For some time, Dr. Eitan Galun, the head of Hadassah Medical Organization's Goldyne Savad Gene Therapy Institute, has been engaged in research to cure a genetic disease prevalent in the Palestinian community. He recently requested genetic material from a Norwegian scientist and was refused. "Due to the present situation in the Middle East, I will not deliver any material to an Israelitic (sic) university," she responded by e-mail. With this statement, she engaged in nothing less than a boycott of Israel and its scientists. By her actions, which confuse science with politics, the Palestinian population will needlessly continue to suffer from a disease that could be cured through scientific cooperation. This irony seems to have escaped the Norwegian researcher.
Miss Lebanon is boycotting this year's Miss Universe pageant, saying she will not participate alongside Miss Israel. Yamit Har-Noy, a 20-year-old member of the Israel Defense Force, called Christina Sawaya's decision "very distressing." "It is only a beauty pageant," Miss Israel said of the competition, which took place May 29 in Puerto Rico. "It has nothing to do with politics."