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Did You Know?

Israel engineers are behind the development of the largest communications router in the world, launched by Cisco.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Business blooming for Louis Vuitton in Tel Aviv

 Louis Vuitton store (archives)  Ivy Lerer
Louis Vuitton store (archives) Ivy Lerer

Located in Ramat Aviv Mall, it seems making aliyah was a good call for luxury brand

The upscale Ramat Aviv mall in Tel Aviv is known as the most expensive mall in Israel, and the 35th priciest in the entire world. Rent prices are also reportedly some of the highest that retail shops will pay in Israel.
It should come to no shock, then, that when high-end fashion conglomerate Louis Vuitton announced the opening of its flagship store in Israel, they chose that particular mall to be their home
The Luis Vuitton flagship Tel Aviv store opened last month at the Ramat Aviv Mall, located on 40 Einstein Street, and has since offered its pricy luxury goods to Israeli residents looking for the finest fashions available.
It maintains the brand’s “luxury” price tags too, with signature handbags running up to as much as $3,000, and LV wallets at approximately $1,330.
The store is open Sunday to Friday, as well as on Saturdays after Shabbat comes to an end.

Jerusalem Food Truck

Click To View Video - Jerusalem Food Truck

Food trucks take to the city's streets in hope of enticing residents to try authentic ethnic cuisine.

Ethnic restaurants abound in Israel's capital city, but a new project aims to bring their authentic and varied cuisines to the people -- via food trucks.

"It's never been done in Jerusalem," says Assaf Granit, chef-owner of Machneyuda Restaurant. "Every day we're meeting at different locations cooking a different dish. We're super excited to get our food out to the people."

As you'll see in this video, both residents and tourists are loving it. "Some authentic food," says one visitor. "It's different from any kind of restaurant you get in Texas, for sure!"

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Israel Puts Focus on Latin American Trade

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is working to improve economic ties with politically friendly Latin American countries in order to compensate for the crippled economy of Israel’s main trading continent, Europe.

The new effort to increase Latin American trading, particularly with Chile, Peru, Colombia and Mexico, will compliment Netanyahu’s simultaneous effort to increase economic ties with China and other East Asian countries. These four Latin American countries formed the free-trade Pacific Alliance last year and account for about 36 percent of the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP). They all trade significantly with North America.
Currently in Latin America, Brazil is Israel’s main trading partner, taking in Israeli exports at about $1.1 billion per year and importing to Israel at about $400 million per year. In June, Israeli President Shimon Peres signed a free-trade agreement with Colombia.

IDF Appoints First 100-Year-Old Major General

Click To View Video - IDF Appoints First 100-Year-Old Major General

Yitzhak Pundak, who served as a senior officer and who fought in the 1948 War of Independence, is the first person to receive the rank of Major General after having finished active service in the IDF.

Israel’s monument to gays persecuted by Nazis planned for Tel Aviv

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The monument, to be erected in Tel Aviv’s Meir Park, will have a symbolic pink triangle, the badge used by the Nazis to mark homosexuals.

