By Bradley Martin, Originally published in JNS
“Do you remember when Leonard Nimoy said, ‘Live long and prosper?’” Dr. Frederick Krantz asked an audience at the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue of Montreal. Listeners chuckled in approval of his “Star Trek” reference, indicating that a large percentage were familiar with the iconic TV series and had fond memories of the late Canadian-Jewish actor. Krantz continued, “Well, that is very true. Israel is not only a power in the Middle East, but will be a power in space.”
The Canadian Institute for Jewish Research (CIJR) on April 14 held its 28th anniversary gala, an event titled “Israel in Space.” It was North America’s largest-ever gathering dedicated to Israel’s space exploration achievements, with an estimated 200 attendees, according to Krantz.
“My hope is that knowledge of Israel’s space program will show what a benefit the Jewish state is for mankind,” said Krantz, the director of CIJR.
The conference not only showcased Israel’s growing contributions to space exploration, but it was also a night dedicated in memory of the late Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon, who died in 2003 on the fatal mission of the Columbia space shuttle.