As long as Governor Doyle is familiar with both Spain and Israel
The US Department of Energy is a co-sponsor of a solar power competition in Spain. Among the qualified entrants is a team from Israel. Outrageously, the Spanish government has informed Israel that their team is not welcome.
Spain is hosting the Solar Decathlon Europe in June 2010, an international competition in which teams from 20 universities compete by building a model house. A team from Israel’s Ariel University Center in the West Bank qualified as one of the finalists in October 2008 and began building the house, but was informed by the Spanish government in September that the Israeli team was being expelled from the competition because the university is located in the “occupied territories.”
“It is outrageous that a group of scientists is being barred from participating in an international scientific competition because they are from the West Bank,” Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) said in a Wednesday statement.
“The decision by the Spanish government to expel the Israeli team from Ariel University Center of Samaria represents a dangerous assault on the principles of scientific exchange and academic freedom, and contributes to the demonization of the state of Israel.”
Since Governor Doyle is close to the Obama Administration, buying trains from Spain, and just completed a trade mission to Israel, perhaps Doyle could use his clout to demand the Department of Energy withdraw it’s sponsorship of the event until the Israeli team is allowed to compete. Such a statement would certainly be consistent with the agreement he signed.
Doyle said Tuesday the agreement will allow scientists, engineers, and researchers from Wisconsin and Israel to work together in fields like water technology, advanced agriculture and biotechnology. Doyle says the agreement will help both Israel and Wisconsin compete in the global market.
By making a statement against Spain’s disgraceful behavior, Doyle might actually do some good before he leaves office.