Israel’s first monument to homosexuals persecuted by the Nazis will be erected in central Tel Aviv’s Meir Park (Gan Meir) later this year, near the headquarters of the Gay Center.
At the center of the monument will be a concrete triangle containing a pink triangle, the symbol used by the Nazis used to mark homosexuals. A bench and plaque beside the monument will give information about the persecution of homosexuals during the Holocaust.
The monument, costing NIS 150,000, was the idea of attorney Eran Lev, a member of the municipal council from the Meretz party. He began working on the project after receiving support from Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai. Landscape architect Professor Yael Moriah, who was responsible for the park’s renovation over the past years, was put in charge of the planning.
“This will be the first and only memorial site in Israel to mention the victims of the Nazis who were persecuted for anything other than being Jewish,” Lev told Haaretz. “As a cosmopolitan city and an international gay center, Tel Aviv will offer a memorial site that is universal in its essence. As far as I’m concerned, it’s not a monument, but a place — a place of quiet that will invite visitors to sit, contemplate, reflect and be in solitude.”
The erection of the monument is highly significant for Lev. “One of the first restrictions the Nazis imposed on the Jews was against going to public parks. We’re bringing that memory back into the public space. It’s very moving,” he says. “We felt it was important to present it as part of the park. It’s close to the Gay Center, but not inside it. It’s a public Israeli monument, erected by the municipality, and not something that belongs only to the gay community,” he said.
Memorials to the gay victims of Nazi persecution exist in Berlin, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Sydney and San Francisco. Most of them contain the triangle. The planners of the monument in Tel Aviv encountered many obstacles similar to the ones faced by the planners of the monument in Berlin in 2008. At the top of the list was the fact that, at least officially, the Nazis persecuted only gay men, and not lesbians, as homosexuals. But as Professor Moshe Zimmermann, a Hebrew University historian, pointed out, “The persecution of lesbians was often concealed using other pretexts. Lesbians were persecuted as ‘asocials,’ a group that included unemployed people and alcoholics.”
About 50,000 homosexuals were convicted under the notorious Paragraph 175 of the Nazi penal code, which banned homosexual relations between men and between 7,000 and 10,000 were murdered in the camps. “The numbers aren’t ‘official,’ unlike those for Jews and Gypsies, but the deportation of 15,000 people to the concentration camps for homosexuality was a deliberate act of persecution. It was not incidental or trivial,” Zimmermann said.
“The persecution of lesbians was not nearly as widespread as that of homosexual men, which the Nazis perceived to be the main problem,” Zimmermann says. “Still, the great advantage of the monument being built is the ability to reflect on discrimination in its broadest form and not make it subordinate to the definitions of the Third Reich.” The inscription on the monument will explain the difference between the persecution of gay men and lesbians during the Holocaust, but will commemorate them in a single place. According to Zimmermann, this is being done to emphasize that “the biggest problem is discrimination and its social and political consequences.”
Another issue that was debated was how to refer to the victims. For example, the Nazis used the word “homosexual,” while the gay community prefers to use the word “gay” today. The Nazis never referred to the various groups within the community, such as transgender people or bisexuals, who are recognized as part of the gay community. “We had to find a balance between two opposing interests,” said Lev. “On the one hand, we had to make sure the monument spoke to all parts of the community. On the other, we didn’t want to create a situation of historical anachronism by using terms that weren’t appropriate to the period.”
The compromise was the following sentence, which will be inscribed on the memorial: “To the memory of those persecuted by the Nazi regime for their sexual preference and gender identity.”
Although the monument is a universal one that does not distinguish between Jewish and non-Jewish victims of the Nazi regime, it will also contain a reference to Jewish gays, including the names of two well-known gay Jewish men. The first, Magnus Hirschfeld, was a prominent physician, sexologist and advocate for sexual minorities whose institute was burned down by the Nazis. The second was Gerhard (Gad) Beck, who was known as the last gay Holocaust survivor until his death last year at the age of 88. “This is the story of a Jew who was persecuted not only for his Jewishness but also because he was a homosexual. These are the sorts of names that should be mentioned to anyone who comes to Gan Meir looking for a source of identity,” Zimmermann said.
The only homosexuals who will not be mentioned on the new memorial are those who were members of the Nazi party. One of the best-known of them was Ernst Roehm, the commander of the SA (also known as the Brownshirts), who was murdered during the Night of the Long Knives. “The Nazi elite was full of people who lived with mistresses and with homosexual people,” Zimmermann says. But they did not flaunt their behavior. “From the moment people like Roehm undermined Hitler’s power, he could make the classic German bourgeois accusation that homosexuals were a danger to society, even though there continued to be homosexuals in the system.”
The monument’s planners hope that it will not become a target for hostile elements. “It was clear to us that we would install it near the Gay Center because we feel it’s important that it be guarded all the time,” Lev said. Zimmermann said: “I hope that it will be received with understanding and not become a focus of strife between people.”

Ethio-Israel: NEW Music video by Bilusa, Surafel, Addi “mitta”

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New music video by Ethipian-Israel artists Bilusa, Surafel and Addi “Mitta”

Israeli among top 35 innovators under 35


At 26, Kira Radinsky, Ph.D., is on list of world’s 35 brightest young innovators. Others on list? Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Google founders Larry Page, Sergey Brin

Dr. Kira Radinsky, 26, completed her Ph.D. this year at the Technion, and has already been selected from among hundreds of candidates and placed on the list of the world’s Top 35 Innovators Under 35 for “being an exceptional inventor and for her leading work in the area of programming.”
The list is put together by the MIT Technology Review.
Dr. Radinsky, who lives in Zichron Yaakov and is married, served in the IDF’s intelligence corps, and even signed on for an extra year. She began studying at the Technion at the age of 15, joined its exceptional students program, and completed three degrees in Computer Sciences under Professor Shaul Markovitch.
During her studies, she created a new method of prognostication, which could predict events with an average accuracy of 80%, by scanning literature from the past 500 years, including all
material published by The New York Times since 1880 onward, in an attempt to find correlations between different types of events.
Among other things, Dr. Radnisky learned that floods taking place closely following a drought were a preliminary sign of an outbreak of cholera. Today she is involved in an organization that is active against genocide, as well as with medical organizations, in order to implement lessons learned from her research. Research carried out by Dr. Radinsky has earned her awards and recognition from several organizations and bodies, among them Google, Yahoo and Facebook.
“Over the years, we have succeeded in selecting men and women whose innovations, and the companies they established, deeply influenced different fields and humanity,” explained Jason Pontin, the editor-in-chief and publisher of the MIT Technology Review. “Among past winners are Larry Page and Sergey Brin, founders of Google; Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook; Jonathan Ive, head designer of Apple; and David Karp, who established Tumblr. We are proud of our finalists and their accomplishments, and proud to add Kira to this respected list.”
“It is a big honor to be included in the MIT list of the young innovators. This is one of the most prestigious prizes that someone my age can receive,” Radinsky said Thursday. “I really hope my win will encourage other young people to go into research, and that they will chose to do things that will influence all of our lives.”

