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  • NEWS ANALYSIS Netanyahu passes first test, but will his coalition survive?

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 5 (JTA) — The Israeli government may be down, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insists his coalition is far from out. “The coalition will hold,”” Netanyahu predicted defiantly on Sunday, just hours after Foreign Minister David Levy resigned. The prime minister brushed aside near-universal predictions among Israel”s political commentators that the departure of…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Swastika-kipah comment highlights Israeli tensions

    JERUSALEM, March 10 (JTA) — Those who believe that religious-secular tensions in Israel have never been worse received a stunning corroboration in recent days. In a March 5 speech, Shlomo Gazit, a reserve general in the Israel Defense Force and the longtime head of army intelligence, compared the knitted skullcap — which usually signifies a…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Israel awaits next U.S. move after Ross mission collapses

    JERUSALEM, March 31 (JTA) — Things are not as bad as they look, the Israeli government insisted after an American envoy”s latest round of shuttle diplomacy failed to move the Israeli-Palestinian peace process forward. It is “a dramatization” to speak of a crisis or confrontation in the U.S.-Israel relationship, the prime minister”s aide, Uzi Arad,…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Calm before the storm: Will Clinton, Netanyahu collide?

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 13 (JTA) — An air of expectation pervaded Israel this week as both the government and opposition looked to the prime minister’s scheduled meeting with President Clinton in Washington on Jan. 20 as the key to future developments in both the domestic and international arenas. Not even a tie Knesset vote on a…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Could top talk on Lebanon lead to Israeli withdrawal?

    JERUSALEM, March 17 (JTA) — If the Israeli government’s current Lebanon initiative is a public relations gimmick — as its critics insist — it’s working. The international community and the international media is full of discussions of Israel’s desire to withdraw from southern Lebanon. For the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the focus on…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Dance troupe controversy spurs fears of cultural war

    JERUSALEM, May 5 (JTA) — Israel”s jubilee celebrations were held under the official slogan, “Together in Pride, Together in Hope,” but Israelis emerged from the festivities even less together than usual. All over the country, people are speaking of a “kulturkampf,” a cultural war — and even a civil war — in the wake of…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Divine act or coincidence? Israelis ponder sex scandal

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 26 (JTA) — If President Clinton’s problems were in the hands of Israeli public opinion, he wouldn’t have a problem at all. The outpouring of press coverage about Clinton’s alleged affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky has reached the news-addicted shores of Israel, where it has provoked widespread sympathy for the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Exasperated Albright hints at shift in U.S. peace policy

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 3 (JTA) — U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright”s decision to go public with her frustration over the Middle East peace process represented a change in U.S. policy — at least on the tactical level. But does it presage a policy review on a more substantive level? After meeting last weekend with Israeli…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Move to change election law blow to heads of Likud, Labor

    JERUSALEM, June 3 (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition leader Ehud Barak, at odds about so much, now find themselves perched on the same shaky limb in the wake of a Knesset move to change the system of electing a prime minister. Last week’s vote to revoke the direct election law —…

  • Back to court and Knesset? The pluralism battle plods on

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 10 (JTA) — Back to the courts and the Knesset? No one is sure where the battle over religious pluralism in Israel is headed now that efforts for resolving the conversion crisis through negotiations apparently have failed. The Reform and Conservative movements are vowing to head back to the Israeli courts to press…