In straightforward undiplomatic Israeli style, Olmert, who really does not suffer fools and is no angel himself, made a public declaration in an interview with the Jerusalem Post that:

“I am sick and tired of hearing from stupid settlers that Gaza and Jerusalem are the same, Gaza and Jerusalem are not the same. They never were. There are priorities. And I am not prepared to look at Gaza and Jerusalem and Shilo and Beit El and Ofra as if they were all on the same level. Nor am I prepared to accept the argument that if I pull out of Gaza, I am necessarily willing to pull out of Jerusalem. This is nonsense and I won’t have any part of it.”

And then, just to prove that he really does think some of them are stupid, he clarified later in the interview:

“I meant to say that those who argue that if I pull out of Gush Katif I will definitely pull out of every part of Jerusalem are using a stupid argument.”

Now that is a Jewlicious moment…

Editors note: In the following Friday issue of the Jerusalem Post, a large clarification note was issued on page 3, stating that it was not the settlers Olmert called stupid, but the idea that Gaza and Jerusalem wll be treated equally.

About the author

themiddle

26 Comments

  • Ah,
    the ‘clarification’ is the clincher.

    He’s says were stupid because we extrapolate that from him embracing the retreat from Gaza until the last centimetre, he will also pull out of every part of Jerusalem.

    Really, we already know that as former Mayor of Jerusalem, he reiterated and stressed at every oppurtunity (especially during Ehud Barak’s campaign) that Jerusalem is the UNDIVIDED eternal capital of Israel. But now we know for sure (he’ssaid it so many tiems aleady) that Olmert supports giving away only parts of Jerusalem, just not all of it.

    If Jewlicious is about turning your back on Jewish memory and miraculous wars, then l’chaim!

  • Josh, Jewlicious is 5 people right now and many visitors. If you haven’t noticed, the 5 of us are not in agreement about many things, although in some ways we probably represent the Jewish community and its factions.

  • Also Josh,

    As to your comment, I want you to think not about “turning your back on memory” but rather what happens when ideology meets reality. As an aspiring PM and senior politician, Olmert could say a lot of things when he was mayor of Jerusalem. Now that he actually sits in power, he has to deal with reality.

    Take a look at Netanyahu. Remember all of his pronouncements against Oslo? Who ended up signing the Hebron Accord? When you have to make the decisions and not just be a critic, life is very different. He’s doing the same thing now when he criticizes the pullout to pander to the far Right. Rest assured that if he becomes PM, he will suddenly be arguing for the Road Map. Pragmatism…

  • Can we please move on – I have been purposely skipping the articles about Israeli politics because I can’t stand to hear overseas Jews pontificating about things that will not effect them, and about which they are woefully uninformed.

    Can we stick to the “pikanty” stuff? Those who want to argue Israeli politics can go to Jewschool.

  • Ben David,

    You are right. We really are just going over the
    same oppinions. I would like to emphasize
    nobody knows what is going to happen. There
    is a certain volatility that is very unpredictable
    in the atmosphere. The spector of bigger and
    badder things seem to be in minds of this
    current round of elected Israeli leaders. I have
    no idea what they are. I don’t have to
    appreciate the “pragmatic” spin to thier
    apparent logic though, after all there was such
    democratic and judicial decions made…

    When will this end?

  • Ben David is not right, Netsach, because one cannot be right when one hasn’t voiced an opinion on a topic, merely pontificated in a woefully uninformed manner.

  • I gather mobius at jewschool runs a different kind of ship. I spent time there just looking at what people were saying. I just didn’t feel like chiming in there. I actually found Jewlicous through Jewshool. When I saw jewlicious and spent a little even less time checking things out here, I didn’t feel I had what to say either. When Esther came out with her experience and commentary about Frumster… Then I realized that I can blog in with a very sharp focus and without a doubt, I knew what I was talking about as far as I was concerned. very informed way and participate I did. This subject I don’t consider myself that informed. I do see some core points that are critical that I would like to focus; not so much from an informed point of view, but an attitude aspect. When I want to make a point, sometimes being informed can make or break a point or not. Ben David seems to right in the aspect that Jewschool appears to be more into that manly man big talking dude bloger attitude that lends itself to politico talk.
    It also appears that Jewschool has its tech better set and more stable.

