Tuesday, April 12, 2016

How Netanyahu's Letting the Far-right Redefine Israel’s Character

Brian Reeves, haaretz.com

Image from article, with caption: Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a Knesset plenum, Jerusalem, March 7, 2016.

What do the following appointments to high office in Israel have in common: a minister of justice who tries to weaken the Israeli Supreme Court, a minister of culture who schemes to defund and devalue cultural institutions, and a consular-general who seeks to strengthen Diaspora relations by spreading radical right doctrine?
Aside from the fact that they were all appointed by Prime Minister Netanyahu, either in the context of a coalition-forming process or as a personal choice, one could say they smack a bit Orwellian. ...
As for newly nominated ex-settler leader Dani Dayan to serve as the envoy in New York, it took little time before he voiced his explicit intention to sell his pro-settlements, anti-two-state solution views to the largely liberal American Jewish public and lobbed an early insult at J Street. That [sic] will also know that only last month he was rejected by the Brazilian government when Netanyahu tried to install him as ambassador there. ...
Last but not least is Ran Baratz, Netanyahu’s personal pick as candidate for Israel’s Communications Chief.
Soon after his nomination, it emerged that this dismissed Hebrew University professor had a penchant for taking to social media to voraciously insult U.S. Secretary of State Kerry and President Rivlin, before later accusing President Obama of anti-Semitism. So much for the person slated to head Israel’s public diplomacy and media outreach. Now two months later, Netanyahu has still not rescinded Baratz’s candidacy, despite opposition from within his own party. ...

No comments: