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3-Year-Old Israeli Boy Baffles Doctors by Speaking English Without Ever Having Learned It

O’Neal Mahmoud, a 3-year-old from an Arabic-speaking Druze  family in the Golan Heights, Israel, has amazed doctors with his ability to speak English with a British accent without ever having been exposed to the foreign language.

Named after legendary basketball player Shaquille O’Neal, O’Neal Mahmoud didn’t speak at all until he was 2-years-old. Then he started making these unintelligible noises, and at one point started speaking fluent English and using phrases like “my dear” and “oh my goodness”, which are hardly ever used in his home village, near the Druze town of Majdal Shams, in northern Israel. Stranger still is the fact that O’Neal doesn’t actually know the Arabic equivalents of the English words he speaks. A speech therapist and clinical linguist who examined the toddler concluded that his level of English was that of a three-year-old who grew up in an English-speaking family, while his level of Arabic – his native language – was far below that.

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Meet Tova Saul – The Unsung Guardian of Jerusalem Old City’s Stray Cats

Ever since she moved to Jerusalem from Toronto, in the 1980s, Tova Saul has dedicated her life to looking after the street cats of Israel. She prowls the streets of the Old City carrying bags of food for the felines, provides medical attention to any injured animals she finds by either taking them to the vet, or welcoming them into her home, and takes females to be spayed in hopes of slowing down the rate at which the street cat population of Jerusalem has been growing for several decades. Some call her the “Cat Lady of Jerusalem”, but she is more of an unofficial chief caretaker of the stray cats in the Israeli city.

The Mediterranean basin in general is home to a lot of cats, due to the favorable climate – the weather is generally warm and winters are very mild. It is estimated that there are currently over two million street cats in Israel today, and about 100,000 of them are in Jerusalem. It wasn’t always like this. though. Up until the 1930s, the cat population was small, but under the British Mandate, felines were brought in to deal with the rat problem, and they thrived. They’ve been multiplying at such an accelerated rate that, a couple of years ago, the Israeli minister of agriculture suggested that all male or female cats be deported to another receptive country. That has yet to happen, but it gives you an idea of how authorities intend on dealing with the problem. That’s definitely not how Tova Saul sees things. She believes that compassion and responsibility are key to finding a viable solution to this issue.

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Israeli Restaurant Gives 50% Discount to Jews and Arabs Who Share a Table

32-year-old Kobi Tzafrir has come up with the perfect peace plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – bonding over hummus! He’s offering a 50 percent discount to Arabs and Jews who choose to share the universally popular middle-eastern dish at his Tel Aviv restaurant, ‘Hummus Bar’.

“Afraid of Arabs? Afraid of Jews?” his Hebrew poster on Facebook reads. “We don’t have Arabs here, we don’t have any Jews either… BUT we have humans here! And we have excellent real Arabic hummus! And fine Jewish falafel!” He’s also offering “free refills for all hummus dishes, whether you’re “Arab, Jewish, Christian, Indian, etc.”

Kobi revealed that lots of Arabs and Jewish people have stopped by his restaurant ever since he rolled out the chick-‘peace’ offer last Tuesday. “If there’s anything that can bring together these peoples, it’s hummus,” he said. But he admitted that his patrons were more supportive of what the promotion stood for, rather than the discount itself. He told Al Jazeera that he wants to show the world not all Arabs and Jews support violence in the region.

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This Mississippi Rancher Who Tried to Bring About the Second Coming of Jesus by Shipping Red Cows to Israel

Reverend Clyde Lott is a revivalist preacher and cattle rancher from Mississippi, who attempted to hasten the end of the world in a rather unusual way – by shipping red cows to Israel. He took up the challenge in accordance with an obscure injunction in the Book of Numbers, which states that without the sacrifice of a red heifer, the Jewish people cannot be purified and enabled to rebuild the Third Temple.

According to the Hebrew Bible, the apocalyptic countdown will play out something like this: Jews would return to Israel after 2,000 years – the Holy Temple would be rebuilt – billions of people would perish during seven years of natural disasters – the antichrist would rise and rule the world – the battle of Armageddon would commence somewhere near Israel – Jesus would return to defeat Satan’s armies and then preside over Judgment Day.

For things to turn out as prophesied, the Holy Temple needs to be rebuilt, of course, and purified with the sacrifice of a blemish-free red heifer. Some people even believe that the construction of the temple cannot be resumed unless a red cow that fits the description is actually born, signalling the beginning of the end. The heifer in question is mentioned specifically in Numbers 19:2: “Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring thee a red heifer without spot, wherein is no blemish and upon which never came a yoke.”

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Israeli Restaurant Offers 50% Discount to Patrons Who Turn Off Their Phones

Restaurant owner Jawdat Ibrahim is making his patrons an offer they cannot refuse – switch off your mobile, reduce your bill by half.

Ibrahim thinks smartphones have completely destroyed the dining experience. “Technology is very good. But just when you eat, just especially when you are with your family and your friends, you can wait for half-an-hour and enjoy the food and the company,” he says. “A lot of people, they sit down and they don’t enjoy their food.”

I must admit he does have a point there. These days, almost everyone looks more at their phones than the people beside them. Ibrahim is dismayed when he sees married couples or friends sitting in silence, staring at their screens and finally asking for their food to be reheated.

on-the-phone

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Become a Babe Magnet at Tel Aviv’s Babe Master School

If you’re looking for answers to questions like “what kind of men are women looking for?”, or if you want to learn how to strike up a conversation with an attractive woman, the Babe Master school in Tel Aviv, Israel, will teach you everything you need to know.

And who better to teach you how to pick up women, than an actual woman, right? Sharon Rubinstein inaugurated the Babe Master school, after her book, “What She Wants”, proved a big hit among Israeli men. Readers kept emailing her with more questions about how to get women interested in them, and she realized the book just wasn’t enough. “It’s like learning swimming from a book! Same idea!” she thought, and made the decision to create a practical course for men who wanted to learn the secrets of becoming babe magnets. Sharon created the Babe Master website, men started applying for her courses, and the rest is history…

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Dog Believed to Be Reincarnation of Lawyer Sentenced to Death by Stoning

A rabbinical court in Jerusalem recently sentenced a wandering dog to death by stoning, after they decided he was the reincarnation of a lawyer who offended the judges 20 years ago.

A few weeks ago, a large dog entered the Monetary Affairs Court, near the ultra orthodox neighborhood of Mea Shearim, scaring away visitors and refusing to leave, even after people tried to drive him away. One of the court’s judges remembered something that occurred 20 years ago – a secular lawyer who had offended the judges was cursed by them to reincarnate in the body of a dog (considered an impure animal by Halacha).

The lawyer in question passed away years ago, but one of the still-offended judges sentenced the poor dog to death by stoning, and ordered the task be carried out by the neighborhood’s children. Either the dog sensed the imminent danger and fled, or it was rescued by an animal lover, what’s important is he managed to escape before the sentence could be carried out.

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