Here’s one major reason why I don’t like Israeli coalition politics or why I really don’t like this coalition in particular: The Interior Minister and Chairman of Shas has told the Yesha Council of settlements that it will exploit its influence and resources to continue expanding settlements in the West Bank.
“Haaretz has learned that Yishai has instructed officials at the Interior Ministry to come up with ways to help the settlers, by allowing continued construction within the major West Bank settlement blocs where building has stopped as a result of American pressure.”
Now Shas is one of the smaller parties to which Israel had to grant concessions like the Interior Ministry post in order for them to join. Now they are using their position to conduct a chutzpadik policy not to mention the fact that they find it perfectly all right to use my taxpayer money to fund the so-called “natural growth” of these areas.
The Israeli government’s negative reaction to Obama’s pressure on stopping settlement growth also points to the chutzpah and cluelessness demonstrated by my fellow Israelis. The major complaint that gets me is that they claim they had an agreement with President Bush. And how could Obama not honor these promises? Um, well I hate to break it to you people, but when a new president comes in, he can enact a new policy so old promises really don’t chalk up to anything. Doesn’t everybody know this?
Posted in Israel, Israeli government and politics, israeli-palestinian conflict, middle east, Settlements, West Bank
Tagged Israel, Israeli Politics, israeli-palestinian conflict, Settlements, Shas, West Bank
I am still here with less than 2 weeks to go. Our wedding anniversary is this Thursday, and Eric asked me what I wanted. I jokingly told him I wanted a baby (although I wouldn’t mind going out to eat too). Who knows, he might decide to make an early appearance and be an anniversary present.
Besides obsessing about baby (which I think is a good thing), I wanted to breach a topics which has been in the Israeli and international news: the so-called Loyalty Oath espoused by Yisrael Beiteinu.
According to yesterday’s Haaretz“
“The ministerial legislative committee rejected on Sunday a bill stating that those who wish to retain Israeli citizenship would have to declare their loyalty to Israel as a Jewish state.
The bill, put forth by Yisrael Beiteinu’s MK David Rotem, stated that oath would include a pledge of loyalty to Israel as a Jewish, Zionist, and democratic state, to its emblems and values, and serving Israel either through military service or through any equivalent alternatives.”
Thank G-d. An initiative like this would have surely backfired. Of course I have no disillusions of Israeli Arabs ever accepting the Jewish, Zionist nature of this country. I think as far as they are concerned, they could accept Israel, but only as a secular State. And the anti-Israel declarations and demonstrations following the recent wars in Lebanon and Gaza are disturbing. Continue reading
The Obama Netanyahu confrontation has been on my mind, although I find it more appealing to write about the more mundane things. It’s hard for me to contribute new ideas to the political discourse when so much has been said before. It is also hard to wrap my brain around these scary, existential issues without feeling depressed and pessimistic.
The day-to-day personal experiences and encounters are easier to digest, take apart and relate to others. For me, it is easier to draw the extraordinary and profound from the ordinary and mundane than the reverse. Nevertheless I will make some time to write about the socio-political situation here. Just not yet…
As I was coming home from university today, I took the opportunity to look around my neighborhood and consider myself lucky. Although I am 10 minutes walk from the hustle and bustle of main street Kfar Saba (i.e. Weizman Street) my hood feels far removed from all of that balagan.
I live in one of several apartment buildings that encircle a small park/playground with some of the loveliest and tallest trees in Kfar Saba. During this time of year there is a certain tree that bursts into purple blossoms (I wish I knew what it was called!) so parts of the park are splashed with this vibrant color. In the mornings and afternoons you can hear clear, melodious bird calls. As afternoon becomes evening and on Saturdays, the park rings with voices of children and parents. One of the best parts about this apartment is that it affords a view of all of this local, quiet beauty so I never feel far from nature and community.
Whoever decided on the street where my apartment resides couldn’t have picked a better name. It’s Hashalom, and shalom, as you probably know, means peace.