Das „Schlaglicht Israel“ bietet einen Einblick in die innenpolitischen Debatten Israels. Es erscheint alle zwei Wochen und fasst Kommentare aus israelischen Tageszeitungen zusammen. So spiegelt es ausgewählte, aktuelle politische Ereignisse wider, die die israelische Öffentlichkeit bewegen.
Die Themen dieser Ausgabe:
Israels Regierungschef Benjamin Netanyahu hat Grund zur Freude. Sämtliche Umfragen sagen ihm einen klaren Sieg voraus, wenn in Israel am 9. April gewählt wird. Anstatt die Kräfte zu vereinen, zerreißt sich die Opposition beim verzweifelten Versuch, die Wähler doch noch für sich zu gewinnen, in immer mehr Einzelteile. Vor laufenden Kameras kündigte Avi Gabai, Chef der Arbeitspartei, das Ende der Kooperation mit Tzipi Livni und ihrer Partei Hatenua an. Überraschend vor allem für die ehemalige Justizministerin, die mit zunehmend verbitterter Miene direkt neben dem Rednerpult sitzend die Pressekonferenz verfolgte, erklärte Gabai, warum das Bündnis der Zionistischen Union, der derzeit größten Oppositionsfraktion, scheiterte. Die Öffentlichkeit habe sich immer weiter entfernt, denn „eine wahre Verbindung und gegenseitige Unterstützung“, die zu einer guten Partnerschaft gehöre, habe es nicht gegeben. Die Zionistische Union ist die zweite politische Bewegung, die sich seit der Auflösung der Knesset spaltet. Zuvor nahmen die Minister für Justiz, Ayelet Shaked, und für Bildung, Naftali Bennett, Abschied von der nationalreligiösen Siedlerpartei, um mit ihrer „Neuen Rechten“ künftig fromme und weltliche Israelis für ihr nationales Lager zu gewinnen. Zu guter Letzt kündigte vor wenigen Tagen auch Ahmad Tibi, Vorsitzender der arabischen Partei Ta’al, den Austritt seiner Partei aus der Joint List an. Dazu kommt Benny Gantz, ehemals Generalstabschef, der noch eine neue Partei gründete. Israels Parteienlandschaft zersplittert sich mehr und mehr, dabei sind die ideologischen Unterschiede oft nicht sehr groß. Netanyahus absehbarer Wahlsieg basiert zu weiten Teilen auf den Machtallüren der einzelnen Listenchefs, von denen sich keiner mit Platz zwei zufriedengeben will.
Wanted: A new party for Israel’s Arabs
(…) on election day, Arabs will flock to the ballot boxes while the Joint List puts on a display of concern for them. With tribal solidarity playing a big part, and no other alternative available, it is safe to assume the 21st Knesset will continue to leave the Arab sector far behind. Many in the Arab community are disgusted by the Joint List, who they feel does not represent them. Ayman Odeh and those associated with him failed to understand that what concerns the Arab population is its internal social issues. The Joint List members are so preoccupied with Gaza and Ramallah, while we are struggling to make ends meet. Israel’s Arab society is drowning in its internal problems—violence, increasing crime rates and illegal possession of firearms, poor infrastructure and neglect, as well as financial gaps between the Arab and Jewish populations, all of which are on the rise. (…) The Joint List has proven that if we let them lead us, we will only be standing still. If we wish to narrow social gaps, build a better future, and enjoy coexistence, we must abandon this party. The Arab sector desperately needs new political leadership. If certain parties are wise enough to provide an alternative, they would be welcomed by the sane voices in the Arab sector. If those parties took it upon themselves to deal with the issue of minorities in Israel and incorporated Arab representation in the decision-making process, they would earn the votes of the many of us who are just looking for a new party to call home.
