Tuesday 28 April 2009

Slumdog Stars Confirmed as a Couple

By Simon Perry and Matthew Kalman

People.com, Monday April 27, 2009

After much speculation about the nature of the relationship involving Slumdog Millionaire stars Dev Patel and Freida Pinto, Patel's mother Anita has confirmed to a British newspaper that the pair are very much a couple.

"First it was the film and now everything else seems to have slotted into place," Mrs. Patel is quoted as saying in Monday's Daily Mirror.

"Life can't get any better for him. Freida is really beautiful, and I am really happy for them."

Her comments come just days after Patel, 19, jetted to Israel to spend a whirlwind date with the Mumbai beauty, 24. "Yes, we knew he was flying to Israel to see her," said Patel's mother.

The pair rendezvoused in Tel Aviv as Pinto took time off from filming her latest movie in Jerusalem. The couple spent a few hours together in a hotel before emerging for a stroll around the harbor and an early champagne dinner at a seaside restaurant.

Onlookers said Pinto couldn't keep her hands off Patel. The couple spent their time at the table smooching and holding hands to the delight of a group of Japanese tourists who happened to pass by.

Shortly afterwards, Patel hopped a taxi to the airport to fly back to London, while Pinto returned to her base at the American Colony Hotel in East Jerusalem.

Wednesday 22 April 2009

Israeli Graduates of U.S. Business Schools Are Stuck With Loan Debts and No Jobs

Daily News Blog, April 21, 2009

Jerusalem — Hundreds of Israeli business-school graduates are stuck in the United States with no jobs but huge student loans to repay, the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz reported today.

According to participants at a gathering of 100 Israeli M.B.A. students and alumni in New York on Sunday, the prospects of getting a job in the dismal economic climate are slim. Meir Stein, a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, said many American finance and technology companies, particularly those receiving government money from the economic-stimulus package, will not hire foreigners.

Such support can be contingent on providing local jobs, and handling immigration issues can be a huge hassle for the employer, Haaretz said.

According to today’s Wall Street Journal, many American M.B.A. graduates who had planned to start a new career are being forced to return to their old jobs in order to find work.

The New York Times reported last week that this year’s Wharton graduates were changing direction abruptly as job offers from traditional companies dried up.

The global economic crisis has spared no one, including the Israeli M.B.A.’s, said Aharon Shenrech, who so far has no job and faces debts of $100,000 from his Wharton M.B.A. “I estimate that roughly 60 percent of my acquaintances who finished their M.B.A. studies are getting job offers, but the rest aren’t,” he said.

About 100 Israelis are accepted by M.B.A. programs at American universities each year, but their success depends on finding a good job afterward, even if the student ultimately plans to return to Israel. The whole concept of studying in the United States on a student loan is based on getting a good job, said Haaretz. And today, even if a job can be found, it may not pay well. —Matthew Kalman

Friday 17 April 2009

Peres warns of a ‘strike’ against Iran

Daily Mail
14 Apr 2009

ISRAELI president Shimon Peres warned last night that military action against Iran would still be needed if Barack Obama’s new diplomatic initiative fails to stop its nuclear programme.

He said he hoped Mr Obama’s call for dialogue with Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would be heeded. But he warned that if talks do not soften Mr Ahmadinejad’s approach, ‘we’ll strike him’.

The Obama administration announced last week that it would take part in talks between a group of countries and Iran over its nuclear programme.

It was a significant shift from President Bush’s policy toward a nation he labelled part of an ‘axis of evil’.

Iran insists the programme is a civilian one, but many countries fear it wants to produce weapons.

An aide to Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last week that ‘ Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons could quite possibly be the single most serious issue that faces the international community’.

Mr Peres admitted, however, that Israel could not take action without U.S. support, adding: ‘We definitely can’t go against the U.S.’

Sunday 5 April 2009


Story Image

Sunday April 5,2009

By Matthew Kalman

ISRAELI premier Benjamin Netanyahu’s new government got off to a bad start last week.

Prime Minister Netanyahu has returned to power, 10 years after he was ousted, with a 30-member cabinet so big that carpenters had to construct a new table for it in the Knesset.

But critics say his broad coalition, which includes members of the centre-left Labour party, the religious United Torah Judaism and Shas, and the secularist Israel Is Our Home, cannot last. The new government’s peace policies are opaque and its economic policies are likely to be a fudged compromise between Netanyahu’s free-market That­cherism and the socialist paternalism of Labour.

Outside Israel, Netanyahu was denounced as a warmonger for failing to include a clear commitment to a two-state solution with the Palestinians in his government policy guidelines. But he was overshadowed by his Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, leader of the Israel Is Our Home Party.

Lieberman, who grabbed attention by declaring that Israel was no longer bound by the Annapolis peace process, is under investigation on a string of corruption allegations and spent his first full day as foreign minister being questioned under caution by fraud police. If charged, he will have to resign.

Saturday 4 April 2009

American Universities Plan Their Own Study-Abroad Programs in Israel

Daily News Blog, April 3, 2009

Jerusalem — For decades, hundreds of American students have spent their junior year abroad at special programs on Israeli university campuses, but in a new trend, American universities are opening their own study-abroad programs in Israel, staffed by their own faculty members.

About 500 students from American universities are now enrolled in study-abroad programs in Israel lasting one semester or longer. That number is expected to double over the next year, said Ayelet Margolin, an official at MASA Israel Journey, an organization that helps coordinate the programs on behalf of the Israeli government and the Jewish Agency for Israel.

Among the American institutions with such programs in Israel are Boston University, Columbia University, the University of Miami, and the University of Pennsylvania. Other universities that have already announced plans to open such programs include Harvard University, New York University, the University of Illinois, the University of Maryland, and Washington University in St. Louis.

“One reason Israel is so attractive is that there is such a broad range of choice,” said Ms. Margolin.

Some programs that were halted over security concerns after the outbreak of the Palestinian intifada uprising, in 2000, have now resumed. One of them is the University of California system’s partnership with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. “It is in the best interest of our students to once again provide educational opportunities in Israel,” Michael Cowan, acting director of the education-abroad program at the University of California, said in a written statement. —Matthew Kalman