Bahai News - GRAPEVINE: The fashionable politician
Friday, March 23 2001 02:21 28 Adar 5761
GRAPEVINE: The fashionable politician
By Greer Fay Cashman
(March 22) WHAT was Deputy Defense Minister Dalia Rabin Pelosoff doing
at around 10 a.m. last Tuesday? Well, she was watching a fashion show.
Rabin Pelosoff was among several celebrities who turned up at the Dome
in Tel Aviv to see the Castro Man summer collection.
Others in the audience included model and entertainer Sandy Bar-Avni,
former basketball star Aulcie Perry, sex bomb Orly Weingarten and
avant-garde fashion designer Yuval Caspin.
DUE TO his absence abroad, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was unable to
attend the first celebration in Jerusalem of Naw-Ruz, the Baha'i new
year. Even though Sharon couldn't make it, Moshe Sharon, the incumbent
of the Baha'i chair of studies at the Hebrew University, was there, as
were numerous representatives of the HU, which was the first and thus
far only university in the world to establish a chair in Baha'i studies.
Sharon welcomed the presence of yet another monotheistic faith in this
part of the world, noting that it is largely composed of the best of the
other monotheistic beliefs.
Baha'i International Community secretary-general Albert Lincoln who,
together with his wife, Joan, Jerusalem Baha'i representative Kern
Wisman and his wife, Barbara, and Murray Smith, BIC deputy
secretary-general and his wife, Miette, were the main part of the
extensive reception committee welcoming guests at the Inbal Hotel, noted
that in two months' time, some 3,000 Baha'i members from around the
globe will flock to Haifa, site of the Baha'i world center, for the
inauguration and illumination of the new terraced gardens.
A magnificent visual feast, the gardens, funded by Baha'i communities
worldwide, constitute the most ambitious and expensive of Baha'i
projects to date.
Attending the new year celebrations were Foreign Minister and Acting
Prime Minister Shimon Peres, who dropped in and dropped out, colliding
at the exit with Pnina Herzog, president of the International Council of
Women, whom he kissed on each cheek; former director-general of the
Foreign Ministry Eytan Bentsur, Chilean Ambassador Sally Bendersky
Schachner, Czech Ambassador Daniel Kumermann and his wife, Jarmila,
counselor at the British embassy Nicolas Marden and his wife, Melanie,
and Piotr Puchta, counsellor at the Polish embassy, who was anticipating
the arrival of Andrzej Pruszkowski, the mayor of Lublin, and Adam
Wlodarczyk, the mayor of Radom, both important places in Jewish history,
who will be attending the 21st Jerusalem Conference of Mayors which
Also present were attorney Daniel Jacobson, Avinoam Brog, the brother of
former prime minister Ehud Barak, Counselor at the Yugoslav Embassy
Sonja Asanovic Todorovic and Rabbi David Rosen, who was "over the moon"
about his first granddaughter Imbar, born last Saturday and named after
her great-grandmother. Although the name is a Hebrew one, in English the
acronym is In Memory of Bella Rosen.
TODOROVIC is still waiting to learn the identity of her new ambassador.
Her former ambassador, Mirko Stefanovic, who completed his term here a
couple of months back, and now works out of the Yugoslav Foreign
Ministry, has been back to visit his wife, Ljiljana, and their daughter,
who stayed on until the end of the school year. They're expecting him
again next month.
FIGURES in public life seem to have seen and heard it all, and sometimes
one wonders if anything can still move them.
The reactions of Gila Katsav when she hosted members of the Lions of
Judah at Beit Hanassi indicated that, in three decades of being married
to a public figure and sharing many of his experiences, she has not yet
An outgrowth of the United Israel Appeal Women's Divisions of the United
Jewish Communities and Keren Hayesod, the Lions of Judah boasts a global
membership of 13,000, of whom 100 are Israeli. The Lions combine fiscal
commitment with hands-on involvement, and the Israeli Lions are particularly
keen to help Ethiopian immigrants join the mainstream of Israeli society.
One such immigrant, Sigal (Maretha) Hobbey, held everyone, including Gila
Katsav, spellbound as she spoke of her family's perilous journey via Sudan to
Recalling Sabbaths in her village where there was no gas, electricity, radio
or television, and water was pumped from the well, she said that on Shabbat
everyone gathered in the synagogue and spoke about Jerusalem.
"For us Israel was Jerusalem. There was no Haifa or Tel Aviv, just Jerusalem."
Their first culture shock was not when they actually got to Jerusalem, but
when they encountered their first Jewish Agency representative. They had never
met a white person before, let alone a white Jew!
ALTHOUGH peace in the Middle East seems as elusive as ever, not everyone has
given up on it, especially US Peace Corps Alumni in Israel, who got together
this week at the Abu Tor Jerusalem home of chairperson Elana Rozenman. Since
not all the alumni knew each other, they introduced themselves both by name
and by relating where and when they served in the US Peace Corps. Rozenman
served in Colombia in the Sixties.
Among the other alumni were jewelry artist Elayne Ashbey, who served in Kuala
Lumpur, AACI National Director of Development Mark Zober, who served in Sierra
Leone and India, Josh Nadel, a Motorola executive who served in Botswana, Carl
Hoffman from the Jaffe Institute, who brought his Filipina wife, Agnes, whom
he met during his Peace Corps service there, and Marilyn Farber, an
epidemiologist who served in Colombia.
Others present included Seeds of Peace volunteer Larry Malm, who surprised
and delighted everyone by introducing himself as the son of Peace Corps alumni
who served in Tunisia in the late Sixties.
He had brought two Seeds of Peace high-school participants, Itai Baniel from
Givatayim and Tarek Arow from the village of Jatt near Hadera. The two spoke
about their coexistence group, leaving room for optimism that the peace
process could rise again like a phoenix out of the ashes.
Zippora Katz, who also served in the Philippines and now lives in Tekoa, was
so enthralled by the coexistence discussion that she missed her last bus and
had to be accompanied to the hitchhiking post from where she got a lift home.
WITH hardly enough time to catch his breath after attending meetings with
Prime Minister Sharon in the US, American Ambassador Martin Indyk is heading
south Sunday to familiarize himself with the activities of the Jewish National
Fund, specifically in relation to the JNF's role in enhancing the national
water economy, rolling back the desert and improving the quality of the
Indyk will also be inscribed in the JNF's Golden Book by JNF director-general
FIRST Secretary at the Hungarian Embassy Ferenc Toth and his wife, Tinde, are
about to become parents of a sabra. Papa-to-be is already practicing getting
to Sheba Hospital, Tel Hashomer, in record time.
Slovakian Ambassador Maros Sefcovic and his wife, Helena, have a
one-and-a-half-year-old sabra, who has become such a handful that they'll be
happy to put him into the temporary care of doting grandparents as soon as
©Copyright 2001, The Jerusalem Post
Page last updated/revised 032301
Return to the Bahá'í Association's Main Web Page