67 but not retiring

In Israel and in many other countries, the age of 67 is when adults usually leave employment and start receiving their old-age pension.  But as the State of Israel celebrates its own 67th birthday it shows no sign of stopping its work to benefit humanity, and is even increasing its tremendous pace of innovation.

There have been many recent Israeli medical advances to combat that scourge of aging – cancer.  They include Rosetta Genomics’s microRNA-based test helps physicians select the best treatment options for patients with secondary cancers.  Another is the joint project that 68-year-old Israel Technion Professor and Nobel Prize Winner Aaron Ciechanover has initiated with India’s Sun Pharma to develop new cancer treatments.  Also at the Technion, Israeli-Arab Professor Hossam Haick has proved that his NaNose breath-test cancer detector was just as effective as older, slower, costlier and more invasive alternatives.  And you should hear Tel Aviv University Professor Dan Peer describe the nano-technology that promises one-day to retire cancer completely, from the list of killer diseases.

It is true that younger animals and humans recover from operations faster than older ones.  Researchers at Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem have even shown that being pregnant also improves recovery time.  But was it youth, motivation, physiotherapy or the use of a Wii console that helped Captain Shir Klevner return to his unit, only 8 months after a Hamas sniper’s bullet shattered his leg and threatened to retire him from the IDF?

67-year-old Israel is launching startups at rocket speed – enabled, in part, by a new accelerator for young companies developing satellite information-based applications. Meanwhile, an older Israeli satellite-focused company, RR Media, has invested in its future by purchasing Romania’s Eastern Space Systems.  It extends RR Media’s Intelsat coverage to more than 17 million TV households in Central, Eastern and Nordic Europe.

Israel’s Checkpoint may be an old-timer in the cyber-security business, but it can spot a promising upstart. Which is probably why it purchased Israel’s Lacoon - developers of cyber security software that prevents the spread of computer viruses by recognizing their behavior.  Another relative newcomer - Israeli kids’ games publisher TabTable - is growing up fast, having just made its 4th acquisition (and its first in the USA) with the purchase of rival Sunstorm Games.

Israel’s non-stop desire to innovate has definitely taken root in the field of agricultural technology.  Researchers in the south of Israel have developed a variety of seedless grape that can be harvested throughout the year.  And Israel’s Danziger Innovations together with the Hebrew University’s Yissum tech-transfer company have developed a patented technology that extends the shelf life of popular flowers.

More and more Israeli companies are looking to grow bigger these days, as highlighted by the massive $1.5 billion that 11 of them raised on Wall Street in the first 3 months of this year.  Analysts were certainly ramping up the sentiment about one of them - Kornit and its digital inkjet garment printing, using non-toxic water-based inks.

It is appropriate that on Israel’s Independence Day, veteran Israeli actor Chaim Topol, best known for playing Tevye the milkman in "Fiddler on the Roof," will receive the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement.  And just recently, at the grand old age of 30, Israel’s long-serving tennis player Dudi Sela won his 17th ATP Challenger Tour title. 

Finally, six Israeli men from the Shomron wanted to increase the chances that six complete strangers would live to reach their 67th birthdays.  They each donated one of their kidneys to transplant patients. 

Israel ….. forever and ever ….

Michael Ordman writes a free weekly newsletter containing positive news stories about Israel.
For a free subscription, email a request to michael.goodnewsisrael@gmail.com

Time is on Our Side

After 2000 years of exile, the citizens of the modern State of Israel can be proud of their phenomenal technological achievements in just 67 years.  It’s as if the gift of Time itself has been bestowed on the Jewish State for the benefit of humanity.

Israel is at the forefront of the age-old fight against cancer.  In 2004 Professor Aaron Ciechanover of Israel’s Technion won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry by identifying the ubiquitin pathway that controls the timing of cell death.  11 years later, scientists working in Professor Ciechanover’s laboratory, have identified the chemicals in the body that suppress malignant growth and protect healthy cells.  In another line of research, scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have identified that tumors can be triggered by information-overload at the cell level.  They have also found a molecule that can block inter-cell messages, allowing the cell nucleus more time to behave correctly.  Meanwhile, up to 20 Nobel Prize laureates are giving up their time this summer, in order to attend the World Science Conference in Jerusalem.  The five-day event will be the largest such event of its kind ever to be held, attracting scientists and thinkers from 60 countries.

There is no time like the present for dispelling the long-held view that we cannot reverse the effects of time on our bodies.  Now you can rejuvenate your arteries by consuming pomegranate juice and dates together - according to researchers at Israel’s Technion and Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center.  And following research by scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute, it won’t be too long before heart tissue can be re-grown to replace that damaged by heart disease or heart attack.

Imagine how much medical research and diagnostic time can be saved in the future once Israeli startup Zebra Medical Vision has built up its database of anonymous medical images (X-rays, CT scans and MRI scans).   Due to privacy laws, such data was unavailable previously.  And surgeons in the USA can now take their time planning hip replacements following FDA approval of the TraumaCad iPhone / iPad mobile app developed by Israeli health-tech firm Voyant.  It allows doctors to download a digital image of the patient’s hip, simultaneously with that of the new implant, in order to simulate the operation.

Israel’s success can partly be attributed to the many incubators and accelerators that give hundreds of startup companies time to grow their business.  Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist is opening three new hi-tech incubators in Akko, Haifa and the Golan, each running for 8 years.  Then at Israel’s Startup Fusion 2015 on 22nd March, over a dozen startups, (including 3 Japanese and 3 Turkish) competed for a $100,000 seed investment to be provided by Samurai Incubate.  And when the time comes for these startups to make the decision whether to sell out to the big multinationals, many have now come to realize that they should stay the course and grow into big Israeli companies.

Over 100 students from 11 European countries found their time well spent when they attended a free 4-day electron microscope workshop at Israel’s Technion.  And the engineers supervising the Delphi Automotive “Roadruner” driverless car had plenty of time to relax and enjoy the record-breaking 3,400-mile ride as the Advanced Drive Assistance System from Israel’s Mobileye guided them from San Francisco to Manhattan.

We now come full circle, back to hospital, where Israeli doctors took their time in performing the complex surgery necessary to enable a Syrian boy to walk again after he was severely injured by a shell in Syria’s civil war.  During his recovery time during the festival of Passover, the boy even enjoyed the time-honored tradition of eating matza crackers.  In contrast, time was of the essence for 27-year-old Ran Azulai, who was born with a serious congenital defect.  After 3 previous heart operations, Ran had very little time to live when surgeons replaced his heart and two lungs in a rare, complex last-minute operation.  The donor’s other organs extended the lives of three more patients.

There is just time to mention two innovative Israeli medical devices.  Israel’s Teva has now received FDA approval for its ProAir RespiClick inhaler for asthmatics.  The device is the first of its kind that is breath-activated, which means the user doesn’t need to co-ordinate the timing of his/her breathing with manual activation of the inhaler.  The other device is the MD-Logic Artificial Pancreas developed by Israel’s DreaMed Diabetes. DreaMed has struck a deal with Medtronic, the world’s biggest medical device company, to use the algorithm of the Artificial Pancreas in Medtronic’s insulin pumps.  The algorithm ensures that the timing of the release of insulin is regulated exactly to the needs of the individual diabetic.

We go into extra time, to visit Jerusalem - Israel’s ancient and modern capital - to relive the time when gazelles grazed in the outskirts of the holy city.  On 30 March, Jerusalem’s Mayor Barkat formally opened the Gazelle Valley Nature Park to the public.  The 62-acre park cost NIS 90 million and is Israel’s first urban nature reserve. It even contains a female gazelle from the original wild herd that lived in the area, plus others from zoos and their offspring.

Finally, there is a new opportunity for world leaders to understand and appreciate the bond linking the Jewish people to the Land of Israel from time immemorial.  The exhibit entitled “People, Book, Land – The 3,500 Year Relationship of the Jewish People and the Land of Israel” has just opened at the headquarters of the United Nations in New York.  The words of that timeless folk song are:  “When will they ever learn?  When will they ever learn?”  Perhaps the answer is:

“In time”

Michael Ordman writes a free weekly newsletter containing positive news stories about Israel.
For a free subscription, email a request to michael.goodnewsisrael@gmail.com

Israel is the Smart choice

The current news is full of smart Israeli solutions that benefit the world.  It also contains many examples of smart countries, companies and individuals that have recognized this important role of the Jewish State.

Israeli biotech SynVaccine is developing smart, safe synthetic vaccines from the tissue of the recipient’s own cells that the body’s immune system can recognize.  SynVaccine also generates the vaccine using computer technology rather than from a potentially dangerous live virus.  Meanwhile, Tel Aviv University and Schneider Medical Center researchers have made the smart discovery of a genetic mutation responsible for Primary Ovarian Insufficiency (POI) that affects one percent of all women worldwide.  The cause came to light after they DNA tested two Israeli-Arab cousins with the condition.  And the smart staff at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center realized that although they delivered 22,413 babies in 2014 (probably the largest number in the world for one hospital) they could prevent many subsequent deaths and injuries if they provided free infant car seats to get the babies home safely.  Please watch this video to see more of Shaare Zedek’s smart innovations.

Israel’s smart surgeons treat everyone regardless of nationality or religion.
-         Such as the complex heart surgery to save 18-month old Iraqi Christian Maryam Mansour.
-         Or the Syrian boy treated after he lost a leg in an explosion and for whom six Israeli medical students subsequently bought a smart new digital tablet with their own money.

Some of the thousands of Israeli smart apps for smartphones and mobile devices include
-         Green Road Technologies’ smart vehicle monitors that save fuel and reduce accidents.
-         E2C’s interface that makes smartphones easier to use for seniors and the technically challenged.

The future of Israeli smart innovations is encouraging, as indicated by the fact that Israeli companies and entities registered 3,555 patents in the United States in 2014 – a 21 per cent increase on 2013.  So it’s not surprising that the smart researchers at Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science were awarded the top percentage of grants by the European Research Council’s 7th Framework Program. 

An increasing number of international organizations are becoming wise to the facts about Israel’s smart innovations.  They include
-         The delegation of US reporters and editors who came to Israel’s Ben-Gurion University to see cutting-edge Israeli research in neuroscience, stem cells and medical robotics. 
-         The delegation of leaders from the Miami tech-startup community who have just spent a week in Israel learning from our thriving tech and innovation sector.
-         And the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, which will showcase Israel’s contributions to the world at its 27th annual international conference in Montreal on 29th April.

Countries that have been smart enough to call upon Israel’s help recently include:
-         Taiwan, where Israel has been giving smart advice to the government about public campaigns, recycling and better infrastructure that will alleviate Taiwan’s worst drought in over a decade. 
-         China, which sent a delegation from the city of Shouguang to Israel, as part of the Water City project that Israel is leading. 
-         South Korea, where a delegation of Israeli cyber security companies is showing how Israeli technology can better secure the Asian state.
-         Rwanda, which Israel is helping jump-start its technology ecosystem, using education, skills exchange and investment.
-         And Kenya, where the smartest of its agricultural entrepreneurs hopes to win the Israel Kenya Agri Challenge and where Tel Aviv University’s Pears Challenge for Innovation and International Development encourages smart Israeli agricultural entrepreneurs to develop tech solutions for Kenyan farmers.

Smart companies are investing heavily in Israeli hi-tech companies. 
-         Horizons Ventures, owned by Asia’s richest man - Li Ka-shing, is Israel’s largest foreign startup investor and did a very smart job in persuading Israel’s Waze to accept its funds. 
-         Spanish bank Santander has invested in MyCheck - the largest mobile payment company in Israel.  The move is also smart for MyCheck, which now has access to Sandander’s 107 million-plus customers across Europe and the Americas.

Israel has also been smart to recognize talent within its borders.  Tarek Abu-Hamed, a Palestinian Arab from Sur Baher in East Jerusalem, has just been named as deputy chief scientist of Israel’s Ministry of Science, Technology and Space.

Finally, news has only just come to light about Muslim nuclear scientist Noha Hashad who spent 11 years in an Egyptian jail, for conducting pro-Jewish Quran research.  During the chaos following President Mubarak’s overthrow in 2011, she escaped and fled to Israel.  “Israel is like a jewel, a diamond, I am very fortunate to be here,” she said.

Now that is Smart thinking!

Michael Ordman writes a free weekly newsletter containing positive news stories about Israel.
For a free subscription, email a request to michael.goodnewsisrael@gmail.com


Just look at us Go

Just before the first Passover, over 3,500 years ago, Moses demanded of the Egyptian Pharaoh to “Let my People Go”. I’m sure that today Moses would be proud of the lengths to which the modern Jewish nation goes, in order to benefit humanity.

Israeli scientists are constantly going where no one has gone before.  Researchers at Israel’s Ben Gurion University have gone deep into the behavior of a mutant gene to discover a new molecular mechanism that governs how neuro-degenerative diseases such as ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) attacks motor neurons.  They have gone even further and identified that the protein MIF inhibits this mechanism.  Meanwhile, Israel’s BrainTech 2015 Conference has brought top international brain technologists to Tel Aviv to learn about the latest innovative ‘brain initiatives’ going on around the world.  And would you like to know what is going on in someone’s brain?  Well the winning project at this year’s Brainihack in Tel Aviv, Israeli-developed Emochat, used an Israeli Neurosteer Brain Computer Interface device to interpret another person’s emotions based on their brain activity.

In other parts of the body, Israeli scientists have engineered tiny robots to enable cancer-killing drugs to go directly to a tumor.  And two Israeli companies, Vectorious Medical and SHL Telemedicine are going forward with their systems that go over wireless networks to perform remote monitoring of heart patients. 

Israel’s humanitarian workers go to any lengths to save lives.  The surgeons of Israel’s Save A Child’s Heart (SACH) regularly go into action to treat sick children from Syria, Iraq, or Jordan. And every Tuesday Palestinian Arab children from Gaza and Judea & Samaria arrive at Israel’s Wolfson medical center in Holon for treatment and check-ups by SACH doctors.  Then, whenever a natural disaster strikes citizens of a far away country, the Israeli organization IsraAID is always one of the first to go to their aid.  Residents of the tiny islands of Vanuatu called the Israelis “a light unto the nations” as IsraAID distributed over 40 tons of rice, flour and drinking water to residents of the Tongoa and Mataso islands that were devastated by Cyclone Pam.

Israel is going from strength to strength as its next generation follows in the footsteps of its Nobel Prize-winning scientists.  Twelve Israeli teenagers won the top prizes in the Intel-Israel Young Scientists Competition in Jerusalem.  Their projects covered medicine, mathematics, linguistics, music, anthropology and satellite technology.  All twelve will go to the finals in Pittsburgh and Milan and receive academic scholarships.  And Israel’s Center for Educational Technology has been going into the classroom to enroll hundreds of Israeli middle and high schools in the biggest computer-programming contest in Israeli history.  Students can win a share of prizes totaling NIS 100,000 by writing computer code using CodeMonkey - an Israeli interactive computer game.

Israeli entrepreneurs and innovators have gone far and wide recently:

-         To Barcelona, where crowds flocked to the Israel pavilion at the Mobile World Congress to see the innovative Israeli products and apps on show.

-         To New York, where around 250 Israeli startups and leading investors are taking part in the Israel Dealmakers Summit, which this year focuses on digital media, cleantech, Web infrastructure, medical equipment, big data and cloud computing.

-         Into orbit, where Israel’s Intelescope Solutions is transforming the forestry industry, using drone and satellite imagery to produce an accurate inventory of forests in the US, Canada, Brazil, Australia, South Africa, Indonesia, India, and China.

-         Into kids educational games, where the 350 games developed by Israel’s TabTale have been downloaded 600 million times.

-         And into social enterprises, where Impact Investing Israel has organized Israel’s first Impact Investing Conference to motivate investors and startups to go and develop real tangible and measurable benefits to mankind.

Israelis go out of their way to help others.  On Good Deeds Day, which this year was on 24 March, a record number of Israeli volunteers joined in 10,000 projects, such as going in to neighborhoods to clean up nature parks and beaches, to distribute food to the needy and to go and help the handicapped and disadvantaged.  And as we go into the season of our Freedom, 110 Ukrainian Jews made their Exodus to Israel in a special refugee rescue flight sponsored by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews.

To finish, here is a video of Technion’s go-getting engineering students going speedily through a “moving” account of the Passover story.


Finally, please go and try out IsraelActive.com - my brand new on-line database of positive news stories from Israel.  Now anytime you wish you can go and search easily through 7000 news articles about the beneficial work that Israel is doing on almost every subject and in every part of the world.

Here in Israel, it’s all go!

Michael Ordman writes a free weekly newsletter containing positive news stories about Israel.
For a free subscription, email a request to michael.goodnewsisrael@gmail.com

History of Israel's Good News - Jan to Mar 2015


In the 29th Mar 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli scientists have discovered a new way to combat specific brain diseases.
·        Two of the many examples of Israeli Arab and Jewish kids studying and playing together.
·        The worldwide demand for Israeli cyber security products and skills.
·        Israeli satellite technology is mapping forests across the planet.
·        Israel’s unemployment rate has reached an all-time record low.
·        110 Ukrainian Jews make exodus to Israel in time for the festival of Freedom.
·        The launch of IsraelActive.com – my brand new on-line database of Israel’s positive news.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “The Water of Life” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also published on the Jerusalem Post, IsraelSeen, San Diego Jewish World and United With Israel websites.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, Janglo, and United With Israel with extra features on health, coexistence, technology and trade.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.  Thank You Michelle and other readers for sending me links to so many of these positive news articles.


Brain disease mechanism discovered.  Researchers at Israel’s Ben Gurion University and the University of California have discovered a new molecular mechanism in a mutant gene that governs how ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) attacks motor neurons.  They have also identified that the protein MIF inhibits this mechanism.  The discovery is also relevant to other neuro-degenerative diseases.

BrainTech 2015.  (TY Michelle) Here is a roundup by “neurotech entrepreneur” Yannick Roy of the first day of Israel Brain Technologies’ BrainTech 2015 Conference in Tel Aviv.  The speakers focused on the main joint ‘brain initiatives’ being conducted around the world.

Israeli nanotechnology explained.  TY Israel21c for a fascinating discussion of how Israeli scientists are engineering the tiniest parts of matter to make life better for millions of people around the world.  Applications include a tiny robot transporting drugs to a cancer cell in your body; or artificial retina to restore lost sight.

A study, not to be sniffed at.  (TY Nocamels.com) One of the more unusual studies by scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute has uncovered that humans imitate one of the habits of dogs; by sniffing the odor of someone they meet.  They do this by subconsciously sniffing their own hand after shaking the other person’s.

Device to prevent heart failure.  (TY Michelle) Israel’s Vectorious Medical has raised $5 million to take its miniature wireless hemodynamic monitoring sensory implant into human trials.  The device measures and reports left atria pressure - a reliable early indication of cardiac deterioration, which medication can treat.

An even bigger heart.  Israel’s SHL Telemedicine specializes in providing remote diagnosis and monitoring services for patients suffering from chronic heart failure (CHF) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).  Its second German acquisition in two years is GPH, which monitors 10,000 heart patients.


