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Russian immigrants

  • Don't call her the 'Russian candidate': Meet Ksenia Svetlova

    An interview with the latest addition to Tzipi Livni's 'Zionist Camp,' on the heavy price Israel will pay if it can't solve the Palestinian conflict, how much Russian and Mizrahi immigrants have in common, and whether the Labor/Livni list will consider forming a new government with Netanyahu. In the Israeli electoral system, party heads often times reserve spots on their parliamentary slates for candidates of their choosing — usually representing geographic regions, people of certain ethnic origins or for women. It would be a big mistake to reduce Ksenia Svetlova to the “Russian candidate” of the Zionist Camp, the joint list comprised…

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  • WATCH: In Israel, the ruble’s collapse hits hard for elderly Russian Jews

    Today’s generation of older immigrants from the former Soviet Union worked their whole lives — 30 years in Russia and 20 years in Israel. Up until six months ago, their pensions from Russia helped them stay above water. Since the sharp decline of the Russian ruble, however, many of them are now forced to survive on NIS 3,000 ($760) a month. The Israeli government has plans to help, but where’s the money?

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  • The downfall of Avigdor Liberman

    Without a distinct ideology or the support of Israel’s ultra-right, the days of Liberman dominating political headlines may soon be over. By Aaron Magid On the night of the 2009 election as Avidgor Liberman’s party jumped to unprecedented power with 15 seats, the popular Israeli satirical show "Eretz Nehederet" depicted Liberman ominously. Both Benjamin Netanyahu and Tzipi Livni huddled around Liberman begging for his support while Liberman surrounded by black clad bodyguards shot at Netanyahu’s foot to grab his attention. "The elections were a marvelous experience and they were also a final experience. There will be no more elections,” Liberman declared with the…

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  • The Russians came, the Russians stayed: A response to Uri Avnery

    In a recent article, seasoned veteran of the Zionist Left Uri Avnery claimed that the influx of Russian-speaking immigrants to Israel, living in self-imposed ghettos, is what pushed the country to the right politically. Lia Tarachansky counters that the Russian-speaking community never 'mingled' with other Israelis because it was never invited to do so, and that Avnery is ignoring the many contributions the immigrants made to the country. By Lia Tarachansky I was born in Kiev into a shifting, uncertain reality. While I was only learning to read, my parents split, the Chernobyl nuclear reactor blew up and the Soviet Union collapsed. I…

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  • Are we allowed to say Lieberman is a Soviet emigre?

    Stating the obvious is not racism Shmuel Sermontea-Gertel has basically accused me of being a racist, after referring to Avigdor Lieberman as a Homo Sovieticus. I contest that claim. The term “Homo Sovieticus” has a very distinct meaning. It refers to someone who accepted basic Soviet thinking, including blind acceptance of claims made by authority and isolation from and hatred of the outside world. You could add several other symptoms of the Soviet systems – disregard of human rights, contempt for democracy and the democratic process, and rampant racism towards “uncivilized people”, such as Asians or Muslims – and you…

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