Ronen Bergman on the Terms of Israeli Politics
Question: How does an Israeli define right-wing versus left-wing? Ronen Bergman: I wish I knew. Basically, it had a very strong distinction and it’s nothing about economics. It’s only about how you treat the issue of whether to give or not give the occupied territories.
Can we, as Israelis, guarantee or be sure that if we give back the Golan Heights that were taken from Syria during the war of 1967, will Syria comply with the agreement of sustainable peace with Israel?
Can we trust the Palestinians if we give them back the territories? For independent Palestinians state, that they would not launch another war, go on another attack against Israel and also the rest of the territory?
But this is the basic question. And this was the basic distinction between Right and Left. Right was voting against giving back territories, the Left said we have to compromise otherwise we are going to face a new war with either Syria or the Palestinians or both of them very sooon.
Nowadays, things have changed because the most right-wing Prime Minister Israel ever had, Ariel Sharon, gave back the Gaza Strip. Now, basically, he did it just to divert attention from the police inquiries against him in Israel. So, he did it for irrelevant reasons, but I would say this, the distinction is very, very narrow, and even Benjamin Netanyahu, now the right-wing leader, offered some compensation, some retreats to the Palestinians when he was the Prime Minister.
But if I were a Palestinian, I would prefer to have either Barak, the leader of the Labor Party, or Tzipi Livni rather than Nathaniel. Nathaniel comes on the ticket of being a hawkish, anti-Hamas, anti any withdrawal from the territories to power, and he would be elected, if elected, with the voices of the right-wing supporters. So, he would be reluctant to give up but they always say that things that you see from the Prime Minister’s office, you don’t see it from anywhere else. So, he would also have to make much, much more retreats and withdrawals than he declares now.
Recorded: Sep 19, 2008
It is not about economics, says Bergman, it is about the right of return.
Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.
No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.
Cosmologists propose a groundbreaking model of the universe using string theory.
- A new paper uses string theory to propose a new model of the universe.
- The researchers think our universe may be riding a bubble expanded by dark energy.
- All matter in the universe may exist in strings that reach into another dimension.
Evolution doesn't clean up after itself very well.
- An evolutionary biologist got people swapping ideas about our lingering vestigia.
- Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.
- Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun.
For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.
- In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
- This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and things that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
- Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way.".
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.