Arab and Jewish students at three Israeli universities faced off in campus demonstrations related to the latest outbreak of violence on the Gaza-Israel border.
Israelis are known for their gregarious behavior and love nothing more than spending time with their group of close friends. It’s a trait that is wreaking havoc among the quickly mushrooming singles population and threatens to have long-range anthropological effects on Israel’s future society.
The vast majority of Israeli Arabs are reconciled with the existence of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state and even exhibit a degree of patriotism, according to a poll released Thursday.
Two Cal State University (CSU) students spending their junior year on a foreign campus are enthusiastic about their experience. Ayelet Arbel loves the beautiful campus setting, the nearby beaches, the unique cultural exposure and the vibrant city life. Adam Ascherin is most impressed by the philosophy and outlook of the local people and their ready acceptance of strangers into their extended national family.
The good news, says their resident advisor Norma Tarrow, education professor at Cal State Long Beach, is that her two charges have quickly integrated into life at Haifa University and enjoy mingling with students from Europe, Canada and the East Coast states, as well as with local Arab and Druse classmates. Tarrow was among CSU faculty, who, together with the Jewish Public Affairs Committee, persuaded the administration to reinstate its overseas program in Israel after it was canceled following the outbreak of the intifada in September of 2000.
The bad news, she says, is that there are only two students from Cal State, and unless at least eight to 10 students enroll in the Israel program for the fall semester, the Cal State administration -- which pays for her salary and heavily subsidizes the program -- will probably have to cancel it for budgetary reasons.