Archive for the ‘Israel’ Category

The Impact of the Elections on the Israeli Political system

This election campaign is one of the most fascinating and most important that I have ever witnessed. Two aspects of this political campaign stand out—at least to me. The first is that this round of ballotting is not only about the public deciding which parties should be in the next government, even more importantly, this […]

The Israeli Budget: Yes, You Can Fool All the People All the Time

  To most people, there is nothing more boring than reading a budget or listening to a budget debate.   That is unfortunate because national budgets can be endlessly fascinating. They are probably the best objective mirror a country can produce about where it is at, what its priorities are, where it wants to go, […]

The New Diplomacy in the New Middle East

I have long preached that major economic, social, political and military events do not just happen. They are invariably the product of processes that have been underway for a very long time.   That presumption is certainly true for all the events we have been witnessing in the Middle East during the past few years. […]

An Exchange of Ideas

I received this response to my letter to Rabbi Dow Marmur (posted previously) from Howard Adelman, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at York University. My response follows immediately afterwards.   Values and Israeli Society by Howard Adelman Just before Yom Kippur, Rabbi Dow Marmur forwarded me a missive sent to him by Jim Lederer (see attached) […]

Israel’s National Values: A Letter to Rabbi Dow Marmur

Dear Dow,   I am writing you this letter out of sheer frustration and because you are one of the few people I know who is capable of understanding what I am talking about. I am certain that what I have to say would never be published in a North American journal. So, if you […]

ISIS—Some Stuff Obama Didn’t Mention

The Saudis, the Gulf States, the rest of the Arab world, and anyone with even a moderate acquaintance with Arab history and culture should have known better. Nonetheless, all claim to have been caught by surprise by the appearance of ISIS, al Qaeda and the myriad of other violent Islamic political groups that have grabbed […]

The Irrelevance of the Left in Israeli Policy-Making

What ever became of the rational, activist, Jewish left? Recently, I have been reading a great many of the writings by authors who claim to be representatives of what is nowadays being euphemistically called “Progressive” or “liberal” Diaspora Jewry. By any objective measure, it is neither progressive nor liberal in its outlook. It has become […]

The Israeli-Hamas Cease-Fire Negotiations: Real-Time Middle Eastern Politicking that American can Learn From

    The political and diplomatic negotiations leading up to the announcement of each Israeli-Hamas cease-fire were among the most fascinating and revealing political exercises in recent memory.   However, to paraphrase a man much wiser than me, never in the course of human endeavour has so much nonsense, with so few insights, been said […]

The Israeli-Hamas War–An Interim Assessment

  Israel is now at a crossroads in its war with Hamas. If there is no cease-fire by the time that the IDF finishes demolishing the tunnels that it has found leading into Israel (expected to take about five more days unless new tunnels are found), the government will have to take one of three […]

No Israeli-Hamas Cease-Fire Is In The Offing

    A search is underway to find a mediator capable of arranging a cease-fire between Israel and Gaza. Hamas is reported by everyone in the know to be desperately seeking a suitable candidate. However, all the names mentioned so far have been considered unacceptable by either the Israelis or the Gazans.   I use […]