APN's daily news review from Israel - Monday September 7, 2020
Quote of the day:
"When the borders in the north and around Gaza are burning, when corona is raging and the epidemic is
taking off, when our money is wildly distributed to bribe sectors of society close to those in rule [the
ultra-Orthodox], when [anti-Netanyahu] demonstrations are gaining momentum, when [Netanyahu's] bribery trial is
imminent and prison is a reasonable option, when the number of unemployed is close to a million - what do you do?
That’s right. You flee. The country of escape this week is Abu Dhabi."
--Maariv commentator Ran Edelist on why Israel and the UAE normalized relations now.*
- Under pressure from the ultra-Orthodox, Netanyahu withdrew from lockdown; Night curfew will be put on dozens of towns
- >Record low // Amos Harel
- Life and death // Yossi Verter
- >The red line // Anshel Pfeffer
- Hospital in the north: we will be forced to transfer patients to the center of the country
- Municipalities report on closure of classrooms due to detection of corona infected
- >The artist who was arrested because he demonstrated in an outfit of a naked woman was forced to be searched naked
- The publication of his disdain for US Army fallen hits Trump’s soft belly at a sensitive time // Chemi Shalev
- The State Prosecution opposes the National Forensic Institute's opinion regarding Zadorov (man convicted of murder who claims for years that he is innocent)
- >He has no future // Raviv Drucker
- When there is no budget // Hagai Amit writes that while the government is stuck without passing a budget politicians are using it to make political appointments
- The replacement of Efi Naveh (former head of Israel Bar Association who was indicted on corruption charges) on the Committee to Appoint Judges expresses support for the judicial system and promises he will act from pertinent considerations
- >They decide, then give in: This is how the corona crisis is run
- There is no leadership // Nahum Barnea
- The origami // Sima Kadmon
- Shameful // Ben-Dror Yemini
- Classroom in a Catch-22 // Chen Artzi-Sror (>Hebrew)
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
- Political closure (of cities)
- The (political) arena is heating up
- Not a corona incubator - Health Ministry dispelled the doubts about the anti-Netanyahu demonstrations
- Instead of lockdown: night curfew
- Stop the ear plugging: lockdown and now // Ran Resnick
- >Prime Minister and the ultra-Orthodox: Belief vs trust // Mati Tuchfeld
- The state should ask for forgiveness from the ultra-Orthodox // Menachem Gasheid
- In the Arab sector, bullying does not work // Jalal Bana
- Lesson in things out of control - School year began, but many schools are closing; Students and teachers in quarantine
- Red code - visit to the ‘red cities’ a moment before lockdown
- A/C state: Heat won’t end even in the coming days
- Stormy hearing in the Zadorov trial: “It’s clear to the prosecution that he is innocent”
- California is battling a wave of fires - Israeli firefighters are helping the effort
Top News Summary:
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu gave in to ultra-Orthodox political leaders and mayors, and did not impose the planned lockdown on their “red” cities - making today’s top story in the Hebrew newspapers. Also making headlines was the police mistreatment of an artist who wore a"nude" costume to the anti-Netanyahu demonstration and the Health Ministry declaration about corona and the anti-Netanyahu protesters.
Yedioth’s political correspondent, Yuval Karni, writes that there are a number of reasons >why Netanyahu gave in to the ultra-Orthodox and backed off from the lockdown plan: the size of their political block, which he depends on for his political survival, that his right-wing opponent, MK Naftali Bennett, weakens as the epidemic gets worse and that four ultra-Orthodox mayors warned Netanyahu that ultra-Orthodox citizens will rebel against the lockdown and they will cease cooperation with government authorities. So >Netanyahu scrapped the lockdown plan and >opted for night curfews, local schools shuttered and non-essential businesses closed after 7PM for 40 settlements, cities and communities with a high infection rate instead of a full lockdown. The political commentators went into a frenzy that he was putting concern for his political survival above the public's health concerns.
Coalition whip and Netanyahu-loyalist, Likud MK Miki Zohar, has been blaming the anti-Netanyahu protesters for the spike in corona infection. But yesterday, a Health >Ministry official told the Knesset that no case of COVID can be traced to the (anti-Netanyahu) demonstrations.
