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September 22, 2014 / 27 Elul, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Danny Danon’

Danon Wins Internal Likud Election, Next Victory on the Way

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

On Tuesday, Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon overwhelmingly won the elections for chairman of the Likud party convention. The position is mostly symbolic, but indicates strong support within the party.

Prime Minister originally planned to directly challenge Danon for the position, but withdrew his candidacy when he saw that Danon was likely to win.

On Sunday, elections will be held for the head of the Likud Central Committee, where Danon is also the leading candidate. His opponents are Michael Fuah, a Moshe Feiglin ally, and Ness Ziona mayor Yossi Shavo.

Danon has been an outspoken advocate for Judea and Samaria, and opposing the two-state solution. Whereas Prime Minister Netanyahu has been calling for negotiations with the Palestinians and a demilitarized Palestinian state.

Danon says he wants to reanimate, revitalize and restore the Likud’s ideology to the party.

Simultaneously, he reassured Prime Minister Netanyahu that he doesn’t plan to undermine Netanyahu, as that the Likud is loyal to its leaders. Danon said the Left have had a dozen different leaders since 1948, while the Likud has only had four.

But, as chair of the Likud Central Committee, Danon will have the power to fight and perhaps block Netanyahu’s diplomatic initiatives which he and most Likud party members disagree with.

Following Lapid-Bennett Deal, Likud Facing Civil War

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

At 12:55 PM Wednesday, the prime minister’s office leaked a message so subversive and so clever, it insisted the editor of the 1 PM news edition at Kol Israel attribute it to anonymous “Likud circles.” That’s one notch below “senior Likud officials” and well below “circles close to the prime minister,” which is, basically, the prime minister. I heard it in my car, driving up to Jerusalem, but didn’t pay attention to the special wording. Maariv’s Shalom Yerushalmi paid attention, and realized the PM people were using the Atomic option.

The Likud circles, according to the leak, threatened that if there won’t be a breakthrough in the coalition negotiations within hours, the Likud would initiate an accelerated negotiations with the Haredi parties for a right-leaning new government without Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party.

In addition, a higher level source inside the PM’s circles, told Haaretz that Netanyahu believes the reason Lapid has upped the ante of his demands was his buyer’s remorse. Somehow he ended up agreeing to the Finance portfolio, and now, seeing the mess he would have to deal with, he wants to back out, so he’s making it impossible to come to an agreement.

That’s not such an outlandish surmise. Lapid, ever the glitzy charmer, had had his heart set on the Foreign Minister’s job. And he would have made a great FM, kissing hands and raising champagne glasses and all the other fun stuff FMs get to do in Paris, London, Rome, DC, and, of course, Moscow.

Except Avigdor Liberman, Netanyahu’s faction partner, already had dibs on the Foreign Ministry. Liberman couldn’t serve in the government for now, not until the silly corruption suit against him is resolved in court. But Bibi had promised Ivet to hold on to the seat for him, and breaking that promise would have been a deal killer all around.

So Lapid backed off and agreed to take another of the top three portfolios—Finance.

Customarily, the Foreign, Defense and Finance ministries belong to the party of the Prime Minister. It is a rare occurrence, usually driven by a national crisis (such as when Moshe Dayan was invited, from the opposition benches, to become Defense Minister in 1967). So, giving Lapid this high honor was a big thing.

But the job of Finance Minister is not going to make Lapid many friends this time around. No hand kissing and champagne here for the teen idol. The Netanyahu government has accrued a 40 billion shekel (just under $11 billion) deficit which has to be cut from the next budget. Unlike the U.S. government, which can run deficits in the trillion, Israeli governments are prohibited by law from running a deficit that’s higher than 3 percent of the budget. The new deficit constitutes 5.10 percent, and so some cutting has to take place.

And lover boy Yair Lapid will have the dubious honor of deciding what gets cut:

Should it be the new raises to hospital nurses? Low-cost education? Environmental improvements? Social Security benefit increases for the elderly? Highway construction? Train service?

There’s no two ways about it – in the end, someone is going to hate Yair Lapid for whatever cut he’ll make. And since he’s an avowed free market and anti-tax type, he won’t be able to fix things by taking more money from business (although Teva, one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical conglomerate, received close to a billion dollars in tax break from the outgoing Finance Minister – that should pay for a few hot lunches).

The leak was a lie, of course, Lapid seems just as eager as before to embrace the, arguably, second most important job in government. But the first anonymous threat, about a coalition with Shas, UTJ and Bennett – especially when, reportedly, backed by Bennett himself, who assured Lapid he intended to stay in government, with or without him – that convinced Lapid it was time to call the game and put the cards on the table.

