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January 26, 2018

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PAGE 12A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JANUARY 26, 2018 ~~ Y Avi Ohayon/GPO Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi make a joint appearance in India on Monday. By Yaakov Lappin JNS Israeli Prime Minister Ben- jamin Netanyahu's visit to India is occurring against the backdrop of a massive and still growing river of defense sales and technology transfers from Jerusalem to New Delhi. Israel's defense indus- tries have been supplying ever-increasing numbers of cutting-edge weapons and platforms to India's military. Last April, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) announced a $2 billion sale of medium- range, surface-to-air missile defense systems to the Indian Army. IArs Barak 8 air defense system, which can detect threats that are more than 60 miles away, is in service in the Indian Navy. Another prominent devel- opment in bilateral defense ties is a $525 million order from India for the purchase of Spike anti-tank guided mis- siles produced by Rafael Ad- vanced Defense Systems--a deal thatwas initially canceled by India for reasons relating to the country's "Make in India" policy, but which was report- edly revived shortly before Netanyahu's visit. "India has deep defense co- operation with Israel," Vinay Kaura, an assistant professor of international affairs and security studies at the Sardar Patel University of Police, Security and Criminal Justice in Rajasthan, India, told JNS. "This has been a mutually beneficial relationship," he said. "India has diversified its arms purchases while getting highly advanced weapons. Israel has benefited substan- tially monetarily Israel has been avery reliable supplier of military spare parts to India during time of crisis. India has also turned to Israel to upgrade some of its Russian- origin military equipment." For its first few decades of independence, India, un- der the direction of former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and his Congress Party, sought friendlier relations with Arab states and aligned itself with the third-world Non-Aligned Movement, which was often hostile to Israel. Despite a number of similar conditions that sur- rounded their establishment, India viewed the Jewish state as a proxy of the imperial Western powers. This approach changed when the end of the Cold War caused Indian leaders to rethink their global strategy, including relations with Is- rael. In January 1992, India and Israel opened their first bilateral diplomatic mis- sions. Since then, one of the most important aspects of Indian-Israeli relations has been military and defense sales cooperation, with Israel becoming one of the top weap- ons exporters to India along with Russia and the U.S. Kaura said that in past conflicts India experienced with Pakistan, such as the 1999 Kargil war in Kashmir, as well as in other conflicts, Israel "has provided India with actionable intelligence that proved very useful for India. India and Israel are cooperating on intelligence sharing and countering ter- rorism." Netanyahu's visit, which comes six months after In- dian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Israel, "will fur- ther deepen the already close defense ties," said Kaura. Additionally, he argued, "There are many advanced American weapons systems that India could not access directly. India could get these weapons through Israel." One challenge for Israeli defense firms has been to find ways to work with the Make in India initiative, set up by the Indian government to ensure local production. Kaura said Israeli firms have been able to work with this policy by forming a grow- ing number of joint ventures with Indian partners. Israel's Elbit Systems, for example, teamed up with India's Adani Group to form Adani-Elbit Advanced Systems, which manufactures drones in India. "Similarly Israel's IAI has signed a memorandum of understanding with India's Kalyani Strategic Systems to develop and market se- lected air defense systems and lightweight special purpose munitions. India's Tata Power SED has become a partner of Israel's DSIT Solutions, to supply portable diver detec- tion sonar to the Indian Navy. These are just a few examples of a growing list of joint ven- tures," Kaura said. "Israel is recognized as a cyber-security powerhouse. It has approximately $6.5 billion of cyber product exports to its credit. India, which has been facing innumerable cyber threats, can benefit a great deal by institutionalizing cooperation on cyber security issues," he added. One element that is miss- ing is an institutionalized, government-to-government channel to support defense cooperation regarding highly sensitive technologies, Kaura stated. "It is important to set one up," he said. "There are reports that India is planning to ink a Spike anti-tank guided missiles deal through the government-to-government route. This could be a good beginning." Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, which makes the Spike missiles, told JNS in a statement that it "prides itself in being able to create part- nerships with international leading aerospace and defense companies overseas." Rafael said that "India and Israel are strategic partners and Israel has always support- ed India's urgent operational necessities during times of crises. For Rafael too, India is a strategic and significant part- ner. Rafael has always stood by India to supply systems at short notice during various operational contingencies." As a result, the state-owned company said that it has been keen to create ways to ensure the transfer of Israeli defense technology to India. "We already work with the different branches of the Indian military and the Indian security apparatus," Rafael said. Rafael's advanced camera surveillance, ordnance and air defense systems have been integrated into the Indian Armed Forces. "We have done so while maintaining and implementing our strategy to forge local partnerships and address India's Make in India policy," the Israeli company stated. The list of joint ventures between Rafael and India is expected to grow in 2018. "A significant work share of Rafael contracts is being manufactured in India," said the company. Rafael has sold the Indian Air Force its Litening precision targeting pods, and in that transaction, has surpassed the contract's expectations of setting up 30 percent of the manufacturing in India, instead going on to produce a "large scope of the pod in India, through a tech tie-up with DEFSYS, located in Gurgaon," according to the company. In other joint ventures, Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems has been formed to ensure "maximum Indian component manufacturing of various systems and other future munitions;" Astra Rafael Communications is designed to domestically produce electronic warfare systems and software defined radio systems; and Rafael Reliance Advanced Defense Systems will enable India to make its own air-to-air missiles and missile defense systems. Earlier this year, IAI's out- going president, Joseph Weiss, noted that his company had worked with Indian defense industries and armed forces for the past 25 years "as part of our strategic partnership." "We continue to stand with our partners in India at the forefront of technology for the defense and security of both our countries," he said. (JTA)--Moshe Holtzberg, who lost both his parents in a 2008 terror attack at the Chabad House in Mumbai, visited his old room accompa- nied by the Indian nanny who saved his life and by Israel's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. Moshe, 11, known even now in the Indian media as "Baby Moshe," found the marks on his wall where his mother had measured his height as a toddler. Netanyahu marked his present height on the same wall during their visit on Thursday. It is the first time that Moshe, who lives in Israel with his grandparents, has returned to the building since being spirited away by his nanny during the attack. In July, Indian Prime Min- ister Narendra Modi visited Israel to mark 25 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries; it was the first visit to Israel by an Indian head of government. During the visit, Modi met with Moshe, who said he missed India. Modi invited the boy to return at any time. Netanyahu offered to bring Moshe with him on his next trip to India. Sandra Samuel, the In- dian nanny who ran out of the Chabad House carrying 3-year-old Moshe, accompa- nied him to Israel, remaining with him out of loyalty and love. She also returned with him on his visit to India. The Chabad House attack was one of several carried out in Mumbai over four days in November 2008 by a Pakistani Islamist group that left 166 dead--including Moshe's par- ents, Rabbi Gavriel and Rivkah Holtzberg--and hundreds injured. In addition to the Holtzbergs, four other Jewish visitors to the Chabad House were killed in the attack. Natives of Israel, the Holtz- bergs moved to Mumbai in 2002, where they opened the city's first Chabad House, a synagogue and community center for Jewish residents and tourists. During Thursday's event, Moshe and Netanyahu un- veiled a plaque in memory of the attack. The top floors remain in the same condition as they were after the attack, with bullet holes marking the walls, as part of a memorial and education center that Chabad calls a "living memo- rial" to the Hottzbergs and the other victims. Following the unveiling of the plaque and museum, Moshe spoke to the guests and reporters gathered in the building. He thanked Netan- yahu for inviting him to India and invited Netanyahu to return with him in two years to celebrate his bar mitzvah. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Moshe Holtzberg at Nariman (Chabad) House in Mumbai. "My heart beats, my heart is moved, to return to my parents' home, the Chabad House that has been rebuilt and refurbished," the boy said. "Here I was born, and here I spent two years. I have absorbed my beloved parents' sense of mission, to leave the Promised Land on behalf of the rebbe. From the lowest of places. The house that is open to everyone, to Jews from around the world, who sought a warm corner. My beloved parents did what they did here for the Land of Israel." Netanyahu said to Moshe: "The Jewish people have been with you throughout and there is a good reason for this. What happened here expressed many things. It expressed hatred of Israel and love of Israel. Your dear parents' love of Israel, that of the Chabad emissaries here and around the world, which embraces every Jew and has a home for every Jew every- where, including here in the heart of Mumbai." Following the event, Netan- yahu met with leaders of the local Jewish community. The visit to Mumbai was the last stop on the prime minister's five-day visit to India.