19 February 2019 - 14 Adar I 5779 - י"ד אדר א' ה' אלפים תשע"ט
Jewish veteran receives MBE from the Queen Print E-mail

A 101-year-old Jewish British veteran of WWII received an honour from the Queen on 1 June for his services to education. Mordaunt Cohen received an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire).

Cohen told the Jewish Chronicle he was “deeply humbled” to have been recognised for the years he spent teaching young people about the war and his experiences. Born in Sunderland, he joined the British Army after hearing about the plight of the Jews in Nazi Germany. He served in the jungles of Burma, now Myanmar, with the 251 West African Heavy Anti-Aircraft Unit, commanding Nigerian volunteers. After the war he became chairman of the Association of Jewish ExServicemen, through which he worked to ensure the memory of the thousands of Jewish soldiers who served in the British Army was not forgotten.

(Issue Jul/Aug 2018)


Forging closer ties, the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) and the Singapore Exchange (SGX) announced on 14 May a partnership focusing on growing capital-raising opportunities for companies, particularly in the technology sector.

SGX is also as a potential bidder for a stake in the Tel Aviv bourse, among a number of foreign stock exchanges that have signed non-disclosure agreements and expressed interest in buying into the exchange. TASE said in January that it was in the process of finding a strategic investor after a slump in trading volumes and around 200 delistings over the past decade, according to Reuters news agency.

TASE and SGX will work together to support technology and healthcare companies that are looking to tap the capital markets to fund their growth plans in Asia and globally. The two exchanges will pro-actively engage with technology companies seeking to penetrate Asian markets, to list on both exchanges. This will include assisting companies during the pre-listing stage, facilitating the listing process and providing issuers with post-listing support by leveraging the networks and platforms of the two exchanges.

Israel enjoys the world’s highest per capita number of startups, venture capital investments and amount of R&D spending. Singapore, with the government’s supportive policies and commitment to invest in research and innovation, has an established reputation as one of the strongest and most diverse startup ecosystems globally. In the recent “2018 Global Startup Ecosystem Report”, Tel Aviv and Singapore were ranked among the top 10 ecosystems in the world. Besides listings, SGX and TASE will explore other related areas of collaboration, including the potential development of a private-market eco-system in Israel and the enhancement of the posttrade connectivity and services between the two markets.

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Scotland to establish a Jewish Heritage Centre E-mail

A new Jewish Heritage Centre is to be created in Glasgow, Scotland, UK. According to the BBC, work has already started, after the project was awarded lottery funding.

It will be housed within Glasgow’s Garnethill Synagogue. The National Lottery has given £296,900 to the scheme, and that has triggered more funding from elsewhere.
Visitors will be able to learn more about those who escaped the Nazi regime and moved to Scotland to start a new life.

The money from the Heritage Lottery Fund unlocks pledged grant support from the Association of Jewish Refugees, the Wolfson Family Charitable Trust and the Federal Republic of Germany, and means the project now has £465,000 to go ahead.

The Centre will be housed in Scotland’s oldest synagogue, which was opened in 1879. It will include a display on the experience of refugees and survivors from the Nazi regime who found sanctuary in Scotland. Garnethill Hebrew Congregation helped young refugees, providing a hostel in the synagogue grounds for boys, and one nearby for girls.

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Britain appoints first Orthodox female rabbi E-mail

Dina Brawer has become Britain’s first Orthodox female rabbi. She received her semicha, or rabbinic ordination, in May in London from British-born Israeli academic and rabbi Dr Daniel Sperber after he administered a twohour exam.

Brawer, who was born in Milan to Moroccan-born parents, will take the title of “rabba”. “I will describe myself as a rabbi, that’s what I’ve trained to do and that’s what I’m qualified to serve as,” she told Britain’s Jewish News. She sat for her semicha after completing a four-year programme at Yeshivat Maharat in New York, Yeshivat Maharat trains and ordains Orthodox women clergy members. Brawer also served this year as a rabbinic intern at Netivot Shalom in Teaneck, New Jersey.

Brawer is also the founder of the UK branch of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, or JOFA and has been performing ritual and pastoral duties as a rabbinic student, and served as a scholar-in-residence at Hampstead Synagogue from 2015 to 2016.

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India top export destination for Israel military sales E-mail

India was the largest market for Israeli arms last year, amid an increase in sales to the Asia-Pacific region as a whole, according to the Jerusalem Post.

Israel’s military exports rose by 41% overall in 2017, the third consecutive year of increased defence exports, bringing in some US$9.2 billion in contracts. The largest distribution of sales, some 58%, was in Asia-Pacific, with Israel’s top three customers all originating from the region: India soared ahead at US$715 million, with Vietnam at US$142 million and Azerbaijan at US$137 million.

Sales to Europe still account for 21% of arms sales income, with North America at 14% and Africa and Latin America making up the remaining 7%. The majority of Israel’s exports involve aerial defence equipment, radar systems and ammunition.

Last month, India cancelled a ban on two Israeli arms companies, Aerospace Industries and Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Ltd., which it had previously blacklisted in 2006 due to allegations of bribery.

However, India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed a lawsuit demanding the closure of the criminal investigation against the two companies, culminating in a US$2 billion deal between India and Israel Aerospace Industries under which the company would supply India with Barak 8 surface-to-air missiles.

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