Israeli voters will head to the polls in three-and-a-half months to elect a new government. Here's what that means, and where the elections may go. After weeks of feverish speculation, the Israeli governing coalition voted unanimously on Monday to disband the Knesset and call early elections in April 2019. [tmwinpost] Prime Minister Netanyahu had kept the country on its toes since November when some Israeli news outlets irresponsibly reported that Israel was headed for elections following the resignation of Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman. Instead Netanyahu wriggled out of a tight spot and convinced his remaining coalition partners to stay for a…Read More... | 5 Comments
When Israeli military commanders call bereaved families from the field to confirm they’ve gunned down their child’s accused killer, security considerations are not at play — that's just an army exacting revenge. There is something almost spellbinding about the speed with which the Israeli government is tearing off the masks that once afforded its policies a veneer of decency. From the Jewish Nation-State Law to the cultural loyalty law to the law to legalize settlement outposts, from Prime Minister Netanyahu’s anti-Semitic friends to the blatant racism of his son who publicly yearns for a country cleansed of Palestinians — official…Read More... | 7 Comments
The political map in Israel hasn't fundamentally changed since a decade ago, when left-wing voters migrated to the center and centrist voters moved right. The last week has seen feverish speculation about the possibility of early elections in Israel, primarily against the backdrop of infighting about how to handle Gaza. Defense Minister Liberman resigned and the governing coalition teetered; but on Monday the Jewish Home party announced its intention to remain, pulling Israel back from the brink of elections — for the moment. The situation is so volatile that new elections could still be called early — in March or May.…Read More... | 21 Comments
Netanyahu understands that keeping Hamas in power comes at a heavy political price. But as long as it thwarts the possibility of a Palestinian state, it’s worth it for him. By Meron Rapoport Weak. Giving into to terror. Those were the words Avigdor Liberman used to describe Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his press conference on Wednesday announcing his resignation as defense minister. The severe remarks came a day after Netanyahu agreed to a ceasefire with Hamas, following the most violent flare-up on the Gaza border since the 2014 Gaza war. [tmwinpost] Liberman’s resignation, first and foremost, stems from political…Read More... | 6 Comments
The resignation of Defense Minister Liberman could very well trigger elections as early as next March. Many will be going the polls with one question in mind: how much force should we use against Palestinians? Israel appears to be going to early elections. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman on Wednesday announced that he is resigning from his post, and that his party, Yisrael Beytenu, will leave the ruling coalition over what he called Netanyahu's "surrender to terrorism." The surprise resignation came just a day after Israel and Hamas agreed to a cease-fire, ending the most violent flare-up the Gaza border has seen since the 2014 war.…Read More... | 34 Comments
An entire Palestinian village is facing destruction. What follows will dictate the fate of Palestinian communities all over the West Bank. By Hagai El-Ad Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s recent op-ed in the Jerusalem Post – designed to whitewash the war crime of the destruction of an entire Palestinian community in the occupied West Bank – is riddled with lies and distortions. [tmwinpost] The very premise he posits in his opening sentence is untrue. Liberman writes of “a judicial ruling for the relocation of a small group of squatters from Khan al-Ahmar.” The High Court of Justice's ruling, however, actually addressed…Read More... | 10 Comments
With a green light from the Supreme Court, Israel is set to a demolish an entire Bedouin village in the West Bank. Human rights advocates warn that the demolition would constitute a grave violation of international law. Israel’s Supreme Court approved a government plan to demolish an entire Bedouin village in the occupied West Bank last Thursday. Following the Court’s decision, army bulldozers may arrive at Khan al-Ahmar, the tiny Palestinian hamlet caught between the Israeli settlements of Kfar Adumim and Maaleh Adumim, any time after June 1. The ruling follows two lawsuits filed by Attorney Shlomo Lecker on behalf of…Read More...
Israeli leaders are relentlessly hammering home the idea that the kind of political dissent displayed by Natalie Portman is foreign. And dissenters, by definition, are not real Israelis. When Natalie Portman announced that she would not attend the lucrative Genesis Prize ceremony because she opposes Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, who was to present the prize to her, reactions in Israel were smoke-out-the-ears hysterical. [tmwinpost] Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan wrote her an impassioned open letter with gimmicky Star Wars references, to help Portman, who starred in the film, understand her mistakes. Jews in Israel and abroad bemoaned her fall into the…Read More... | 3 Comments
Frustrated but unbowed, organizers of the Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day ceremony hope this year's event will be the biggest yet. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman announced Tuesday that Israel would deny entry permits to 110 Palestinians who planned to participate in the annual Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony. [tmwinpost] Liberman called the alternative Memorial Day ceremony, organized jointly by Combatants for Peace and the Bereaved Families Forum, a "show of poor taste and lack of sensitivity that hurts the bereaved families who are most precious to us.” Israeli peace activists remained undeterred. “It’s always darkest before the dawn,” Nathan Landau, an organizer for the Israeli-Palestinian…Read More...
Disrupting Israel's insular political discourse will require fully activating the Palestinian leadership in Israel, grassroots and civil society organizations, and foreign governments and institutions. In August 2017, three thousand Israelis greeted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a rally in Tel Aviv organized by the Likud party. A few days earlier, media outlets reported that the Israeli police were close to recommending criminal indictments against Netanyahu regarding various corruption scandals after several of his close aides agreed to plea bargains in exchange for their cooperation with the authorities. [tmwinpost] Speaking to the crowd, Netanyahu accused the media and the political left…Read More...
The following is a prediction best left unfulfilled. Faced with the drums of war, one must remain resolute, even if there is no certainty that war will break out. Too much is at stake. And if war does not break out now, it will at a later time. It will materialize one way or another. By Idan Landau The writing is already on the wall: Israel will soon launch a military operation in Lebanon. Not a targeted attack on a weapons convoy or factory, but a simultaneous attack on Hezbollah's missile production and launch sites. The operation will take place at the same…Read More... | 1 Comment
The absurd arrest of a Palestinian worker who was mistranslated by the police is a reminder that Arabic has been turned into a tool to oppress the native population in this country. Israelis read Sunday morning that Israeli police had mistakenly arrested a Palestinian worker after relying on a Facebook translation of a post he had written a week earlier. The worker had uploaded a photo of himself standing next to a bulldozer with the caption, "good morning," which the police then misinterpreted to say, "attack them," leading to his arrest for incitement to violence. [tmwinpost] The incident exemplifies something about…Read More... | 3 Comments
The Israeli cabinet decided to accept Mahmoud Abbas' request that the electricity supply to Gaza be cut. The army has warned against doing so, but it seems that for Israel, Abbas' interests are more important than people's lives. Who says there is no coordination between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority? On Sunday evening, Israel gladly accepted Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas request to cut the already-dilapidated electricity supply to Gaza, in order to make life for its residents that much more difficult. Think about the significance of cutting electricity by 40 percent in the middle of a blazing summer.…Read More... | 7 Comments
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