37 thoughts on “Barak Leaving Labor: Rats Leaving Sinking Ship – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
Comments are published at the sole discretion of the owner.

  1. Just to add another metaphor into the mix – Isn’t Barak like the proverbial child who murdered his parents and then asked for the court’s mercy (i.e. the public) because he’s now an orphan?:-)

    1. Yes, but come the next election I think the electorate will be in no mood to extend mercy to him. Their verdict will be “guilty” of fraud, deception, irrelevance and personal aggrandizement. Barak should retire & get himself some comfy military/security consultancies earning him a few mil or so a yr.

  2. I think it’s more like a dead weight lifted of the sinking ship. Now it may survive. Israel certainly needs a labor party.

    1. Israel needs a true, principled progressive party. Or even a liberal party. Unfortunately Labor has long passed its “sell by” date, as has Meretz. They’ve failed every possible test of their principles.

  3. ” It will also strengthen Hadash, since it will assume the mantle of the last viable truly progressive Israeli party (I won’t even talk about Meretz, another zombie party–dead party walking).

    I would say Barak is like a rat fleeing a sinking ship except that this rat gnawed through the ship’s hull and caused it to sink. Now, he’s only confirming what everyone but him knew all along. ”

    Yup .

    Bring on the elections we at Hadash are ready , hoping Avrum Burg is still aboard , wont vote for him but wish him well .

    ” Barak slammed Labor members who he said “have been dragged to the Left, to post-modernism and post-Zionism.”

    better dragged to the Left than surrendering to the Right like Barak

    ” peace process represented (!) by the current government ”

    LMAO .

    1. Now he is talking …


      ” Say it clearly: Full Jewish-Arab partnership, without any “buts.” Democracy for all citizens. A complete end to the occupation, without any deals and sophisticated formulae, without blocs, and without leftovers. And a truly social economy. Turn your backs to Barak and establish the Labor-Meretz-Hadash coalition. Embark on a new path. A large leftist bloc against all the rest. Then we’ll see how well they fare against us ”

      So Richard what do you think , have we a chance ?

      1. Hooah, Kibbutznik! I don;t understand Israeli politics, and I don’t even predict American politics, but I absolutely hope you have more than a chance.

        Your statement is the best thing I’ve read in a long, long time.

        1. Shalom John Welch

          There is this giant rumor that the Israeli Left is dead , its not, see :



          “Tonight we are telling the Labor Party that it is a full partner of the most racist government in state history, and that they must leave it immediately,” he said.

          Hadash Chairman Mohammad Barakeh said, “We are at a dangerous crossroads where democracy is concerned. Democracy is collapsing, not because of Lieberman but because of the support he is receiving from the prime minister. Jews and Arabs who care about democracy cannot fail at this time. Anyone who wishes to know the power of the people can look to Tunisia.”

          They want more of us on the streets, I promise you that there will be more as long as this oppression of human rights from within continues … not in my name they dont.

          1. Duck

            Last elections :

            Avoda = 13
            Hadash = 4
            Meretz = 3

            Total = 20

            I’m sure we will do much better next time around but if you want to be a pessimist who am I to spoil your fun ?

          2. I was referring to Burgs article Deïr Yassin :

            ” Turn your backs to Barak and establish the Labor-Meretz-Hadash coalition. Embark on a new path. A large leftist bloc against all the rest. ”

            I’m from Hadash , I don’t have a problem with Balad joining a leftist bloc if they want to , the more the merrier 🙂

          3. I like Hadash a lot. My question wasn’t a critique but merely a question. Whether Balad is too ‘radical’ in their nationalist claims for integrating a leftist coalition in Israel or not. I guess the leftist Jewish-based political parties would lose many supporters if they made a coalition with Balad. What do you think ?

          4. Deïr Yassin,
            They definitely would. Honestly, I don’t like Balad at all. I’ve never heard them do anything, and really all they care about is the Palestinians, which is something I have a problem with. (For the record, I also have a problem with Gil or any other party that doesn’t care for anything but its own egotistical interests)

            I just browsed to their site, they offer ZERO information in Hebrew. They don’t even try to turn to non-Arabs.

            Out of curiosity, does anyone know of any of their achievements? I’m looking for a proposed/passed bills list.

          5. A big question is whether a nationalistic party CAN be part of a leftist coalition.
            It will also cost it votes.

            This is why I believe a coalition should be formed that would be tight enough to have a real shape and direction, but loose enough to include groups like balad AND the so caled “national left”.

            Regardless, the left is going to get an even greater hit come next election.