Rosh Hashanah New Year Experiment from Technion ‘Dipping the Apple in Honey’

Apple Honey

Aiming Higher, a Rosh Hashanah New Year’s experiment. How we dip the apple in honey at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology.

Israeli study finds cellphone-cancer correlation

Source: WesternGazette
Source: WesternGazette

Research conducted by Tel Aviv University establishes connection between long-term use of mobile phones, effects that lead to molecular changes

It seems like at some point every cellphone user has joked that cellphones are carcinogenic, and that they potentially cause cancer. A recent study has found that this may not be a joke after all.
The study was conducted by Tel Aviv University, with the results being published in the scientific journal Antioxidants and Redox Signalling.
The study does not present a direct connection between cancer development and cellphones use. Rather, it creates the potential for new research, and establishes a connection between long-term use and the effects that lead to molecular changes.
The study looked at the salivary glands of 20 long-term cellphone users, using a mean of 12 years of 30 hours per week use, contrasted with 20 deaf subjects who used their phones only for text messages. The researchers believed that, due to the phone’s proximity to one’s salivary glands, the effects of the phones could be seen by looking at the user’s saliva.
Compared to non-users, the saliva of those who used cellphones had a higher level of oxidative stress, a process which is known to be a major cancerous risk factor.
The researchers found that there was “a significant increase in all salivary oxidative stress indices studied in mobile phone users,” leading to the conclusion that “use of mobile phones may cause oxidative stress and modify salivary function.”
Dr. Yaniv Hamzany of TAU went on to say that the study suggests a “considerable oxidative stress on the tissue and glands which are close to the cell phone when in use.”
Cellphones are known to emit non-ionizing radiation, but not for modifying cells in the body. In 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, part of the World Health Organization, announced cellphones to be “possibly carcinogenic,” classifying them as Category 2B, a classification shared by engine exhaust, lead, industrial chemicals, and DDT.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

PM Netanyahu meets with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

Click To View Video - PM Netanyahu meets with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

Prime Minister Netanyahu meets with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
ראש הממשלה בנימין נתניהו נפגש עם מזכ"ל האו"ם באן קי-מון

צילום: לע"מ, רועי אברהם

סאונד: לע"מ, איתמר בוטון

Apple acquires second screen TV startup

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Apple’s latest acquisition is the recently-shut down second-screen TV/video app, according to a source with knowledge of the deal who asked to remain anonymous. was an iOS app that provided a comprehensive overview of everything that’s available to watch via cable TV providers (Comcast), streaming video services (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime), and digital video stores (iTunes, Amazon). Additionally, you could manage what you watched from a universal queue, get video recommendations, and connect with social networks to see what your friends were watching/liking.
However, the service shut down back in May with little explanation. CEO Guy Piekarz previously told TechCrunch that the service wasn’t gone for good, but instead would be working on a new direction.
Apple responded to VentureBeat with the following comment: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.” (It’s virtually the same comment the company provides when asked about all its recent acquisitions.) Piekarz declined to comment to VentureBeat.
As for the deal, Apple is said to have purchased for an estimated $1 to $1.5 million, according to VentureBeat’s source. Yet, the final amount could have been much higher, considering that was seeing regular growth and was routinely ranked among the top 15 entertainment apps listed in Apple’s App Store. Another source tells VentureBeat that the purchase price is definitely incorrect, but couldn’t comment further.
So why The company doesn’t have any valuable patents or a large user base. What it does have is a very nice service that maps out all the available content both online and on your TV. And while Apple hasn’t been very specific about its plans to revolutionize the TV industry (besides acknowledging that such plans exist), buying this service could suggest’s technology is in line with those future TV plans.

US FDA Approves Use of Latest Israeli Invented PillCam to Monitor Crohn’s Disease


Sufferers of Crohn’s and other diseases, including obscure gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding and iron deficiency anemia, will benefit from the US Food and Drug Administration’s 510(k) clearance Tuesday of the next generation PillCam, SB 3, created by Israeli capsule endoscopy developer Given Imaging, which is listed on the Tel Aviv and Nasdaq stock exchanges. The new cameras will be marketed in the US starting in the fourth quarter of this year.