Yoseph Haddad, YED, 01.01.19
Zionist Union split can only hurt the Israeli opposition
(…) Gabbay, who in the past has accused leftists of having “forgotten what it is to be Jewish,” apparently forgot the overarching goal of the bloc he purports to lead as head of the largest opposition party in the outgoing Knesset. The center-left must focus on a single goal: replacing the government and saving the country from the series of disasters inflicted on it by the far-right rule headed by the corruption suspect Benjamin Netanyahu. (…) the camp must make every effort to stand strong against Netanyahu and his friends on the new right and the old, just as Livni and former Labor Party Chairman Isaac Herzog did in the 2015 election. (…) Livni may have changed political homes, but since the Sharon government she has professed a clear position, seeking peace with the Palestinians and a liberal democracy at home (…). Giving up a clear opposition figure like Livni does not strengthen the camp running against Netanyahu. (…) In the time remaining before the election, Gabbay and everyone else in the opposition must set aside their self-promotion and dedicate themselves to the enormous and necessary mission of replacing Netanyahu, united behind the leader with the greatest chance of victory. Political unification comes at the price of crushing aspirations and blurring positions, but there is no choice. (…)
Editorial, HAA, 02.01.19
Labor and Meretz should join forces
(…) Labor’s decision on Tuesday to dissolve its alliance with Hatnuah (…) will not change the electoral balance between the Right and the Left any more than Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked’s split from Habayit Hayehudi will. The only one who could potentially do that is Israel Resilience Party leader Benny Gantz, whose party is this election’s great unknown. (…) Tzipi Livni is an impressive politician whose contribution cannot be denied and whose personal road to the peace camp was long and admirable. But as such, its chances of independently passing the 3.25% electoral threshold and surviving politically are slim to none. (…) After its split from Hatnuah, Labor will need a new political alliance if it has any hope of rehabilitating itself after all the latest turmoil and Meretz is the natural choice. Labor leader Avi Gabbay may fear that Meretz is too leftist for him and Meretz Chairwoman Tamar Zandberg, for her part, may be wary of losing the party’s clear line should she team with the far more centrist Labor. But overall, this partnership can only benefit both parties. (…)
Yossi Beilin, IHY, 02.01.19
Opposition needs to unite behind Gantz or Lapid, despite bloc system
(…) the splits in the left are such that the latest polls convincingly show three parties of roughly equal size: Labor led by Avi Gabbay; Yesh Atid led by Yair Lapid; and the new grouping of former military chief Benny Gantz. Together they add up to the same number of seats as Netanyahu’s Likud, or perhaps just a few more. (…) while there are splits in the right-religious bloc as well, none of them has prevented Likud from remaining by far the largest party there. When one side has a large anchor party and the other is so divided, the subjective question of legitimacy becomes relevant. Even if the center-left somehow won 61 seats this way, it may well not hold. It is easy to see one of the parties joining Likud as the “winner” and giving Netanyahu the steering wheel again. Indeed, if not for the prime minister’s tragicomic legal troubles that scenario would be almost assured. (…) if they want a shot against Likud only three must remain: The Arab List, the left, and the center. There are various ways to get there, but it is probably the center – led by Lapid or Gantz – that has the best chance of being an anchor party with enough seats to come close enough to Likud to make the blocs math relevant again. (…)
Dan Perry, TOI, 03.01.19
The end-of-the-Netanyahu-era election
(…) This election is like a midterm — a transitional election aimed at the day after the Netanyahu era, which all the political players expect to end in the next year or two for legal reasons. Likud, fueled by his façade of stability and success, will go with Netanyahu to the end (and not one moment longer). After that, the party will embark on an extreme version of the chaos whose preview we’re seeing now with the participation of all the other actors. (…) the Labor Party is unfortunately approaching the end of its historic role. Yair Lapid, the most serious player among those inhabiting the so-called ambiance parties, is waiting hungrily to swallow up such Knesset seats as Labor still has, even though he is suffering from momentary weakness because Benny Gantz is now in fashion. What’s happening to the right of these parties is clearer. Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked have fulfilled religious Zionism’s worst fears by leaving it to its own woes. This duo, which is fortunately more committed to its own success than to the Greater Land of Israel, is hastening to improve its position in anticipation of Netanyahu’s fall. The abortive ultimatum they gave him six weeks ago and their new political arrangement herald the end of the Netanyahu era. The political revolt will be followed the electoral revolt. (…)