There’s an old Jewish joke about a shadchan who tries to convince a yeshiva bocher to marry Princess Margaret. He answers every one of the poor man’s questions – she would make a great wife, she has money, she will convert for the right man – until the yeshiva bocher breaks down and agrees to the deal. At which point the shadchan sighs deeply and says: Now starts the hard part.

Political Stars MK Danny Danon & Jeremy Gimpel – Likud? Jewish Home?

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

(((CLICK BELOW TO HEAR AUDIO)))

Yishai is joined by MK Danny Danon of the Likud and Rabbi Jeremy Gimpel of the Bayit Yehudi parties. First, Yishai interviews MK Danon and the kick off discussing Danon’s thoughts on the leadership of Prime Minister of Benjamin Netanyahu and how he needs to ensure that a two-state solution does not happen. Danon moves on to give his alternate view of the concept of settlement and also talk about Danon’s harsh criticism of MK Haneen Zoabi for choosing to be a crewmember of an anti-Israeli flotilla. They end by discussing the changing relationship between Israel and the United States.

Following the interview with MK Danon, Yishai presents a recent interview with Knesset hopeful Rabbi Jeremy Gimpel of the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party. Gimpel discusses how his party is not only considered by many to be the up and coming party within the Knesset, especially among younger voters but also is the youngest party in regards to the age of the members running for office. Yishai and Gimpel end by talking about the need for a true Zionist party in Israel and why Bayit Yehudi is exactly that.

Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
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Likud’s Pro-Settlements Shooting Star Hints He Wants Housing Ministry

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

Likud Member of Knesset Danny Danon said on saturday night that in the next government, the ministry of housing and construction, which oversees and provides assistance for new construction, including in Judea and Samaria should be held by a Likud member.

To that end, voters should give the Likud as many mandates as possible, as that will make it easier for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to keep the portfolio within the party. It is currently held by Ariel Attias of the Shas party.

Danon’s comments were made at the Member of Knesset’s victory-Chanukah party in Rishon Letzion, which was attended by hundreds of Likud members and activists who supported Danon in recent Likud primaries.

Surprising many, Danon, who is considered one of the most nationalist members of the Likud, ranked fifth in the primaries among Likud candidates for the Knesset. After the merger of the Likud and Yisrael Beitenu’s list of candidate for the Knesset, Danon is number nine.

Normally, Knesset Members who rank so high in a party are considered for positions in the cabinet if the party forms or is part of the government.

Danon could be indicating what ministry he would prefer to hold in the next government.

However, despite his success in the recent primaries, Danon, has often clashed with Netanyahu, making it less likely that Netanyahu will offer him a ministry.

In addition, there has been speculation that Netanyahu will want to provide ministerial positions to Likud members who are part of the current government, but did not rank high in the Likud primaries. These include Minister of the Treasury Yuval Steinitz as well as several members who ranked so low in the Likud primaries they are not likely to appear in the next Knesset at all, Benny Begin, Michael Eitan and Dan Meridor.

Current Likud ministers, Minister of Education Gideon Sa’ar, Minister of Environmental Protection Gilad Erdan, Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz, Minister for the Development of the Galilee and the Negev Silvan Shalom, Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya’alon, all ranked in the top ten in the Likud’s primaries and are all expected to receive portfolios in the next government.

Likud Primaries: How to Vote?

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Likud Primaries are coming soon, and it’s time to think about who should be on the Likud’s MK list for the upcoming national elections.

Last night I reviewed the list of candidates and started making notes to myself of potential people to get my vote. The process works as follows: You must vote for 12 candidates on the list as your primary candidates, and then 1 additional person as your regional candidate.

So far, the only candidates that I am 100% certain about are from the list from Mattot Arim. Their current update is as follows (I am providing only the Likud-related section of the report. You can read their full report here on their website (look for the English posts on the right hand side):

Accountability 4: Vote for Those who Get Things Done – Mattot Arim’s Parliamentary Report 4 

We invite you to vote for the high-scorers, so that this time, YOUR Knesset and YOUR Government, will get DONE what YOU want!  Here is Parliamentary Report 4 by Mattot Arim:  http://heb.mattotarim.org/images/docs/yamin.pdf  It discloses what the MKs and ministers got done in the first half of year 2011.

High scoring MKs and ministers, in the attached report, are those who have been standing strong against Oslo, Disengagement, Palestinian State  and other pro-Arab anti-Israel paradigms.

There are 4 MKs and one minister which consistently do well in all reports - Danny Danon, Zev Elkin, Zipi Hotovely and Yariv Levin. Top-ranking minister: Yuli Edelstein. Make sure these 5 are on your list!! A new but particularly strong candidate is Moshe Feiglin.

