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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s resounding victory this week defied poll after poll, most of which had him trailing by as many as four points before Election Day.
Zionist Union, the political party leading the Israeli left in its aspirations to unseat Netanyahu, had larger campaign funds than the prime minister’s Likud Party, received a thinly veiled endorsement from the Obama administration, and was favored by many in the Israeli media. And yet they lost by a large margin.
In the dramatic weeks leading up to the elections, those interested in seeing Netanyahu’s reign come to an end believed that the economy would be his Achilles’ heel. Netanyahu has led during a time when the disparity between Israel’s rich and poor has grown. He hasn’t been able to bring down the rising cost of living or to provide the middle class with higher wages.
And so the media predicted Netanyahu’s political demise. Yet, the difficult financial state many Israelis find themselves in did not bring Netanyahu down as thought, but turned out to be a secondary concern. Security proved once again to be the primary issue for a majority of Israeli voters.
U.S. President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu have, to say the least, a difficult relationship, a point not lost on Israeli voters. However, this may have actually galvanized the Israeli public behind their leader, who seen as a man who won’t back down from speaking the truth about the deal the U.S. is forging with Iran.
On the Palestinian front, Israelis backed Netanyahu as he faces growing international pressure to offer concessions to a Palestinian leadership viewed by voters as interested in anything but peace. And now that Netanyahu will lead Israel’s next government, the Israelis who voted for him can look forward to the security and leadership his term promises.
- Ami FarkasComments (2) »
Friday, March 20th, 2015 at 12:23 PM | Stand For Israel
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Friday, March 20th, 2015 at 8:53 AM | Stand For Israel
In recent speeches, Rabbi Eckstein and Prime Minister Netanyahu both shared the same beliefs on the futures of Israel and America’s.Comments (1) »
Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 at 3:34 PM | Stand For Israel
As Israelis went to the polls yesterday, the media (in Israel, and around the world) prepared for a photo-finish result that might take weeks to sort out. However, after Israelis flocked to the polls in record numbers, The Times of Israel reports that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has scored a decisive victory and will remain the Jewish state’s leader:
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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party was the clear winner in Tuesday’s election, a near-final tally showed early Wednesday morning, defeating the Zionist Union by a margin of some six seats.
That margin was far more decisive than TV exit polls had predicted when polling booths closed at 10 p.m. on Tuesday. All three TV polls had put Likud and Zionist Union neck-and-neck at 27 seats, albeit with Netanyahu better-placed to form a coalition.
On the basis of those TV polls, Netanyahu hailed a Likud victory, though Herzog initially refused to concede. As counting proceeded through the night, however, the Likud opened a growing margin of victory.
By 6 a.m., with some 99% of votes counted, the Central Elections Committee was indicating a dramatic victory for Netanyahu, with the Likud heading for 30 seats, compared to Zionist Union’s 24 seats …
As the exit poll results were announced on the nation’s three major TV stations, celebrations erupted at Likud’s campaign headquarters in Tel Aviv. “Against all odds we obtained a great victory for the Likud,” Netanyahu told the gathering. “Now we must form a strong and stable government that will ensure Israel’s security and welfare,” he added …
Netanyahu called the result a “great victory for the Likud. A major victory for the people of Israel.”
Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 at 8:48 AM | Stand For Israel
Last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a historic speech to Congress. Writing at Real Clear Politics, Belladonna Rogers points out the ways in which Netanyahu’s speech invoked another historical address by another world leader facing down an evil regime, one given by Winston Churchill in 1941:
If Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sounded Churchillian in his speech to the Congress on Tuesday, one reason is that he echoed several of the most memorable phrases in Winston Churchill’s 1941 address to the Canadian House of Commons, a speech still celebrated by Canadians as rallying their nation at a crucial moment in World War II.
Those phrases deserve attention because of the message they convey to the United States in 2015. Alas, most members of Congress are insufficiently aware of one of the greatest speeches of the 20th century to have taken notice. A line that should have had them on their feet left them in their seats.
Only three weeks after the Dec. 7 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor had drawn the United States into World War II, the British prime minister braved the cold and the perils of wartime travel to visit Washington to speak to the Congress on Dec. 26. He then left for Canada.
His speech there contains two lines that have become part of the Churchill canon …
The second notable line in Churchill’s address concerned the Nazi conquest of four sovereign nations — Norway, Denmark, Holland, and Belgium — followed by the “great French catastrophe” when the French army collapsed. Churchill proclaimed that if France had remained loyal to Britain, the two allies might have already won the war. Then he said this:
When I warned them that Britain would fight on alone whatever they did, their generals told their prime minister and his divided cabinet, “In three weeks England will have her neck wrung like a chicken.” Some chicken; some neck.
The Canadian Parliament responded with a spontaneous burst of laughter and sustained applause.
In Natanyahu’s address to Congress, he…Read More » Comments (21) »
Monday, March 9th, 2015 at 8:49 AM | Belladonna Rogers
If you watched Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to Congress this week, you noticed that he ended the speech with a reference to Moses’ message to the Jewish people to “be strong and resolute, neither fear nor dread them.” As he did this, Netanyahu pointed out the sculpted image of Moses hanging over the congressional chamber. Yediot Achronot provides the interesting story of the marble relief of the biblical figure that overlooks the American legislature:
While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu referenced several cultural, political, and historical figures throughout his highly-anticipated speech to Congress on Tuesday March 3 – including Harry S. Truman, Queen Esther, Robert Frost, and Elie Wiesel – he concluded his historical address with the biblical figure of the prophet Moses.
The Israeli prime minister did not just mention Moses in passing, he also pointed to the image of Moses in the form of white Vermont marble relief, hanging over the gallery doors overlooking the lawmakers in the House of Representatives Chamber.