Ravit Hecht, HAA, 04.01.19
Israeli politics fractured: The system needs fixing
It is commonly accepted that in order to defeat Netanyahu, the political parties in the center and on the Left must unite and present a single and clear alternative. However, under the current system, this claim is simply not true. (…) Those from the center and the Left who believe a merger of parties would increase the total number of voters for their bloc should be reminded of the failure of the 2013 alliance between the Likud and Yisrael Beytenu, which received fewer Knesset seats than the two parties did in total when they ran on separate lists in the 2009 and 2015 elections. (…) On the other hand, Netanyahu was almost defeated when he ran against two major opposition parties, Labor and Yesh Atid, in 2013. It would appear that those on the Right have fully understood the rules of the game. The announcement by Ayelet Shaked and Naftali Bennett of the formation of a new right-wing party that will take votes from the Likud – but perhaps also from parties such as Kulanu, Yisrael Beytenu and the new center-of-center parties – stems from their understanding that the system rewards splits, and that there are voters who want to strengthen the government’s more right-wing leanings. (…) The only way to resolve the current state of affairs in Israeli politics is by offering incentives (…) which – starting from the next elections and from then on – will solidify the political system into two main blocs. (…) The myth of unification is sustained by the absurd notion that the size of the largest party is the determining factor in winning the election. The truth is, what really counts is the size of the coalition that can be successfully created. In order for there to be a reasonable match between the size of the coalition and the size of the largest party, incentives should be provided to politicians to run together, and for voters to vote for the larger alliances.
Gideon Rahat, JPO, 03.01.19
Don’t give up on this election
The game isn’t over yet. (…) Tzipi Livni’s vision of a big bang on the center-left still could become a reality, and it has to. If the main players (…) are still refusing to get on board, efforts should be made to compel them to. What is there to lose? (…) if things go well and polls show that the bloc gains popularity as the only merged slate facing all of the other splinter groups, more effective pressure will likely be put on the holdouts to become part of it. It certainly wouldn’t work without pressure. (…) The group would not be completely ideologically cohesive. Its members would not all come from the same school of thought, and while that is a considerable cost to bear, it is vital to creating a significant bloc that can really challenge Netanyahu, the Likud and the right wing’s undemocratic impulses. Even with all the difficulties entailed, it is only such a union that can set a personal example and convince the public that these are no ordinary times. (…) Who will head the movement? Whoever polling data show will produce the best results in the context of a shared leadership model. (…) We don’t have the privilege of giving up on this election. (…) At the very least, we need to make an effort.
Rami Livni, HAA, 09.01.19
A dirty race is losing the public
We can assume that many people are sick of the sights and sounds popping up at party events these past few days. Participants weren’t spared the invective opponents hurled at each other. In one party, the leader was called a tyrant and a liar, and other similar names. (…) there’s one thing voters shouldn’t do – stay at home on election day. Because voters have no other way of punishing parties for their consistently poor behavior. Only when attempts to sway voters become fruitless and phones are slammed down on volunteers, will the politicians realize they failed in their attempts to pander for votes. (…) Not voting is contrary to democracy. But the party leaders and some party officials have made democratic life so very tiresome recently. Wouldn’t it be appropriate to punish those who are fouling public life and creating such a sense of disgust? People failing to vote isn’t a sin. It’s a punishment for the sins of politicians.
