July 19, 2005

For all three of you that are still checking out my blog, here's a new posting.



April 28, 2005

It's a good thing Israel has only to make peace with its Palestinian neighbors and not European university professors.

The British Association of University Teachers has now created a blacklist against Jewish Israeli academics – really a blue-and-white list – reminiscent of the worst abuses of McCarthyism.

Things in the Middle East are moving forward while in the UK they are moving backwards. These boycotts have struck a blow at talks between Israel and Palestine.

The British lecturers' boycott endanger the progress now being made toward peace between the Israelis and Palestinians. It is not surprising therefore that even the Palestinian Al-Quds University in Jerusalem headed by Sari Nusseibeh released a statement against the British association blacklist, saying, "We are informed by the principle that we should seek to win Israelis over to our side, not to win against them... Therefore, informed by this national duty, we believe it is in our interest to build bridges, not walls; to reach out to the Israeli academic institutions, not to impose another restriction or dialogue-block on ourselves."

But instead of heeding the moderate words of those they claim to support, British university teachers will collectively punish Israeli academics in a manner that leading Palestinian academics do not support. They've become more Palestinian than the Palestinians, and at precisely the time when Israel is taking more risks and making more sacrifices for peace than it has since Camp David in 2000.

As Israel's Ambassador to the Court of St. James's Zvi Hefetz noted, "The last time that Jews were boycotted in universities was in 1930s Germany."

The message being sent by this anti-Semitic action – anti-Semitic because it will apply only to Israeli Jews, not Arabs or Christians – is that the Jewish state will not be rewarded for taking steps toward peace and ending the occupation. Instead it will be punished.

- Alan Dershowitz, Op-Ed JPost, 28-4-05

April 26, 2005

"The Economist" sees unemployment in Israel falling faster than expected

"Israel's economy is stable and strong, thanks to an inflow of foreign investment and rising exports."

Zeev Klein 26 Apr 05 14:57

Israel's economy is stable and strong, thanks to an inflow of foreign investment and rising exports, states "The Economist Intelligence Unit" (EIU) in its latest survey of the Israeli economy, published yesterday.
The EIU believes that prices in Israel and the balance of payments will remain stable, which will enable the Bank of Israel to preserve low inflation, within the government's inflation target of 1-3%. A small increase in the current accounts deficit is expected only in 2006, following surpluses in 2003-04, and no expected change in 2005.

The EIU adds that Israel's economic recovery will continue in 2006. Exports, investment, private consumption, and real wages will rise, as will government spending. On the other hand, the unemployment rate will fall faster than expected, and the government's budget deficit will fall to within the government target, excluding major expenses related to financing the disengagement plan.

April 21, 2005

Today in History

April 21, 2001:
The Falcons trade Tim Dwight, their first-round and third-round picks and a second-round choice in 2002 to San Diego for the number one pick, which they use to select Michael Vick

Good move

April 20, 2005


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Feeling a bit skeptical about the U.N. lately? Probably so. Well, in case your not, here's a little recap of all the "reform" thats been going on over there under the carefil watch of Kofi Annam...

From today's WSJ -

Yet more scandal at the United Nations? Secret deals, millions in bribes, leading to billions in global kickbacks? What to do?

Have no fear, reform is here. The United Nations has already put in place a sweeping set of improvements, with Secretary-General Kofi Annan reorganizing and streamlining the world body to bring about, according to a U.N. reform dossier, "a culture of greater openness, coherence, innovation and confidence." A blue-ribbon panel has "set more stringent standards for judging the performance of peacekeepers, in the field and at Headquarters." And there is now a system for dealing with U.N. staff, that "gives more precedence to merit and competence and less to tenure and precedent."

All of which sounds terrific. Except that the reforms cited above, heralding the new era of openness, coherence, competence, integrity and improved peacekeeping are all plucked from a U.N. dossier released almost three years ago, in June 2002. These reforms were shepherded through by Mr. Annan starting in the late 1990s.

