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August 9, 2013

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, AUGUST 9, 2013 PAGE 15A 0 By Debra Rubin WASHINGTONI DC--Sam Bain knew that life could be dangerous in southern Israel, with rockets fired indiscrimi- nately across the border from Gaza. But it wasn't until the Ohio college stude tvisited an Israeli day care center near the Gaza border that the reality truly hit him. This day care center was a bomb-safe facility. "We don't have bomb-safe day care centers inAmerica," Bain told "It was almost a wake-up call" about the reality of life in Israel, he said. Bainvisited the Jewish state in 2011 as part of a Chris- tians United for Israel (CUFI) campus trip. Last week. he was one of 400 students rep- resenting 157 campuses at CUFI's Washington Summit. which drew more than 4.000 people to the nation's capital. Session topics included Israel 101 - The Basics of the Arab Israeli Conflict. Myths and .Facts: Refuting the Negative Myths About Israel, The Bib- lical Mandate to Stand With Israel, A View From the Hill. with remarks by members of Congress, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R- Minn.), and a video address by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamir Netanyahu. CUFI primarily draws its support from evangelicals who cite two main drivers for m miners ByAbigail Klein Leichman Israeli rescue equipment helped workers save the lives of at least eight trapped miners in South Africa on July 28, after a nightmarish three-day ordeal underground that left three dead, allegedly at the han of an armed rival illegal mining crew. TheAgilite Instant Harness was used by Riga Rescue vol- unteer Graham Holmquist to lower a South African police interpreter down into the shaft to communicate with the injured miners regarding the procedures to follow. The product is designed for scenarios where military, po- lice, fire, rescue personnel or hikers unexpectedly require a harness, without needing to carry a rappelling harness with them at all times. Agilite's other popular product, the Injured Person- nel Carrier (IPC) or "Human Backpack," weighs less than a pound and folds down to 10 inches, yet allows a rescuer to carry up to 5.000 pounds on his or her back, hands-free. The IPC shot to fame when it was adopted by top U.S. Marine Corps units ayear ago and avideo showing the device in use with Israeli commandos went viral. "There was one point when we thought we would not be able to get the stokes basket safely into the mine shaft and we were going to use the IPC to extract the patients," said Holmquist. their backing of Israel: one, a biblical mandate that God gave the land of Israel to the Jewish people and, two, shared values, including freedom and democracy, with the United States. Indeed, that's the case for the two students whom CUFI made available for interviews with Bain, a senior business management major at Sinclair Community Col- lege in Dayton, Ohio, andVika Mukha, a rising senior major- ing in political science and media studies at the University of California, Berkeley, both describe themselves as, non- denominational Christians who grew up with positive outlooks on Israel. Both believe there are not enough voices on behalf of Israel on college campuses. Bain. who has visited cam- puses across Ohio, said he's seen anti-lsrael sentiment and anti-Semitism. "It is not the most friendly environment and they're going to present a biased side of the issue," he said. "You have to go in there and tell them that's not how things are." The freedom "we have in this country depends on freedom in other lands," Bain, 24, said. Part of Mukha's motivation stems from her roots in the former Soviet Union. Born in Belarus. she came to the United States as a baby. "I had ancestors who were per- secuted in the Soviet Union because of their faith. The He l ter tweeted to Miracle Medical, a distributor of Agilite emergency equip- ment in South Africa: "@ Miracle_Medical I can tell you! That is one kick ass harness and every person in EMS, SAPS, FD, should have one." Growing variety of gear Founded in Jerusalem less than two years ago, Agilite has become a known name in search-and-rescue, fire- fighting, law-enforcement, military and camping markets across the world. The company makes a growing variety of gear, in- cluding harnesses, litters and tactical vests, slings, belts, ropes, packs, pouches and helmet covers. "We have only been sup- plying Agilite equipment for a number of weeks now, and people's reactions to it have been both incredible and immediate," said Jennie Greenhill of Miracle Medical. "The Agilite products come battle-tested but they're al- ready facing tocal challenges of a different kind here." The company was founded by three Israeli military veterans, British-born Elie Isaacson and US natives It- zhak Oppenheim and Nadav Melichar. It was incubated at TheHive, a project of the non- profit immigrant employment organization Gvahim in Tel Aviv. Article printed from IS- RAEL21c: same people who persecuted them persecuted the Jews," Mukha, 20, said. At UC Berkeley, she