Just eight months since Google was given the go-ahead by the Law, Information, and Technology Authority to release special Street View photography cars throughout Israel to photograph streets in Israel’s major cities, the launch will be celebrated on April 22 with Israeli government officials in attendance.
The service, which has been the source of controversy and privacy lawsuits in several countries, will feature images of the streets of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Nazareth and Mizpe Ramon, as well as the Dead Sea and the Kinneret/Sea of Galilee.
According to the Haaretz newspaper, Israeli authorities required Google to provide full details of all routes Google photographers intended to take, as well as to provide residents with the capability of blurring out license plates, homes, and other personal information before images are published.
Additionally, any litigation which may result from the Google’s Israeli Street View images must be conducted in Israel, not the United States. Google has also promised not to dispute criminal claims against it by arguing that the Law, Information, and Technology Authority lacks the standing to prosecute.
Une armée où les homosexuels sont libres d’être eux même ! une armée qui a compris qu’il était préférable pour tout le monde « de recruter un soldat gay assumé » plutôt « qu’un jeune qui le vivrait de manière cachée et qui, donc, mettrait son unité en danger ». Voila ce qui ressort du magazine Têtu qui consacre ce mois ci un dossier aux soldats homosexuels dans Tsahal.
Avec l’autorisation exceptionnelle du magazine Têtu. Nous vous dévoilons l’intégralité de l’article
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world.
Netanyahu was described as an “iconic, strong and determined leader who has excelled during a lifetime of service to the state of Israel.”
“Bibi’s accomplishments and service as a soldier, a diplomat, an economic reformer who took on the difficult and politically perilous task of challenging the status quo, and a two-time Prime Minister rank him among the world’s great leaders,” it was stated.
“Now, at a time of tremendous international instability and growing danger, Prime Minister Netanyahu, 62, has provided a compelling and reasoned exposition of one of the gravest threats facing the world today.
“He deserves credit for drawing attention to the threat Iran poses to Israel, to America, to the region, to its own people and to the free world.
“Confronting Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons and sponsorship of terrorism is an urgent task for all of us. At this perilous moment, Prime Minister Netanyahu is the right leader for Israel — and the right partner for America.”
It should be noted that Netanyahu’s profile was written by Eric Cantor – the majority leader in the US House of Representatives.
The list also features Iran’s Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Syrian President Bashar Assad, US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
These days, when he’s on vacation, Shahar Dan can be found back in his childhood home in Ma’alot, keeping his mom company as she makes couscous in the kitchen. There is not much he likes better, he will tell you, than having his mom cook her Moroccan food for him. It is a rare pleasure for the hotshot sushi fusion chef, who lives a world away, between Saint-Tropez, Paris and London, and who spends his days and nights cooking for others – slicing and dicing for the kind of crowd that doesn’t know a harira soup from a kefta kebab. Not that he is exactly complaining.
“My philosophy is, enjoy the ride. Just follow it wherever it goes,” says the boyish 40-year-old, in jeans and a black, button-down shirt, a silver chain around his neck, as he sips a late-afternoon cappuccino. “There is nowhere like Israel,” he shrugs, “but in the meantime, I am having the time of my life out there.”
Dan’s father, the scion of a rabbinical family who immigrated to Israel in the 1950s and became a high-school teacher in Ma’alot after a long military career, was not, initially, too impressed with his middle son’s choice of profession. “Dad was old-fashioned. He thought cooking was a low-level job. He was thinking more like ‘lawyer,’” says Dan. But it’s not like he grew up dreaming of yellowtail sashimi with jalapenos either.
Aimless after the requisite post-army South-America-on-a-shoestring trip, Dan moved to New York and, none to keen on schlepping furniture, turned to that other staple of illegal Israelis in the Big Apple in the 1990s – selling women’s clothing at the Soho free market on Wooster and Spring streets. Fate came in the form of a late-night party at the Palladium and a pretty Catholic girl from Barcelona on the dance floor. The two got married a few weeks later at city hall, and her parents – restaurant owners back in Spain – gave him a piece of advice when they called to give their “mazal tovs” over the phone: “She likes to be cooked for.”
Wanting to please, Dan started watching some daytime cooking shows, and from there it was just a few subway stops away to enrolling in the city’s French Culinary Institute, from which he graduated 10 months later at the top of his class. “Turns out I was good. Everything I made always came out tasty,” he grins. “Everyone was in shock, including me.”
Of Japanese food, Dan knew precisely nothing. “I had never eaten sushi in my life,” he admits. But after a few unpaid apprenticeships “chopping stuff” at restaurants around town he walked into the flagship Nobu in the Tribeca neighborhood and asked for a job. He started as a line cook at the takeout section next door, and later moved over to the restaurant and turned into a prep cook. A year and a half later he was promoted to sous chef. “I loved that food. It was simple. Uncomplicated. It spoke to me,” he says.
