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Tuesday, February 28, 2006 


Dear Benny Elon, Effi Eitam, Zevulun Orlev, et al,

I am an Israeli voter who would very much like to vote for you. However, if you're going to advertise the wrong way, I may have to reconsider.

I was on my way to Tel Aviv to go to a social group today. And what did I see along the highway as I approached, but what appears to be some kind of attempt to attack the Likud in a rather imbecile way, by trying to imply that Benjamin Netanyahu is as corrupt as the now convicted Omri Sharon is. Most interesting though is that, for ads that feature such faces as Ehud Olmert's, Netanyahu's, Silvan Shalom's, and Tzahi Hanegbi's, it doesn't seem to feature such people as Amir Peretz. How odd, because I'd think that he'd be someone you'd want to take issue with as well.

Actually, what bothers me is that it seems as though you're trying to attack Netanyahu by resorting to some rather absurd implications and analogies that really don't make much sense, considering that Netanyahu has never been corrupt in the way that the Sharon family's been.

If you think you're going to really impress upon anyone by making it look like you're showing off petty grudges, well, I don't think so. You certainly aren't impressing upon me, that's for sure. If you ask me, this is exactly what led to your failure back in 1999, by making almost the exact same mistakes that Newt Gingrich made when he was House speaker, and resorted to attacking the Boy President in the Republican campaign for his scandal, much more than addressing public issues that the electorate would've appreciated hearing more. As a result, many were alienated, even in Israel, and I'm worried that it could have a damaging effect on the elections even now.

I want to make this perfectly clear. To gain a good following, you need to stress what's really at stake here, that being the threat of terrorism on our very doorstep. And if all you're going to do is resort to some stupid grudge match, when unity is needed even with competing parties, then I can't say you're doing very well there, now are you?

I have a friend whose younger sister was expelled from her home in Gaza last August, who's very cross now and reluctant to vote. And if you're going to start tearing down the other national parties out of a grudge, then I'm going to have a hard time convincing her to vote for you, as I'd like to. I wrote a post earlier about how unity is positive, and another one explaining why it'd be bad to throw away one's vote, and it pains me to sit here and bust my butt having to write another one. One of my brothers has likened you to a bunch of circus clowns because of what you're doing in advertising, and if I find that this is what your television ads are going to look like, meaning, that they're no better than they were back in 1999 and 2003, then I think I'm going to vote, just like my brother, for the Likud instead.

Now I could be overreacting, BUT, what if you end up costing the national camp the elections thanks to a cheapskate stunt like this? And even if Kadima doesn't get elected, what if the Labor party, which has all but slipped beneath the radar, dreadful party that they are, given the disaster they first led to, ended up being elected instead? Did that ever occur to you? (See also earlier post about Amir Peretz.)

There are, I'm sure, a whole bunch of other, meatier issues you could advertise about, including security issues, the horrendous and tragic events caused by the Oslo agreement, the bogus demographics for the Arab population, and even the need for better relations between religious and secular residents. But what I've seen this week is anything but that. And it's gotten me very unpleasantly annoyed, I hate to say. If you're going to go the Gingrich route, I'd say you're going to go in just that direction, which is to say - out of the Knesset and back home.

If you'd please kindly modify your campaign to something more constructive and less imbecile, as seems to be the case just now, I'll most certainly apologize for my outburst. But if you keep this up, I'm going to just have to go vote for the Likud instead (and Moshe Kahalon sure looks like a real find in the political field). Let's have attention to the issues and not to personalities.

If anyone's interested in helping out to try and convince the National Union to kindly modify their campaign ads, here's their English website for starters.

National Union's E-Mail:

National Union's Telephone number:

For real success in the elections, that's why a meat-and-potatoes campaign devoid of any silly grudge matches would help out tremendously.


I agree with you 120%!!! I personally intend to vote for the Likud, because I think that the NU will not get enough seats to be in the next Knesset, unity or no. But I do not go around trying to convince others to vote for Likud by badmouthing the National Union.

This is a stupid mistake.

Very well said.

Thanks. It's time for the National Union's leaders to start growing up, and they can start by focusing their campaign on the real issues of the day. I should hope that they'll start making some improvements, and soon, if they don't want people to think that they're buffoons.

No doubt, great post. I couldn't have said it better myself.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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