VFI News September 11, 2020

Report: Israeli Classes Over-Crowded, Teachers Underpaid

Israel has some of the most overcrowded school classes in the developed world, according to the OECD “Education at a Glance” report, issued on Tuesday.

Among elementary school children, classes are 25% more crowded than the OECD average, with 26.4 children per class compared to the average of 21.1.

The gap remains in high schools, with an Israeli class having on average 28.2 children compared to 23.3 for all OECD countries.

Kindergarten teachers earn 3% more than their colleagues in other countries but this seems to be an exception to the rule, as elementary and high-school teachers earn 6% less.

Israeli children study 958 hours per year, compared to 804 hours in the rest of the OECD. Despite the long hours, the children score poorly on international tests such as the one issued by the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) in 2018, which found that Israel leads the world in gaps between the various groups that compose its society.

Arab-Israeli students, the PISA study found last year, scored at the bottom of all OECD students. (JPost / VFI News)

An intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge. —Proverbs 18:15

“God, we ask that you give aid to the teachers and students of Israel—that they may teach and learn in safety and abundance.”

Israeli Health Officials: 'We're on the Brink of Collapse'

Israeli health officials are concerned the country’s healthcare system may be overwhelmed this winter if the coronavirus pandemic continues to worsen as the flu season begins.

According to a report Monday morning, several senior health officials warned that hospitals are already having trouble handling the increased number of coronavirus patients in serious condition, and will be further strained if the pandemic continues to escalate when the flu season begins.

Dr. Ze’ev Feldman, the chairman of the Irgun Rofei Ovdei HaMedina (ARAM) - which represents doctors working in the public healthcare system – and chief of Sheba Medical Center’s children’s neurosurgery department expressed concerns over the growing number of serious cases of the coronavirus and the continued increase in the number of fatalities each week.

On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation voted to impose daily 12-hour curfews on 40 cities and towns across Israel which have high coronavirus infection rates. Most of the communities in question are either Arab-majority or Haredi-majority towns. (INN / VFI News)

“Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me? —Jeremiah 32:27

“God, we ask that you protect those most vulnerable in this crisis—that you provide resources and healing to those who need it, and that you bring about a swift end to this terrible pandemic.”

Israel Trade with UAE Could Be $4 Billion a Year

Annual trade between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is expected to reach $4 billion, an Israeli minister said on Monday.

Israel and the UAE announced in August they would normalize diplomatic relations in a deal brokered by Washington.

The UAE has since announced it was scrapping an economic boycott on Israel and officials from the two countries have said they were looking at cooperation in defense, energy, medicine, tourism, technology, and financial investment.

Several Israeli and Emirati businesses have signed deals since the normalization accord was announced.

"Within three to five years trade between Israel and the United Arab Emirates will reach $4 billion," Israeli Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen told Israel's Reshet Bet radio station.

A spokesman for Cohen, Israel's former economy minister, said the figure was annual and included defense trade.

Israeli carrier Israir said on Sunday it had reserved slots for commercial flights from Tel Aviv to the UAE, preparing for potential tourism. (JPost / VFI News)

You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. —2 Corinthians 9:11

PA to Cut Ties with Countries Moving Embassies to Jerusalem

Saeb Erekat, Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), threatened on Sunday that the Palestinian Authority will sever ties with "any country that will move or open its embassy to Jerusalem".

“We urge all nation-states to abide by international law, including security council resolutions 478 and 2334. Violating international law is a sign of weakness, not strength,” tweeted Erekat.

“The most obvious violation of international law is Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem, and any recognition of such illegal annexation in any form is not only flagrant violation of international law, but also total disrespect for the UN Charter and the relevant UN resolutions,” he wrote in another tweet.

The tweets follow Friday’s announcement that Serbia would be relocating its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem by July 2021 and that Kosovo would recognize Israel. These moves are included in an agreement on economic normalization between Serbia and Kosovo which was signed at a meeting with US President Donald Trump in the White House. (INN / VFI News)

Fatah Party Lauds Munich Olympics Terrorists as Heroes

Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party, the largest party of the Palestine Liberation Organization, marked the anniversary of the Munich Massacre on Sunday by lauding the terrorists who participated in the attack that murdered 11 Israelis during the 1972 Munich Olympics.

