Foto Friday – Gil Lavi’s Soldiers in White

September 4, 2009 - 6:59 PM by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Art, Foto Friday, General, health 

Gil Lavi is a world-class commercial photographer, portraitist and brand image consultant. He also has a keen eye for documentary photography, as seen in his series, “Soldiers in White” which explores the world of Israel’s emergency medical technicians at Magen David Adom.


The living quarters where sleep can be interrupted in a moment…


… as EMTs launch into action.

Lavi also takes special note of the relationship between religious and secular EMTs…



… and the camaraderie between male and female, young and old.


MDA’s heroic efforts in bringing medical services to all sides under the most trying circumstances have been well-reported by ISRAEL21c , but Lavi’s is a more intimate look. It’s a far cry from the high gloss commercial work for which he is famous — Lavi was named one of the 300 most influential Israelis under 40 for 2009 by Forbes magazine — but ties in to his photographic roots: during his army service, he was a photographer for the Ground Forces Command and then head of the IDF Still Photography Department. In fact, darkroom fluid flows in his veins: his father is renowned photographer Moshe Lavi (more about him, hopefully, on another Friday).

Other works by Gil Lavi can be found on his website at

How ’bout those apples?

February 19, 2009 - 10:18 PM by · 2 Comments
Filed under: coexistence, History and Culture, Politics 

ein-shemer-applesJust wanted to make sure you all caught that news item about Israel resuming its regular export of Golan Heights-grown apples to Syria. The idea is to allow Israeli Druze farmers in the Golan Heights — the controversial northern region of Israel that was wrested from Syrian control in 1967 — to market one of their main crops in Syria.

The Druze apples will be shipped in Red Cross trucks through the UN-patrolled border at Kuneitra, offering a diplomatic and economic solution for the Druze, Syrians and Israelis. For the Druze farmers and Syrians, it’s an important connection to the motherland, despite their settlement in Israel. For Israel, it shows the possibility of free trade with Syria, something that’s still quite hard to imagine.

The Druze say their apples are tastier than the Israeli apples, despite the fact that Israelis produce more apples, thanks to their more generous water allocations from the Israeli government. What I know about Israeli apples is that they often spend months in cold storage, leaving them somewhat tasteless once they cross the supermarket counter. And I also know that I’ve tried many tasty and/or quality Druze products, from Savta Gamila soap to the cured olives sold at the labane and fresh pita stands that line the road up the Hermon ski resort.

But hey. If we can make peace over a basket of apples, then I like them apples.


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