Archive: Mar 2006

Tuesday, did the Israeli electorate determine that Zionism is no longer relevant? The chattering class's repeated characterization of this week's elections as "post-Zionist," prompted me to return to the sources. To Theodor Herzl. Would Herzl have understood the problems and dangers plaguing Israel today? How would the father of modern Zionism deal with the current challenges facing the Jewish people?   I found the answers in an essay on Herzl written in 1938 by Profe…
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Sunday evening Kadima Education Minister Meir Sheetrit extolled Kadima's "uniqueness" as the one Israeli party which "has disengaged from all ideology."  Sheetrit proudly proclaimed: "We don't have the baggage of the heritage of Ze'ev Jabotinsky or Berl Katzenelson [the ideological founding fathers of Likud and Labor] on our back. We are looking only to the future."  When the polls close this evening, the most non-deliberative election campaign…
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On the eve of Israel's elections, Israelis should be deeply concerned about the state of our relations with the United States.  Last week the London Review of Books published a long article under the heading "The Israel Lobby." The article was authored by two prominent American international relations and political science professors: Stephen Walt, the academic dean at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and John Mearsheimer from the University of Chicago.  Walt an…
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On the eve of the Knesset elections, Israel faces multiple challenges. Hamas, in appointing technocrats and terrorists to run its new government is showing that it is possible to learn from the Nazi model of governance. Even genocidal mass murderers who seduce their societies with delusions of racial and religious supremacy can receive international acclaim if they make the trains run on time.  Israel's political spectrum is divided between the Left, represented by Kadima and the Right…
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If a doctor treated a breast cancer patient by amputating her big toe, he would doubtlessly be kicked out of medicine. Medical quackery is punished today. Sadly, the same cannot necessarily be said of public policy malpractice. Last Wednesday the US suffered a predictable diplomatic defeat. The UN General Assembly approved the establishment of a new human rights council to replace the existing human rights commission. The lopsided vote was similarly preordained: 170 supported the move and f…
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Israel's election campaign presents an unparalleled challenge to Israelis on both the Right and the Left who care about the issues challenging the country. Today, not only do they have to defend what they believe, they also have to defend their right to believe anything.  Last Friday, Makor Rishon published an in-depth report on the growing isolation and demonization of the religious Zionist camp. Hebrew University sociologist Tamar Elor explained that the front running Kadima Part…
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US President George W. Bush found himself immersed last week in a political crisis of his own making. For the first time in his presidency, Americans told pollsters that they trust the Democrats more than the president on issues of national security. There is an Israel angle to Bush's misfortunes. In fact, the nature of the mess in which Bush recently inserted himself explains a great deal about the nature of Israel's relationship with America. It also shows how that relationship is harm…
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This week, Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu took a vital step towards reinvigorating Israel's democratic system. By forcing the Likud's Central Committee members to transfer their power to select the party's Knesset candidate slate to the rank and file membership of the party, Netanyahu brought about a change which optimally will make Likud Knesset members directly responsible to more than 100,000 voters rather than to 2,500 party officials.  It makes sense that a politician who…
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