Thursday, October 09, 2003

Israeli Politics
October 2003

Mark Biano

Dear friends and colleagues,

The last weekend was a long one for me. CNN brought the news about the suicide bombing at Maxim immediately after it happened on Saturday 4 October 2003, but without names of casualties. I logged to Haaretz newspaper website first thing Tuesday morning and was shocked to see that Mark Biano, age 29, and his wife were the first names on the list of casualties. I was literally shivering.

Mark was one of the best research students I've ever had in eighteen years of teaching. He submitted a seminar paper that, in my opinion, could have been developed into a very good MA thesis. His final grade was the highest in the class. As a matter of fact, his seminar paper was so good that I proposed to invest some more work in it and to submit the paper for scholarly publication. May I note that I rarely suggested this to an undergraduate student. Mark’s case was one of those exceptional occasions that a teacher feels he or she was truly enlightened by the impressive academic scholarship of a seminar student.

The article is still under consideration. I encouraged Mark to pursue MA in our department of communication and was happy when he decided to rejoin our department as a graduate student. I will miss him.

Mark was a highly motivated, serious person, with a somewhat shy smile on his face. He was a person that always thought at least two steps ahead. In everything that he did, he tried to do it in the best possible way. He was a dedicated student, a dedicated journalist, and I am sure a dedicated family man. When he spoke about his wife, his smile always became larger, and he seemed taller than he was. He was a delightful man to have around.

I called upon the University of Haifa authorities to seek a way to honour his name. One way that comes to mind is to call an excellence research scholarship upon his name. I hope the university will give this a serious consideration. If my Center for Democratic Studies will succeed in raising the necessary money for its operations, I pledge to establish a scholarship fund in Mark's memory.

The loss is a national loss. Mark had a promising career in front of him in the field of journalism. He was making his first steps in the local media in Haifa and I was certain that his talent would lead him to prominent positions.

Mark's photos are available on a website established by the Haifa Department of Communication:

Hoping for better days,

Israeli Politics