web analytics
August 28, 2014 / 2 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘elections’

It’s Official: Egyptian Military Strongman to Run for President

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

The Egyptian general who deposed Muslim Brotherhood-backed former President Mohammed Morsi in July 2013, announced late Wednesday he will run for president. Abdul Fatah el-Sisi, who holds the rank of Field Marshal as head of the country’s armed forces, is also the Defense Minister in Egypt’s current transitional government.

“These recent years of our nation’s history have conclusively shown that no one can become president of Egypt against the will of the people or short of their support,” Sisi said in his speech on national television. “Never can anyone force Egyptians to vote for a president they do not want. Therefore I am here before you humbly stating my intention to run for the presidency of the Arab Republic of Egypt . . . Only your support will grant me this great honor.”

Following el-Sisi’s announcement, Interim President Adly Mansour issued a statement saying he had promoted Egyptian military chief of staff Lt. Gen. Sedki Sobhi to the rank of first lieutenant general.

According to the state-run Al Ahram newspaper, el-Sisi met earlier with military officials to tell them he was stepping down. The meeting was also expected to help determine who would succeed the Egyptian strongman to the post. Today (Thursday) he is expected to submit his official resignation to President Mansour at a Cabinet meeting.

The radical Islamist opposition movement in Egypt hates el-Sisi and continue to riot against the transitional government that succeeded Mohammed Morsi. They also perceive el-Sisi to be instrumental in this week’s Supreme Court decision to sentence 529 Muslim Brotherhood supporters to death. Ongoing street violence and bloody clashes with police by Islamist opposition forces have led to at least one death this week, according to Al Ahram, quoting figures from Egypt’s health ministry, with eight others injured in the riots.

El-Sisi has also been largely responsible for Egypt’s recent cooperation with Israel in clearing and destroying the terrorist smuggling tunnels that have honeycombed the area under the borders between Egypt, Gaza and Israel, a move that has earned the military leader the enmity of terrorists in Sinai and Hamas leaders in Gaza.

The general is widely supported by moderates on both sides of the border who would like to see the country get back to a “normal life” and by those in Egypt who are heartily sick of the violence and lack of tourism in a nation that once played host to regular visits from wealthy international clientele.

Knesset Passes Law that Drives Extremists to the Political Graveyard

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

The Knesset passed into law on Tuesday a measure that will restrict representation in the legislature to parties that win at least 3.25 percent of the total vote, or approximately four seats.

If elections were held today and results were similar to recent polls, Kadima, headed by Shaul Mofaz, would be non-existent, and Tzipi Livni’s Tnuah party would either join it in the political graveyard or at best be standing at the edge of the cemetery.

The Arab parties will be forced to unite or disappear, and the likes of Baruch Marzel can kiss their Knesset futures goodbye. The only thing that could save Marzel, his cohorts Itamar Ben-Gvir and former Knesset Member Aryeh Eldad, would be another mass expulsion of Jews, God forbid.

The law passed by a 67-0 unanimous vote, which was astonishing on two counts. First, no one in the coalition voted against it, for the simple reason there are two other laws slated for a vote this week, and the coalition parties wisely agreed to join forces and support them all rather than risk a nasty fight on the floor and a strikeout.

The other astonishing event, even for Israel’s three-ring circus Knesset, is that the Opposition parties boycotted the vote even though the Opposition leader once supported the same legislation.

Opposition leader Yitzchak “Bogie” Herzog once supported the same proposal, but he complained on Tuesday that the coalition government is steamrolling the democratic process by staging three votes on major bills in one week, restricting a proper debate.

Labor should be renamed the Loser party, or perhaps the Crybabies party.

The other two votes this week are on the universal draft, which is aimed at the Haredim while leaving Arabs off the hook, and a bill to make part of the Basic Law a provision that any surrender of land under Israeli sovereignty would require a national referendum before a peace agreement could be concluded.

If the referendum bill passes, that means the Knesset cannot decide on its own to surrender one inch of land in all of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights as well as any other areas that Israel might annex in the future.

Tuesday’s vote was on what is called the “Governance Bill,” which not only increases the minimum vote needed for party representation in the Knesset, but also limits the size of the Cabinet to 18 ministers.

