Israel news

Hamas pledges truce as Kassams hit Ashkelon

November 5, 2008

Palestinians have fired 35 Kassam rockets into Israel today from the Gaza Strip, in the worst outbreak of violence since June's ceasefire.

Hamas have claimed responsibility for the rockets but have vowed to maintain the five-month truce with Israel.


Shin Bet chief fears settlers may turn to violence

By Ben Lynfield, November 4, 2008

Amid growing tensions with radical settlers, the head of the Shin Bet security service has warned that extremists can be expected to engage in armed attacks against the IDF in the event of peace moves with the Palestinians.

Yuval Diskin did not explicitly say that he expected attempts at political assassination in the event of a push for removal of settlements and outposts in the West Bank.


Olmert faces fresh allegation

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2008

A new allegation of corruption was raised this week against Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

David Cohen, one of the central witnesses in the case against former Finance Minister Avraham Hirschson - accused of stealing NIS 4 million (£680,000) from two public organisations - told a Tel Aviv courtroom that he had passed a "fat envelope" to Mr Olmert in the early 1990s when he was health minister.


Swedish firm to quit West Bank

By Michal Levertov, October 30, 2008

A Swedish company has apologised for setting up a factory in a settlement-based industrial zone and announced it will move it within Israel.


Settlers turn against their state

By Ben Lynfield, October 30, 2008

The Intensifying enmity of far-right settlers towards the state erupted into violence this week after soldiers destroyed two illegal structures in Kiryat Arba, near Hebron.

In response, settlers vandalised Palestinian cars, desecrated a Muslim graveyard and gave incendiary radio interviews. Shmuel Ben-Ishai, a Hebron settler, told Army Radio: "We hope they [the soldiers] will be smitten by their enemies, that all of them will be like Gilad Shalit [the soldier held by Hamas] and that they will all be slaughtered."


Gap closing in race for Jerusalem mayor

By Simon Griver, October 30, 2008

As the campaign for Jerusalem mayor approaches the November 11 election date, strictly Orthodox candidate Rabbi Meir Porush appears to be closing the gap on secular frontrunner Nir Barkat.

In a poll published by the Dahaf Institute, Rabbi Porush, a United Torah Judaism MK, won 36 per cent of the vote compared to 48 per cent for Mr Barkat's independent Jerusalem Will Succeed party.

Russian-Israeli billionaire Arkady Gaydamak polled 6 per cent and Dan Biron of the Green Leaf party, which wants to legalise marijuana, failed to reach even 1 per cent.


Israeli elections: Predict this one at your peril

By Daniella Peled, October 30, 2008

It is unfortunate, but hardly surprising, that Israel finds itself heading for new elections. No
Israeli government has managed to make it through its full term in a generation.

Still, it is a pity. Israel could have done with a little stability right now, what with the global financial crisis, the threat from Iran, a soon-to-be new US president, talks with Syria, negotiations with the Palestinians and all the usual stresses and strains of being a beleaguered state in the Middle East.


Israeli elections: Blackmail, threats and a policy or two

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2008

Israel's ruling party, Kadima, will try to run its election campaign on the promise to reform Israel's shaky electoral system. Kadima spin-doctors are planning to leverage the breakdown in coalition talks with Shas to portray party leader Tzipi Livni as a no-nonsense stateswoman who will not give in to blackmail.


Israel in shock over Anglo family killings

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2008

Israeli police are still searching for a motive for a triple killing and suicide in which a policeman apparently shot his wife and two young children before turning his gun on himself.

Leeds-born Michael Fisher apparently shot his wife Hila, 30, and children Yuval, three, and Yarden, eight weeks, in their flat in Hod Hasharon last week.


JC printing in Israel

October 30, 2008

From this week, the Jewish Chronicle is being printed locally in Israel for fast distribution in the country each week.

The JC will be available on Sundays along with the Jerusalem Post. The arrangement is designed to make it easy and convenient for Israelis and other residents to enjoy the world's oldest Jewish newspaper.

JC editor David Rowan said: "We are delighted to be partnering with the Jerusalem Post, a terrific and influential newspaper, and look forward to welcoming many new readers in Israel."