Israel's Good News Newsletter to 26th Dec 21

 

In the 26th Dec 21 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

 

·       An Israeli treatment for Parkinson’s has successfully finished trials.

·       Israel is the only Middle Eastern country where Christians are thriving.

·       Israeli nanomaterials are reshaping the manufacturing industry.

·       The UAE hosted an event in its Embassy to showcase Israeli technology.

·       An Israeli woman has won Israel’s first World Championship swimming gold medals.

·       Three major archaeological discoveries in Israel.

 

·       Click here to see the 19th Dec newsletter on IsraelSeen, Ruthfully Yours, IsraPundit and United With Israel with extra feature on Jewish State (with 2,300 shares).  The newsletter also featured in the Israel Bonds International newsletter (see here). TY Sandra for the German translation here, and posted by Stuart Palmer here. Also, 12th Nov (TY Zachy) in Hebrew (here). Please pass on this newsletter to German and Hebrew-speaking contacts. Also (TY Esty) please visit the https://www.facebook.com/verygoodnewsIL Facebook page.

 

·       Please click here, to donate (a small or large amount) to help me publicize VeryGoodNewsIsrael.

 

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ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS

 

Covid is not what it seems. Scientists at Israel’s Ben Gurion University have found that coronavirus patients have damaged mitochondria in the blood, but not in the lungs. They now urge a medical re-think, in that it is the immune system that needs treating and that antioxidants may be more effective than respiratory medications.  

https://www.timesofisrael.com/israeli-study-urges-rethink-of-covids-nature-indicates-antioxidants-may-help/

 

Amorphous calcium to treat Covid-19. (TY Hazel) 18 COVID-19 patients hospitalized with moderate or severe symptoms were treated with Amor-18 from Israel’s Amorphical (see here previously). All recovered and were discharged in a few days. https://www.jpost.com/health-and-wellness/coronavirus/article-689543  

https://www.amorphical.com/ongoing-clinical-research/

 

Parkinson’s treatment success. (TY Hazel) Israel’s Pharma Two B (see here in 2015) has successfully completed the Phase 3 human trial of its P2B001 treatment for Parkinson’s Disease. The trial met its primary and key secondary endpoints, and the company can now prepare for US FDA approval.

https://www.jpost.com/health-and-wellness/article-689352

 

$5 million grant to test Alzheimer’s treatment. Israel’s ImmunoBrain Checkpoint (see here previously) has been awarded a grant of $5 million over 3 years to support human clinical trials of IBC-Ab002, for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Development was based on Weizmann Institute immune system studies.

https://www.weizmann-usa.org/news-media/in-the-news/immunobrain-checkpoint-awarded-5-million-us-nia-grant-for-phase-1b-alzheimer-s-disease/  

 

Monitoring babies’ hearts at home. (TY Hazel) The partnership between Israel’s Datos Health and Israel’s Sheba Medical Center has progressed to at-home monitoring of babies born with complex heart malformations. Babies monitored include in the Palestinian Authority, Gaza, Iraq, Kurdistan, and Cyprus.

https://www.israel21c.org/babies-with-fragile-hearts-now-can-be-monitored-remotely/  

https://datos-health.com/

 

Link between sleep and the gut. Scientists at Haifa University and the Technion Institute have found a link between bacteria in the gut and sleep patterns.  Those that eat fatty foods tend to be night owls, whereas those that have a high fiber diet tend to be early risers.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/gut-tweak-can-make-everyone-a-morning-person-israeli-poop-analysis-suggests/  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34695305/

 

3D digital X-ray imaging. Israel’s Nanox (see here previously) has delivered the first of its next-generation X-ray machines to Israel’s Shamir Medical Center in Tzifrin. The Nanox.ARC uses low-radiation X-rays to produce high-resolution 3-D digital images, previously only available from expensive CT scans.

https://www.jpost.com/health-and-wellness/first-in-world-pilot-of-new-x-ray-machine-to-fast-diagnose-covid-pneumonia-687614

 

