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March 4, 2015 / 13 Adar , 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Benjamin Netanyahu’

Putting Things Back Into Proportion

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

A State Comptroller audit report just came out attacking the prime minister for spending too much money on maintaining his residences and other official entertaining related expenses, and on how the money was spent.

David Shimron, the attorney of the Likud political party spoke at a press conference in Tel Aviv comparing the expenditures of the Prime Minister — who runs the country, and the President (Shimon Peres in the case of the years shown above) — who holds only a ceremonial role.

Those tall bars in orange belong to Shimon Peres, the short lines in blue belong to the Prime Minister.

Do you think they may have investigated the wrong person?

J Street’s Jeremy Ben-Ami Appoints Himself New American Jewish Rep

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

J Street is apparently indulging itself in a deliberate attempt to twist both the intent and words of Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s remarks on his upcoming trip to Washington next month.

The group’s director, Jeremy Ben-Ami, writes with a Left wing bent that has in the past positioned him as one who sometimes walks the thin line separating support for the State of Israel from that for the border-free, terrorist-riddled entity endorsed as “Palestine” by the United Nations General Assembly.

And in a display ad appropriately bearing turquoise blue and black (like a bruise on the landscape) on its logo, J Street runs with the slogan, “The political home for pro-Israel, pro-peace Americans.” A graver misnomer could not be.

“Yesterday, Prime Minister Netanyahu said that when he comes to Washington next month, he’ll be speaking “not just as the prime minister of Israel but as a representatiave of the entire Jewish people.” I don’t know about you, but he doesn’t speak for me. Help us let his Ambassador in Washington, Ron Dermer, know: as an American, as a Jew – Benjamin Netanyahu doesn’t speak for you.” the ad reads.

It then goes on to claim: “In the coming Israeli election, less than a quarter of Israelis will vote for him. More than half the Israeli public disapproves of his performance.

“And, here in the United States, where Jews overwhelmingly support diplomacy with Iran, the Prime Minister is deeply out of step with our community politically. “Make clear that no one person – even the Prime Minister of Israel – speaks for us all by signing our petition today.”

A link to J Street’s petition is embedded in the web campaign ad, which is also found in a “P.S.” that reminds, “Ambassador Dermer needs to hear from us.” and urges the reader to recruit “friends and family” to visit “DoesNotSpeakFor.me.”

Pretty slick. But the problem is, the statistics are really off. And Netanyahu never claimed to speak for every Jew. He said he is “representing” all Jews when he stands up to fight against the existential threat to Israel posed by anti-Semitism and Iranian nuclear technology development.

This writer wonders why Ben-Ami is picking a fight with Israel’s prime minister. In fact, it seems that over the past six weeks, everyone is picking a fight with Israel’s prime minister, and doing so with really cool, sophisticated slogans alongside. Sure looks like a well-funded fancy American-style ad campaign to me. American Jewish leaders organized to lobby Israel’s political leadership over Netanyahu’s upcoming speech to Congress?

American Jewish heavy hitters coming out with weighty, well-thought-out statements offering sage advice to the prime minister on various ways to back out of his commitment to the Speaker of the House?

Vice President Joe Biden and a panel of top Democratic lawmakers notifying media about their plans not to attend Netanyahu’s speech to Congress?

A boycott on meetings with Netanyahu when he arrives in Washington by the White House, the State Department and all the rest of the U.S. top leadership, casually brushed off by President Barack Obama as “protocol” since the Israeli elections follow two weeks later?

Leaks to international media about meetings at the Munich Security Conference between Israeli opposition leader, Labor party chairman Isaac Herzog and a host of top leaders – including U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and European Union foreign policy chief Federico Mogherini among them?

Not to mention frequent references by the U.S. president to his differences with Netanyahu on the “Iran issue” and most recently – yesterday, in fact – an outright plea not to “sour” a deal with Iran on its nuclear development activities under discussion between Tehran, the U.S. and world powers.

Ambassador Ron Dermer Explains Bibi’s Upcoming Visit to Washington

Monday, January 26th, 2015

Israel’s Ambassador to the U.S., Ron Dermer. explains to his audience why PM Netanyahu had a moral obligation to come before Congress and speak about the Iranian nuclear threat, just as he had a moral obligation to go to France and march in the rally.

H/T The Israel Project

Liberman’s Secret Plan to be Crowned Prime Minister

Friday, December 19th, 2014

Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) and Moshe Kachlon (Kulanu) have big plans in the works, according to a report by Zeev Kam of Makor Rishon.

