CATEGORY: Social Culture

Israel’s election in 1 picture and 1 word: Bibinett

In my mind, the central theme of the 2013 Israeli elections was that there was no challenger to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Within that context, all the main political battles that took place occurred within the political blocs: Yechimovich vs Lapid vs Livni; but more interestingly, between Netanyahu and Habayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett. The latter were canvassing for essentially the same voter base. And if the polls hold true, Bennett emerged victorious – even if he is not crowned prime minister. He will be a major player in the next governing coalition.

Why did Bennett do so well? How did he manage to take away so many votes from the Likud? And how did they succeed in attracting voters so distant from their traditional national religious Zionist base?

For one, Bennett modeled himself on Netanyahu, and that drove the prime minister absolutely up the wall. And talking about walls, take a look at the following two pictures, I think they speak volumes about the two men, and the battle they waged between them. READ MORE



Late-Night-Show mit der norddeutschen Kabarettistin, Sängerin und Moderatorin Ina Müller. Den Abend beschließt die Band ‘Jewdyssee’, die jiddische Klassiker mit modernen Club- und Popsounds verbindet. Da wippen auch die 20 Herren des Wilhelmsburger Shanty-Chors die ‘Tampentrekker’ vergnügt vor den Fenstern des ‘Schellfischposten’ mit, wo sie wie immer bei Wind und Wetter auf ihre Einsätze warten. Jewdyssee tritt mit dem Song Yankele auf. Am 12.1 spielt die sechsköpfige Band um Maya Saban herum den Song aus ihrem aktuellen Album “5773″


Israel: Not Jewish, not Democratic

Let’s call a spade a spade, shall we?

Looking ahead at 2013 and beyond, there are two distinct trends which I see that are coalescing into one unmistakable reality: Israel is not going to be either a Jewish or Democratic state down the line.

We’re not going to be democratic because there is very, very little chance we’re going to have a two-state deal with the Palestinians.

The way things are shaping up, our next government will likely be the most right-wing we’ve ever had here and its common denominator will be the annexation of large areas of the West Bank and ratification of a report which says that Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria are legal under international law. Whether you agree with this worldview or not, the fact is that most members of the next government are going to work to make this a reality.

The Palestinian leadership in the West Bank is the most ‘moderate’ we’re ever likely to have here and what’s depressing about that is that even the maximum that a moderate Israeli government is willing to give isn’t anywhere near the minimum the Palestinians are willing to accept. And since we’re not going to have a moderate government here for at least the next four years, the Palestinians are not going to get their demands. And after the ‘moderate’ Palestinians go, their successors will be much more extreme.

So there won’t be peace and there won’t be two states.




Folge 5 - Samstag, den 12. Januar 2013, 23:30 – 00:30 Ausstrahlung ARD
Moderation: Ina Müller
Gäste: Steffen Henssler, Sven Plöger, Johannes Oerding, Jewdyssee

Informationen zur Sendung ->

Late-Night-Show mit der norddeutschen Kabarettistin, Sängerin und Moderatorin Ina Müller und nach Müllerin Art: Talk, Comedy und viel, viel Musik in der kleinen Hamburger Kneipe ‘Zum Schellfischposten’. Heute begrüßt Ina Müller zunächst den Starkoch Steffen Henssler. Der möchte seine Sushi-Kreationen vorführen und diese spontan per Lieferservice im eigenen nahegelegenen Restaurant bestellen – kommt nur leider telefonisch nicht durch. Nach Hensslers fulminantem Udo Lindenberg-Musikauftritt kommt der TV-Meteorologe Sven Plöger hinzu. Er verspricht Ina Müller, ihr ein Wetterhoch mit obszönen Namen zu schenken, und klärt über das Wesen der berühmten norddeutschen Sturmfrisur auf. Erster Musikgast dieses Abends ist Johannes Oerding, der mit Gitarre, Stimme und im Duett mit Ina Müller einen seiner neuen Songs vorstellt. Den Abend beschließt die Band ‘Jewdyssee’, die jiddische Klassiker mit modernen Club- und Popsounds verbindet. Da wippen auch die 20 Herren des Wilhelmsburger Shanty-Chors die ‘Tampentrekker’ vergnügt vor den Fenstern des ‘Schellfischposten’ mit, wo sie wie immer bei Wind und Wetter auf ihre Einsätze warten. 14 Personen bestreiten das Publikum – mehr passen nicht rein bei ‘Inas Nacht’, aber die dürfen dafür mit Bierdeckel-Fragen ein bisschen mithelfen. Und alle werden wieder bestens versorgt von der Kneipenwirtin Frau Müller – nicht verwandt und verschwägert mit Ina. Klingt leicht chaotisch? Soll es auch!


Zentralrat der Juden in Deustchland – JEWDYSSEE „5773“ im Kulturprogramm 2013 wieder mit dabei!

Jewdyssee feiert den „Yiddish Way of Life im 21. Jahrhundert“! Leadsängerin ist Maya Saban, die schon mit Künstlern wie Lena oder Xavier Naidoo zusammen arbeitete und sich mit zwei Alben und zusammen mit Cosmo Klein den Top-Ten- Hit “Das alles ändert nichts daran” in der deutschen Musikszene einen Namen machte. Als Deutsch-Israelin will sie nun ihre doppelte Nationalität musikalisch ausleben. Beeinflusst von den Barry Sisters und unter dem Motto „back to the roots“ mündeten diese Bemühungen in das 2012 erschienene Album 5773. Jiddischen Traditionals wie „Bei mir bist Du schejn“, „Tumbalalaika“ oder „Hava Nagila“ , Kinderliedern und Liedern aus der jüdischen Welt wird hier ein neuer Anstrich verpasst.