The number of votes a party needs to enter the Knesset is the most controversial part of the bill, and Jewish Home Knesset Member Nissan Slomiansky warned that it could backfire on some parties who are riding the crest of popularity today but forget that every day is topsy-turvy Purim in Israeli politics.

Slomiansky is a long-time veteran of the old National Religious Party, which won only three Knesset seats in the elections in 2006.

Meretz also once had only three seats, but it can be argued that the new limits will encourage some people to vote for a certain party. Even if they are not enthusiastic about a certain party, they might not want to see the party lose out altogether.

The previous threshold of 2 percent for party representation made a mockery of democracy, giving every weirdo a shot at succeeding in gaining 60,000 or so votes and becoming a legislator, even if the party’s platform is wacky or simply political impossible.

In many Western countries, the minimum required for seats in the legislature varies from 4 percent in Austria and Sweden to 5 percent in Belgium and Germany

In the last Israeli elections, the perennial Marijuana “Green Leaf” party won 13,000 voters who essentially threw their ballots in the garbage can.

Polls Show No Chance for Obama to Wreck Netanyahu Coalition

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Two new polls show that Israel is marching rightward and that the nationalist and religious parties would even be stronger than in the current coalition if elections were held today, mostly at the expense of Yair Lapid

The Likud Beitenu party, which reflects the merger of Likud and Yisrael Beitenu that still may be dissolved, would increase its strength from 31 in the current Knesset to 34, according to a Channel 1 poll, and 40 according to a survey by Geocartography. The second poll also showed that if the two parties were to split, they would win a combined number of 55 mandates

The Jewish Home party, headed by Naftali Bennett, would hold its own, with one poll showing a gain of one seat and the other a loss of one seat. If Likud and Yisrael Beitenu were to split, the strength of Jewish Home would sink to seven.

The left-wing Meretz party, which now has six Knesset Members, would gain one or four seats in the next Knesset, depending on which poll is accepted.

The increased strength of Likud Beiteinu comes at the expense of Yair Lapid and his Yesh Atid party, which was the star of the last election by winning 19 seats. The Channel 1 poll gives it only 9 seats and the Geocartography survey came up with 13.

Despite the difference in the results, the trend is clear – a sharp rise for Likud Beiteinu and a punch in the pace for Lapid. The “champion of the middle class” has lost its luster as the truth quickly emerges that he represents the upper middle class.

He has an ace up his sleeve if he can bring down the price of housing, but that is not about to happen tomorrow, next month or even this year.

The gain of Meretz and Likud Beiteinu at his expense indicates that Lapid’s charisma attracted leftists and center right secular nationalists.

As for the other parties, Shas still is around and will stay or more at less with 11 seats, according to the polls.

Labor, now under the lead of Yitzchak Herzog instead of Shelly, Yachimovich, would drop from the current 15 to 11 or gain one seat.

Both polls reveal that Tzipi Livni’s HaTunah party would be cut in half in the Knesset, from the current six MKs to only 3.

One surprise result is that former MK Aryeh Eldad, Baruch Marzel and Itamar Ben-Gvir, all of them to the right of the right, would win three seats.

Haredi Leaders Call Ruling for New Beit Shemesh Vote ‘Corrupt’

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

Haredi political leaders across the board called a court ruling for new elections in Beit Shemesh” corrupt,” “racist” and a sign of “dictatorship,” among other less than complimentary adjectives.

The court accepted a petition by Attorney General Yehudah Weinstein that documented corruption in the voting October 22 as ground for voiding the election results, which gave  incumbent Shas Mayor Moshe Abutbul a 956-vote victory over Jewish Home challenger Eli Cohen.

The real corruption is the court decision itself, according to Haredi Knesset Member Menachem Eliezer Moses of the United Torah Judaism party.

Not only was it corrupt to invalidate a proven corrupt election, it also was “racist,” he said. Any time a court rules against Haredim, it is “racist.” If it rules in favor of Haredim, it is proof of God’s will.

Shas Party chairman Aryeh Deri was much more polite and limited his disgust at the decision by stating that the judges surrendered to a “media campaign” to cancel a democratic decision. Perhaps he thinks corruption is democratic.

