So, it’s a year since the general election that resulted in the current Israeli government. Are Israelis happy with the outcome? How would they vote today?
If you cast your mind back a year, the now-ruling Likud didn’t actually “win” the election — a fact the whole world seems to have forgotten. The largest party was Kadima, which received 28 of the Knesset’s 120 mandates. Likud received 27, but given that, it was able to pull together a working coalition led the government. If new elections were held now, Likud could be confident of a clear win. According to a new Haaretz-Dialog poll, partly published here, Likud would now return to the Knesset with 35 mandates, while Kadima’s head-count would drop to 26.
Showing, apparently, the audacity to hate, Hamas are still producing virulently antisemitic children’s cartoons. In the face of crass hypocritical vitriol that is geopolitically and socially destructive the Daily Show had no real option but to set Dr. Bagelman (erstwhile producer of Jewby Doo) on to introduce them.
The whole sequence is unbelievable but the cartoons are the least believable and the least funny. Watch the sequence here.
Well, there go my plans of drinking vodka in St. Petersburg this month with Natan Sharansky and the rest of the Jewish Agency’s Board of Governors…The quasi-governmental body in charge of Jewish immigration to Israel announced yesterday that its plans to hold one of its board meetings in the canal-lined city (Peter the Great’s window to the West) has been canceled only three-weeks before it was to take place. The problem, according to Jewish Agency officials anonymously quoted in various news sources, is that the Russians suddenly balked at the idea of an international Jewish meeting. They said the Agency only has legal status as a local NGO.
But I suspected, and Anshel Pfeffer of Haaretz is the first to really confirm, that the real problem goes by the name of Leonid Nevzlin.
Much of the juiciest material contained in “Game Change”, the new dishy chronicle of the 2008 election by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, has already made it’s way into the media. Elizabeth Edwards was prone to angry outbursts, Sarah Palin was an ignoramus, and Bill Clinton was … well, Bill Clinton, the lovable loudmouthed and inappropriate Bubba. For all the revelations though — perhaps with the exception of the surprisingly dysfunctional Edwards family — there was very little in the portraits that didn’t just confirm what most people already suspected about these characters.
As I was reading — I couldn’t help it! — I came across one more of these moments where the public persona is exactly what you would imagine behind the scenes. This scene did not get much publicity, but is worth transcribing in full. It involves Palin’s breakdown of sorts, in the days leading up to the vice presidential debate, and Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew. John McCain’s campaign manager, Steve Schmidt, had asked Lieberman to visit Palin and buck her up at a moment when her debate prep was going disastrously (For one thing, she kept calling her opponent, “Senator O’Biden” for some inexplicable reason):
The news that Boerum Hill’s nouveau deli Mile End finally opened Monday warmed the hearts of Montreal expats — like me — across the tri-state area. Founded by a pair of 20-something Montreal transplants, Mile End will serve haimish old country food like smoked meat (house-cured here), karnatzel (thin Romanian sausage sticks) and Montreal-style sour pickles.
The place is named for a north downtown Montreal neighborhood where Eastern European Jewish immigrants settled in the first half of the 20th century. Now home to a diverse ethnic mix, Mile End has become the city’s trendiest quartier; The New York Times travel section chronicled its ascent last weekend.