On the other hand

July 21, 2019 by Michael Kuttner
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Students are enjoying their long hot summer vacation and schools, universities, as well as other educational facilities, are taking a well-earned rest. This annual break, however, has not diminished the flow of positive developments in many fields, some of which are again detailed here for your enlightenment.

 

DOUBLE OY SEVEN OR OY OY SHEVA

A breaking news item is one of those “only in Israel” moments. The Mossad is in the process of recruiting Charedi “yeshiva bochers” to become the successor to James Bond, agent 007.

Spies working for Israel’s intelligence agency Mossad are quietly being joined by a new generation of sleuths who bring with them unique analytical skills and insights developed from years of immersion in Judaism’s Holy Scriptures.

The ultra-Orthodox population, accustomed to years of textual study, is trained in analytic and out-of-the-box thinking skills. Over the past two years Mossad has started integrating ultra-Orthodox members into its ranks, after long, customized training programs.

Two thousand Charedi applicants have been whittled down to 200, out of which some 70 to 80 people will be selected by a committee of representatives of the secret services, recruitment psychologists and Charedi-world specialists. Candidates will attend a year of preparatory classes at two sites in Jerusalem, where they will be taught a basic curriculum including intensive math and English. Then they will move on to courses taught on the campuses of Tel Aviv and Ben-Gurion universities. Some will focus on computer sciences and cyber security, while others will study social sciences with a focus on geopolitical and political developments to prepare for work as analysts for the security agencies.

Throughout their academic studies, students will continue their Torah and religious studies, maintaining the values they have grown up with. They will be closely accompanied on their journey by the Rabbi of the program.

A truly amazing development and portend of further barriers being smashed in the future.

UNIQUE “HAPPY HOUR”

Happy hour in most parts of the world means booze and perhaps nibbles in a pub during a certain period of the day or evening. In certain parts of Israel however this ritual has taken on a uniquely Jewish flavour.

At a co-working space on the 21st floor of a high-rise in Bnei Brak it is almost 1:30 p.m. on a Thursday, time for happy hour, something many co-working spaces organize to celebrate the end of the week.

At this happy hour, though, instead of wine and cheese and sandwiches, there is piping hot cholent — a stew of beans and meat that is traditionally eaten on Shabbat — along with freshly baked challah bread, beers and cold drinks.

There are two sinks in the kitchen: one to wash plates and cutlery for dairy food, and another for meat, in adherence to kashrut rules. Similarly, there are three microwaves: one to warm up meat or chicken, one for milk-based products and a third for pareve items.

The co-working space caters to the needs of Charedi entrepreneurs and tech workers. The non profit organization which sets up these co-working spaces sees as its mission to train Haredi men and women and place them in high-level tech jobs. To do this the firm has enrolled tech giants such as Google, Facebook, Mobileye, and VC firms operating in Israel, pushing them to diversify their workforce with candidates from a sector that has been sidelined by the tech boom. The organization has now a database of some 1,300 Charedi entrepreneurs (from almost zero just five or six years ago) who are trying to set up startups.

Times are truly changing.

PET THERAPY

Does your dog, cat or horse suffer from stress and anxiety symptoms which can lead to debilitating conditions?

Don’t worry; help is at hand thanks to Israeli ingenuity and innovation.

ANOTHER LIE EXPOSED

How often have you heard the slanderous untruth that Israel is an apartheid country? How many times have you wondered why your local media refuses to feature news which portrays Israel in a positive light and as a potent force for improving and saving the lives of those living in third world countries?

Watch this short video and then send it on to all your family, work colleagues and friends so that the real truth can be seen by as many people as possible.

 

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