In a statement, Given Imaging president and CEO Homi Shamir said, “With more than 2 million procedures conducted since the first generation of the product was introduced, PillCam SB has had a significant impact on patient care in the US and across the globe. We believe PillCam SB 3 will both enhance the clinical experience for our large base of existing US customers and expand the market for this product among new physicians who have not been performing PillCam procedures.”
On the company’s website, Given Imaging notes that 75% of Crohn’s patients have lesions in their small bowel that can be better assessed using its camera technology. In findings, within three months of using the PillCam doctors changed the treatment for 62% of patients and 40% were prescribed new medication.
The new system offers a 30% greater image resolution that delivers more detailed small bowel images and coverage, Given Imaging said.

IDF Honor Guard For Gen. Martin E. Dempsey

Click To View Video - IDF Honor Guard For Gen. Martin E. Dempsey

Gen. Martin E. Dempsey met with IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz and senior security personnel in his third visit to Israel as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States.

Business alliances between Israel and Quintana Roo, Mexico


The president of the Chamber of Commerce Mexico-Israel, Mr. Fabian Yañez Carbajo, recently informed amid the “5th National Summit of Commercial Areas” that the Israeli city Tel Aviv is very much interested on establishing commercial and business alliances with a city or county in the state of Quintana Roo.

Hebrew U ranked top in Israel, 59th in the world

Hebrew University

The Technion – Israel Institute of Technology is ranked 77th this year and the Weizmann Institute of Science is 92nd worldwide.

Hebrew University is ranked first in Israel and 59th globally, according to the 2013 Academic Ranking of World Universities released Thursday.
ARWU ranks the world’s top 500 universities, placing Hebrew University in the top three in Asia and 11th among universities where English is not the primary language.
Hebrew University is also 17th in number of alumni who have Nobel Prizes or Fields Medals and 39th in the number of faculty who won the awards.
Since ARWU started publishing annual rankings in 2003, Hebrew University has been Israel’s top university and among the world’s top 100.
The Technion – Israel Institute of Technology is ranked 77th this year and the Weizmann Institute of Science is 92nd worldwide. Tel Aviv University is among the 101-150 best, Bar Ilan University and Ben-Gurion University are in the 301-400 best and University of Haifa is among the 401-500 best.
“I’m proud to see the prominent positions of Israeli research universities in these important international rankings, and I’m pleased that once again Hebrew University has been recognized as Israel’s leading university,” Hebrew University President Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson stated. “The fact that the Hebrew University continues to achieve such high rankings is a testament to the hard work of our faculty and the university community and their continuing quest for uncompromising academic and research excellence.”
The top-ranked universities are Harvard University, Stanford University, University of California – Berkeley, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and University of Cambridge.

The Holyland Hash House Harriers

Click To View Video - Holyland Hash House Harriers

Join revelers in Tel Aviv for an International social fun run and beer-drinking event. 'It was the silliest run I ever did,' says one enthusiast.

"Hashing" has been around since before Israel became a sovereign state. But the Hash House Harriers -- an international group of non-competitive weekend running clubs including about 550,000 members -- has an enthusiastic following in Tel Aviv.

The Holyland Hash House Harriers do a 5K run along a pre-set route laid out with flour markings, and any mistakes are "punished" with a beer.

Humor is another important "H" in the social phenomenon sometimes abbreviated as H3. Some of the participants like to dress in outlandish attire "and just act like fools," says one aficionado on this video.

"We have people who are really serious runners, and then there are people who are just fun runners or people who don't run at all. We have walkers, we have dogs, kids. It's really about social experience," says one Israeli H3 member.

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Israeli Soccer Players Shield Children From Pouring Rain as Ukrainian Opponents Show Indifference

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Israel’s national soccer team caused a stir in Ukraine Wednesday after showing up their host team for lacking in common decency, according to media reports.

As the national anthems were played prior to a friendly match in the country the Israelis shielded a group of children lined up in front of them on the field from the blistering cold and the rain, while the Ukrainian team appeared to be indifferent to the children, pictures show.
The young children joined the players for the singing of the anthems as is customary in international matches, but were caught in a torrential downpour that began soon after they arrived on the pitch.  The Israelis removed their training jackets and covered the children after one of the players noticed that one of the children was shivering Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot reported.
“I am glad we made the gesture and I hope that all the children returned home safely,” said Israeli soccer star Itay Shechter of the incident.
“When it began to rain during the anthems, we decided to take off our training jackets because we saw that the kids that were with us were freezing from the cold of the strong rain. We immediately decided to place the training jackets on the children so that they would feel a little more cozy and warmer,” another player Eitan Tibi added.
According to Yediot Ahronot the incident prompted media headlines in both Ukraine and Russia criticizing the Ukrainian team. ”The human reflex was to do what the Israeli players did,” wrote one newspaper according to Yediot.
Israel was defeated in the subsequent match against Ukraine, which took place in Kiev, by two goals to none.

