News Nosh 4.19.20

APN's daily news review from Israel
Sunday April 19, 2020

 You Must Be Kidding: 

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's son, Yair Netanyahu, wrote on Twitter Thursday following a protest against the premier that he hopes "the elderly people who die following this protest will be from your bloc," referring to left-wing parties.**

Front Page:
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • The way out - The restrictions to be eased
  • Protect citizens, prevent economic disaster // Prof. Amnon Shashua
  • School returns to children’s room (Hebrew)
  • The choice of life of Elisaf Peretz - After losing two brothers, he did not submit to the pain and leads an initiative for Memorial Day in the shadow of corona
  • Mutual deterrence: This is how IDF and Hezbollah avoid escalation // Yossi Yehoshua (Hebrew)
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
  • Tension increases: Wave of demonstrations today against the government
  • The main restrictions being eased
  • The closed businesses will collapse // Yehuda Sharoni
  • Remembrance from afar - On the occasion of Holocaust Memorial Day on Tuesday, Zoom meetings to be held between ultra-Orthodox and secular people to heal the rifts in society
Israel Hayom

Top News Summary:
Today's Hebrew newspapers announced that Israel tentatively begins its first partial exit from the corona restrictions, Kahol-Lavan leader Benny Gantz said he and the Likud were close to an agreement for a coalition government, on the northern border, Hezbollah and Israel exchanged warnings, and in the south, Hamas said it's still waiting for an Israeli response to the prisoner exchange offer.

Over the weekend, the IDF found three holes in the border fence between Israel and Lebanon. The Israeli military analysts said this was the Hezbollah response to Israel’s airstrike on a Hezbollah jeep last week. The analysts agreed that both sides are trying to avoid an action that will set off a deterioration that could lead to a conflict. (See Amos Harel, Yossi Yehoshua and Ron Ben-Yishai in Commentary/Analysis below.)

On Friday, the political leader of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, said he was "optimistic about the possibility of reaching an agreement (with Israel) to exchange prisoners...If Israeli leaders are serious - we are ready to come to a deal to free our prisoners. Some parties and mediators contacted Hamas and looked at the possibilities we would be willing to agree to. We showed them what may be the key to this issue." The senior Hamas official also said that "the release of prisoners is a goal we aim to achieve, in fact, at all costs." In a surprisingly frank expression of cooperation with Israel, Haniyeh said, “We are at a historic juncture and a strategic threat and everyone must believe in the principle of partnership to confront what we are exposed to," he added. As reported, the organization announced that the humanitarian initiative it proposed to Israel regarding a prisoner exchange deal is still in place. A statement issued by the organization on the occasion of Palestinian Prisoner Day read: "The humanitarian initiative we have proposed to Israel still stands. This initiative was proposed because of the medical dangers the prisoners are exposed to in the shadow of the corona epidemic. The door is open to any mediator who has serious and substantial answers from Israel to our proposal." However, Haaretz+ reported that the head of Hamas' political office, Musa Dudin, said Friday that Israel was not taking the Hamas proposal seriously. "We want to be transparent with our public," said Dudin. "As of now Israel is not serious about the deal." In exchange for the four Israeli prisoners - two alive and two killed in one of the Gaza Wars - Hamas demands a release of the elderly, sick and minors, as well as those released in the Shalit deal, some 60 Palestinian prisoners whome Israel released in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, but then  rearrested in the following years.

Elections 2020 / Netanyahu Indictment News:
Kahol-Lavan leader, Benny Gantz, said that there has been a significant breakthrough in negotiations for a unity government with the Likud party, and the that the two sides are close to signing an agreement. (Maariv) Haaretz+ reported that Gantz, who is Speaker of Knesset, is delaying approving two bills, one which would bar Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu from forming a government while he or she is under criminal indictment. The other bill, to "freeze the political situation in Israel,” was proposed by Yesh Atid chairman MK Yair Lapid, one of Gantz’s former political partners. The bill would prevent the forming of a government for the next six months during the corona crisis - and it was intended to make it possible for Gantz not to join the coalition at this time. (Maariv)

As the possibility rises of a law being passed preventing Netanyahu from being prime minister, his off-the-record reactions to this possibility have become known. Almost two weeks after Haaretz’s Gidi Weitz reported that Netanyahu has been telling his associates that Israel is controlled by a ‘deep state,’ Weitz reported Friday that Netanyahu has been telling his associates that the High Court is part of a judicial “deep state.” “Let there be no doubt, the High Court will take the opportunity to oust me,” Netanyahu said in these conversations. Netanyahu also warned that if the court prevents him from being prime minister, or if a law is enacted banning him from running for the post in the future, a civil rebellion will erupt. “Masses will take to the streets,” Netanyahu warned. “There will be a call to boycott the election.”

