IMRA Middle East News Updates https://www.imra.org.il Middle East News & Analysis en-US 1669329609 1669329609 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Capalon Internet 2.0 imra@netvision.net.il (Aaron Lerner) News & Analysis IMRA Middle East News Updates https://www.imra.org.il https://www.imra.org.il/imra_sm.png 144 97 Weekly Commentary: DM Can Veto Promises Related to Judea and Samaria https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73909 <p>Content preview: Weekly Commentary: Defense Minister Can Pocket Veto Any Promise<br /> Related to Judea and Samaria Dr. Aaron Lerner 24 November 2022 Smotrich is<br /> not a child. He knows that if the minister of defense continues to have authority<br /> over civil affairs in Judea and Samaria and Smotrich isn't the DM that literally<br /> every promise made by Binyamin Netanyahu to his co [...] <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H3 RBL: Good reputation (+3)<br /> [194.90.9.27 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL Mailspike good senders<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Weekly Commentary: Defense Minister Can Pocket Veto Any Promise Related to<br /> Judea and Samaria<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 24 November 2022</p> <p>Smotrich is not a child.</p> <p>He knows that if the minister of defense continues to have authority over<br /> civil affairs in Judea and Samaria and Smotrich isn't the DM that literally<br /> every promise made by Binyamin Netanyahu to his coalition partners regarding<br /> Judea and Samaria can be rendered worthless.</p> <p>The DM has absolute authority to approve or refuse to approve the<br /> construction of even a square centimeter.</p> <p>The DM also effectively determines the extent to which there is active<br /> enforcement of the law against illegal Arab construction in Area C.</p> <p>The same talking heads who today are attacking Smotrich for insisting that<br /> he either serves as DM or that authority for civil affairs in Judea and<br /> Samaria be transferred to the Ministry of Finance with Smotrich holding that<br /> portfolio will later ridicule him for being a patsy if he gives in only to<br /> find that the DM Netanyahu appoints institutes a building freeze for Jews<br /> and continues the hands off illegal Arab construction policy of DM Gantz.</p> <p>One can still hold out hope that Binyamin Netanyahu is simply going through<br /> the motions to prove to the Americans and others that he tried his best to<br /> neutralize Smotrich but found himself left to choose between another round<br /> of elections and ceding to Smotrich's demand.</p> <p>If that is the case Netanyahu will be able to have his cake and eat it to.</p> <p>When talking to foreign leaders Netanyahu can explain that he wanted a<br /> freeze but his hands were tied. And when election are held again in a few<br /> years Netanyahu can take credit for the Jewish construction and control of<br /> illegal Arab construction.</p> <p>________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Thu, 24 Nov 2022 17:40:09 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73909 Weekly Commentary: Triple Bonus If Smotrich Defense Minister https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73908 <p>Content preview: Weekly Commentary: Triple Bonus If Smotrich Defense Minister<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 19 November, 2022 If Smotrich and Ben-Gvir don't blink there<br /> is good reason to believe that Binyamin Netanyahu will, when left with no<br /> time to spare on the clock, form a coalition government with Bezalel Smotrich<br /> servi [...] <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H3 RBL: Good reputation (+3)<br /> [194.90.9.27 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL Mailspike good senders<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Weekly Commentary: Triple Bonus If Smotrich Defense Minister<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 19 November, 2022</p> <p>If Smotrich and Ben-Gvir don't blink there is good reason to believe that<br /> Binyamin Netanyahu will, when left with no time to spare on the clock, form <br /> a<br /> coalition government with Bezalel Smotrich serving as minister of defense.</p> <p>This will be a triple bonus for Israel:</p> <p>#1. The appointment of anyone other than Smotrich will be interpreted by<br /> the world as Netanyahu's acquiescing to pressure. When Israel gives into<br /> pressure this only invites more pressure.</p> <p>#2. Israel faces a dynamic unprecedented environment, both locally,<br /> regionally and worldwide that requires a minister of defense who can think<br /> out of the box untethered by a commitment to the common wisdom shared by<br /> members and senior veterans of the defense establishment. This relates to<br /> all levels and aspects of Israel's defense. Israeli ministers of defense<br /> with civilian backgrounds have a track record of making critically better<br /> choices not only regarding weapons systems but also in guiding the hammering<br /> out of operational decisions.