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Friday, May 27, 2005

Open SESAME 

If Arthur Chrenkoff is looking for another "good news" beat, perhaps he should turn next to Israel and its neighbors. There is more than hatred in the region, and therefore a chance at peace in the long run. For example, Haitham Sabbah, a Palestinian living in Jordan, wonders whether SESAME can become an "oasis of peace" in the Middle East.
Here’s some good news from the Jordan: Israel, Iran, Syria, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Palestine Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Algeria, Jordan and many other countries from around the globe ... need no “Open SESAME magic” to be able to cooperate on an advanced scientific project.

In Al-Balqa’ Applied University, just north of Amman - and at a comfortable distance from the spotlight thrown by political conflicts - representatives of these countries are involved in developing SESAME, an acronym for Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East.

It’s a rare and possibly unique example of scientific cooperation between Israel and so many Arab countries. Libya is expected to join soon as an observer....

The political importance of the project cannot be underestimated. Scientists in the region work together in a spirit of cooperation for the sake of developing the Middle East.


SESAME, the Middle East’s first major international research center, is a synchrotron accelerator. It uses magnets to create a circular path for electrons traveling at nearly the speed of light, producing a beam of bright ultraviolet and X-ray light, about the diameter of a human hair, that is directed down beam lines to end stations.

SESAME's web site is here. The project obviously bears watching, yet Technorati reveals essentially no coverage from the blogosphere.

Sabbah, by the way, is an excellent blogger. I do not agree with his politics (he is more than a little anti-American), but he writes well on a very wide range of topics. I have blogrolled him under "Regional Blogs" down the sidebar.

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