From Balfour to medical miracles and fantastic voyages

The recent marking of the 120th anniversary of the First Zionist Congress, and that on November 2 we celebrate the Centennial of the Balfour Declaration, has us looking backwards as we move forwards.

The promise of Zionism we see every day in Israel. This was confirmed just a few weeks ago on September 11, 2017. What was only in the imaginations of the science fiction writers, the scenes from the 1966 classic science fiction thriller ‘Fantastic Voyage’ played out in real-time with real images inside the heart.  A team of cardiologists from the Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot conducted open-heart surgery, which was stunningly live-streamed on Facebook to 400,000 Israelis and other viewers, while Chief Cardiologist Prof. Kobi George gave a running commentary on the latest hi-tech medical innovations.

Prof. George introduced to the Israeli medical community 3-D imaging INSIDE the heart, using the latest technology, called Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). He remarked during the broadcast, “It looks like a science fiction movie in which we travel with a spaceship inside a main artery.”

The fascinating images of the Open Heart Surgery on Facebook video feed can be found at:

Tireless Professor George and Kaplan CEO, Dr. Carlos Gruzman, himself an expert in Emergency Medicine and Israeli Global Medical Rescue, left for the US for a two week coast-to-coast tour, with their opening set with a ‘kick-off’ breakfast briefing on the November 2 Balfour anniversary, hosted by New York Consul General Dani Dayan.

As Israel needs to share its life-saving expertise combating the affront of BDS proponents, and others who spread libels against the Jewish State, Kobi George and Carlos Gruzman will be taking their message of research and technology. The real story is that Israeli innovation is finding solutions to heart disease, the #1 killer of Women, Americans, and all those in the West.

Their trip includes stops in Washington, DC during the four day, two thousand strong Israeli – American Council Convention. This is complemented by meetings in New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Reading, PA, and capped with the three-to-four thousand Jewish Federation leaders meeting at the annual GA Conference, this year held in Los Angeles, CA.

Bringing with them videos and stories of Israeli hi-tech medical marvels, these “Top Docs” are preparing to show the reality of the dream of Herzl. They will give testament to the righteousness of the fulfillment of the dream, as did the forward looking Lord Balfour.

About the Author
Lou Balcher served from 2004 - 2013 as Director of Academic Affairs to Consulate General of Israel to the Mid-Atlantic Region. He also served as Education Director for Congregation Tifereth Israel in Bensalem, PA, and as administrator and teacher for Gratz College's Jewish Community High School. He is a former Membership Director for the Philadelphia and Cincinnati regions of B'nai B'rith International. For three decades, he has coordinated post-college young leadership programs for Young Jewish Leadership Concepts. Additionally, he consults as National Director of the American Friends of the Kaplan Medical Center, Rehovot, Israel which serves more than one million Israeli citizens.