The booby prize for idiotic reactions goes to United Torah Judaism Knesset Member Yisrael Eichler, who stated that the decision “proves there is no difference between dictatorships in the Egyptian and Israeli judiciaries.”

He suggested that Israel’s secular court might declare Haredim illegal, just like the Egyptian courts ruled against Muslim Brotherhood, which now is an official terrorist organization.

He opened his mouth too wide by lumping  the Brotherhood, the mother of Hamas, with Haredim.

Court Orders New Elections in Beit Shemesh

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

The Jewish Home party won its day in court on Thursday with an administration court ruling that the October 22 elections for the Beit Shemesh mayor and city council are invalid because of suspected fraud. The court ordered a new vote.

Jewish Home mayoral candidate lost the election by 956 votes to Shas party incumbent Mayor Moshe Abutbul.

Shortly before the voting, police raid several homes and found identification cards that were in the hands of impersonators, and investigators said there is evidence of widespread fraud and suspicion of possible organized crime behind the forgeries.

Amazingly, Mayor Abutbul’s attorney told the court that, sure, there were some forgeries, but “you have to prove that all of the votes [separating Abutbul and Cohen] were invalid in order to cancel the elections. This is simple math. The police raided several homes and caught 120 identification cards, 36 of which were used to vote illegally. These are the facts, and the rest is speculation.”

Nice try, but no go, said the court. It is not just speculation; it is evidence that the foul play“went to the roots of the elections,” the court’s judges wrote in their ruling. It noted that “public trust collapsed.”

Shas is not known for clean politics. Neither is the Likud, but Shas’ problem is that it gets caught more often. It does not have the finesse of the Ashkenazi elite to be crooked and get away with it.

Just ask Aryeh Deri, who has returned to head the party after time ran out on his not being able to hold public office by virtue of his conviction and prison sentence for bribery, which politicians, religious and secular, think is not illegal if is a mitzvah.

Thursday’s decision was victory for the Jewish Home party, which already tastes an electoral victory in the re-run of the votes. A date has not yet been announced, but Beit Shemesh residents are anxious to vote again.

The city has been severely divided over religion. A radical Haredi cult has made life miserable for many national religious families. Many secular residents are furious over the increasing Haredi influence, let alone the radicals who want separate sidewalks for men and women.

A relatively large number of Americans live in Beit Shemesh, located a few miles west of Jerusalem. One of them is Dov Lipman, who now is a Knesset Member for the Yesh Atid party.

Lapid Stages Slight Comeback in Polls

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party would win 14 Knesset seats if elections were held today, compared with 11 in a poll in November, according to the Hebrew-language Walla! website.

The increased strength is attributed to recent bills on more rights for homosexuals that Yesh Atid has sponsored, although they not yet been passed into law. The results still show Lapid is far from returning to his present Knesset representation of 19 Knesset Members.

The poll gave the Jewish Home party 11 seats, one less than it now holds in the Knesset, while Shas would nine seats, two less than it now holds. Shas is holding its own better than expected since the recent death of the party founder and spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

Party chairman Aryeh Deri and his predecessor Eli Yishai are in in a power struggle that could divide the party.

Haredi Voters in Beit Shemesh Admit They Gave ID Cards to Others

Friday, December 13th, 2013

Several Haredi residents in Beit Shemesh have confessed to police investigators that they gave the identification cards to others to vote in their place, Israel radio reported.

On Election Day, police confiscated approximately 200 identification cards and disguises. Attorney General Yehudah Weinstein appealed to the courts to violate the recent elections in Beit Shemesh, and he judges asked for more proof.  The identification card fraud pointed to an “intentional and systematic attempt to alter the election’s results,” Weinstein told the court.

The false voters disguised themselves while in a nearby apartment so they would not be recognized and then arrived at polling stations.

If a new election is held, the Jewish Home party is expecting their candidate, Eli Cohen, will win. Shas incumbent Mayor Moshe Abutbul beat Cohen by only 956 votes.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/haredi-voters-in-beit-shemesh-admit-they-gave-id-cards-to-others/2013/12/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: