A new election poster of Netanyahu gloating about his relationship with the Russian authoritarian leader may have entirely missed the mark with younger Russian-speaking voters, revealing deep generational divides. By Lily Galili Over the past few years, Israel has seen a small stream of new immigrants from Russia. Tens of thousands of liberal, educated Jews from a fairly high socio-economic status are fleeing the country they had once thought they were going to spend their entire lives in, disgusted by the violent deterioration in democracy there. They are labeled the “Putin Aliyah,” in honor of the man who prompted their departure from Russia. [tmwinpost]…Read More... | 7 Comments
Snap elections just weeks after Israelis went the polls are the result of a rivalry between Liberman and Netanyahu, but that's just part of the story. The right is immersed in a crisis of identity, leadership, and politics. By Meron Rapoport What happened to Avigdor Liberman? Why did he insist on cutting short what will become the shortest Knesset term in Israeli history? Was it his deep personal hatred for Netanyahu or was he simply settling a score? Was it an opportunity to build himself up politically before disappearing alongside his small, sectorial party? [tmwinpost] Amid all the questions remains…Read More... | 30 Comments
Liberman's political maneuvering may just bring about King Bibi's downfall, but that doesn't mean secular liberals should forget the reasons they opposed him all these years. Avigdor Liberman has, over the past decade, exerted a greater impact on Israel’s political discourse than any other lawmaker. In just a few years, he made once unthinkable ideas — such as stripping Palestinian citizens of their citizenship and forcing them to swear oaths of loyalty to the Jewish state — part of the mainstream discourse. [tmwinpost] Today, Israeli liberals and their intelligentsia are ready to ignore or brush aside Liberman’s racist, hyper-nationalist remarks and polices, while…Read More... | 6 Comments
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...
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