</p> <p>Smotrich took the transportation portfolio with no formally relevant<br /> training or experience. Yet despite this It wasn't long before he was<br /> asking a lot of questions no one in the room ever thought of even<br /> entertaining and the answers led to a dramatic leap forward in<br /> transportation infrastructure construction.</p> <p>Granted defense is considerably more challenging and complicated then<br /> transportation. But that is exactly why it would be counterproductive to<br /> have a minister of defense from the ranks who would be tempted to find<br /> solace in embracing old approaches.</p> <p>#3. The minister of defense calls the shots on Jewish construction in Judea<br /> and Samaria and action against illegal Palestinian construction in Area C.<br /> The Jewish State is expected to reach a population of 15 million by 2049,<br /> and 20 million at the end of 2065. We simply cannot afford to lose Area C<br /> through inaction.</p> <p>Don't blink.<br /> ________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Sat, 19 Nov 2022 12:51:02 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73908 Observation: Is Netanyahu Showing World He Forced to Appoint Smotrich https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73907 <p>Content preview: Observation: Is Netanyahu Showing World He Forced to Appoint<br /> Smotrich DM? Dr. Aaron Lerner 16 November, 2022 Binyamin Netanyahu plays<br /> chess in four dimensions so there are two radically different explanations<br /> for the crisis we now have over the appointment of Bezalel Smotrich as defense<br /> minister. <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H3 RBL: Good reputation (+3)<br /> [194.90.9.27 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL Mailspike good senders<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Observation: Is Netanyahu Showing World He Forced to Appoint Smotrich DM?<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 16 November, 2022</p> <p>Binyamin Netanyahu plays chess in four dimensions so there are two radically<br /> different explanations for the crisis we now have over the appointment of<br /> Bezalel Smotrich as defense minister.</p> <p>Option #1 Netanyahu genuinely wants to implement an across the board freeze<br /> on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria and a similarly strict freeze on<br /> significant action against illegal Palestinian construction in Area C for<br /> the foreseeable future and therefore cannot appoint Smotrich defense<br /> minister since the DM has the independent authority to approve Jewish<br /> construction as well as action against illegal Palestinian construction.</p> <p>Option #2: Netanyahu wants to demonstrate to the world that he WANTED to<br /> implement an across the board freeze on Jewish construction in Judea and<br /> Samaria and a similarly strict freeze on significant action against illegal<br /> Palestinian construction in Area C but that he was FORCED to appoint<br /> Smotrich DM in order to successfully form his ruling coalition.</p> <p>The theatrics we will observe will be identical.</p> <p>In a series of interviews Netanyahu has cited making diplomatic relations<br /> with the Saudis as a top priority. He has also explained to Likudnikim that<br /> Israel has to hold back on activity which might anger the Biden<br /> administration which remains in power for the next two years. In addition,<br /> the vote by the UN General Assembly which sends us to the Hague for<br /> effectively annexing Judea and Samaria via the continued "occupation"<br /> provides another justification for an open-ended freeze.</p> <p>I frankly doubt that ANYONE in the world, besides possibly Netanyahu's wife<br /> and son, actually knows if the answer is Option #1 or Option #2.</p> <p>But that does not matter for third parties.</p> <p>If you think that we should not have a building freeze despite the arguments<br /> for a freeze then you support Bezalel Smotrich being appointed defense<br /> minister.</p> <p>If you think that we should have a building freeze then you support the<br /> moves to appoint someone else.</p> <p>Count me among those who want Bezalel Smotrich appointed defense minister.<br /> ________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Wed, 16 Nov 2022 03:57:41 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73907 Does GA vote justify Netanyahu appointing Likud DM for building freeze? https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73906 <p>Content preview: Observation: Does GA vote justify Netanyahu appointing Likud<br /> DM for building freeze? Dr. Aaron Lerner 14 November 2022 Is the recent UN<br /> General Assembly vote to have the Hague prosecute Israel for de facto annexing<br /> Judea and Samaria behind Binyamin Netanyahu's announcement to Likud Party<br /> leaders that he will appoint a [...] <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (-0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> -0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H3 RBL: Good reputation (+3)<br /> [194.90.9.20 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> -0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL Mailspike good senders<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Observation: Does GA vote justify Netanyahu appointing Likud DM for building<br /> freeze?