Posted inInformed Comment

Tens of Thousands of Israelis Demonstrate against Netanyahu, Demand Hostage Exchange Deal, New Elections

Ann Arbor (Informed Comment) – The Israeli newspaper Arab 48 reports that some 100,000 Israelis rallied Saturday night against the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv and other cities, including Jerusalem, Beersheba and Haifa. The protesters were responding in part to dueling news releases about the possibility of a breakthrough in indirect […]

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Zionism’s Expired Shelf-Life: Why Naomi Klein is right that it has become Pharaoh

Oakland, Ca. (Special to Informed Comment; Feature) – Previously I’ve argued that Zionism has run its course as a political movement, and accomplished its goal: The creation of a viable Jewish nation-state. I’ve also argued that Zionism under Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu (Bibi) has become a driving force in nurturing global anti-Semitism. He has perverted […]

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The Ideological Coup: How Far Right Kahanist Extremists Became the Face of Israel

( Middle East Monitor ) – Throughout history, fringe religious Zionist parties have had limited success in achieving the kind of electoral victories that would allow them an actual share in the country’s political decision-making. The impressive number of 17 seats won by Israel’s extremist religious party, Shas, in the 1999 election was a watershed […]

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Israel on the Brink as Ultra-Orthodox Exemption from Military Service is Set to End

Oakland, Ca. (Special to Informed Comment; Featured) – On March 29, the Israeli Supreme Court ordered the government to stop subsidizing the academies and yeshivas (seminaries), whose students have been exempted from military service since Israel’s founding. This move, brought by Attorney-General Gali Baharav-Miara, was prompted by the expiration of prior government actions to maintain […]

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Could the Israeli Supreme Court’s decree that ultra-Orthodox be Conscripted bring Down Netanyahu?

Ann Arbor (Informed Comment) – The Israeli newspaper Arab 48 reports on the conscription crisis that may cause the Netanyahu government to fall and tear Israeli society apart. The Israeli Supreme Court issued the ruling on Thursday evening, which freezes — as of April — the funds for ultra-Orthodox Jewish schools, the students of which […]

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Israel’s Army Exemptions for the ultra-Orthodox: A Jewish State divided over the Jewish Religion

By Michael Brenner, American University | – Just when you think nothing can surprise you anymore in Israeli politics, someone always comes along with a new twist. This time it was Yitzhak Yosef, one of Israel’s two chief rabbis. In response to debates over whether ultra-Orthodox Jews should be required to serve in the military, […]