Orly Halpern


Gaza Dispatches: Violence Down, But Crises Loom

By Orly Halpern

The street fighting in Gaza abated last week, but Hamas and Fatah are still battling it out online and over the airwaves for the hearts and minds of Palestinians. “There are two stories: the Fatah story and the Hamas story,” said Nasser Laham, the frazzled chief editor of the independent Ma’an Network and News Agency. “Each one wants us to take their story and abandon the facts.”Read More


Burg’s Comments in Interview Make Waves

By Orly Halpern

A stalwart of Zionism caused an ideological earthquake last week when he stated that defining the State of Israel as Jewish is the key to its end. In an interview published in Ha’aretz, Avraham Burg, a former head of the Jewish Agency for Israel and a former Knesset speaker, argued that Israeli society has elements of German fascism, that the Law of Return should be reconsidered and that Israelis who are able to obtain foreign passports should do so.Read More


Arab Vote Decisive in Labor Election

By Orly Halpern

In the struggle for the leadership of Israel’s oldest political party, it was the non-Zionists and the pioneers who determined the outcome. The Arab and kibbutz vote in the Labor Party primary handed the chairmanship to Ehud Barak, who defeated Ami Ayalon Tuesday, 51.3% to 47.7%.Read More


Ousted, Peretz Could Emerge Kingmaker

By Orly Halpern

No matter who wins the upcoming runoff between Ehud Barak and Ami Ayalon, this much is clear: Defense Minister Amir Peretz is out as Labor Party chairman — and the leader of Israel’s venerable social democratic movement will once again be an Ashkenazic general.Read More


Amid Rockets and Civil War in Gaza, Israelis Sour on Peace Prospects

By Orly Halpern

Israeli leaders are now scrambling for a strategy to deal with the potential civil war erupting in the Palestinian territories and Hamas rocket attacks on the southern town of Sderot. But even before the latest round of violence, Israeli public opinion was souring on the land-for-peace formula, with Israelis concluding that the Palestinians are not prepared to end the conflict, according to a newly released poll.Read More






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  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
  • Why are peace activists getting beat up in Tel Aviv? http://jd.fo/s4YsG
  • Backstreet's...not back.
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