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Benjamin Netanyahu

  • Unraveling Netanyahu's Sephardic spin

    Netanyahu knows that even in 2016, Mizrahim have the ability to kick him out of power. Benjamin Netanyahu has seen better weeks. Between being strong-armed by members of his cabinet over the confirmation of Avigdor Liberman as defense minister, and the fact that his wife, Sara, may soon be indicted over her unscrupulous handling of the prime minister's households, the past few days have been rough. But amid the turbulence, Bibi was able to find a golden calf and, true to form, milk it for all its worth. [tmwinpost] On paper the story seems both simple and innocuous: early last…

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  • Israelis are no longer buying what Netanyahu is selling

    Never has a prime minister appointed a defense minister so far beyond the consensus. For the first time in a decade, it feels like fewer people truly buy into Bibi's lies and theatrics. By Alon Mizrahi Throughout his years in the public spotlight, Netanyahu and his advisors have been successful at doing one thing: to completely control the story of the State of Israel. It does not matter whether they were able to do so because they are talented at doing so, or because they use deeply-entrenched Jewish and Israeli motifs: victimhood; persecution; siege mentality; the Arabs as a representation…

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  • Why I'm not afraid of Avigdor Liberman

    My dear leftists, there's really no reason to ask the last person to leave Israel to turn out the lights, as many of you have done over the last 48 hours. Most chances are that things will remain just as bad as they are – which is, in itself, hardly a reason to rejoice. By Gilad Halpern The pioneering 1970s rock band Kaveret (Hebrew for beehive) was groundbreaking in many respects. Other than their huge musical contribution, the band's repertoire included comical, sometimes nonsensical songs that stood in stark contrast to the earnest, stuffy folk songs that had hitherto characterized…

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  • Avigdor Liberman's new job: Control over four million Palestinians

    Netanyahu may have found an opportunity to take revenge on the old IDF elites, but in doing so has put one of Israel's most hawkish politicians in charge of the occupation. Avigdor Liberman's appointment as defense minister is, in my eyes, one of Netanyahu's most surprising moves (in fact, on Wednesday I argued that it wouldn't happen; two hours later I was proven wrong). Netanyahu is a careful politician that does not like big egos surrounding him, and Liberman is Liberman — a person who deliberately chooses to be unexpected and undisciplined — even when it doesn't serve his interests…

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  • Go ahead Herzog, join the coalition

    The fact that the head of Israel's opposition could soon join forces with Netanyahu may actually bode well for the Israeli Left and Palestinian citizens alike. The Israeli media has been beside itself this week with the possibility that the head of the opposition Isaac Herzog, leader of the Labor Party cum Zionist Union, may join Prime Minister Netanyahu’s governing coalition, the executive branch of the Israeli government. Roughly two weeks of chatterbuzz about Herzog-Netanyahu negotiations have yielded the usual five stages of rumors: from denial (“there are no negotiations”); to low expectations (“they’re just talks, they won’t lead to…

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  • If Israel's generals are moral, let them prove it

    Defense Minister Ya'alon has been heralded as the Left's newest spokesperson after repeatedly speaking out against Israel's political leadership. Let's not forget that this is the same guy who called Breaking the Silence 'traitors.' After reserving a spot among the "left-wing pragmatists" for openly stating that executing a dying man, and especially while on camera, is not such a good idea, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon continues to excite the Israeli peace camp. "Keep speaking your mind — even if it differs from the positions and ideas voiced by senior commanders or the political leadership," Ya'alon told IDF officers. His summons…

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  • 'The Jews are heading to the polls in droves'

    It turns out that one of Benjamin Netanyahu's most notoriously divisive statements in recent years reflects, almost identically, an anti-Semitic election slogan exposed and decried by none other than the founding father of right-wing Zionism, Jabotinsky. By Gilad Halpern Ze'ev Vladimir Jabotinsky, the founding father of the Zionist right and forebear of Likud, has been said to turn in his grave so many times he could produce enough energy to electrify a few new settlements. [tmwinpost] It is often said that Jabotinsky, a liberal nationalist who imbibed 19th century romanticism, would have had nothing but contempt for the lowbrow jingoism that…

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  • Why Netanyahu is doubling down on the Golan Heights

    In less than a week, the Israeli prime minister admitted to military action in Syria and declared to the world that Israel will never relinquish the Golan Heights, which it unilaterally annexed 35 years ago. By Shemuel Meir What led Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to wake up one fine day and declare, during a highly publicized but insignificant reserve duty exercise in the Golan Heights (and without the army Chief of Staff present, as is customary) that “we struck Syria dozens of times”? Was it a slip of the tongue stemming from the overconfidence that has become so typical lately?…

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  • What's so threatening about human rights?

    The Right doesn't reject the concept of universal human rights because it threatens the Zionist project, they do so because it would mean seeing Palestinians as equals.  By Dror Etkes There is a positive aspect to the continuing, orchestrated campaign by Israel's right-wing government and its helpers against "leftist" organizations, which many seem not to be paying attention to. As the campaign goes on, it helps create an intuitive, collective understanding for most people who have refrained from dedicating their life to understanding the inner politics of left-wing organizations in Israel, that there is no room for the artificial barrier…

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  • Netanyahu responds to Leahy with a strange string of lies

    The prime minister shoots off a sharply worded letter to a senior American senator who dared question Israel's human rights record. That Netanyahu thinks anyone reading it will do anything but howl is worrying sign about his judgement. In mid-February, Senator Patrick Leahy, together with 10 other Democratic Senators, wrote a letter asking U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to investigate the possible violation of human rights by Israel, as a U.S. foreign aid recipient. The letter, which only made news in Israel on Wednesday, was prompted by suspicions of numerous extrajudicial killings of Palestinian suspected attackers over the last…

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  • Israeli public opinion solidly backs Hebron soldier

    Only one-fifth of Israelis say the prime minister, defense minister, and the IDF chief of staff did the right thing when they condemned the killing. Fully 68 percent believe otherwise. Based on the condemnations from top levels of the political and defense establishment, it appears that Israelis were actually disturbed by the video of an IDF soldier killing a wounded Palestinian who lay motionless on the ground. The issue still topped the news media on Sunday, with new details emerging: Haaretz reported on early investigations indicating the soldier acted of his own accord, then updated that the soldier had said “the terrorist…

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  • Netanyahu has nothing to teach Europe about terror

    Netanyahu is trying to paint Israel as a terror-stricken victim, while at the same time painting his country as one that has successfully defeated terrorism. No matter how he spins it, he cannot hide the fact that Israel is also an occupying power. What does Netanyahu want from Europe? That the continent take a lesson from Israel on… what exactly? Last week we saw, once again, the desperate attempt to promote Israel to the "enlightened" international community through the back door of the war against terror. The prime minister uses sentences like "we are all part of one, big fight,"…

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  • What will wake Israelis from their collective coma?

    Our collective moral compass has become so fundamentally twisted that even the most decent of people, those who are not considered extremists, believe that there is nothing wrong with shooting a man as he lies dying on the ground. One of the more dangerous and frustrating aspects of the fascism taking over the Jewish-Israeli public, led by its elected officials, is the way it is fed by every single thing that happens here. Nearly every piece of news pushes this process forward — even events that should serve as a warning sign. [tmwinpost] Take, for example, Netanyahu's comments on the Mufti.…

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