63.5% Israeli-Arab election turnout.  Nearly two-thirds of Israel’s Arab population voted in the recent Israeli elections.  http://www.jpost.com/Israel-Elections/Arab-sector-turnout-for-recent-elections-reached-635-percent-polling-data-shows-394878

PA & Israeli girls study animal welfare together.  40 girls from Jericho and Beit Shemesh participated in an event called "New Spring – New Hope," at the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel.  They visited animals and listened to a lecture in Hebrew and Arabic about the importance of treating animals kindly.

Baseball for all.  (TY David Levy) The Israel Association of Baseball (IAB) launched Baseball for All (Baseball Le’Kulam), the first ever program to teach Jewish and Arab Israeli children to play baseball.  28 sixth graders from Modiin and Ramle learned about baseball as they also learned about one another.

Israel’s medical diplomacy in action.  The parents of children awaiting heart surgery by surgeons of Israel’s Save A Child’s Heart (SACH) are nervous, because being in Israel at all is a big risk for someone from Syria, Iraq, or Jordan. And every Tuesday children from Gaza, Judea & Samaria arrive for surgery and check-ups.

India’s PM tweets in Hebrew.  (TY Greg) Relations between India and Israel have improved so much since India’s new Prime Minister Narendra Modi was elected.  After Israel’s elections, Mr Modi tweeted in Hebrew, “Mazel tov, my friend Bibi @Netanyahu. I remember our meeting in New York last September warmly.”

In Vanuatu, everyone loves Israel.  IsraAID workers discovered that the residents of the tiny islands of Vanuatu love Israel and called the Israelis “a light unto the nations”.  IsraAID distributed over 40 tons of rice, flour and drinking water to residents of the Tongoa and Mataso islands that were devastated by Cyclone Pam.


The world leader in cyber security.  (TY Michelle) To coincide with CyberTech 2015 in Tel Aviv, here is a link to the inside story of how the best and brightest Israelis go from the army’s elite cyber security unit to launch innovative startup companies.  And this article explains why Israeli cyber security will continue to be a driving force in the Israeli hi-tech ecosystem.  Even Chinese on-line shopping giant Alibaba is investing in it.

Cyber security for Portugal.  Israel’s CyberGym has signed a NIS 45 million deal with the Portuguese electricity company Energias de Portugal (EDP) to plan, build, and maintain a cyber-defense training facility. CyberGym is jointly owned by the Israel Electric Company and Israeli IT company Liacom Systems.

UK announces 3 joint Israeli cyber Uni ventures.  (TY Michelle) Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office responsible for cyber security, announced 3 UK-Israel academic collaboration ventures that will receive cyber research funding.  They link UK’s universities of Bristol, Kent and UCL with Israel’s Bar Ilan and Haifa.

12 young science geniuses.  Twelve teenagers won the top prizes in the Intel-Israel Young Scientists Competition in Jerusalem.  Their projects covered medicine, mathematics, linguistics, music, anthropology and satellite technology.  The twelve will travel to finals in Pittsburgh and Milan and receive academic scholarships.

Hundreds of schools in tech contest.  Hundreds of Israeli middle and high schools are participating in the biggest programming contest in Israeli history, with prizes totaling NIS 100,000. Israel’s Center for Educational Technology wants students to learn to write code, using CodeMonkey - an Israeli interactive computer game.

Brainihack 2015.  The winning project at this year’s Brainihack in Tel Aviv, Emochat, used a Neurosteer Brain Computer Interface device to interpret another person’s emotions based on their brain activity. So no need anymore to see facial expression or hear voice tone.

Microsoft’s opens new Haifa R&D center.  24 years after selecting Haifa for its first Research & Development center outside the US, Microsoft is inaugurating a new R&D center in the city.  The new building will cover 7,500 sq.m, houses 150 engineers and allows Microsoft to expand by hiring dozens more.

Multinational cooperation week.  The Israeli R&D centers of Motorola, Microsoft, Marvell Technology, Deutsche Telekom, Citibank, Kodak, and GE are holding their third Weekathon in three years to develop new products together.  Each company is sending up to 5 senior programmers to develop “the next big thing”.

The most popular national pavilion.  (TY Michelle) The crowds flocked to the Israel pavilion at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.  Here is a roundup of some of the innovative Israeli products and apps on show. 

Magisto revolutionizes Facebook.  Magisto, an Israeli video storytelling platform with more than 55 million registered users, is a key part of Facebook’s newly launched Messenger Platform. Using Magisto’s patented AI technology, EmotionSense, text and photos are transformed into a video with music, motion and special effects.

Real-time road-traffic information.  (TY Michelle) Israel’s Decell Technologies provides historical and predictive road-traffic information captured from smartphones and GPS-enabled car systems in Tel Aviv, Vienna, Prague, Warsaw and Bratislava.  Decell has just been acquired by US-based AirSage.

Transforming the forestry industry.  Israel’s Intelescope Solutions utilizes drone and satellite imagery to produce an accurate inventory of a forest.  Forestry companies in the US, Canada, Brazil, Australia, South Africa, Indonesia, India, and China utilize services from Intelescope, which just raised $8.3 million of funds.

Where to go next with your smartphone?  (TY Michelle) Israel’s Deeplink.me has launched AppWords - a mobile search and ad platform that uses keywords to trigger relevant content between one app and another.  E.g. after finishing booking with a theatre tickets app, you receive “bids” for your custom from your restaurant apps.

Citi launches tech challenge in Jerusalem.  (TY David Levy) International banking giant Citi has launched the Citi Mobile Challenge in Europe (London & Warsaw), The Middle East (Jerusalem) and Africa (Nairobi).  Developers can win $100,000 and Citi support by building innovative solutions based on Citi’s digital platform.

Israeli scientists calculate Saturn’s “day”.  (TY Geoff) Scientists at at Tel Aviv University have solved the mystery of Saturn's days, determining that one day on the planet lasts 10 hours and a little more than 32 minutes – seven minutes shorter than originally calculated.


Economy improves.  The Bank of Israel's Composite State of the Economy Index increased by 0.25 percent in February 2015.  Reasons included increased house building, trade revenue and job vacancies.  Also a surge in purchases of new cars, due to reduced taxes.  And (TY Michelle) investment in Israeli hi-tech is surging ahead.

Unemployment is at the lowest ever level.  Israel’s unemployment rate in February fell dramatically from 5.6% to 5.3% - the lowest adjusted rate ever recorded by Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics.

Israel Dealmakers Summit.  About 250 Israeli startups and leading investors are taking part in the Israel Dealmakers Summit in New York.  The summit is focusing on digital media, cleantech, Web infrastructure, medical equipment, big data and cloud computing.  And (TY Michelle) Venture capitalists are eager to attend.

“Startup Nation” index.  The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange and BlueStar Indexes on Tuesday launched a “Start-up Nation Index” that will track Israeli tech companies listed both locally and internationally.  The BlueStar Israel Global Technology Index (BIGITech) comprises 57 companies, with a total share value of $75 billion.

“Doing good, while doing well.”  Impact Investing Israel has a mission to motivate investors and startups to develop real tangible and measurable benefits to mankind.  It organized Israel’s first Impact Investing Conference, primarily for investors, but showcasing 11 Israeli startups that can improve the health of society.

Watch this cyber-security company.  Israel’s Sentrix has been named Network World / CIO as one of the 10 young cyber-security companies to watch in 2015.  Sentrix protects websites against attack by innovative technology called “cloud replication and attack surface reduction” - acknowledged as a game changer.

Global leader in kids educational games.  (TY Michelle) An excellent interview of Sagi Schliesser, CEO of Israel’s TabTale. Founded in 2010 to make kids games and education apps, it now publishes a game every week on iOS, Google Play, Amazon, and Windows. Its 350 games have been downloaded 600 million times.

Frutarom acquires more flavor.  Israel’s Frutarom Industries has bought Belgian flavors company Taiga International.  It is Frutarom’s sixth acquisition since the start of 2014.

Facebook hire more Israelis.  (TY Michelle) Facebook Israel will be hiring 40 new employees - 30 for its R&D center and 10 for marketing.  It is Facebook’s first recruitment drive since purchasing acquired Israeli startup Onavo in late 2013 and turning it into its Israeli R&D center.

Shopping for Israeli startups.  Jonathan Wall, e-commerce director at UK’s Shop Direct, is in Israel to meet 15 Israeli startups, and hopes to find technology solutions to help increase his annual £1.7 billion sales of 50 million products to five million customers. (I featured Shop Direct’s link with Israel’s Cimagine last year.)


Enjoy spring flowers in the Galilee.  TY Chana & Shmuel of Galilee Green and Villa Rimona, for sending their video of the rare wild iris and other spring flowers on Mount Gilboa in the Galilee.

Golden Boy.  Israel’s entry for the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest is Nadav Guedj singing “Golden Boy”.

Simcha girls in TV quarterfinals.  My good friend Leonie Lachmish and her daughter Yahala reached the quarterfinals of the Israeli Musical Family series on Israeli TV.  Although they didn’t win, the jury loved their performance.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uWl5nLhNI0


Heaven’s ambassador.  South Africa’s Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein gave a fitting tribute to Yehuda Avner, who died last week.  Ambassador Avner, advisor and speechwriter to five Israeli Prime Ministers, brought “kindness, faith and justice to a world which so desperately needs these Torah values now more than ever.”

Good Deeds Day.  A record number of Israeli volunteers organized 10,000 projects for Good Deeds Day on 24 March, such as cleaning up beaches, neighborhoods and distributing food to the needy. Acre opened a new park that offers unique and challenging activities for hundreds of youths with special needs, alongside their families.

110 Ukraine Jews make Passover exodus.  A special refugee rescue flight sponsored by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFJC) has brought 110 Ukrainian Jews on their aliyah trip home to Israel.  It was the third flight sponsored by IFJC since December, totaling 560 Jews from Ukraine alone.

Yad Sarah produces large-font Haggada.  In addition to providing equipment to bring the disabled home for Passover, Israel’s largest volunteer organization, Yad Sarah has released a 67-page, Hebrew-language Passover Haggada in extra large type so those with vision problems can follow the text.  It is available for download at www.yadsarah.org.il/images/stories/pdf/hagada.pdf

Charoset-flavored ice cream.  One of the Kosher for Pesach flavors of ice cream produced by Vermont USA-based Ben and Jerry’s is “Charoset” - one of the items on the Passover Seder plate. It is available only in Israel.  The flavor debuted in 2012 when described as “vanilla-based with apples and cinnamon, and lots of walnuts.”  http://www.bustle.com/articles/71377-charoset-flavored-ben-and-jerrys-ice-cream-exists-in-israel-and-yes-its-kosher-for-passover

A Technion Passover miracle.  (TY Myer) Here is a video of how students at Israel’s Technion Institute put together a “moving” account of the Passover story.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=baQfqoZrEvI

IsraelActive is launched.  I have great pleasure in launching IsraelActive.com - my brand new on-line database of positive news stories from Israel.  Now you easily search 7000 news articles about the beneficial work that Israel is doing on every subject and in every part of the world.  Thanks to Jake Binstein who built IsraelActive.


In the 22nd Mar 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·         New Israeli electronic lenses automatically focus on what you are looking at.
·         After the highest election turnout in 16 years, Israel has a record number of women lawmakers.
·         Israeli aid workers are already saving lives in the devastated islands of Vanuatu.
·         Israeli water experts are helping to build floating desalination plants in Norway.
·         An Israeli company exports salt to Russia.
·         The Batmitzvah girl in the Copenhagen tragedy finally celebrated in Jerusalem.

·         Last week’s JPost Israel Good News Special Feature.  Click here for “What is Israel fighting for?” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on IsraelSeen and United With Israel.

·         Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, Janglo, and United With Israel with focus on health.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.  Thank You Michelle and Hazel again and to many others for the links to many exciting news stories.


Electronic lenses that help you see straight.  Israeli start-up DeepOptics has developed electronic multifocal lenses. Using sensors, they detect what the eye is focusing on as well as the viewing distance - adjusting the power of your spectacles to ensure that whatever is being looked at comes into focus, whether near or far.

Safe robotic syringe.  The robotic dispensing system from Israel’s RescueDose makes the preparation and administration of liquid medication safer by adding accurate doses automatically and minimizing human contact.  RescueDose is already used to dispense radiation treatments for cancer patients.

Sound analysis of sleep disorder.  The term “sound asleep” is very appropriate to the discovery by Ben Gurion University researchers of a simple, cheap way to evaluate sleep disorders.  Using their innovative breath sound analysis (BSA) algorithm, patients with sleep quality, snoring and sleep apnea problems can be analyzed easily.

UK and Israel to tackle dementia.  A delegation of senior British scientists and companies is in Israel, to work with Israel on dementia. They are following up on December’s joint meeting of the British Neuroscience Association and the Israel Society for Neuroscience in Eilat.

Link between weaning and diabetes.  Researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have discovered that the pancreatic cells of some young mice fail to produce insulin in response to glucose during the transition from mother’s milk to calcium-enriched food.  It may explain why some children develop Type 1 diabetes.

Israel has the brains to solve brain problems.  Great praise from US congressman Chaka Fattah – the man in charge of appropriating federal money for science and medical research and development programs.  Fattah, was a keynote speaker at BrainTech 2015 event in Tel Aviv.  Per capita, Israel leads the world in neuroscience.


A win for democracy.  Following the highest turnout (71.8%) since 1999, the next Knesset will contain a record number of women (28) and 17 Arabs.  The 23% of female MKs compares to 20% in the US.  The turnout amongst Israeli-Arab voters was particularly high.

Jerusalem’s photos of the day.  Arab and Jewish girls pose together at the start of the Jerusalem marathon. (Photo credit to Sharon Altshul - www.rjstreets.com)  Also see the varied voters at Israel’s election (TY Hazel)

Top priority.  (TY Hazel) Israel’s President Reubin Rivlin held a soccer event at the presidential residence, inviting children and soccer stars from around the country to participate in an effort to raise awareness against violence and racism. http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Sports/Watch-President-Rivlin-plays-soccer-with-youth-at-residence-393718

“Israel is a safe haven for Christians.”  Newsletter readers already know the truth of that statement. Now it has been incorporated into the “Shalom Declaration” circulated by UK Christian organizations.  The declaration is expected to be signed by more than 800 Christians at a gathering in London, UK later this month.

Bedouin Arabs and the JNF.  If the New York Times won’t publish the response to its false accusations about the JNF, please read it here.  Read about its Wadi Atir project; about efforts to calm Bedouin children under fire from Hamas terrorists; care for disabled Bedouin at JNF-sponsored ALEH Negev and much, much more.

More PA Arabs can work in Israel.  (TY Hazel) Palestinian Arab men over 55 and over 50 no longer need a permit to enter Israel from Judea and Samaria to work. Married men over the age of 22 can also now apply (previously only married Palestinian Arab men over 24 who had children could work in Israel).

Gazans pray in Jerusalem.  (TY Hazel) Two hundred Gazans travelled in buses to Israel via the Erez crossing, to Friday prayers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque.  (as reported in the Arab press)

Social business winners.  (TY Michelle) The goal of Israel’s B the Change Competition is to promote startups to improve quality of life for millions of marginalized people.  So look out for these winners - ESCO (supports startups)  KitchenBug, MobileODT (affordable healthcare), Tulip Winery and VoiceITT (for speech-impaired).

Israel opens Lithuanian embassy.  Israel has opened its first embassy in Lithuania.  The embassy is in the capital Vilnius (Vilna) where Jews comprised a quarter of the population before WW2.  Israel’s first ambassador to the Baltic nation is Amir Maimon.  Lithuania’s embassy in Israel opened in 1992.

Israel sends aid team to Vanuatu.  A multi-sector emergency response team from Israel-based IsraAID has arrived on the remote islands of Vanuatu, devastated by Cyclone Pam.  After meeting government officials and UN agencies in the capital Port Vila, IsraAID started distributing water and rice and more Israeli aid is coming.
(Info from IsraAID’s Shachar Zahavi)


Israeli university joins International energy consortium.  Ben-Gurion University of the Negev will be part of an international academic, research and corporate consortium to create a Ph.D. program on thermal energy storage (TES) technologies.  TES heats or cools a storage medium so that the stored energy can be used later.

Altair extends battery life on 4G devices.  Israel’s Altair Semiconductor has developed a new chipset that will help the LTE batteries that power 4G devices to run with 10 times less power and half the cost of using current LTE technology.  Current 4G devices include smart meters and alarms and many more are in development.

Tech to repair the world.  The first ever TOM (Tikkun Olam - repair the world) Maker event took place in Nazareth. It focused on helping people with special needs to integrate better in the community - find a job, to sit with friends in cafes, stroll the streets etc.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jz7Jo V5hiNU  http://www.tomtlv.org/?page_id=780

Australia receives Israeli research delegation.  Assistant Minister for Defense, Stuart Robert met with a defense research delegation from Israel to discuss areas of mutual interest including science and technology. 

Israelis get smarter phones.  Israelis bought 2.85 million smartphones in 2014 – a rise of 19% on 2013. 

Stop texting and start Gliding.  Read more about the instant video messenger from Israel’s Glide and watch this demo of how easy and practical it is to use.

Israeli technology for Norwegian desalination.  (TY Michelle) Norwegian company, EnviroNor, is recruiting Israeli expertise to provide the water-processing technology necessary for its project to convert secondhand oil barges into floating desalination and wastewater treatment plants.

Security for water.  Jerusalem’s regional water & wastewater utility, Hagihon, has placed itself at the forefront of the cyber protection arena with a breakthrough project.  Even if an employee does something unauthorized, like using an unrecognized USB flash drive, the system will send out an alert.

Restoring Beer Sheva’s river.  (TY Roberta) Untreated wastewater from Palestinian Arab towns has been polluting the Besor-Hebron-Be’er Sheva River for decades, thanks to international water laws.  Now a 3-year project has been agreed between Israel, the PA and the Bedouin community to clean up the river.

How Israel solved its water crisis.  (TY Michelle) An excellent short article describing how, faced with severe drought and a full-blown water crisis, Israel made itself self-reliant by investing $4 billion between 2002 and 2010 to develop water technology that keeps its population and industries alive.  And the innovations continue.

Korea learns Israeli pest control.  South Korea’s Minister of Agriculture, Lee Dong-Phil visited Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu's "BioBee" factory to learn about natural solutions to the global decrease in the wild bee population. BioBee is one of the global leaders in biological pest management, natural pollination and Medfly control.

U.K.-Israel science partnership is booming.  Sir Mark Walport - chief scientific adviser to the British Government - says that Israel and the UK are scientific superpowers, working together on neuroscience, stem cells, nanoscience and water science. In 2015, hundreds of Israeli researchers will work in U.K. universities.

Weeding with technology.  Israeli biotech Evogene is using its PointHit platform to analyze molecules in weeds and identify key plant macro-molecules responsible for essential biological processes in weeds. By targeting those processes, herbicides can be developed that will be more effective in killing weeds.


Exporting Israel’s Venture Capital success.  (TY Michelle) Israel’s financial ecosystem took off in 1993 thanks to the venture capital firm Yozma and its founder Yigal Erlich, Chief Scientist of Israel’s Ministry of Industry and Trade with a US$100 million Government investment.  Yozma is now expanding into Asia.

The most shared website on Facebook.  (TY Michelle) Israel’s PlayBuzz has raised $16 million to expand its quiz games, lists and poll website internationally.  Founded by Shaul Omert (son of an ex-Israeli PM) Playbuzz has grown to more than 80 million unique users, with more than half of its traffic coming from Facebook.

Keeping worthwhile businesses going. (TY Michelle) Israeli startup FundBox lends money to small businesses who are struggling with their cash flow.  After uploading a company’s invoices and checking for fraud, Fundbox pays the company now, instead of it having to wait 60 or 90 days for the purchaser’s money.

Israel exports salt to Russia.  Israel’s Salt of the Earth has reported significant sales growth in the Russian salt market in 2014. The company also expects to double salt exports to Russia in 2015.  Salt of the Earth supplies high-quality sea salt to tuna and salmon processing plants in Russia’s Vladivostok and Korsakov regions.


From Toledo to Jerusalem.  (TY Rafi) A 22-minute history (with music) of the Sefardi Jews told by Yehoram Gaon, considered one of the best Israeli singers.

The official app for Chelsea soccer fans. Israeli-developed sports info app InPlay announced that it would work with UK football club Chelsea to customize content and communities for fans, helping them to engage and access more information about their team.


Copenhagen Bat Mitzvah girl celebrates in Israel.  Hannah Bentow celebrated a second Bat Mitzvah in Jerusalem, exactly a month after her Bat Mitzvah celebrations were tragically cut short by a terror attack outside the Copenhagen synagogue.  Hannah’s mother said, “Here, in Israel, we had a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Hanna's Bat Mitzvah in a different environment, which is much more relaxed and safe.”

1200 attend Aliya event in NYC.  More than 1,200 people flocked to the Crowne Plaza Times Square for aliyah-related seminars and workshops. They received professional advice from shippers, accountants, financial planners, insurance, healthcare, real estate, universities and more.


In the 15th Mar 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·         An Israeli-developed Nitric Oxide treatment can treat cystic fibrosis.
·         EU envoys visiting Gaza have praised Israel’s humanitarian efforts.
·         Israel’s Fansino won “Best App of the Year” at the Mobile World Congress.
·         An Israeli company is to build North America’s largest automatic parking system.
·         Israeli technology will connect rural Peru to broadband Internet.
·         14 outstanding Israelis will light Israel’s Independence Day torches.

·         Last week’s JPost Israel Good News Special Feature.  Click here for “What do Palestinian Arabs need Israel for?” (fast-loading, no adverts).  Also on IsraelSeen, San Diego Jewish World and United with Israel.

·         Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, Janglo, and United With Israel with focus on medical, tech, culture and business.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.  Thank You Michelle again for the links to many exciting news stories.


Treatment for cystic fibrosis.  Israel’s Advanced Inhalation Therapies has been granted Orphan status by the US FDA to complete the development of its nitric oxide (NO) treatment for cystic fibrosis.  The NO gas boosts the body’s immune system, improves blood flow and circulation and kills bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi.

Stem cell treatment fights radiation sickness.  Stem cells from Israel’s Pluristem have been used in clinical tests to successfully treat bone marrow failure following total body exposure to high doses of radiation.

Treatments in Silicon can target cancer.  Scientists at Israel’s Technion together with MIT and Harvard have discovered that chemotherapeutics, delivered in tiny silicon containers with nano-sized holes are able to destroy malignant tumors, whilst avoiding adverse effects on healthy tissue.

Brain neurons study can help fight Alzheimer’s. Tel Aviv University researchers discovered that neural networks in the brain preserve memories better than individual neurons. This new understanding may lead to a breakthrough in treating debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

Pill balloon to control your appetite.  Israel biomed company Tulip Medical has successfully completed its first clinical trial of its pill that expands in the stomach, inflates like a balloon, and creates a sense of fullness.  The pill was safe with no side effects.  The next trial will test the pill in an inclusive weight-loss program.


Triplets in Uniform.  May, Chen and Shir maybe triplets, but Shir was born brain-damaged.  19 years later, May and Chen joined the IDF. Thanks to the JNF-supported Yad Layeled Hameyuchad's "Special in Uniform" program, which integrates young people with disabilities into the IDF, Shir wasn’t left out.

The vital work of autistic volunteers.  Interpreting satellite images from Israel’s satellites requires long hours of concentration and constant attention to detail.  Volunteers with autism provide a “win-win” situation for those who previously faced a bleak future.

Arab chairman of Israeli elections.  Only in Israel could an Israeli-Arab be the Chairman of the Election Committee.  (Video credit to Sharon Altshul - www.rjstreets.com)

Arabs and Jews study space science together.  The Moona outer space research center in the Israel-Arab town of Majd Al-Kurum has attracted about 50 Jewish and 50 Muslim high school students. They attend courses in robotics, drones, 3D printing, electronics and other technologies related to outer-space exploration.

The Israeli-Arab at the top of Apple.  This article about Apple CEO Tim Cook’s visit to Israel focuses in on Israeli-Arab Johny Srouji, Apple’s vice president for hardware technology.

EU praises Israel’s work for Gaza.  European representatives praised Israel's actions over the past few months to promote reconstruction in Gaza and ease the humanitarian crisis in the Strip. They complimented Israel's cooperation with the UN, Israel's doubling of the water supply to Gaza and the ease on export restrictions from the Gaza Strip to Israel, the West Bank and abroad.

Syrian boy fitted with prosthesis.  A 13-year-old Syrian boy who was seriously injured by a mortar in the Quneitra region three months ago as a result of the ongoing civil war in Syria was brought to Israel for surgery and fitted with a prosthetic leg that will allow him to walk again.

Israeli-Australian sustainability course.  Israel’s Ben Gurion University and Australia’s Monash University have established the Monash Ben-Gurion Seed Fund to support joint research and education programs in the areas of Sustainability, Social Inclusion and Entrepreneurship.

Royal visit to Israeli aid workers.  (TY Hazel) Prince William met relief staff from the Israeli humanitarian group IsraAID while he was in Japan recently, visiting areas hit by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.


Best App at Mobile World Congress.  Israelis Haran Wolfovitz Yaffe and Omri Erez, developers of the app Fansino, won the 2015 Mobile Premier Awards “Best App of the Year” at Spain’s Mobile World Congress, the largest cross-platform app showcase in the mobile industry and attended by around 70,000 people.

Israeli Innovation in San Diego.  The Cal-Israel Innovation Expo beginning 8th May in San Diego will showcase Israeli technologies and advance opportunities for students with internships, scholarships and jobs.

Israeli sensors for Intel 3D system.  Intel has chosen Israel’s Tower Semiconductor to provide the infrared sensor for one of its new 3D imaging solutions.  Tower’s unique sensor is a 3.5um global shutter very fast pixel that allows high quantum efficiency at near infrared light.

Water technology for Kenya.  Kenya’s Governor of Embu County received a delegation of Israelis who will introduce technology to revolutionize agriculture in the arid parts of Embu which have fertile soils.

A radical new catalyst.  Technion scientists have developed the alpha hydrogen nitroxyl radical – a new stable class of chemical that encourages other chemicals to react together without being affected itself.  This has major implications for chemical and medical industries including plastics, agriculture, biochemistry and antibiotics.

Singapore and Israel do tech together.  (TY Israel21c) Since 1997, 140 joint Israeli-Singaporean industrial R&D projects have been supported and facilitated through the Singapore-Israel Industrial R&D Foundation (SIIRD) - a product of Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist and Singapore’s Economic Development Board.

Building the largest automatic parking lot.  Israel’s Unitronics Systems has won a $24 million contract to build a robot-operated parking system for one of the world's leading hotel chains.  With 1,400 parking places, it will be North America’s largest automatic parking system. It can park 3 cars in a single conventional space.

Israeli technology for electric cars.  The Advanced Driver Assistance Systems developed by Bar-Ilan's Professor Eli Kolberg, will be integrated into the US electric cars built by Electric Vehicle Evolution (EVE).  The systems will reduce risk of collisions, provide vital data and are a step closer to autonomous vehicles.

BGU research with Arizona Uni.  Ben Gurion University and Arizona State University have signed a joint research agreement.  The two universities will cooperate in Cyber security, Homeland security, Nanotechnology, Robotics, Community medicine, Space and remote sensing and Sustainability.

PayPal to start Israeli tech hub. (TY Michelle) Internet payments giant PayPal has bought Israel’s CyActive to kick-start a larger cyber security hub in the country, including potentially more acquisitions.  CyActive’s “biology-inspired” algorithm predicts and counters cyber-attacks.  PayPal bought Israel’s FraudSciences in 2008.  http://techcrunch.com/2015/03/10/paypal-confirms-acquisition-of-cyactive-plans-to-open-new-security-hub-in-israel/  https://www.paypal-community.com/t5/PayPal-Forward/PayPal-Establishes-New-Security-Center/ba-p/956298


Stay at an Israeli hotel – in London.  Israel's Fattal Hotels Ltd. is opening its first UK hotel. The company has leased the Holiday Inn Heathrow Airport in London for 25 years and it will open on March 16 as part of Fattal's Leonardo hotel chain.  Fattal is in talks to open more hotels in the UK.

Connecting rural Peru to broadband.  Israel’s Gilat Satellite Networks has won a $286 million contract for telecommunications infrastructure in Peru.  Gilat will connect the remote rural regions of Huancavelica, Ayacucho and Apurimac, including about 600 public institutions, to broadband services.

Israeli innovation comes to B.C.  The Vancouver Israeli Tech Club (ITC) is connecting British Columbia’s technology sector to its Israeli counterpart.  Over 200 entrepreneurs, business leaders, researchers, trade officers, investors and officials from Israel and B.C. attended an ITC conference at Simon Fraser University. http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Opinion+Israeli+innovation+comes+British+Columbia/10855274/story.html

Turning the Internet into a language course.  (TY Michelle) I reported about Israel’s Lingua.ly in 2013 when it launched its desktop software that provides students with suitable Internet articles in the language they are studying.  Lingua.ly launched its Android smartphone app in April and has now raised $1 million of funding.

Quiet trade with Indonesia.  (TY Michelle) Although Indonesia is the largest Muslim country and has no official diplomatic relations, annual trade with Israel is around $400-500 million, almost 88 percent of which is Indonesian exports. Indonesia exports commodities to Israel while Israel sends back mostly high-tech products.


Michael Douglas wins Genesis Prize. (TY Size Doesn’t Matter) US actor Michael Douglas is returning to Israel in June to receive the 2015 Genesis Prize, for his contribution to contemporary Jewish culture.  Douglas said that he will donate his prize money to projects that promote inclusiveness in the Jewish community.

Israeli wins Euro triple jump medal.  Hanna Knyazyeva-Minenko became the first Israeli woman to win a medal at the European Indoor Championships on Sunday, finishing the triple jump final in third place with a new national record of 14.49 meters.  Her next target is August’s World Championships in Beijing, China.


Israel honors groundbreaking Israelis.  (TY Hazel) Fourteen outstanding Israelis have been chosen to light the ceremonial torches at Israel's official Independence Day ceremony at the Mount Herzl national cemetery in Jerusalem.  They include hi-tech developers, entrepreneurs, top women achievers and aid workers.  One of them, Lucy Aharish, is the first Hebrew-speaking Arab anchor on Israeli television.

Hundreds attend Jerusalem Aliya fair.  Nearly 1000 young French Masa participants gathered at the Jerusalem Theater to learn about their options if they make Aliya.  Most Masa students emigrate. In France, the Jewish Agency holds two information seminars a day, whereas a year ago it held only one a month. 


In the 8th Mar 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Innovative Israeli chemotherapy can treat ovarian and brain tumors.

·        Disabled kids will use Israeli-developed harnesses to “run” the Jerusalem marathon.
·        An Israeli industrial battery has no chemicals and can be recharged unlimitedly.
·        The River Jordan will be much cleaner with the opening of a new wastewater plant.
·        Technology from Jerusalem’s Hebrew University launched 9 new companies last year.
·        See how the festival of Purim was celebrated in the Jewish State.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “Far Out Miracles From Israel” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on Jerusalem Post, San Diego Jewish World and United with Israel.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, Israel News Zone, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, IsraPundit, Janglo, and United With Israel, featuring medical and global impact.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.  Thank You Michelle for many of the links.


Ovarian cancer treatment works for brain tumors too.  I reported in Mar 2014 that Professor Dan Peer of Tel Aviv University had developed chemotherapy using nano-particles to target ovarian tumors.  It has now been engineered to target Glioblastoma multiforme - the most aggressive of brain cancer.

Israeli snack prevents peanut allergy.  Long ago, UK Professor Gideon Lack discovered that hardly any Israeli infants developed peanut allergy.  Now his new study has proved that the reason is the common practice of feeding Israeli children the peanut snack Bamba.  It reverses conventional “wisdom” of avoiding peanuts.

Helping premature babies to hear.  Without mentioning he is Israeli, the BBC World Service featured Dr Amir Lahav who has proved that the sound centers in preemies’ brains grow quicker when played recordings of their mothers’ voice.  So follow Dr Lahav’s fascinating journey from the IDF, to volleyball coach, to musician, software designer, neuroscientist and Harvard pediatric professor.

Israelis are among the world’s healthiest eaters.  A new study in February’s The Lancet Global Health Journal places the diet of the average Israeli the 9th healthiest out of 187 countries surveyed.  The study, led by Dr Fumiaki Imamura of the University of Cambridge, covered 4.5 billion people.

Understanding irregular heartbeats.  Researchers at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have revealed the detailed mechanisms that control the beating of the heart.  Heart disease can cause individual heart filaments to lose synchronization.  Replacing diseased cells in a structured manner can re-establish a regular rhythm.

Microlabs in space.  (TY Michelle) Israeli innovations in space include SpacePharma’s laboratory that fits in the palm of your hand and will orbit in a nano-satellite, allowing scientists to conduct experiments and watch them happen on their smart phones.

Boost for ALS and diabetes treatment.  Israel’s Kadimastem’s recent news includes success in pre-clinical tests of its stem cell treatment for ALS.  The technology also induces pancreatic cells to produce insulin and Kadimastem has begun research with Ramot, Tel Aviv University’s technology transfer company.


Israeli maternity hotels.  Hospitals across Israel have opened top-notch maternity hotels to help new mums and babies rest and recuperate after the birth.

Disabled kids train for Jerusalem marathon.  20 dedicated Jerusalem police officers are helping residents of ALEH to train for the Jerusalem marathon on 13 March. ALEH provides comprehensive care to children and young adults with severe impairments.  Some will be using the Israeli-developed Upsee mobility harness.

How a Catholic Filipino became an IDF soldier.  Aaron comes from a Catholic family, originally from the Philippines.  He was born and raised in Herzliya and knew from a very young age that he wanted to take part in defending the country.  He has just completed advanced IDF training in the Nahal Brigade.

Coexistence through "the beautiful game".  Jews, Circassians, Muslim and Christian Arabs all play together at the Maccabi Haifa-Nahalal youth football academy in Northern Israel’s Jezreel Valley.  The soccer squad consists of 13 year-old players, from city and countryside.  One team with one aim - to enjoy the game.

Mohammed Zoabi completes IDF prep program.  Mohammed Zoabi, cousin of anti-Israel MK Hanin Zoabi, has just completed Gadna, a program that gives Israeli high school students a basic introduction to the IDF. “Today I feel proud. Proud to be Israeli, proud to be an Israeli Muslim joining the army in less than two years.”

Palestinian Arab earnings.  A survey conducted by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, funded by the European Union, shows that Palestinian Arabs who work in Israel or Israeli settlements are paid more than double the wage of those employed by the Palestinian Authority and triple those working in Gaza.

Doubling Gaza’s water supply.  Israel is to increase water supplies from 1.3 to 2.6 billion gallons to help ease the ongoing water crisis in Gaza. 

Training Indian farmers.  (TY Michelle) Details of some of the 30 agricultural centers of excellence that Israel is in the process of opening in India.  http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/israel-plans-to-set-up-30-centres-of-excellence-in-india-to-train-farmers/article6923728.ece 


Unlimited recharging.  Israel’s Chakratec develops kinetic batteries with a mechanical flywheel to provide smart storage with unlimited charge/discharge cycles and no polluting chemicals.  Chakratec has just won Ben-Gurion University’s Clean Technology Business Plan Competition.  http://www.chakratec.com/

The State’s highest honors.  The Israel Prize in Life Sciences Research went to Weizmann’s Professor Zelig Eshhar for his breakthrough approach to treating diseases, particularly cancer.  Another Weizmann Professor, Shimon Ullman won the Mathematics and Computer Science Research prize for his artificial intelligence work.

The coolest startup office in Israel.  Take a tour round the office of Israeli video messaging startup Glide, located at the Jerusalem Technology Park.

Apple seeks Israeli chip technology.  (TY Michelle) The Wall St Journal reports that Apple is advertising in Israel for silicon and semiconductor design and testing engineers.  It also notes that Johny Srouji, Apple’s Vice President of hardware technologies, is an Israeli Arab from Haifa.

The smartwatch designed by Israelis.  No Camels has revealed that two Israelis are responsible for designing the latest generation of Pebble Time smartwatches.  Itai Vonshak is head of product and UX and Liron Damir is head of design. The company has raised over $14 million in just six days on Kickstarter – a new record.

US grant for Israeli agriculture research.  Aiming to boost crop yields of plants like chickpeas and soybeans, the Hebrew University’s Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment has been awarded a $789,000 grant from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Building microchip tools with New York.  (TY Michelle) The State University of New York is partnering with Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist to develop critical tools for the semiconductor industry.

New joint Italian-Israeli science labs.  Italy and Israel have established a neurology and brain laboratory in Tel Aviv, a solar laboratory in Sde Boker, a health sciences laboratory at Ben Gurion University, and a physics and magnetism laboratory at the Weizman Institute. A joint outer space laboratory has also been founded.

Turn your smartphone into a tricorder.  (TY Michelle) The optical filters developed by Israel’s Unispectral can identify an object’s hyperspectral signature – its unique chemical fingerprint.  Applied to a smartphone camera, the data can be used to determine the object’s chemical components.  Like a Star-Trek tricorder.

Wastewater plant refreshes River Jordan.  Israel’s Water Authority has opened a new treatment facility for wastewater from the city of Tiberias.  The NIS 120 million-shekel project brings an end to a situation in which raw sewage flow was endangering the vitality of the Jordan River.

Saving Australia’s water. (TY Michelle) I featured Israel’s TaKaDu in January.  Here is a more detailed report about the billions of liters of water that TaKaDu’s unique leaks and faults detection technology is saving in Australia’s parched states.

Grow more, water less.  Israel’s CropX has developed an advanced adaptive irrigation software service, increasing crop yields whilst saving up to 25% of the water and energy used in irrigation of large fields.  Three sensors placed in the ground send readings into the Cloud and CropX determines where to irrigate.


Israeli economy is stable.  International credit rating agency Standard & Poor's affirmed its 'A+/A-1' long- and short-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings on the State of Israel, with a stable outlook.  The forthcoming elections are not expected to undermine prudent public finances and government debt control.

