Sunday 12th of July 2020

bibi capers...


Benjamin Netanyahu could inform Israel’s president that he is unable to form a government as early as this week after unity talks with rival politicians broke down at the weekend, his Likud party said.

Israel has entered a period of political paralysis after an inconclusive election on 17 September. Neither Likud nor the opposition Blue and White party, led by ex-military general Benny Gantz, won a clear lead.

President Reuven Rivlin asked Netanyahu on Wednesday to try to forge a coalition, hoping he could make a power-sharing deal with Gantz as together they have enough seats in the Knesset for a majority. One suggestion had been that the pair rotate the role of prime minister.

Netanyahu had potentially up to six weeks, but negotiations on Sunday abruptly stalled and both sides publicly blamed the other.

If Netanyahu hands back the mandate, the president might ask Gantz to try, although he also does not command a majority in the Israeli parliament. With no apparent route out of the crisis, and after two unclear elections this year, there is the possibility that a third national poll could be called.

Likud did not say why the prime minister might give up early, although Blue and White accused Netanyahu of wanting a third election to give himself another chance at securing a majority.

The opposition party complained on Sunday that Likud had made impossible demands, including promising religious and far-right political allies that they would be part of any unity government. Netanyahu also announced he should serve first as prime minister.

Blue and White said those unacceptable preconditions had “the sole aim of generating support in preparation for dragging Israel into another round of elections at the behest of Netanyahu”.


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zionistic troubles...



On Sunday 22nd Sept, I, a Labour Party member since 1986, had my banner taken down from outside Conference. Why? The police agreed it was not anti-Semitic. When Zionists first started complaining about it, the police photographed it and referred it to their superiors. Not a problem, they said. The banner could stay.

But the Zionists, from the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) and the Sussex Friends of Israel (FoI) were incandescent with rage. Repeatedly they complained and when the police refused to act, they took the law into their own hands. 

Cllr Joshua Garfield from Newham Council rushed past me at the banner and slashed it in two. The police apprehended him and removed the large sharp scissors he had used and took his details. (Later Garfield boasted about it on twitter.)


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little wars...

Israel has attacked Iranian and Syrian military targets in Syria in what it says is retaliation for rockets fired toward Israel the day before, military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Avichay Adraee says.

Syria’s air defences were able to destroy most of the missiles fired by Israeli jets over the capital Damascus before they reached their targets, Syria’s state news agency SANA said, quoting a military source.

Israel’s military said its missile defence system shot down four rockets fired from Syria toward Israel on Tuesday (local time).

“Warplanes raided dozens of military targets belonging to the Iranian Quds Force and the Syrian Army inside Syrian territory, including surface-to-air missiles, headquarters, weapons depots and military bases, in response to yesterday’s rocket fire from Syria towards Israel,” Lt-Col Adraee said on Twitter.

The elite Quds Force is the overseas arm of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC).

SANA said three were injured as a result of the Israeli counter-attack.

Israel says it has carried out hundreds of strikes in Syria against Iranian targets trying to establish a permanent military presence there and against advanced weapon shipments to Tehran-backed Lebanese militia Hezbollah.

“Yesterday’s Iranian attack on Israeli territory by firing missiles … is the best proof of Iran’s real cause in Syria. The Iranian position poses a threat to Israel’s security, stability in the region, and the Syrian regime,” Adraee said.



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Note: this item is not prominent in the Western media, though it should be. It is prominent in the Russian media though: