Saturday, February 16, 2013

Netanyahu Exploring Unity Gov't Without Bennet and Lapid

The chances are not high, but every day that Naftali Bennett insists not giving up his strengthened alliance with Yair Lapid, the chances are that Netanyahu will not fold and will rather seek to form a perfect unity government with Labor.

The alliance between Bennett and Lapid can not be dismantled, so they will both remain out of the next government, an official close to the coalition talks is quoted by Yoav Yitzhak.

Ya'alon Denounces Bennett's Strangling of Netanyahu Forming Broad Coalition

Vice Premier, and favorite to become next Defense minister, denounced Staurday night Naftali Bennett'sd attempt to force netanayhu leaving the Haredim out of the coalition. Such a move would force Netanyahu to form a less broader coalition, or seek alliances with the parties on the left.

“Equality in the burden [of national service] is what unites Yesh Atid and Bayit Yehudi against the haredim? That sounds totally strange,” Ya’alon told Dana Weiss on Israel's Channel 2 'Meet the Press' program. “They have a treaty that does not reflect their basic interests.”

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Panels Poll: 3/4 Israelis Think Obama is Either "Pro-Palestinian" or Merely "Neutral".

Ahead of President Obama's highly anticipated Israel visit, only 14% of Israelis believe that Obama deserves to be called 'pro-Israel', a drop of 7 points since September 2012, according to a new Panels poll. This is Obama's lowest score on an Israeli survey since May 2011, writes Shmuel Rozner, based on his Israeli Opinion on Obama tracker. Three out of four Israelis view Obama as "pro-Palestinian" (29%) or merely "neutral" (a whopping 44%).  

Monday, February 11, 2013

SNL Skit Mocks Republican Support of Israel During Hagel Hearing

In an unaired skit cut from its Saturday night broadcast, NBC’s comedy show Saturday Night Live took aim at the full-throated support for Israel expressed by some Republican senators during the Senate Armed Services Committee confirmation hearing for Chuck Hagel.


The skit begins with a parodied South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham quoting a 1998 statement by Hagel that “the United States will always have an extremely close relationship with the state of Israel, but that’s not to say that in every single instance our interests and those of Israel will be identical.”  

Lapid in Debut Knesset Speech: 'This Isn't Democracy, This Is Anarchy.'

Yair Lapid's debut speech in the Knesset Plenum as a public leader sounded more like a state of the union, but the State of the union ain't so great, accrding to MK Yair Lapid, "there is a crisis of statesmanship." 

Citing recent event that shook up the society, such as Women segregation, Settler violence, Lapid said of the current State of Israel: "This isn't democracy, this is anarchy, rule of minority over majority."

Netanyahu , Bennett Meet for 2 Hour 'Straightforward' Meeting

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bayit Yehudi Chairman MK Naftali Bennett held their first meeting after a five year break up. The meeting, at the Prime minister's office in Tel Aviv,  lasted two hours.

Bennett refused to comment on the meeting and said only that he hopes the reporters and the entire nation have an excellent day. The Prime Minister's Office said that the meeting was "straightforward" and that the two discussed "all of the subjects on the agenda," and agreed to continue their talks in coming days.

'Americans See Netanyahu as the Churchill of Our Day'

“I hope [Obama] will reassure the people of Israel that there is absolutely no way that America will stand by and let Iran develop a nuclear weapon. He needs to say that loudly, clearly and without equivocation,” former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee told The Times of Israel, during a visit to Jerusalem.“It needs to be an absolute line in the sand so that there is no ambiguity and that there’s no doubt on the part of the Iranian government that there is a line that cannot be crossed.” 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

SHOCK!! Leading Rightist Website Describes Haaretz as 'A Generally Anti-Israeli Newspaper'

Really? Since when does a newspaper or a news site become anti-Israel, just due to the fact that it doesn't represent or agree to your political views?

Israel National News, originally Arutz 7, followed up with a report in Haaretz about Israel's National security Adviser, Yaakov Amidror's comments that "it is impossible to explain the subject of construction in the settlements" to supporters of Israel in the international community. As if Haaretz was just launched last night, INN describes Haaretz (without even bothering to post a link to the report): "Haaretz (pronounced huh-aah-retz), a generally anti-Israeli newspaper published in Israel."

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

In First Post-Election Prime Time Speech, Netanyahu Calls For Assemblance

New Knesset. New Faces. New Hopes. Same Politics.

Two weeks after the January 22 elections, the 120 members, 48 of them are new to the plenum, of Israel’s 19th Knesset were sworn in on Tuesday afternoon. The ceremony featured three songs by Singer Koby Aflalo, speeches by President Shimon Peres and Knesset veteran member, Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, who will serve as the temporary Knesset Speaker until a new government is sworn in, and the 120 Knesset members taking oath of office by swearing to uphold the laws of the State of Israel. 

Monday, February 4, 2013

VIDEO: Israel Owes Ed Koch a Great Debt of Gratitude

Ambassador Ido Aharoni, Consul General of Israel in New York, speaks at the late Mayor's funeral at Temple Emanu-El:

Netanyahu Changed FB Profile picture to TV Impersonator

To mark "doppelgänger" week on Facebook (Doppelgänger week is celebrated in the first week of February), Netanyahu has joined the plethora of Facebook users and replaced his image with that of a famous lookalike – in his case Mariano Idelman, a member of the Israeli satirical show Wonderful Country (Eretz Nehedret) whose impression of the prime minister as a bumbling and clumsy fool has won over Israeli audiences. via Jpost

Sunday, February 3, 2013

The Netanyahu-Lapid Alliance: Where it All Began

The picture above was taken in 2006 at the home of Hanoch Daum, an Israeli journalist and writer, who celebrated his birthday with the presence of two distinguished guests: Opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu and TV anchor and journalist Yair Lapid.

"At the end of a long night, at 2:30 in the morning, I sat in my chair and I felt some hope," writes Hanoch Daum at the start of his article in Yediot's 7 days magazine. "At that point, the thought that came to my mind was completely disengaged from reality: Benjamin Netanyahu and Yair Lapid will work one day together, and even handle it well... In my living room that long night something in the free atmosphere made me see that  these two have much in common. Much more on what they agree on than what to argue about," he writes.

VIDEO: Yair Lapid Celebrates Victory With 'A Little Help from My Friends'

Celebrating his party's victory in Netzer Sereni, a kibbutz in central Israel, Yair Lapid thanked campaign workers and thousand of supporters who helped Yesh Atid become the second-largest party in Israel.

“We won,” he shouted happily as the crowd cheered him on, Times of Israel reported.

During the event, Lapid took to the stage to play guitar and sing several songs, including The Beatles’ “With a Little Help from my Friends.” 

President Peres Tasks Netanyahu to Form New Gov't

President Shimon Peres formally called on Netanyahu to assemble a new coalition government following the January 22 general election, accepting the recommendations of 82 Knesset members.

"The task would be completed quickly, President Peres said. "The State of Israel needs political and economic stability in order to make the proper decisions regarding these issues, which are part of our daily existence. The public expects the government to be formed quickly so that it can roll up its sleeves and make an earnest effort on the many serious, urgent challenges ahead of us."