Archive | Sharkansky_Ira

Sara Netanyahu may be indicted for public funds misuse

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — It’s pretty much the same across the 40 or so countries that can claim to be functioning democracies. Elected officials sit at the top, and claim to be running things, but they are dependent on professionals in the administrative departments to advise them on what is possible and wise, and […]

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Current tzimmis: Kahlon, Shabbat, Israeli KIA, Barghouti

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — There’s always something to bother the Jews of Israel. Currently we’re smelling the preparations for a national election. Some may suspect that it wafts over the continent from Britain or France, but it comes from local pressures. The major responsibility may be those long-running police investigations into Sara and Bibi […]

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Trump from afar: unpredictable, inexperienced

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — We’re a long way from understanding the man who our American friends chose as their President, and just as long from being able to guess what he’ll do next. It’s both drama and mystery. We outsiders may lack some of the details about American politics. Americans who think they understand their […]

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The bubble machine at work near you

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — There are both big and little issues in politics, and they compete to determine what we think and how we vote. The big things get the headlines: war, hopes of peace, economic crises, large scale migration, natural disasters, major projects that cost a great deal and promise huge benefits, and personal […]

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Russia abandoning Assad is a U.S. fantasy

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — There is a lot that is hidden from view, but what we can see is not promising. The US Secretary of State and other ranking officials are overlooking the considerable Russian investment in Bashar al-Assad, and demanding that Putin et al abandon their ally and work with the US in […]

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Questions abound in wake of U.S.’s strike on Syria

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — I awoke Friday morning to the news of a significant American attack on Assad’s forces. It recalled the first bulletins about 9-11, George W. Bush talking about the fall of Saddam, pictures of the Libyan crowd killing Qaddafi, Barack Obama announcing the end of Osama bin Laden, and.watching John Kennedy […]

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American presidents typically lack foreign knowledge

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — It’s no surprise that Americans vote their interests. Most likely, citizens of all countries with a meaningful right to vote are parochial, i.e., most concerned about what’s close to them. For many, national political matters are less important that what they get from local authorities– whether their streets and parks are […]

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Despite all, Likud still best bet to lead Israel

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — Politics is unlikely to be static, or even stable. Things change. The causes can be pressures from the economy, international events, domestic tragedies, or the maneuvers of political rivals. All this makes prediction risky, and usually foolish. Yet a snapshot is also helpful. Assuming that the description is reasonable, it […]

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Trump versus other presidents’ competence

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — It’s not a good sign when an op-ed piece in the Washington Post uses the terms incompetent, stupid, and a “cartoon version of a presidency” in connection with Donald Trump. The President’s supporters are already making their standard remarks about a left-wing press. Sure, the Washington Post along with the […]

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Troubles, rivals multiply for Netanyahu

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — Israel’s vibrant democracy is at another testing point of holding itself together. However, these times have occurred often enough over the course of 70 years to suggest that the country will survive, more or less as is. The current uptick of political squabbles is occurring along with several police investigations into […]

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Differences often vast between Arab street and leaders

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — There’s an unpleasant lesson in the enthusiastic homecoming provided to Ahmad Daqamseh, the Jordanian soldier who served a 20 year sentence for killing young Israeli girls at the “Island of Peace” on the Israeli-Jordanian border, and another unpleasant lesson in Dagamseh’s comments that Israel is a rotten place that must […]

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Pragmatism may serve both sides in Mideast conflict

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — Neither the Jews nor the Palestinians have been masters of their fate. Both are small nations, subject to forces much more powerful. But the grandchildren of miserable Jews who came to Israel in the 1940s and 1950s as refugees from the Holocaust and Muslim persecution have created a vibrant democracy, ranked […]

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Divisions among Jews focus on U.S., Israel leaders

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — I’ve recently received notes from two of my Internet friends suggesting that the usual tension among Jews has reached a point of high fever. Involved in the uptick is the continuing issue of Israel not doing enough to accommodate Palestinians, and the election of Donald Trump. Both notes come from Jews […]

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Why Israelis, happy for support, still worry about Trump

By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM — One of my correspondents provoked this column with the following response to what I had written previously. “I read your article about who is Donald Trump. and it leaves me confused , for once America has a president that is for Israel and you want to pick him apart? The American people […]

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