<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 14 November 2022</p> <p>Is the recent UN General Assembly vote to have the Hague prosecute Israel<br /> for de facto annexing Judea and Samaria behind Binyamin Netanyahu's<br /> announcement to Likud Party leaders that he will appoint a member of the<br /> Likud to be minister of defense?</p> <p>On previous occasions that Israel faced proceedings in the Hague Mr.<br /> Netanyahu opted to impose building freezes and suspend activity against<br /> illegal Palestinian construction in Area C.</p> <p>Appointing a Likud defense minister would insure that the minister of<br /> defense, who has exclusive authority to approve construction as well as<br /> guide enforcement policies against illegal Palestinian construction in Area<br /> C, would freeze all activity at Mr. Netanyahu's instruction. It is not<br /> clear that Netanyahu can rely on Smotrich to follow such instructions.</p> <p>Binyamin Netanyahu can cite the UNGA vote as an unexpected development which<br /> serves to invalidate any promises he may have made prior to the vote.<br /> ________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Mon, 14 Nov 2022 01:22:12 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73906 Bennett: Doubling Yeshiva students allowances economic moral error https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73905 <p>Content preview: Naftali Bennett: The plan to double the allowances of Yeshiva<br /> students is a serious economic and moral error Facebook November 11, 2022<br /> The plan to double the allowances of Yeshiva students is a serious economic<br /> and moral error. <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (-0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> -0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H2 RBL: Average reputation (+2)<br /> [194.90.6.65 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Naftali Bennett: The plan to double the allowances of Yeshiva students is a<br /> serious economic and moral error<br /> Facebook November 11, 2022</p> <p>The plan to double the allowances of Yeshiva students is a serious economic<br /> and moral error.</p> <p>Doubling the allowances will hurt young haredis, how the public relates to<br /> the Torah and the future of the State of Israel.</p> <p>This, because the increased allowances will encourage more young people not<br /> to go to work or study a profession, because it is more comfortable to stay<br /> in the yeshiva.</p> <p>Eventually they will drop out at a late age, without the ability to make a<br /> living with quality work.</p> <p>And so it will result in increasing poverty and their dependence on tax<br /> payers from the rest of the population in Israel.</p> <p>This cannot last for long.</p> <p>Everybody knows that.</p> <p>Unfortunately, the leaders of the parties are now afraid to say this out of<br /> fear of the wrath of the haredi parties.</p> <p>The haredis are our brothers.</p> <p>And they are the fastest growing population in Israel.</p> <p>Therefore their responsibility towards the country must grow accordingly.</p> <p>I believe in the need to study Torah.</p> <p>I appreciate and love studies.</p> <p>The Torah protected the people of Israel and it is our foundation.</p> <p>But if there is no flour - there is no Torah.</p> <p>The idea that a group which is growing in size, will be funded more and more<br /> by others whose proportion in the population is decreasing, is not<br /> practical.</p> <p>And quite frankly, even if the politicians are afraid to say it, it is not<br /> ethical.</p> <p>Imagine 7 soldiers carrying an eighth soldier on a stretcher.</p> <p>It is definitely possible.</p> <p>Now imagine 4 soldiers carrying 4 soldiers on a stretcher.</p> <p>Impossible. And not fair either.</p> <p>They will collapse and leave.</p> <p>In the end, those bearing the stretcher will choose to go somewhere else<br /> (easier today than ever) and instead of strengthening the Torah, the process<br /> will, forefend, lead to a negative feeling towards the Torah.</p> <p>Sometimes the action that is supposedly pleasant and helpful is actually<br /> harmful.</p> <p>Over the years I have worked to increase employment in the haredi society.</p> <p>And I was also the first to come out with a real plan, pro haredi and not<br /> populist ("From Discrimination to Integration") - the one we adopted in the<br /> government I headed: A year ago we raised the soldiers' wages by 50% and<br /> promoted lowering the exemption age for the haredis from 24 to 21.</p> <p>The big test of the government that comes to power: Will the rate of<br /> hareidis working in 3-4 years be higher or lower than today's rate.</p> <p>Shabbat Shalom.