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August 9, 2013

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PAGE 18A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, AUGUST 9, 2013 /" Tel Aviv---The ionosphere, one of the"regions of the upper atmosphere, plays an important role in global communications. Ionized by solar radiation, this electricity-rich region is used for the transmission of long wave communica- tions, such as radio waves. Now Professor Colin Price of Tel Aviv University's De- partment of Geophysical Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, working alongside Ph.D. candidate Israel Silber, has discovered that the ra- dio waves reflecting back to Earth from the ionosphere offer valuable news on cli- mate change as well. Their research shows that the strength of radio signals on the ground is- a reliable indicator of temperature change above. Price and his team used simple radio antennae on the ground to measure radio waves broad- cast by navigational trans- mitters around the globe, then compared information on the strength of these radio signals with data on temperature fluctuations in" the upper atmosphere. They discovered that cli- mate change in the upper atmosphere--caused by an abundance of greenhouse gases--may lead to a greater absorption of radio waves. Weaker signals could there- fore be indicative of greater climate change. Detailed in the Journal of Geophysical Research, this simple, cost-effective mea- surement can be a valuable contribution to the ongo- ing effort to track climate change, says Price, adding to measurements of ground o and lower atmospheric tem- peratures to create a more holistic picture. Global warming, upper atmospheric cooling On the Earth's surface and in the lower atmosphere, an increase of greenhouse gases has a warming effect, the gases acting as a "blan- ket" and keeping heat from escaping from the Earth into space. But these gases, including carbon dioxide, are increasing in the upper atmosphere as well, where they havea coo!ing effect. When cooled, the iono- sphere contracts and de- scends into the atmosphere to where air is denser--lead- ing to a higher absorption of radio waves, Price explains. By examining satellite-gath- ered data on the temperature in the upper atmosphere and comparing results to measurements of radio wave ampl!tudeS collected on the ground, the researchers were able to uncover a clear corre- lation, consistent over time. As the upper atmosphere gets colder, radio signals lose their strength. While the sun is certainly the driving force behind changes in temperature in this region, it accounts for only 60 to 70 percent of temperature variations, says Price. The remaining vari- ability could not be system- atically measured until now. By adding measurements of radio waves taken on the ground to solar radiation estimates, researchers can now explain approximately 95 percent of temperature changes in the upper atmo- sphere. Degrees of change According to Price, this new technique will be a valuable addition to cur- rent methods of monitoring climate change, such as the measurement of ground temperatures. Without the need for expensive equip- ment like satellites, monitor- ing the upper atmosphere can be done inexpensively and continuously. And be- cause temperatures in the upper atmosphere fluctuate more dramatically than those-on the ground--for every one degree of warm- ing in the lower atmosphere, there is a corresponding ten degree cooling in the upper atmosphere--changes are far easier to monitor. Using this system might reveal more about the iono- sphere than ever before. The region is notoriously difficult to monitor; there are no weather balloons or airplanes that can go high enough~ and it is too low for orbiting satellites. But with this method, it could be possible to study long and short term changes in the ionosphere, such as the impact of solar storms or thunderstorms on the upper atmosphere. Talks From page 1A peace talks have their roots in the warm relations that settlers and their Ameri- can friends have forged in Congress over the past two decades. "It was important to meet with the Yesha people," a GOP official said of the June meeting, using the Hebrew acronym for the settlers' council, "to find out who the settlers are, what they feel obstacles to: peace are, what Judea and Samaria means from a historical perspective." In addition to Salmon's letter, a perennial effort tO tighten a 1995 law requiring the United States to move its embassy to Jerusalem reap- peared just as talks resumed. The strengthened law would remove a presidential waiver that has enabled successive presidents to delay the move on the grounds of national security. Members of Congress behind both initiatives deny that the measures--neither in timing nor in substance-- are intended to scuttle the peace talks. On the contrary, the lawmakers say they