Why I’m Going Green

Haim Watzman For years I have preached against small parties. Whenever my friends get excited by the latest new and fashionable political movement or the latest political star whose ego-trip involves founding and leading his own party, I’ve warned that a vote cast for a small party is both wasted and wanting. Wasted because, in … Read more

Requiem for Sini, and for the Labor Party

Gershom Gorenberg My new piece on the Labor Party is up at The American Prospect: Sini died. My son spotted the square black-bordered obituary notice deep inside the newspaper. It was placed by Sini’s kibbutz. It referred to him as “Sini,” his nickname — “Chinaman” in loose translation, politically incorrect today but accepted when he … Read more

Left Behind: Why a New Party Won’t Save Social Democracy in Israel

Haim Watzman Ha’aretz has been going ga-ga over the impending new left-wing party that will incorporate Meretz, a few old Labor hands, and some literary figures who have long acted as the collective conscience of the Israeli left. The newspaper also devoted several pages of its Friday opinion supplement to the age-old question of whither … Read more

Barak Speaks–Does He Have Anything To Say?

Haim Watzman

Ehud Barak will Talk More to the Media,” says the headline in today’s Ha’aretz (Hebrew edition). It’s a mark of the sad state of Israeli politics that it’s worth a headline when the leader of what ought to be the country’s progressive camp decides to talk to the press.

It’s hard to believe but, since regaining leadership of the Labor Party more than a year ago, Barak has said virtually nothing about the major policy issues of the day. He’s one of the three major contenders for the prime minister’s post in the next elections, yet he’s given the public little information about his thinking. We know his social policies, his foreign policy strategy, or his budget priorities. His message to the voting public has been “trust me because I’m Israel’s most decorated soldier and a proven leader.” But leader of what, and in which direction?

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