Yaakov, Ahimeir, IHY, 13.01.19
Als Ungerechtigkeit empfindet es Benjamin Netanyahu, wenn es noch vor den Wahlen im April zu seiner Anhörung kommen soll. Die Polizei ermittelt in vier Korruptionsskandalen gegen ihn und empfahl in drei Fällen ein Verfahren gegen den Regierungschef. „Zweimal bat ich um eine direkte Konfrontation mit den Kronzeugen“, erklärte Netanyahu in einer pünktlich zu den Abendnachrichten im Fernsehen übertragenen Rede ans Volk. Beide Male sei ihm das verwehrt geblieben. „Wovor fürchten sie sich? Was haben sie zu verbergen?“ Er selbst habe keine Angst und würde sogar einer Konfrontation, die live übertragen werde, zustimmen, damit „die Öffentlichkeit die volle Wahrheit“ erkenne. Auch einem Regierungschef stehe ein gerechtes Prozedere zu. „Ich kenne die Wahrheit und bin mir der Wahrheit sicher“, meinte er und fügte in Anspielung an die Akte 4000, einem der Korruptionsfälle, lächelnd hinzu: „4000prozentig“. Die bereits am Nachmittag angekündigte „dramatische“ Ansprache des Regierungschefs enthüllte vor allem eins: Welche Kopfschmerzen Netanyahu die bevorstehende Entscheidung von Generalstaatsanwalt Avichai Mendelblit über ein Verfahren bereitet. Seine Rechnung, Mendelblit mit der Festlegung der Neuwahlen sechs Monate vor dem ursprünglichen Termin von einer Entscheidung abzuhalten, geht aller Wahrscheinlichkeit nicht auf. Kritiker warfen Netanyahu vor, er habe für seine politischen Zwecke das ganze Land über Stunden in Spannung versetzt. Von den drei Nachrichtensendern unterbrach einzig Channel 10 die Übertragung und machte „diesem Unsinn“ ein vorzeitiges Ende.
Mendelblit, decide before the election
(…) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu potentially faces serious criminal charges (…) the most significant factor now before the public (…) the biggest missing variable. (…) Netanyahu (…) threw the entire political system into a new election whose real purpose is to avoid the implications of the decisions now being made about potential criminal charges against him. (…) State Prosecutor Shay Nitzan was correct in saying it is incumbent on law enforcement authorities to act as speedily as possible to make decisions on the cases involving the prime minister.
To this should be added the comments of the former attorneys general and state prosecutors who have met with Mendelblit (…) and stressed to him that it his duty to the public to render his decision, at least the decision pending a hearing, before the election. Mendelblit’s persistent assertions that the thoroughness of the decision-making process will not be compromised by its speed does not change this fact. Before choosing whom to vote for, the public has a right to know the truth about the prime minister’s legal situation in all the criminal affairs in which he is a suspect. (…)
Editorial, HAA, 03.01.19
All eyes are on the attorney general
(…) the attack on Mendelblit has already begun, before any decision has been made about a hearing. It started with stray comments from a few MKs and ministers. It progressed to hints from the prime minister, who was visiting Brazil. And it reached a new height on Thursday in a video Netanyahu published denying that Mendelblit would file an indictment before the voters headed to the booths on April 9. (…) If Mendelblit decides to indict, it will not only become the central issue of the 2019 Knesset campaign, it will be the sole focus of the country’s politics. (…) In the 1999 Knesset election, Shas Party leader Aryeh Deri was indicted, and the party won 17 seats, making it the third-largest party in the Knesset. That pales in comparison to what an indictment of Netanyahu would do for the Likud now. The center-left election campaign is starting off on the wrong foot, with an astonishing drop in the polls, splits and factionalization, coup attempts in Labor – it’s a real mess. They comprise a lifeline in terms of the cases against Netanyahu. They’re all he has to grab onto. The calls from the Center-Left to indict him no matter what are no credit to their leaders, who are just proving that they can’t oust Netanyahu from the Prime Minister’s Office without the help of Mendelblit and his friends.
Mati Tuchfeld, IHY, 04.01.19
A Nixon moment
(…) Netanyahu, in an Internet connection hookup from the Prime Minister’s Residence (…) used prime TV exposure to appeal to voters’ sympathies by claiming he is not being treated fairly in the investigations. (…) For Netanyahu to commandeer the evening’s news reports (after already dominating the previous three hours with speculation about what he was going to say) and then squander that attention by delving into a highly technical legal aspect of a criminal investigation, seems like the desperate act of someone threatened by the likelihood of a pre-election indictment. (…) Netanyahu’s statements portray a prime minister who is more intent on his survival and concerned about his own welfare than he is about running the country. Like Richard Nixon in the last months of his presidency in 1974, Netanyahu is grasping at straws – trying to connect the dots of a conspiracy against him and besmirch the judicial and law enforcement bodies that form the foundations of any strong democracy. In his very undramatic TV declaration, Netanyahu was transparently using the trappings of the prime minister’s office to forward his personal interests. The next time his staff declares that he is going to make a dramatic announcement, much of the country, as well as TV news broadcasts, will think twice about taking time out of their busy lives to pay attention.
Netanyahu should let the judicial process take its course. Holding the country hostage to “dramatic announcements” that turn out to be nothing more than political statements is a misuse of the premiership and a violation of the public’s trust.
Editorial, JPO, 08.01.19
After his ‘dramatic statement,’ Netanyahu should be barred from live Israeli television
In a cynical and thuggish move that in criminal terms would be included in charges of misrepresentation and fraud, the suspect from Balfour Street seized the air time of the major news broadcasts (…) for his political needs. It was a disaster for truth, statesmanship and proper governance, which the Netanyahu era has trampled on. The “dramatic” announcement we were told to expect was the procedural argument of a serial suspect in three cases of alleged bribery. (…) The manipulation became clear a few minutes after the speech began. From that moment on, the live broadcast was superfluous. (…) From the incident (…) we learned that Netanyahu is determined to turn the election campaign into a referendum on his innocence, and what he calls the biased and unfair conduct of law enforcement. (…) He was speaking to those “millions of citizens” who will not accept the attorney general’s decision to indict (…) This is the campaign he will be conducting for the next 92 days. It will be conducted in the media, mainstream and otherwise. The man who whines about the media’s kangaroo court is taking his legal campaign to the media, which submits to him time after time. (…) The time has come to deny him the right to broadcast live. (…) Through his thick layer of makeup one could see the pallor. His eyes were dull, his body language conveyed worry. He knows that an indictment will be filed and that a conviction will send him to prison. The train toward a lenient plea bargain has already left the station. (…)
Yossi Verter, HAA, 08.01.1
In this strange election, Bibi may win but end up in prison
(…) Netanyahu is labouring under the dark cloud of an imminent announcement by his own Attorney General recommending he be indicted for fraud and bribery. The election is just the first phase of a three part drama that could conclude with either Netanyahu surpassing David Ben Gurion as Israel’s longest serving Prime Minister or going to prison. Phase one is the easy part, winning the election. Phase two involves forming a governing coalition and phase three could be a criminal trial. (…) Two major events will determine the course of this election. The first is the moment when the Attorney General actually makes his announcement. This is likely to be between February and early March. If he says Netanyahu should be indicted then expect Bibi to go into overdrive playing the victim and attacking the process. If he starts to look desperate and unhinged, it could decrease his popularity. The second moment will be when the parties submit their final lists on 21 February. By then we will know what political or security celebrities have joined the contest and crucially who has teamed up together. (…) the vast majority of people don’t begin to engage until four weeks before an election. Until then we shouldn’t take the polls or the pundits too seriously if they attempt to predict the final result
James Sorene, TOI, 10.01.19
The death rattle of Netanyahu’s premiership
(…) In his desperate attempt to get rid of the dark cloud of indictments hovering over his head, Netanyahu tarred and feathered his predecessors, reminding us of Ariel Sharon’s „Greek Island affair“ and Ehud Olmert’s money envelopes. How low, how ridiculous. I’m betting his new lawyers were none too pleased with the speech, and if it had been up to them, they would’ve prevented this performance altogether. (…) Mr. Netanyahu—you will have to deal with your legal woes, and your salvation won’t come from other suspects‘ past cases. (…)
Shimon Shiffer, YED, 13.01.19
Israels inländischer Geheimdienst verhörte im Zusammenhang mit dem Tod der Palästinenserin Aisha Rabi fünf jüdische minderjährige Siedler. Die Jungen sollen das Fahrzeug Rabis mit Steinen beworfen haben, lautet der Verdacht gegen sie. Die 47-jährige Mutter von acht Kindern war dabei tödlich am Kopf getroffen worden. Nach Aussagen des Anwalts einer der verhafteten Jungen, sei sein erst 15 Jahre alter Mandant von den Beamten an einen Stuhl gefesselt und über Stunden so fixiert gehalten worden. Die Mitarbeiter des Geheimdienstes hätten die Jugendlichen, die allesamt Schüler einer Jeschiwa in der Siedlung Rehavim, unweit von Nablus, sind, während des „harten Verhörs“ verbal und körperlich missbraucht. Angehörige und Freunde der Verdächtigen protestierten gegen diese „Folter“ und forderten ihre sofortige Entlassung aus der Untersuchungshaft.
Poisened fruit: Setter youth´unpatriotic, anti-zionist violence is evil
(…) the settler youths’ unpatriotic, anti-Zionist violence is evil. We cannot denounce terrorism committed against us but not by some of us. (…) When you have five students charged with murder, who also burned an Israeli flag while defacing another with a swastika and the words “Death to Zionists,” your school is on trial. You can collaborate, green-lighting Sabbath violations to coach the accused on resisting interrogation, acting as if they’re the victims. If so, your school is a toxic environment, a public menace, and violating Jewish law. (…) Meanwhile, in Amona, 25 kilometers away from this yeshiva bearing poisoned fruit, settler thugs injured 23 police officers and soldiers. Here, too, the moral and legal offenses transcend politics. (…) The violence, hypocrisy and selective indignation festering here reflect the ideological superviruses proliferating all over. Extremist stances resist facts and nuance just as superviruses resist drugs. Know-it-alls and fanatics pronounce on all kinds of things, frequently lacking any foundation or consistency. (…) In Israel, right-wing violence, not left-wing rhetoric, threatens Arabs, soldiers, police officers. Abroad, left-wing Israel-bashing – far more than right-wing rantings – spurs anti-Jewish violence among Islamists in Europe and Palestinian terrorists worldwide. All such bullying, bigotry and brutality is unacceptable. (…9
Gil Troy, JPO, 08.01.19
This is not how one questions Jews
(…) it’s not the murder that the country is so upset about, we’re used to those, but rather the way the suspects were questions. How can it be that detainees are not allowed to meet with their lawyer, not to mention minors? They may even have been shaken, bound “banana” style, or given a slap or two, Lord have mercy. (…) Why is the alarm sounded when Jews are interrogated by dark police methods, but no one says a word when Arabs are interrogated with the same methods? Is a stone thrown by a Jewish murderer more sacred than one thrown by an Arab murderer? This is more proof of the existence of apartheid. Let’s have equality. What can be done to Arabs during questioning can be done to Jews. A moral country cannot abide a double standard. The problem is that equality before a policeman, a detective and a judge can exist only when the law is applied equally. When the family of an Arab woman who is murdered can receive compensation from the state like the family of a Jewish woman who is murdered; when the robbing of land in Israel and the territories is considered an identical offense, and when the Palestinians can vote and be elected to the Knesset, then we can also cry out about the injustice in the difference between interrogations. (…) No person should be questioned under torture, especially if the crime has already been committed. (…) the nature of the interrogation is only the rotten fruit of decades in which they molded and cast the difference between victims. The murder of a Palestinian woman (…) raised no more than a brief sigh. Only a few cases in which Palestinians were killed were seriously investigated, while the murder of Jews, especially if they are settlers, is a national matter, one that is above the law. (…)
Zvi Bar’el, HAA, 09.01.19
Were the Shin Bet’s interrogation techniques justified?