Netanyahu’s wife has complained of sexual harassment in comments on social media networks. Yesterday, Israeli artist Zeev Engelmayer revealed what happened to him after police detained him Saturday night at the anti-Netanyahu demonstration for wearing a costume of a naked woman. “They took me to the bathroom and ordered: ‘Remove your clothes, turn around, spread your legs,’” he said. The “nude" costume is of the comic book character, ‘Shoshka.’ >Police said he was detained on suspicion he was offensively portraying Sara Netanyahu."They decided it was sexual harassment. They searched my rear,” he said, adding that he will also demonstrate next Saturday. Police later released without charges. (Also, >Ynet Hebrew and PHOTOS and >more.)
- Israel's coronavirus infection rate up to startling 12% - The Health Ministry reports the contagion rate increases by another 2% in less than 24 hours after 2,257 more people tested positive for COVID, with 1 out of every 9 tests returning positive. (>Yedioth/Ynet)
- Official Tells Knesset: No Case of COVID Can Be Traced to (anti-Netanyahu) Demonstration - Health Ministry official’s comment to Knesset committee contradicts claim of coalition whip who blamed protests for upsurge in infections. (>Haaretz+)
- Report: 20% of Israelis would reject use of COVID-19 vaccine - Survey shows Jewish Israelis more inclined to opt for treatment than Arab counterparts; only 64% of ultra-Orthodox Jews say they will get vaccinated if it proves to be safe. (>Ynet)
- Israeli Employment Outlook for Rest of 2020 Looks Grim, Hiring Poll Shows - Survey of 400 Israeli businesses shows only 12 percent expected to step up hiring in final quarter. (>Haaretz+)
Only 54,000 Israelis travel abroad in August - Due to coronavirus, only 54,700 Israelis
traveled abroad in August 2020, compared to 1.2 million in August 2019, according to data from the Central
Bureau of Statistics. (>Israel Hayom)
- Man Tried to Stab Soldiers in the West Bank, Israeli Army Says - The suspect was apprehended after trying to stab soldiers at the Ariel junction, and has been transferred to security services for questioning, IDF statement says. The attempted attack took place in the area where soldiers from the Kedem Battalion of the Home Front Command were operating. The IDF launched a chase and soon after, the terrorist was shot in the leg and arrested, IDF says. (>Maariv and VIDEO, >Haaretz and >Ynet Hebrew and PHOTOS and VIDEO and >Israel Hayom)
- An indictment for serious injury was filed against a settler who shot and injured two Palestinians - The prosecutor's office filed an indictment in the Lod District Court against Eitan Ze'ev, 27, a farmer from Samaria (West Bank) who shot at Palestinians during a mass confrontation. He is charged with aggravated assault in aggravated circumstances. In the incident, which took place near the settlement of Dorot Illit outpost near the village of Biddiya in early July, two Palestinians were moderately injured. Several dozen people demonstrated in front of the court as a sign of support for the defendant. (>Ynet Hebrew, >Haaretz+) and >Times of Israel)
- Suspicion of hate crime in Samaria: Masked people threw stones at and punctured tires of Palestinians’ cars - VIDEO: Around 03:00AM between Saturday night and Sunday, a group of at least eight young people was documented at the entrance to a residential complex in the village of Huwwara, south of Nablus. They smashed windows and punctured car tires, then fled the scene. Police suspect that the background to a nationalist incident. (>Ynet Hebrew and VIDEO)
- Unusual arrest in Jenin: The door of the house was blown up, two (Palestinian) brothers were taken out on stretchers; Israeli army says they were armed - Security forces arrested Ahmad and Muhammad Jad’oun in the Jenin refugee camp Saturday. Military sources say the Palestinians were wounded by explosive device used to break down their house door, while eyewitnesses say they were wounded by live Israeli fire. The unusual arrest was made in broad daylight. A riot broke out at the scene that the IDF said included firing at the forces, but no one was injured. (>Haaretz+ and >Ynet Hebrew with VIDEO and PHOTOS)
- UPDATED: Two Palestinian Brothers in Critical Condition, after Israeli Attack - A Palestinian Detainees’ Committee lawyer, Khaled Mahajna, has reported that after Israeli forces wired and detonated the front door of their home, on Saturday, both Palestinian brothers Ahmad, 22, and Mohammad Jad’oun, 27, remain in critical condition. A massive section of Mohammed's left leg was blown off and the youth has suffered an excessive amount of blood loss and has gone through one surgery and soon another. Ahmad also remains in the Intensive Care Unit, having suffered profound trauma from the explosion, mainly to his face and neck and has undergone two major surgeries to his face, and is scheduled to undergo at least one additional surgery to repair his neck wounds. (>IMEMC and PHOTOS and VIDEOs)
