Sunday, October 26, 2008

Event 1: At 10:00 PM, PM Livni announces that negotiations with Shas have reached a deadlock and we are headed to elections.
Event 2: At 1:00 AM, by order of DM Barak, hundreds of troops destroy Noam Federman's house near Hevron with no warning and a maximum of violence and cruelty (press barred) predictably leading to local hotheads making an ugly scene (press invited) predictably leading to the usual suspects condemning all settlers and fanning the flames of hatred.

If you think this is a coincidence, ask yourself: cui bono?

Monday, October 13, 2008

I've been lazy about blogging lately, so this will be three posts in one.

1. My eternal lawsuit has been settled. After four years of inventing ever more creative ways to keep this case from reaching beis din, my adversary finally ran out of delaying tactics and agreed to terms I am not allowed to discuss. A full description of the delaying tactics could fill a book. Among other things his lawyers went to civil court to get the beis din disqualified on grounds that included a) a part-time secretary at the beis din is a distant relative of my wife, b) the beis din wouldn't allow his crooked toen to appear before it, c) the beis din was discredited by its involvement in the Tendler affair. In the end, his delaying served me well. First of all, I got an education regarding how batei din operate. Secondly, I didn't have a chance to put the money in the stock market.

2. My Obiter Dicta and Jameel finally got me to watch the dati tele-novella, Serugim. I enjoyed it. It was familiar and unfamiliar. I lived in the "bitza" in Katamon (and near Katamon) as a single for many years and stayed in the neighborhood for many more years after I got married. My wife is a graduate of Maaleh, the dati film schoool from which many of the people involved with Srugim graduated. But my single days in Katamon were a long time ago. There weren't that many of us back then and our lives weren't so insulated from the families around us. Also, some of the conflicts dealt with in the show were more stark and intense for me than they seem to be for the characters in the show. (I acknowledge that this might be a trivial observation since one's own experiences are always more vivid than somebody else's, but I think there's more to it than that.) In any event, we are finally past Kuni Lemel and, lehavdil, HaHesder. Datiim on TV are now real people. Dayenu.

3. Bogie Yaalon's new book, Derech Arukah Ketzarah, is a must-read. It is a first-person story that names names. In short, Bogie says that Dov Weisglass and Omri Sharon corrupted the political system and the army, hijacked the country and caused significant long-term diplomatic and military damage. Mofaz is a dope who didn't understand the job of a Defense Minister and Dan Halutz's arrogance left the IDF unprepared for war. Both were willing dupes of Weisglass and the Sharons and were appointed for just that reason. Like the author of any memoir, Bogie is looking out for his own reputation here, but his account comes off as coherent, believable and frightening. I have met him in small forums on several occasions and he is exceedingly modest, unassuming and direct. His account is important and will be assiduously ignored by the Israeli MSM. I hope to cover it in detail soon.