Around the time of elections, issues both new and old are surfacing the Israeli political agenda. Hartman scholars provide their insight into the March 17 elections.
Video recording of a live Election Day webinar with Donniel Hartman and Yossi Klein Halevi as the results were announced:
During elections we think about the main political issues that challenge the Jewish state, which may sometimes differ from the primary concerns of the diasporic Jewish community. Suzanne Last Stone says "we have to distinguish between people who will not and don’t want to subscribe to what has been until now a normative view, that if you’re Jewish you need to be supporting Israel. On the other hand, the creation of Israel as the expression of the cultural, spiritual, and political life of Jews today is one of the greatest historical experiments in our time".
Read the responses of Rabbis Batsheva Meiri (left), David-Seth Kirshner (center), and Denise Eger (right).
"We won’t be voting on a peace agreement in the upcoming elections, but we will be voting on whether peace among equals is considered a fundamental value in our society."
Before the 2013 elections, Tal wrote: "Politicians have become an easy target for our anger and our criticism, and some may well deserve it. Israel is certainly not a special case in that regard. But what we tend to forget when we disdain them is that our politicians are a product of the societies that elect them."
I Have No Chief Rabbi -One of the central issues this upcoming election is the Israeli rabbinate and its monopoly over Jewish life in Israel. Yossi Klein Halevi says to the Chief Rabbis of Israel "you don’t represent me. I have no chief rabbi".
What Happened to Bipartisan U.S Support for Israel? – Yossi Klein Halevi and Prof. Steven M. Cohen debate the loss of US political bipartisan support for Israel . The Israel-American relationship is dynamic, and in their letters to each other, the two tackle central points of contention between American Jewry and Israel.
Religious coercion and the monopoly of the religious institution in Israel must end. Ariel argues that it would be a mistake to support the US model of separation of religion and state; the government should continue to support education of religion and religious institutions.