Summary of Editorials from the Izraeli Hebrew Press

Summary of Editorials from the Izraeli Hebrew Press

Ma’ariv analyzes the situation in Syria and believes that „The regime is expected to collapse and almost certainly leave behind a state that is back at square one,” and adds, „The expected rise of the Sunni Muslims to power in Damascus will bring with it a new agenda.” The author believes that „Hizbullah and Iran are concerned by what is happening in Syria” because „they understand that all of the existing agreements with Assad, including the arming of Hizbullah, and the strategic coordination against Israel will go down the drain.” However, the paper cautions that „Hizbullah and the Iranians also understand the opportunity in the possibility that the collapse of the Syrian army could open the way toward the ability to move terrorist actions to inside Syria and from there against Israel.”

Yediot Aharonot commends Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat’s intention to redraw Jerusalem’s municipal boundaries so as to exclude „the Arab villages that were annexed to the city after the Six Day War,” and declares that, „Including within the municipal area the Arab villages on Jerusalem’s outskirts and applying Israeli sovereignty to them was stupid.” The author asks, „What exactly have Beit Hanina, Shuafat, the Shuafat refugee camp, Jebel Mukaber, Zur Baher and Um Tuba contributed to Jerusalem?” and responds, „The most prominent contribution has been terrorism.” The paper dismisses the argument that excluding these areas from Jerusalem would leave the city vulnerable to rocket fire from them and contends that the IDF is the best guarantor against such a possibility, not where the city boundaries are drawn.”

The Jerusalem Post writes: „Knesset members of radically different political orientations will seek this week to sway the Knesset Education Committee to promote Israeli recognition of the Armenian genocide. Even if the Armenian case is not seen as a holocaust in the extreme form, which it took towards Jews, it is certainly the nearest thing to it, and amply deserves Israeli recognition. Previous attempts to secure such recognition were foiled by Foreign Ministry opposition. Every care was taken not to vex Turkey, for years Israel’s sole quasi-ally in the region. Presumably, now that Turkey has turned ultra-hostile such constraints should no longer be relevant. Nonetheless, enough cautionary voices in high echelons still counsel against „rash action” on the grounds that residual hope might yet exist that some cooperation with Ankara can be rekindled in future. Turkey continues to cast a dark shadow over Israeli considerations even in the stark absence of any viable relationship with that country. Turkey continues to prevent Israel from doing the right thing even when there’s no expedient realpolitik incentive to avoid the moral high ground.”

Haaretz comments: „Last week four European members of the UN Security Council condemned the settlement policy, violence against Palestinians and damage to mosques; Israel’s Foreign Ministry responded by rebuking Germany, France, Britain and Portugal, declaring them „irrelevant.” The condemnation of the three most important countries in Europe, which Israel is wooing in its struggle to stop the Iranian nuclear program, halt the Palestinian-state initiative in the United Nations and upgrade agreements with the EU, represents a suicidal foreign policy. Still, there is more than a sliver of truth in the claim that the EU is irrelevant in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As far back as the Venice Declaration in June 1980, nine members of the European Community pledged to play a „special role” and to „work in a more concrete way” to end the Israeli occupation in the territories. Hopefully the Israeli government’s bizarre behavior will spur Israel’s friends in Europe to fulfill this important obligation and be truly relevant.”

Yisrael Hayom refers to acts of excluding, and discriminating against, women in the public sphere, as instigated by certain extreme ultra-orthodox elements, and asserts that „The time has come to use a strong hand against lawbreakers.” The author claims that „The majority of ultra-orthodox, yes, the majority of ultra-orthodox, would support such a move,” and urges the Government to rescind any and all support payments to someone who is caught or documented using violence – verbal or physical – against women.