Tel Aviv – the world’s 3rd best tech city.  Tel Aviv is the third best place in the world for technology business, according to a new report by property consultants Savills. The scores were measured according to five metrics: business environment, tech environment, quality of life, talent pool and property affordability. 

Trade with China.  (TY Michelle) Israeli exports to China have risen from $1 billion in 2010 to over $3 billion last year.  Half are electronic components, chemicals, or medical products.  But the biggest rise was IT services.

And with Japan.  (TY Michelle) In 2014, trade between Japan and Israel rose by 9.3% to $1.75 billion and there has been a recent surge in Japanese investments in Israel in a variety of hi-tech fields.  (Writer Ohad Cohen heads Israel’s foreign commercial service, with 40 trade offices operating in more than 50 countries.)

Talk Talk partners with LivePerson.  UK telecom giant Talk Talk has selected LiveEngage from Israel’s LivePerson to deliver its new chat service for customers requiring fast, on-line, real-time assistance.

Meerkat – a side project that took off.  (TY Michelle) The Wall St Journal features a story about an Israeli startup that switched its main product when its co-founder built a new mobile application in eight weeks.

Hebrew U launches 9 companies.  Yissum, the technology transfer company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, founded nine new companies in 2014 on the basis of technology originating at the university.

Israel had most UK IPOs in 2014.  (TY Atid-EDI) More Israeli companies had new listings on the London Stock Exchange in 2014 than from any country outside of the UK itself.  Two (Matomy Media and Barak Capital) floated on the main market and seven more on the AIM secondary market.


Holon Women’s festival.  This year’s Woman’s Festival in Holon begins on International Woman’s Day – March 8.  2015 is also the 75th anniversary of the founding of Holon, so the festival program takes in 75 different slots across all kinds of fields of interest and the arts.

Indonesian pianist prodigy visits Israel.  11-year-old jazz pianist Joey Alexander performed at the Red Sea Jazz festival in Eilat.  A Christian native of Moslem Indonesia, which has no diplomatic relations with the Jewish State, Joey managed to obtain the three visas necessary to enter Israel.

New Biblical zoo.  One of its goals of the Biblical Museum of Natural History in Beit Shemesh is to bring Jews back in touch with biblical wildlife, such as lions, leopards, bears, vultures, crocodiles, and hippos.  “Be bold as a leopard, light as an eagle, swift as a deer, and strong as a lion to do the will of your Father in Heaven.”


“Israel is Good.”  Governor Mike Huckabee knows the difference between good and evil.  Please watch his speech at United With Israel’s event to celebrate 3 million supporters.  (This newsletter editor appears in the video clip at exactly 1 minute, holding his trusty PC-Notebook.)

They may not be who they say they are.  As Israelis prepared costumes to celebrate the Jewish festival of Purim, children at one Israeli school produced a fancy-dressed message to publicize Safe Internet Week.

Purim in Israel.  I hope you enjoy these scenes of the festival of Purim being celebrated all over Israel.


In the 1st Mar 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli scientists have isolated a safe virus that eliminates antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

·        Nigeria has praised Israel for helping it counter Boko Haram.

·        Lufthansa are using Israeli-developed Taxibots to tow their aircraft and save fuel.

·        Israel and Jordan have signed an historic water agreement.
·        Israel’s IronSource is now a billion-dollar company.
·        An amazing video showing Jerusalem’s mayor apprehending a terrorist.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “Israel Educates for Life” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on Jerusalem Post, IsraelSeen, San Diego Jewish World and United With Israel.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, Israel News Zone, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, IsraPundit, Janglo, and United With Israel (featuring medicine, technology, culture and global impact).

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


A virus that kills resistant bacteria infections.  Researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have isolated (from Jerusalem sewage) a “safe” virus EFDG1, which can kill the bacteria infections associated with up to 33% of root canal treatments.  EFDG1 eradicates even antibiotic-resistant strains of the bacteria.

BrainTech 2015.  The international conference BrainTech 2015 in Tel Aviv, beginning 11th March, features neuroscientists, entrepreneurs, senior executives, investors, startups and decision-makers who will explore challenges, discover promising projects, create partnerships and accelerate innovation in brain technology.

Monitoring mental illness by smartphone.  Israel’s LifeGraph has developed a smartphone-based platform for monitoring mental illness.  LifeGraph detects changes in a patient’s sleep, social communication, mobility and speech. It provides psychiatrists with innovative insight into the behavioral patterns of the patient.

The nose-to-brain express route.  A major problem in treating mental illness is in overcoming the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) with effective medication.  Israel’s SipNose has developed an innovative nasal delivery device platform that can penetrate the BBB and provide fast, non-invasive treatment to patients.

Opening up the inner workings of the brain.  As Tel Aviv prepares to host the 2015 BrainTech conference, Professor Henry Markram (formerly of Israel’s Weizmann Institute) outlined the goals and activities of the Human Brain Project, of which he is co-director.

Fooling the malaria parasite.  Back in Dec 2012 I reported how Dr Ron Dzikowski at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem had discovered the genetic reason why malaria was so difficult to treat.  Now Professor Dzikowski and other HUJ scientists have used the discovery to disrupt the parasite’s defense mechanism.


Making nature accessible.  During Jewish Disability Awareness Month, please read this special blog by Raz Rutman about accessible hiking trails in Israel.  Raz, a wheelchair user since age eight, is doing his national service with the non-profit LOTEM, dedicated to making Israeli nature accessible to people with special needs.

Safer Internet for kids.  On Feb 8, the Ministry of Education launched the Annual National Week for Online Safety Education in Israel.  Throughout the state educational system, students engaged in classroom and online activities to increase Internet safety awareness, reduce potential risks, and deal with harmful online incidents. 

Israel moves water pumps into Gaza.  Israeli authorities helped alleviate flooding in Gaza from recent rains by transferring four pumps from the Palestinian Authority into the Gaza Strip.  (Contrary to AFP fake report)

Israeli aid for Iraqi children.  Israeli aid organization IsraAid has been helping Kurdish, Yazidi and Christian refugees in northern Iraq who have escaped Islamic State rule.  IsraAid founding director Shachar Zahavi said the goal now was to help provide a schooling framework for the children.

Last chance for Iraqi infant.  This heart-wrenching story describes how Iraqi Christian refugees, escaping from IS, finally reached Israel where their baby daughter Maryam can be treated for her hole in the heart.

Hispanic media tour Israel.  Top U.S. Latino Media and Entertainment leaders have been visiting Israel in a pioneering initiative to explore joint ventures, scout location sites, and share best practices with their Israeli counterparts.

Israeli help is crucial for Nigeria.  A Nigerian government spokesman has stated that Israel has been a crucial and loyal ally in the fight against the radical Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram.  He said that Nigeria’s Israeli partners have used their experience fighting terrorism to provide Nigeria with the required training and support.

Countering cyber threats in Azerbaijan.  (TY Michelle) Israel is helping the government of Azerbaijan defend itself against a growing number of cyber security attacks. 

Helping Canada release its ‘entrepreneurial genie’.  (TY Michelle) Canada’s universities recently convened a meeting of innovation leaders from Israel, Germany and Canada to share insights into their respective national innovation systems, with an eye to strengthening the Canadian system.

The “Israel-Ukraine Tech Bridge”.  (TY Michelle) Despite its current problems, the Ukraine wants to become a Startup Nation like Israel.  A new joint program, entitled “Israel-Ukraine Tech Bridge,” has started with a series of conferences offered in Kyiv (Kiev) by top representatives of the Israeli tech community.

Rwanda strengthens ties with Israel.  (TY Michelle) East African nation Rwanda's ICT Chamber announced that it has selected Israel to strengthen business ties and study best practices in business, innovation, workforce development and promote investment. Israel was Rwanda’s “country of choice”.

Uni votes to invest in Israel.  Yes it’s not a misprint.  “Invest”, not “divest”.  The Student Government Association of the University of Georgia on Tuesday passed the first college resolution this year calling for the school to invest more in its relations with Israel. It is the third such resolution ever to be passed.

Academic conference to take place in Tel Aviv.  The 21st Association of Young Legal Historians is to be held in Tel Aviv, beginning 1st Mar - the first time in 20 years that the conference will convene outside Europe.

Kosovo seeks Israeli recognition.  Kosovo’s former foreign minister Enver Hoxhaj, speaking at the Israel Council on Foreign Relations, said that the rise of the State of Israel was seen as a model for Kosovo in its struggle for independence and expressed admiration for the achievements of the Jewish state.


The future of long-distance relationships.  The latest youtube from Israel’s Glide shows how their video messaging technology can really enhance the lives that people share together – even when they are apart.

Natural remedies for pests.  Israel’s Bio-Bee plant in Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu, Israel, is leading the operation to eradicate Israel’s infestation by the Asian palm weevil.  Bio-Bee is importing 42 billion harmless nematode worms from Germany, which kill the weevil’s larvae.  It is also using special odor traps from Spain.

Safe filtration technology.  The National Sanitation Foundation International (NSF) has certified the major product lines of Israel’s Amiad Water Systems.  NSF evaluated that the water produced by Amiad’s automatic self-cleaning screen and microfibre technology is safe for human consumption across the USA and Canada.

Technology to rehabilitate at home. Israel’s Meditouch manufactures innovative physical therapy solutions for hospital, primary and home care use.  Meditouch’s wearable movement biofeedback devices and dedicated rehabilitation software are used in clinic and at home to motivate patients to exercise and improve movement.  The system has been adopted by the Kennedy Krieger Rehabilitation hospital in Baltimore.

TaxiBot starts towing Lufthansa jets.  Lufthansa has commenced operations with the Taxibot towing system developed by Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd.  Lufthansa said that TaxiBot could save up to 2,700 tonnes of fuel at Frankfurt Airport per year, plus reduce noise and exhaust emissions.

Israeli technology for UK sport.  (TY Hazel) Future Israel - an initiative of Israel's Economic & Trade Mission to the UK - is bringing over a group of 20 Israeli companies with solutions and technologies for the British sporting establishments including broadcasters, arenas and sports clubs. 

Touchfree smartphone wins $1million prize.  (TY Michelle) A disabled individual can operate the Israeli-developed Sesame Enable smartphone simply by moving their head.  The smartphone has just won the $1 million top prize in the Education category of the Verizone Powerful Answers Award.

Building starts on Med Sea research labs.  Haifa University and the Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research Institute laid the cornerstone of the new deep-sea research labs for Haifa’s Mediterranean Sea Research Center.  The lab will develop underwater robots, vehicles, optics, acoustics and propulsion systems.

Talking the same language.  (TY Michelle) The new Empath app from Israeli startup Beyond Verbal recognizes human moods, attitudes and emotional characteristics from human voice intonations in real-time. Beyond Verbal has registered 18 scientific discoveries and a battery of patents for enabling machines to recognize human emotions.

Saving the Dead Sea.  Israel and Jordan have signed an historic agreement to implement the Red Sea-Dead Sea rescue pipeline project.  The $800 million agreement authorizes the construction of a 65 to 80 million cubic meter capacity desalination plant in Aqaba, Jordan that will produce fresh water to benefit both nations.

Don’t waste a second to launch your apps.  Israel’s Impris has launched “Super Launcher for Android”.  Now you can open your favorite smartphone apps without even looking at the screen.


Unemployment down to 5.6%.  The percentage of unemployed Israelis aged 15 and over in the workforce fell to 5.6% in January, from 5.7% in December.  The unemployed rate between ages 25-64 fell to 4.8% in a growing workforce.  More people are now employed in full time jobs.

Lighting up NASDAQ.  (TY Michelle) SolarEdge, founded by five veterans of the IDF 8200 Intelligence Corps, has applied for a NASDAQ listing that will value the company at around $500 million.  SolarEdge’s technology maximizes the energy collected by solar panels and has been installed in 73 countries.

Startup investing for the public.  Israeli startup Exit Valley has launched a “crowdfunding” investment platform.  It allows private individuals to invest as little as NIS 1000 in a startup company.  If the startup fails to reach its target funding within a fixed time period, all monies are returned to the individuals.

India’s matchmaking with Israeli businesses.  (TY Michelle) The purchase of Israel’s Panaya by India’s Infosys is just the beginning.  When Israeli startups engage with Indian companies it gives cutting-edge technology for Indian companies and wider market access for products developed by Israeli firms. So it’s a win-win situation.  http://www.deccanherald.com/content/461679/israel-focus-big-plank-panaya.html

Another billion-dollar Israeli company.  (TY Michelle) After only 5 years, Israeli startup IronSource’s latest round of funding values the app delivery company at over $1billion.  Every day IronSource’s software installs over 7 million applications onto desktops and mobiles.

Apple’s boss comes to Israel.  Apple’s CEO Tim Cook opened Apple’s new offices in Herzliya.  He also met Israeli President Reuven Rivlin.  Alongside Cook for the trip was Johny Srugi, Apple’s Vice President of Hardware Technologies - a graduate of Technion, Israel’s Institute of Technology.

Learn the secret of Israeli success.  (TY Michelle) The Israeli business school Lahav Executive Education is part of the Recanati Business School at Tel Aviv University.  Lahav offers its international students some of “the secrets behind ‘Jewish genius’ and Israeli success” as a pre-eminent “start-up nation”.


Look down to see 3000 years of history.  The Kishle building adjacent to Jerusalem’s Tower of David shows a unique timeline. Its excavation reveals a treasure trove - layer upon layer of history, back to the First Temple.

Jerusalem’s market swings at night.  (TY Size Doesn’t Matter) One night every year in mid-winter, Machane Yehuda, Jerusalem’s main outdoor market, changes its face. The lanes fill up with diverse crowds: fun-seekers and cultural mavens who take the regular shoppers by surprise.

Gregory Porter to perform in Israel.  Gregory Porter, winner of the 2014 Grammy for the best vocal jazz album - Liquid Spirit, makes his Israeli debut in March. Porter is a unique jazz singer who tells stories with his caressing baritone voice and presents an evening of jazz, soul and blues.

European Chess Championship has a stunning opening.  248 international chess stars from 33 countries, including 112 grandmasters, enjoyed “the best opening ever” of the 2015 European Chess Championship in Jerusalem.  Mind reading magic acts and percussion performances replaced the normal boring speeches.


Jerusalem’s Shemitta Park: An Experience in Jewish Values. (TY Ilene) In Israel, every 7th year is “Shemitta” when the land “rests” and its population becomes more spiritual.  Religious leaders, politicians, soldiers and children discovered more at Jerusalem’s Botanical Gardens newest attraction – its Shemitta Park. 

Israel’s “gold coast”.  Scuba divers have discovered the largest trove of gold coins ever found off Israel's Mediterranean coast.  Members of a diving club in Caesarea uncovered nearly 2000 gold pieces dating back more than 1000 years.  The Israeli Antiquities Authority said the find was "so valuable that it's priceless".

Jerusalem mayor tackles terrorism – personally.  Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barkat stopped a terrorist, who had seconds earlier committed a stabbing in Tzahal Square.  Barkat - an ex IDF paratrooper - saw the incident, got out of his car and when his bodyguard convinced the attacker to drop his knife, Barkat wrestled him to the ground.  http://www.timesofisrael.com/watch-jerusalem-mayor-pins-down-terrorist/


In the 22nd Feb 2015 week’s edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        An award-winning Israeli website provides individually tailored medical advice.
·        The BBC praises an Israeli surgeon’s reconstruction of an injured Syrian’s face.
·        Israel is producing vast quantities of desalinated water at the lowest cost in the world.
·        10% of all Israeli high-school children attend a Sci-Tech school.
·        Israel’s economy experienced a huge boost in the final quarter of 2014.
·        An Israeli terror victim has married the hospital visitor who helped him recover.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary. 
Click here for “A Green and Pleasant Land" (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on Jerusalem Post and San Diego Jewish World.
·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, Janglo, and United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.  My thanks to Michelle for the links to more than a dozen of the articles - highlighted by “(M)” below.


Winning medical advice.  (Israel21c)  Israeli startup Medivizor uses patent-pending technology to find the most essential information applicable for each individual’s medical situation.  Medivizor won 4 prestigious competitions in 2014, was highlighted by Forbes and is recommended by doctors to their patients.

A traffic-light pacemaker.  (M) A joint Israeli-UK project is testing whether a pacemaker emitting pulsating blue and yellow light can be used to regulate the beating of newly implanted heart tissue generated by stem cells.  Also interesting because the UK’s Independent newspaper rarely includes any positive Israeli news.

ReWalk makes miracles possible.  (M) Here’s a rare positive Israel article from CNN.  It describes the exoskeleton from Israel’s ReWalk that is changing the lives of paraplegics.  People previously confined to wheelchairs can now walk upright once again.  (Stop video after 2 minutes.)

Turning darkness into light.  (Israel21c) Ben-Gurion University is hosting “Light and Blindness” - a full-day exhibition of research-and-development activities in Israel designed to improve the quality of life for people with visual impairment.  It includes a startup contest and the opening of a trail for the blind.

Boost for ice treatment to destroy tumors.  Israeli biotech IceCure Medical has received $21 million of funds from Epoch Partner Investments to speed up the sales and distribution of its IceSense3 cryoablation system to treat breast cancer.  IceSense3 uses extreme cold to destroy targeted tumors in less than 15 mins, with no pain.

$9 million donation to fight cancer.  Philanthropists Laura and Isaac Perlmutter have pledged $3 million to finance six joint cancer research projects between NY University and Israel’s Technion, plus a further $6 million to establish a state-of-the-art research facility focusing on cancer metabolomics at the Technion.


Taking inclusion to a larger level.  (Thanks to Nevet – www.broaderview.org) A report about two IDF bases where “special” soldiers with disabilities perform important jobs.  IDF service helps integrate the disabled into society and the workforce.  It also educates and changes the attitudes of IDF personnel without disabilities.

Israeli-Arabs flourish at Technion.  (M) As the Bloomberg journalist admits, “Here’s a little-told success story:” Israeli Arabs, women in particular, have made huge strides over the past decade at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, better known as Israel’s answer to MIT.

BBC applauds Israeli op on Syrian’s face.  (Thanks to Eli) The BBC describes the amazing reconstruction work that Israeli surgeon Yoav Leiser of Haifa’s Rambam hospital performed on Mohammad – a Syrian farmer whose face was shattered in an attack by a Syrian warplane.  A rare positive Israel story from the BBC.  Also a report (thanks Michelle) on the $10 million plus spent by Israel in the last 18 months treating 1500 Syrians.

UN-Israeli workshop on renewable energy.  The UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation (MASHAV) organized a workshop to teach successful renewable energy practices and energy efficiency technologies to 23 experts and policymakers from across Eurasia.

Hong Kong students experience Startup Nation.  (M) 50 Hong Kong university and secondary students got the chance to see firsthand the secrets to Israeli entrepreneurial success, thanks to a six-day trip co-organized by the Technion (Israel Institute of Technology) and Li Ka Shing Foundation.


The most efficient desalination plant in the world.  (M) Israel’s new Sorek desalination plant is now at full capacity, producing 627,000 cubic meters of drinking water daily. With the lowest rate of energy consumption in the world, its water is the cheapest of any large-scale desalination plant.

