The Labour Party

By Ted Belman

I attended a talk by MK Dr Einat Wilf, the youngest member of the Labour Party. It was hosted by Media Central. She was born and raised in Israel, served as an Intelligence Officer in the IDF and holds a B.A. in Government from Harvard Univ., a MBA from INSEAD in France and a PhD in Political Science from Cambridge. Somehow she found time to author two books, My Israel; My Generation, and Back to Basics; How to Save Israeli Education.

She was as impressive a speaker as her credentials would suggest. Going from memory (Jeez I should take notes) she made the following points.

1. She wasn’t worried about the predominance of left wing professors or what they do in there private lives. As long as they are good teachers and make their pupils think, she’s OK with that. She also was OK with the use of texbooks which the whole world uses rather than texbooks truer to the Israeli narrative. I challenged her on this arguing that if 95% of the profs are far left how can she believe that the students wouldn’t be affected. She said we can’t tell the universities who to hire. I said she was ignoring the fact that the left wing profs prevent right wing profs from being hired.

2. The Labour Party has most of the social program Ministries. She said that her party emphasizes what a persons must give in order to have a safety net protect them. i.e., if you are able bodied you must work. She applied this to the Hareidi and the Arabs saying that the Hareidi men don’t work nor do the Arab women. The Labor Party is working to change this. She said the Hareidi cost us in three ways, a) we pay for their education without demanding they learn employable skills, b) we pay for their welfare because they don’t work and c) we pay in reduced GDP because they don’t produce. When I asked how this was going she said that the current suituation is unsustainable. Fifty percent of elementary shool pupils are either Hareidi or Arab. Thus it won’t continue, because it can’t continue.

3. I reminded her that her party favoured disengagement in Lebanon and Gaza. In hindsight, does she think we are bettor off for it given that we are facing 80,000 rockets in Lebanon and Gaza. In response she said that the reason Sharon went for disengagement was because he felt he had to break the backs of the settler movement. He could not allow them to dictate. He had to show expulsion was possible. According to her the settler movement is now in disarray. But I said that I was referring to the security matters. She once again avoided the question and talked about whether disengagement should be unilateral or not.

4. Ten years ago the left and the right were certain that they had the answers. Now the left is skeptical that peace would ensue from withdrawl or that the Palestinians even want a state. On the other hand the right is now prepared for partition.

5. The Labor Party has excellent MKs who are doing their thing. But no one sees this as the Labour Party as doing its thing. We must build our image. Kadima on the other hand tests the wind every morning to know what policies to endorse. It is a party of no ideology.

Sorry, that all I can recall.

August 23, 2010 | 15 Comments »

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15 Comments / 15 Comments

  1. She’s married to a German gentile. There’s still hope for you yamit if you can show her the error of her ways. 😉

    Figures, I thought working for Shimon Peres was the ultimate polluting act any Jewish Israeli could make for themselves but now I find she has gone off the chart in personal pollution and self degradation. A commie, a Peres acolyte, Married to a Kraut Goy?

    Sorry but I’ll pass on this one, I would always feel like I needed to take a shower. 🙂

  2. Charles Martel says:
    August 23, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Whatever chance she may have had to regain her sanity was truly lost after several years at INSEAD and Cambridge.

    Plus she was a political adviser to Shimon Peres.

  3. JJ: Is it fair to assume that your philosophy stems in part from the time you spent at Harvard and were exposed to campus Jewish life in the United States?
    EW: In Israel there’s this sense that there’s the right way of being Jewish, and it’s the ultra-Orthodox way and somehow you define yourself in relation to that. Being exposed to Jewish life in the U.S. disavowed me of that notion.

    a MBA from INSEAD in France and a PhD in Political Science from Cambridge

    Whatever chance she may have had to regain her sanity was truly lost after several years at INSEAD and Cambridge.

  4. JJ: Is it fair to assume that your philosophy stems in part from the time you spent at Harvard and were exposed to campus Jewish life in the United States?

    EW: In Israel there’s this sense that there’s the right way of being Jewish, and it’s the ultra-Orthodox way and somehow you define yourself in relation to that. Being exposed to Jewish life in the U.S. disavowed me of that notion.

    JJ: What was your religious background growing up?

    EW: None. Absolutely none. Totally secular; atheist; nonpracticing rationalist.

    JJ: Have your religious views changed?

    EW: No; I’m very proud of myself that despite a very intense commitment to Jewish life and the Jewish people and Israel it has never led me to question or rethink my rationalist thinking on religion.

    JewishJournal.com: Q&A with Einat Wilf

  5. OK, Ted. Which photo is which? Who was on the first pic shown here?

    Or does Wilf own an extensive sheitel collection?