Before I start I must apologize to my readers for the dearth of posts this week. Blame it on end-of-summeritis together with a general fed-upiness (yes, I love making up new words 🙂 ) with the political situation that never seems to change – unless it gets worse.
So to help counter my malaise I am very happy to get stuck in to a new Good News Friday post.
My first item is rather bittersweet but it leaves a good feeling at the end. See the following Facebook post (via Hadassah):
Here’s my free translation:
At 5 O’clock yesterday afternoon a remarkable event took place, one of those moving events that are so rare in these days that are full of kitsch and fake thrills.
To one spot in Jerusalem there gathered figures from the generation of the establishment of the state, elderly people, regular soldiers and reservists, for the ceremony marking the discovery of the grave of a fallen soldier whose burial site was missing for 67 years!!! Moshe Aharonov, born in Beirut, Lebanon, fell at the foot of the walls of Jerusalem and did not have the privilege of knowing that the Jewish nation state had arisen, but good people did not let his story be forgotten.
Not one media channel sent a representative. Maybe this isn’t flashy news, and it’s probably not suitable for promoting sales. But the eyes of everyone present glistened and their hearts beat faster as they felt deeply what a unique and good people we have. Even after so many years, diverse people from all over the country gathered together, some of them having given up their hours of work, to come to give respect and honour.
A few minutes before the event stood Elyada and in a few precise words explained what was going on.
Watch the video
In the video Elyada explains that there was great confusion where Moshe Aharonov was buried, whether inside or outside the Old City, on the Mount of Olives or Mt. Herzl. Eventually, when the grave was discovered, permission was granted to open it in order to take DNA samples to compare with members of his family. But then the three boys were kidnapped last year and the war broke out, and everything was put off until this year.
This story resonates so deeply with Israelis because of the ingrained culture of the IDF never to leave a soldier behind – even after 67 years. Of course this is to do with the huge importance that Judaism places on honouring and respecting the dead.
What wonderful people to have invested so much time in locating and identifying the grave of Moshe Aharonov z”l, and for all those others who came to the cemetery to pay their last respects. !מי כעמך ישראל
May Moshe Aharonov now rest in peace and may his family finally find comfort in knowing his place of rest.
On an altogether happier note, an article from a few weeks ago (via Reality) presents us with an Israeli medical breakthrough that will be able to make insulin injections a thing of the past. The Daily Mail had more details about the pill:
The new insulin pill – the first ever – has been developed by doctors and scientists in the U.S. and Israel. Trials are already under way and results so far show that the tablet works well at delivering insulin into the bloodstream.
Scientists have been trying for years to develop an insulin pill for diabetes, ever since the discovery of the hormone by Canadian doctors, Banting and Best, 80 years ago.
The major stumbling block has been the fact that insulin is easily destroyed by digestive juices in the stomach before it can get into the bloodstream.
Now experts have been able to coat tablets with a special molecule which allows the insulin to safely penetrate the wall of the intestine and enter the bloodstream.
Trials of the pill are taking place in Israel and Holland, and doctors are hopeful the pill will become available in about three years.
‘We are absolutely delighted to have got this far,’ says Dr Miriam Kidron of Jerusalem’s Hadassah University Hospital, who is leading the research.
‘So many people have been trying to produce an insulin pill. It looks as if we have finally achieved that goal.’
Initially, the pill is being tested on patients with type-two diabetes, the form of the disease which affects most people and is mainly caused through poor diet and obesity.
What a wonderful development! The number of people who could benefit from this pill is in the millions. Kol hakavod to Dr. Miriam Kidron and all the rest of the researchers who have made this extraordinary breakthrough.
Talking of technology, a small Israeli company, founded in Kibbutz Hatzor by members of the Hagana 60 years ago, beat out 35,000 other companies and won the German electrical supplies giant Bosch’s award for most outstanding supplier! (Hebrew only).
An excerpt in free translation:
The company, Aman, which is owned by Kibbutz Hatzor in the south of Israel together with the Tenne Foundation which supports small industries, employs about 250 workers and manufactures parts for engines and gears for cars.
… “This is an outstanding achievement considering the very high standards of Bosch” said the deputy CEO Dror Ben-Forto.
Kol hakavod to Aman and to all the workers involved in receiving this very well-deserved and prestigious award.
And now for something completely different. You may remember the highly amusing Great Escape of 3 rhinos from Ramat Gan Safari a few months ago. Well, this week, one of those adventurous rhinos gave birth to a daughter. 🙂
Six-year-old white rhinoceros Keren Peles gave birth to a female calf at the Ramat Gan Safari on Monday. The newborn was said to be healthy and almost immediately stood up and began suckling.
The father, 35-year-old Atari, seemed “very happy,” the safari said in a statement, and he and the infant rhino took to each other immediately.
The calf, which has not yet been named, is the 27th rhino born at the safari, which belongs to an international consortium of zoos working to pull the white rhino back from the verge of extinction.
Keren Peles recently made headlines when she, and buddy rhinos Rihanna and Karnivala briefly slipped out of the safari, alarming some nearby joggers.
Mazal tov to Keren Peles (the rhino, not the actress after whom she is named…) and to the entire Ramat Gan Safari family. May they continue to 120!
And now in a complete turnabout, here is a short clip of a wonderful celebration we held in our shul this week, when we welcomed a new Sefer Torah (Torah scroll) donated by one of the families. Members of the shul went to the family’s house and filled in the last letters of the scroll. The Torah was then placed on a very (very!) sparkly flashy truck which moved very (very!) slowly down the road, accompanied by very (very!) loud music and people dancing in the street until it reached the synagogue. There, in a short ceremony the Sefer Torah was placed in the Aron Hakodesh (Holy Ark) ready to be read tomorrow. At the end we all headed to the hall for a great slap-up meal too.
What a wonderful celebration! May we continue to have such celebrations into the New Year which is beginning next week on Rosh Hashanah.
Meanwhile I wish you all Shabbat Shalom.