It was probably the first time that the marble relief portrait of Moses hanging in the House Chamber ever received such public acknowledgement …
The image of Moses and other leaders of civilizations and societies have been hanging in the chamber for 65 years. Scholars from the University of Pennsylvania and the Columbia Historical Society of Washington DC chose the subjects with the help of authoritative members of the Library of Congress over six decades ago.
A special committee of five Members of the House of Representatives and the Architect of the Capitol approved the selection, and the reliefs were installed when the House Chamber was remodeled from 1949-1950.
Prime Minister Netanyahu at the end of his speech quoted Moses from the Book of Deuteronomy, stating in Hebrew, “Be strong and resolute, neither fear nor dread them,” which were the leader’s parting words to the Israelites before they entered…Read More » Comments (52) »
Friday, March 6th, 2015 at 8:48 AM | Stand For Israel
Since Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress on Tuesday, much has been written about the address. One of the more insightful pieces we’ve read so far is Alan Dershowitz’s analysis at The Algemeiner, where he takes a close look at exactly what the Israeli prime minister proposed regarding the Iranian nuclear threat:
I was in the House gallery when Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a logical and compelling critique of the deal now on the table regarding Iran’s ambitions to obtain nuclear weapons. He laid out a new fact-based proposal that has shifted the burden of persuasion to the White House.
His new proposal is that “If the world powers are not prepared to insist that Iran change its behavior before a deal is signed, at the very least they should insist that Iran change its behavior before a deal expires.” His argument is that without such a precondition, the ten-year sunset provision paves, rather than blocks, the way to an Iranian nuclear arsenal, even if Iran were to continue to export terrorism, to bully nations in the region and to call for the extermination of Israel.
With logic that seems unassailable, Netanyahu has said that the alternative to this bad deal is not war, but rather “a better deal that Israel and its neighbors might not like, but which we could live with, literally.” Netanyahu then outlined his condition for a better deal: namely that before the sun is allowed to set on prohibiting Iran from developing nuclear weapons, the mullahs must first meet three conditions: stop exporting terrorism, stop intruding in the affairs of other countries, and stop threatening the existence of Israel.
If the mullahs reject these three reasonable conditions, it will demonstrate that they have no real interest in joining the international community and abiding by its rules. If they accept these conditions, then the sunset provision will not kick in automatically but will require that Iran demonstrate a willingness to play by the rules, before the rules allow it…Read More » Comments (15) »
Thursday, March 5th, 2015 at 8:32 AM | Stand for Israel
In the wake of Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress yesterday, The Times of Israel’s David Horovitz writes that the prime minister gave the speech of his life in a bid to thwart “a very bad deal” with Iran:
It was widely suggested, ahead of Benjamin Netanyahu’s spectacularly controversial address to Congress on Tuesday, that the prime minister would have to deliver the speech of his life in order to justify the damage he would inevitably be causing to relations between his government and the Obama Administration. In the event, Netanyahu did deliver the speech of his life …
He began, dutifully, with expressions of appreciation for the president, and for everything the president has done for Israel. But he continued, for the vast majority of his address, to explain the profound misjudgment of Iran — its ideology, its goals, and the immense danger it constitutes to Israel, the region, the United States, and the world — that lies at the heart of the “very bad deal” emerging from the US-led P5+1 negotiations …
But Netanyahu’s address had a clear practical goal as well. He was lobbying Congress, and lobbying the American public watching at home to pressure Congress, to assert its maximal capacity to thwart the progress of the deal that Obama has cooked up. While 50 or 60 legislators elected to absent themselves, the vast majority of Republicans and Democrats were there to nod sagely at Netanyahu’s elaboration of Iran’s rapacious, religiously driven ideology and territorial ambitions, to applaud, to jump to their feet, to be won over.
For all the cynicism and the political filtering over Netanyahu’s motivations, furthermore, the prime minister is convinced, in his heart of hearts, that Iran is determined to advance its benighted ideology across the region and beyond. The prime minister is convinced, in his heart of hearts, that the deal taking shape will immunize the ayatollahs from any prospect of revolution from within or effective challenge from without. The deal…Read More » Comments (21) »
Wednesday, March 4th, 2015 at 8:55 AM | Stand For Israel
Yesterday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the U.S. Congress. In his speech, which you can watch in its entirety above, Netanyahu warned of the dangers – to Israel and to the entire world – of allowing Iran to become a nuclear power, and discussed what should be done to keep such a travesty from happening. He also thanked the U.S. for its support of the Jewish state, saying, “Israel does not stand alone.”
You can read the full transcript of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech here.Comments (113) »
Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015 at 12:04 PM | Stand For Israel
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech before Congress tomorrow has caused dissension among U.S. legislators, with some planning to skip the event. The Washington Times reports that a group of African-American pastors has urged the members of Congress not to miss Netanyahu’s remarks:
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The message from a dozen prominent black pastors this week … was loud and clear: Don’t skip out on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyuhu’s speech.
“That is a slap in the face to the people of Israel, and not only that, it’s a slap in the face to God. And not only that, it’s also a slap in the face of all Bible-believing African-American people in this country…” said Pastor Dexter D. Sanders of the Rock Center for Transformation in Orlando, Florida …
Pastor Cecil Blye of More Grace Ministries in Louisville, Kentucky, dismissed suggestions that the House violated protocol by extending the invitation to weigh in on U.S. negotiations with Iran.
“Charges from some members of the United States Congress about the breaking of protocol are no more than a very red herring,” Mr. Blye said. “The American people need to hear Israel’s voice on this urgent matter now. If one side of the aisle can facilitate this, so be it.”
Monday, March 2nd, 2015 at 1:07 PM | Stand For Israel