26 June 2017

Benjamin Netanyahu at his best: zigging and zagging


Whatever they say about Bibi, in one aspect of his behavior he is consistent: he will switch direction at the merest sign of trouble for his ruling coalition, i.e. to his seat of power.

His sudden change of heart regarding the plan to establish a pluralistic prayer pavilion at Jerusalem’s Western Wall is just another example of his all consuming passion for that chair.
The cabinet on Sunday suspended a government-approved plan to establish a pluralistic prayer pavilion at Jerusalem’s Western Wall, following calls by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ultra-Orthodox coalition allies to scrap the deal. The announcement was swiftly condemned by Israel’s Reform Movement and the Jewish Agency.
But, Bibi being Bibi, even this decision was half-hearted:
In a statement, the Prime Minister’s Office said that Netanyahu instructed Cabinet Secretary Tzachi Braverman and Likud Minister Tzachi Hanegbi to formulate a new plan for the site.

It also said construction work on the southern edge of the Western Wall plaza — where the pluralistic prayer pavilion was slated to be built — would continue uninterrupted.
Just in case Bibi detects that the damage caused by his sudden about-turn might outweigh the threat of not turning about. But of course.

Still, I tend to think that the ToI headline on David Horovitz' op-ed is a bit of exaggeration:

Netanyahu to millions of Jews: We don’t really want you

First of all, I seriously doubt that there are literally millions of conservative and reform Jews hurt by this zigzag. Besides, there are more young American Jews being indoctrinated by J-Street, JVP and extreme left - the writing is on the wall*. Not that the two cases are completely unrelated.

As a side note: I would dare guess that the case of pluralistic prayer pavilion is quite closely related to the recent brouhaha with the work performed on the railroad during Shabbat. Political horse trading in its typical naked glory.

Yep. As it was said, politicians and diapers should both be changed regularly, and for the same reason.

Quite the time.

(*) This statement of mine must be amended. Apparently the report used and several other articles using it as a base for alarm were quite significantly exaggerated. Not that there isn't a reason to worry, but on the other hand panic doesn't help too. Here it is:

Vast majority’ of Jewish students are connected to Israel, insists Brandeis prof

Hat tip: Elise Ronan.