- Hamada Was Dragged From Prison to Prison and Freed Four Days Later Without Being Questioned - Israeli soldiers raided the home of Hamada Tamimi, confiscated phones and a camera, beat up his family and took him away. Nobody explained why. The IDF: His arrest was due to operational considerations. (>Haaretz+)
- Palestinian Detainee Dies In Israeli Prison - The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) reported that Daoud Tal’at Khatib, 45, from Bethlehem, died last week in Ofer Prison, and added that the only information the Israeli authorities are giving so far indicates he died from a heart attack. He was abducted by soldiers in April 2002 and sentenced to 18 years and eight months in prison. He was only a few months away from being released. (>IMEMC)
- After brokering the Israel-Hamas ceasefire, Qataris have increased the grant to families in the Gaza Strip - Qatar has announced that it will increase the number of needy families in the Gaza Strip to whom it provides a monthly grant by about 70 families. The official reason is the corona crisis, but in fact it is a key part of the truce understandings between Israel and Hamas. The Qatari grant will now stand at $17 million a month, to be given to 170,000 families. This is in addition to the fuel payments transferred from Israel to the Gaza Strip power plant in the amount of $10 million per month. As part of the understandings reached at the end of last month, the fishing area in the Gaza Strip was reopened and the Kerem Shalom crossing was opened. In return, Hamas pledged to stop launching incendiary and explosive balloons at Israel. Sources in Israel said after reaching agreements that the Qataris had promised to transfer to the Gaza Strip the money of recent months, which had been delayed, in addition to the corona grant. In Israel, it was estimated that the economic pressure and the renewed outbreak of the corona in the Gaza Strip also influenced Hamas in its decision to withdraw most of its demands. (>Ynet >Hebrew and VIDEO from Gaza)
- Official Tells Knesset: No Case of COVID Can Be Traced to (anti-Netanyahu) Demonstration - Health Ministry official’s comment to Knesset committee contradicts claim of coalition whip who blamed protests for upsurge in infections. (>Haaretz+)
- Clinking champagne glasses, masked demonstrators protest gov't deadlock in Tel Aviv - The exhibition, titled"A Meeting of a Disconnected Government", follows weeks of political stagnation as Likud and Blue & White have failed repeatedly to negotiate terms for a state budget. (>Ynet)
- Lieberman to settler leaders: Do you want sovereignty? Join the demonstrations in Balfour - The chairman of Yisrael Beiteinu met with the heads of the settlers in Samaria and suggested that they join the demonstrations in front of the Prime Minister's Residence. The head of the Samaria Council, one of the prominent registered memebers of the Likud party:"We hear spins from here to the United States, the government has not brought sovereignty [i.e. Israeli annexation of West Bank land].” (>Ynet Hebrew)
- MK Ram Ben-Barak to vie for Yesh Atid party’s leadership - Yeah Atid MK Ram Ben-Barak announced Sunday that he plans to challenge Yair Lapid for the leadership of the party. Ben-Barak thus joins MK Ofer Shelah, who also said he plan to do the same. (>Israel Hayom)
- Israeli business delegations led by Bank Hapoalim, Leumi to visit UAE - Groups led by each of the two banks will visit the Gulf state in the coming weeks amid 'immediate bilateral desire' to establish economic ties. (Agencies, >Haaretz and >Ynet)
- Israeli Carrier Israir Is Preparing for Commercial Flights to UAE - Carrier books eight round-trip flights from Tel Aviv to Dubai International Airport throughout October, El Al is yet to apply for permits to do so. (>Haaretz+)
- Hezbollah, Hamas chiefs meet to discuss Israel-Arab ties - Hezbollah-run Al-Manar TV says Hassan Nasrallah and Ismail Haniyeh met in Beirut to discuss 'the dangers to the Palestinian cause' posed by 'Arab plans for normalization', referring to the UAE-Israel peace deal. (Agencies, >Ynet)
- Turkey 'disappointed' by Kosovo's move to recognize Israel - Turkish foreign ministry blast 'even the thought by Kosovo officials of taking such a step' after the Muslim-majority country said it will set up its Israel mission in Jerusalem and in exchange earn Israel's recognition. (Agencies, >Ynet)
- Israeli Defense Contractor Rafael Announces New Facial Recognition Firm - Rafael and Anyvision shareholders will set up a security company dealing with machine vision; past investigation revealed tech firm monitors West Bank crossings for the IDF. (>Haaretz+)