Washington to host US-Israeli cyber security conference.  The Israel Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) will hold its 5th annual Defensive Cyberspace Operations & Intelligence Conference and Exhibition in Washington, DC, April 27-28, 2015. This is the first INSS cyber conference to be held in the US.

Israel establishes Cyber Defense Authority.  Israel’s cabinet has approved the establishment of a national cyber defense authority which will have overall national responsibility for cyber defense.  It will also operate an a Cyber Event Readiness Team to strengthen the resilience of organizations and sectors in the economy.

The importance of technology and education.  (M) Graduates of Israel Technion have won 4 Nobel Prizes and have either founded or are managing two-thirds of the Israeli companies on NASDAQ.  Technion’s President Peretz Lavie describes why Israel’s foremost technical institute has been so successful. 

Israeli Sci-Tech schools.  100,000 Israeli kids - 10 percent of all Israeli high school students (Jews, Muslims, Christians and Druze) - attend a Sci-Tech school.  The Sci-Tech network builds curricula based on the demand for professionals in various Israeli industries, and it currently has 18 industrial vocational schools.

Israeli cleantech in Germany.  Nine Israeli cleantech companies attended Leipzig’s Green Ventures Forum – Germany’s leading B2B platform in the cleantech arena.  Thanks to the Israeli Economic Office in Berlin and Israel NewTech, Israeli companies held over a hundred meetings with companies from over 30 countries.

Technion’s new hi-tech student lab.  Israel’s Technion and Microsoft have together built a development lab that resembles that of a startup company.  Students can develop innovative technologies that will add to the “Internet of Things” – Internet-enabled devices and applications to rival anything a hi-tech company can design.

Your TV interacts with your smartphone.  (M) Israel’s Applicaster lets you watch a program on your TV set whilst interacting with the program and its characters on your smartphone.  Applicaster has released more than 100 mobile apps for 36 broadcasters, including Fox International and Mediacorp.

Israeli technology with every diamond.  (M) If you’ve got a diamond on your finger, there’s an 80% chance it’s been touched by Israel’s Sarine.  (Stop the automatic video sequence at the end of the Sarine clip)


GDP up 7.2%; exports up 7.3%.  Israel's economy expanded at its fastest rate in almost eight years in the fourth quarter, with overall GDP growing an annualized 7.2 percent, following previous estimates of 3.3%.  The recovery was seen in all segments – exports, Government spending, investment and business GDP.

New car deliveries up 23%.  Israeli demand for new cars is a key indicator of economic optimism.  So the 23% rise in deliveries in Jan 2015 compared to Jan 2014 (itself a record month) was significant.  http://www.globes.co.il/en/article-highest-ever-monthly-car-deliveries-1001006986

An all-Israeli cyber takeover.  Israel’s strength in cyber security was evidenced when Israel’s SuperCom acquired Israel’s PreVision.  SuperCom’s NASDAQ share price has risen 1600% in two years.

Aiming to transform London’s banking.  (M) 15 Israeli financial technologies startups will showcase their innovation to UK finance leaders in London on March 2-5.  The 15 won their places in the 2015 TeXchange Fintech challenge, organized by the UK Israel Tech Hub at the British Embassy in Israel.

The Rhode Island – Israel partnership.  (M) Rhode Island has followed the path set by its New England neighbor Massachusetts and developed strong business relationships with the Startup Nation.  Latest joint projects include R-I Hospital with Israel’s Timocco and Crawford HPC with Israel’s Softwheel.

Israeli business leaders open London Stock Exchange.  (M) Sorry - I missed this originally. On 17 Nov 2014 a delegation of CEOs/CFOs from Israeli companies formally opened the day’s trading on the London Stock Exchange.   https://twitter.com/ukinisrael/status/534344480158388224

Infosys to buy Israeli auto-tech company.  (M) India’s giant IT company Infosys is acquiring Israel’s Panaya Inc for $200 million in cash.  Panaya was among the top 100 global tech start-ups in 2009.  It provides automation technology for companies such as Mercedes Benz, Sony and Unilever.

Apple’s new Israeli offices.  (M) Take a look inside Apple’s new offices for its 800 employees in Herzliya.  Apple’s CEO Tim Cook is scheduled to open the offices this week.


Seven species book wins international award.  Chana Bracha Siegelbaum’s book “The Seven Fruits of the Land of Israel” has just received two prestigious Gourmand Awards for 2015.  Chana delves into the mystical and medicinal properties of Israel’s seven Biblical food crops, while also offering pages of wholesome recipes.

Raining chocolates in Tel Aviv.  The 3-day Tel Aviv Chocolate Festival featured chocolate shwarmas and kebabs, to chocolate jewelry, sculptures, chocolate sushi-making and even a chocolate spa. 20,000 attended.

Israeli glass on display.  Tel Aviv’s Eretz Israel Museum is displaying the works of 62 Israeli glass artists.  They range from tiny and intimate objects to large sculptures, from wall hangings to floor and ceiling works, and from room-size installations to conceptual works.

Night-surfing in the Med.  (Thanks to SDM) About 40 Israeli surfers took part in a night-surfing competition in the Mediterranean Sea off Ashdod, southern Israel. Gil Beach is one of the best places to catch waves in Israel and Ashdod set up special lights there for night surfing several years ago.


Bulgaria terror victim weds woman who helped him recover.  Daniel Fahima, was critically wounded in the Burgas, Bulgaria terror attack two years ago, which killed five other Israeli tourists. He has just married the woman who sat by his bedside while he was in the hospital, helping him get through a long period of recovery.

Borrow the book at the bus stop.  A reminder that Israel’s bus stop libraries are still operating and expanding - such as the new library at Emek Refayim in Jerusalem.  Borrowed books can be returned to any branch.

Adversity inspires entrepreneurship.  (Thanks to Israel21c) It was a chance in a million that Tel Aviv married couple Michael and Jessica would both develop Type 1 diabetes after the birth of their first child. They used their “misfortune”, however, to help them found the popular diabetes on-line magazine “ASweetLife”.

Above and Beyond.  “Above and Beyond”, screened at the San Diego Jewish Film Festival, is the story of Israel’s Air Force.  Produced by Nancy Spielberg (sister of Steven), it tells of the miraculous events involving volunteers who risked their lives in order to secure a Jewish homeland.  Highly recommended.

Leading lost Jews to the Promised Land.  A detailed profile of Michael Freund, founder of Shavei Israel - an organization dedicated to returning to Israel, people with a tradition that trace their ancestry to Jews exiled from the Jewish homeland.  http://tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/189072/becoming-moses

The land of blue and white.  The colors of the Israeli flag have been replicated in the recent weather of the Jewish State.  Blue skies earlier in the week turned into dense white clouds, precipitating rain into blue rivers and lakes.  And then white snow enveloped the country from the Golan, to Jerusalem and the Negev desert.


In the 15th Feb 2015 week’s edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli textiles impregnated with nano-particles kill bacteria in hospitals.
·        An Israeli NGO gives trauma counseling to workers treating Ebola victims.
·        An Israeli startup has launched a personal system to grow crops without soil.
·        A new Israeli solar energy plant will generate solar power 20 hours a day.
·        Israel’s NICE Systems and Intel Israel exceeded billion-dollar earnings in 2014.
·        United With Israel celebrates 3 million supporters.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary. 
Click here for “Version 2 of the Startup Nation” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, Israel News Zone, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, IsraPundit, Janglo, and United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Preventing hospital infections.  Another Israeli company is countering the risk of contracting infections in hospital. Nano-Textiles coats hospital textiles (bed linen and clothing) with nano-particles of Zinc and Copper oxides that kill even antibiotic-resistant bacteria.  Nano-Textiles plans to raise $3 million on Wall Street.

More good news for brain tumor patients.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Here is a new report about the TTFields scalp device from Israel’s Novocure that slows the growth of brain tumors.  (Previously reported in Nov 2014).

New devices to diagnose pneumonia.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Two Israeli startups have received Israeli Government grants to develop their products for diagnosing pneumonia.  RespiDX’s Respimometer has sensors to measure breathing.  NanoVation-GS’s stick-on patch has a film with a nano-sensor to measure respiration.

Accurate injections.  Israeli biotech SteadyMed has developed a disposable patch pump delivery system to administer medicines safely and accurately into the body.  SteadyMed plans to raise $55 million on NASDAQ.

Crowdfunding helps solve rare disease mystery.  Crowdfunding - funds from a large number of individuals over the Internet – have enabled researchers at Tel Aviv University to conduct Whole Exome Sequencing and identify the genetic mutation responsible for mental retardation and severe developmental delays in children.

Joint medical research with UK.  The Britain Israel Research and Academic Exchange partnership (BIRAX) has pledged £3.2 million of funding for eight joint stem cell research projects to develop therapies for diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease and Multiple Sclerosis.  UK Prime Minister David Cameron said the research “has the potential to change the lives of hundreds of millions of people.”


Taking care of teens at risk.   (Thanks to Janglo) The organization Crossroads, Jerusalem says it “takes teens off the streets and then puts them back on the street with an entire team behind them”.  The team is running the Jerusalem marathon to raise funds for its Jerusalem center and new programs in Modi’in and Beit Shemesh.

Ethiopian orphan fulfills dream of becoming IDF officer.  Worku Abiy arrived in Israel as an orphan at the age of 15, appearing in the documentary “Take Us Home”.  Exempt from the IDF due to medical issues, he volunteered, and got exceptional basic training scores.  Abiy later applied for and completed an officer’s course.

Ebola Heroes.  Israeli humanitarian organization IsraAID has set-up a program entitled “Ebola Heroes”.  It provides psychosocial training to health workers, teachers, burial teams, policemen, social workers etc., so they can treat Ebola cases, while tackling the devastating effects of fear, trauma, extreme stress and stigma.

Israel hosts international seminar for judges.  A 4-day international seminar for judges took place in Haifa recently.  It focused on the central role of judges in combating human trafficking.  Supporters included the UN, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the International Organization for Migration.


Personal hydroponics.  Growing crops on water used to be only available to big industry.  Now Israel’s Flux has developed a device that lets individuals and small businesses install hydroponics on rooftops, in school gardens, basements and even in restaurants.  Flux’s product was demo’d at Israel’s Cann Tech conference.

5 research projects for joint US-Israeli funding.  The MIT-Israel-BGU Seed Fund recently approved five joint research proposals involving scientists at MIT and at Ben Gurion University of the Negev.  They cover water technology, spinal cord treatment, tomato seeds, online student training and photocurrent spectroscopy.

A new kind of security.  (Thanks to Michelle) Israel’s Team8 is developing novel solutions for the cyber security industry.  Once it generates an idea, it helps launch a startup to build the solution and then moves on.

A truly Green Ride.  Israel’s Green Ride has launched the INU – an electric scooter that makes commuting much easier.  It folds automatically, recognizes its owner and has a range of 40km at speeds up to 25km/hour.

Solar power both day and night.  Tel Aviv-based Brenmiller Energy will establish a 10-megawatt solar power station in Dimona, capable of generating electricity from solar energy for an average of 20 hours a day on a typical summer’s day.  This is four times as many hours than any previous Israeli solar field.

Goggles that enhance reality.  Israeli start-up RideOn has developed augmented reality goggles that superimpose a computer-generated image into the user’s view.  Direct-to-eye display technology positions the transparent display directly over the eye, eliminating the need to look away or refocus in order to read the data.

Speeding up the mobile Internet.  The CODS Mobile Edge Computing platform from Israel’s Saguna Networks increases mobile network speeds while reducing network congestion.  Saguna has just received funds from Akamai Technologies and SoftBank Ventures Korea to help it expand in Asia, North America and Europe.

Developing alternate fuels with Italy.  Through the Israel Fuel Choices Initiative (IFCI), Israel has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), Iveco (a Brand of CNH Industrial) and Magneti Marelli (FCA Group) for co-operation in the development of natural gas based technologies.


Budget surplus.  Israel’s Ministry of Finance announced a 5.3 billion-shekel budget surplus for Jan 2015.  Tax revenues were 2.3% higher than for Jan 2014 and have been growing by 4-5% each month.

Reinforcing the rain in Spain.  A delegation of 11 Israeli water companies visited Spain, presenting technology such as filtering and purification to infrastructure companies.  They impressed one Spanish multinational, Abengoa, which employs 26,000 employees in 80 countries.

Huge demand for Israeli hi-tech jobs.  Impressive success in Israel’s high-tech industry boosted demand for employees by 12% in 2014, compared with 2013.  Salaries of mobile developers rose by 10-30%.

A billion-dollar Israeli company.  2014 earnings for Israel’s NICE Systems reached $1.0124 billion, up from $950 million for the previous year.  NICE specializes in data and voice security and analysis.

Intel Israel exports $4.3b.  Intel Israel's exports totaled $4.25 billion in 2014 (up 10% on 2013) accounting for about 4% of Israel's total exports of goods and services in 2014.  Intel is spending around $800 million upgrading its factories in Kiryat Gat and $1.87 billion per annum in purchases from Israeli suppliers.

Israel Aerospace wins cyber security contracts.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) has won two cyber-security contracts worth tens of millions of dollars.  IAI develops advanced cyber solutions for intelligence, protection, monitoring identification and accessibility.

Innovators meet Dealmakers.  The Israel Dealmakers Summit 24-25 Mar 2015 in New York City promises thousands of global entrepreneurs, innovators, dealmakers and investors. It features world-class speakers and networking in the areas of Digital Media, Mobile & Wireless, CyberSecurity, Life Sciences and much more.

Tel Aviv encourages start-ups from abroad.  Tel Aviv has 1,515 high tech companies that employ 43,000 workers.  Now, Tel Aviv municipality subsidiary Global City is giving incentive packages to entrepreneurs from abroad in order to add knowledge, diversity, and become global - thus strengthening the economy.

Microsoft buys Israeli digital pen company.  Multinational software giant Microsoft has bought Israel’s N-trig for an estimated $200 million.  N-trig has developed a chip for a digital pen and computer screen interface.

Use an Israeli app to hail a UK taxi.  UK readers will soon be able to use Israeli taxi app GetTaxi in seven UK cities.  GetTaxi has been operating in London for 3 years and is expanding to Edinburgh, Liverpool and Manchester immediately. It will also launch in Birmingham, Leeds and Glasgow in the next few months.  GetTaxi has also launched an app for smart-watches running the Android Wear operating system.

Apple CEO to inaugurate new Israeli HQ.  Apple boss Tim Cook is coming to Israel to formally open Apple Israel's new headquarters in Herzliya Pituach. Apple’s Israeli development center will house 800 Israeli employees, mainly from Apple’s purchases of Anobit, PrimeSense and from hiring ex-Texas Instruments staff.

Sodastream announces healthier beverages.  Israel’s Sodastream is launching new lines of products made of all natural flavors and ingredients, less sugar and no preservatives.  The reduced calorie, zero calories, nutritional supplements and lightly sweetened water series will be launched this spring, initially in Israel.


Opera at Masada.  The Israeli Opera announced its fifth Masada Opera Festival in June, featuring “Tosca” by Giacomo Puccini and “Carmina Burana” by Carl Orff, to be performed at the base of the historic mountain.

New stamps.  (Thanks to Jacob Richman) Israeli stamps issued in Feb include the Philippine rescue of Jews from the Shoah, Ariel Sharon, Chess and Winter flowers.

Bringing shakshuka to Manhattan streets.  Israeli friends Josh Sharon, Solomon Taraboulsi and Gabriel Israel have launched The Shuka Truck, serving shakshuka, the spicy Middle Eastern egg-and-tomatoes dish, on the streets of Manhattan.  It contains free-range organic eggs, Israeli spices and is certified Kosher.

Tel Aviv is a top 10 Oceanfront City.  (Thanks to SDM - Size Doesn’t Matter) Tel Aviv was chosen by National Geographic as one of the top ten-oceanfront cities in the world.  It highlights plenty of room for beach bathing in this modern Israeli city and the vibrant gallery, café, and restaurant scene at the historic port of Jaffa.


36 bereaved girls hold batmitzvot in Jerusalem.  The Jewish welfare organization Colel Chabad hosted a bat mitzvah celebration for 36 girls who have lost a parent. Most of the parents died from illness or terror attacks.

Righteous gentile’s grandson finds his home is in Israel.  Coss Weber is head physiotherapist at the Alyn hospital pediatric and adolescent rehabilitation facility in Jerusalem. Coss was born in a Dutch village - the grandson of a Righteous among the Nations, a person who risked his life to save Jews during the Holocaust.

Alongside Bnei Menashe: A personal journey.  Laura Ben-David accompanied 250 members of the Bnei Menashe tribe of Northern India as they made their journey to Israel that they had dreamed of doing for nearly three millennia.

Starlings return to the Jewish State.  After a long absence, short distance migrant starlings have started to return to Israel, a phenomenon that experts find difficult to explain.  Watch a flock of synchronized starlings (known as a “murmuration”) form spectacular sights of dancing clouds in the skies of southern Israel.

3 million are united with Israel.  United with Israel (UWI), the world’s largest grassroots pro-Israel community, is celebrating three-million supporters.  The occasion will be marked in Jerusalem on Feb 18 and broadcast across the world.  Founder Michael Gerbitz said, “we’ve been able to connect with millions of people – many in some of the most anti-Semitic countries – who are proud to stand united with Israel”.


In the 8th Feb 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli-developed stem cells can rebuild muscles after an operation.
·        Two young Israeli-Arabs have developed an app to treat ADHD.
·        Five years after the earthquake, Israelis are still helping Haiti to heal.
·        The Israeli-developed cancer breathalyzer is to be built into a smartphone.
·        Microsoft and IBM “launch” 16 new Israeli startups.
·        Jerusalem is exhibiting 100 clay tablets describing Jewish life 2500 years ago.
·        An Ethiopian Jewish immigrant to Israel has her first baby – at 56.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, Israel News Zone, IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, IsraPundit, Janglo, and United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Building muscle after hip replacement.  Israel’s Pluristem Therapeutics has announced that the improvement in muscle force of hip-replacement patients treated with its PLX-PAD cells was 40-times better than those who received a placebo.

The tiniest pump for diabetes and Parkinson’s.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Israel’s TouchéMedical is developing the world’s smallest, cheapest and smartest patch pump, for patients of all ages with diabetes, Parkinson’s and other chronic conditions.

Making it easier to remember your meds.  Israel’s MediSafe is opening an office in Boston.  It will help market MediSafe’s medication reminder app, which up to now has been promoted mainly by world of mouth.  Despite this, the app has been downloaded 1.3 million times and is used regularly by hundreds of thousands.

 “MEDinISRAEL – The heartbeat of Medical Innovation.” Representatives from 60 countries will attend Israel’s MEDinISRAEL conference from 23-26 March.  They will join 120 Israeli medical device companies and biotechs to discuss and demonstrate Israel’s latest developments in medical innovation.

Two Israeli-Arabs develop app to treat ADHD.  Aziz Kaddan and Anas Abu Mukh began degree courses at Haifa University when they were 16 years old.  They were just 19 when they thought up Myndlift - an app that teaches ADHD children and adults to concentrate by using their brainwaves to display a bright image.


