On the other hand

January 12, 2020 by Michael Kuttner
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At the moment Israelis are fully occupied in coping with torrential winter downpours, flooded roads and freezing temperatures.

Iranian bellicose threats and its proxy partners’ sabre-rattling notwithstanding the average citizen is certainly not seized by any overt panic.

While the rest of the world obsesses over whether the demise of the world’s chief terrorist was right or wrong, Israelis are busier making sure that the world is a far better place.


To celebrate its 100th anniversary, the International Astronomical Union invited countries from around the world to name an “exoplanet” and its host star outside of the Milky Way galaxy. Over 4,000 planets have been found orbiting other stars, called exoplanets. As the planets are found, they are being catalogued with telephone like numbers, yet Eric Mamajek of the IAU states that “there has been growing interest amongst astronomers and the public alike in also assigning proper names, as is done for Solar System bodies.”

The IAU is the only official entity able to name celestial bodies, the invitation was sent to encourage public participation and curiosity. Over 780,000 people from 112 countries participated in the project, and Israel was among the top countries with the largest number of suggested names and people who participated, perhaps thanks to its elevated interest in space since its attempt to reach the moon with SpaceX.

The people of Israel submitted about 1,600 names to choose from, yet the winning name was Alef, the first letter in the Hebrew Alphabet, which has great symbolism within the many layers of Judaism. The star can’t be seen from earth and exists 1,500 light-years away in the Auriga constellation, outside the Milky Way, scientifically known as HAT-P-9b. Alef’s mother star is called Tevel, which translates into “universe”, and begins with the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet.


From Jon Medved, Founder and CEO, OurCrowd:

It is no exaggeration to say that healthcare is undergoing a revolution no less earth-shaking than the discovery of germ theory or the introduction of antibiotics.  Digital health – the application of digital technologies to healthcare – is transforming our approach to medicine and improving our well-being.  As the global population ages and healthcare demands accelerate, supplies and services cannot keep pace.  Digital health solutions offer the promise of delivering more for less – and hold the potential to positively impact the lives of current and future generations.

Nowhere is this revolution more evident than in Israel, where 100% of the healthcare system is digitized, both at the individual patient level and throughout its organizations.  As The Lancet observed, “With its many start-up enterprises, Israel encourages digital innovation and this culture will help tackle some of the key challenges facing the country’s health systems.” In fact, Israel-based companies are helping healthcare systems in other countries get online and get secure, efficient and cost-effective.


 Caesarea Port and National Park in Israel ranked 12th among 50 most recommended tourism sites in the world for 2020 by Travel + Leisure magazine.

 Due to its “happy marriage of antiquity and modernity,” Caesarea ranked highest and most recommended compared to all other tourist destinations in the Middle East.

Caesarea is noted for offering visitors a wealth of archaeological finds going back thousands of years, alongside a daytime and nighttime leisure complex including a diving centre, art galleries, coffee shops and fine restaurants facing the sea.

The site recently underwent a reconstruction and development project led by Baroness Ariane de Rothschild. New installations include a visitors’ centre, coastal promenade, wall promenade and Crusader Market.


The Israeli Andalusia Orchestra of Ashdod is world-famous. Its music recreating Arabic and Spanish themes is a cultural bridge between Israel and North African Arab societies.

Recently in a groundbreaking “first” the orchestra performed in Casablanca in the presence of Government representatives and enthusiastic locals from all walks of Moroccan society.

Having personally attended one of their concerts in Jerusalem I can attest to the haunting quality of their music.


Within the last few hours news has broken that Israeli scientists and researchers have developed a revolutionary new type of laser beam which can shoot down a multitude of incoming projectiles. Utilising cutting edge technology this new system will cost a fraction of current anti-missile weapons and be much more versatile and effective.


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