web analytics
August 3, 2015 / 18 Av, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Noam Shalit’s First Political Interview

Noam Shalit

Noam Shalit
Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Noam Shalit, father of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, has decided to enter politics. Shalit campaigned for his son’s release during Gilad’s five year captivity, leading to the controversial exchange of Gilad in return for 1,027 Palestinians, the highest price Israel has ever paid for one soldier. In January, less than three months after Gilad’s release, Noam stood at a press conference next to Labor’s new leader, Shelly Yachimovich, and announced his candidacy for a spot in the next elections as an MK on Labor’s list. Since that time, Shalit has been meeting voters and campaigning –  but has refused to conduct interviews. The first interview of his campaign aired this week on Channel 10. The 37-minute interview was enlightening, to say the least.

Shalit had trouble addressing his positions on key issues or on what ticket he will be running. He refused to discuss Iran or security in general. At one point he candidly confessed that he does not have an answer as to why he is worthy to be an MK. He said that he is still learning the issues so he does not yet have established positions nor a clear picture of what he wants to change. He did stress that he supports increasing the resources given to the North and South and in strengthening the education there.

Addressing the issue of religion and the state, he said he supports a full separation, but made a major gaffe when he praised Israel’s civil marriage system. The interviewer corrected Shalit, informing him that there was no civil marriage framework in Israel, and that people who want to marry civilly must fly to Cyprus. Shalit admitted he had a lot to learn.

In discussing Hamas, Shalit announced that he would talk with them if they agreed to it, and he would even shake the hands of Gilad’s kidnappers, also saying he would kidnap Israeli soldiers if he was a Palestinian. His advice for future captives’ parents was to fight politically, through the media,  and not wait for the government to take action.

Shalit sees no problem running against Netanyahu – the man who made the decision to free his son. He was very critical of Netanyahu and insisted that the PM was not solely responsible for the release of Gilad, and did not deserve all of the credit. He charged that Netanyahu only released his son because the polls showed that 70-80% of the public supported the deal. He criticized both former Prime Minister Olmert and Netanyahu for not having the courage to take a better deal earlier in the process. He stated that he would have implemented collective punishment in Gaza until Gilad was released. He did note that Olmert told him that he would not return Gilad, and that Netanyahu promised to return Gilad in their first meeting. But he charged that Netanyahu was part of the government that was responsible for Gilad’s captivity, which was another gaffe – since Gilad was captured in 2006 during Kadima Prime Minister Olmert’s term, when Likud was in the opposition. His criticism of Netanyahu was not limited to his son’s captivity, as he attacked Netanyahu’s handling of the Carmel fire as well.

He conceded that Yachimovich never visited the Shalit tent, nor active in pushing for Gilad’s release, but said that this did not matter. He rejected claims that he was an opportunist, saying if he was he would have run for a spot in Likud. He said that he thinks Yachimovich picked him because of his activities and not because of his last name, but agreed that if he ran in 10 years he would be irrelevant. He found it very important to stress he will not use Gilad to get votes.

He admitted that Gilad doesn’t want to write a book, but that he is pushing him to do it because he feels it is important to have Gilad’s story heard. In a sensitive moment, he confessed that the death of his twin brother in captivity was what moved him to launch a high-profile campaign for releasing Gilad. He said that he is not upset by former Shas Minister Ben Izri’s statement that Ben Izri had it worse in jail than Gilad had in captivity. He also stated that the rumors about him having a French lover did not bother him and he summarily dismissed them.

Towards the end of the interview there was a segment in which he spoke to Labor party voters at an event. They interviewed attendees after, and their feedback was less than positive.

Following Noam Shalit’s first public in-depth political interview, it’s understandable why he waited so long to have one. The Israeli public in general and the Labor party members in particular got a chance to see a different side of the man they previously knew only as ‘Gilad’s father’. The internal Labor election could be over a year away, and from Shalit’s perspective it would seem the later the better.