Dem Zeitgeist entsprechend frischen Pop-Klänge und Elektro-Beats den traditionellen Sound auf, so dass die Tracks auch beim Feiern die Club-Jugend in Tanzstimmung versetzen. Aber auch der Swing-Begeisterte findet hier seinen Geschmack wieder: Swing-Beat, Trompeten- und Klarinetten-Sounds geben dem Ganzen den letzten Schliff. Orient meets Okzident, Mittlerer Osten trifft Ostblock und Balalaika meets Clubsounds!

Weitere Informationen:

Hinweise: Diese Veranstaltung wird vom Zentralrat mit einer festen Summe bezuschusst. Es fallen weitere Kosten an abhängig von Bandgröße, Programm und Technik. Bezüglich Demo-CD, Terminanfrage, Zusatzkosten wenden Sie sich bitte direkt an Maya Saban, eMail:


Between a Star and a Hoodie

Street Art Near Warschauer Bridge

I feel like a sinner confessing to a priest. I apologize for my blogging neglect; it has been nearly two months since my last update.

Previously I was discussing my plans for a move to Berlin. I have started and promptly ended a new entry about my stay in Germany a dozen times. The problem was not that I had nothing to say, but rather, was what I had to say particularly Jewish, or the same ramblings of any American 20-something doing the whole ‘globe-trotting’ thing? Was the star around my neck the driving force of my experiences or the Bruce Springsteen hoodie clinging to my body with pride?

Currently I am in the Netherlands, and with distance comes the possibility to unpack certain scenes that happened in Berlin that a non-Jewish American or other traveler would have experienced differently, or not at all:

* My first shower in Germany. I was seven when my mother tried to explain the horrors of the Holocaust. It was always her policy not to sugar-coat things in baby talk (but how can genocide be sugar-coated anyway?), and she said that the Nazis (or did she say Germans back then?) killed the Jews in showers of poison, instead of water. She probably explained the whole history leading up to that ending, but all I retained from her lesson was the poison water. The next time I turned the faucet on to take a shower, I stood there for minutes, staring at the water. How do you know if it’s poison or not? My mother screamed from outside the bathroom, “Do you think I own ComEd (the utility company)?” My mother’s disapproval was more real to me than evil ghost Nazis in our pipes, and I promptly jumped into the path of the water. Fast-forward nearly two decades: I stood outside a shower in a town called Neuenhagen, outside of Berlin. I knew the water wasn’t Zyklon B and that, regardless of the NPD story on the front page of the local newspaper I read that morning in the breakfast nook decorated with medieval-style woodcarvings of saints, no Nazis were operating the piping system. But it felt weird. Taking a shower in Germany. Normal events bringing up atrocities in my mind. I finished with the shower and brushed my teeth. It felt like brushing my teeth.

* Finding this book in my host family’s bookshelf:

Needs more Natalie Portman, less of this guy.



Altneugroove: JEWDYSSEE im Interview mit Itamar Treves-Tchelet



Kosher frogs’ legs, or Israeli diplomacy

Recently, every time Israel has come under withering international approbation – usually for its settlement activity or rounds of retaliation against terrorists – the government reverts to the following line: “Loh naim, loh nora,” which translates loosely into: It’s not pleasant, but it’s not awful either.

When we lose a UN vote by 138 to 9, it’s not pleasant, but it’s not terrible either. We always lose UN votes. It could have been 147 to zero. But even then, it would be uncomfortable, but not catastrophic. When England, France, Sweden and Australia summon our ambassadors to read them the riot act, it’s not pleasant, but it’s also not so terrible. They could have recalled their ambassadors from Tel-Aviv, or even expelled our ambassadors. That would have been awful. But you know what? Awful is still OK; awful is not disastrous.

It’s not only international criticism though. Even internal reports that criticize the government’s handling of, say, road accidents, fires, school exam results, are all met with “loh naim, loh nora.”

It’s not great, but it’s not too bad. In other words, it could be worse. In other words, it can always be worse, so this is no big deal. It sure feels like it’s getting worse, but things really are not so bad.

According to this thinking, when things get worse, they still won’t be really bad. When things get worse, and things really seem to be getting worse here, the government will say “it’s bad, but not terrible.”

“Listen, things are really bad, but they’re not catastrophic. OK, ok, things are catastrophic, but they’re not disastrous. Wow, this is a disaster, but you know what, we’ve had it worse, so it’s really not so bad. We overcame Pharaoh, we’ll overcome this too. It’s bad, but it’s not the end of the world. The sky falling is bad? Sure but it could be worse: it could be the end of the world.” READ MORE


Barack Shlomo Obama – A truly great President!

One fascinating reason to be proud of in the Jewish world these days, is the fact that still the vast majority, nearly ¾ of American Jews declare in surveys that they will vote for Obama.

The rightwing media has tried everything to prevent that. Endless articles were written about Barack HUSSEIN Obama, being a secret muslim and enemy of the Jewish state. You have to imagine that, in many countries antisemitism still leads people to call their political enemies „secret Jews“, and the fortunately small rightwing fraction in the Jewish world, and the unfortunately large rightwing fraction among Israeli Jews have nothing better to do than using the methods of „antisemitism“ themselves as soon as they get the chance to. Obama has some kind of Muslim connection, so the haters think he must have double loyality, he is fooling America, it is all written in the Protocols of the Elders of Mecca.

And why? Because he showed respect to the Muslim world in his Cairo speech and he didn´t declare openly that he wants to start Armageddon by attacking Iran immediately. What these people forget is the following:

(Numbers and stats from

Obama provided Israel with the largest amount of American military aid in U.S. history, including:



Hipster or Hassidic? :-)