Thank you to the outgoing prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, for your many years of service, replete with achievements, for the sake of the State of Israel. As prime minister, you acted throughout many years to embolden Israel’s political, security and economic strength.
Benjamin and Sara Netanyahu, over the years we have not always agreed, but we have both sacrificed much on a personal level in order to serve our people, the people of Israel. Expressing gratitude is a fundamental principle in Judaism. This is the time for the people to say to you: thank you.
The State of Israel is not “just another country”. It is the dream of generations of Jews - from Marrakesh to Budapest, from Baghdad to San Francisco - a dream we merited to see realized every day before our very eyes. Each generation has its own challenges, and out of each generation comes the leaders that can overcome them.
Twice in history, we have lost our national home precisely because the leaders of the generation were not able to sit with one another and compromise. Each was right, yet with all their being right, they burned the house down on top of us. I am proud of the ability to sit together with people with very different views from my own.
This time, at the decisive moment, we have taken responsibility. We understood that we have to safeguard our home. To continue on in this way - more elections, more hatred, and more vitriolic posts on Facebook - is just not an option. Therefore, we stopped the train, a moment before it barrelled into the abyss.
My fellow members of Knesset, in light of the ongoing turbulent debate, the people are looking to the House. Let us maintain respectful debate. I understand those for whom today is difficult, but friends, this is not a day of mourning. (Compare this to the last Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Knesset as Prime minister, this is a well-balanced, respectful presentation made by leader who wants to stop internal bickering and move the country forward. Only time will tell, if he succeeds!)
Food for Thought. by Steven Shamrak
Israel is the Jewish Democratic state, reborn due to the Zionist aspirations of many generations of Jews behind its creation! It is not autocracy or a one man dictatorship! There is a reason why many supporters of the Likud party did not even vote during the last election. Having the 5th election would produce the same inconclusive results! Hopefully, change of the leadership and return to its original Zionist values will help the Likud party regain its political leadership and win the next election. It must be done as soon as possible!
Israel's Self-Destructive Judicial Idiocracy!
Supreme Court of Israel overturned a 2015 Finance Committee decision to deny tax exempt status to Christian Messianic “Jewish” organization Yachad.
The so-called family reunification law, which prohibits Palestinians who marry Israelis from gaining Israeli citizenship, is set to expire in the coming weeks. Likud and the other opposition parties apparently played hardball with Israel’s new government, refusing to support a security-focused bill that they likely would have backed had they been in the governing coalition. The new coalition needs the support of Likud opposition MKs to pass the family reunification ordinance because it is opposed by Ra'am.
Enemies Within and Outside!
Following his rise to notoriety during the most recent war in Gaza, Yussuf Al-Baz, has continued to incite against Jews and the State of Israel. Al-Baz was arrested and charged with media incitement, and police are expected to request the extension of his remand. The Al-Omri mosque, where Al-Baz is imam, was a base of incitement during the Guardian of the Walls campaign, encouraging Lod’s Arabs to commit violent acts and challenge the rule of law. (Enemies of Israel reside not just in Gaza or Ramallah, but in the rest of Israel!)
A Palestinian woman of 28 tried to run down soldiers at the Hizme checkpoint north of Jerusalem last Wednesday. When she jumped out of her car brandishing a knife, the soldiers opened fire. She was shot dead. The woman had a doctorate in mental health from Jordan University. She left a message saying she did not expect to survive. (Studies have shown terrorists are usually well educated – poor are more interested in money and survival.)
Egypt has called off Palestinian reconciliation talks amid a growing dispute between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas over Gaza reconstruction and other issues. (Hamas and Fatah would kill each other more vigorously if not for commonly shared hate for Israel.)
Have Fire Balloons Ended Ceasefire?
