Grapevine

Channel Two political commentator Amnon Abramovitch has endorsed Tzipi Turjeman, who is running for mayor in Kiryat Ata.

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October 21, 2007 08:04
4 minute read.
amnon rabinovitch 88 224

amnon rabinovitch 88 224. (photo credit: )

 
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IT'S A known fact that singer Ofra Haza, who died in February 2000 and would have celebrated her 50th birthday next month, adored children and tried desperately to have her own. Many don't realize, however, that she had an adopted son. He wasn't officially adopted, but he did live with her and his non-biological father Doron Ashkenazi, whom Haza married in July 1997. Although Shai Ashkenazi lived with Haza for only a few years, she became an instant mother to him. The relationship remained under wraps until recently, perhaps because Shai was still a minor when Haza died, or perhaps because he was Ashkenazi's adopted son and was part of the package deal in the marriage. Whatever the reason, his story has now become public through a documentary film. His own story makes for high drama. The son of a drug addict and a convicted murderer who committed suicide in prison, he was taken away from his biological parents when he was three-years-old and put up for adoption. He was adopted two years later by Ashkenazi and his first wife Ettie, and lived with them for a year-and-a-half before their marriage broke up and ended in divorce. When Ashkenazi left the marital home, he took Shai with him. When he met and wooed Ofra Haza, it was understood that Shai would live with them. In fact, Haza bonded immediately with Shai, who remembers Haza as an excellent, supportive mother who sang around the house and always had food ready for him when he came home from school. After about a year, they moved into a house that belonged to Haza. He was 15 when she died from AIDS and was traumatized by the media accusations that she had been infected by Ashkenazi, who subsequently died from a cocaine overdose in 2001. Shai believes that the media contributed largely to Ashkenazi's depression and deadly drug use. Shai has no memory of his biological father. The only father he remembers was Ashkenazi, whom he loved dearly and for whose sake he decided to appear in a documentary. An additional reason for making the film was to get the public to understand the importance of adopting abandoned or orphaned children. JOURNALISTIC ETHICS preclude individual members of the media from endorsing a candidate running for political office - but apparently it's okay if the candidate was a childhood friend. Channel Two political commentator Amnon Abramovitch has endorsed Tzipi Turjeman, who is running for mayor in Kiryat Ata. Abramovitch who was born and raised in Kiryat Ata, did not come to Turjeman's gala campaign party in the D'Or banquet hall, but he did send a video in which he said that he knew Turjeman since she was 12-years-old and that she had always been an energetic and public spirited person. Citing Netanya's Miriam Feierberg as an example of a good female mayor, Abramovitch expressed his conviction that Turjeman could do for Kiryat Ata what Feierberg has done for Netanya. THE METHODS used by Kolbotek, the hard-hitting consumer affairs program hosted and produced by Rafi Ginat, have been questioned by a large segment of the public since one of his victims, the supermarket chain Tiv Ta'am, held a press conference in response to the expose that sought to prove the company's operations are unhygienic and that it sells polluted meat. After trying unsuccessfully to prevent the program from going to air, Tiv Ta'am retaliated by accusing Kolbotek of staging certain footage and of cutting out footage that would have put Tiv Ta'am in a better light. Tiv Ta'am soared into the headlines in recent months when billionaire investor Arkady Gaydamak sought to buy it and turn it into a kosher operation. The deal, which ultimately fell through, was brokered by Roni Maneh, the former husband of beauty queen Nicole Halperin, who demanded a commission of $10 million. Gaydamak refused to pay, saying that Maneh had misled him, but Maneh kept pressing for the money. Eventually Gaydamak filed extortion charges against him with the police, saying that Maneh had threatened him. Maneh for his part, claims that Gaydamak owes him money for other transactions. SINGER, DANCER and talent adjudicator Michal Amdurski has demonstrated that you can have your cake and eat it. While she was pregnant with her second daughter, Amdurski was hired by maternity fashion company Rami Lee to head its winter campaign for 2008. Thus Amdurski, whose figure is now back to its svelte proportions, is shown in full bellied glory in the new Rami Lee catalogue. NOT EVERY expectant celebrity wants to be photographed with a protruding stomach. Among those who would prefer to avoid the paparazzi is Yael Bar Zohar, who lately is spending a lot of time and energy trying to evade photographers. Entreaties by Bar-Zohar to leave her alone fall on deaf ears. Surely a pregnant woman is entitled to some form of consideration.

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