Corona News and Quickees:

Netanyahu announced Saturday night that Israel would ease some coronavirus restrictions affecting public life and economic activity. Some stores will be allowed to open as well as high-tech and finance industries and industrial plants. Social distancing will be still enforced.  At the request of ultra-Orthodox Health Minister Litzman praying will be allowed in groups of 10. The government approved the proposal late Saturday after a six-hour meeting.

  • Israel's coronavirus fatalities up to 172, with 13,362 confirmed cases - Health Ministry reports 13,362 confirmed cases across the country, with 156 people now in critical condition, a 6.6% drop compared to 24 hours ago. Additionally, 109 patients are on ventilators, a 7.6% decline from the previous day's figures. (Ynet and Israel Hayom)
  • Israel Mulls Expanding Number of People Shin Bet Can Track for Coronavirus - In response to High Court petition by activists and journalists, public health chief argues for expanding reach of monitoring by Israel's internal security service. (Haaretz+)
  • Hundreds (Haaretz) or thousands (Ynet) in Tel Aviv Turn Out Over Police Curbs on Protests During the Coronavirus Crisis - 'Netanyahu is jeopardizing Israel's democracy,' says former Shin Bet chief at the Thursday night rally. Police have toughened the rules for holding demonstrations amid the coronavirus crisis, though these steps are not grounded in law, state emergency regulations or Health Ministry orders. (Haaretz+ and Ynet)
  • **Netanyahu's Son Says He 'Hopes' Leftists Will Die of Coronavirus Following Protest - Yair Netanyahu's tweet was reply to photo posted by chairman of the left-wing party Meretz at a Tel Aviv protest against corruption. (Haaretz+)
  • Israeli Lab to Stop Coronavirus Testing After Dozens Misdiagnosed - Dozens of elderly people from two different nursing homes received false positives; at least 16 were taken to coronavirus wards, where they were heavily exposed to the virus. (Haaretz+ and JPost)
  • Deir el-Asad declared restricted area after spike in virus cases - Extensive testing efforts last week showed 589% increase in new cases in Arab town while national rate of infection has been 4% for past 12 days; 27 people confirmed to have contracted coronavirus since Friday morning. (Yedioth/Ynet)
  • A Fine for Not Wearing a Mask: These Are Israel's New Coronavirus Regulations - Stores that operate outside shopping center allowed to open ■ Praying in groups of up to 19 permitted in an open space ■ Special education to resume activity in classes of up to three children. (Haaretz and Ynet)
  • WATCH: Empty Planes Fly ‘Holy Fire’ From Jerusalem Church to 10 Countries Amid Coronavirus - The ceremony typically draws tens of thousands of worshippers to an imposing grey edicule in the Holy Sepulchre that is believed to contain the tomb where Jesus lay two thousand years ago. This year only a handful of Greek, Armenian, Russian and Coptic clergy, many garbed in black and wearing face masks, were present Saturday inside the church to receive the flame from the patriarch. (Agencies, Ynet and Haaretz+VIDEO and Israel Hayom)
  • Eastern Christians mark Easter in shuttered Jerusalem church - Services Sunday were conducted under restrictions imposed by the Israeli government in efforts to stop the spread of coronavirus, in what had in previous years been full churches with pilgrims from all over the world in attendance. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • With Ramadan Approaching, Pressure Builds Up in Israeli Arab City Fearing a Spike in Coronavirus Cases - Residents of Umm al-Fahm, as well as city officials and police, are aware that the worst is yet to come. (Haaretz+)
  • Ramadan prayers banned at al-Aqsa mosque due to virus - Ban on Muslim prayer at the 35-acre complex is effectively an extension of an existing order; Waqf urges parishioners to pray at home 'to preserve safety'; order includes closure of all mosques in the Gaza Strip and West Bank. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • At Empty Western Wall, Praying for Those Who Aren’t Allowed In - The thrice-daily prayers at the Western Wall, approved by the cabinet, are streamed on Facebook Live and get hundreds of thousands of views. (Haaretz+)
  • Ultra-Orthodox Leaders Held Large Passover Gatherings, Violating Israel's Coronavirus Regulations - Most of the Haredi community is said to have observed the health restrictions meticulously, but some leading rabbis even violated their own admonitions. (Haaretz+)