- Hot in the Holy City: Jerusalem Breaks 120-year Record - As glacial lakes grow and the Amazon burns, the good news is that replacing steak with tofu won’t give you moobs. (>Haaretz+)
- Ruins from First Temple-period palace found in southern Jerusalem - The palace was likely built in the early seventh century B.C.E. in King Hezekiah's time, after Jerusalem had survived a siege by the Assyrians – capitals uncovered show palm tree motif typical of Kingdom of Judah. (>Haaretz+)
- Israel to Allow Gender-segregated Swimming in Dead Sea Nature Reserve - The Israel Nature and Parks Authority says decision to launch a pilot project allowing women and men to bathe in separate hours in the Enot Tsukim Nature Reserve was taken at the request of the religious public. (>Haaretz+)
- Death to Israel' graffiti mars wall near French college - An anti-Semitic graffiti reading"Mort A Israel" –"death to Israel" – was discovered Sunday on a wall outside a parking lot near the Albert Camus College in Perpignan, France. (>Israel Hayom)
- Iran Airs Televised Confession of Wrestler After Trump Tweet Urging Republic to Spare His Life - The case of 27-year-old Navid Afkari has drawn the attention of a social media campaign that portrays him and his brothers as victims targeted over participating in protests against Iran's Shi'ite theocracy in 2018. (Agencies, >Haaretz)
- Officer and 3 assailants killed in Tunisian resort attack - Tunisian forces shot dead three suspected Islamic terrorists who rammed their vehicle into security officers and attacked them with knives, killing one and injuring another in the coastal resort town of Sousse, authorities said Sunday. (Agencies, >Israel Hayom)
The show that brings together a bereaved Palestinian mother and a combat-shock-stricken
Five true stories, which deal with bereavement, death - and which are presented as first-person testimonies - make up the show"The Dreamers.” Creator Nadav Barnea recounts how the idea was born, explains why it is more personal than political. Is it possible to create a theater without a stage and actors? This is the basic question that formed the basis of the production of"The Dreamers,” and will challenge the viewers of the special show that will take place at the Israel Festival, combining video screens, lighting lanterns and music - but without flesh-and-blood performers. Behind the ambitious project is Nadav Barnea, who these days works as a lighting and soundtrack designer for plays and ballet performances, and in this case moves to the front of the stage - which is not really present - as the leading creator."What motivates this thing is my curiosity to have a theater with characters and a story of beginning, middle and end, and to get out of it the most basic factor - the actor's body," Barnea, 33, explains in an interview with Ynet."What actually takes place in this work is a hybrid of documentary cinema, a lighting installation in a museum and a theater experience, with all the aids that belong to the stage. It challenges a lot of perceptions and conventions that challenge you as a theater spectator.""The Dreamers" consists of five parts - each dedicated to a different character who appears on eight video screens, accompanied by 15 flashing sophisticated flashlights and an exact musical soundtrack. A combination of all these elements prolongs the presence of the characters: a 12-year-old Filipina girl named Gana who is facing deportation from Israel, a discharged soldier named Dror Zicherman who was psychologically and physically by a terrorist attack, actress Efrat Ben Tzur reads a song by Dalia Ravikovic and sings a song by Naomi Shemer the Palestinian woman, Bushra Awad, who lost her 17-year-old son who was shot by IDF forces, and the actor Doron Tavori, who reads a text based on interviews with terminally ill patients…A place for each and every one of them, and in the process something general resonates among the viewers about Israeliness as a whole. (Interviewed by Amir Bogen in >Yedioth/Ynet Hebrew and VIDEO CLIP)
With New Film, Former PM Ehud Olmert Hopes to Clear His Name
After serving 16 months for fraud and bribery, Ehud Olmert decided upon his release that he had to document his version of how events unfolded. (Itay Stern, >Haaretz+)
The Real Reasons Israel Showed Solidarity With Lebanon After the Beirut Blast (Roee Kibrik, >Haaretz+) Right-wingers slammed Israel’s offers to help Beirut as a ‘moral travesty’; there was an understandably chilly reception in Lebanon. How does solidarity fit into Israel's foreign policy?
Netanyahu Is Stuck Between Two Impatient Allies: Trump and ultra-Orthodox Leaders (Anshel Pfeffer, >Haaretz+) As Israel is threatened by a total lockdown over Rosh Hashanah to satisfy Haredi rabbis, a trip abroad, even to sign a 'historic' agreement, is insufferable.
