A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
November 2, 2008- Fear of Right Wing Violence and Election Developments
Today, while marking the anniversary of Rabin's assassination, the head of the Shin Bet stated there were right wing elements willing to assassinate again to achieve political goals. In a speech, President Peres lamented that fanatics, be they communists, fascists, or any other type seem to believe that killing is justified in pursuit of a higher goal; something Peres felt has lamentably become part of extremist culture in Israel. In the meantime, the situation in Hebron has become more confrontational than usual. The illegal Jewish homes destroyed by the army last week have been rebuilt, and Palestinians have been protesting.
There have been a number of political developments over the weekend in Israel. First, a new party has been formed that encompasses the national religious party and other right of center parties. These parties hope that their combined strength will be greater than their individual strengths. Meanwhile, Benny Begin has rejoined the Likud after and absence of nine years. Begin protested the Hebron Accord entered into by then Prime Minister Netanyahu, by resigning. The Labor party has dropped any plans for freezing their list and instead will now hold primaries.
The government's chief legal observer has ruled that peace talks can continue, despite the fact that there is a transitional government. This decision will pave the way for Olmert to try to advance talks on the Syrian front.
Friday night Israel was overwhelmed by the controversial decision of the Israeli television to pull the recorded interview with Rabin's assassin, Yigal Amir. Opponents claimed it was wrong to allow Amir to have any forum whatsoever. Those who supported the interview claim that Israeli television has interviewed the worst enemies of Israel, why should we not understand what was behind Amir's actions. Furthermore, supporters of the interview claim there is much we do not know about the circumstances surrounding the assassination, and it's the responsibility of the media to try to learn more.
Another controversy developed today over the remarks made to a closed religious audience, by Meir Porush, who is running for Mayor of Jerusalem. In his speech, which was in Yiddish, Porush predicted that within a decade the ultra-orthodox would control all the major cities in Israel.