finds herself in a hotbed of anti- "Israel sentiment. Earlier this year, her college's student gov- ernment, following 10 hours of debate, passed a resolution calling up the university to divest from companies that do business with the Israel Defense Forces. (UC Chancel- lor Robert Birgeneau said the vote would not change the system's Jnyestment policy.) Of the 200 people who voiced their opinions during the all- night deliberations, Mukha said, she was one of only two wh6 spoke from a Christian perspective. Earlier in the year, she attended a campus pastoral panel featuring four Christian ministerswho criticized Israel on human rights. "They were claiming to represent Chris- tians, but they weren't repre- senting me at all." she said. "Berkeley has over 80 Chris- tian studefit organizations," she said. "I would love to present to them from our'point of view why it is a biblical mandate" to support Israel, Mukha added. The impetus for campus chapters came from students themselves who contacted the organization seeking information about Israel. ac- cording to David Brog, CUFI's executive director. Founded in 2009, CUFI on Campus has 120 chapters and has trained 2,000 students to advocate for Israel, officials say. Some chapters, such as Mukha's, draw only a hand- ful of members, if that many. "What you want them to do is try to do events that are well attended," Brog said. Sometimes the lack of in- terest is due to apathy, both Bain and Brog say. "At a lot of Christian schools, Israel is not avalue that's taught; we're trying to change that," Brog said. At other schools, where anti-Israel sentiment might be strong people are afraid to support Israel publicly. "Not a lot of students, Jewish or not, have the guts to do it." That the CUFI activists aren't Jewish can give them credibility tha'c Jewish stu- dents, who some assume automatically will defend Israel, don't always have. People "may wonder 'what is this black guy from a small town in Dayton, Ohio, doing supporting Israel?" Bain said. That can help legitimize his message, he said, "because I don't have an obvious self- interest, other than the fact I love the Jewish people." CUFI doesn't staff campus chapters, but provides support for the students, including CUFI/Paul Wharton Photography College students Sam Bain (left) and Vika Mukha, pictured at the 2013 Christians United for Israel (CUFI) Washington Summit, are nondenominational Christians who grew up with positive outlooks on Israel. Both beh'eve there are not. enough voices on behalf of Israel on college campuses. inviting them to the summit as well as to a winter student program held in San Antonio, Texas, where the organization isheadquartered. In addition, up to 40 of the top students are selected for an annual trip to Israel. A campus display at this week's conference showed what students may be up against, from an "apartheid wall" that's gone to national campuses to quotes from professors denigrating Israel. Among CUFI's campus challenges is that activists graduate. "We try to get them to replace themselves," Brog said. Recently, the organization has increased its social media presence.AFacebook page has more than a million "likes." A CUFI on Campus app regular- ly provides users with articles about Israel, responses to anti-lsrael items in the news and messages from the staff "to help keep their spiriCs up," said Joshua Ahrens, CUFFs national campus coordinator. Not all the articles have a political perspective either, said Ahrens. '"We want stu- dents to see that Israel is such a positive presence in the world," he said. "If Israel helps farmers in India with their crops, nobody can say [the article is] biased." If you're like most people, you'll probably wait until the last minute to send your annual Jewish New Year greetings. And, like most people, you will probably truly retlret having waited so long. However, once a year, prior to Rosh Hashanah, you have the 0pportunity to wish your family and friends and the Jewish community "A Happy and Htalthy.New Year" through the Special Rosh Hashanah Edition of HERITAGE. Deadline for Greetings is August 23, 2013. BEST WISHES FOR A HAPPY NEW YEAR Or your pemm~ mintage) YOUR NAME A $19.70 l'/Z"x 2" D $78.80 31/4"X 4" May you be inscribed inthe Bookof zifi foa Happy and Hea- hy Year (or your personal message) YOUR NAME May the New Year be ever joyous for You andYour Faro@ (or your personal message) YOUR NAME E DATE OF ISSUE: $98.50 3 ,"x s" August 30, 2013 L'Slana Tovl Tikctevu (Or your personal mssage) YOUR NAM1 REETINGS AND BEST WISHE FOR A I APPY NEW YEAR (Or your personal me,,sage) B $39.40 31/4"X 2" C $59.10 31/4"X 3" YOUR NAME Mail to: HERITAGE GREETING, P.-O. Box 300742, Fern Park, FL 32730 i Please run my greeting in your holiday issue. I would like ad (circJe one) A B C D E. I am enclosing a check in the amount of $ (all ads must be paid for in advance). I Or please bill my credit card (check one):-Visa Master Card: Card No. ] Expiration Date Signature I Name Address ] City/State/Zip [ Name(s) on greeting should read: L If you have any questions, call HERITAGE at 407-834-8787. I J