• Dutch Media,  Israel,  Judaism,  Opinion

    Gevaarlijke steun aan de BDS-beweging vanuit de Nederlandse Universiteiten

    De afgelopen weken kan je er niet omheen: de volledige escalatie van het langdurig aanhoudende conflict tussen Israël en de Palestijnse gebieden. Zowel aan pro-Israël als aan Pro-Palestina kant wordt al lang niet meer alleen oorlog gevoerd met raketten: inmiddels is ook een ware mediaoorlog ontstaan en wordt in een overweldigend aantal steden in landen over de wereld, waaronder ook in Nederland, hevig gedemonstreerd door Pro-Palestina aanhangers. Waar sommige hun steun betuigen door auto’s in vlaggen te wikkelen, leuzen door de straten te schallen, of toespraken te organiseren, zijn er ook mensen die oproepen tot medewerking aan de BDS-beweging. Hieronder vallen sinds deze week ook honderden Nederlandse academici: via internet…

  • Judaism,  Mental Health,  Opinion,  Psychiatry,  Times of Israel

    Sarah Halimi’s murder and the moral challenges of Forensic Psychiatry

    [Repost from the Times of Israel] Yesterday, on the 25th of April 2021, approximately 25.000 people gathered in Paris to demonstrate against the Supreme Court of Cassation’s decision to declare the killer of Sarah Halimi z”l as not criminally responsible for the gruesome and tragic murder, that took place just over four years ago. Not only in Paris, but also in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, London and other cities around the world, Jews and others gathered to demand justice for Halimi. Dr. Sarah Attal-Halimi z”l was a beloved Orthodox-Jewish mother and grandmother, who dedicated her life to caring for others as a family physician. On the night of the 4th of…

  • Environment,  Israel,  Opinion,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    One month after the oil spill, Israelis remain uninformed about health risks

    [Repost from the Times of Israel] Today, March 17th 2021, marks exactly one month after a large oil spill reached the shores of Israel. Over a few days, about 170km of Israel’s Mediterranean coastal line slowly blackened up with thick tar. During the first weekend after the disaster, as well as the following weeks, many Israelis showed their most involved and caring side, when they decided to spend precious free hours digging through the beach sand, filling up garbage bag after garbage bag with the black tar. This all while being highly encouraged by local municipalities, by the Nature Park authorities, as well as by family, friends, and community members.…

  • Environment,  Israel,  Opinion,  Other,  Public Health,  The Jerusalem Post

    Lack of transparency about oil spill endangers public health – opinion

    [Repost from the Jerusalem Post]  In recent days, both the Israeli and international media showed horrifying images of dead and blackened sea turtles, birds, and fish washed up on the Israeli seashores. Cause: a large oil spill, most likely due to a leaking ship, which now is damaging approximately 170 km. (40%) of Israel’s coast. Although the first oil was already found on a few beaches on February 17, the event was only briefly mentioned a day later in relation to a dead whale calf, which washed up on the shores just south of Tel Aviv. A more accurate extent of the disaster became clear during the weekend, after thousands of…

  • COVID-19,  Israel,  Opinion,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    After the COVID-19 pandemic, we will need time to grief and heal

    [Repost from the Times of Israel] February 2021, almost a full year after Israel confirmed its first coronavirus patient. Slowly but surely the world seems to brighten up a bit again: the virus mechanism is better understood, many knowledge gaps in our understanding of the pathophysiology (and treatment) of the coronavirus disease have been investigated, and worldwide vaccine programs have started up. Especially with the latter, a small spark of hope has been provided that there will be an end to the pandemic. And not just that, but the end might actually be near. We all long for this end, and for our lives to return to normal: to how…

  • Mental Health,  Opinion,  Psychiatry,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    The normalisation and celebration of online gambling (apps)

    [Repost from the Times of Israel]        Recently, Israeli high-tech company Playtika made major headlines with their business success. Started in 2010 from Tel Aviv, Playtika is considered one of the tech stars of our Start-Up Nation.        Going public on Wall Street with a 17.11% growth on the first day of trading last Friday the 15th of January and with a market cap currently estimated at $13.052 billion, Playtika is now the 6th most valuable Israeli company trading on Wall Street. [Source]. Something that is highly celebrated in the media, portraying Playtika as a role model and ultimate business model for ”high-tech companies” to strive…

  • Mental Health,  Opinion,  Psychiatry,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    The psychiatric stigma and ‘diagnosing’ our society

    [Repost from the Times of Israel] ”The problem we Israelis suffer from is a form of bipolar disorder – we are either extremely euphoric or experience so much anxiety we assume a fetal position waiting for it to pass, and that is not healthy for the soul.”        Those are the words that ex-director-general of the Health Ministry Moshe Bar-Siman-Tov used in a recent opinion piece — its topic further unrelated. Something that unfortunately appears to be common in our current day language: the use of diseases as a way of expression. Amongst these also psychiatric disorders: not only used to relate to the mental status of an individual, but…

  • Israel,  Opinion,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    The price of a life: More or less than the costs of traffic safety measures?

    [Repost from the Times of Israel]        Friday the 25th of December 2020. For some just a regular Shabbat evening, for others an evening with Christmas celebrations, or just an evening like any other. However, for the families of three young Israelis this was a night that changed their lives. During early nighttime hours, at the infamous Highway 4 (Kvish Arba), two cars made a full-frontal crash. Killing one of the drivers on the spot and leaving the other driver as well as its passenger critically injured.        In typical Israeli or maybe just current-day fashion, photos and comments about this tragic accident circulated freely on social…

  • COVID-19,  Opinion,  Public Health,  Times of Israel

    No more anti-vaxxers: Now is the time for adequate health education

    [Repost from the Times of Israel]        It’s early November, almost 11 months into the global COVID-19 pandemic and it appears we’re nowhere near the end of it. While some countries have opted for complete lockdown (Israel included) and others tried to ride out the first wave of infection, it appears that we’re all ending up at the same finish line: increasing numbers of infected and diseased individuals, as well as economic disaster and widespread unemployment.        Often mentioned as way out of the pandemic is ”herd immunity”: achieved when a majority of the population is immune to a virus, either through its natural cause of…