Bar Paly - Israeli supermodel, but aren't all Israeli models SUPER?

Bar Paly (Hebrew: בר פאלי‎; born 29 April 1982) is an Israeli model and actress.

Paly was born in the Ural Mountains, Russia. She moved to Israel when she was seven, and was raised in Tel Aviv. Paly began a career in modeling at the age of 17. In 2003, she began her career as an actress appearing in a variety of roles for both film and television. Paly has appeared in TV’s How I Met Your Mother, The Starter Wife, and the 2008 horror film The Ruins.

In 2013, Paly held roles in both Roman Coppola’s A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III starring Charlie Sheen, Jason Schwartzman and Bill Murray, and Michael Bay’s Pain & Gain, alongside Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Muslim IDF Soldier Keeps Watch Over Israel's Gaza Border

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Watch our exclusive interview with Staff Sergeant Ahmed Inaim, a Bedouin soldier who guards Israel's sensitive Gaza border. Staff Sgt. Inaim's brother, who also served as an IDF soldier, was killed in combat several years ago. In 2006, Hamas terrorists injured another of his brothers when they attacked Israel and kidnapped Gilad Shalit.

Despite his family's sacrifices, Staff Sgt. Inaim remains determined to serve his country. Last week, he spoke with us as he patrolled the border at sunrise.

For more from the IDF:

Israeli show on gay couple goes global

Gay couple show

HOT TV series ‘Ima Ve’abaz,’ which tells story of two homosexual men who have child with straight woman, to be distributed in France; show’s production rights sold to British company

Israeli television series “Ima Ve’abaz” (“Mom and Dads”), which is broadcast by the HOT cable company, has been sold to France and Britain.
The show has been bought by French distribution company Double V and is expected to be aired in France and in French-speaking countries with simultaneous translation.
In Britain, the show’s production rights have been sold to Company Pictures, which produced British comedy-drama series “Shameless.” The deal was finalized by Hadas Mozes Lichtenstein, international business development manager at the ADD content agency.
The series, which was produced by Tedy Productions and aired in Israel in late 2012, was written by scriptwriter and journalist Avner Bernheimer. It tells the story of two homosexual men, played by Yehuda Levi and Yiftach Klein, who have a child with a straight single woman portrayed by Maya Dagan.
“‘Ima Ve’abas’ has the ability to sweep away a wide audience around the world, just like it swept away viewers and critics in Israel,” said Yoram Mokady, vice president for content at HOT. “The original and outstanding script along with an excellent production company abroad could work out great in the wide world as well.”
The Company Pictures production company said in a statement that the Israeli version of “Ima Ve’abaz” was filled with quality and originality. “We are very excited to work together with ADD, HOT and Avner Bernheimer in order to bring Avner’s wonderful and unique series to the British audience. We hope this is the beginning of a long and fruitful relationship.”
The Double V company said, “We are proud to distribute ‘Ima Ve’abaz’ in the French territories. We believe it is a high-quality series dealing with a modern issue which we all relate to as parents, children and members of a developing society.
“We were drawn to the series’ simple and human approach, and we expect it to be a great success.”

Israel: Small Country, Big Ideas

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Israel, Greece, Cyprus Reach ‘Historic’ Energy Cooperation Agreement


Israel’s Minister for Energy and Water Resources Silvan Shalom on Thursday signed a three-way agreement with Greece and Cyprus relating to interconnecting electricity grids, protecting natural gas deposits and desalinizing sea water, Israel’s Globe business daily reported.

Globes cited Shalom’s aides who said the memorandum of understanding among the three countries was “historic,” and that it would ensure shared energy security in the coming years.
The agreement was signed in Nicosia, Cyprus, with Greek Minister for the Environment, Energy and Climate Change George Lakkotrypis and Cypriot Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment Nicos Kouyialis. “The tripartite agreement was reached after many discussions, and demonstrates the strong and tightening relations between the countries,” said Shalom.
The agreement calls for the construction within three years of an electricity cable between Israel and Cyprus, with a conduit on Crete that would allow further interconnection to continental Europe.
The three countries will also cooperate to protect important infrastructure in the Mediterranean where natural gas fields are located.
On the issue of water, Cypriot Minister Kouyialis said, “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.” Israeli companies were involved in the construction of three of Cyprus’s four permanent desalination plants, he said.
“Israel would like to give any help needed. We are very happy that an Israeli company is involved here,” said Shalom. Regarding water security, he added, “We believe that it is necessary these days, even though Cyprus is not facing the same threats that Israel is facing from terrorists.”