Preventing errors in the ICU. The virtual reality simulator from Israel’s DecideVR identifies decision-making errors by doctors in medical treatment in intensive care units (ICU). The platform, developed by Professor Alex Mintz, formerly of Herzliya’s Reichman University, currently focuses on life-saving cardiovascular decisions.

https://www.calcalistech.com/ctech/articles/0,7340,L-3925317,00.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1juJL6YSX0

 

Helping to tackle infertility in the UK. Israel’s AiVF (see here previously) has received regulatory approval to sell its IVF analysis platform product in the United Kingdom - one of the largest IVF markets in Europe. It can predict, without the need for a biopsy, whether a given embryo is genetically suitable for transfer.

https://worldisraelnews.com/israeli-tech-to-help-tackle-infertility-in-uk/

 

The selfie that could save your life. Israel’s Binah.ai (see here previously) has come a long way in the last 18 months. Some 50 million customers of the world’s top insurance companies now use Binah’s remote health and wellness monitoring platform to measure vital signs, from the changes in the reflection of light on facial skin.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/spotlight/this-selfie-could-save-your-life/

 

 

ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL

 

Second “special” brother joins IDF. Ittai graduated from Lotem Special Education School in Rehovot last year and, thanks to “Special in Uniform”, has just been inducted into the Israel Defense Forces. His brother Roi, who has cerebral palsy, joined the IDF five years ago and managed the medical clinic in one of the IDF bases.

https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/317628

 

Helping Ethiopian Israelis access higher education. (TY I24 News) Since it began in 1994, Israeli foundation Hanan Aynor has given scholarships and funding for higher education fees to 4,500 Israelis of Ethiopian origin. It also gives priority to older people, for whom it might soon be too late to enroll, as well as to single mothers.

https://unitedwithisrael.org/watch-organization-helps-ethiopian-israelis-reach-their-potential/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITe92zeuPwg

 

The first female Military Secretary. (TY JNS & WIN) Intelligence officer Col. N. is the first woman to be appointed Military Secretary to the Israeli President and will be promoted to Brigadier-General. She has served 22 years in the IDF Intelligence Corps. The previous Military Secretary was an Israeli Druze (see here).

https://www.israelhayom.com/2021/12/21/herzogs-pick-for-military-secretary-makes-history/

 

Five new female foreign Ambassadors. Israeli President Isaac Herzog has received the credentials of the new ambassadors from five countries, including close friends of Israel - El Salvador, Malta, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Nauru. All five are women.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/herzog-receives-credentials-of-5-new-female-ambassadors/

 

84% of Christians happy in Israel. Some 182,000 Christians live in Israel – 1.4% more than in 2020. They comprise about 1.9% of the State of Israel’s population. And contrary to some recent negative stories in the Mainstream Media, 84% of Christians said they were satisfied with their life. 

https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/319029

https://honestreporting.com/israeli-wednesday-merry-christmas-and-a-happy-new-year/

 

Christmas trees. The Jerusalem Municipality has again distributed free Christmas trees to Jerusalem residents celebrating Christmas. And KKL-JNF (Jewish National Fund) supplied 108 trees to 27 embassies, consulates, and foreign missions in Israel. The trees came from environmentally managed groves in the Galilee.

https://www.jerusalem.muni.il/en/newsandarticles/municipality-news/christmas-trees-distribution/

https://www.jpost.com/christian-news/kkl-knf-spreads-holiday-cheer-to-christians-across-israel-688821

 

Arab and Haredi women create a startup. Arab Moslem Amira Jabar Qassem and Haredi Jew Hani Sabag co-founded Israel’s Job 360, to train Arabs and Haredim in interview techniques for hi-tech jobs. Their website allows job seekers to simulate interviews. This article describes both their professional and private relationship.

https://www.israelhayom.com/2021/11/23/an-arab-and-a-haredi-jew-walk-into-a-job-interview/

 

Israel leads international cyber training event. Israel led a 10-day simulation of a sophisticated cyberattack on the world’s financial system to learn how to minimize the potential damage to banks and financial markets. Participants included the US, UK, UAE, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, the IMF, and the World Bank.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-said-to-lead-10-country-simulation-of-major-cyberattack-on-world-markets/

