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October 9, 2015 / 26 Tishri, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Avigdor Lieberman’

Three Opposition MKs Resign to Pursue More Exciting Careers

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

(JNi.media) On Wednesday, three Knesset members, one from Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party and two from Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid decided to abandon their political careers following their parties’ failure to join Prime Minister Netanyahu’s coalition government.

The most senior among the three is Rabbi Shai Piron, an Orthodox Jew who once was the dean of a yeshiva, and who served as Education Minister in the previous government, for a little over a year and a half. Piron traded his MK’s seat for a position in the Sderot school system, not far from the Gaza Strip border. Piron did tell reporters a few months ago that he is as ready to serve the nation from the opposition as he had done from the government, but, apparently, a few months of being kept away from an executive post cooled his enthusiasm.

The second, more surprising resignation, also hit the Lapid party, as MK Aliza Lavi, another Modern Orthodox Jew, departed Wednesday. Dr. Lavi, a renowned Orthodox feminist, used her position as chair of the Knesset committee to advance women’s status to push several laws to help women seeking a divorce, and to create shelters for battered women.

One of the Lapid seats will be filled by another Modern Orthodox Jew, Elazer Stern, who switched from Tzipi Livni’s party to Lapid’s, only to watch both factions ending up outside the government. Stern, who was raised in the National Religious movement, is not considered an avid advocate of the Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria.

MK Sharon Gal, who has been a vociferous promoter of the positions of his party boss, MK Lieberman, in attacking Arab MKs and Israel’s left. His biggest claim to fame during his short term in politics has been his membership in the committee to appoint judges, where he insisted that no non-Jewish candidate will ever receive his vote. Gal will host a personal show on Israel’s channel 20, which deals with Jewish issues.

Gal is the second dropout from Lieberman’s party, following Tsfat Mayor Ilan Shochat, who left as soon as he realized there won’t be an executive job for him.

Israeli media commentators have pointed to the fact that both parties, Lieberman’s and Lapid’s can only exist in conjunction with a membership in government, unlike Likud, Labor, and Meretz, which rely on substantial institutions and a historic following that sustain them during the dry seasons. It can be expected that, come next election, Lapid’s and Liberman’s electoral value will drop even further, as their access to patronage jobs and influence on special interest legislation have diminished considerably.

Agreement Reached Between Netanyahu and Arab MKs On Integration Plan For Israeli-Arabs

Tuesday, September 1st, 2015

By Jonathan Benedek

Prime Minister Netanyahu convened a meeting on Monday, August 31 aimed at finding solutions to help integrate and improve the Arab-Israeli sector, with Joint Arab List Chairman MK Ayman Udah, MK Dr. Ahmed Tibi, MK Jamal Zahalka MK Masud Ganaim and with Arab Local Councils Forum Chairman Mazan Ganaim.

An agreement was reached at the meeting that an additional NIS 900 million of budgetary supplements would be given to Arab local councils. A multi-year structural plan for the economic and societal integration of Arab Israelis was agreed upon as well that will include the implementation of a cooperation mechanism with the Union of Local Authorities and Arab sector local councils.

“I am the Prime Minister of all citizens of Israel,” Netanyahu said in a statement. “The assistance plan that we decided on today is a significant rectification and an additional step designed to integrate the Arab citizens of Israel into Israeli society as equals among equals.”

Among the NIS 900 million in budgetary supplements, there will be an increase this year of NIS 150 million for the current budget of Arab sector local councils. NIS 100 million will be added to their developmental budges in both 2017 and 2018.

Additionally, NIS 135 million will be provided for the development of informal education in Arab councils as well as community centers, nature centers and youth movements. There will also be a supplement of NIS 150 million for the advancement of personal security provided by police as well as for the reduction of crime.

Meanwhile, Opposition MK Avigdor Liberman strongly criticized Netanyahu for making the agreement with the Arab Members of Knesset. “Netanyahu’s decision to give Ayman Odeh and his anti-Zionist partners an accomplishment in the form of an announcement after a meeting with them to transfer 900 million shekels to the Arab municipalities, is a shot in the foot of the Zionist state,” argued Liberman.

“Rather than strengthening the moderate elements among Israeli Arabs, the prime minister reinforces the most extreme who are a fifth column in Israel’s Knesset.”

Donald Trump Running to Be ‘Greatest President God Ever Created’ [video]

Tuesday, June 16th, 2015

Donald Trump, the billionaire real estate developer, casino owner, entertainment mogul, TV personality and father of a woman who converted to Judaism and says she observes Shabbat, tossed hit hat into the huge ring of Republican candidates for president Tuesday.