Neither want to see Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister anymore, and Avigdor Liberman very much wants to be Israel’s next big boss.

And if this backroom deal works, it’s not unfeasible.

According to Makor Rishon, Liberman and Kachlon are planning a variation of Naftali Bennett’s alliance with Yair Lapid – where the two worked in concert to get what they wanted from Netanyahu, even if it meant both would have joined the opposition.

But Liberman’s aspirations are much bigger than Bennett’s were in the last election, when Bennett primarily wanted to ensure he wasn’t excluded from the coalition completely.

All the current poll results show that at least one of the two parties, either Kachlon’s or Liberman’s, must be in any coalition formation, whether Left or Right – and then the other can either be marginalized or excluded. That puts neither in a particularly strong negotiating position if they stand apart.

But Liberman’s solution, which Kachlon has reportedly given an initial positive nod to, goes far beyond Bennett and Lapid’s temporary alliance, and not only protects the both of them, but puts them in the catbird seat.

Immediately after elections are over, Liberman and Kachlon are talking about merging their parties. This way, before elections, they take advantage of the split vote, acquiring more votes separately than they would together.

And then after elections, they merge their parties, placing them among the top three.

And here’s the big part of the story — both plan to recommend to President Rivlin that the newly-merged party’s chief, Avigdor Liberman, be crowned Prime Minister.

The two already have a vote sharing agreement, where any extra votes that don’t translate into another Knesset seat for one party are transferred over to the other’s party, with the hope that it will give the recipient an extra boost.

Members of the Likud are aware of the purported plan, and as a result are shifting focus away from fighting the Herzog/Livni hydra, which Netanyahu now sees as a lesser threat, and refocusing it on Liberman, who he is worried could unseat him, or simply make his life and coalition unbearable. if not unsustainable.

Interestingly enough, Netanyahu’s shifted focus may be self-defeating.

Netanyahu did the same thing in the last election, painting a bull’s-eye on Naftali Bennett, which significantly helped Bennett in the polls.

Liberman’s party unequivocally denied the Makor Rishon report, stating they don’t have any agreements with any of the other parties – not for before and not for after the elections.

Kachlon’s people also denied the report saying it never happened, and it’s all spin.

What’s even more fascinating are the unintended consequences that might result.

A three-way split between Netanyahu, Herzog/Livni and Liberman/Kachlon won’t leave any of them with enough seats or partners to form a coalition.

If one of the three doesn’t compromise on who gets to be Prime Minister (after completely extorting the other), we could find ourselves going to elections again.

Bennett may also find himself as the tiebreaker/kingmaker.

Whether the report is accurate or not, one thing is clear – the Israeli electoral system is broken, and vulnerable to games like these, where tiny parties, through backroom deals and arm-twisting can force themselves into key positions of power, despite their narrow support base in the general population.

Livni and Herzog Negotiating Together to Defeat Netanyahu

Sunday, December 7th, 2014

Tzipi Livni (Hatnua) and Yitzchak Herzog (Labor) are reportedly talking about merging and running on a joint list.

The head of the party would be the one that is likely to win them the most votes to unseat Netanyahu.

Both Herzog and Livni repeatedly claim they are qualified to become Israel’s next Prime Minister.

Lapid is also reportedly making overtures with the both of them to form a left-wing bloc to run against Netanyahu.

Feiglin Would Bring 18 Mandates to the Likud

Sunday, December 7th, 2014

An internal Likud poll, run by Maager Mochot of 501 Jewish voters, tested out various Likud leadership alternatives, to see who might bring the most votes to the Likud party in the upcoming elections — other than Benjamin Netanyahu, according to a Haaretz report.

The poll found that if Moshe Feiglin were the head of the party, the Likud would win 18 seats, exactly what it has now. If Danny Danon were to run, the party would get 17 seats.

Current polls show the Likud under Netanyahu getting at least 22-24.

If Feiglin were in charge of the Likud, the poll showed that he would draw votes away from Bayit Yehudi (National-Religious), Yahudut HaTorah (Ultra-Orthodox) and Yisrael Beiteinu (Secular Right-wing), while traditional Likud voters would instead vote for other parties.

The poll’s results seems to imply that if Feiglin were to break away from the Likud and form his own party, it could be a formidable one (though it would come at the expense of other good parties).

Feiglin has made it clear he wouldn’t do that.

Just Like Normal Parents

Monday, December 1st, 2014

They may be the Prime Minister of Israel and his wife, but today they were just like every other normal Israeli parent sending their son (Avner) off to the army for the draft.


Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/photos/just-like-normal-parents/2014/12/01/

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