  • Ben David seems to right in the aspect that Jewschool appears to be more into that manly man big talking dude bloger attitude that lends itself to politico talk.
    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    … well, no, actually their posting-privileged lineup is just top-heavy with self-hating leftie Jews – you know, the “it’s all our fault, we’re oppressive colonial conquerors of a proud, ancient nation… and whatever the Palis do they MUST be forgiven because they are brown-skinned third worlders and we are light-skinned first-worlders with a shitload o’ guilt…” kinda like that.

    Middle is just… well, middling – your typical non-Ortho Jew who has swallowed the anti-settler line whole, because it jibes with his own prejudices.

    It doesn’t matter that the non-politicized ranks of the army all are dreading the day after this withdrawal, it doesn’t matter that Sharon knifed and rolled Israeli democracy like a thug. As long as those uppity oh-so-righteous settlers get planked…

    Middling, middlebrow… that kinda thing…

  • Ben-David,
    “I canรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt stand to hear overseas Jews pontificating about things that will not effect them…”

    I think it’s clear by now that Israeli policies affect Jews everywhere in the world. And it seems to be only when Diaspora Jews espouse pragmatism, as opposed to fanaticism, that they’re asked to butt out of Israeli policy decisions.

  • EV:
    And it seems to be only when Diaspora Jews espouse pragmatism, as opposed to fanaticism, that theyรขโ‚ฌโ„ขre asked to butt out of Israeli policy decisions.
    – – – – – – – – – – –
    This is a good example of “woeful ignorance”.

    There is NO “pragmatic” justification for the expulsion/retreat from Gaza or northern Samaria.

    If you were over here, you would know that:
    – for over a year the non-politicized echelons of the army have been issuing dire predictions about Israel’s weakened position following the withdrawal.
    – That opinion has been backed up by the (former!) Army chief of staff and the (former!)head of Israel’s secret service – both of whom were sacked for daring to contradict Sharon.
    – Those firings were just the last in a long chain of Sharon’s power grabs, dismissal of cabinet members, and high-handed indifference to both the results of the last elections and the results of votes within the Likud party – by which he ran roughshod over Israeli democracy to implement this plan, which the voters rejected.
    – Israelis have caught on to this, despite a biased left-wing media whose major lights have publicly said things like “we know he’s corrupt, but we have to protect Sharon until the expulsion is carried out.”
    – As a result, public support for the withdrawal has sunk to just over 40 percent. And many Israelis are wondering why oh-so-enlightened Western Jews are supporting this trashing of democracy.

    … and it’s left to American immigrants like me to explain that most American Jews care more about their liberal bona fides than about the lives of Israelis. Their main interest is just to make sure they aren’t made to look bad over there – they can’t be bothered to actually find out the facts, and most have never visited.

    And the demonic image of the settlers conjured up by liberal media jibes with their own furious disdain for the Orthodox – which only clinches the deal.

    Spare me the lectures about “pragmatism” and “fanaticism”.

  • Jewschool is informative though. I would say even more then Jewlicious. Jewschool does sport a very vast amount of information that is arranged coherently with good access. Now that doesn’t say anything of the quality, reliability or obnoxious bias…etc of the data, just the tech and presentation seems well done. Its a site I do appreciate just sort of looking and learning, not so much talking. I wouldn’t think there is that much room there for the likes of my viewpoint. I did see like a guy named Striemel there and some other folk. He seemed to say a lot, even so, not much room there for my input either. Truthfully, I don’t know if I would like interacting with the characters there so much. After a month or more blogging in Jewlicious, I actually like talking with most of folk here, regardless how “anti” some are.

  • Seems to me, on the basis of these comments, that your bias is blinding you, Ben David. Open your mind.

    Oh, and you should really stop making claims about me without knowing the facts (which I’ve admittedly not shared in much detail), it makes you appear quite silly and weakens your claims.

  • I am not an over sea jew i live and hope to do so for a long time in the land. Jews should not say bad things about other jews is all i am saying. And who are you to say someone is doing something stupid?

  • Moose, write your complaints to Ehud Olmert. Better yet, vote against Likud next time. As for me, yes, if I feel a certain argument is stupid, I will say so. Whether another Jew is making the stupid assertion or not is not the issue. Right now on this site people are calling me far worse than stupid, and do you see anything but politeness?

    I’ve always disagreed with the line about how if we give up Beit El or Hebron, we might as well give up Tel Aviv. In fact, I believe it is a harmful debating tactic and plays into the hands of those who wish to see Israel destroyed as a Jewish state. Jerusalem and Tel Aviv are a different priority to all Israelis, and fall into a different perception among the other nations of the world than do the territories.