*Escape to Abu Dhabi: The agreement is an election exercise by Trump and Netanyahu (Ran Edelist, >Maariv) Were you impressed (with the agreement? Great. Now back to reality: when the borders in the north and around Gaza are burning, when corona is raging and the epidemic is taking off, when our money is wildly distributed to bribe sectors of society close to those in rule [reference to the ultra-Orthodox - OH], when [anti-Netanyahu] demonstrations are gaining momentum, when [Netanyahu's] bribery trial is imminent and prison is a reasonable option, when the number of unemployed is close to a million - what do you do? That’s right. You flee. The country of escape this week is Abu Dhabi. In the midst of the raging reports about the"historic" event, there is a point in brushing off the media confetti and realizing that this is an election exercise by Donald Trump and Binyamin Netanyahu. A delegation of officials on their behalf (even publicly elected) Israelis and Americans, and journalists deaf from the wings of history and blind to reality, came, saw and"won.”..The"historic" event in the Gulf is nothing more than an election exercise that provides the show's hosts with more leverage over the Iranians. The statement, like the entire play, is intended to support the"historic" sense of public stupidity…
There's Future of Israel's Largest Opposition Challenger, but It May Be on the Outside (Raviv Drucker, >Haaretz+) Until now Yair Lapid has been playing it almost perfectly. “We’ll look into it,” he says. “Ofer Shelah is wonderful, talented, popular in my house.” “If he’s elected, I have no problem serving under him.” One can’t help but be impressed by Lapid’s recovery and his political cunning – okay, his pretending. He heard about Shelah’s bid for leadership of Yesh Atid on Monday, reacted very angrily, and on Wednesday he’s already relaxed and conciliatory. The objective is clear: To kill the idea softly. As far as Lapid is concerned, Shelah’s decision is the greatest blow imaginable…Although Shelah was very careful not to provide sound bites for future Likud broadcasts, it’s clear that what he did immediately turned into Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s negative campaign against Lapid… If your good friend, who has known you for 30 years, says that you can’t and you aren’t capable, what do you expect from the Israeli public? Shelah has no future in Yesh Atid (Hebrew for “There is a future”). In the end he will have no choice but to give up his Knesset seat and the important post of State Control Committee chairman, and try to do what he should have done a long time ago. Lead an Israeli left-wing party.
Police violence did not help. The protest is contagious (Yariv Opponent, >Ynet Hebrew) They threw the subject of the submarines (Case 3000) to the ground, they humiliated (artist) Engelmeier, they arrested a 14-year-old and they shoved us all. The spirit of the commander at Balfour [i.e. Netanyahu - OH] is terrified of the protest. And that's a sign that we're in the right direction…It was unpleasant to leave the demonstration at Balfour Saturday night. On my way out, near the police checkpoints, I came across a handful of right-wing demonstrators, supporters of Binyamin Netanyahu, holding the Likud flag and a"traitorous leftists" sign, and throwing curses and threats in every direction. I, too, had to cross the shower of shouts and curses before I could get away from the area. The policemen who stood by did not intervene and allowed the bunch to greet all those leaving the (anti-Netanyahu) demonstration with death wishes. If possible, in agony…This rally was a fitting end to a difficult night at Balfour, where police did everything they could to harass protesters and make it difficult to protest. Everyone who arrived in Jerusalem that night received a message from the police,"You are not welcome here." A series of incidents were recorded in the area in which police officers used force and authority unnecessarily and in any case without cause. A 14-year-old boy was arrested, a single mother was arrested by undercover agents, and it is impossible to count the shoves that came without any provocation. Demonstrations in Balfour are contagious. More and more Israelis are going to Jerusalem every week to inform defendant Netanyahu personally that it is time to leave. Anyone who arrives once becomes a carrier of the protest bacterium and cannot be weaned. The power, enthusiasm, audacity and determination have made the demonstrations in Balfour the most optimistic thing that Israeli democracy has seen in years…And as the demonstrations continue, so does the attempt to stifle them and prevent their continuation. Balfour, too, understands that the only vaccine for government corruption and the destruction of democracy is the ability of citizens to make their voices heard and protest loudly and without fear. That's why they're being pressured. Therefore we must not give up. There will be a war on Balfour. (Yariv Oppenheimer is a member of the Peace Now board.)
