Grapevine: Burning the midnight oil

“I discovered that the two nations share central values, such as the high importance of children."

PUBLIC SECURITY Minister Gilad Erdan with Philippines Ambassador Neal Imperial. (photo credit: Courtesy)
PUBLIC SECURITY Minister Gilad Erdan with Philippines Ambassador Neal Imperial.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Billed as “The Other Laila Lavan,” the lineup of talks in English and Hebrew at WeWorkSarona on Tuesday night beginning at 9:30 is much more universal than religious in content than one would expect on Shavuot night. The event is limited to young professionals in their 20s and 30s.
Golan Heights Winery will provide somewhat more than a mere sample of its wines, in addition to which there will be other refreshments, such as snacks, tea, coffee and, of course, cheesecake – all free of charge. Participants should register at: https://TelAvivShavuot3.
Among the speakers will be Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Michael Oren, who is a former ambassador to the US; Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai; former MK Dr. Ruth Calderon; Rabbi Shlomo Chayen of North Central Synagogue; Denes Ban, managing partner of OurCrowd Asia; Michael Eisenberg, founder and partner of Alef Venture Capital; Gala Kogan, Israeli actress; Adrienne Gold, Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project educator.
AT JERUSALEM’s Beit Avi Chai, lectures begin somewhat later, closer to 11 p.m., and have been enigmatically titled “Search for the Truth,” bearing in mind that one man’s narrative is another man’s myth. Among the speakers will be Dr. Orit Avneri, Prof. Elisheva Baumgarten; Bilha Ben-Eliyahu; Yara Bar-On, Nir Baram, Daniel Gordis, Rabbi Amnon Dukov, Prof. Aviad Hacohen, Dr. Aviva Zorenberg; Amihai Hasson, Prof. Yoram Yovel; Prof. Yerachmiel Cohen, Amit Segal, Nava Semel, Prof. Avigdor Shinan; and Tzur Shezaf.
Here, too, it’s not all Torah, because secular people also think that it’s an in thing to broaden the mind on Shavuot night. Last year, there was a lot of frustration because people who had walked long distances to get to Beit Avi Chai discovered that the lectures they wanted to hear were overcrowded, and even second and third choices were almost, if not entirely, inaccessible. Organizers say that there will be more room this year.
They might also consider disabled and very senior people, for whom standing in line for anything up to half an hour is difficult.
RELATIONS BETWEEN China and Israel are becoming ever closer, especially during this 25th anniversary year of diplomatic relations between the two countries. Earlier this month, the China-Israel Innovation Forum, in collaboration with the Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization and led by TAU President Prof. Joseph Klafter, held what proved to be an enriching event for leading Israeli alumni, in which they met Prof. Qiu Yong, president of China’s Tsinghua University, who was in Israel to receive an honorary doctorate during TAU’s annual board of governors events.
He was accompanied by a delegation of senior representatives from China’s business, academic and government sectors, who also participated in the conference.
The main focus of the event was a panel on “Academia & Industry: the Powerful New Pair,” with moderator Shlomo Merkel, CEO of Broadcom and chairman of Ramot, TAU’s intellectual property board. Panel participants were: TAU alumnus Yuval Tal, founder and president of the Fintech company Payoneer; Prof. David Mendelowitz, head of TAU Ventures; Shlomo Nimrodi, CEO of Ramot; and two representatives from the Chinese delegation: Yuan Wei, president of Tus Holdings, and Dr. Jin Qinxian, dean for technology transfer at Tsinghua University.
According to Klafter TAU has trained more than 3,000 senior Chinese officials and has established ties with more than 30 leading universities in China.
Dori Manor, chairman of the Lubinski Group, surprised participants by addressing them in fluent Chinese. He told them that he is a graduate of TAU’s Faculty of Engineering, and that Lubinski is the only Israeli company importing private vehicles from China. He recounted how, living in Shanghai with his family last year for three months, he learned Chinese, took the metro every morning like everyone else, stood in line for dim sum, and so forth. That’s how he got to know Chinese culture. He did it because he is very interested in China, and admires its culture.
He noted that Israel and China have a great deal in common. “I discovered that the two nations share central values, such as the high importance of children. The family is most important of all; we respect our elders; and more. In addition, both nations have lunar calendars, and a heritage of over 5,000 years.”
He added that “in 1948, when Israel became an independent state, the British left, thinking that Israel is a third-world country. But prime minister David Ben-Gurion told them: ‘When we could already read and write, you were still up in the trees.’” In China there is a similar saying: “When human beings still walked around naked, the Chinese already wore silk garments.”
Participants were hosted by Sigal Adar - Head of the TAU Alumni Organization, Sigalit Ben Hayoun – Executive Director of the TAU Alumni Organization and Orly Fromer - Executive Director of the China-Israel Forum for Innovation, Advisor to the President of TAU and Director of Asian Affairs. Alumni who attended the event included: Supreme Court Justice Dr. Yoram Danziger, Aaron Mankovski, David Assia and his wife Advocate Naomi Assia, Uri Levine, Yuval Tal (of Payoneer mentioned above), Ofir Perelson, Amnon Dick, Rafi Mehudar – Member of TAU’s Board of Governors and businessman Shraga Biran.
IN THE latter case, Biran and his partner Michal hosted the Chinese delegation, including academics, prominent Chinese businessmen and government officials for a Friday night dinner Among the guests were Prof. Qiu Yong, President of Tsinghua University and Zhou Liye, President of Tsinghua Holdings Group, former Israel Ambassador to China Matan Vilnai, Prof. David Mendelovic of the School of Electrical Engineering at TAU, who is one of the founders of TAU Venture Israel. Biran signed copies of his book “Opportunism: How to Change the World One Idea at a Time” which has been translated into Chinese and is due for publication in June. He also presented the findings of The Institute for Structural Reform on the new geopolitics of the Middle East: “Peace will be achieved when China decides that it is a strategic goal together with the United States, Israel and the Arab World; China must be a partner to achieve peace,” said Biran.
SWEDISH FASHION company COS has hit the Israeli market and has opened its flagship store in the Gindi TLV Mall.
Some people know COS as a type of lettuce, but in this case it’s an acronym for Collection of Style. COS, which prides itself on timeless modernity at affordable prices is part of the group whose parent company also owns H&M with which the Horesh family which runs the privately owned Match Retail Ltd., headed by Andrew Horesh signed a franchise agreement almost a decade ago. Match Retail has now added COS to its franchise stable.
COS Global Managing Director Marie Honda, who is based in London, came to Israel for the opening of the store which is managed by Ziv Queen.
ON THE subject of fashion, international Israeli model, Shirli Boganin, has also become a fashion designer, and wasinvolved in designing the new Discreet summer collection, which was launched last week by the company’s owner Yakov Gabbay; at theAyalon Mall. Boganin has been the Discreet presenter for the past five seasons.
THE PHILIPPINES and Israel are on the way to forging a bilateral agreement on cooperation in curbing illegal drugs.
At a meeting in Tel Aviv this month between Philippine Ambassador Neal Imperial and Gilad Erdan, the Minister for Public Security the two acknowledged that the proliferation of illegal drugs is a serious threat to society and agreed that cooperation between the Philippines and Israel is essential to combat drug abuse and trafficking across borders. Imperial acknowledged that a growing number of Filipinos in Israel have been arrested or convicted for involvement in the illegal drug trade.
According to reports, illegal substances or drugs are sent to Israel from the Philippines hidden in parcels, which have been intercepted by Israeli authorities.
Erdan welcomed the Philippine proposal for bilateral cooperation to combat illegal drugs as a transnational crime, with the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) in the near future.