Residents of the Ashdod-Rehovot area (shfela area)  – please take note!! It is important for you to vote for Meir Malka. He is running against a very powerful proponent of disengagement. If you vote for Meir Malka who has the same kind of national viewpoint as you do, you are sparing the Knesset his rival who could be very dangerous.  Please forward this paragraph about the important candidacy of Shfela representative Meir Malka, to EVERYONE you know in the following cities: Ashdod, Rishon leZion, Rehovot, Modiin, Lod, Gedera, Yavneh, Nes Ziona, Ramleh, Kiryat Ekron, Beer Yakov, Bet Dagan, Bnei Ayish, Gan Yavne, Mazkeret Batya, Macabim-Reut. Only residents of those cities are eligible to vote for Meir Malka.<

Reminder: if you want to help with Mattot Arim’s important national accountability project, learn more: http://mattotarim1.blogspot.co.il/2012/10/we-need-your-help-right-now-to-generate.html. And feel free to contact us at mattot.arim@gmail.com.

More updates to come…

PS: Just make sure NOT to vote for Zachi HaNegbi!

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The Eagles Have Landed

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Israeli summer is in full glory – ice-cold watermelon, late-afternoon cookouts, summer camp, and the arrival of another planeload of smiling, energized immigrants from North America, courtesy of Nefesh b’Nefesh, the Jewish Agency, the Ministry of Absorption, and the Jewish National Fund.

The third flight since June 18 brought 229 Jews home on the “wings of eagles” from New York’s JFK airport.

Two young olot actually fulfilled the custom of kissing the hallowed ground, in this case the Ben Gurion tarmac.

Two young olot actually fulfilled the custom of kissing the hallowed ground, in this case the Ben Gurion tarmac.

The new Israelis – young and old, singles and large families – were greeted with tears and warm embraces from family members, as well as songs and a celebratory, 800-people welcoming ceremony organized by Nefesh b’Nefesh and its partners.

There was an 800-people welcoming ceremony on hand.

There was an 800-people welcoming ceremony on hand.

Among the dignitaries present to address the honored immigrants was Committee for Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Affairs Chairman MK Danny Danon.

“I’m honored, and we are all excited to come and greet you today because for you it’s a special moment, but also for the people of Israel,” Danon told the attendees.  Offering respect to recently deceased Prime Minister Yitzchak Shamir, Danon told the crowd a story about a question he once asked the respected Israeli leader.

“After I introduced him in an event in Florida many years ago, I was younger, with more hair…  I asked Shamir ‘what was your great achievement? Leading the underground? Being in the Mossad? Being the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the prime minister? What was your great achievement , Mr. Shamir?  He told me ‘Listen, young guy. The great thing is to bring olim to eretz yisrael [the Land of Israel]’, that’s what he believed, and that is what we are doing here today.”

However, Danon offered a stark contrast between the number of immigrants choosing Israel as their home, and the number of Africans doing the same.  “Unfortunately, there are more African infiltrators who come from Africa to Israel than olim who come to Israel every year.  So the government must do more,” Danon said.

“I want to tell you, the people who made the decision – for you, it was a personal decision.  You chose to bring your family, you chose to come to live in Israel, you made the right decision.  The best place to bring up, to educate Jewish families is here in Israel, and I know that you come from a wonderful community, but you will not regret it.”

In the 10 years since Nefesh b’Nefesh’s inception, the group has assisted 30,000 Americans, Canadians, and British Jews in making aliyah.  Included in that number are 2,500 new IDF soldiers, 378 physicians and psychologists, 650 scientists and medical professionals, and 2,300 new residents in Judea and Samaria. The good times have kept on rolling after the planes landed, with  immigrants celebrating 4,000 births, and 640 marriages.

Yael Katzman, Director of Communications for Nefesh b’Nefesh, said that while the organization continues to receive applications from Jews of all backgrounds and personal situations, it has noticed an increase in the number of singles and young professionals choosing to make Israel home.  Nefesh b’Nefesh has responded by specializing events and information for the group.

“We’re doing all sorts of special programming for them,” Katzman said.  “Next month we have a boat ride we’re organizing in the NY area so they can get together and hear about Israel and aliyah and network with each other.”  Approximately 1,400 young professionals are expected to touch down in 2012.

One of those young professionals is Tag Adler, son of Yeshiva University Dean Norman Adler, who returned to Israel after several years in Los Angeles while his wife pursued her PhD, and left the illustrious Google Corporation to make Israel home.

“The market here is incredible for hi-tech in general – this is ‘startup nation’, so I knew that if I left Google, I could come here and find another job and luckily I was able to do that,” Adler said. “And there’s so much talent here and so much opportunity, that people should not be intimidated to come here to get a better job. In fact, I got a really good job, even a step up from what I was doing with someone else, so the dream can come true in Israel.  You can have your cake and eat it too here in Israel.”

