The News From Israel

All Politics Is Local

01.21.13 2:10 PM ET

"Sometimes it seems as though the seats up for election are not for the next Knesset, but rather the local municipality."
--In a beautifully written piece, Gideon Levy describes the gripes of indifferent Arab voters and an Arab MK campaigning for them to vote, even if it's not for him. (Haaretz+)

  • Israel to change route of separation fence near Jerusalem to cut off Palestinians from E-1 area - Defense Minister Ehud Barak has decided to close the breach in the barrier between Jerusalem and Ma'aleh Adumim, which will leave residents of Al-Zaim cut off by a fence to the east and by a wall to the west. (Haaretz+)
  • Two Israeli citizens charged with planning Be'er Sheva terror attacks - Bedouin brothers confess to targeting central bus station, train station; Jewish IDF soldier arrested on suspicion of selling them ammunition for drugs. (Haaretz+ and Ynet)
  • Nine Palestinians arrested for pummeling ultra-Orthodox with snowballs - The suspects allegedly hurled insults and snowballs relentlessly at the two ultra-Orthodox men; investigation opened despite victims' refusal to lodge complaint. (Haaretz+)
  • Fate of Israeli university's controversial politics department on hold until after elections - In a bid to shirk right-wing pressure, Haaretz has learned, the Israeli educational council is dithering on a decision to save the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion University. (Haaretz+)
  • Poll: Ultra-Orthodox must join workforce rather than army - Majority of Israelis prefer to see ultra-Orthodox integrate into labor market rather than be drafted by IDF, believe government must allot special budgets for this purpose. (Ynet)
  • U.S. fundraiser testifies he transferred $30,000 to Ehud Olmert's brother - Morris Talansky says former PM asked him to help his cash-strapped brother, Yossi. (Haaretz+)
  • Ramallah: 18 Palestinians injured in riot - Three protesters, 15 Palestinian cops injured in clashes after protest gets out of control. (Ynet)
  • Egypt busts mass explosives haul heading for Gaza, largest single shipment yet- Lorry carried 1 tons of explosives, largest single haul discovered by Egypt; police have seized a total of 5 tons of explosives as well as disassembled rockets and automatic weapons in the past three months, according to local media reports. (Agencies, Haaretz)

For the full News from Israel.