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Prof. Stephen Hawking visits Neve Shalom - Wahat al-Salam

Tuesday 12 December 2006

We were honoured to receive in NSWAS the renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, in the framework of a one-week speaking tour in Israel and Palestine organized by the British Embassy. Prof. Hawking came to address a group of physicists who conduct here a bi-weekly professional meeting instigated by our resident physicist Yaakov Sonnenschein, a professor of physics at Tel Aviv University. Together with Prof. Hawking came British Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission and Consul Janet Rogan.

Whilst Prof. Hawking has been giving predominantly public lectures during his visit, this one was at a high level and intended only for physicists. According to Prof. Sonnenschein, the lecture was non-trivial, in that it presented for the first time a possible solution to a thirty-year old scientific conundrum concerning black holes.

Non-physicists present in the room would certainly have been challenged to give any kind of critique. They had to rely upon the glow in the faces of those who understood the subject material, and the enthusiastic conversations that continued long after Prof. Hawking had departed.

Besides giving lectures on science, Prof. Hawking has shown, during his speaking tour, a deep concern for what is happening in the Middle East. It is noteworthy that he agreed to come to NSWAS despite the short time-frame and the physical challenge of arriving here.

In his words before the lecture, NSWAS general secretary Rayek Rizek thanked Prof. Hawking for his consideration in coming to the village, spoke about the significance of NSWAS, and presented him with some mementos of his visit.


(l-r) Prof. E. Rabinovici, Prof. Hawking, R. Rizek, Prof. Y. (...) British Consul Janet Rogan (ctr) Rayek Rizek with Prof. Hawking Rizek speaking words of welcome Prof. Hawking Presenting gift to Prof. Hawking Presenting gift to Prof. Hawking Presentation With the audience With the audience

titre documents joints

  • Words of welcome by Rayek Rizek (PDF - 76.4 kb)

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