AOL Is Acquiring Video Ad Platform For $405M

TechCrunch-owner AOL just announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire video advertising platform in a deal that should be worth a total of $405 million — $322 million in cash and $83 million in AOL common stock.

“AOL is a leader in online video and the combination of AOL and will create the leading video platform in the industry,” said AOL Chairman and CEO Tim Armstrong in the press release announcing the deal. (That’s Armstrong at the right of the photo with CEO Amir Ashkenazi.) “The founders and team are on a mission to make advertising as easy as e-commerce and the two companies together will aggressively pursue that vision.”
This tops the $315 million that AOL paid for the Huffington Post, making it the company’s largest acquisition since Armstrong became CEO in 2009. Business Insider reported in July that AOL had made an offer of about $400 million for the company. will operate as an independent part of AOL’s video organization, which is led by senior vice president Ran Harnevo, and which itself is part of the broader ad offerings at AOL Networks (where Bob Lord was recently hired as CEO). The deal is expected to close in the third quarter.
One of Armstrong’s big themes this year has been programmatic ad-buying, where ads are bought in an automated way — a couple of weeks ago he announced plans for a “programmatic upfront” event at Advertising Week. In the release, he says that is at the “forefront” of both the programmatic trend ad and the shift from traditional TV to online video. supported more than 26,000 ad campaigns that ran on 9,500 websites, AOL says.
The video ad company was founded in 2006 and has raised a total of $48.6 million in funding. Investors include Gemini Israel Funds, Redpoint Ventures, Spark Capital, and Bessemer Venture Partners.

Offer Nissim @ Montreal’s New City Gas

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Israel sends another gorgeous Bar to Hollywood

Bar Paly

In her breakthrough role, Bar Paly plays the femme fatale in ‘Pain and Gain,’ which also stars Mark Wahlberg.

Dizengoff Square in the heart of Tel Aviv received a heaping dose of Hollywood glam when a wide red carpet was put down and posters featuring the sweating muscles of Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson were displayed as part of the Israeli premiere of “Pain and Gain.”
The cameras and flashes were all turned on a beautiful blonde – tan, tall and very thin – wearing a clingy dress in deep beige and a satisfied smile. Bar Paly, the Israeli model-turned-actress, with her back to a huge photo featuring her likeness, was there for the recent premiere of “Pain and Gain,” which opens in Israeli cinemas on Thursday, and in which she plays the female lead, Paly’s first significant role on the big screen.
“Pain and Gain” is the latest movie by Michael Bay, the producer and director behind mega box office hits such as “Transformers,” “Armageddon” and “Bad Boys,” and one of the most powerful people in Hollywood. The dark comedy, being distributed here by the Globus Group and coming out this week on Blue Ray in the United States, is based on a real-life story about steroid-crazed bodybuilders in Miami who, in the 1990s, kidnapped a Jewish businessman in order to seize control of his assets. In this frenetic, violent film, Paly plays the femme fatale Sorina Luminita, an East European stripper recruited by the gang that’s determined to pursue the American dream in a particularly unpleasant way.
Eight years ago, Paly left Tel Aviv to try to break into the movies in Hollywood. After a long waiting period, she is now having her big breakthrough. This past year has been especially eventful: Besides playing the female lead in “Pain and Gain,” she filmed two other movies, “Non-Stop” and “Million Dollar Arm,” playing alongside actors such as John Hamm, Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore. She continues to represent Oliver Peoples luxury eyeglasses together with actor Ray Liotta, and has also become well-known in men’s magazines, which include her on their lists of the world’s most beautiful women.
She joins the company of other Israeli women who have in recent years done well in Hollywood, such as Ayelet Zurer (“Angels and Demons,” “Man of Steel”), Gal Gadot (“Fast and Furious”) and Moran Atias (“Third Person”), who all seem to have alluring good looks and feminine strength in common.
“I think the attraction to Israeli women stems from the fact that we’re exotic and the fact that there are many talented and beautiful women in Israel,” says Paly, in Hebrew, on the phone, which she answers in a high-pitched, somewhat childlike voice, and an accent combining an Israeli foundation layered with Russian inflections and some American grace notes. “I think that there is also greater awareness of Israel than before in the movie industry.”
She is speaking from her parents’ place in Tel Aviv, where she grew up as an only child. “My parents have always given me whatever I wanted,” she exclaims. “Took me to the ballet, the opera, museum exhibitions. I was always surrounded by art. It’s their fault I’ve become an actress.”
Bar was born Barbara in Russia, and moved to Israel with her parents when she was seven. When asked where she was born, she’ll only say that she comes from the Ural Mountains – a 2,500-kilometer-long mountain range – and burnishes her aura of exotic mystery a little more.
In the roles Paly has played to date she has succeeded in creating comic characters that combine her obvious beauty with an appealing sort of clumsiness. She says she has never tried to project any sort of identifying image or brand. “I just like doing comedies, and think that my timing and love for the genre set me apart from other young women who look like me. The actresses I most admire are Cameron Diaz and Sofia Vergara. They’re amazing comedic actresses and also gorgeous. That’s the direction I’d like my career to go in.”

