Grapevine: Mixed martial arts

Several martial arts events coming on up.

Karate (illustrative) (photo credit: INGIMAGE)
Karate (illustrative)
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
■ A JORDANIAN expert in the martial arts will next month be teaching Jewish and Israeli Arabs some of the finer techniques of karate. Sensei Emad Khalil, who heads both the Jordanian Karate Association and Jordan Shotokan Karate-Do will be one of the international instructors in the Budo for Peace two-day overnight seminar in May. He will lead the Jordanian team of instructors.
This will not be the first time Khalil coaches Israeli youth and adult Jewish and Arab karate enthusiasts. He did so last summer on the Herzliya beach and attracted teachers and students from all over Israel.
There will also be a sunset karate session on Herzliya’s Daniel Beach on May 18, from 6 to 8 p.m., but the main attraction will be the seminar on May 19 and 20 in the Beduin village of Abu Kweder near Dimona. This event includes transport, two training sessions at sunset and sunrise, an educational workshop, entertainment with a bonfire, food and overnight stay in a Beduin tent.
The Herzliya session is free, but the all-inclusive fee for the two-day seminar is NIS 250; participants who find their own way to the seminar site will be charged only NIS 100. Places are limited, and the deadline for signing up is April 30. Register by contacting Robeen Arkia, 052-281-5738 or; or Anat Peled, 054-678-9621 or In addition to the Jordanian instructors, there will be instructors from Japan and Senegal. The Japanese instructors are Mieko and Masakazu Someya, from Honbo Dojo Japan, and those from Senegal include Serigne Mbaye Gueye, a master in a unique African martial art – Mocrad.
The founder of Budo for Peace is Danny Hakim, who in addition to twice being a world karate silver medalist is also a philanthropist. He has represented three countries – Australia, Japan and Israel – in the Shotokan Karate World and European Championships.
He founded Budo for Peace in 2004 as one of his three major passions, combining two of them – karate and social change – in Budo for Peace. His other passion is filmmaking.
He believes that Budo for Peace can break down barriers between Jews and Arabs and Israelis and Palestinians, and has proved this to some extent, at least with regard to both men and women who have joined the program. Some may initially come just for the sake of learning martial arts, while still nursing hostilities against the other, but animosities gradually dissipate as participants absorb Budo values.
Hakim is married to Danna Azrieli, who chairs the Azrieli Group of companies. Her sister Naomi chairs the Azrieli Foundation, which supports a broad range of programs in Canada and Israel, including education, architecture, Holocaust commemoration, scientific and medical research, developmental disabilities, arts, music and more, and naturally Budo for Peace.
■ TWO OF Tel Aviv’s veteran theater directors Tzipi Pines of Beit Lessin and Noam Semel of the Cameri Theater are coming into the spotlight in different capacities. Pines will be acting in a television production, and Semel, who has never acted before in his life, has agreed to appear in a stage production in this year’s Israel Festival, in which he will portray Menachem Begin.
■ SAFED MAYOR Ilan Shohat was invited by Dr. Salman Zarka, the director-general of the Ziv Medical Center, to participate in a health happening together with medical students from ZMC, students from Ohalo College in Katzrin and members of the Safed Municipality to encourage healthy living.
Shohat said that it was his intention to promote Safed as a health city that advocates proper nutrition and exercise through sport, including an annual marathon race for which participants have to train all year round.
During the health happening, participants will engage in various sports and exercises such as spinning and Zumba dancing.