  • Police stun grenade injures 9-year-old in ultra-Orthodox Jerusalem neighborhood - Tensions high as Israeli police disrupt prayer gatherings that violate coronavirus regulations. (Haaretz+)
  • Israel to Compel Refugees to Return Money Used During Coronavirus Crisis - Under right-wing pressure, executive alters law allowing destitute asylum seekers to withdraw some of the money the gov't forces them to save as incentive to leave Israel. (Haaretz+)
  • U.S. Announces $5m Coronavirus Grant to Palestinians After a Two-year Freeze of Aid - The Trump administration 'is committed to assisting the Palestinian people and others worldwide in this crisis,' Ambassador Friedman says. (Haaretz+)
  • Coronavirus doesn't scare them. These Israelis are prepared for the apocalypse - Some are stockpiling guns while others are learning to live without food. These survivalists are preparing for a catastrophe much bigger than the COVID-19. And don’t even get them started on toilet paper. (Haaretz+)
  • Coronavirus Grant to Palestinians Not a Policy Change on Aid Cuts, U.S. Officials Say - But there were political considerations in including Palestinians in a broader coronavirus response package, as the Trump administration still hopes to push peace plan. (Haaretz+)
  • Turkey's Coronavirus Cases Overtake Iran, Highest in Middle East - An increase of 3,783 cases in the last 24 hours also pushed Turkey's confirmed tally within a few hundred of China, where the novel coronavirus first emerged. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Iran's coronavirus death toll exceeds 5,000 - Iranian health official says country has 80,868 confirmed cases of the virus. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei exempts believers from fasting during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan if it threatens their health. (Israel Hayom)
  • Iran Displays Medical Gear, Not Missiles, for National Army Day Parade Amid Outbreak - The parade, which normally features marching infantry, missiles, submarines, armored vehicles and warplanes, underscored the military's role in the fight against the pandemic. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Pompeo urges UN to extend arms embargo on Iran - US Secretary of State warns lifting the ban will destabilize the Middle East. Russia, an ally of Iran that has veto power in the Security Council, has already announced that it would not support extending the arms embargo. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)
  • Lebanon's Coronavirus Lockdown Leaves Migrant Women Penniless and Stranded - Tens of thousands of domestic workers are stuck inside the country after it shut its borders, many with their passports being held by their employers to keep them from leaving without permission. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Hundreds of Thousands of Children Could Die From Coronavirus Fallout, UN Warns - The coronavirus crisis is turning into a child's rights crisis, UN report says, with the most vulnerable at the highest risk. (Agencies, Haaretz)
Other Quick Hits:
  • Suspect of murder in Lod: 48-year-old woman was shot dead - Initial investigations indicate that an anonymous motorcycle rider entered a house Friday in the Lod neighborhood, shot the (Arab-Israeli) woman while eating a meal with her husband and fled the scene. A suspect was arrested the following day. The Women Against Violence Association stated: "Since the beginning of the Corona crisis, we have warned about the consequences of the crisis on women in general and Arab women in particular. We have approached the Minister of Public Security, and a number of other ministries and units, including the welfare departments of the Arab local authorities. Unfortunately, despite the fact that we have a large number of women in the line of assistance, our hotline has received numerous calls, showing a rise in violence against women.” The hotline had an increase of 19% of calls in 2019, and in 202, the calls have increased by more than 120%, the organization said. (Maariv and Haaretz Hebrew)
  • Biden Embraces J Street Endorsement, but Doesn’t Give Up on AIPAC - 'All of us in the pro-Israel, pro-peace community know that the path to a better future begins with defeating Donald Trump at the polls,' J Street president Jeremy Ben Ami says. (Haaretz+)