Music festival at Tel Aviv Museum of Art

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Top international personalities in the visual and theatrical arts give performances at the award-winning museum each spring.

The Felicja Blumental International Music Festival ( at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art offers a weeklong celebration of chamber, orchestral, folk and vocal performances.

The event spotlights Israeli and international visual arts, film and theater against the backdrop of the museum, whose 2011 Paul and Herta Amir Building ( won Travel & Leisure magazine's Best Museum award.

Performers at the annual festival are the cream of the crop in their respective fields such as Hollywood actor John Malkovich, who performed in "The Infernal Comedy" at the 15th annual festival in 2013.

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Tel Aviv No. 2 city for tech startups

Boston Globe names Israeli metropolis as second best city for startup entrepreneurs after Silicon Valley, with highest density of tech startups in the world

The Boston Globe, one of the most important newspapers in the United States, has named Tel Aviv the world’s second best city for tech startups, after Silicon Valley in California.
Startup Genome, a resource for tracking and building startups, formed a list of the world’s leading high-tech cities for startup entrepreneurs. Tel Aviv precedes New York, which only made it to the fifth place, Los Angeles (3) and London (7).
Eight factors were tracked to determine the ranking: Total activity of entrepreneurship in the region, amount of active and comprehensive risk capital, total performance and performance potential, how many risks founders took, ability to adopt new technologies, quality of support network, talent and differences between Silicon Valley.
Tel Aviv was said to have the highest density of tech startups in the world. In 2009, there were 63 Israeli companies listed on the NASDAQ, more than Europe, Japan, Korea, India, and China combined.
Yet despite their relative success, Tel Aviv’s startups are below average in terms of adopting new technologies, like programming languages. Startup Genome expects the city to become a niche or regional hub, not a global powerhouse like Silicon Valley.

Monday, August 5, 2013

IDF Paratroopers Take the Biggest Jump of Their Lives

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IDF Paratroopers finished a week of exercises and now get to put it to good use. Watch how they prepare to parachute!

Imagine standing at the door of a plane, thousands of feet in the air, and preparing yourself to jump out. That's what soldiers from the Paratrooper's Brigade went through this week during a parachuting exercise in the south of Israel.

Col. Toledano addresses the Paratroopers

Paratrooper smiling

Paratroopers preparing to go up

Hareidi MK Speaks Arabic, Tibi Answers in Yiddish

MKs Tibi, Gafni laugh in Knesset Israel news photo: Flash 90
MKs Tibi, Gafni laugh in Knesset
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Amusement in Knesset as hareidi MK addresses Arab MKs in Arabic, Arab MK responds in Yiddish.

There were some amusing moments in Knesset on Wednesday night despite the tension as MKs stayed late to debate the controversial Governance Bill.
Both the hareidi-religious Yahadut Hatorah (Gimmel) faction and the majority-Arab parties Balad, Hadash and Ra’am Ta’al strongly opposed the bill, which would make it harder for small factions to enter Knesset.
During his speech against the bill, hareidi-religious MK Yisrael Eichler turned to his Arab colleagues and expressed his support for their struggle against the bill – in Arabic. “Nahu maakum b’nidalkum min ajlal demokratia,” he told them.
His use of Arabic was met by shouts of support and laughter from the Arab MKs.
MK Ahmed Tibi of Ra’am Ta’al later took the opportunity to repay MK Eichler in kind.
“I must thank the Member of Knesset from Yahadut Hatorah, and also the Meretz members, and some of the Labor team, who expressed solidarity with our fear of the existential threat to us from the high vote threshold set by Yisrael Beyteinu and Yesh Atid,” he began.
“My colleague MK Eichler did well in taking the unusual step of addressing us in Arabic,” he continued. Addressing Eichler, he said, “You surprised us all – you surprised us all in a good way – and you said in Arabic that you support the Arabs in their fight for democracy.”
“I want to thank you, Member of Knesset Eichler, when I say ‘Mir de araba’ b’dankin eich of de tmiha eigen demokratia,” he said – telling Eichler “In the name of the Arabs, I thank you for your support for democracy” in Yiddish.
Tibi’s “thank you” was met with a wave of laughter in the Knesset hall.

Stoudemire seeking Israeli citizenship


Amar’e Stoudemire, the New York Knicks star who claims Hebrew roots and is currently touring Israel, is seeking Israeli citizenship.

