Israelis Enjoy Plenty of Election Choices Voting Under Sunny Skies in Holy Land

'King Bibi' Vies With Pro-Pot and Ultra-Orthodox Parties

Walk in the Park: Israelis had a plethora of choices as 32 parties ran in national elections. After voting, many enjoyed the winter sunshine on a national holiday.
getty images
Walk in the Park: Israelis had a plethora of choices as 32 parties ran in national elections. After voting, many enjoyed the winter sunshine on a national holiday.

By Reuters

Published January 22, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

Yehudit Shimshi had fire in her eyes after she voted in a leafy Israeli suburb on Tuesday, but resignation in her voice.

Her hope for an end to the “reign” of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was forlorn, she admitted.

“There is a king sitting on the throne in Israel and I want to dethrone him,” the 58-year-old retired elementary school teacher said, her gaze intense. “But it looks like that won’t happen,” she quickly added, looking away.

Shimshi did not say how she voted on the balmy winter morning in Maccabim, which lies so close to the occupied West Bank that Muslim calls to prayer from a Palestinian village sometimes intrude on music pouring from Israeli joggers’ earphones.

But she said social and economic issues had been paramount for her in an election campaign that has largely ignored the frozen Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Opinion polls have signalled that the right-wing Netanyahu, who promises a “strong Israel” after uprisings in the Arab world and Iran’s nuclear programme raised many Israelis’ security fears, will win a third term.

“There are some scary things out there in the world and Bibi has an eye on them,” said Tahg Adler, 36, a recruiting manager from the central city of Modi’in, using Netanyahu’s nickname.

But the man the media called “King Bibi” after he expanded his government last May into a short-lived “grand coalition”, has watched his lead narrow in the polls in recent weeks.

Jewish Home, a far-right party led by high-tech millionaire Naftali Bennett, has been drawing Netanyahu’s traditional supporters away from the prime minister’s Likud party, according to the surveys.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • "When it comes to Brenda Turtle, I ask you: What do you expect of a woman repressed all her life who suddenly finds herself free to explore? We can sit and pass judgment, especially when many of us just simply “got over” own sexual repression. But we are obliged to at least acknowledge that this problem is very, very real, and that complete gender segregation breeds sexual repression and unhealthy attitudes toward female sexuality."
  • "Everybody is proud of the resistance. No matter how many people, including myself, disapprove of or even hate Hamas and its ideology, every single person in Gaza is proud of the resistance." Part 2 of Walid Abuzaid's on-the-ground account of life in #Gaza:
  • After years in storage, Toronto’s iconic red-and-white "Sam the Record Man" sign, complete with spinning discs, will return to public view near its original downtown perch. The sign came to symbolize one of Canada’s most storied and successful Jewish family businesses.
  • Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery?
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: 10,000 Israel supporters gathered for a solidarity rally near the United Nations in New York yesterday.
  • Step into the Iron Dome with Tuvia Tenenbom.
  • What do you think of Wonder Woman's new look?
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • Is boredom un-Jewish?
  • Let's face it: there's really only one Katz's Delicatessen.
  • "Dear Diaspora Jews, I’m sorry to break it to you, but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that every Jew is intrinsically part of the Israeli state and that Jews are also intrinsically separate from, and therefore not responsible for, the actions of the Israeli state." Do you agree?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.