Israel’s Defense Forces launched a counterattack into Gaza after Hamas initiated balloon attacks - sending incendiary devices floating into southern Israel, which sparked 20 fires. The IDF noted that its retaliatory attacks hit targets that housed Hamas operatives in Khan Yunis and Gaza City. These were the first strikes by Israel into Gaza since Naftali Bennett became the new prime minister just two days before. (Previous government of Israel usually ignored incendiary balloons attacks! It appeared that neither side wants to reopen last month’s war.)
Several MIM-104 Patriot air defense batteries have been pulled out of Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. At least one Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system was also withdrawn from Saudi Arabia along with fighter squadrons, and hundreds of troops manning the systems are being withdrawn.
A survey shows 53% of so-called Palestinians believe Hamas is 'most deserving of representing and leading the Palestinian people' and 77% believe the terror group won the recent war with Israel. Abbas faces a major crisis of legitimacy among Palestinians after calling off the first elections in 15 years in April. Around two-thirds of Palestinians opposed his decision to call off the vote. At the time, it appeared Fatah would suffer another humiliating defeat to Hamas. (President Mahmoud Abbas is too 'moderate' for the Jew-hating enemy population!)
Jerusalem native shocked to find out that according to her renewed UK passport, her actual place of birth was “Occupied Palestine.” The ‘incident’ is likely part of a new policy by the British government!
Iran has made 6.5 kg (14 lb) of uranium enriched to up to 60%, a move that would take the uranium much closer to the 90% suitable for a nuclear bomb. The country had also produced 108 kg of uranium enriched to 20% purity. (No sanctions or deal will be able stop the Iranian nuclear bomb program - only Israel can!)
Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised then-President Donald Trump in 2020 that Israel won’t apply sovereignty in Judea and Samaria for the next few years. (Instead of using the opportunity Bibi missed an opportunity to resume the process of reuniting Jewish land!)
Quote of the Week:
“It is inconceivable that Hamas is not designated around the world as a war criminal, and it is vitally important to apply this designation! When IDF soldiers, our children, are facing the International Criminal Court, the world should understand that the real war criminals are hiding in Gaza, behind civilian populations.” - President of Israel Reuven Rivlin
by Douglas Altabef
Israeli Arab willingness to riot was not due to desperation, but a brazenness born out of coddling and accommodation! Do you know when the seed of the Lod riots was planted?
It was the decision many years ago when the government decided that Arabs who did not want an Israeli flag on their license plates could dispense with it.
What a shockingly symbolic capitulation this was. How can you have two sets of laws in one society and expect to maintain social cohesion?
If it seems like a quantum leap from dual license plates to refraining from singing Hatikvah because it is "insensitive".
It is difficult to maintain civic consensus in any society; it is all the more difficult to do so in Israel, where there are constituent elements with very different group sensibilities, values and norms.
Jews, even Israeli Jews, are, on a certain level, embarrassed to exercise power. We are by nature seekers of compromise and accommodation; and we understandably assume that others would also want to be treated in the same way.
But, with the best of intentions, this is a conceit. It does not take into account that there might be others who do not value these priorities, that do not operate according to the same existential owner’s manual.
It is bad enough not to understand this, but it is far worse to diminish and denigrate your own people in a misguided effort to placate others. The unfortunate, but unmistakable message being sent by Israeli authorities is that we are not resolute, as we are not even firmly committed to Israel as a Jewish state.
A resolute Israel would say, as it once did, look this is a Jewish state. That's the way it is. You have complete civil rights, you are welcome to be here, but "here" is a Jewish state. If that is problematic for you, there are dozens of other states that are either Muslim or Christian that you can go to.
There have been new and recent efforts to integrate Israeli Arab citizens more fully into Israeli society. The starting point for these recent endeavours has been the explicit Arab acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state. Only with this recognition and acceptance can a real integration process begin.
We are in perilous times. Far more unnerving than the attacks from Hamastan, the riots in such mixed cities as Lod, Akko and Jaffa exposed the simmering fault lines in our society.
Times change, but human nature does not. Only by asserting our sovereignty through a requirement of one Law for all can we maintain the kind of social cohesion that will allow us to address, from strength, our internal divisions.