The full interview, courtesy of Israel Channel 10 TV

About the Author: Jeremy Saltan is a frequent guest on various radio programs and and a veteran political analyst. He has run political campaigns in English and Hebrew for Israeli municipality, party institution, primary and general elections. Jeremy’s opinion pieces have been published, quoted or credited by Voice of America, Daily Beast, France 24, Washington Post, BBC, Al Jazeera, Foreign Policy, Jerusalem Post, Times of Israel, Israel National News and the Jewish Press and more.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “Noam Shalit’s First Political Interview”

  1. This man has absolutely NO qualifications to run for any office.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Firefighters put out fire in firebombed car near Beit Hanina on August 3, 2105.
Jewish Woman Severely Burned, 2 More Injured in Yet Another Arab Firebombing Attack
Latest Indepth Stories
Graffiti at Duma home that was torched in Samara.

Some Israelis seem to have forgotten no one has yet tracked down the murderers of Ali Bawabsheh.

On-The-Bookshelf-logo

Aside from my own 485-page tome on the subject, Red Army, I think Jamie Glazov did an excellent job at framing things in United in Hate: The Left’s Romance with Tyranny and Terror.

Saltsman-073115

“Isn’t it enough that the whole world hates us? WHy do we have to hate each other?”

"Pistachios in our Time!"
US Secy of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif shake hands.

Who said Kerry won no concessions from Iran? He secured pistachios and Beluga caviar for America!

In 2015, Israel’s fertility rate (3+ births per woman) is higher than all Arab countries except 3

The New Israel Fund, as usual, condemns the State of Israel rather than condemning a horrible act.

I sought a Muslim group that claims to preach a peaceful and accepting posture of Islam, Ahmadiyya

While Orthodox men are encouraged to achieve and celebrated for it, Orthodox women too often are not

Jonathan remember, as long as you’re denied your right to come home to Israel you’re still in prison

Reports of a dead baby, a devastated family, and indications of a gloating attacker.

“The fear of being exposed publicly is the only thing that will stop people,” observed Seewald.

“Yesha” and Binyamin Regional Council leaders said the attack “is not the path of Jews in Judea and Samaria.”

The occasion? The rarely performed mitzvah of pidyon peter chamor: Redemption of a firstborn donkey.

American leftists have a pathological self-inflicted blindness to the dangers of political Islam

Hillary should THANK Trump; By dominating the news he’s overshadowed the implosion of her campaign

Hard to remember when Jewish youth were so hostile to their heritage as they are on campuses today.

More Articles from Jeremy Saltan
Benjamin Netanyahu

For Lapid to successfully challenge Netanyahu, he will need to find the right time for a strategic exit from the government.

The right of center parties continue to maintain their lead, albeit by a slightly smaller margin in eight polls released December 9-15.

Knesset Jeremy Weekly Average #8 (week of Nov 25-Dec 1) of 7 polls (Channel 10, Globes, Knesset Channel, Channel 2, Yisrael Hayom, Yediot Ahronont, Channel 1). Current Knesset seats in [brackets], Week 7 average in (brackets) 37.5 (38.0) [42] Likud Beytenu 19.2 (21.4) [08] Labor 11.7 (11.8) [10] Shas 9.8 (9.5) [05] Jewish Home-Tekuma 8.0 […]

The average of 2 polls published last week, Channel 2 and Jerusalem Post. The Post poll was conducted November 12-13 and the Channel 2 poll was published November 14.

This week’s average shows Likud Beitenu and Labor position similar to last week. Shas gains and takes the third position while Lapid’s Yesh Atid drops and falls into the fourth position. Hadash passes Meretz, while Kadima and Independence pick up gains. Am Shalem is also picking up steam. The right block gains ground this week with the help of Shas and Am Shalem’s gains.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/knesset/knesset-corner/noam-shalits-first-political-interview/2012/03/19/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: