The Israeli Right has embraced PM Binyamin Netanyahu for the hardline positions he expressed in his Washington visit, and for the masterly control of US politics he has showed. Yossi Verter quotes in Haaretz a funny exchange between the PM and Likud MK Danny Danon, who until recently led the opposition to Netanyahu in his own party: ...the Likud faction, which has a hard-line right-wing bloc, was easy on Netanyahu. MK Danny Danon told him at the meeting, "You gave an excellent speech in Congress. Maybe you should run for president on behalf of the Republicans? I hear they're looking…Read More...
Just as our speeches are old news, we too refuse to change with the times. While the region becomes more democratic, Israelis still cannot accept their share of the responsibility, choosing instead to repeat familiar clichés By Eyal Clyne a) Netanyahu's speech before Congress: Just a speech, what’s the big deal? Ha’aretz reports that following Netanyahu’s speeches to AIPAC and Congress last week, his popularity soared 13 percent among Israelis. Netanyahu said nothing new, and didn’t make any promises for change, and yet most of my fellow Israelis absolutely loved it. 46 percent went as far as reporting that it…Read More...
Referring to the discrimination of Arabs got Yonit Levy into troubles with Israel's regulating body for commercial broadcasting Yesterday Israeli news reported that the county's Second Authority for Television and Radio would be investigating the conduct of Channel 2 broadcaster Yonit Levy during transmission of Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech to congress last week. The Second Authority is the regulating body for all commercial broadcasting in Israel. Levy reportedly added in her own commentary while translating The Prime Minister's speech. After Netanyahu said that Of the 300 million Arabs in the Middle East and North Africa, only Israel’s Arab citizens enjoy real…Read More... | 26 Comments
A demonstration against the settler takeover of East Jerusalem was held in the neighborhood of Ras al-Amud yesterday afternoon. The demonstration was organized by members of the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity group, an Israeli led nonviolent protest movement based in Jerusalem. Days before the demonstration, a new and illegal Jewish settlement was inaugurated in Ras al-Amud with name of Ma'ale HaZeitim. Yesterday's demonstration was a nonviolent exercise of the right to protest the illegal Israeli act of creating new settlements in occupied East Jerusalem. Israeli police reacted with excessive and violent force against the chanting Jewish protesters. For the first time, police used electronic stun guns against protesters who,…Read More... | 37 Comments
The gambling billionaire, who publishes the pro-Netanyahu "Israel Hayom" tabloid, said he objects to an agreement with any of the current Palestinian leaders Unlike the confrontation between the White House and Jerusalem over the settlements during the administration's first year, I think that the current rift has more to do with tones and personal mistrust than actual policy differences. More than anything, it seems that President Obama's Middle East speech was meant to help Israel avoid isolation at the UN, but Netanyahu overreacted, and later decided to play tough, mainly for political reasons. As I wrote yesterday, it worked out…Read More... | 17 Comments
According to the Jerusalem Post, only 12 percent of the Jewish public views President Obama as "pro-Israeli." Israel Hayom's poll has Netanyahu's Likud party picking up five seats following the PM's US visit Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can be satisfied with the result of his visit to the United States. A new poll published today shows growing support among the Israeli public for his positions regarding the two-state solution. According to the "Hagal Hachadash" poll, published by the pro-Neatnayhu tabloid Israel Hayom, only 28 percent of the public support president Obama's guidelines for a solution based on the 1967 borders.…Read More... | 3 Comments
The fact that Arab countries treat their citizens badly doesn't give Israel the moral or legal authority to treat its Palestinian citizens poorly. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech before the U.S. Congress can easily be characterized as hypocritical and inconsistent. He presented Israel as the country seeking peace while speaking of the Palestinians as enemies of reconciliation and coexistence. His hypocrisy didn't stop with issues of the occupation and Palestinians in the West Bank. He went on to brag about Israeli democracy being a model for the world. He shamelessly claimed that Arabs in Israel have more rights than…Read More... | 20 Comments
I may have gotten there first, but ThinkProgress blogger Matthew Yglesias had the same reaction to Netanyahu's speech as I did: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said a lot of things in his address to a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress on Tuesday, most of them foolish and some of them offensive. But one of his very first statements was among the most important: "Israel has no better friend than America," he claimed, "and America has no better friend than Israel." The former is accurate. The latter is absurd. These are almost my exact words, and I am obviously…Read More... | 7 Comments
While Netanyahu was still reeling from his political victory following his US trip Wednesday, back at home, Interior Minister Eil Yishai and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat and other government officials made good on Netanayhu's promise to maintain the occupation in Jerusalem by staging a provocative ceremony to inaugurate 60 housing units already constructed in the Palestinian neighborhood of Ras el Amud in East Jerusalem. This settlement, known as "Maale Zeitim" and owned by Florida tycoon Irving Moskowitz, was begun in the 1990's under Ehud Olmert's premiership and is an ugly barricaded building under constant 24-hour surveillance (funded by my tax shekels)…Read More...
Support for a two-state solution based on 67' borders is likely to decline in the near future A new poll by Haaretz shows a bump of no less than 13 percents in Prime Minister Netanyahu's numbers following his visit to the US, in which he expressed his opposition to a return to the 1967 borders and for a compromise in Jerusalem. 47 percent of the public see the trip as a success, and 51 percent of Israelis are currently satisfied with their Prime Minister. A Maariv poll published yesterday saw a rise in the Knesset seats of Netanyahu's Likud party,…Read More... | 10 Comments
None of the promises of democracy Prime Minister Netanyahu mentioned is fulfilled in the occupied territories By Hagai El-Ad "This path [to liberty] is not paved by elections alone. It is paved when governments permit protests in town squares, when limits are placed on the powers of rulers, when judges are beholden to laws and not men, and when human rights cannot be crushed by tribal loyalties or mob rule." Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech before a joint meeting of Congress, May 24, 2011 The focus in Netanyahu's speech on the – truly – "epic battle now unfolding in…Read More... | 8 Comments
American Zionism is at a dangerous crossroads. At the AIPAC conference days ago, Max Blumenthal asked some participants about the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. The answers he got were shocking for their ignorance but not surprising. What I saw in this video is the American Zionist movement with AIPAC at its head is becoming one based on faith and not political reality. No longer are facts or even logic necessary for one to be 'pro-Israel.' In fact, factual analysis of the present situation is often critiqued for being biased or ungrounded in historical reality of Israel. American Zionism is characterized by people with…Read More... | 2 Comments
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