Since the U.N.'s self-described dawn of integrity three years ago (one of several such sunrises since Mr. Annan became secretary-general in 1997), we have seen the sex-for-food scandal in the Congo, featuring the rape of minors by U.N. peacekeepers, which continued well after press disclosures last year prompted a U.N. internal investigation. We have seen theft at the World Meteorological Association, scandal in the U.N. audit department, the resignation over sexual harassment charges of the refugee high commissioner Ruud Lubbers, turmoil within the Electoral Assistance Division, and allegations of corruption involving the U.N.'s Geneva-based World Intellectual Property Organization. We have seen rebellion by the U.N. Staff Union against "senior management, and a raft of resignations by senior U.N. officials who nonetheless linger on the premises on official salaries of a dollar a year, plus the various perquisites and connections the place affords.

I won't even include the Kofi/Saddam "Oil for Food" scandal. If you want to delve into that, check out the rest of the article by Claudia Rossett.





April 04, 2005

Not that I've been writing much lately but at least now I have an excuse. I'm heading off to Turkey today so I probably wont be communicating with the blog for a while.

But first, I leave you with your monthly dose of Jewish Sports Trivia: Dusty Baker will be out of a job by Sept. 1, 2005


March 22, 2005

I wore it just for you, honey

So this morning as I'm sitting on the bus to J-lem, minding my own business, lost in my own world of listening to tunes on the headphones and soaking up the unusually warm weather and brilliantly clear blue skies, contemplating life while the beautiful Judean Hills roll by, my entire blissful experience was shattered by the arrival of a female passenger who selfishly couldn't find time for a decent shower, yet somehow managed to swim a few laps in her very own Olympic-sized bottle of perfume. Of course she chose to sit directly in front of me, and anybody who knows me is aware of the fact that I have an unusually strong olfactory system, and as such, will understand when I say that from the moment this women got within a half mile of the bus, nothing else mattered except for the overwhelming dominance of the lingering scent which emanated from every inch of her body.

The sense of smell is one of the seven senses of the human body, all of which are quite amazing. And while at times we may take these senses for granted, we seem to become acutely aware of them when things go awry. And this morning I was reminded of all the bad that can come from the incredible blessing of being endowed with these amazing, and also critical, sensory functions.

Just as passengers tend to be bothered by groups of hoodlums playing ear-shattering music from a three-story boombox, just as we tend to be acutely aware of the annoying little twirp screaming at his mother on the cellphone, just as most of us are understandably sensitive to the shared-seat partner rubbing his/her leg against your own, and almost as intrusive as being given a front-row seat to a teenage couple's championship tongue-wrestling match, I feel that thirty minutes exposure to someone else's pungent odor, whether it be leftover gas from Thursday nights casserole or a dousing in Calvin Klein's "Turniquet of Death", is simply too much for the sensory system to process at 7:30 in the morning.

Is it too much to ask of all those leaving the privacy of their own personal dwellings for a venture into the public domain to have a little consideration and refrain from forcing the entire world to be an active participant in their daily selection of stench?

Please, for the love of G-d, let me be.

March 21, 2005

Hit a bump in the road?

"Do what you can with what you have where you are."

- Theodore Roosevelt

March 16, 2005

Fact or Fiction?

The city of Eilat has the highest percentage of female taxi drivers in the world.

- Sheik Ibrahim

March 15, 2005

Can someone please explain to me the wisdom of setting up rushhour, roadblocking, traffic stopping, anti-disengagement protests in the middle of the busiest highway in Tel Aviv? Do these people really think they are gaining any goodwill or winning over the minds of the very same people whom they are preventing from getting home to see their husbands, wives, and kids after a long days work?

Do you really think this is going to win support for the already isolated messianic dreamers willing to kill their own children in Gaza?

Not quite as bad as the Holocaust badge, but still another desperate gaffe in calculations by a very stiffnecked group of people.

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