According to Katzman, the majority of American immigrants harken from New York and New Jersey.  Among the concerns Nefesh b’Nefesh helps them address are separation from family members staying behind in the Diaspora, language barriers, and employment.

“Nefesh b’Nefesh was created on the foundation of helping people overcome the obstacles, whether it’s employment or integration or bureaucratic processing, but these are all things Nefesh b’Nefesh has tried to help with and it’s the secret to our success in the last decade,” Katzman said.

Despite criticism that Nefesh b’Nefesh has not garnered a huge surge in the number of Jews hearing the call to return to the homeland, Katzman noted that Nefesh b’Nefesh applications continue to pour in, and that the numbers are only rising.  “We’re expecting close to 5,000 olim this year,” Katzman said.  “We have never experienced a decrease in the number of olim – we’ve only gone up.”

Overwhelmingly, said Katzman, Nefesh b’Nefesh olim are Jews who connect deeply to their Jewishness.

“The people who are making aliyah are people who are affiliated or people who feel a strong sense of Jewish identity, they are committed,” said Katzman.

“Your family’s going to have to respect your decision that you have to live your dream, and they’re going to have to really love you and set you free to do that,” Adler said.  “But ultimately you’re going to have to make that choice to live that dream.”

 

Danny Danon: Remembering Shamir – The Integrity of ‘No’

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

The people of Israel lost a true leader with the passing of Yitzhak Shamir. Before assuming the reins as our seventh prime minister, Shamir dutifully served his people and his country first as head of the underground Lehi, then in the Mossad where he was responsible for tracking down and eliminating some of our worst enemies including Nazi war criminals who had fled to Egypt, and finally in the political arena where he served as a Member and then Speaker of Knesset, Foreign Minister and finally Prime Minister after the resignation of his mentor Menachem Begin.

Upon the death of a loved one, we often take the time to look through the memory book of their life and search for the lessons that their legacy can teach us. In the case of Yitzhak Shamir, a multi-volume set of thick bound tomes might be more appropriate a metaphor. These books are filled with the earth of the whole land of Israel, and immersed in values and an understanding of our unique place in history. His spirit and his values are an inspiration to all of those who love this land, and especially to the members of his beloved Likud movement that strive to stay true to Shamir’s teachings.

You do not negotiate on your core ideology. This is what guided Shamir in his steadfast defense of the rights of the Jewish people to their historic homeland. In the years that he guided Israel’s foreign policy, he would not compromise on this basic tenet. In 1992, under intense pressure from the American administration, Shamir stood fast and made clear to the world that money cannot buy and replace values. He bravely rejected the US demand that he stop building in Judea and Samaria in return for loan guarantees. This money was very much needed to absorb our brothers who were then coming home from the former Soviet Union, but Shamir knew such an act on his behalf would create a slippery slope that would set a terrible precedent for the future leaders of Israel. Such a move on his behalf would have endangered his beloved settlement enterprise which he knew was invaluable for the future well-being of the State.

Shamir’s decisions and policies were not always popular or politically correct. There was no end of criticism both in Israel and form the international community. In fact, there were times when his refusal to abandon his core values probably cost him at the ballot box, such as when he lost to Yitzhak Rabin in the 1992 elections. Nevertheless, over time, his steadfastness disproved today’s assumption that you must be guided daily by opinion polls to obtain power, and then govern. Without ever abandoning his beliefs, Shamir was able to not only reach the highest office in the land, but he also ended up serving in office longer than any other prime minister since David Ben Gurion. Moreover, because of his intellectual honesty and core decency, since leaving office Shamir is admired by all Israelis – whatever their political persuasion – for the great leader that he was.

To better convey Shamir’s unique foresight and leadership capabilities, I must share a short story. In the early 1990s, while serving as a Betar emissary in the United States, I invited one of my childhood heroes to visit my host community. Yitzhak graciously agreed to come and speak at an event I had organized promoting Israel and aliyah. When he was asked for his opinion about the demographic threat that is so often raised, Shamir answered with full confidence that we must remain steadfast and work tirelessly to bring millions of Soviet Jews home to Israel. At that time, such a prediction seemed completely unrealistic and even a tad naïve. Nevertheless, Shamir’s analysis proved with time to be completely accurate and proved how important it is for a leader to remain true to his values. By believing and planning, one million Russians ultimately came to live in Israel, changing our core demographic reality forever.

That night, after he had finished addressing the group, I had the honor of spending an evening with the former Prime Minister. I was enthralled with his stories and life lessons, especially with his core conviction that a leader must truly believe in and be ready to defend his policies. If a leader does so, he told me, there is no need to worry about the criticism that will inevitably follow any brave decision.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/danny-danon-remembering-shamir-the-integrity-of-no/2012/07/03/

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