Israel news summary

Israel News for 12-16-2022

News Update

In an interview to Dubai based Al Arabiya English,Prime Minister designate Netanyahu said that decisions relating to the West Bank will be made by his Defense Minister, a Likud member, and not by Religious Zionism leader Betzalel Smotrich, who demanded broad powers over the West Bank as part of his deal to join the coalition. Netanyahu also said that he would work to open diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia.

As part of their conditions to join a Netanyahu led government, ultra-Orthodox parties and the religious nationalist Religious Zionist party have demanded that people two-generations removed from Jewish ancestry, be no longer eligible for Israeli citizenship under the law. According to the current Law of Return, anyone with at least one Jewish grandparent, even if they themselves are not legally Jewish, to get immigrate to Israel and get citizenship, along with their spouses. According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, one in four immigrants is not Jewish.

The Likud is reportedly considering a compromise that would grant permanent residence status to people with one Jewish grandparent who are not themselves Jewish. There is strong opposition to changing the current Law of Return. Most of the non Jewish immigrants are from Russia and Ukraine.

A panel set up to review the deployment of IDF soldiers to security prisons presented its findings to the ministers of defense and public security, with a recommendation to remove all active duty troops from deployments in prisons. The panel was established after allegations surfaced, that female IDF soldiers, working as wardens in security prisons were sexually abused by inmates.

The first night of Hanukkah begins on Sunday night. The Jewish battle against the Greeks and Hellenists began in the town of Modiin by Matityahu the Kohen and his five sons, who became known as the Maccabees (hammers). I am writing this email in the modern city of Modiin, which sits near the ruins of its ancient predecessor, and is a testament to the continuation of the miracle of Hanukkah and the victory of the Jewish nation over its enemies, both spiritual and physical. Happy Hanukkah!!