It’s the Palestinians’ turn

1874614-5It seems every option has been tried and the results are still the same – Bibi, like Putin and Assad, is still here and we can’t get rid of him. We must qualify that comparison: Putin has absolute control of the media and liquidates the opposition, and Assad liquidates the Syrian people with bombs and starvation. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, on the other hand, has to contend with a hostile press, but he still succeeds in charming his voters. The forces needed to defeat him simply do not exist in Israeli society. He enjoys the loyalty of the repressed, true, but the reason for his success is mostly the lack of an alternative. Bibi versus “Boujie” (Isaac Herzog) is really not a fair fight – that was clear enough even before they stepped into the ring.

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Daam and the general elections

daam_LogoThe central committee of the Daam Workers Party convened in the run-up to the general elections, following the unraveling of Benjamin Netanyahu’s third government. This document discusses the backdrop to this, the local and regional political forces which led to the crisis in which Israeli society and the Arab countries of the region find themselves, and the circumstances which led to Daam’s decision not to run in these elections.

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Bibi’s contribution to the “very bad” deal with Iran

Israeli PM Netanyahu Addresses Joint Meeting Of CongressHe spoke before Congress for 40 minutes, sweeping it off its feet. It was, without doubt, the speech of his lifetime, although according to Israeli pollsters it added merely one Knesset seat to his shrinking tally of votes. He did the unthinkable by by passing Barack Obama and turning directly to the American people from the congressional podium, pummeling their president with hard truths. He showed daring and pluck, as if he himself were the American president, explaining with didactic patience the questions that stand at the basis of the agreement that is shaping up with Iran.

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Israeli elections: Who to vote for?

Who shall we vote forThe parties have been registered, and the campaigns for the 17 March elections are running full throttle. “Bottlegate”, suspicions of foreign funding, and accusations of attempts at a putsch – these are the dominant issues in the press. The polls change daily, playing havoc with the manic depression of the parties struggling for survival. Yesterday Meretz was hopping with delight to the words “I want Meretz in government”, and today it has turned against the Zionist Camp (Labor with Yizhaq (Buji) Herzog and The Movement of Tzipi Livni) with a huge paid ad, announcing, “This week he acts like Bibi, tomorrow he’ll sit with Bibi in the government.” They’re referring to Herzog, of course, and this solves part of the dilemma – we won’t be voting for the Zionist Camp.

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“Anyone but Bibi” Strengthens the Israeli Right Wing

Herzog and Livni join forces

herzog-livniWe’re headed for elections again. Less than two years have passed since the meteoric ascent of the “brothers” Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett, who forced Binyamin Netanyahu into a coalition without the ultra-orthodox parties, and already Netanyahu is dismantling the government to seek a fourth term. His dream is to go back to the “ideal” composition of the previous government, which brought together the ultra-orthodox, Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu, and Ehud Barak’s Labor party. But it is not at all clear that Netanyahu will manage to make this dream come true. He now faces a broad alliance of his past victims, including the ultra-orthodox, Lieberman, Lapid, Tzipi Livni, Moshe Kahlon, and Labor head Isaac Herzog – all past ministers in his governments.

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Anthem for the Jewish Nation-State Law

צעדת דגליםGood things come in pairs, and the Jewish Nation-State Law already has an anthem. Music and lyrics: Amir Benayoun. (For a translation of the lyrics, see this page.) Since peace, as everyone knows, is Israel’s most fervent desire, it is fitting that the first words to this anthem are peace – shalom, salaam aleikum – and are spoken apparently by a man named Ahmed. According to the song, Ahmed embodies the Arabs who stick a knife in your back, for whom treason is second nature. This anthem is perfectly suited to the Jewish Nation-State Law, as it expresses the Israeli (Jewish) nation’s innermost feelings. It seems the existing national anthem – Hatikva (hope) is outdated and no longer reflects the new Israeliness which has formed during the 66 years of the state’s existence. The new anthem is straightforward and easy to understand – every Jew can learn it by heart. It is based on a primordial and very effective fear, and mobilizes the soul’s moral strength for a higher purpose: hate.

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Oslo out, Autonomy in

bogy02_waSince Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon’s last visit to Washington, tension between Israel and the White House has only increased. The State Department and the White House refused to have anything to do with Yaalon, who once accused Secretary of State John Kerry of having a “messianic fervor,” and he was left talking shop with his US counterpart, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. For the others, he has become a persona non grata. This boycott of the Israeli defense minister caught most of the headlines, but the important interview Yaalon gave to the Washington Post, appearing on the paper’s website on October 24, was mostly ignored. This interview reveals that the Israeli government has buried Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s commitment to the two-state idea.

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