Stoudemire’s agent, Happy Walters, told New York magazine that the Knicks’ power forward is in the process of becoming an Israeli.
“He’s getting citizenship,” Walters said. ”He applied, and he’s there now.”
Stoudemire went to Israel for the Maccabiah Games as the assistant coach of the Canadian basketball squad. The games ended earlier this week.
Stoudemire’s Jewish connections have been the source of much media fascination in recent months. At his wedding last year to Alexis Welch, Stoudemire donned a yarmulke and prayer shawl for the “Hebraic” ceremony. In July, he announced he had become a part owner in the Israeli basketball club Hapoel Jerusalem. And in an exclusive interview in Jerusalem last month with JTA, Stoudemire said he is in regular dialogue with New York rabbis, studies Torah and observes the High Holidays.
“I’m not a religious person, I’m more of a spiritual person, so I follow the rules of the Bible that coordinate with and connect with the Hebrew culture,” Stoudemire told JTA

Wal-Mart pushes SodaStream profit up

Screen Shot 2013-08-04 at 7.13.16 PM

Israel-based manufacturer of beverage carbonation systems says its second second-quarter net income jumped 36%, boosted by strong demand fueled by its launch at US retail chain

SodaStream International Ltd. says its second-quarter net income jumped 36%, boosted by strong demand fueled by its launch at Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
The company raised its revenue and profit outlook, pushing shares higher in morning trading.
SodaStream makes beverage carbonation systems that enable consumers to easily transform tap water into carbonated soft drinks and sparkling water.
The Israel-based company said that net income was $12.8 million, or 60 cents per share, for the three-month period ended June 30. That compares with $9.4 million, or 45 cents per share, in the year-ago period.
Adjusted to exclude stock-based compensation expense, quarterly earnings per share were 74 cents. Revenue rose 26% to $132.4 million from $103 million.
Analysts, on average, expected a profit of 67 cents per share on $129.6 million in revenue, according to a FactSet poll.
SodaStream said its sales of soda maker starter kits rose 25% to $49.9 million, while sales of consumables, including gas refills and flavors, grew 28% to $78.9 million. Sales of other products more than doubled to $3.6 million.
The company now expects full-year revenue to increase about 30% from 2012 revenue of $436.3 million. That would mean revenue of $567.2 million. It previously expected annual growth of 27%. Analysts expect full-year revenue of $558 million.
SodaStream also said it expects net income to grow 23%, up from 20%, and adjusted net income to grow 30%, up from 27%. The company did not provide per-share estimates.

'Threads' at Jerusalem's Tower of David Museum

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'To have new contemporary fashion within these walls -- just the juxtaposition of the new and the old is amazing.'

What happens when you ask 10 leading Israeli fashion designers to imagine an original outfit for 10 significant women in Israeli history?

You get "Threads," a new exhibition this summer at the Tower of David Museum in Jerusalem.

"Our research team researched each historical personality, then sat with the designers and explained their historical personality, why she was famous, why she was essential to our understanding of history, and the designers then just let inspiration rule their fantasies, and they created very original designs, each one very indicative of that designer's work," says Rose Ginosar, director of resource development for the museum in the ancient city walls.

"We're essentially a fortress. A fortress that's been standing here for over 1,000 years, and to have new contemporary fashion within these walls -- just the juxtaposition of the new and the old is amazing."

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Israel’s tallest tower to be built in Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv tallest building

Tel Aviv Municipality approves Keren Hakirya project, which includes construction of 80-story office building alongside three additional towers with up to 770 apartments

The Tel Aviv Municipality’s Local Committee has approved a plan for the construction of Israel’s tallest residential, business and leisure complex.
The Keren Hakirya project will see the construction of two 80-story and 50-story office buildings, which together include 100,000 square meters, and two 45-story residential buildings which will include up to 770 housing units.
The plan has now been submitted for the approval of the Tel Aviv District Committee. The project will be built on the corner of Shaul Hamelech and Weizmann streets.
As part of the plan, which is being promoted by the Israel Land Authority, 20% of the housing units in the project will be small apartments measuring up to 65 square meters (700 square feet), and the rest will measure 85 square meters (915 square feet).
The project is located on the northeastern corner of the northern Kirya Base compound, on an area of more than 9 acres, and is the second compound approved by the Municipality in the northern Kirya area.
The project was approved as part of the “green line agreement” signed between the Israel Land Authority, the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality and the Finance and Transportation ministries. The agreement includes several projects in the area and links their execution with a solution for creating an underground light rail on Ibn Gabirol Street (the Green Line).
According to the Israel Land Authority, the Keren Hakirya project aims to tackle the shortage of offices and apartments in Tel Aviv.