(…) If suspects were to cooperate, the Shin Bet wouldn’t have to use aggressive interrogation methods in order to investigate attacks against Arabs. Suspects who have nothing to hide do not keep silent during interrogations. (…) Burning someone’s house or throwing stones at passenger cars (…) cannot be morally justified. These (…) underage suspects interrogated by the Shin Bet have grown up in an atmosphere where using the right to remain silent is considered a badge of honor rather than a mark of disgrace. The Shin Bet didn’t have to use „necessary investigation“ in the past. But now, the suspects enter the interrogation room fully prepared. (…) The rights of minors must be protected. We should oppose aggressive interrogation methods, but, at the same time, demand the cooperation of suspects. (…) those who expose criminals are not snitches but responsible people who save lives and protect the public. (…) Cooperation with Shin Bet interrogations, while denouncing anyone who uses violence and covers it up, will one way or the other preclude the need for “necessary investigation” techniques.
Yifat Erlich, YED, 09.01.19
Jewish terror undermines our right to our land
(…) A thousand terror attacks cannot undermine our firm hold on the land of Israel. (…) A single terrorist attack perpetrated by our people, however, undermines our right to live in our land. (…) Responding to Jewish terror with a forgiving attitude is unconscionable. There must be one consistent law in Israel, for Jews and Arabs alike. (…) there must be limits on the use of force by Israel’s security services and (…) we must warn against the excessive use of force during interrogations. But when Jewish youth are arrested on suspicion of killing, we — who are committed to the values of the Torah and to education — must stand shoulder to shoulder with the security forces and help them track down those who threaten to harm the very fabric of our lives. (…) We must maintain our internal fortitude and moral integrity lest we lose this privilege. Rabbis and educators must condemn hate crimes and violence against innocent people (…).
Benjamin Lau, TOI, 10.01.19
When the terrorist is one of our own
(…) the actions of every Jew reflect on all Jews. That for better or for worse, we are bound to each other. (…) We are supposed to be a light unto the nations. Not sexual predators. Not financial predators. And we are not supposed to be the sort of people that hurl stones at a moving car and murder innocent people. (…) What enables a person to hurl a rock toward the windshield of a car in which innocent people are riding? The same thing that enables a person to drive their car into a crowd, plunge their knife into strangers, shoot an innocent person. They have no empathy for the suffering they are about to inflict because they see their victims as prey, not as human beings like themselves. The pictures of the shattered windshield and its gaping hole are sickening. (…) One of our people, our youth, did this terrible thing. The Shin Bet arrested him after months of investigation. I hope their investigation yields the information they need to crack down on nationalist hate crimes — to apprehend not only the perpetrators but anyone who incites such hatred. Please don’t let it be a Jew that did this terrible thing… ever again.
Sally Abrams, TOI, 11.01.19
Trauer um Moshe Arens
Moshe Arens: Democrat, hawk, gentleman
Moshe Arens (…) was a rare breed – a member of the rightist Revisionist movement and a humanist, an ideologue and an idealist, a disciple of the greater Land of Israel who upheld liberal principles and defended individual rights and equality for Arabs. For his colleagues on the right, he was the last remnant of a group of rightists who believed in mutual respect and (…) honor – qualities that have been destroyed by his protégé, Benjamin Netanyahu. For his rivals on the left, Arens was an honored, worthy opponent. (…) his hawkish views were balanced by his basic character traits – courtesy, restraint and strong support for Israel’s democracy, about whose problems he wrote in Haaretz in recent years, stressing the state’s treatment of its Arab minority. Arens was considered a strange bird in Likud even before the party abandoned his values. He lacked the cynicism, the determined ambition and inflated ego that disappointed him in Netanyahu, but could have made him premier. He was a security hawk and a gentleman, and his death gives rise to nostalgia for his style and good manners, which characterized him to the end.
