This is a fun, skeptical report on the various genome projects. I didn’t catch it when it first appeared in Ha’aretz:

” The circumstances which led to a visit by the head of the U.S. National Human Genome Institute astonished scientists in Israel. Collins has received many invitations to participate in scientific conferences in Israel, but finally arrived in the country as part of a scientific-economic mission organized by the Jerusalem Fund of Aish Hatorah, a religious institution located in the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City, which promotes, among other things, repentant return of Jews to their religion, and prevention of interfaith marriage. Collins, himself, was surprised to hear about Aish Hatorah’s activities. ‘Your politics are complex,’ he muttered in embarrassment. He came to Israel because, ‘this particular invitation was presented in a fashion that seemed pretty irresistible. It was clear this was going to be an interesting gathering of experts … It was also made clear to me that this is something that my government wants me to do.'”

May the Lord deliver scientists from “complex politics”. I think Collins should have given a talk on the genetic effects of “preventing interfaith marriage”.