Israel’s “Lego man” tells of Ezer Mizion’s kids.  Maor Cohen is known in Israel as the Lego man.  Three years ago Maor went to Israeli cancer charity Ezer Mizion to donate some Lego to young cancer sufferers.  But seeing children with sick parents reminded him of his early life.  So Maor stayed, and the Lego sets just grew.

Female cancer survivor becomes IDF officer.  Rotem Chiprut made aliya and joined the IDF as a lone soldier, only to discover she had cancerous cells in her thyroid gland.  Following surgery and treatment she completed her officer’s training and has now been promoted to 2nd lieutenant.

Give your heart out.  90% of jewelry manufacturer YVEL’s employees arrived in Israel from 20 countries. YVEL also trains Ethiopian Jews in all jewelry crafts.  It is now supporting the latest campaign by Israel’s Save A Child’s Heart (SACH) to raise funds for performing free heart surgery to children from developing countries.

Haiti – five years on.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Five years after the devastating earthquake, Israel has not abandoned its work in Haiti.  Humanitarian organization IsraAID is running a medical facility, an agriculture program, a youth empowerment center and a gender violence prevention program for Haitian women.

Clean water for Tanzanian school.  Students from Tel Aviv University have built a 48,000-liter rainwater harvesting and advanced filtration system that provides 400 school kids and staff at Nkaiti Secondary School in Minjingu, Tanzania with safe drinking water.  It will stop the children growing up with skeletal deformities.

Solar energy to Rwanda.  Israelis have helped install the largest solar field in East Africa.  Gigawatt Global, with its Israeli R&D center Energiya Global, has built an 8.5 Megawatt facility in Kigali, Rwanda, at the Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village, a kibbutz-style orphanage for victims of the 1994 Rwandan Genocide.


Detecting cancer with the SniffPhone.  The NaNose cancer breathalyzer technology developed by Professor Hossam Haick of Israel’s Technion will soon be installed in a mobile phone - to be called, appropriately, the SniffPhone. Using a tiny smell-sensitive sensor, the phone will be able to detect cancer on a users’ breath.

Music Messenger is an instant hit.  Israelis invented the first instant messaging system ICQ.  Now the Israeli startup Music Messenger allows friends to send music to each other.  Recent investors include some major players and celebrities from the music industry, some who have never before worked with an Israeli company.

How the Cornell Technion is developing.  Whilst the new 2 million-square-foot Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island is being constructed, its 2nd semester is underway in temporary offices provided by Google. Graduates from the two-year program will receive dual degrees from the New York and Israeli schools.

Israel is one of world’s most innovative countries.  (Thanks to Michelle) Depending on which report you read, Israeli innovation is rated 3rd in the world by the World Economic Forum and 5th by Bloomberg.


Microsoft’s graduate startups.  (Thanks to Michelle) 11 startups graduated from the Microsoft Ventures cybersecurity and medical accelerator program in Herzliya. 

IBM’s graduate startups.  IBM’s Alpha Zone accelerator for start-ups has just held its first graduation ceremony.  The five startups had 24 weeks of access to IBM professionals to help them to “go global”.  One startup, EGM, has developed a smart meter that IBM will be selling around the world.

Connecting Israel to Asia.  (Thanks to Michelle)  Startup East is the first Israeli – Asian accelerator aiming to connect startups in Israel and East Asia. In addition, it is launching a startup adventure Boot Camp program in Israel for Asian entrepreneurs, students and graduates.

Don’t leave the site.  Jerusalem-based startup Curiyo subtly persuades users to stay on a particular website. It places links to text on a site that tempts the user to click in order to discover useful information.  But those links don’t take the user to an external site.  Curiyo has just raised $1 million of new funding.

Find out if your website really “clicks”.  Israel’s ClickTale provides companies with analyses of the success (or otherwise) of their websites.  It shows how users behave when they use the site – does it generate enough business?  ClickTale has just raised $35 million of new funding.

Samsung invested in 8 Israeli startups in 2014.  Korean giant Samsung’s revenue from TVs last year was little changed from 2013.  That’s why it is seeking Israeli startups – in order to explore new business areas.

Intel buys German company and gets more Israeli developers.  Intel’s 10,000 Israeli employees will be joined by 100 staff from the Israeli development center of Germany’s Lantiq.  Intel acquired Lantiq, which previously bought Israel’s Matalink – a developer of wireless communications solutions.

New factory in China’s Israeli “silicon valley”.  Israeli automotive electronics company Taditel has established a new production plant in China. The plant is located in the CI3 industrial incubator initiative in Changzhou, Wujin Economic Zone (WEZ).

Israel – the bridge for China’s “Silk Road”.  This article focuses on Israel’s pivotal role in providing China with outlets to both the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea.

Two fruitful acquisitions.  Appropriately, on the Jewish New Year for trees, Israel’s Fruitarom announced it was buying two foreign companies.  Spain’s Ingrenat produces natural plant extracts.  The UK’s FoodBlenders manufactures savory solutions for the food industry.


By the rivers of Babylon.  Jerusalem’s Bible Lands Museum is exhibiting a never-before showcased collection of one hundred 2500-year-old clay tablets, detailing the life of Jews exiled from Judea by the Babylonians under King Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BCE.  The Al-Yahudu tablets even contain the family name Natanyahu.

Raise your glasses at kosher wine festival.  The fourth annual Jerusalem Kosher Wine Festival takes place on 11-12 Feb.  More than 40 wineries will be exhibiting their products at the International Convention Center.  In addition, some of Israel’s top chefs will be giving sessions on cooking with kosher wine.

Enjoy the Winter Noise.  (Thanks to Janglo) Jerusalem’s Shaon Horef is a series of Monday night (loud) music events throughout February.  Wander into the Machane Yehuda market to hear what’s happening.

Or the Jewish “Voice”.  (Thanks to Janglo) The new TV series, Hakol Haba (The Next Voice) is a religious version of “The Voice” or “A Star is Born” (Kohav Nolad). 


Wounded Israelis learn to ski.  The initiative of Mendel Mintz, the Chabad rabbi of Aspen, Colorado, has setup Golshim L’Chaim-Ski to Live.  The program brings wounded Israeli veterans and victims of terrorism to Aspen to learn how to ski - and boost their spirits.

1000 Israeli kids pick excess fruit for Tu’Bishvat.  On 4th Feb, in honor of Tu B’Shevat, the Jewish holiday that marks the new year for trees, thousands of Israeli youths volunteered with Leket Israel’s Project Citrus Rescue by picking excess fruit remaining on trees in people’s private gardens, in order to donate it to the poor.

The Arabs who support Israel, and why.  Great articles by Fred Maroun - an Arab Canadian.  Included is a long list of other Arabs, non-Arab Muslims and former Muslims who also support the democratic Jewish State.

Miracle baby for Ethiopian immigrant.  Following years of struggling to conceive, a 56-year-old Kiryat Malachi woman gave birth to her first child, a healthy boy.  Tami came on Aliya from Ethiopia during Operation Solomon in 1991.  She has nine brothers and always dreamed of having her own child.


In the 1st Feb 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli researchers have identified pro-cancer and anti-cancer white blood cells.
·        Israel has provided extra funds to train Israeli-Arabs in hi-tech.
·        Israeli surgeons have been repairing the cleft pallets of children in Vietnam.
·        An Israeli company is embarking on a huge micro-irrigation project in India.
·        Overseas firms spent almost $1 billion on Israeli startups in just one week.
·        150,000 will take part in the Tel Aviv Marathon and accompanying races.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraPundit, Janglo, Israel News Zone and United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


There are good and bad white blood cells.  Hebrew University of Jerusalem researchers have discovered that neutrophils (a form of white blood cell) contain many different subtypes. Some of these prevent cancer and others promote it. It opens avenues for therapies that increase anti-tumor neutrophils and limit pro-tumor ones.

Graft-vs-Host disease treatment gets boost.  The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has granted Israeli biotech Enlivex “orphan” status for its ApoCell treatment to prevent Graft-vs-Host Disease.  It will speed up development of the Israeli innovation that stops rejection of transplanted cells and bone marrow.

Researching Autism with Japan.  A team of Israeli and Japanese researchers has embarked on a project to discover how autistic spectrum disorder develops in the brain. It follows the conference “Advances in Brain Sciences”, jointly hosted by the Weizmann Institute of Science and Japan’s RIKEN Brain Science Institute.

Norwegian charity prize for Israeli cancer expert.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Norway’s largest charitable organization, the Olav Thon Foundation has chosen Tel Aviv University cancer geneticist Professor Yosef Shiloh as one of the two recipients of its very first international medical research award.

350,000 people to benefit from new medicines.  Israel’s Health Council has added an additional 73 medicines and technologies into the Government’s subsidized “Health Basket”.  The changes will benefit 350,000 Israelis at a cost of NIS 324 million.

Mapping the brains of the blind.  Scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem are studying brain activity of blind people in order to shed new light on how our brains can adapt to the rapid cultural and technological changes of the 21st Century.  Already they have found that reading Braille utilizes “visual” areas of the brain.


Integrating minorities into hi-tech.  Israel’s Economy ministry has awarded NIS 10 million to two organizations, Tsofen and ITworks, for the training and integration of Arab, Druse, and Circassian academics into the hi-tech sector.  It will help narrow the social and economic gaps between population sectors in Israel.

Haredi women – a market sector all their own.  Technically skilled Haredi (ultra-orthodox) women are carving out a new sector in the Israeli entrepreneurial space.  The Jerusalem “hub” of the organization Temech, helps connect them to professional resources, to employment opportunities or to start their own businesses.

And the first Haredi women’s political party.  For the first time in Israeli political history, a political party led by Haredi women is to run in the March 19th Israeli elections.  The party to be named “Bizchutan” (“in their merit”) will be led by Ruth Kuliak, a social activist who has worked to promote the advancement of women.

More protection for consumers.  (Thanks to Janglo) Amendments to Israel’s Consumer Protection Law went into force on 1st Jan, strengthening consumer rights.  They enforce existing laws with short-timescale fines and add new laws to ban undue pressures to make purchases.  You can also now take your own food into cinemas!

New program to get Israelis on their bikes.  Israel’s Environment Ministry is to provide $1.6 million for local authorities to encourage commuters to use public transport or bicycles in congested Israeli cities.  It includes new bicycle rental stations, cycle paths and a subsidized station taxi service.  Jerusalem will get a “biker’s app”.

Nice photos from home and abroad.  (Thanks to Israelicool) Two photos aptly fit this “inclusive and global” section.  The first is of an Arab girl in hijab, a Jewish man in black hat and a female Israeli soldier waiting to cross a Jerusalem street.  Then Canada’s Foreign Minister John Baird took a lovely photo at Davos.

Bringing a smile to Vietnamese children.  Two surgeons from Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center - Omri Amudi and Zach Sharony - have just returned from participating in “Operation Smile” in Vietnam. They performed free reconstructive surgery on children for cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities.


Send video messages from your wristwatch.  Israeli start-up Glide has developed video texting that is so fast, you be watching the video the other side of the world before your friend has finished recording it!  And now, Glide is putting that technology onto smart watches.  Remember Dick Tracey’s watch? It’s been superceded.

Ecological makeover for Tel Aviv bus station.  The Onya Collective is turning Tel Aviv’s massive concrete bus station into a blossoming center for urban ecology.  This includes hydroponics, growing plants without soil, under special LED lights. Gardens grow lettuce and strawberries using drip irrigation from the air-con system.

China-Israel innovation cooperation.  (Thanks to Michelle) Beijing hosted the first meeting of the China-Israel government innovative cooperation joint committee.  Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu both sent their congratulations.

Micro-irrigation for India.  Israeli water company Netafim has been selected to partake in a $60 million micro-irrigation project in the Indian state of Karnataka.  The project will span 12,000 hectares, help 6,700 farmers in 22 villages, increase crop production and save 50 percent of their water consumption.

A Digital Upgrade at the Tower of David Museum.  (Thanks to Michelle) Jerusalem’s Tower of David Museum is introducing a new digital initiative. Position any mobile device over the view and an audiovisual guide, using IDF mapping technology, will identify and explain landmarks within the frame.

You won’t need this in Israel.  Israeli Shalom Koresh has invented a new invisible kippa (skull cap) made from artificial hair called “Magic Kippa.” It is for Orthodox Jews in Europe where recent terrorist attacks against the Jewish communities have left many afraid to go out in public wearing a kippa.


Government deficit far lower than expected.  The Israeli Government’s 2014 deficit was NIS 29.9 billion (2.8% of GDP) compared to its budget of NIS 31.1 billion.  This is despite an unplanned NIS 7 billion cost of fighting Operation Protective Edge.

Over $900 million for Israeli startups in one week.  Acquisitions and investment into Israeli startups in a seven-day period in January amounted to over $900 million.  Amazon bought Israel’s Annapurna Labs for $370 million. Harman paid $200 million for Red Bend Software.  Dropbox bought CloudOn and Microsoft, Equivo.  And take a look at The Economist’s infograph showing Tel Aviv as the world’s no. 2 startup ecosystem.

17-year-old head of Israeli startup.  (Thanks to Israel21c) 17-year-old Iddo Gino heads RapidPay, a year-old company providing a mobile payment platform for customers without a credit card.  Iddo studies at the Hebrew Reali School in Haifa and hopes to obtain a degree in computer science at the Open University next year.

Direct flights to China.  China’s largest private airline, Hainan, is to commence flights between Tel Aviv and Beijing.  Hainan will operate three return flights a week, on the days that El Al does not fly to Beijing.  The new service reflects increased business ties between China and Israel and a 76% rise in Chinese tourists since 2012.

Chinese set up second $100 million investment fund.  The founders of Chinese holdings giant Tencent and social network Renren are putting up cash for a new $102 million fund – the second to invest in Israeli startups.  The new fund will cover financial technology, the Internet of Things, mobile development, and robotics.

Canada strengthens cooperation with Israel (thanks to www.sizedoesntmatter.com) The Foreign Ministers of Israel and Canada have signed a Joint Declaration of Solidarity and Friendship that they said would increase collaboration on diplomacy and trade development.

Water desalination for Texas.  Israel’s IDE Technologies is expanding throughout the USA by opening a new office in the State of Texas.  Regular newsletter readers may recall IDE’s desalination facility in San Diego.

Dropbox opens Middle East hub in Israel.  Dropbox has acquired Israel’s CloudOn, a startup that offers a service for creating and editing documents on mobile devices.  Dropbox will use CloudOn’s Herzliya office as a new hub in the Middle East.


Israeli food is “yummy”.  A new Taglit tour of Israel concentrates on the culinary delights of Israel.  Participants (mostly chefs) learn about Israeli cuisine, meet Israeli chefs and visit organic farms in the desert, boutique wineries and markets.  A participant described it as a "bonding experience with the land through food"

Israel Space Week.  During its annual Space Week Israel launched an “out of this world” website on Israeli activities related to space. There were also 25 free activities including observations of Jupiter, workshops for building satellite and space vehicle models, planetarium shows, an intergalactic light show and much more.

Jewish Capoeira in Tel Aviv.  Ultra Orthodox Jew Micky Hayat belongs to the Abada Capoeira training group near Tel Aviv Port.  Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art that combines dance, acrobatics and music. Micky teaches over 200 students, while seeking to promote martial arts in the ultra orthodox sector in Israel.

“The largest sports event in Israel’s history.”  The 2015 Tel Aviv Marathon on Feb 27th has attracted 40,000 runners. 110,000 more will take part in the half-marathon, the 10km and 5km races and the hand-cycle race.


Israel’s Social Media Ambassadors.  The International education non-profit StandWithUs has launched its “Social Media Ambassadors” program. University students will be trained to use multiple platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more, to educate the public at large about the reality of Israel.

“The most diverse Jewish community in the world”.  Nachalot is one of the most popular neighborhoods in Jerusalem.  Sephardim, Ashkenazim, Hassidim, secular, non-Jews, everyone lives together.  Students and tourists make it part of the essential Jewish experience.

Israel’s first female spiritual advisor.  In the Bible there was Deborah and in Talmud times there was Bruriah.  Today, the Efrat Community has Jennie Rosenfeld – the first woman in the history of the State of Israel to fill the role of manhiga ruchanit – spiritual advisor.

“Awed by pluralistic, diverse Israel.”  During a San Diego State University non-Jewish student’s visit to Israel he saw a Christian church, a Jewish synagogue, and a Muslim mosque all within a block of each other and heard the Muslim call to prayer in Jaffa.  It left him determined to stand up for the democratic Jewish State. 


In the 25th Jan 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Jerusalem exhibits a Jewish doctor’s vaccine from 1892 that saved millions of lives.
·        Israel funds the training of Palestinian Arab farmers.
·        Johnson & Johnson and Takeda have started a biotech incubator in Israel.
·        2014 saw a massive increase in international investment into Israeli companies.
·        Japan used a huge jumbo jet to bring hundreds of businessmen to Israel.
·        For the first time, an Israeli has won a European speed-skating gold medal.
·        Israel is bringing home from Argentina the plane that rescued Jews from Iraq in 1947.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “Israel is Getting it Together” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on Jerusalem Post, IsraPundit and San Diego Jewish World.
·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen, IsraPundit, “Ruthfully Yours” and United with Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Jerusalem displays Jewish-developed cholera vaccine.  Dr Waldemar Haffkine, a Russian-Jewish microbiologist, developed the cholera vaccine in 1892.  Jerusalem’s Tower of David Museum is now exhibiting one of the original ampoules of vaccine.  Dr Haffkine also developed a vaccine for plague and was knighted by Queen Victoria in 1897.  Sir Waldemar donated his extensive personal archive to the National Library of Israel.

ALS treatment trial shows success.  Israel’s Brainstorm has announced positive final results from its phase 2a clinical trial of NurOwn cells in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients used on 14 subjects at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem.  Nearly all subjects experienced clinical benefit.

Good results for Fabry Disease treatment.  Israel’s Protalix Biotherepeutics reported good results in its trials of its PRX-102 treatment for the genetic disease Fabry’s.  Even a low dosage had an average 78.8% decrease in the effect of pain on the patients' functioning.

Teva launches a generic painkiller.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s Teva has launched the first FDA-approved generic equivalent to Celebrex (Celecoxib) Capsules in the US.  Celebrex is used to treat arthritis, pain, menstrual cramps, and colonic polyps.

The fruitful way to conceive.  Israel’s Fruitful Way Ltd. has pioneered a new, natural fertility and conception toolkit for couples who are trying to get pregnant. It includes a unique, science-backed dietary supplement, scientifically mated with a sophisticated fertility app.

Israeli science saves 5-year-old girl.  A 35-year-old study by Israel’s Professor Raphael Mechoulam convinced Denver-based physician Dr. Alan Shackelford to use synthesized cannabidiol or CBD to save 5-year-old Charlotte Figi who suffered 300 epileptic fits a week.  Dr Shackelford immigrated to Israel in 2012.