He probably holds the record for being the most frequent “almost candidate,” having hinted several times in the past he would run for president.

This time it is for real. He said in his announcement in a 45-minute speech in New York:

I am officially running for president of the United States, and we are going to make our country great again. Sadly the American dream is dead. But if I get elected president, I will bring it back bigger and better and stronger than ever before.

He boasted his net worth at $8.7 billion, twice the amount estimated by most sources, and said:

I’m really rich. I’m not doing that to brag. I’m doing that to say that’s the kind of thinking our country needs. We need that thinking. We have the opposite thinking. We have losers…. The greatest social program is a job.

Trump went on to state, without batting an eyelash:

I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.” I’ve watched the politicians, I’ve dealt with them all my life. They will never make America great again. They don’t even have a chance.

Polls show that Trump has a chance to win the Republican nomination, but he still is a long shot. He loves Israel, but it is questionable if American Jews love him. He has made statements disparaging blacks and Hispanics, so he can forget about most of them for support.

What might really be interesting is if he does not win the Republican nomination but runs as an Independent. third-party candidate. That would make for the most interesting presidential election since former Alabama governor and segregationist George Wallace’s four pitches for the presidency, earning him the description of America’s “most influential loser.”

Trump, like Wallace, is a gadfly and shoots from the hip, something like an American version of Israel’s Avigdor Lieberman before he got too smart for his own good. Trump has sworn up and down that President Barack Obama did not fulfill a basic qualification for the presidency by being born in the United States. Trump’s constant jabs at Obama, along with those of other “birthers,” finally forced the president to produce a birth certificate. Of course, the hard-core birthers said it was a fake.

Trump’s name is plastered on a variety of industries, from real estate to wrestling, media, golf course, a chartering company, ice cream parlor, a line of men’s wear, vodka, books, steaks and a golf course.

Being a maverick gives him the image of sticking by his word. When he says he loves Israel, he puts his money where his mouth is. Trump has a huge real estate project in Netanya, and his daughter Ivanka, who converted to Judaism, looks favorably on Israel for real estate investment.

Her husband is from an Orthodox Jewish family, and she has taken her conversion seriously, adding “Yael” to her name and saying that “we’re pretty observant, more than some, less than others.”

If “the Donald” is elected president, the United States will have its first Jewish daughter in the White House.

Her father hates President Obama with a passion and has said that he is Israel’s greatest enemy. Trump also is a fan of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

Below are three videos. The first one includes parts of Trump’s speech today, the second one is from 2013, when Trump endorse Netanyahu for Prime Minister. and third is of Ivanka’s visit to Jerusalem in 2008.

MK David Rotem, 66, Passes Away

Monday, June 8th, 2015

Yisrael Beytenu Knesset member David Rotem passed away at his home in Efrat on Monday afternoon, Efrat city council chairman Oded Revivi tweeted in a sorrowful post of Twitter.

“May his memory be blessed!” Revivi wrote.

Rotem’s friend and long-time political colleague, Yisrael Beytenu party chairman Avigdor Liberman, said in a statement, “David Rotem was not only a friend in politics but also a personal friend. A man of the Land of Israel who knew how to fight for his country and for his personal views. A man who was willing to stand his ground and was not cowed in facing the struggles that had to be faced to promote those ideals he believed in.

“A chairperson of Constitution, Law and Justice Committee, he contributed greatly to the State of Israel, the Knesset and Yisrael Beytenu,” Liberman continued.

“His death is a great loss and a great sorrow to all of his friends. My condolences to his family. May his memory be blessed.”

Liberman Apologizes for Using ‘Autistic’ as an Insult to Describe Netanyahu

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

The JewishPress.com reported earlier today that former Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman was irate that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was about to meet with Ayman Odeh, the head of the Israeli Arab Joint List of parties.

Liberman, speaking in an interview on state-run Voice of Israel radio, accused Netanyahu of flip-flopping on the issue of support for a two-state solution. That outrage may be justified as Liberman bills himself as adamantly nationalist. However, the language the former foreign minister used was deeply insensitive, and he has since been called on it by members of Israel’s disability rights movement.

The specific phrase used by Liberman which called down demands for an apology, was the use of the term “autistic” to describe behavior Liberman meant to suggest was not smart.