          6. @ Shai)
            I’ve noticed on various occasions that you’re incapable of understanding the Palestinian point of view .
            You talk about “egoistical interests” and you dare comparing Balad to a political party representing (Jewish) pensioners. You have no idea of how the Palestinians, with or without Israeli citizenship, consider the state of IsraeL. You’re telling me that my cousins living in the State of Israel as second-class citizens on their own land, highly educated (abroad) but incapable of finding jobs at their level of competence, who have been told on various occasions that if they’re not happy, they are free to leave etc etc, that they should think about “what good for the Jews” when they vote ? They didn’t create that State, they didn’t want it, and it’s not theirs, (I know this is a taboo here), but as long as Israel hasn’t made it’s mea culpa and recognized what has been done to the native population, that feeling is never going to change. And you ask the Palestinians to think about the Jewish majority.
            Talking about Balad, if you ever get the occasion to see Simone Bitton’s documentary “Citizen Bishara”, it’s highly recommendable. You know, Palestinians used to vote Labor because they felt they had no other choices, and one of the huge merits of Azmi Bishara is his enormous work in the conscientization of the Israeli Palestinians.

          7. @ Shai
            I forgot this clip. Please watch and try just for one moment to think about what you would feel if you were Palestinian.
            The Balad-leader Jamal Zahalka (I LOVE him) being interviewed in Rachel Leah Jones’ film “Ashkenaze”. And please notice: maybe Balad’s program is not translated in Hebrew but this film has subtitles in Russian, and not Arabic !

          8. Shalom Deïr Yassin

            I think if the Zionist partys ignore the non Zionist partys like Hadash and Balad then they can not call this a Democracy .

            Read this :

            ” The struggle against racism must be a joint Jewish-Arab effort, just as it was when thousands demonstrated in Tel Aviv on Human Rights Day. As Martin Luther King said, there is no path to peace and equality; peace and equality are the path. “

  4. Leading U.S. politicans signalled recently their “unhappiness” with Ehud Baraks role as a kind of mediator between the Obama admin and Netanyahus government. Could this have influenced his decision to leave Labor and found a new party?
    “New game, new luck?”

  5. As I said in a previous entry

    “Plus ca change plus c’est la meme chose”

    Next election scenarios:

    1) Livni head of Kadima – no coalition – Likud takes over AGAIN – total lack of policies except surrender to blackmails (read Lieberman/Shas + fringe)

    2) A MAN head of Kadima – coalition – AGAIN total lack of policies. Why you ask – because the other probable coalition members will STILL BE in the blackmail business (read Lieberman/Shas + fringe)

    Anyone for a Tunisia type of revolution so we can throw the bums away once and forever

    What a sad state

    Barak has FINALLY closed his political life, let’s celebrate, one down 119 to go

    1. Not sure Barak is dead. Perhaps he’ll follow Shimon Peres’ route & become etched in stone as president. That would allow him to lapse into the same sort of senility/irrelevance which characterizes Peres.

      1. Shimon Peres in all his uselessness is/was a far superior human being and diplomat not to say he didn’t demolish his party, he simply quit.

        Barak carries the stigma of being unmasked as a liar by the Obama people, THAT on top of literally smashing to pieces his political alma matter will just deny him the support he needs to be voted.

        Meir Kahana was a straighter man than this one is/was ever will be

  6. Barak’s game seems to be to ensure his short-term political survival. He is so addicted to his seat in the government that he’ll do anything to keep it, no matter how destructive and shortsighted. His new party is a joke. Who does he think will vote for it? People who think Labour is too far on the left, but don’t want to vote for Kadima? Yeah, good luck in getting even one seat from that demographic.

    Note that the erosion of Social Democracy is part of a global trend. Social democratic parties around the world (new Labour in Britain, Germany’s SPD, the US Democrats) since the 1990s have foolishly sold out their traditional values and their traditional voters in favor of pandering to their political opponents’ base. In all cases, in spite of short-term successes, this has led to the alienation of their own political base, to crisis and in some cases to the disintegration of parties. Conservatives around the world are having a good laugh at their expense, I guess.

    1. great observation about the social democrats deserting their so-called principles. think their apologists will now realize it and quit waiting for them to make “changes they can believe in”?

  7. I don’t think it is helpful to analyse this simply in terms of Barak’s personality or ambition, whatever we think about them. It is noticeable that Amir Peretz is also going, the only Oriental/Sephardi Jewish leader the Labour Party has had and a former ‘radical’ head of Histadrut (if such a thing isn’t an oxymoron!).

    This is the logical conclusion of Labour Zionism being played out. Barak is Labour’s Frankenstein, to use another monster metaphor. It was the Israeli Labour Party which was more responsible than any for the creation of a ‘Jewish’ State and today we see what that means – virulent racism within the State, apartheid treatment of the Palestinians of the West Bank, terror and siege in Gaza and of course the perpetual search for enemies and new wars.

    It wasnt Likud but Labour which campaigned for Jewish Labour, Land and Produce i.e. the exclusion of everything Arab. Today the present coalition is implementing that policy with e.g. the policy of eviction and destruction of the Bedouin village Arakhab in the Negev.

    There was never anything progressive in Israeli Labour. As Zeev Sternhell points out in his excellent The Founding Myths of Israel, the ILP produced no socialist or theoretical literature in the socialist movement and was content with platitudes of how Israeli workers were marching towards the new millenium and appeal to the ‘co-operative’ spirit. There was absolute hostility to joint work with the Arab working class in Israel because for Ben Gurion the key slogan and policy was ‘From Class to Nation’ in other words the national struggle against the Arabs was their class struggle. Something which owes more to European fascism than Marxism. Indeed the Histadrut deliberately destroyed the mixed railworkers union in Palestine around 1920.

    Nor was the ILP social democratic as Koshiro states, in a post that is utterly confusing. The Democrats in the USA are also not, and have never claimed to be, social democratic. They are a capitalist party, the party of Mayor Daley and originally white segregation. They are certainly the graveyard of all protest, with people like Liebermann always there, ‘blue dog’ Democrats, to ensure that nothing radical like a national health service gets off the ground.

    New Labour in Britain and the SPD in Germany have certainly gone to the right. But even the first, with which I’m more familiar, is based on the trade unions, which themselves, in however half-hearted and tokenistic a way, put foward policies that favour the working class.

    Labour in Israel created the Histadrut as a means of incorporating Jewish workers into the colonisation project. Something Golda Meir was clear about when she described Histadrut as a ‘general colonising agency’. It was, after all, the 2nd largest employer in Israel to the mid-1980’s.

    The ILP launched Israel’s wars, whether it was in 1948 against Palestinians inside the Jewish partitioned area or in 1956 against Nasser (Mapam even demonstrated against withdrawal) to the 1967 war. It introduced Oslo which has created a quisling Palestinian leadership under Abbas. It was always the most pro-US party in Israel. It pioneered and supported the settlements under the Allon Plan. And of course it kept Arabs in Israel under military rule until 1966 and then instituted the repression in the Occupied Territories until Begin took over from Rabin.

    All in all Barak was a fitting leader of the Israeli Labour Party!

    1. Are you saying that socialist zionism is a bad thing because some socialist zionists did terrible things?

      Jewish labor is NOT the exclusion of everything arab. It is the opposite of what we have now – a richer jewish class exploiting poorer arabs for construction and other kinds of physical labor.

      The fact that zionism became entangled with racism doesn’t make it racist itself.

      1. No I’m not saying that socialist zionism is bad because its adherents are. I’m saying something very different. There is, and never was, any such thing as socialist Zionism. It’s like having an anti-racist racism. It is a contradiction. Socialism is about the unity of the working class and oppressed. Zionism is about unity of the ‘Jewish people’ above and beyond everything else.

        Yitzhak Ben Zvi made this clear, as did many others, when said that faced with a choice between the socialist and nation, the former must give way everytime. That is why the whole of the Zionist Labour leadership in both Adhdut Ha’avodah and Hapoel Hatzair, who united in Histadrut in 1920, rejected joint Jewish-Arab working class unity and constantly sought to introduce the Jewish national objective into trade union affairs. Hence why Histadrut was set up as a Jewish only organisation. This fact alone says it all.

        I’m fraid ‘duck’ is wrong. Jewish labour did indeed mean the exclusion of Arab labour and pickets were set up at orange grove, orchards and factories to implement it. Jewish owners were only to employ Jewish workers, that was their ‘class struggle’.

        If Zionism had merely become ‘entangled’ with racism then it would be a different matter. But it sought from the start a Jewish State i.e. one bereft of Arabs and non-Jews. Problem was that 1/4 million lived there by 1897. Yet they were barely notice because to the Zionists, like all colonists, they didn’t exist in their calculations. From a Jewish state to Jewish only towns, not renting to Arabs, barring Arab infants from kindergartens etc. is a natural progression.

        1. Again, just because socialist zionism turned out to be racist, doesn’t mean it had to be, or that it will always be so.
          A balance can be found between the unity of the jewish people and the unity of the working class.

  8. Bibi’s new scapegoat

    Labor’s MK’s were the reason why Abbas does not sit down for negotiations.

    SAY WHAT? – Does he really believe we are ALL DONKEYS ASSES.

    Has ALL shame being drained from this guy – Chavez ranting is a million times more philosophical and truthful that this pale shade of a leader

    Savior? Anyone? 911?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share via
Copy link