Beer Sheva – a “City of Tomorrow”.  Beer-Sheva is one of seven locations worldwide included in the Global Technology Emerging Markets study by Brandeis International and T3 Advisors of emerging, up-and-coming hubs that technology and life sciences companies should consider as they evaluate their global location strategy. 

Israeli Christians who fight for Israel.  A UK reporter finally realizes that there are Christians in Israel who identify with the Jewish State.  (However, he falsely defines what a Jewish State is.)

Israeli-Turkish relations requires a woman’s touch.  Israel has appointed Amira Oron as head of its embassy in Ankara.  Oron has been serving as the head of the Egypt Department at the Foreign Ministry. Israel recently appointed seven new top women foreign diplomats including Einat Shlain, Israel’s ambassador to Jordan.

Israeli support to Palestinian Arab farmers.  The Israeli government has donated 300,000 shekels to five Palestinian Arab farmers to upgrade their strawberry facilities.  In addition 30 Palestinian Arab farmers came to Israel to study strawberry cultivation.  Annually, Israel funds 1200 Palestinian Arab farmers to study in Israel.

Water for India – out of thin air.  (Thanks to Michelle) Israel’s Water-Gen is to bring its pioneering air-to-water technology to India, where more than 50% of the urban poor (over 150 million) are not connected to a water supply.

Israel adopts Grand Challenges Canada.  (Thanks to Nevet – www.broaderview.org) Israel’s new “Grand Challenges Israel” program is modeled on Grand Challenges Canada. Israel’s Avigdor Lieberman and Canada’s John Baird unveiled ten Israeli innovation projects, addressing cancer, malaria, aquaculture, wheelchairs etc.

Japan to partner Israel technology.  Flying out of Tel Aviv last week I passed by the Japan Airlines 747 that brought in Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his large delegation of Japanese businessmen.  Abe and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presided over a "Japan-Israel Business Forum" to promote mutual connections.


A technology innovation leader.  Frost & Sullivan have awarded their prestigious Global Technology Innovation Leader Award to Israel’s Windward.  The award reflects Windward's unique technology, which is bringing cutting edge innovation to one of the last 'wild west' frontiers: ships navigating the world's oceans.

Horizon 2020.  Ben Gurion University’s Dr. Natalie Elia and Dr. Eyal Arbely were awarded a European Horizon 2020 ERC Starting Grant for their project, “Quantitative Nanoscale Visualization of Macromolecular Complexes in Live Cells using Genetic Code Expansion and High-Resolution Imaging”.  (Don’t ask!)

Another Israeli R&D center.  (Thanks to Michelle) Teradata – the US giant data analytics company, has bought Appoxee - an Israeli startup aimed at publishers and developers that want to send out messages to increase user engagement in their apps.  Appoxee will become Teradata’s research and development center.

Biotech incubator opens.  Johnson and Johnson, together with Takeda and OrbiMed have launched FutuRx in Rehovot’s Weizmann Science Park.  Its first start-up is Hepy Biosciences, which is developing a tumor enzyme inhibitor. The second, XoNovo, is developing a treatment that targets a protein implicated in Alzheimer’s.

Israel’s water graduates are on a crest of a wave.  Delegates at Kinneret College’s first water conference learnt about the work of its BSc graduates in Water Industry Engineering.  One breakthrough project is the extension of a wastewater system under Israel’s main Tel Aviv highway, undertaken without disrupting traffic.

Cambridge University funds Israeli scientists.  The Blavatnik Family Foundation has set up a new multi-million pound investment fund for Israeli scientists to pursue post-doctorate research at Cambridge University.  Three Israeli scientists are now furthering their research in engineering, genetics and physics at Cambridge.


Huge investment in Israeli innovation.  (Thanks to Michelle) The Israel Venture Capital (IVC) Research Center reported that Israeli venture capital funds attracted $914 million in 2014, up 68 percent on 2013.  Israeli companies raised $2.1 billion with US Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) in 2014 - up from $360 million in 2013.

Israel exhibition pavilion opens in India.  (Thanks to Stuart Palmer) The Israel pavilion entitled “Israel Innovation in India” opened at Vibrant Gujarat 2015, exhibiting the ongoing Indo-Israeli cooperation and showcasing advanced Israeli technologies in the fields of agriculture and homeland security.

Games are a big business.  Israel’s TabTable is one of the world’s top 10 mobile games publishers with operations in Israel, the U.S., China, Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Ukraine.  TabTable has just bought Serbia’s Level Bit, developers of Genesis Rising - the biggest PC game hit by a Serbian company.

Moovit is really moving.  (Thanks to Michelle) Israel’s Moovit has raised $50 million for its mobile app that lets riders plan trips and avoid obstacles on public transit systems in more than 500 cities around the world.

Bone-repair company plans NASDAQ IPO.  Israel’s PolyPid is preparing to launch on NASDAQ.  PolyPid, develops an antibiotic coating for safer bone repair.  It also has two candidate bone grafting materials and a unique PLEX (Polymer-Lipid Encapsulation MatriX) mechanism for delivering medicine into the body.

Microsoft buys another Israeli startup.  Software giant Microsoft is acquiring Israel’s Equivo for at least $150 million.  Equivio’s text analysis software summarizes and condenses lengthy documents.  Microsoft plans to integrate the product into its Office 365 package to boost user productivity.


Boutique revolution puts Israeli wines on world map.  (Thanks to Israel21c) This AFP news story about Israeli boutique wines has been reprinted in Malaysia, China, South Africa, Bangladesh, the UK, Sweden and France.  Globes also reports that Israeli wine sales increased by 10% in 2014.

Now you can fish in Jerusalem.  (Thanks to Janglo) Nachal Refaim Park is a new Jerusalem park between the neighborhoods of Malcha, Givat Masua and Kiryat Menachem.  Jerusalem’s Mayor, Nir Barkat, found a good place in the park to do some river fishing.

Israel wins European speed-skating gold medal.  (Hot off the press) Israel’s Vladislav Bykanov won gold in the 3000m race of the European Short Track Speed Skating championship. It is the first time an Israeli has won the competition.  The 26-year-old from Kiryat Shmona beat world champion Viktor Ahn by 500 meters.

“Mortally wounded” Israeli recovers to launch triathlon.  Ohad Ben-Yishai received critical shrapnel wounds to the head during Operation Protective Edge.  Still in a wheelchair, Ohad was given a break from his rehabilitation to officiate at the start of Eilat’s “Ironman” triathlon, in which his father is competing.


Safed – one of Israel’s holiest cities.  Surrounded by the mountains and forests of the green Upper Galilee, Safed (Tzfat) is world-famous for its winding alleyways and old majestic synagogues, its Artists Quarter, its musicians, its history of kabbalah and spirituality.

The Modern Day Miracle of Israel.  Armstrong Williams writes an inspiring account of his journey across Israel and the PA territories. His key sentence is, “When you pause to consider what Israel has managed to give to the world, despite being under constant fire from its enemies, it is staggering.”

Historic plane rescued from scrap yard.  A Curtiss C-46 Commando transport aircraft, used to rescue 100 Iraqi Jews in 1947, will soon return to Israel after being saved from a metal scrap yard in Argentina.  Operation Michaelberg was launched when the British denied persecuted Iraqi Jews permission to enter Israel legally.

US ex-Army amputee volunteers for Israel.  US Christian Brian Mast, who lost both legs from a bomb-blast in Afghanistan, has joined the IDF’s Sar El volunteer program.  He puts his pro-Israel attitude down to his upbringing, military contacts with IDF personnel and warm relations with his Florida Jewish neighbors.

Don’t judge Israel before you’ve seen it.  Irish Catholic Belinda Hickey visited Israel for the first time in 2006, when love for Israel was kindled in her heart.  Now she is a role model in courage as she promotes Israel in the face of anti-Semitism in Ireland.


In the 18th Jan 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Two Israeli biotechs are at the forefront of a new method for destroying cancer cells.
·        A 16-year-old Israeli girl has just started medical School.
·        65% of Israel’s Arabs say they are proud to be Israeli.
·        An Israeli T-shirt monitors your heart.
·        Drivers can see five times further with an Israeli night vision system.
·        Israel has discovered another massive natural gas field.
·        Two Israelis, who escaped Nazi Germany, celebrate the birth of their 100th great-grandchild.

·        Last week’s JPost Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “How lucky is Israel?” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on Jerusalem Post, IsraPundit and San Diego Jewish World.
·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen and United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Trial of new cancer antibody approved.  Israel’s cCAM has received US FDA approval to commence trials of its CM-24 monoclonal antibody (mAb) for the treatment of various types of cancers.  CM-24 targets CEACAM1, a novel immune checkpoint protein expressed on a variety of cancer cells.

Israel & USA team up to fight cancer.  Israeli biotech Compugen has enlisted John Hopkins University to help assess Compugen’s cancer immunotherapy candidates.  These new treatments aim to counter the ability of tumors to highjack “immune checkpoints”, thereby blocking the immune system’s ability to destroy the tumor.

Effective for detecting lingering cancer cells.  (Thanks to Michelle) New York City’s NYU Langone Medical Center has praised MarginProbe from Israel’s Dune Medical, used by surgeons to identify and help them remove cancer cells on the margins of removed tumors.  MarginProbe avoids the need for follow-up surgery.

90% response to cancer vaccine.  (Thanks to NoCamels.com) Julian Levy, CFO of Israel’s Vaxil Biotherapeutics speaks to NoCamels about Vaxil’s cancer vaccine, ImMucin, that boosts the immune system and prevents cancer returning.  ImMucin triggers a response in about 90 percent of all types of cancer.

US approve 360-degree colonoscope.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s GI View has just received US FDA approval for its Aer-O-Scope colonoscope, for advanced detection of polyps that frequently develop into colon cancer. GI View is expected to start selling the product in the U.S. in early 2016.

Spine surgery system wins two awards.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s NLT-Spine has won a 2014 Spine Technology Award from US Magazine Orthopedics This Week, for its ARC Pedicle Screw System.  The company also was included (for the second year running) in the list of Red Herring Global 100 winners.

Med school at 16.  If Israelis are exceptional people, then Maya Fishman is amazing.  Only 16-years old, she has already started med school at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.  She is on course to become the youngest doctor in the history of the State of Israel.

What lurks in your lungs?  (Thanks to Israel21c) Professor Elizabeth Fireman of Tel Aviv’s Sourasky Medical Center has developed a highly accurate bio-monitoring technique to detect dangerous particles inhaled by firefighters, factory workers, dental technicians and kids with asthma.


Kids can explore the world in 80 words.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Tel Aviv’s Wiki-Kids has launched Wikids – apps with friendly text, images and sound, to help children discover the world independently.  Each entry has around 80 words, with no adverts or links - all certified by the kidSAFE Seal Program and Momswithapps.

Jerusalem opens center to empower new mothers.  The Jerusalem Municipality is opening a community center to address the ongoing needs of women during and after pregnancy. It will offer career counseling to assist mothers on maternity leave to successfully renter the workforce.

Lalli the lamb gets a new chance of life.  Lalli the lamb was born with deformed legs and unable to walk.  Thanks to Israeli ingenuity and physiotherapy, she is getting along just fine.  (Video has English subtitles)

Arabs proud to be Israeli.  (Thanks to Evelyn Gordon)  In a recent survey, 65 percent of Arab citizens said they were either “quite” or “very” proud to be Israeli in 2014, up from 50 percent the previous year.  The majority had faith in the Supreme Court, Israeli police and in the IDF.

Israel’s top rescue missions – Leadership and saving lives.  An inspirational presentation by Brigadier General Professor Yitshak Kreiss describing the medical rescue missions undertaken by Israel's army in recent years.  Leadership, medicine and the personal dilemmas faced when dealing with humanitarian emergencies.

Journey to the Start-up Nation.  During January, students from seven US Jewish day schools will participate in the first “CIJE-Tech: Journey to the Start-Up Nation” STEM Education Israel Trip.  It will prepare students to innovate, problem solve and leverage their skills in 21st century Science, Tech, Engineering and Math.

Chicago reaches out to Israel for water’s sake.  The University of Chicago has sought out Israel's Ben-Gurion University to help tackle water scarcity.  In laboratories in Chicago and the Israeli desert, scientists are crafting radical new approaches that may one day rejuvenate the world's water-starved regions.


Next generation of flash storage – simply faster.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s Kaminario has set new performance records for flash storage.  It also boasts reliability, scalability and cost/performance figures that its competitors can only dream of.  Kaminario easily raised $53million in funds to fuel global expansion.

Scottish Water likes Israeli recycling technology.  Israel’s Applied CleanTech has successfully completed its first UK pilot project of its new recycling technology for wastewater at Scottish Water.  The system produces a useful material called Recyllose from sewage while reducing maintenance and power costs.

A shirt that monitors your heart.  Israeli startup HealthWatch Technologies has developed a washable T-shirt that can read a patient’s heart rate, blood pressure, cardiac irregularities, and other vital signs that could be the key to preventing heart attacks.  All data can be transmitted instantly to your cardiologist, as speed is essential.

Smart low-energy hotels.  Israeli startup Phoebus Energy is to install smart systems in the Fattal chain’s nine Israeli hotels.  The systems will cut the chain's heating and air-conditioning costs by 50-75%, amounting to NIS 40 million over the coming decade. The lower energy consumption will also benefit the environment.

Bell Labs (Israel) has big plans.  The opening of Bell Labs in Israel provides an avenue for Israeli PhD graduates to pursue research careers in Israel.  Director of the new branch, Danny Raz, was until recently a professor in the Department of Computer Science at Israel’s Technion.

Would a solar panel work for you?  It can cost up to $4,000 for a survey to check whether a solar panel on your roof could generate sufficient solar energy to justify installation.  Israel’s SolView uses Google Earth and its automated rooftop scanning technology to do that instantly.

Safer night driving.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Israeli startup BrightWay Vision has developed “BrightEye” – a unique night-vision system that gives drivers a clear, panoramic view of the road.  The system uses active-gated imaging to project images up to 250 meters ahead (5 times further than headlights) onto the driver’s screen.

Another “doggy” app.  Following on the heels of “Dogiz”, “Oggii”, “Pawly”, “Swifto”, “KelevLand” and “DogTV”, we now have “Wooof” – a made-in-Israel app, providing a platform for dog owners to get together online, “trading” photos, recording dog walking routes and even alerting when a dog inspector is in the area.


Israel discovers another major gas field.  A new huge natural gas field has been discovered about 150 km off Israel's coast. Seismic analysis suggests that the Royee field contains an estimated 3.2 trillion cubic feet of gas, making it Israel’s third largest after Leviathan and Tamar.

Turning viewers into customers.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s Viewbix turns a company’s youtube or vimeo videos into marketing applications.  It integrates interactive features such as action buttons and email forms into the video itself, allowing potential customers to communicate directly.  Viewbix has just raised $3million.

AOL invests in Technion research.  AOL, the American Internet and media giant, will be investing $5million in a video research project at the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute.  AOL’s R&D center in Israel specializes in developing innovation in the field of online video.

A healthy acquisition.  Israel’s Frutarom Industries has bought Slovenia’s Vitiva for around $10million.  Vitiva’s antioxidants, natural colors and botanical extracts will enhance Frutarom’s food, health and cosmetic business. It also brings in a cutting-edge plant, skilled personnel and impressive R&D capabilities.

Another $8.3million for 11 projects.  The Israel-US Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation has approved $8.3 million in new funding for 11 projects involving US and Israeli companies.  The Israeli firms include BrainsGate, MobileOCT, ThetaRay, Orgenesis and Softwheel (from previous newsletters).

Kodak wants to buy Israeli startups.  Jeff Clarke, the new CEO of venerable camera-maker Kodak, is in Israel looking to acquire tech startups that can help rebuild his company as a leader in digital printing.


Hebrew Bibles reunited after 350 years.  When filmmaker Micha Shagrir donated a 1667 Hebrew Bible to Haifa University, staff discovered a Bible written by the same person already on the library's shelves.  An Egyptian Armenian gave Shagrir his Bible in gratitude for his film about the Armenian genocide.

Israeli short film 'Aya' gets Oscar nomination.  The 40-minute Israeli film "Aya" has been included in the final list of nominations for an Oscar in the category of "Best Live Action Short".  Aya follows the encounter between an Israeli woman driver and a Scandinavian musician who gets into the wrong car at the airport.

English soccer club appoints Israeli coach.  (Thanks to Hazel) English Championship Soccer League side Charlton Athletic has appointed Israeli Guy Luzon as their new head coach.  Luzon was previously coach at top Belgian soccer club Standard Liege.


Archeology points to King David.  Archeologists have discovered clay seals in Israel dating from the 10th century BCE – the biblical dating of the kingdoms of David and Solomon.  The find is evidence of a national government at a time when many scholars previously believed that there were only backwater chieftains.

 “This is your land”.  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Taglit-Birthright Israel’s 15th anniversary event said to the youngsters, “In Israel, every Jew can say, ‘I am a Jew, Je suis Juif,’ out loud and proudly, without fear. Come to Israel. Come visit Israel. Come stay in Israel. Come make aliyah to Israel. This is your land.”

100 great-grandchildren.  Israelis Michael (92) and Marion (90) Mittwoch have just celebrated the birth of a new great-grandchild – their 100th.  After escaping Nazi Germany, the Mittwochs immigrated to Israel where they became the first couple to be married at Kibbutz Lavi.  All children and grandchildren live in Israel. 

Ukrainian refugees land in Israel.  Two hundred and twenty-six immigrants, 76 of which are children, landed in Israel on a special flight from Ukraine.  They included dozens of families of refugees from eastern Ukraine who were made destitute as a result of the ongoing fighting, and were forced to leave their homes.

A Zionist dream come true.  Evelyn Gordon writes about some of the reasons that European Jews, despite all doors being open to them, are now choosing Israel to be their future home. 

 “They will all come to Jerusalem”.  Select full screen view to see this amazing video tour of the highway to Jerusalem. It shows the new road construction in context with the Biblical sites mentioned along the way.


In the 11th Jan 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        In a chance discovery, Israeli scientists have found a treatment to kill deadly bacteria.
·        This week’s newsletter features the development of four Israeli cancer treatments
·        Israeli surgeons have reconstructed the jaw of an injured Syrian refugee.
·        An Israeli microphone enhances a speaker’s voice over any background noise.
·        An Israeli CO2-to-fuel reactor has won a World Technology Award.
·        Latest IDF recruits include 3 Chinese Jews and a baby saved from terrorists 18 years ago.

·        Last week’s Israel Good News descriptive summary.  Click here for “2015 – So what’s new?” (fast-loading version, no adverts).  Also on the Jerusalem Post and San Diego Jewish World.
·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen.com, IsraPundit and in sections on United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Anti-inflammatory treatment may prevent deadly infections.  Ben Gurion University researchers have discovered accidentally that alpha1-antitrypsin (AAT) could prevent deadly infections in immune system-compromised patients.  Lethal bacteria in mice were practically eradicated by AAT therapy within 24 hours.

Wearable technology to analyze Parkinson’s.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Intel Israel has developed an advanced analytics platform for researching the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.  The system can work with smart watches linked to a smartphone and can handle 300 observations per second from each participant.