are intended to improve the chances of success for the talks by.strengthening Israel's bargaining posi- tion and making American parameters clear to the Palestinians. "There will never be clear sailing as long as there are people who do not recognize Israel as a Jewish nation," said Rep. Doug Lamborn (R- Colo.), one of the sponsors of the new Jerusalem bill. l~ut the settler leaders and the right-wing pro-Israel groups that support them are more blunt about their objectives. "I told the congresspersons that the strategic choice that John Kerry made to go on with the conventional peace process to try to renew negotiations.., will have cata- strophic consequences for the American national interests," Dayan said."Becausewhen he fails--and he will fail--the fact that the secretary of state of the United States failed will be noticed very clearly in Tehran and in Damascus and in Moscow and in Pyongyang." Daniel Mandel, the director of ZOA's Center for Middle East Policy, said his group was gearing up to push back against talks it believes are doomed because the Pales- tinians remain unwilling to accept Israel's existence as a Jewish state. "Our strategy now that negotiations have resumed is to unblinkingly focus on the unregenerative nature of Abbas' Palestinian Author- ity," Mandel said, referring to Mahmoud Abbas, the P.A. president. Efforts to exert congres- sional pressure to affect the outcome of peace talks are not new. Followfng theiaunch of the Oslo peace process in the early 1990s, right-wing Israelis and their allies helped pass a congressional bill that would move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem-- a move that would buttress Israeli claims to the city whose ultimate fate was to be determined by Israelis and Palestinians. A separate bill sought to prevent U.S. troops from pa- troling the Golan Heights to help cement a peace deal with Syria. Yitzhak Rabin, then the Israeli prime minister, expressed his frustration at both moves. Back then, the right-wing- ers had mainstream allies; the American Israel Public Affairs Committee lobbied for the Jerusalem law. AIPAC did not respond to requests for comment on the new Je- rusalem bill, which is backed by the ZOA. Republican House officials say their members aredeeply skeptical about the renewed talks, which were launched after an intensive round of shuttle diplomacy by Kerry. Sensitiveto Republican mis- trust of President Obama's foreign policy agenda, Dayan said he attempted to persuade House leaders that the peace process would harm U.S. interests. "I would like Congress to explain to the State Depart- ment that this is a morally improper way to conduct di- plomacy,'? Dayan in an inter- view this week. Sarah Stern, the direc- tor of the Endowment for Middle East Truth, said her primary concern was for the families of those killed by the released prisoners, but she acknowledged there was a dividend in alerting Americans to the dangers of the peace process. "I can't petition the Israeli government as an American citizen, I can only petition our officials," Stern said. "But as a sidebar, it's painful to see Israel has to go through so much just to get the Palestin- ians to sit down, and it's avery sad thing that Israel has been subject to so much pressure by Kerry." Cohen From page 4A inspection tean s dispatched by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA,)a body that has consistently warned against the dangers of Iranian duplicity. In the interim, while western negotiators have anx- iously awaited a response that, so far, has not been forthcom- ing, the Russians have gotten in on the act with a separate initiative. The declared aim of Putin's Iran visit--the latest Rfissian media reports have it slated for Aug. 12 or Aug. 16--is to try and get the negotiations back on track. Close behind is another aim;, Putin wants Antey-2500 air defense sys- tems. The price tag--S120 million--is a hefty one for a country whose economy has been badly damaged by international Iran sanctions, but then the Iranian regime has never placed the needs of its citizens above its military imperatives. Purchasing such a system would undoubt- edly make the prospect of a pre-emptive strike on Iran's nuclear facilities far more risky. At the same time that.the Russians weighed in, the Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki, who is close to the Iranian regime, offered to play the role of broker Iran .to purchase Russian-- between Washington and manufactured S-300VM - Tehran. The advantages for Maliki are obvious, in that taking on such a task would further endear him to the Americans without alienat- ing the Iranians. And the initial State Department reactionm"We are open to direct talks with Iran in order to resolve the international community's concerns about Iran's nuclear program," said State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell--was pretty