Daily TIP

Two Ethiopian-Israeli women sworn in as judges

Posted by Tip Staff - December 21, 2016


Two Israeli women of Ethiopian descent were sworn in as judges by President Reuven Rivlin on Tuesday, marking a first in the country’s history.
The ground-breaking appointments of the two attorneys were announced by the Judicial Nominating Committee in late September. At the time, Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked 
said the appointments helped realize the wishes of late Israeli President Shimon Peres, who authorized the covert evacuation of thousands of Ethiopian Jews to Israel in 1984 while serving as prime minister.
''I stepped out of the plane, and the first thing I saw was a man in uniform, just like the soldiers who had shot Jews dead back in Ethiopia," said one Ethiopian immigrant. "I was scared to death and grabbed the side of the plane. Then someone took me gently by the arm and said, 'Uri, I want to show you something you've never seen before, a Jewish soldier.' And the soldier -- he was a boy, really, younger than me -- smiled, shook my hand and said, 'Welcome to Israel, welcome home.'''
“To make aliyah as a child from Ethiopia and to end up representing Israel in the Olympics is the closing of a circle – a Cinderella story," said Ethiopian Israeli athlete Zohar Zimro.
When they came to Israel, many Ethiopian Jews had never seen a door or a staircase; it is truly phenomenal that the second generation in Israel graduates high school at a rate of 90 percent (compared to 93 percent of the general population.) Last January, the Israeli government allocated $14 million for job training, academic programs, and grants to employers for hiring workers of Ethiopian descent. There are more than 130,000 Ethiopian Jews in Israel today, making strides as beauty queens, Knesset members, and, now, of course, judges.


Hezbollah fighters in Syria are using American military vehicles and weapon systems originally given to the Lebanese army, Haaretz reported Wednesday.
A senior IDF officer told Haaretz that Israel has provided the United States with evidence, including photographs, showing that Hezbollah is using American armored personnel carriers (APCs) in its fight to prop up the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. According to Haaretz, “it is not clear yet whether the administration has acted upon it with the Lebanese government.”
The officer noted that Hezbollah has “strengthened its grip on the main national institutions in Lebanon,” including the nation’s military, in recent years, and believed that the Iran-backed terror organization had made “a deal” with the Lebanese Armed Forces to acquire the materiel.
Lebanese journalist Hanin Ghaddar wrote in The Tower Magazine this month that Hezbollah “already has total control over [Lebanon’s] state institutions.”
The U.S. embassy in Beirut said last month that it is working to authenticate pictures published on social media that showed Hezbollah parading an arsenal of American military equipment in Syria.


King Mohammed VI of Morocco attended the rededication of the Ettedgui Synagogue in Casablanca after its restoration was completed on Friday.
The synagogue and the adjacent El Mellah Museum, which retraces Jewish history in Morocco, were revived as part of the second phase of a government program aimed at rehabilitating Casablanca’s old city. A government grant of about $844,000 funded the restorations, according to the Maghreb Arab Presse, the Moroccan state news agency.
Serge Berdugo, secretary-general of the Council of Moroccan Jewish Communities, told the Maghreb Arab Presse that the restoration of the synagogue and the museum “will also preserve the authentic Moroccan identity.” He said the restoration shows the king’s commitment to conserving spaces of cultural dialogue and coexistence.

In Sierra Leone, people are dying of kidney disease due to a lack of available treatment. But as of this month, kidney patients in Freetown can finally access the country’s first dialysis unit – thanks to the Israeli government. Paul Hirschson, Israeli ambassador to Senegal and non-resident ambassador to Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Sierra Leone and Cape Verde, live-tweeted the first-ever dialysis treatment in Sierra Leone on December 15, 2016. MASHAV, the Israel Foreign Ministry’s agency for international development cooperation, donated a dialysis unit to Connaught Hospital in the capital in 2012. However, the dialysis system needs an adjacent water purification system and the hospital didn’t have one. When the Ebola crisis hit the Western African nation, no technician would fly into the country to set it up. Israel finally was able to send a technician to Freetown earlier this month. “1st dialysis treatment in #SierraLeone completed. A life was saved. It’s as simple as that,” tweeted Hirschson. (via Israel21c)

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