Teva launches generic antibiotics.  Israel’s Teva continues to help keep down US health costs by launching generic versions of two leading antibiotics - Zyvox (linezolid), and Nafcillin - injectable antibiotics for the treatment of severe infections.  Teva also has launched a generic blood-pressure treatment.

Nano-particles to attack cancer. (Thanks to Israel21c) Israel’s Quiet Therapeutics has developed “GAGomers,” a new class of nano-particles (coated with glycosaminoglycan, or GAGs, a polysugar) that specifically target tumors and blood cancers based on a biomarker expressed on malignant tissue.

Success in antibody cancer therapy.  Israeli biotech Compugen has announced positive initial experimental results for the first two of five of its candidate antibody cancer therapy (ADC) treatments.  ADC therapy uses antibodies to target proteins present at high levels in cancer cells, releasing a toxic payload to kill the cells.

Early detection of colon and uterine cancer.  A breakthrough by researchers at the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem will allow early detection and possible prevention of colon and uterine cancers.  They have discovered a genetic mutation that can identify at-risk patients.

Leukemia treatment gets boost.  The US FDA and the European Medicines Agency have awarded Israel’s stem cell therapy developer Gamida Cell orphan status for its NiCord leukemia treatment. NiCord treats acute lymphoblastic leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia, Hodgkin lymphoma and myelodysplastic syndrome.


Tablets let bedridden kids “attend” school.  Samsung and Israeli e-book firm E-vrit have teamed up to enable long-term hospital patients keep up with their classmates. Children at Israel’s Schneider hospital will receive a Samsung tablet, including E-vrit’s software and e-books, connected to the hospital’s learning center.

IDF helps PA combat the snow.  Following a request by the Palestinian Authority, Israeli Defense Forces have been helping to clear snow blocking roads to the PA city of Ramallah.  Other specific incidents included helping to clear flooding in Tulkarem and helping a Palestinian Arab push his taxi out of frozen mud.

Israeli surgeons reconstruct Syrian’s jaw.  A 23-year-old Syrian citizen arrived in Israel for treatment after a bullet completely destroyed his lower jaw. Doctors at Haifa’s Rambam hospital implanted a custom-made 3D-printed titanium jaw in a pioneering new operation. One day after surgery, the patient was eating and speaking.

Israel inaugurates farm in Senegal.  The Israeli embassy in Senegal has inaugurated a drip-irrigated vegetable farm in the city of Fatick. It is being managed by a group of Senegalese women.  The innovative Israeli program has been vital for fighting poverty in the drought-prone Sub-Saharan African country.

Brazil delegation in Israel to train in Krav Maga.  Israel’s Kobi Lichtenstein is South America’s guru of 10,000 students of the Israeli self-defense art of Krav Maga.  There are over 150 Krav Maga centers in the continent.  Kobi has brought two Krav Maga missions from Brazil to train at Masada, in Tiberias and Netanya. 

Helping New York tap into Israeli entrepreneurial ecosystem.  (Thanks to Israel21c)  Former Israeli paratrooper Lior Vaknin founded Israeli Startups NYC, which now has a 2000 membership.  200 attended its recent startup pitch night and panel discussion entitled “How to Build a $100 Million Business.”


Making your voice heard.  Communications giant Motorola has invested in Israeli start-up VocalZoom, which has developed an optoelectronic microphone able to substantially enhance a speaker’s voice over any background noise. The technology creates a “virtual cube” in space, sensing sound from only within the cube.

A vegetable garden on your wall.  (Thanks to Israel21c) With limited available space you can still grow sufficient vegetables to feed yourself wherever you live, thanks to the vertical gardens technology of Israel’s GreenWall.  Around 100 living walls have been installed in Israel.  Prices start at $800.

Israel’s solar-panel dry-cleaning robots.  (Thanks to Nevet – www.broaderview.org) A comprehensive report about the robots, built by Israeli startup Ecoppia. They clean solar panels in the desert (without water) to keep them in the most efficient condition.

Sensors to save energy.  Ben Gurion University students have developed a climate-controlled location-based air conditioning system using real-time sensors with an infrared and depth perception camera. It activates when a person enters the room, turns off when the person leaves, and tracks the temperature throughout the location.

Israeli ingenuity on display at CES.  Some of Israel’s most innovative startups are on display at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.  They include ZuTA Labs’ Mini Mobile Robotic Printer, Lexifone’s language translator and uMoove’s app that tracks eye movements to detect neurological problems.

Detecting water leaks.  Over 30 percent of the fresh water supplied by the world’s water utilities is lost through leaking pipes.  The systems developed by Israel’s TaKaDu detect leaks and are saving billions of liters of water all over the world.  And yet there are still some utilities that believe it’s impossible!

World Technology Awards winner.  Israel’s NewCO2Fuels (NCF) won the 2014 World Technology Award in the Corporate Energy category.  NCF is developing a reactor to convert Carbon Dioxide into fuel.

Non-toxic control of insect pests.  Israel’s EdenShield uses natural desert plant extracts that mask the odor of crops and fools insects that prey on the crops.  EdenShield has just raised over $1million to expand operations.


Israeli diamonds still sparkle.  Israel’s exports of polished and rough diamonds rose by more than $175 million in 2014.  Net exports of polished diamonds totaled $6.269 billion and rough diamonds $3.061 billion.

El Al starts Tel Aviv to Boston service.  Israel’s El Al airline has begun selling tickets for its new route from Tel Aviv to Boston Logan International airport.  Boston is a popular business destination.

More Israeli firefighting aircraft. Israel’s Ministry of Defense is buying six new firefighting aircraft to add to its eight-plane squadron.  The US Air Tractor planes will be upgraded and maintained by Israel’s Elbit Systems.

Water for Taiwan.  Taiwan and Israel held a seminar in Taipei aimed at seeking closer cooperation in the area of water resources management.  Israeli companies gave presentations of their products and solutions on waste waster treatment, water quality control and reducing leaks.

Stronger ties with Japan.  The Israeli cabinet approved Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s program to strengthen economic ties with Japan. The comprehensive plan involves several areas of government and the investment of tens of millions of shekels over the next three years.

Chinese invest in new Israeli biotechs.  (Thanks to Globes & CFHU) A Chinese investment company has placed $3million in Integra Holdings – the biotechnology holdings company of Yissum, the technology transfer company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. It will fund new biotechs founded by the Hebrew University.

Buying into Israel’s future.  Morton Mandel invests in Israeli firms as a way of building up the Jewish state.  His aim is to “buy more companies that are not doing well and fix them up” for a better, stronger, healthier Israel. He also runs leadership-training programs to unlock the talents of the ultra-Orthodox community.


Restoring Jerusalem’s “Great Synagogue”.  Yaakov Stark’s early-20th Century murals at Jerusalem’s Ades Synagogue (called with affection the “Great Synagogue”) are a masterpiece of early Zionist art, mixing Arabic calligraphy with Art Nouveau.  This article describes the battle to save this heritage of Syrian Jewry.

Tel Aviv Port – 4 million visitors a year.  If you haven’t been to Tel Aviv Port’s entertainment hub along the Mediterranean Sea lately, watch this new video to see why it’s time for another visit.  More than four million visitors each year enjoy its eateries, coffee shops, stores, clubs and the Friday farmers’ market.

Atletico Madrid has Israeli sponsor.  Israeli online trading provider Plus500 will feature on the back of the shirts of Spanish soccer champions Atletico Madrid.  Plus500’s platform is based on proprietary technology, is accessible from multiple operating systems and has been translated into over 31 languages.


Kuwaiti Muslim is now an Israeli Jew.  After years of being educated to hate Jews, Mumtaz Halawa was shocked to learn he is Jewish. He changed his name to Mordechai, moved from Kuwait to Israel and settled in Jerusalem. 'I feel like Abraham,' he says.

Israeli police rescue faun from poachers.  As Israeli police were uncovering a weapons and drugs cache in Hebron, they heard noises and found a baby faun (a protected species) chained up inside a barrel.  The faun was transferred to the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo for medical treatment.  The poachers were arrested.

From China to the IDF.  Moshe Li, Gideon Fan and Yonatan Xue are the first Jews from the Chinese Kaifeng community to enlist in the IDF.  All three were born in the ancient Jewish community in Kaifeng. They immigrated to Israel some five years ago and recently completed their conversion and naturalization processes.

Baby Shani is now 18 years old.  Shani Winter was only 6 months old when her mother was killed while shielding her daughter with her body from a terrorist bomb in Tel Aviv. 18 years later, the policewoman who carried Shani from the wreckage is accompanied her as she joined the Israeli army.

Jump in – the water is warm!  LiAmi Lawrence just made Aliya and he encourages others to do likewise.

But wait until the snow clears!  Wintry weather has covered Jerusalem and Northern Israel in a white blanket.

“From Time Immemorial” lives on.  Former CBS news producer and renowned author on the subject of the Arab-Israeli conflict Joan Peters has died at the age of 76 but her unique legacy remains.  Her book “From Time Immemorial” analyzes thousands of British Mandate records that document the true history of pre-state Israel.


In the 4th Jan 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Israeli scientists have developed the basis for an artificial retina.
·        Israeli paramedics saved a Palestinian Arab baby who suffered a heart attack.
·        Per-capita, Israel is the world’s largest contributor to the fight against Ebola.
·        An Israeli startup has developed a portable solar power generator.
·        Israel has made large reductions to the prices of electricity, water and gasoline.
·        Low cost airline easyJet is starting a Paris to Tel Aviv service.
·        2014 saw 26,500 new immigrants to Israel – the highest in a decade.

·        Click here to see the newsletter on Jewish Business News.  Also on Israel Seen and in sections on United With Israel.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


Breakthrough in development of artificial retinas.  Scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv University have developed a wireless, light-sensitive, flexible implantable film that mimics the function of the photosensitive cells in the retina. It could potentially form part of a device to replace a damaged retina.

Cell analysis system makes first discovery.  Professor Itai Yanai of Israel’s Technion developed the CEL-Seq cell analysis method in 2012, identifying the on-off status of each of the 20,000 genes in a cell.  It has just been used to determine embryonic development sequences and could help in understanding how cancer develops.

3D compass in the brain.  Scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have demonstrated that brains of mammals (including humans) contain a 3D compass.  Microelectrode recordings revealed that certain neurons activate only when the head is at a particular 3D angle.  It explains conditions such as vertigo and disorientation.

Parkinson’s treatment trials success.  Israel’s NeuroDerm has announced positive results for its Phase II trials of ND0612H, intended for severe Parkinson’s disease patients. The results indicate that ND0612H may provide an effective alternative therapy to current treatments requiring surgery.

Personalized medical videos.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Israeli physician Dr. Rami Cohen has developed a proprietary platform for healthcare workers to easily create personalized instructional videos for patients. Telesofia Medical uses clips and graphics to generate videos in the time it takes to produce a prescription.

Beit Issie launches disabilities tech center.  On Dec 3rd (International Disabilities Day) Beit Issie Shapiro – Israel’s leading organization for developing therapies for disabled children – launched its Technology Consulting Center, to share its expertise in the field of disabilities and technology.  Also, an amazing video.


World’s first-ever e-storybooks with sign language.  The new eMotion Stories digital books by Israel’s Eyal Rosenthal, with English and American Sign Language, are the world’s first interactive bilingual e-library for parents of children with hearing impairment. They include Goldilocks, Cinderella, and Three Little Pigs.

200 salons collect hair for cancer patients.  More than 200 hair salons across Israel took part in the annual nationwide drive to collect hair for Zichron Menachem Cancer Support in Israel, in partnership with Pantene Products Israel. Hair salons provided free haircuts during the three-day marathon from November 24-26.

Bedouin schools flourish in the Negev.  (Thanks to UnitedWithIsrael) 130 Arab teenagers attend the Al-Sayed Technological School in the Northern Negev.  It is one of eight high schools operating for Bedouin students by the Israel Sci-Tech Schools Network.  “This school is excellent for us,” local tribe elder Alsyal Saleem said. “It gives the next generation of our tribe a chance to work thanks to the vocational studies in the school.”

IDF saves Palestinian Arab baby after he suffers heart attack.  Magen David Adom and IDF paramedics resuscitated a six-month-old Palestinian Arab baby after he collapsed at a Jordanian border crossing.  The baby was evacuated by IDF helicopter to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Ein Kerem hospital, to the delight of the parents.

Israel facilitates new Gaza Coca Cola plant.  Israel has allowed Gaza to import machinery to equip its first Coca Cola factory.  Israel allowed nine truckloads from Jordan to reach Gaza for an enterprise it hoped would provide jobs, by the end of 2015, for hundreds of people in the coastal territory.  Gaza already has a Pepsi plant.

IDF soldiers donate lunch to PA kids.  IDF paratroopers' hearts went out to two Palestinian Arab children who approached their post asking for food.  After seeing the kids searching dumpsters, the paratroopers decided to give them bread, meatballs, fruit, vegetables, hummus and snacks that they had bought for their own lunch.

Israel has improved Palestinian Arab health.  (Thanks to Hazel) Evidence-based analysis concludes that Israeli policies have brought about measurable improvements in Palestinian health and welfare. See the facts on death rates, life expectancy, mortality (infant, maternal, perinatal), immunization coverage, nutrition etc.

Israel is the biggest contributor to the war on Ebola.  (Thanks to UnitedWithIsrael) “The U.S. Fund for UNICEF applauds Israel’s recent pledge of $8.75 million to halt the spread of Ebola in West Africa. This donation to the UN’s Ebola Response Multi-Partner Trust Fund represents the largest per-capita investment by any nation in efforts to combat the virus”.

Israeli aid to the Philippines.  This may seem an old headline, but it relates to the recent Philippines typhoon Hagupit (Ruby).  An emergency response team of IsraAID and IsraAID Philippines (the local partner agency) has been providing medical, psychological, social and material relief goods in the Can-Avid municipality.


Oxford Uni launches British-Israeli water initiative.  Professor Andrew Hamilton, Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, launched the British Council in Israel's Water Research Initiative, to fund opportunities for researchers from Britain and Israel to work with researchers in countries facing water challenges.

An astronaut’s view of Israel.  Some crystal-clear photos of Israel from the International Space Station.  It received over 33,000 likes.

Portable solar power.  (Thanks to SDM and NoCamels.com) Israel’s Kalisaya has developed the KaliPAK – a portable renewable power solution.  It generates solar energy that can be used by campers and trekkers or as an emergency backup generator in case of natural disasters.  Kalisaya is hoping to raise £250,000 on Kickstarter.

KeyBoots finds work for extended holidays.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Israelis enjoy traveling.  So it was natural for Moshik Cohen to develop KeyBoots (a play on words similar to Kibbutz).  Now when backpackers run out of funds, Keyboots can help them get food and accommodation in exchange for voluntary work.

The pocket printer is on the move.  Here is a new video of the portable robot printer from Israel’s ZUtA Labs.  ZUtA expects to start shipping the printer in June.

TwitterMate – just for the important messages.  Tomer Simon, a Ph.D. student at Ben Gurion University’s Department of Emergency Medicine, has developed a system called TwitterMate, a tool for archiving and classifying information on social media.  It records specific hashtags, users or subjects for later analysis.

Israel’s most outstanding public building.  Tel Aviv University’s Capsule Building received 1st place (in the public buildings category) at the Israeli Association of Builders' Excellence Awards. The building was chosen for its design, quality and compatibility to the local environment.


Cheaper electricity, water and gasoline.  Israel’s electricity rate is being cut by 9.4% with effect from January thanks to the natural gas from the Tamar reservoir.  Water rates are being reduced by 10% effective from 1st Jan 2015.  Gasoline prices were also cut by 10%.

Mutual support between Indiana and Israel.  US State of Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence undertook a nine-day trip to Israel, which included an “economic development mission to bring jobs and investment to Indiana.”  Governor Pence expressed his view that support for Israel in the US has never been stronger.

Zaatar chocolate wins international gold.  Israel’s Ika Cohen shared a gold medal at the International Chocolate Awards in London.  Ika Chocolate’s zaatar truffle won a joint gold medal in the “flavored dark ganaches and truffles” section of the competition.

Strengthening Indo-Israeli ties.  Experts at the seventh India Israel Forum – the Indo-Israel Innovation Colloquium in Mumbai – explored further ties between the two nations in innovation, information technology, healthcare, water technology, renewable energy, wellness and engineering sectors. 

Making it “easy” to fly from France to Israel.  Low cost carrier easyJet plc will launch a new direct route between Tel Aviv Ben Gurion airport and Paris Charles de Gaulle airport, starting 30th March 2015.  Ticket prices for the flights on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays start from 45.99 Euros one-way.


Sarona - Tel Aviv’s newest leisure and culture oasis.  Just across from Tel Aviv’s Azrieli towers, the former German Templer colony of Sarona has been revitalized and landscaped to include playgrounds and parks.  33 residences dating from 1871 have been renovated and converted into eateries, upscale shops and art galleries.

Recycling is a “hit” with Israelis.  This youtube film promoting awareness of recycling in Israel by the Tamir recycling corporation has had almost 900,000 views.  No wonder - it features some phenomenally accurate precision ways to dispose of recyclable containers and plastic bottles. 

Music and food bring peace to Jerusalem.  Watch 2000 young Jews and Arabs gathering together at November’s “Simply Singing” event in Jerusalem.  In addition to the music, poetry and dancing, two chefs, one Arab-Israeli, the other Jewish-Israeli worked together to create fusion dishes that reflected both cultures.

But is it art?  Jerusalem's annual winter festival, "Hamshushalayim," which takes place over four consecutive weekends, includes an unusual exhibition displayed among supermarket shelves.  The exhibition, "Mivtza" ("sale" in Hebrew), seeks to examine the meeting between modern art and a familiar daily space.

Hollywood movie of Israeli’s jungle survival.  US actor Kevin Bacon is to star in “Jungle” based on the true story of Israeli adventurer Yossi Ghinsberg, who was lost in the Amazon rainforest for three weeks in 1981.  "Back to Tuichi" was one of Israel’s most popular books in the 1990s. It has been translated into 15 languages.


Underwater village discovered near Haifa.  (Thanks to David and Israel21c) A water well that may be the oldest wooden structure ever found, and the oldest evidence of an ancient olive-oil industry, are among the preserved remains of a prehistoric village discovered underwater by Israeli researchers off the coast of Haifa.

Aliya at highest level for a decade.  Around 26,500 new immigrants arrived in Israel in 2014 marking a 32% increase over last year and a ten-year high.  Nearly 7,000 French arrived – more than double the 3,400 in 2013.  Immigration from the Ukraine increased by 190% to 5,840 in 2014.

Take the Israel Course.  Explore Israel’s past and future with “The Israel Course” a 7-Part film series designed to reinforce your understanding of Israel’s history and future. Be pro-active in Israel’s miraculous narrative.  http://www.theisraelcourse.com/unitedwithisrael/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJmja7T2gzw

The great escape.  Three rare white rhinos at Israel’s Ramat Gan Safari took advantage of a dozing guard and an open gate to explore the safari’s car park.  Fortunately, Rhianna and her friends couldn’t find a suitable vehicle in which to make a complete getaway.  (They should have chosen a Range Rover or Nissan Prairie!)