<br /> ________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Sat, 12 Nov 2022 17:39:01 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73905 Weekly Commentary: Civilians Better On Strategic Decisions Than Brass https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73904 <p>Content preview: Weekly Commentary: Israeli Civilians Better On Strategic Security<br /> Decisions Than Brass Dr. Aaron Lerner 11 November 2022 Recently Defense Minister<br /> Gantz basically sneered in disgust at the idea that a civilian rather than<br /> a fellow general might be the next minister of defense. <br /> <br /> Content analysis details: (0.0 points, 5.0 required)<br /> <br /> pts rule name description<br /> ---- ---------------------- --------------------------------------------------<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_H3 RBL: Good reputation (+3)<br /> [194.90.6.2 listed in wl.mailspike.net]<br /> -0.0 SPF_PASS SPF: sender matches SPF record<br /> 0.0 SPF_HELO_NONE SPF: HELO does not publish an SPF Record<br /> 0.0 RCVD_IN_MSPIKE_WL Mailspike good senders<br /> SpamTally: Final spam score: -40<br /> X-Antivirus-Scanner: Clean mail though you should still use an Antivirus</p> <p>Weekly Commentary: Israeli Civilians Better On Strategic Security Decisions<br /> Than Brass<br /> Dr. Aaron Lerner 11 November 2022</p> <p>Recently Defense Minister Gantz basically sneered in disgust at the idea<br /> that a civilian rather than a fellow general might be the next minister of<br /> defense.</p> <p>I wonder if this reflects on how much consideration he has given, over the<br /> years, when he found himself attending a meeting of the security cabinet and<br /> a civilian had the chutzpah to be more than just part of an Amen choir.</p> <p>But the truth is that Israeli civilians have frequently made better<br /> decisions than the brass on military matters.</p> <p>Consider a few examples:</p> <p>Brass opposed building spy satellites:</p> <p>Ehud Barak and others senior brass strongly opposed Israel building its own<br /> spy satellites - this even though it was already clear that the US could not<br /> be relied upon to fill the gap. Civilian Menachem Begin overruled the brass.<br /> The brass only truly understood why this critical equipment was needed when<br /> the first satellite photograph flashed up on the screen.</p> <p>Brass opposed acquiring second strike capability:</p> <p>Ehud Barak took the lead in quashing plans to purchase German subs featuring<br /> launch tubes with an extra large diameter for Jericho missiles. Israel only<br /> received this strategic capability when Germany supplied the first subs for<br /> FREE after German equipment played a key role in the Iraqi missile attacks<br /> against the Jewish State.</p> <p>Brass opposed opening the Second Lebanon War by destroying Hezbullah's long<br /> range missiles:</p> <p>The brass wanted to first punish Lebanon by destroying infrastructure but<br /> civilian DM Amir Peretz insisted that the IAF take out the long range<br /> missiles before they began hitting Tel Aviv. This move was essentially the<br /> only correct Israeli decision in the entire war. To hear Peretz describe his<br /> battle with the brass in his own words: http://youtu.be/SM_LMb10qsQ .</p> <p>Civilian DM Liberman pushed through arming the IDF with an ample supply of<br /> precision ground to ground missiles of various ranges to dramatically<br /> enhance our ability to address many challenges without relying on piloted<br /> platforms. This included top of the line systems that Israel was already<br /> supplying to other armies but the local brass wasn't interested in.</p> <p>And there are more examples.</p> <p>In each case civilian "common sense" trumped decades of military training<br /> and experience.</p> <p>Would Bezalel Smotrich be a great civilian minister of defense?</p> <p>He finessed his time in the hesder program to get a law degree when he was<br /> ostensibly studying in yeshiva but this is not a reflection on his skills<br /> today.</p> <p>When Smotrich became minister of transportation no one expected him to come<br /> close to filling the boots of "Mr. Herod" - Yisrael Katz.</p> <p>But it turned out that Smotrich was actually better at the job. And he was<br /> better in part because when he sat at a meeting he did not accept<br /> conventional wisdom and asked a lot of great questions no one in the room<br /> had thought about. Thanks to the implementation of his thinking out of box,<br /> the pace of transportation infrastructure construction took off.</p> <p>I don’t know if he would have the same success as minister of defense.</p> <p>But I do know that with all the challenges we are facing that it pays to<br /> have a civilian at the helm rather than just a fellow traveller of the Chief<br /> of the General Staff.</p> <p>________________________________________<br /> IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis</p> <p>Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on <br /> Arab-Israeli relations</p> <p>Website: www.imra.org.il</p> Thu, 10 Nov 2022 18:34:50 -0500 https://www.imra.org.il/story.php?id=73904