55,000-year-old skull may change what we know about Neanderthals and Homo sapiens 

The Guardian reports that a team of Tel Aviv University paleontologists led by Israel Hershkovitz discovered the skull fragment in western Galilee. The entrance to a cave there had collapsed approximately 30,000 years ago, preserving the cavern’s contents, including the skull.

What it reveals about the dawn of our species

A Palestinian boy wearing a military costume arrives at a military-style graduation ceremony for Palestinian youth who were trained at one of the Hamas-run Liberation Camps in Gaza City. Hamas’s armed wing organized ¨Liberation Youth Camps¨ for young Palestinians aged 15-21, to prepare them to ¨confront any possible Israeli attack¨, according to Hamas officials.  Some 17,000 youths graduated from these camps. (Photo Credit: Suhaib Salem)

  • Israel:Obama hates us. He hates Israel and all Jews. He hates Israel so much. He tells us to stop creating illegal settlements on Palestinian land. He hates us.
  • Barack Obama:*Raises every year the amount of military aid to Israel, raising it from $2.5 billion in 2009 to $3.1 billion in 2014. Vetoes any bid by Palestine to be recognized as a state in the UN. Vetoed in 2011 a UN resolution declaring Israeli settlements in the West Bank illegal.*
  • Israel:But why does Obama hate us and Jews?

We’re so excited to announce the launch of this series: “IsraelPalestine For Critical Thinkers” which will seek to delve deep into the rich history and context behind the region and its current-day issues. It’s an area of focus we care deeply about, and we’re humbled to have the opportunity to help facilitate a discussion around it. Please check out the YouTube channel and first two episodes! And don’t forget to subscribe for more! http://bit.ly/15W1X7a

Recap of Yesterday's Events

11:35 AM: An anti-tank missile was fired at a military vehicle near Mt. Dov in northern Israel. Several injured in the attack.

12:51 PM: Mortars hit a military position on Mt. Hermon. The IDF closed the site and is evacuating civilians from the area.

13:36 PM: The IDF holds Hezbollah responsible for the attacks.

13:50 PM: The IDF responded to attacks with combined aerial and ground strikes at Hezbollah operational positions.

14:20 PM: The IDF has confirmed that two soldiers were killed in this morning’s attack. Additionally, seven other soldiers were wounded, two of them moderately.

19:24 PM: The IDF has confirmed that during today’s attack, Hezbollah militants fired 5 anti-tank missiles at the patrolling force near Mt. Dov. One soldier and one officer were killed:

  • Sergeant Dor Chaim Nini, 20, from Shtulim. He was posthumously promoted to the rank of Staff Sergeant.
  • Captain Yochai Kalangel, 25, from Har Gilo. He was posthumously promoted to the rank of Major.

Maj. Kalangel was a company commander in the “Tzabar” Battalion of the Givati Brigade. Staff Sgt. Nini was an infantry soldier. Their families have been notified.

Seven additional IDF soldiers were injured, two of them moderately. The injured soldiers were evacuated to a hospital.

Currently, our soldiers continue to stand guard on the northern border; ready to protect the state of Israel and its civilians.

John Green and the Israeli Palestinian Conflict

I want to start this post by saying I’m completely biased when it comes to the above mentioned conflict, as I am currently writing this from Israel, the country in which I was born and raised. That being said, it gives me authority to talk about it, something John Green lacks.

What upset me most about the Crash Course video (that, if you’ve somehow missed, is right here) is that if it were a pinch more to the Palestinian’s favour, it would have been a stand and not facts. Only, of course, everyone who knows the situation well enough knows, these are not facts. The video makes it seem like it’s the whole truth, when at parts it’s not even true- not to mention all of it.

For example, did you notice how they failed to mention 1973? That year in which the most difficult war occured, where we lost literally thousands of men, and also a lot of the land gained in 1967? Ha, how easy was that to forget. Also: Hamas is popular because of social project in Gaza? So I take it you’ve not seen how they launch their missiles from schools, so that if someone dares to shoot back, they’ll have nice photos of the dead, innocent children they so like to hide behind.

I was really excited, though, around the end. “In the past ten years, Hamas has frequently launched rocket attacks into Israel, Israel has responded…” and you know, I thought, here we have it, finally how things really happened, “with extended and extremely violent invasions to Palestinian territory and have seen thousands of Palestinians killed” ah nope nevermind.

I may have gotten more sensetive over the years when it comes to this conflict, I think it’s because I’ve seen my best friends, my own sister, and possibly in the upcoming 2015, also myself, in military uniform. Also, it might be the fact that I can now say I personally knew people who died because of it. But, irregardless, let me leave you with this: My history teacher in High School used to tell us, it annoys her when people say, “How is it that Israel have won all their wars, and always lost less men? They must be the bad guys in this”. What these people don’t understand, unfortunately, is that if Israel lost a war, there would probably not be Israel anymore. 

Mr. Green, I really appreciate you and your work, but if you’re going to attempt to recap the world’s history, you’re gonna have to do better than that.


Report accuses Israel of targeting Gaza’s water facilities

A little-publicized report released during the final weeks of Israel’s summer offensive on the Gaza Strip last year accuses Israel of targeting water and wastewater infrastructure during the 51-day assault, despite having been provided the coordinates of all water and wastewater facilities.

Entitled Water Sector Damage Assessment Report, the paper by the Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) meticulously documents $34 million in damages that have caused a humanitarian and environmental crisis throughout the Gaza Strip.

Yet the damage detailed in the report is likely incomplete as the team is unable to assess damage to pipe systems because most of the damage is underground and covered by massive amounts of rubble.

Two people were fighting over a piece of land. Each claimed ownership. To resolve their differences, they agreed to put the case before the rabbi. The rabbi listened but could not come to a decision. Finally he said, “Since I cannot decide to whom this land belongs, let us ask the land.” He put his ear to the ground, then straightened up. “My friends, the land says that it belongs to neither of you – but that you belong to it.”