Israel in the News Jul/Aug 2017
Israeli App Could Save Your Life
If you’re a resident or tourist in Israel and have a life-threatening medical emergency, Magen David Adom’s revolutionary smartphone app may save your life.
Magen David Adom (MDA), Israel’s national emergency medical service (EMS) and a world-leading developer in emergency response technologies, has introduced a new app you can download to give emergency personnel immediate access to your medical information, location, and condition, thus reducing the time it takes to receive lifesaving treatment.
Invented by a team of more than 30 full-time MDA software developers, the “My MDA” app allows users to “call for help, provide their medical history (and their family’s), conduct a live text chat with an EMT, send their geolocation, as well as live stream photo images and video footage from the scene,” according to the American Friends of Magen David Adom.
The app’s geolocation technology allows dispatchers to locate callers within seconds—even in remote locations—and quickly send help. The user’s medical history, which he must update on the app in advance, immediately transfers to the dispatcher upon the call.
The app’s live video ability sets MDA apart from all other emergency organizations. “In the emergency dispatch centers all over the world, the call takers, the operators, they are blind. They work only with their hearing sense and the ability to talk and to ask the right questions. Magen David Adom is the first emergency organization in the world that has the ability to see the patient, to see the scene, and not to be blind anymore,” said Ido Rosenblat, MDA’s chief information officer. Dispatchers can view the scene’s severity, decide what type of rescue vehicle to send, issue instructions until first responders arrive, and alert the hospital how to prepare.
“My MDA” already has saved many lives. According to a recent study conducted by MDA and Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, the new technology has reduced the average time for stroke patients to receive hospital intervention by more than half—from 54 to 24 minutes.
MDA plans to share its technology with EMS organizations worldwide. “This protocol—and the technology we’re using—is already saving lives in Israel. If it can save lives somewhere else in the world, too, so much the better,” said Dr. Refael Strugo, MDA’s chief medical officer.
Officials React to UNESCO’S New Anti-Israel Vote
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO’s) vote in May to deny all Jewish ties to Jerusalem has backfired since more countries abstained or voted against the resolution on “occupied Palestine” than supported it. The resolution, which claims Israel has no legal or historic rights anywhere in Jerusalem, passed 22 to 10, with 23 abstentions.
The United States, United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Greece, Paraguay, Ukraine, Togo, and Germany voted against the resolution. Those voting in favor of it included Brazil, China, Egypt, Iran, Russia, South Africa, and Sweden.
Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama-Hacohen, called the vote a “significant victory” for Israel since 32 countries supported Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem. “You might think you won today, but actually you lost again and continue to lose with every passing day….Here we are, and we are here to stay,” he told the Arab states.
Danny Danon, Israel’s UN ambassador, declared, “This biased and blatantly deceitful decision, and the attempts to dispute the connection between Israel and Jerusalem, will not change the simple fact that this city is the historic and eternal capital of the Jewish people.” He added, “Israel will not stand silently by in the face of this shameful resolution.”
From news reports
Verizon: “Welcome to Palestine”
A customer of Verizon, America’s largest cell carrier, recently received a “Welcome to Palestine” text message from the carrier upon landing at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv. “I did a double take,” said Mark Rosenblatt. “I was shocked that an American company was falling into some BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement] rhetoric.”
Verizon spokesman Scott Charlston deflected the charge, stating the airport “is close to the Israeli border and there are cell sites and wireless signals from different providers on both sides….When powering up or leaving airplane mode, the phone connects to the strongest signal available at the time.” But since there is no country named Palestine and the airport is clearly located in Israel, the message implies anti-Israel, pro-BDS sentiment.
Israeli’s Favor One-State Solution
Israeli public opinion no longer favors a two-state solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, according to a recent survey published by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. Due to ongoing Arab terrorism, most Israelis now view a Palestinian state as unrealistic and undesirable.
The survey found that 79 percent of Jewish Israelis believe Israel should retain a unified Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty. A two-state plan calls to divide Jerusalem and make it the capital of both Israel and a Palestinian state.
The survey also revealed Jewish support for withdrawal from the West Bank has decreased from 60 percent in 2005 to 36 percent in 2017, and only 12 percent of Jewish Israelis believe a West Bank withdrawal would end the conflict.
Allies Knew About Holocaust Earlier Than Thought
While countries today seek to shelter Syrian refugees, new documents reveal the Allies of World War II—the United States, Russia, and the United Kingdom—knew of the Holocaust two-and-a-half years earlier than commonly thought yet did nothing to stop the genocide or take in Jewish refugees.
The documents, hidden for more than 70 years, were released after former U.S. envoy to the UN, Samantha Power, lobbied for the archive to go public. It shows that a full year before the U.S. entered the war, the West knew the Third Reich had already massacred 2 million European Jews and was planning to eliminate 5 million more in concentration camps.
Anti-Semitism within the U.S. State Department, which wanted to preserve economic ties with Germany after the war, stopped efforts to help the Jewish victims.
ISIS Unintentionally Helps Archaeologists
ISIS has unintentionally helped archaeologists find the ancient palace of King Sennacherib of Assyria, whose brutal, pagan reign the Bible describes in 2 Kings.
After Iraqi forces recaptured the Iraqi city of Mosul from ISIS, archaeologists discovered the more than 2,600-year-old palace as they dug through the debris of the prophet Jonah’s tomb, which ISIS desecrated in 2014. FoxNews.com reported, “[The palace] was partly destroyed during the sack of Nineveh in 612 BC. Sennacherib’s invasion of the ancient kingdom of Judah is extensively documented in the Bible.”
Israel Today (israeltoday.co.il) called the discovery “one of the more exciting archaeological finds in recent years” and said it “provides yet further evidence that the biblical account of Middle East history is accurate.”
From news reports
Israelis Defend Nation Against Apartheid Claims
Two Israeli representatives from Israel’s Interdisciplinary Center research university recently traveled to Cape Town, South Africa, to counter anti-Zionist activists’ “apartheid” smear about Israel during “Israeli Apartheid Week” (IAW), an annual anti-Israel event at college campuses worldwide.
Wanana Abrams, a 28-year-old Israeli of Ethiopian origin, calls herself “just one of countless examples—along with thousands of other religious and ethnic minorities—of why the term ‘apartheid’ does not apply to the liberal, democratic Jewish state.” The IAW movement attempts to portray Israel as an institutionally racist country akin to South Africa’s 20th-century apartheid regime.
Cape Town’s demonstrations are known for being the most hostile of all IAW protests. Several protests devolved into outright anti-Semitic exhibitions that included Nazi salutes and waving flags with Hezbollah and Hamas insignias.
Israel Dismantles Settlement; Media Ignores It
Israel recently dismantled another Jewish settlement. The Israeli army evacuated Malachei Hashalom, an unauthorized encampment near Shiloh in Samaria. The community hadn’t displaced any Arabs, nor did it occupy private Arab land. It stood on the grounds of an abandoned army base. The news media largely failed to report Israel’s action.
Contrary to the media’s demonized depiction of “colonialist” Israel, Israel has torn down many such outposts in recent years—not to mention the dismantling of the Yamit communities in northern Sinai (1982), the destruction of four Jewish towns in northern Samaria (2005), and the expulsion of more than 8,000 Jews from Gaza (2005). The media ignores these stories but broadcasts any time Israel makes plans to build a handful of homes in Judea and Samaria.