positive. Again, this emphasis on process detracts from the far more important challenge of achieving results, thus enabling the Iranians to do what they have always done: buy time while continuing the nuclear program's de- velopment. The only foreign politician to openly express skepticism has been Israeli Prime Minis- ter Benjamin Netanyahu. "On Iran, it is crucial that we see a change in Iran's policy, not a change in style, but a change in substance," Ne.tanyahu recently said. Knowing that Netanyahu is far more isolated than, by rights, he should be in holding such a position, Iran has felt confident enough to lampoon him as awarmonger who is always crying wolf. In fact, Netanyahu's anxi- eties are firmly based in reality. David Albright, the respected head of the Wash- ington, DC-based Institute for Science and International Security, wrote in a July briefing paper that Iran "is expected to achieve a critical capability in mid-2014, which is defined as the technical capability to produce stlffi- cientweapon-grade uranium from its safeguarded stocks of low enriched uranium for a nuclear explosive, without being detected." Once that capability is achieved, there is no going back. Moreover, for as long as western policy is bogged down in the bizarre game of talking about talks, the Iranians have no political incentive to scale the nuclear pro'gram back. .The only measure that could coqceivably slow the process involves tighter Iran sanc- tions and a stronger effort to close down smuggling routes, and even then, there is no guarantee that the west will gain the upper hand. As Rouhani himself said, back in 2005, "[I]f one day we are able to complete the fuel cycle and the world sees that it has no choice--that we do possess the technology--then the situationwill be ~lifferent." Yet here we are again, vainly hoping ttiat this time, things will be different, that aregime that has consistently and suc- cessfully lied will somehow stop doing so. Ben Cohen is the Shill- man Analyst for His writings on Jewish affairs and Middle Eastern politics have been published in Com- mentary, the New York Post, Ha'aretz, Jewish Ideas Daily and many other publications. Chabad From page 1A keep our Jewish flame alive. Thank you again for starting to write this torah for me and my friend~." Rabbi Pape, a profession- ally licensed torah scribe from Crown Heights, N.Y., was visibly moved by the en- thusiasm of the congregants of all ages. He addressed the spirited crowd with an enthusiastic, "What a turnout!" On a more serious note, .he reflected that Central Florida was under "a strong spotlight", and that it was a pleasure to come together as one community. Pape thanked those instrumental in bringing the torah to Or- lando. Then, he explained the process of how a torah comes together. He remarked, "When a son is very little, a father teaches him to say the words of the torah. When he is three years old, he ~earns to write the black letters (of the torah) onto white paper. At three learning changes from oral to visual." Pape continued, "After three years, the (North Orlando Chabad) community is now inspired to have a hands-on visual torah of its own." He concluded, "I stand inspired and uplifted (by the large show of support), as I begin writing the first few lines of the torah." Rabbi Majesky thanked the crowd for their sup- port;, "Today we start ourown torah--'One people, One Community, One Torah.' This is not just a torah, but a new chapter for our community... May the new torah bring lots of blessings into your life, with mazal nachas and many blessings. Three and a half years is a short time to have our own torah. May we continue to grow--from strength to strength." Art From page 1A honest conversation about what we mean when we say, over and over, Never Again," she says. "We want this amazing art to inspire people, to give them the courage to act wisely on behalf of others." The artists, and .their beliefs in how art can have an impact, are a critical part of that conversation. One of the exhibitors, Helen Zajkowski, a native of Poland now living !n Connecticut, says "My installation con- sists of six pieces, signify- ing six million Jews that perished during the Holo- caust .... (it) is an installation composed of scissors and matches. Scissors signify humiliation by cutting of hair, and matches signify burning of homes and burn- ing of humans." She says a visit to Aus- chwitz years ago changed to use her talents to address social issues. "We live in the 21st cen- tury where information is at our finger tips," Zajkowski says, "and world events can be her as a person. After that seen in our living rooms. We moment she's been driven have the technology to influ- ence What is happening across the globe. Each one of us can do something. Helen Keller said, 'I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something, I will not refuse to do "something that I can do.'"