Israel's Good News Newsletter to 3rd Dec 23


In the 3rd Dec 23 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·       Heroic action by Israel’s first all-female tank crews.

·       In clinical trials, new Israeli treatment cures liver cancer patient.

·       14 Israelis awarded European research grants.

·       Israeli pen reads handwritten text to the visually impaired.

·       Israeli startups improve road safety and reduce traffic congestion.

·       Israeli soccer players won’t take “no” for an answer.

·       The IDF prepare to celebrate Hannukah in Gaza.


·       Click here to see the 26th Nov newsletter on IsraelSeen and Ruthfully Yours. Also (TY Sandra) for translating it into German here.  Please forward this newsletter to German-speaking contacts. Also (TY Esty) please visit the Facebook page.


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Female tank crews save kibbutzim. (TY Manfred) On Oct 7 Israel’s all-female tank crews made history when they fought Hamas terrorists and prevented them from overrunning many Israeli southern communities. They are the first female armored crews in Israel, and perhaps the world, to participate in active battle.

The farmer who neutralized a Hamas cell. Eran Smilansky was a member of Kibbutz Nir Oz’s emergency squad. On Oct 7, he eliminated eight Hamas terrorists who had stormed his home. He then saved his father and his two daughters at his father’s home that the terrorists had tried to burn down with his family inside.


Eritrean given residency for saving life. Eritrean national Mulugeta Tsagi received permanent residency status in Israel as a “thank you” for saving an Israeli soldier’s life on Oct. 7. Tsagi gave lifesaving first aid to an IDF officer shot by Hamas in Sderot, then stayed with him for several hours until he finally reached hospital.


What’s cooking? Beraha Astruk is a Head Nurse at Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya. After work, she voluntarily spends her evenings and weekends cooking for two IDF battalions stationed near the northern border. She even invites the soldiers to do their laundry at her house. Beraha has two sons in the IDF in Gaza.


Care for released hostages. (TY Cynthia) Schneider Children's Hospital is THE hospital designated to receive many of the released children and their families. It has a media-free area, decorated recovery rooms, a multi-disciplinary team of medical and support staff, even family pets are allowed. See photos & donation links here. (UK donors) (Israeli & US donors)


Late birthday present for released hostage. On his 9th birthday, Ohad Munder was a hostage in Gaza. He was told that his favorite soccer team, Hapoel Be’er Sheva, wished him a happy birthday on TV. It gave Ohad renewed strength and on his release, the players visited him in hospital.


Entrepreneur raises $40 million for IDF. Since Oct 7, Dutch-based Israeli entrepreneur Eran Efrat, has raised some $40 million to produce tactical gear for IDF soldiers. He didn’t simply give the money to the army but directly solicited US-based manufacturers to produce helmets, ceramic vests, and more.





Liver cancer patient saved. A patient with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer) who participated in the Phase II trials of namodenoson from Israel’s Can-Fite (see here previously) had an extremely good response. His liver function returned to normal, and he is looking forward to a good quality of life.


Traffic lights to silence cancer genes. (TY Laura) Scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have discovered how DNA methylation acts as a gene control system, like a traffic light that can modulate gene activity and trigger or prevent cancer mutations. It will help develop personalized therapies for cancer patients.


Clearing the airways. The LibAirty compression vest from Israel’s Synchrony Medical (see here previously) has begun clinical (human) trials at the National Cystic Fibrosis Center of Sheba Medical Center, where it was developed. Synchrony’s CEO says the device is twice as effective as similar products currently on the market.


Amorphous calcium to treat IBD. Israel’s Amorphical (see here previously) has adapted its amorphous calcium carbonate production technology to treat inflammatory diseases such as Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and arthritis. The mineral neutralizes the acidity within affected tissue to prevent inflammation.


Developing RNA-based treatments for rare diseases. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Skip Therapeutics is partnering with Sheba Medical Center to develop ASO-based (short RNA sequences) treatments for rare genetic diseases. Skip's ASOs (Antisense Oligonucleotide) aim to restore the function of mutated genes in genetic disorders.





Bedouin IDF Major released from hospital. Major Foaz Hussein, a Bedouin Arab tracker in the Paran Brigade, was released from Emek Medical Center after receiving treatment for gunshot wounds received fighting terrorists on Oct 7th in Kibbutz Holit. He saved many lives before being wounded himself.  


Israelis win European research grants. (TY Nevet) 14 Israeli university teams have won prestigious European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grants. 6 went to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (total NIS 47 million) and 4 to the Weizmann Institute.  Only some 300 grants were awarded of 2,000+ applications.


US invests in Iron Beam. $1.2 billion of the US’s latest aid package to Israel is to help finance Israel’s Iron Beam laser defense system (see here previously). The US hopes that trials of the system will eventually also benefit the US army. Iron Beam will significantly reduce the cost of intercepting short-range threats.