Editorial, HAA, 07.01.19
Eklat an der Uni
Tales from the Edge: The University and the Uniform
I came across (…) the university lecturer who refused to support, and berated, a student who appeared at her lecture in uniform. (…) we live our lives and grow our kids on the thin lines and tightropes strung between order and chaos. And the pacifist and the lecturer are here with us too. She said, the lecturer, that “there are people for whom civil society is as important as the army is to you”. She forgot about those soldiers and their uniforms, freezing their arses off blocking tunnels in the north where winter is coming, so that she can live a civil and civilian life undisturbed in the land of academia. (…) On the tightrope where while my politics aren’t your politics, and yours aren’t hers or his, we’re all clinging together. If the tightrope shakes there’s a long way to fall. So, we send out kids to the army. They defend policies and people they might not agree with and might not like, so that we can imagine and even taste the other Israel, the one in which we don’t dwell.
Rayne Wiselman, TOI, 07.01.19
Russian hackers are not the problem in the Israeli elections
(…) The real danger of misleading the public lies in entirely home-made, Israeli campaigns, concocted in the wild imaginations of a multitude of PR advisors. Was it the Russians who in 2015 released a video of Benjamin Netanyahu saying that “Arab voters are going to the polls in droves”? Did Russian bots flood the voting stations with notes saying “A Mizrachi votes for a Mizrachi”? And let’s not forget late president Shimon Peres’ “Arab mother,” invented a long time before the internet overran campaigns. Manipulation and demagogy in election processes are as old as elections themselves. Technology and cyber protection offer no real deterrence. We just need to use our brains and think independently, and approach any information being spread by one campaign or another as suspicious until proven otherwise. If it can indeed be proven otherwise. We all should think before we vote.
Sever Plocker, YED, 10.01.19
Umstrittene Geschäfte mit China
China´s basket of influence
When US National Security Adviser John Bolton was in Israel last week, he expressed concern to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about growing Chinese investments in Israeli infrastructure. Foremost of those concerns (…) was that Israel has an agreement with the Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG), in which the Chinese government has a majority stake, to privately manage the Haifa Port starting in 2021. (…) China is eyeing involvement in the Mount Carmel tunnels, the underground tunnels for an eventual Tel Aviv light rail, and other public transportation systems. This is an especially sensitive area, because it would mean China could have control over thousands of cameras around the country, as well as emergency services. These investments in infrastructure have an impact on military matters, businesses, food supply and other basic areas of life. (…) Israel should be wary of outsourcing so much control of its infrastructure to a sole foreign country, no matter which one it is, because of security concerns. With China potentially come other problems: It is a known hacker and it is hard to imagine that a government-controlled company won’t take advantage of surveillance opportunities elsewhere. (…) none of these investments are worth risking the invaluable intelligence-sharing and alliance between Israel and the US. The tension with Washington over Chinese involvement in Israeli projects should have been easy to predict, since this is not the first time this has happened. (…) While foreign investments are hugely important for Israel’s economy, there must be greater caution exercised when it comes to the industries in which China is permitted to influence and the extent of its funding. (…) Israel should not overly depend on any single country when it comes to its infrastructure. Putting all its eggs – ports, light rails, tunnels – in one Chinese basket could undermine the country’s ability to build its own infrastructure if that need arises in the future. (…)
Editorial, JPO, 12.01.19
HAA = Haaretz
YED = Yedioth Ahronoth / Ynetnews
JPO = Jerusalem Post
IHY = Israel HaYom
TOI = Times of Israel
GLO = Globes
Veröffentlicht im: Januar 2019
Dr. Paul Pasch,
Leiter der Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Israel