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  • Chinese Students Greet Olympians with ‘shalom’ and Israeli Flags

    Clutching Israeli flags, the young Chinese students greeted the Israeli Olympic swimmers with shouts of “shalom” as the athletes visited their elementary school here this week. The Shi Jia Primary School was assigned Israel as part of a citywide program of partnerships between schools and Olympic countries. In preparation, the school spent the past two… More ▸

  • Maccabiah Bridge Collapse Survivor Beats the Odds to Reach Beijing

    David Zalcberg has cheated death and defied his doctors to compete in Beijing. Zalcberg was 16, a rising Australian table tennis star, when he survived what he called the “horrendous experience” of the 1997 Maccabiah Games disaster. A footbridge collapsed, plunging him and the rest of the Australian team into the polluted waters of the… More ▸

  • Israel Brings Largest Contingent, Great Expectations to Beijing

    The largest contingent in Israeli Olympic history was eyeing its biggest medal haul, with one Israeli competitor narrowly missing out and another still in the mix on the first full day of competition at the 2008 Games. Judo competitor Gal Yekutiel lost a bronze-medal match Saturday in the under-60 kg class to 2007 world champion… More ▸

  • Diverse Beijing Jewish Community Offers Combination Plate of Choices

    Dror Poleg, an Israeli who has lived in Beijing for three years, says being Jewish is “easier in China than in Israel.” “In Israel there is lots of politics, what school you go to, what yarmulke you wear,” Poleg says. “Here you can just be you.” Beijing has had an organized Jewish community since China’s… More ▸

  • Jews in China Roll out Red Carpet for Tourists, Athletes

    Gold medalists won’t be the only ones climbing podiums in Beijing once the 2008 Olympic Games are under way. Isaac Shapiro will be stepping up to celebrate his bar mitzvah. Isaac, of Highland Park, Ill., will be called to the Torah at the Chabad House in Beijing on Aug. 16. Isaac and his family are… More ▸

  • In Hot Pot Dilemma in China, a Muslim Comes to the Rescue

    Being treated to a hot pot meal is one of my most dreaded social situations in China. Hot pot is like Chinese fondue. A large pot of meat stock bubbles in the center of the table, and fresh meat, fish, vegetables and tofu are dropped inside. You dip the cooked foods in a sesame sauce… More ▸

  • Swimmers Lead U.S. Contingent of Jewish Athletes in Beijing

    For Jason Lezak, Ben Wildman-Tobriner and Garrett Weber-Gale, the marketing possibilities are endless — perhaps “The Three Chaverim” or “Jews in the Pool.” All three Jewish sprinters are hoping to make a splash as part of the U.S. men’s swimming team heading to Beijing for the 2008 Summer Olympics. Not only will they be competing… More ▸

  • Chinese Farmers and Others Benefit from Israeli Expertise

    Zeying Zheng has been to Israel three times on programs about women’s empowerment and says the lessons provided are vital for China. “The most important thing facing our country is education,” Zheng told JTA, “so I was involved in training programs especially for women. If you look at our young generation, percentage-wise it’s not as… More ▸

  • Israel Sends Aid to China and is Touched by Rescue

    In a gesture of support, one of the world’s smallest countries is sending aid to the world’s most populous nation in the form of $1.5 million worth of equipment for earthquake relief. The first three tons of Israeli supplies to earthquake-ravaged China included sleeping bags, blankets and personal water purification units. The supplies arrived in… More ▸