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Arrival in Israeli capital an elevating moment.
Th(- . Jert.riaicry, A
act) tog i
Michelle and Jim Millman of Farmington-
Hills at the William Davidson-endowed
archaeological park that displays the
layers of discoveries made in the Old City,
from the Canaanite to Mamaluke periods
"For ye are to pass over the Jordan to go in to possess the land
which the Lord your God giveth you, and ye shall possess it
and dwell therein."
Jerusalem /Israel Journal
0 my once during my April 19-May 2
journey across Israel as part of the
Temple Israel of West Bloomfield Adult
Mission 2012 did I get the chills. It happened
ascending to Jerusalem through the Naomi
Shemer Mount Scopus Tunnel leading from the
Jordan Valley. As the Jerusalem
stone of this ancient hilltop city
came into view, I was awestruck,
once more, by the majesty and
splendor of this eternal, indivisible
capital of the Jewish people.
Clearly, we, as Jews, were home.
Ever since King David, in defeat-
ing the Jebusites, pronounced
Jerusalem the capital of the
Israelite nation more than 3,000
years ago, the city has played a
central role in Jewish existence.
No wonder Naomi Shemer, one of Israel's most
uplifting and venerated songwriters, closed her
now-classic ballad Jerusalem of Gold with:
"Yerushalayim all of gold
Yerushalayim, bronze and light
Within my heart I shall treasure
Your song and sight:"
Jerusalem, a bustling and diverse city of
750,000 people, is a sight to behold no matter
how often you walk its cobblestones, explore its
tunnels and pray at the only remaining portion
of the retaining wall of the Temple Mount.
The city is simultaneously stunning, inspiring
and daunting. It's Israel's biggest city as well as
the poorest. It's a city of special smells and voices.
It's also religiously significant to Jews,
Christians and Muslims, with the Western Wall,
Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Al Aqsa
Mosque all located within the same square mile.
The Muslim call to prayer finds its place among
church bells and shofar blasts.
Jerusalem is home to the Knesset, the
Israeli Supreme Court, the Israel Museum and
Hebrew University. The eastern sector was
under Jordanian control from Israeli
statehood in 1948 until the city was
reunited in the Six-Day War of 1967
— a reunification we'll celebrate this
Sunday, May 20, Yom Yerushalayim
(Day of Jerusalem).
We entered the city Tuesday, April
24, and headed straight to the Haas
Promenade. The popular Mount
Scopus overlook provides an expan-
sive portrait of the Jerusalem skyline.
It was here we absorbed the old and
the new — from the remnants of the
Second Temple, the walls of the Old City and the
graves of the Mount of Olives to the juxtaposi-
tion of modernity, including the David Citadel
Hotel and the Mamilla mall, where our 114 mis-
sion-goers would soon be staying and shopping.
Leadership on this ARZA World-hosted mis-
sion included Rabbis Harold Loss and Paul
Yedwab, their wives, Susan and Wendy, and
Cantor Michael Smolash and his wife, Jen Green.
After we sang the Shehechyanu, Rabbi Loss
shared how, years ago, congregants Sarah and
Irving Pitt gave $10,000 to Temple Israel and
said if anyone on an adult mission didn't savor
the sojourn, he or she could ask for a refund.
After 10 years, the dollars, all unclaimed, were
put into a temple scholarship fund.
Ties Michigan, Israel
t's a potential-
mic p, GAN
‘7, it A E.
BUSINESS B' RIDGE
Michigan and Israel, a
trans-Atlantic span that allows Michigan's bounty of manufacturing,
human resources, universities and infrastructure to tap into Israel's
entrepreneurial, high-tech workforce and its interest in extending
manufacturing, development and distribution to North America.
The Bloomfield Hills-based Michigan Israel Business Bridge
(MIBB) was built with fanfare in 2007, the innovative idea of
founders Chuck Newman, who owns the used-cellphone power-
house Recellular of Dexter, and Susan Herman, executive direc-
tor of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit's Michigan
MIBB seeks to spur business and investment opportunities
between Michigan and Israeli companies. MIBB seeks to bring new
business and jobs to Michigan by encouraging Israeli companies
with new technologies to open their North American business cen-
ters in Michigan.
Promising partnerships, totaling at least 60, have proven the
adeptness of the organization over the past five years at planting
Israeli business roots in Michigan soil.
The best-known relationship is between the Oakland University-
William Beaumont Hospital School of Medicine and Emek Medical
Center. A resident exchange program links the new Oakland
County medical school and the Afula hospital serving a Galilee
region of 500,000 culturally diverse people.
MIBB is busily planning its third automotive power breakfast to
introduce Israeli automotive companies to Michigan automotive
enterprises. Co-hosting the June 12 event are the Israel Export
and Cooperative Institute and the Government of Israel Economic
Israel's technological prowess is a byproduct of well-educated
and highly skilled researchers and product developers – many
who emigrated from the Soviet Union 20 years ago. They found an
inviting country, a growing economy and government support.
There's more to the Jewish state's high-tech stature than the
influx of talented Russians, however. As Dan Senor and Saul
Singer put it in their landmark 2009 book Start-Up Nation: The
Story of Israel's Economic Miracle, "If there is one story that has
been largely missed despite the extensive media coverage of
Israel, it is that key economic metrics demonstrate that Israel
represents the greatest concentration of innovation and entrepre-
neurship in the world today."
The prestigious list of local business and communal leaders
on the newly named advisory council – including Ralph Gerson,
Alon Kaufman, Florine Mark, S. Evan Weiner, Brian Hermelin and
Norman Pappas – gives instant credibility to MIBB, led by execu-
tive director Pamela Lippitt. How the board, staff and advisory
council lay out a vision and direction well into this new decade will
help influence Michigan's economic vigor and MIBB's ultimate role.
Time will tell how many partnerships emerge as a result of
MIBB's mix of trade missions, expos, networking meetings and
one-on-one matchups. But there's plenty of hope. As its economy
recovers, Michigan can better promote its potent economic assets.
Israel has 3,000 companies focused on life sciences, homeland
security, alternative energy, automotive, water technology and
agro-industry. It boasts a higher percentage of engineers and sci-
entists than any other nation. And it has the third-highest number
of U.S. patents per capita, according to MIBB. Israel also has pre-
ferred status with the U.S., making it an ideal global partner. il
Or Jerusalem! on page 32
May 17 • 2012