What followed that meteoric rise were three years filled with kisses from Hollywood actress Liv Tyler, kudos from former President Bill Clinton and so many other celebrity sightings that Dan can’t quite remember who was who. “There was one regular – that guy from ‘Gladiator’ – you know, the one who played the king,” he says, trying to be helpful. Oh, and on the night that Puff Daddy and Jennifer Lopez were breaking up, he confides, coming up with an arguably dubious claim to fame relating to the two music stars, he was peeking out from the kitchen as he put the final touches on his omakase tasting menu for them. “Nah, I didn’t really get to know Robert De Niro,” he says. “It was more like, ‘shalom, shalom,’ if we bumped into each other in the bathroom or something.”
In 2002, having mastered the signature black cod with miso, rocked the rock shrimp tempura, gotten divorced, remarried and divorced again, Dan packed up his chopsticks and moved to Miami, to serve as the executive chef for SushiSamba, the popular Peruvian-Brazilian-Japanese fusion restaurant famous for dishes like lobster with papaya salsa, and guava sorbet and scallops with caper sauce.
“In those years there were almost no other Israelis in the American cooking scene except for us,” says celebrity chef Nitzan Raz, owner of Israel’s own SushiSamba as well as several other trendy Tel Aviv restaurants, whose early career was spent alongside Dan’s across the ocean. “But I think Israelis have the chutzpah to push themselves – and we did just that – and had the time of our lives.”
Next stop for Dan was Monte Carlo, where he opened Pacific, an Italian-Japanese fusion restaurant that at its peak played host to everyone from Prince Albert of Monaco to Paris Hilton, all munching away on his Italian meatballs with miso sauce and sushi mozzarella with salmon. On Grand Prix racing weekends Pacific could achieve a million-euro turnover. “I loved the excitement of the kitchen, the women who walked out of magazines and up to my tables. I just loved the action,” he says. “It was a dream.”
“He is modest,” says Roy Sofer, who also worked with Dan in New York and today is a cookery teacher and a consultant to various restaurants in Israel, including the popular Giraffe chain. “There are several Israelis who have had success abroad in recent years, largely because, having gone through the army, they have both the discipline and inventiveness needed in a kitchen. But you also need talent, and Dan has it.”
In the last few years Dan has been working as a private chef for billionaire Pakistani brothers based in Europe, whom he cannot name publicly because of a confidentially agreement. “I fell into a job with guys who like to party,” he says, describing an extravagant lifestyle that has him traveling by helicopter between his bosses’ homes and yachts, preparing everything from their favorite simple breakfast (“hard-boiled egg with caviar, served on a pewter plate” ) to massive midnight “snacks” (“could be anything – fresh lobster and calamari maybe, or just simple steak and chips” ) for their parties with friends, including American rapper 50 Cent, actor Leonardo DiCaprio or any number of Saudi Arabian sheikhs. “I do everything for them,” shrugs Dan. “I am always on call. I might be in Monte Carlo, and they will call me and tell me to come to them in Saint-Tropez to make mint tea. No problem. That’s the job.”
Having an Israeli chef does not matter a whit to the Pakistanis, he says, and if they discuss Israel at all it’s in the context of, say, an Israeli chopped salad, not the Palestinian question. But Dan has to agree with Sofer and Raz – the Israeli upbringing has been good training. “My ability to get things done and not let my bosses down comes from home. Whatever they want, they get. I never say no, I can’t or I don’t have. There is no such thing. It’s an Israeli mentality.”
This month, with some time off, Dan is home, having had a seder meal with his siblings, sitting in Jaffa cafes with old school and army friends, taking his nieces to the playground, and hanging out where he is always happiest. “I love the kitchen in the home I grew up in,” he says. “It is some sort of base for me. Only I don’t touch a thing in there. I don’t want to compete with Mom.”
Rosetta Green, an Israel-based agro-tech company specializing in the development and improvement of crop genes, has joined forced with international seed manufacturer Bayer CropScience AG, to improve cotton yields for farmers.
According to a company press release, Rosetta Green’s technology “is based on the development of microRNA genes, which play important roles regulating key traits in plants.”
The company new innovation may help deal with longtime concerns of dwindling crops, caused partially due to the reduced effectives of feticides.
According to Israel Innovation News, in the 1990s, researchers discovered that miRNA acts as a “master genome regulator” in plants and mammals. Rosetta Green’s scientists have been able to manipulate miRNA thus creating a more resistant strains of cotton, corn, soybeans, and other crops.
The importance lent to the discovery goes beyond its effects to the crops themselves: Since cotton is not considered a food, stronger pesticides can be used to treat it, but those chemicals carry harmful environmental effects.
Rosetta Green and Bayer believe their collaboration – to develop new cotton varieties that could produce better yields under difficult environmental conditions – could cross various agricultural milestones and help propel the cotton farming industry further,
Bayer has also pledged to pay Rosetta Green for any development that can be commercialized, as well as royalties on future revenues from sales. Those royalties could amount to tens of millions of dollars, the company added.
Rosetta Green’s CEO Amir Avniel said that, “We believe that microRNA genes have great potential in the agriculture industry and in crop improvement, and are hopeful that the new technology that Bayer and Rosetta Green will develop will succeed in significantly increasing cotton yields.
“Such developments could significantly increase the areas where crops can be grown and gradually grow more and more crops in arid areas with limited water availability or access to brackish water only,” he added.