Monday, December 8, 2014

Panda diplomacy reaching Israel:

China to give two to Haifa zoo Hopefully, that is. 

First the Chinese pandas chief has to be convinced that the Haifa zoo is bear-worthy.

By Ruth Schuster 

HAREETZ | Dec. 2, 2014

Following a diplomatic tradition going back millennia, China will be gifting Israel with two giant pandas, if it decides that the conditions in the Haifa zoo meet the animals' needs.
The delightful duo, which are actually a primitive species of bear, would be the latest to travel further to China's "Panda Diplomacy," a policy first employed used by the Empress Wu Zetian in the year 658 AD to charm the Japanese emperor Temmu. The gift is not a casual one and China does not confer it on just anybody. It even has a specific person responsible for all the pandas in the world, who came to visit Haifa last week together with a gigantic 200-man strong business delegation, says the Haifa municipality public relations department. "I hope it works out," cooed a representative of the city.