Elections 2020/Netanyahu Indictment Commentary/Analysis:
Netanyahu no longer wants a unity government, he wants to crush the Supreme Court (Yossi Verter, Haaretz+) It’s now clear that eradicating the coronavirus is out and preventing the judiciary from curbing Netanyahu's power is in.
Gantz Refuses to See the Writing on the Wall (Haaretz Editorial) The chairman of Kahol Lavan is refusing to internalize the fact that it’s not the coronavirus but Netanayhu’s looming trial that is the only threat on the prime minister’s mind, and that it is only his attempt to evade a trial that is driving him to seek a partnership with Gantz. How many more hints does Gantz need in order to see the full picture? Only last week Gantz and his associates realized that Netanyahu was insisting on controlling the appointment of justices who would be judging his case. This should have been sufficient to understand what Netanyahu is really after.
Benny Gantz Is in Netanyahu’s Hands (Carolina Landsmann, Haaretz+) Gantz did not get trapped in Netanyahu’s hands, he placed himself there in full view of the entire country, stating honestly what he believed: “Netanyahu, this is the moment of truth.” Now, the ball is in Netanyahu’s hands. He must decide if he’s going to be loyal to the country and its citizens and establish a national emergency cabinet to deal with the coronavirus, leaving his legal fate solely in the hands of the courts, or whether he’s going to crush Gantz and prove that Netanyahu is above all else.
We must enter a unity government like when you swallow a bitter and necessary medicine (Prof. Arieh Eldad, Maariv) Reality requires the establishment of a unity government, but it is also important to remember at this time: Israel's political system is very ill, and it is not Netanyahu who surrenders to Gantz - but the right that surrenders to Netanyahu.
The political burial place of the Number 2s under Netanyahu is unknown - and yet they continue to believe in the prime minister (Ben Caspit, Maariv) A row of politicians believed in the prime minister when he signed agreements with them, and they discovered that it was an trick that cost them their political lives. It's an known fact - so why doesn’t the Kahol-Lavan chairman, Benny Gantz, knock the table over, break the rules and advance, with all possible force, the package of laws that is hanging over Netanyahu's head  - limiting tenure and of course not allowing a criminal defendant to form a government? It’s a great question, which I don't really know how to answer, but there is a thesis that this time Bibi is serious. It's unlike anything we've ever seen. All those promises were made on other days, not under indictment with three counts of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. This time Netanyahu's situation is complicated, the threats to him are many, and his only way to secure another year and a half in Balfour (the prime minister’s residence) is to go with Gantz to unity and rotation.

Other Commentary/Analysis:
The Pigs of Kibbutz Lahav - Look at Them and See Israel (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+) The pigs of Kibbutz Lahav scream in pain. “The high-pitched, thin, hysterical screams emerge from newborn piglets. In a room that looks like a narrow, dark crawl space, lit by artificial red light, workers are sitting and cutting off the tails and penises with a kind of scissors.” (Haaretz Hebrew edition, April 10). The description could leave no reader indifferent. But the kibbutz business manager, Yossi Cohen, was in fact indifferent to this description, which, as he put it, “serves an agenda.” Documentation in the slaughterhouse was illegal, he said. The report should be directed against the 95 percent of Israelis who eat meat, not against his kibbutz; at Lahav there are good people, he wrote (Haaretz Hebrew edition, April 17). There are indeed good people at Kibbutz Lahav. I knew two of them, the late Tamar Golan, and Haim Oron, and no one is more deserving of that description than they are. Lahav is also a kibbutz that belongs to a moment that is entirely well-intentioned. But in a place that is all good intentions and good people, the most terrifying crimes are being committed. It’s 2020, and it seems that we no longer need to explain that the torture of helpless animals is like the torture of human beings.
Under the auspices of corona: The right-wing government is trying to promote a hopeless annexation process (Ran Edelist, Maariv) Netanyahu's trick is to take advantage of the corona distraction and to get approval from Trump. At the same time, he keeps pumping the Iranian balloon - an important addition to justify any of his moves.
Will the coronavirus make you empathize with us Gazans? (Mohammed Azaiza, Gaza Strip, Haaretz+) When this crisis is finally over, will Israel lift the restrictions on movement that it imposes on the two million people in the Strip?
Like the Egyptians, Hamas also keeps the contacts with Israel only to themselves (Jacky Khougy, Maariv) Hamas detained young men who dared to hold a Zoom conversation with Israelis, accusing them of contacting the occupation. But someone there has forgotten the many normal expressions of the Gaza Strip (by Hamas) with Israel.
Is a prisoner swap with Hamas really feasible? (Daniel Siryoti, Israel Hayom) Hamas is in desperate need of a diplomatic win. A deal with Israel for the release of prisoners, medical aid and other humanitarian gestures will grant the organization something to show its people. In Israel, the belief is that the terrorist group can still lower its asking price.
Hamas Leader's Hint to Israel: We Don't Need Egypt and Qatar (Ronit Marzan, Haaretz+) Through an allegory from the Book of Ezekiel, Sinwar is signaling to Israel a desire to forgo Egyptian and Qatari mediation and begin direct contacts.
Tribal Police: When the state allows the Bedouin to conduct their affairs according to desert laws (Kalman Libskind, Maariv) As long as the shootouts in Rahat, the proteccion in Um Al-Batin, the threat to the mayor of Al-Qasum, and the tax scams in Tel Sheva, don’t receive the same attention for criminal activity that is carried out outside the Bedouin sector - nothing will change.
Israel Faces a Dilemma as It Inches Toward Coronavirus Containment (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Timely lockdown measures saved lives and averted the collapse of the health care system, but Israel remains terribly passive on two critical issues; Israelis snitch on each other amid coronavirus fears, showing signs of police state mentality.
The peace process will have to wait (Harry Markham, Israel Hayom) It is utterly futile speaking of topographical solutions or future peace plans until we first address the ultimate catalyst for this conflict, which is the Islamic world's refusal to accept the right of a Jewish state to exist.
Maintaining mutual deterrence (Yossi Yehoshua, Yedioth Hebrew) Israel - according to foreign publications - carried out an Operation Tap the Vehicle on a Hezbollah jeep and tried to say 'beware,' Nasrallah, we could kill, but decided against it. Nasrallah responded with Operation Tap the Fence and answered with the same type of currency: we made three openings in the fence, we did not enter, and we decided against it. So following the attack on the jeep on the Syrian-Lebanon border, Hezbollah squads cut three holes in the fence on the northern border - without causing casualties. The latest two events sharpen the question that has been hovering over the northern front since the end of the Second Lebanon War: who's deterring whom? Each party is convinced that it is daunting, but in the field it behaves differently, with extreme caution, to avoid at all costs a move that will cause the other party to respond with the intensity that will cause a flare-up. And so it was this week. On the ground, both Israel and Nasrallah's organization are avoiding a deterioration that will lead to another round (of war).
As Israel and Hezbollah Trade Barbs, Army Sees Opportunity in Coronavirus Crisis (Amos Harel, Haaretz+)  Even when the government’s attention, and a good deal of the Israeli army’s efforts, are invested in fighting COVID-19, Israel has not deviated from the red lines it has set in the north.
The IDF and Hezbollah exchange threatening messages during the days of Corona (Ron Ben-Yishai, Ynet Hebrew) On Wednesday, the IDF made the "Tap the Vehicle" procedure that warned the senior member of the Hezbollah organization who was making his way to Syria. On Saturday night, the response came: Triple damage to the border fence with Lebanon, but without penetration into Israel. Gently, cautiously and under fear of escalation in parallel with the plague, Hezbollah continues to establish itself in the Golan, while the IDF works to prevent it.
