Two of the Arab parties, Balad and Ra’am-Ta’al, have been banned by the Central Elections Committee. This is the third time in a row (also happened in 2003 and 2006). Hopefully, the supreme court will overturn this little display of fascism, as it did the other two times.
Ha’aretz (complete article here):
"The measure was proposed by two ultranationalist parties but received widespread support. "
I’ll refrain from the details of violent speech between members of both parties- that’s an Israeli problem, that is sadly ramped on both sides of the political map. However I’d like to quote from Ahmed Tibi’s words, head of Ra’am-Ta’al, which I feel ring true:
"It was a political trial led by a group of Fascists and racists who are willing to see the Knesset [parliament] without Arabs and want to see the country without Arabs…"
Let there be no mistake, Balad and Ra’am-Ta’al are small parties. Together with Hadash (headed by Arabs but is a mixed party), the three of them fill 7 sits out of 120 seats in parliament. According to Ha’aretz, the Arab make a fifth of the Israeli population. I’d say they are grossly under represented as it is.
The first Israeli reserve soldier to refuse serving in Gaza is now starting a 14 day jail sentence. There have been 2 others, but since they weren’t sent into the strip, they decided to stay (kinda’ missed the point, those two).
And of course we can’t have that- so the Channel 10 news put it like this (to the best of my translation):
"The soldier and his family maintain that it is a conscientious objection. Zahal [IDF] spokesperson says ‘rubish, he wasn’t sent to the strip- he was sent to a course.’"
A glimpse of Israel’s young flowers (the missing translation, under the video):
Just so you don’t wonder, this is what the first interviewee, Itzik Dahan (the guy in the red shirt, who looks Arabic because he’s of Moroccan decent) had to say (to the best of my translation):
"…so it’s better that they go in all the way, clean the strip, annihilate the Hamas… That’s the way to go. Nothing to do about it."
Murono Ochayon (pronounced Morann) (woman with big sunglasses):
"At some point, we’ll get to talking, but first thing’s first- we need the shock. It will pretty much wake them up… Maybe that way they’ll fall in line, and then there’ll be someone to talk with."