 

British army receives Israeli night vision systems. (TY Hazel) Israel’s Elbit Systems has delivered the first tranche of its lightweight micro binocular XACT Night Vision Goggles to the British Army. They were manufactured at Elbit Systems’ UK subsidiary.

https://defence-blog.com/british-army-receives-compact-night-vision-systems/

 

UN passes another Israeli-proposed resolution. Israel is the recognized global leader in technology to conquer world hunger. 135 countries chose to partner with Israel in its United Nations proposal to promote access and use of advanced agricultural technologies to developing countries and drought-stricken areas.

https://www.jns.org/israels-un-resolution-on-sustainable-agricultural-technology-passes-with-landslide-majority/  https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/317448

 

Aid to the Philippines. (TY Hazel) The Embassy of Israel in the Philippines has sent food packs, hygiene kits, and NUF water purifiers to the victims of Typhoon Odette in Bohol and Cebu. It also sent solar energy systems to provide electrical power to some 2,000 typhoon-hit families. The storm has displaced some 600,000 people

https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/12/23/21/israel-sends-aid-to-odette-victims-in-bohol-cebu

 

 

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

 

NIS 20 million for energy projects. Israel’s Energy Ministry is giving grants worth NIS 20 million for 16 projects to develop energy storage prototypes. They include 11 lithium battery projects and two hydrogen initiatives. One project is a combined solar panel and storage system for Bedouin farmers.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/energy-ministry-directs-6-3-million-in-grants-for-16-energy-storage-prototypes/

 

Modi’in - Israel’s next tech city. Built in the 1990s and branded as “the city of the future,” Modi’in is ranked 10th in Israel on StartupBlink’s Start-up Ecosystem list, and 627 worldwide, for tech ecosystem size, quality, and ease of doing business. Advantages include location, transport links and young English-speaking residents.

https://www.jpost.com/jpost-tech/modiin-evolving-as-israels-new-tech-hub-685360

 

The future materialized. Israel’s Nemo Nanomaterials is producing game-changing nanomaterials that can transform products in industries such as automotive, electronics, textile, construction, telecom, energy, and aerospace. The startup is already working with 10 large companies, including multi-billion-dollar corporations.

https://jewishbusinessnews.com/2021/12/16/israeli-startup-nemo-emerges-from-stealth-to-industrialize-nanomaterials/    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EpSIrj9HKIA

 

Another Israeli-led vertical farm. Infarm, led by Israelis Osnat Michaeli, Erez and Guy Galonska, distributed their 25sqm “vertical crop farm on a platform” to hundreds of supermarkets across Europe. Each can grow over 65 kinds of herbs and vegetables and said to be more than 400 times more efficient than land-based agriculture.

https://forbes.co.il/e/the-agriculture-cloud/   https://www.infarm.com/

 

Pizza-making robots. The Pizza Hut chain (see here previously) has many branches in Israel. One branch is soon going to be run entirely by robots. Udi Shamai, owner of Pizza Hut Israel and CEO of Hyper Food Robotics, explains how the technology works and why robot-made fast food is the future.

https://unitedwithisrael.org/watch-israels-pizza-hut-to-open-branch-run-by-robots/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0i5izZG0HQ

 

Mastering sweetness. Israel’s B.T. Sweet has unveiled Cambya™, a plant-based sugar replacer for multiple food applications. The proprietary formula is based on soluble fibers, monk fruit, and select botanicals.

https://www.cambya.com/

 

Spearheading sustainable packaging.  More news about the sustainable packaging from Israel’s Melodea (see here previously). Its wood pulp-based, compostable, recyclable, and completely non-toxic products include MelOx™ and VBcoat™ that protect packaged goods while eliminating the need for aluminum and plastic.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/melodea-spearheads-new-era-in-sustainable-packaging-301437846.html  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbqqL5bMTBc

 

Reasons to be cheerful at end of 2021. (TY Nicky Blackburn & UWI) Israel21c’s summary of Israeli achievements in 2021 includes some facts new to this newsletter. It’s healthy to interact with plants; Israel’s TurboGen’s micro-turbines to power buildings; and WaveBL & DockTech improving the supply chain.

