked to complete a fairly simple and technical computer task – striking a certain key whenever a certain symbol appears on the computer screen. However, while that task is under way, the subject is also shown various figures on the screen, some threatening and some neutral. According to the researchers, these figures may have angry faces or words might appear such as “wounded” or “explosions,” which are associated with PTSD.

Researchers say the training sessions change the way the brain processes traumatic events in the battlefield and thus has a major impact on the development of PTSD.

The US Army, which helped fund the project, is also testing the program.

For further reading click here.

Flight Wreckage
Pieces of wreckage thought to be from Egypt Air 804, that mysteriously crashed into the Mediterranean in May killing all 66 people on board, were found along the coast of Netanya yesterday.

According to data recovered from a cockpit voice recorder, the pilots tried to extinguish a fire in the plane. While Egyptian investigators have not found evidence linking the cause of the fire to terrorism, they are leaning towards that possibility since large fires suddenly breaking out on planes is rare.

For further reading click here.

Yemenite Report
In 2001 a report was release by the Kedmi Committee, which investigated the disappearance of the children of Yemenite immigrants between 1948 and 1954. Now the report has been made public and posted on the National Library website.

Between 1949 and 1950, Israel airlifted 50,000 Yemenite Jews to Israel in an operation called Magic Carpet. Most of them were initially housed in tent camps called Ma’abarot. Illness was rampant. Children were hospitalized without informing their parents or without any documentation or identification. Many died and were buried without their parents being informed until after the fact.

Accusations have been made that hundreds of Yemenite children were given up for adoption to childless Israeli couples by camp officials, while their parents were told that their children had died in hospital. When parents asked to see the bodies of their children they were either told that the bodies were already buried or were simply shown the bodies of other children, which were clearly not those of their children.

While the committee, headed by Judge Jacob Kedmi, did not find a factual basis to verify the systematic and organized kidnapping of the children, it did document several cases where children were given up for adoption without the parents’ knowledge or consent. The committee also described how many children were buried without the notification of their parents and “the ease with which infants were hospitalized without supervision, documentation and at times without allowing family members to visit.”

One case cited by the report says, “A mother who had made aliyah while eight months pregnant, who gave birth to her son in a tent for fear that he would be kidnapped. At the request of the father, the boy, named Yair, was brought to the nursery at camp to be circumcised, where he disappeared. The parents were told that he had died, and when they insisted on being shown the body, they were presented with the body of a 16-year-old. They never got to see their son’s body.”

The issue of the disappearance of Yemenite children is still an open wound for the Yemenite and Mizrahi community in Israel. It reinforces the perception of discrimination against Mizrahim by the Ashkenazic so called “elite”, who were pretty much in control of the state until recent years. Many would claim that they still are in control and that the discrimination continues, albeit not as blatantly.

To read the report click here.

New Railway
As part of the project to construct an electrified railway line between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv (24 miles), Israeli Railways will also link Modiin to the route, reducing travel time between Modiin and Jerusalem to just 17 minutes. Travel between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, set to begin in less than 2 years, will be less than 30 minutes. Much better than sitting in traffic for an hour and a half during rush hour.

Does that mean Modiin housing prices are going up even more? It that even possible?? [An attached house in Modiin currently goes for close to a million bucks. And you thought the 5 Towns was expensive?]

For further reading click here.