L.A. philanthropists Henry and Anita Weiss pledged $1 million last week to support and expand nanotechnology research at Ben-Gurion University’s (BGU) Beersheva campus.
Our major institutions are struggling to adjust, react, prepare but most of all to respond to those most harmed
Blame it on the Mesopotamians. About 4,000 or 5,000 years ago, they came up with the meshuggeneh idea of New Year's resolutions.
And what was their most common pledge? To return borrowed farm equipment. "That would be a pickax or a sickle," says Danny, 12, who studied the Mesopotamians last year in his ancient civilization class.
But today we can't simply return some borrowed tool, toy or casserole dish. No, we North Americans feel compelled to annually reinvent ourselves as perfect physical, intellectual and emotional beings. We feel compelled to promise to shape up, to learn Aramaic or read the 100 top English-language novels, to be more patient.
Exactly two weeks before a controversial last-minute presidential pardon made him a household name in the United States, Marc Rich was sitting in the VIP section at a mega-event for Birthright Israel in Jerusalem.