Israel Is Heading for a Shin Bet Police State (Friday Haaretz Editorial) The Health Ministry’s head of public services, Prof. Siegal Sadetzki, told the court her office was considering expanding surveillance by the Shin Bet significantly. Sadetzki’s statement should sound a great warning – Israel is now on a slippery slope. Nothing was more expected than the state’s attempt to expand the use of surveillance methods. The pattern is familiar and dangerous: Start with ostensibly minimal means for a limited time, then expand the means and duration until they become permanent. Now it’s the fight against the coronavirus, tomorrow it will be the fight against crime – and finally the fight against the government’s opponents. History is paved with examples of emergency measures becoming routine.
The dilemma of emptying jails in a pandemic (Jonathan S. Tobin, Israel Hayom) Jails are coronavirus breeding grounds, but the efforts of Jewish anti-Zionists to free Palestinian terrorists speak volumes about their goals
In Arab Countries, Coronavirus Patients Are Guilty Until Proven Innocent (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) COVID-19 is sometimes seen as a punishment from the heavens, and many people won’t let medical professionals into their homes for fear of the stigma.
Israel's government is experimenting with our health (Sarit Rosenblum, Yedioth/Ynet) No steps were taken to preempt a resurgence of COVID-19 - there is not enough testing, or proper quarantine and no special paid attention to the dangers posed to the elderly - so it is up to us the public to protect ourselves.
Should Coronavirus Mean Israel Shuts the Door on Jews, Dead or Alive? (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) Right now, Israel looks a lot safer than in New York, London or Paris. Does Israel have a moral duty to serve as a haven for Jews against the COVID-19 plague, and to welcome their bodies for burial here?
Pandemics, Palestinian incitement and peace (Caroline B. Glick, Israel Hayom) The Palestinians, like their authoritarian brethren in Iran and beyond, drive home the difference between democracies and dictatorships. In the future, when we get confused over where justice lies, we need to look no further than how each government behaved during the coronavirus pandemic.
Who is really making the decisions on how to manage the corona crisis? (Jacob Nagel, Israel Hayom) Anyone suggesting that crisis management should be transferred to the IDF, one of the ministries or any other entity is not only suggesting that management is taken out of the hands of the NSC, but essentially also wants to take the responsibility for the decision making away from the prime minister.
The Perils of Social Distancing and Remote Schooling in Palestine (Umm Forat, Haaretz+) Supermarket workers push customers out as 5 P.M. approaches – ‘police,’ they whisper apologetically to those who seem surprised at their uncharacteristic strictness ■ Post #11
The Arab public is afraid to say "Grandpa died from corona" (Attorney Khaled Dagash, Ynet Hebrew) The investment in public relations regarding corona in Arab society is meager and unfocused. It did not take into account the problem of the stigma of the virus, and the result: Arab adults are dying at home.
And What About Finding a Vaccine for Israel's Political Virus? (Israel Harel, Haaretz+) For a long time, especially since the September election, Israel has been living with a persistent virus – the virus of political instability and intense opposition to the prime minister in many influential circles, including state institutions. These days, this opposition is reflected in knee-jerk condemnation of the prime minister’s moves, even the successful ones, against the pandemic. No system is particularly busy seeking a cure for the government system; that is, for the virus afflicting the social, political and legal systems.
Netanyahu's Fear of a Diplomatic Spat With Trump Amid the Coronavirus Crisis Risked Israeli Lives (Noa Landau, Haaretz+) Health Ministry figures pointing to hundreds of coronavirus patients coming into Israel from the U.S. bear out results of delay in isolating returnees.
Israel needs a diplomatic strategy (Dr. Ronen Hoffman, Yedioth/Ynet) Israel’s aversion to formulating comprehensive and integrative diplomatic strategy over past decade is a mistake at best and neglect of its national security needs at worst; the next government must break out of this bunker for the sake of the country's future.
Saudi Arabia Lost the Oil War, but Don’t Expect the Crown Prince to Go (David Rosenberg, Haaretz+) Mohammad bin Salman was playing a game of high-stakes poker with Russia, but he didn’t have the hand to risk it.
Backlash Against Trump's Coronavirus Response May Pose an Opportunity for Netanyahu (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Trump could greenlight unprecedented steps vis-à-vis Israel to pander to his evangelical base. Is Netanyahu in the mindset to make unilateral moves?
'Netanyahu's actions more dangerous than coronavirus'
In an exclusive interview, Edward Snowden, the man who bared the secrets of American intelligence, says he is surprised that Israelis are not furious over the use of Shin Bet anti-terrorism measures to track people infected with the virus, which he calls 'intolerable.’ (Interviewed by Ronen Bergman in Yedioth/Ynet + AUDIO)
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.