Jerusalem Post
Yediot Aharonot
Israel Hayom

Summary of editorials from the Hebrew press


The Jerusalem Post is wary of PM Netanyahu’s intent to pass a law that would allow the Knesset to suspend lawmakers for ‘inappropriate behavior,’ and contends that if he moves ahead with his initiative to suspend the three Arab MKs who visited the families of slain terrorists, “he might gain in popularity, but he would be striking a blow to a fundamental right – particularly when exercised by a democratically elected politician – the freedom of expression.” The editor notes that the Israeli–Palestinian issue has polarized the political climate inside Israel to such a point that there are few issues on which Jews and Arabs of Israel reach consensus, and declares: “Maintaining a robust democracy that protects basic freedoms regardless of one’s views can provide a basis for such consensus.”

Haaretz declares: “Two moves being pursued with the premier’s blessing weaken the professional echelon of government, undermine its independence and open it up to a wave of unworthy political appointments,” and asserts: “the weakening of the professional government administration may serve the ministers in the short term and enhance their positions on the Likud Central Committee, but the country will pay heavily as government management deteriorates. Netanyahu knows what steps are needed to streamline government management, but his desire for political survival is once again clouding his judgment. Ordinary Israelis are the ones who’ll pay the price.”

Yediot Aharonot believes that the IDF is focused predominantly on the threat of infiltration through the tunnels emanating from the Gaza Strip, and is not placing enough emphasis on the potential threat of infiltration through the fence itself, even though 140 infiltration attempts were recorded in 2015. The author warns that with little hope for relief of political, economic and social distress in the Strip, the security conflict in 2016 may break out due to the loss of control, and suggests: “One option is that thousands of Gazans storm the fence – which will inflame the situation on the border – or that the fear of an internal collapse would lead Hamas to another round of armed conflict. Or both.”

Israel Hayom reviews the failed peace conference, which France and other Western countries’ sought to advance to resolve the war in Syria, on the backdrop of the French threat to convene an international peace summit aimed at advancing a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and declares: “The Syrian peace summit teaches us what to expect when various countries try concocting a solution to the Palestinian issue; but mostly we can learn that the naiveté, not to mention the cynicism, displayed by the international community are liable to hurt the very people that such a summit purports to be trying to help.”

[Alex Fishman and Eyal Zisser wrote today’s articles in Yediot Aharonot and Israel Hayom, respectively.]