Doctors on call. (TY Hazel) The many overseas volunteers to Israel include American ER doctors Dr. Dov Frankel and Dr. Barry Hahn, going to work at Ashkelon’s Barzilai hospital. They came via the Emergency Volunteers Project, a disaster-relief organization that recruits volunteer emergency responders in times of crisis.


Malawi sends farm reinforcements. (TY Hazel) A first flight carrying 221 young men left Malawi for Israel on Saturday and more are to be sent soon. They will work on farms in "fit and safe" environments and locations. Israel recently granted Malawi a $60 million aid package to help it recover from an economic crisis,





New tech to rehabilitate the wounded. Israel’s Sheba Medical Center has selected 8 tech solutions for its new program for rehabilitating wounded soldiers. Israeli systems include COGNIShine and 6Degrees (MyMove – see here previously).


Robotics course for evacuees. Israel’s Technion Institute held a 6-day program in robophysics (how robots move in the real world) for 30 outstanding high school students evacuated from their northern border homes. The course included enrichment activities and mentoring for future university entrance.


A good read. Israel’s OrCam (see here previously) has launched “Read 3” to help those with impaired vision.  About the size of a highlighter pen, it can magnify text and read multiple types (even handwriting) in 17 different languages, including words printed in a newspaper or the ingredients listed on a food packet.


Waging war on secret terrorist funding. Israel’s Lionsgate Network has located $90 million in Hamas-owned crypto wallets and is searching for billions more. Meanwhile, Israel's National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing has frozen 143 Tron wallets connected to terrorist organizations between July and October.


3D printers to ensure safer CT scanning. Israel’s Stratasys (see here previously) is to produce tailored 3D models for Germany’s Siemens Healthineers. The models will be used to calibrate Siemens’ CT scanners to ensure correct functioning and to help medical practitioners assess the radiation dose and image quality.


Automatic parking & recharging. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Innovation Authority funding 50% of the NIS 1.2 million cost of a pilot solution by Israel’s Charging Robotics for wireless recharging of electric vehicles in automated parking systems. The vehicles will be robotically parked in facilities managed by Israel’s Parkomot.


Best use of AI award. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Rescana has won the prestigious CISO's Connect CISO Choice award for Best Use of AI.  Rescana’s risk management solution identifies issues with third-party vendors by collecting and analyzing massive datasets. A company’s operators do not require any coding skills.


Car of the future award. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Arbe Robotics (see here previously) has won the Self-Driving Industry 2023 Award in the hardware category from Cars of the Future for its Perception Radar.





Ensuring safer driving in Italy. Italy’s System Logistics, manufacturer of global automated warehousing, is piloting Israel’s SaverOne (see here previously) on several vehicles in its fleet. SaverOne prevents drivers from texting or using other distracting apps. The system is already being used by Italian vehicle manufacturer Iveco.


Easing traffic congestion in Pittsburg. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Axilion (see here previously) is to help optimize traffic flow along the heavily congested Railroad Avenue corridor in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania USA.


Better security at railway stations. (TY OurCrowd) Israel Railways is integrating the AI-powered security screening system from Israel’s SeeTrue (see here previously) at checkpoints in Israel's largest stations where more than 1,000 bags are screened every hour.


Your drone delivery is on its way. (TY OurCrowd) Drone delivery customers of Israel’s Flytrex now include Chick-fil-A restaurants (in 3 US States), Walmart, Starbucks, Chili’s, Little Caesars, Raising Cane's, Papa Johns, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, and Unilever's The Ice Cream Shop.


140,000 remote care devices to Madrid. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Essence SmartCare (see here previously) has delivered 140,000 Care@Home senior monitoring devices to satisfy its winning the tender as the sole provider of senior care technology for over 100,000 seniors in the Madrid region.


A fund for brain science startups. (TY Atid-EDI) Israel’s Corundum Neuroscience (was Joy Ventures – see here previously) invests in startups developing neuroscience solutions. It aims to promote new treatments for anxiety, depression, PTSD, chronic pain, sleep, and neurodegenerative disorders.


Israel Resilience Fund. Israel’s OurCrowd is spearheading the Israel Resilience Fund (IRF) to bolster Israeli startups during the war against Hamas. The $50M fund will invest in 50+ Israeli companies developing vital solutions in the South and North that need funding due to employee call-ups. No management fees!


Nearly $1 billion Investments & M&As. Since Oct 7, both investments and mergers & acquisitions have reached nearly $1 billion. 29 investment rounds totaled nearly $1 billion, led by Next Insurance’s $265 million raise. Meanwhile, Palo Alto’s two Israeli cyber acquisitions (Talon & Dig) cost them a total of $975 million.


Cyber security for Finance of America. Israel’s Spera Security (see here previously) have been chosen by Finance of America to bolster its defense against identity-driven cyberattacks.


Exits, takeovers, and mergers – to 3/12/23: Finish giant Aiven has acquired Israel’s database optimization startup EverSQL. Israel’s Gilat Satellite Networks has acquired US secure communications company DataPath.


Investment in Israeli startups – to 3/12/23: CapitalOS raised $39 million; Tabnine raised $25 million; Munch raised $7.2 million.





Where have all the flowers come from? A symbol of hope and renewal blossomed in the Re’im forest - new life in the form of autumn wildflowers. “See the regeneration of nature in one of the greatest disaster areas that the State of Israel has known,” said Amir Balaban, of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel.


World Illustration award winners. In the 2023 World Illustration Awards competition of the Association of Illustrators, Israel’s Orit Bergman and Anat Warshavsky were overall professional winners and first in the Site-Specific category. Israel’s Stav Assis won a new talent award. Only 20 of the 5,000 illustrators won prizes.  


New Israeli stamps. (TY Jacob Richman) Latest (Dec 2023) issue of Israeli stamps includes Springs in Israel, Early wine industry in the Land of Israel, Israel-Guatemala 75 years of friendship, 75 years of printing Israeli stamps, and Israel’s national parks (Baram & Nimrod Fortress).


Wait for it. (TY IsraPundit) “The Genius of Israel”, Dan Senor and Saul Singer’s follow-up to their 2009 international bestseller “Start-Up Nation”, was written, edited, and ready for publication but the Oct 7 events put it on hold. Here is Bret Stephen’s review and despite the somewhat untimely title, be patient and uplifted.


Seeds of Hope. KKL-JNF is offering a relaxing, meaningful nature activity for young members of communities in the Golan that have not been evacuated. In its “Seeds of Hope” initiative, volunteers sort rare seeds stored in the Shamir Research Institute for Science, and plant them nearby. Some 60 schools have enrolled.


Women’s soccer success. (TY Hazel) Israeli Arab Marian Awad scored the opening goal in Israel’s 2-0 win against Kazakhstan. Israel beat Armenia 4-0 in the Women’s Nations League (see the goals). Israel’s U17 women’s team defeated Andorra 7-0, and Latvia 2-0 in the 2024 Euro qualifiers.


Martial artists. Israel’s Jujitsu team won 12 medals at the European championships in Croatia - more than any other team. And at the World kickboxing championships, Druze-Israeli Monia Heno won a silver medal.


Silent protest. Europe’s soccer ruling body UEFA distastefully refused to allow the Israeli and Polish teams to observe a moment’s silence for the victims of Oct 7 before their Under-21 European Championship match. So, when the referee blew his whistle to start the game, nobody moved!  Very moving for the rest of us, though.





Donated organs save more lives. Last week’s newsletter included news of the six people saved by the organs of fallen soldier Yehonatan Semo / Samo (see here previously). This week he is emulated by Amichai Rubin. Roi Nahari, Shoham Ben Harush, and Naaran Ashchar.


A Hanukkiah in Gaza. A group of Chabad IDF reservists erected a 15-foot 9-branch menorah in Beit Hanoun northern Gaza ready for the Jewish festival of Hannukah that begins on Thurs evening Dec 7. It is one of over a dozen Hannukah Menorahs that will be erected in Gaza, bringing light in the darkest places.


Jerusalem gives thanks. (TY Sharon) Israel’s capital celebrated Thanksgiving last week. Posters thanked residents for donating blood and volunteering. Tens of thousands of evacuees from the north and south, and farmers, were grateful to Jerusalemites for their hospitality. And lone soldiers enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner.


Be positive. UK Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis’ message from last week’s sedra is “Be Positive and never despair. “At this very moment when there is a tragic war in Israel, our prayer indeed is that Hashem will bless the Jewish people, and he will transform our darkness into light, and may this happen speedily and instantly.”


How to help Israel.  Here are some sites where newsletter readers can donate to Israeli organizations that provide vital help to Israelis at this difficult time.  Many thanks to those who have already contributed and to those who are helping by donating their own valuable time and resources.


Friends of the IDF (US donors):

or IDF Soldiers Fund in Israel:  (select the English speakers’ option)


American Friends of Magen David Adom (US donors):

or Magen David Adom (Israel):


Zaka (US donors):  or (Israeli donors):  

or (Canadian donors):


United Hatzalah:  or Canada

Leket Food Israel:

JNF USA -  or Canada

Orthodox Union -


Hadassah Hospital Israel:

Laniado Hospital (Netanya)


And many more charities here: (Warm winter clothes for Israeli soldiers)


Buy Israel Bonds to support the Jewish State. (TY Larry B)


Europe -

Canada -