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Fri. October 31, 2014 EDITOR'S PICKS :  
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Lead Story in Context
Issue: Israel's Jewish Identity. What Does it Mean?
MidEast Week
PA: Made "Generous" Offer; Israel: "Bring it to the Table"
Clergy Say Religion Supports Ecology
Freightos Aims to Bring the Shipping Industry into the 21st Century
Palestinian Women Sew Their Way to Independence
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Israel Under Pressure on Its Chemical Weapons
Israel Concerned About Syria Spillover
Children in Gaza Exhibit Trauma Symptoms
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New Bill in Israel to Ease Conversion to Judaism
by Linda Gradstein on Thursday, October 30, 2014

Chief Rabbis Threaten Not to Recognize Converts A new bill that is being presented to the Israeli parliament next week aims to break the monopoly of the Chief Rabbinate and allow municipal rabbis to perform conversions in Israel. If passed, the bill would make it easier for an estimated 400,000 Israelis, most of them from the former Soviet Union, to formally convert to Judaism if they so choose. Conversion is the only way that most of these Israeli citizens.....

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Women in Jerusalem Dance for Peace
by Linda Gradstein on Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Silence and Movement Interact Many of the women – Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Druze – seemed to know each other. There were squeals of recognition, hugs and kisses as women who rarely get to meet reunited with old friends. Soon, one woman took out a drum and another shook a tambourine, and there was clapping and Middle Eastern-style dancing. The guest of honor sat quietly observing. With her gray hair and sparkling blue eyes, and dressed in an aquamarine tunic,.....

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Japanese Cuisine from the Far East Reaches Out to the Middle East
by Samantha Badgen on Thursday, October 23, 2014

From vegans to kosher consumer, interest in Japanese food soars in Israel [JERUSALEM] – Except for the shouting out of cooking instructions, only the sizzle of the skillet was heard on the patio surrounding the kitchen where Boaz Tsairi and Atsuko Ikeda chopped, toasted, crushed and mixed sesame, tofu and a variety of vegetables. The only sounds heard from the large crowd surrounding them were those of people struggling to find a place to sit or stand, and.....

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Surveillance cameras in Gaza to Monitor Reconstruction
by Abdullah H. Erakat on Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Ban Ki-Moon Calls for Quick Reconstruction The Palestinian government says that closed circuit cameras will monitor the thousands of tons of cement that will be needed to rebuild homes in the Gaza Strip that were destroyed or damaged during the summer’s fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. A Palestinian security source told The Media Line that the cameras have been installed and the purpose is to ensure that Hamas will not be able to rebuild the network.....

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Israelís Deputy Foreign Minister: No Difference between Hamas and ISIS
by Felice Friedson on Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Tzachi Hanegbi disappointed, not surprised, at allies’ criticism of Israeli war tactics [JERUSALEM]  Tzachi Hanegbi, Israel’s deputy foreign minister, is a former head of the parliament’s influential Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Hanegbi spoke with The Media Line some 35 days after Israel launched its ground invasion of the Gaza Strip, Operation Protective Edge. At the time of this interview, it is day one of a 72-hour cease fire which began with the firing of scores of rockets.....

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2,000 Year Old Stone Inscription Unearthed in Jerusalem
by Linda Gradstein on Tuesday, October 21, 2014

One of Most Important Latin Inscriptions Ever Found Rina Avner knew she had found something special when she hit the large stone during an excavation outside the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City. The stone, weighing one ton, had a well-preserved Latin inscription. Researchers say this is among the most important Latin inscriptions ever found in Jerusalem. “First I had a wave of adrenaline surge through me, and then I got all sweaty when I saw the inscription,” Avner told.....

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Palestinian Women Sew Their Way to Independence
by Linda Gradstein on Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Traditional Embroidery a Way out of Poverty Iman Darawi, a soft-spoken Muslim woman wearing a traditional grey headscarf, doesn’t look like a pioneer. But Darawi is a divorced self-employed Palestinian seamstress from the town of Beit Sahour near Bethlehem, who is responsible for teaching other seamstresses, and a symbol of how roles are changing for Palestinian women. “I enjoy this work and it enables me to make a living and raise my children,” Darawi told The Media Line at.....

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Scientists Oppose Egyptís Plan to Expand Suez Canal
by Linda Gradstein on Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Move could have ecological and economic consequences Egypt has begun digging to significantly expand the Suez Canal to enable a larger volume of shipping. The move has sparked protests from scientists who say it could devastate the marine ecosystem in the area. 'This giant project will be the creation of a new Suez Canal parallel to the current channel of a total length of 72 kilometres (44.74 miles),' Mohab Mamish, chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, told a recemt.....

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Yemen's Youth Disillusioned
by D. Robbins on Sunday, October 12, 2014

Trying to come to terms with new political realities in Sana’a For 10 months Afrah Alzouba and Yasser Al-Roaini served as leaders on the team that provided technical support to Yemen’s reconciliation talks known as the National Dialogue Conference (NDC) that aimed to unite the country’s factions behind a new government and constitution. When the official deliberations ended in January, the young duo stuck with Yemen’s internationally-backed transition. They began facilitating community outreach and providing assistance for the.....

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Neglecting Domestic Issues Fuel for Arab States Terror Groups
by Abdullah H. Erakat on Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Allocation of funding to ISIS war opens door to terrorism Against the backdrop of Arab nations participating in the American-led coalition fighting the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (ISIS), concern is growing that the neglect of domestic issues by Middle Eastern states spurred by the diversion of social service funding to the war effort – particularly by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) -- could lead to more terrorism. Although Dr. Guenter Meyer, director of the German-based Centre for.....

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