The Netanyahu method: The Israeli prime minister is surrounded by garden gnomes devoid of independent existence (Ben Caspit, >Maariv) Netanyahu prefers to adopt weak or weakened people and use them to manage the entire operation. In doing so, he also informs the whole environment that he doesn’t care.
Police Harassment (>Haaretz Editorial) Artist Ze’ev Engelmayer was arrested Saturday at an anti-government demonstration in Jerusalem while dressed as his nude comics character Shoshke. Engelmayer, who has in the past come to many demonstrations dressed as Shoshke, was detained on suspicion of disturbing the peace and sexually harassing the public – although in the penal code no such violation exists. Engelmayer says the questioning was absurd, saying, “I felt as if they were trying to lead me to say I was impersonating Sara Netanyahu, but they never asked me that outright.” Last Wednesday, the cyber unit of Lahav 433 spent four hours questioning blogger Iris Boker on suspicion of sexual harassment of Sara Netanyahu. Public Security Minister Amir Ohana is determined to halt the demonstrations, which are upsetting his master, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu…
Dialogue is key (Jalal Bana, >Israel Hayom) Arab leaders must be made a party to the decision-making process in terms of combating the coronavirus outbreak if we are to avoid having lockdown measures seem more punitive than preventative.
A call to the United Arab Emirates: Prepare for the arrival of the Israeli tourist (Dror Rafael, >Maariv) Dubai, Abu Dhabi and the rest of the UAE, which no one knows what they are called: Fill the buffet, announce discounts in stores and arrange shade at the pool - we are on our way to you.
Folding at 11th Hour, Netanyahu Proves Again Fighting Coronavirus Isn't His Top Priority (Amos Harel, >Haaretz+) Seeking the support of the Haredi parties as his corruption trial is set to reopen in December, PM sacrificed the man he appointed to manage the health crisis, crushing what was left of the public’s trust.
The agenda for neutering the High Court (Elyakim Rubinstein, >Ynet Hebrew) Once again, discussion over the High Court Overriding Law has returned, the one that will harm the strategic asset of the State of Israel. The blunt statements of government officials intensify the concern.
The Left's pretend democracy (Dr. Eithan Orkibi, >Israel Hayom) A former IDF general, MK Yair Golan is part of the social stratum that is convinced it has obtained a special status in our democratic culture and it has adjusted accordingly.
Let's lie to the world that we have stopped sovereignty (Uraib al-Rantawi, >Ynet Hebrew) In fact, the the Emirates were constantly interested in establishing relations with Israel, and were only looking for a cover story that would make it acceptable. So they invented the tale of stopping annexation.
Trump and Netanyahu’s Barefaced Gaslighting on the Israel-Kosovo Deal (Yonatan Touval, >Haaretz+) Don’t buy the spin that mutual recognition is another Trump-era ‘Muslim world’ breakthrough for Israel. It was Israel that refused to recognize Kosovo, for 12 long years.
The deal is good for Israel, so why lie? (Alon Pinkas, >Ynet Hebrew) Netanyahu could have told a simple truth about the F-35 jet deal that was included in an agreement with the Emirates. But when he hides it from (Defense Minister and Kahol-Lavan leader) Benny Gantz and from (Foreign Minister Gabi) Ashkenazi - there is no choice but to deny what Yedioth Ahronoth and the New York Times have revealed.
The main thing is to screw the settlers and “preserve the law" (Tamar Asraf, >Ynet Hebrew) The High Court's decision to evict Mitzpe Kramim is discouraging, shattering families and destroying trust in the establishment. This combination of folly and biased interpretation is toxic.
A new Right, a new Left, and new politics (Jacob Bardugo, >Israel Hayom) Recent activity by Naftali Bennett and Ofer Shelach could bring us back to politics in which ideology, rather than slogans, plays a major role.
When Bezalel Smotrich decides who is a Jew (Prof. Daniel Friedman, >Ynet Hebrew) MK Bezalel Smotrich's bill to repeal the ‘grandson clause’ of the Law of Return [according to which anyone who has at least one grandparent is Jewish can be considered a Jew who can immigrate to Israel - OH] is a destructive and harmful proposal for secular-religious relations in Israel. Near the establishment of the state, David Ben-Gurion promised to maintain the status quo in the state-religion relationship. Since then, a series of laws have been passed that changed the situation to the detriment of the secular public, without giving it any consideration in the form of easing the religious severity. Instead of the “Grandson Clause” in the Law of Return serving as a model for further compromises in religious-secular relations, they are trying to take us back in the stricter religious-Orthodox direction.
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.