In a Facebook post uploaded by the official page of Fatah's Central Region, they wrote: "On this day, the fighters of Fatah's 'Black September' carried out the operation in Munich that embodied the meaning of heroism, courage and sacrifice of the Palestinian fighter for the Palestinian homeland."

Nadav Segal, a member of the Arab Desk of the Zionist Watchdog group Im Tirtzu that reported the post, accused Fatah of promoting a two-faced policy.

"Fatah, like the rest of the PLO's organizations, continues to promote a two-faced policy where on the one hand it claims to shun terrorism, and on the other hand, it lauds murderers, names schools after them, and pays them salaries." (INN / VFI News)

If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. —1 John 4:20

“God, we pray that you shine your light of mercy and wisdom on the depraved minds of those who sow hatred and division.”

Minister: Hezbollah Stored Explosive Material in Germany Before 2016

Hezbollah has stored in Germany the chemical ammonium nitrate, which it has used in bombings across the world, a state interior minister said.

“The stored cold packs were brought out of Germany in 2016,” said Baden-Württemberg Minister Thomas Strobl confirmed Friday, according to a regional newspaper.

“There are no findings or indications that the local cold pack storage is related to the storage in the Port of Beirut.”

Last month, a devastating explosion rocked the port, killing 191 people and injuring more than 6,000.

The port contained nearly 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate, which can be used as a fertilizer or to make explosives, and was lodged at the harbor for six years.

Hezbollah operatives have used ammonium nitrate for terrorist plots in France, Argentina Britain, Cyprus, and Bulgaria.

The Lebanese organization has denied any involvement in the Beirut explosion. Hezbollah is widely viewed as controlling Beirut’s port system. (JPost / VFI News)

Tel Aviv University Using Nanotechnology to Treat Skin Cancer

Researchers at Tel Aviv University have designed a drug delivery system for the treatment of skin cancer melanoma that relies on nanotechnology, according to a university statement.

The "nanocarrier" is made up of biocompatible and biodegradable polymer, which is comprised of "repeating units of glutamic acids" (PGA - polyglutamic acid) and packages two different families of drugs together that have both been proven to be effective in the treatment of melanoma: BRAF inhibitors (Dabrafenib) and MEK inhibitors (Selumetinib).

"One of the major obstacles of the biological treatments is that after a while, the cancer cells develop resistance to the drugs," said leading researcher Prof. Ronit Satchi-Fainaro from the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology at the Sackler School of Medicine.

"We assume that by precise delivery of two or more targeted drugs that will attack the cancer cells forcefully and simultaneously from different directions, we can delay or even prevent the acquisition of this drug-resistance."

Their findings were published in the August 2020 issue of Advanced Therapeutics as the cover article. (JPost / VFI News)

“God, we ask that you bless and encourage all those who are working diligently to save and enhance the lives of your children.”

Dean Kremer, First Israeli Drafted to MLB, Wins Pitching Debut

Dean Kremer, the first Israeli baseball player to be drafted into the Major Leagues, was called up to the Baltimore Orioles and earned a victory in his debut — all in less than 24 hours.

Kremer led the Orioles to a 5-1 win over the New York Yankees on Sunday, allowing just one hit and one earned run while striking out seven in six innings on Sunday afternoon.

The 6'3", 185-pound right-hander pitched for the Israeli national team in the 2014 European Championships and in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. He also played for the gold-medal winning Team USA in the 2013 Maccabiah Games in Israel.

Kremer says he is happy to be a role model for Israeli children who want to play professional baseball.

“It’s awesome to be able to hold the torch, so to speak, for guys like me,” said Kremer. “There is a list and it’s growing every year. We’re just showing the kids over there that it’s possible.”

He has told reporters that he takes his Jewishness seriously and would not pitch on Yom Kippur. (VFI News)