  • Just because Olmert cackles something as
    stupid as what he says and likes to make
    himself a hero to certain people when he talks
    like that, doesn’t make him hot stuff.
    He may also know that he is already on the list
    of people that may not polically endure for the
    next round of elections. So he can say what
    he wants… no big deal, no body cares really. I
    love Israel, a man is free to say shtut when he
    wants. I believe Olmert has that right. He has
    certainly earned that privelage
    Just as this “Democratic” and “Judicial”
    process” seems to have gone a certain way,
    doesn’t mean anything as to what will actually
    happen. The reason I say that is because I
    don’t have faith in that sector. I don’t really
    feel a need to debate the good or bad
    qualities to “democratic” and “Judicial”
    process that seemed to have happened. A lot
    more silly things have happened before.

    We will see who looks stupid.

  • Middle,

    You were the one enthusiastically calling Olmert ‘jewlicious’. I really think that you are not doing a service to the jewlicious brand by associating it with Olmert.

    Just want to remind you that in the last primaries, Olmert (already then Sharon’s star) was dissed so badly into a very low ranking. Nonetheless, Olmert was promoted to a high position and that already signaled that some people were up to no good. (democracy?)

    Do you really believe the saying ‘things you see from here, are not what you see from there’? If Sharon, Netanyahu, and Olmert had to be ‘pragmatic’ once entering office and magically change their mind, then they are weak people (and great politicians?). If they were strong people, they would have quit like other credible poeople (Mafdal Rabbi Levi and Eitam, as well as Sharansky). We need strong leaders now, not people who are giddy to meet Condi and change their worldviews 180 degrees without coming back to get a legitimate mandate from their voters. You can be pragmatic about social issues and economic decisions, NOT when people’s lives are at stake.

    Middle,
    not to insult you or embarrass you, though I’m really sorry to point this out. If anyone appears silly and not credible, it’s grown people hiding behind monikers and chiding others about not giving them the benefit of the doubt. At least this blog doesn’t have avatars for each blogger. Baruch Hashem, that would be too much.

    Over the past year that I’ve been visiting Jewlicious and spending an excessive amount of time on it, I’ve seen a pretty good amount of maturing/building happenning in the JL community. I think that the next step would be to lose the tm and ck and start using your real names. Then again, it’s your blog and I don’t participate in its funding either, so that’s your decision.

    Nonetheless,
    and notwithstanding his worldview, I have utmost respect for Asaf ST from jewschool because he doesn’t hide behind some ‘handle’. And how can I forget about esther and laya?

  • Josh, I am not embarrassed at all. I have good reasons for not giving my name or my personal information. As for ck, he not only has his name plastered over the site, he actually gives out his phone number.

    I don’t think our discussions would go very far if my perspectives weren’t “credible” or if I was “woefully uninformed.” The discussions go somewhere because they have strong differing viewpoints that in some ways represent a larger debate about Israel and Judaism.

    As for Olmert, trust me, I am no fan of his. I do agree that this argument about giving up a Northern Samarian settlement being a stepping stone to giving up Jerusalem is a stupid one.

    With respect to brave politicians like Eitam and Sharansky, please spare me the violins. They left when the Cabinet was doing things that weren’t going their way. Do you respect the Shinui guys in the same way?

    With deep sadness I have to say that Israeli politics is filled with people who place their own concerns and ambitions above the country’s. I don’t think Sharon is among those people. I think he belongs to an old school of Israelis of which we could use more today (and I speak as somebody who was strongly opposed to the Lebanon War and am no fan of Sharon). Reality at the top is different than when you’re in the opposition or someone seeking power. It’s always easy to find fault with something in politics since politics by its nature requires compromise. But once you reach the top and are the ultimate decision-maker, you had better address reality because you are responsible for the outcome and for the lives of millions. In this case, for the lives of half of world Jewry.

  • Josh,

    It doesn’t always hurt to lighten up sometimes. Look what happened just last night with RSO… I didn’t see that one coming. You can’t really. In the long run it was just a blast and funny, that I thought was a jewlicious moment. I was actually thinking that I am super glad I just didn’t fork out my major ID stuff…

  • What’s RSO?

    Lately, it’s been really hard to lighten up. The country is on the chopping block and the sky is about to fall. While I believe that the expulsion won’t happen, I really don’t think that the country would be able to handle the trauma and that anticipation of apprehension of something that won’t happen but there’s still a remote chance, is killing me on one hand, yet enlightening me on the other.

    Throughout our history, we know that whenever the darkness looms, then an upswing is just around the corner.

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