https://www.israel21c.org/21-reasons-to-be-cheerful-at-the-end-of-2021/

 

 

ECONOMY & BUSINESS

 

Unemployment down again. The rate of unemployment in Israel in the second half of November 2021 fell to 4.3% from 4.7% in the first half of November. Many of the 143,000+ job vacancies are for software developers and computer engineers.

https://en.globes.co.il/en/article-unemployment-in-israel-continues-sharp-decline-1001395250

 

Tax relief for hi-tech returnees. Israel is upgrading its tax-benefit program to attract Israeli high-tech workers currently living abroad, to help resolve Israel’s workforce shortage. They will pay no taxes for two years on passive income and capital gains earned outside Israel. They can also deduct expenses incurred in returning.

https://www.jns.org/israel-promotes-tax-relief-program-for-immigrants-to-attract-high-tech-workers/

 

$100 million to advance hydrogen tech. Israel plans to spend NIS 100 million over five years on a national institute for hydrogen production and storage. It has also established a pilot hydrogen filling station in northern Israel and will open the first commercial hydrogen filling station for trucks next year in the Haifa Bay area.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/energy-ministry-budgets-nis-100-million-to-advance-hydrogen-tech/

 

Business forum in UAE’s Tel Aviv embassy. The United Arab Emirates hosted a first-of-its-kind business conference on Israeli technology and innovation, in the UAE’s Israel embassy. Some 200 people attended the summit, including a UAE delegation led by two UAE ministers.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/uae-embassy-in-israel-hosts-first-of-its-kind-business-innovation-forum/

 

University to fund dozens more startups. Tel Aviv University’s Venture Capital arm has raised another $50m (see first fund here in 2018) to invest in early-stage Israeli startups. It plans to invest up to $1 million in 15-25 companies founded by Israeli entrepreneurs. All the investors from 2018 have reinvested in the new fund.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/tel-aviv-universitys-vc-arm-raises-50m-to-invest-in-startups/

 

It’s all happening in the kitchen. (TY JNS) The Kitchen (see here previously), established in 2015, is Israel’s first FoodTech incubator. It now has 22 portfolio companies cooking up innovations to feed the world more efficiently, sustainably, and securely. Israel’s agri-tech knowhow is making breakthroughs on a global scale.

https://www.israel21c.org/israelis-are-master-chefs-of-food-innovation-heres-why/

 

A VAST new development center. Israel’s VAST Data (see here previously) has opened a new center in the city of Haifa, an addition to its main development center in Tel Aviv. It seeks to recruit graduates from the North of Israel, so the new facility is located close to Haifa University.

https://www.calcalistech.com/ctech/articles/0,7340,L-3923834,00.html

 

Helping entrepreneurs in Judea & Samaria. Israeli non-profit Bikurim develops and delivers technology tools that family-run small businesses in Judea and Samaria need to grow. It subsidizes the cost of web design, helps fund marketing materials, and promotes businesses through an online directory.

https://www.jns.org/israeli-startup-helps-businesses-in-judea-samaria-navigate-economic-and-political-challenges/

 

Israeli mergers and acquisitions: Israel’s Ness Technologies is acquiring Israel’s DXC Technology for $65 million combining 5,000 employees.

 

Investment in Israeli startups: Innovid raised $251 million (IPO); PlainID raised $75 million; Greeneye raised $22 million;

 

 

CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`

 

Love Jerusalem. (TY Sharon) Positive things to share from Jerusalem’s streets include - daily prayers outside the Mamilla Mall; the Knesset Museum project; the Prime Minister’s street is open; seasonal decorations and market; children; Temech conference for businesswomen; winter festivals and Teddy Park’s musical fountains.

http://rjstreets.com/2021/12/19/10-things-to-love-about-jerusalem/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UeorwuMziM

 

Jerusalem’s Sacher Park is upgraded. One of the highlights in The Jerusalem Streets is the improved Sacher Park. The municipality has upgraded the infrastructure, improved accessibility, and is even adding Wi-Fi. New features include a unique playground, running trails, sports fields, security cameras and a dog garden.