What Liberman said about Netanyahu was: “Anyone who thinks going back to the 1967 lines will solve the conflict is autistic.”

Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation, a non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening the relationship between Israelis and American Jews and to the inclusion of people with disabilities in the broader society, released this response:

I call on Member of Knesset Avigdor Lieberman to apologize for using the term ‘autistic’ as an insult directed at Prime Minister Netanyahu.  Millions of people around the world and thousands of people in Israel are autistic.  By using the word ‘autistic’ as an insult, MK Lieberman has deeply hurt the autism community.  The term for a disability should never be used in a crude and derogatory manner.

If Mr. Lieberman had an autistic child, how would he like it if his child heard a highly visible public figure like himself use autism as cudgel against an adversary?

After the Ruderman Family Foundation issued its statement, it was learned that Liberman reportedly stated: “Today I said in a radio interview that ‘anyone who thinks going back to the ’67 borders would solve the dispute has autism.’ Of course I didn’t mean in any way to offend autistic people, but wanted to illustrate the unwillingness of some people to accept certain realities about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and I apologize if anyone was hurt.”

The Ruderman Family Foundation and many others are gratified that Liberman realized he had to apologize for his insensitive statement.

As Jay Ruderman pointed out, “it is highly inappropriate to use a disability in a derogatory manner.”

Liberman Warns Netanyahu Not to Meet Arab Party Head

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

Former Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman is up in arms because Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has scheduled talks with Ayman Odeh, head of the Israeli Arab Joint List of parties.

Liberman, head of the Yisrael Beytenu party, himself pulled out of Netanyahu’s coalition, deliberately leaving Netanyahu the slimmest of margins with which to form a government.

Speaking in an interview on state-run Voice of Israel radio, Liberman accused Netanyahu of flip-flopping on the issue of support for a two-state solution. “Anyone who thinks going back to the 1967 lines will solve the conflict is autistic,” Liberman told the interviewer.

He complained that remarks on the issue by Netanyahu following his meeting on Wednesday with European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini reflected a change of heart from the image he portrayed during his campaign.

For Netanyahu to schedule a meeting with Ayman Odeh, the head of the united Arab parties, simply added more fuel to the fire.

“This man represents a list of terror supporters in the Israeli parliament, and the prime minister of Israel, who heads a government which defines itself as nationalist, is meeting with him,” Liberman complained in a statement.

“Netanyahu’s meeting with Odeh, one of the sharpest opponents of Israel being the state of the Jewish people, gives legitimacy to forces working to destroy Israel from within and gives a stamp of approval to the fifth column working inside the Israeli parliament,” he added.

Liberman, who defines himself as nationalistic, swore he would not remain in another Netanyahu government.

Likud MK Silvan Shalom to Lead Israeli Negotiating Team

Monday, May 18th, 2015

Likud Interior Minister Silvan Shalom has been appointed to become Israel’s new lead negotiator in any talks with the Palestinian Authority, as well as in strategic dialogue with the United States.

Palestinian Authority officials made it clear they were not happy with the appointment.

“He does not believe in a Palestinian state,” a Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) source told the AFP news agency on condition of anonymity. “He’s against a two-state solution. It’s not an issue of names. It’s an issue of policy.”

Leftist politician Tzipi Livni, head of the Hatnua party and a justice minister in the prior government was the last minister to head Israel’s negotiating team.

Shalom said Monday that he is “ready to review every subject in every area from the most weighty issues of the United Nations, to smaller matters such as managing joint day-to-day life.”

Having served as foreign minister from 2003 to 2006 (during the second intifada and the 2005 Disengagement from Gaza), Shalom is no novice to the role. He will also be responsible for strategic talks with officials from the United States as well, according to a report broadcast on Galei Tzahal Army Radio.

Likud members are expected to raise some opposition as well, because party member and Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely was expected to be given the appointment.

Hotovely evaded reporters’ questions on Monday, saying only that until she is told otherwise, she will “work diligently to fulfill [her] duties faithfully in every sector in which Israel must act.”

Although it is usually the foreign minister who manages the issue of negotiations, at present Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is holding that post. Yisrael Beytenu party chairman Avigdor Liberman, the previous minister of foreign affairs, quit the coalition and withdrew his party as well.

Shalom’s new role is also likely to bring him in to security cabinet discussions on strategic issues such as how to deal with the Iranian nuclear issue vis a vis any dialogue with the United States.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/likud-mk-silvan-shalom-to-lead-israeli-negotiating-team/2015/05/18/

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