https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/317444

 

Israel’s first truly green hotel. The Six Senses hotel in Shaharut, near Ovda airport in the Negev, is the first hotel in Israel to receive the American Green Building Council approval for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). It also complies with the Israeli standard for green construction.

https://www.jpost.com/must/must-join/israeli-hotel-becomes-first-in-world-to-achieve-leed-standards-687489

https://www.sixsenses.com/en/resorts/shaharut

 

New Israeli stamps. (TY JR) Jacob has updated his website of Israeli stamps to include Waterfalls (Banyas, David, and En Avdat); Foot and mouth painting; Israel-Czech Republic Joint Issue; and “With Thanks to All Those Fighting COVID-19”.  https://jr.co.il/stamps/index-2021.html

 

Israel’s first ever World swimming golds. Israel’s Anastasia Gorbenko (see here previously) won Israel’s first two World Swimming Championships gold medals in Abu Dhabi.  The 18-year-old won the women’s 50m breaststroke final and the women’s 100-meter medley final. Hear Hatikvah in the UAE.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/anastasia-gorbenko-wins-israels-1st-ever-world-swimming-championships-gold/   https://www.israel21c.org/gorbenko-wins-two-gold-medals-for-israel-in-world-championships/

 

 

THE JEWISH STATE

 

Look what they found in the garbage. (TY JNS) A marble sarcophagus lid dating back some 1,900 years has been rescued from a garbage dump site in Ashkelon. The Roman-era artifact, which weighs some two tons, is believed to have been unearthed at a construction site and discarded on an illegal trash heap.

https://www.israelhayom.com/2021/12/21/antiquities-inspectors-find-1900-year-old-sarcophagus-lid-in-dump/

 

Discovered underwater. Marine archaeologists have uncovered ancient artifacts off the coast of Caesarea, many dating back to the third century CE. They include a gemstone engraved with a lyre (like King David’s harp). Also, a gold ring engraved with a shepherd boy, plus a hoard of gold coins from the Mamluk period.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/underwater-treasure-1700-year-old-coins-among-shipwrecked-items-found-off-caesarea/

 

Unearthing Yavne. (TY WIN & UWI) Remains of a building and a cemetery containing Jewish relics from the time of the Sanhedrin have been uncovered in Yavne. They date from the 1st century CE when the Jewish legislative assembly relocated after the Romans destroyed the capital Jerusalem and the 2nd Temple in 70 CE.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/in-first-sanhedrin-era-building-found-in-yavne-where-assembly-fled-temples-ruin/  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-Oaj_ETEpM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfvkBKtrYaY

 

Ukraine to recognize Jerusalem as capital. Ukraine’s Ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk stated that his country recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s “one and only capital” and that a branch of its embassy would be opened there in the next year. Security issues are being finalized.

https://worldisraelnews.com/ukraine-to-recognize-jerusalem-as-israels-capitol/

https://www.jns.org/ukraine-recognizes-jerusalem-as-israels-capital-and-plans-to-move-embassy/

 

Awards for positively representing Israel. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs held a “Light Ceremony” to present awards to personalities who excel in their professional arena while promoting Israel’s image in the media and on social networks. They include Idan Raichel, Lior Suchard, Netta Barzilai and Sivan Yaari.

https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/317942

 

Helping communities navigate the pandemic. The Jewish Agency for Israel is marking the first anniversary of JReady, a unique platform for emergency preparedness, response, and rehabilitation created to address the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. JReady now reaches 39 countries with its crisis management training.

https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/317987   https://www.jready.org/

 

Hebrew language day. (TY Jacob Richman) Israel marks Hebrew Language Day on 21 of Tevet - the birthday of Eliezer Ben Yehuda, the father of modern spoken Hebrew. This year, the date corresponds to Dec 25, 2021. Jacob Richman here publicizes the Hebrew quizzes that Israeli dairy company Tnuva prints on milk cartons.

https://jr.co.il/only-in-israel/learning-hebrew-words-from-milk-cartons.htm