When Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman retook his ministerial oath
in the Knesset on November 11, 2013, he was not just returning to his
powerful position in the Foreign Ministry. The deputy prime minister was
also reclaiming his place as the most influential person in Israel
after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
Less than a week after
his acquittal on charges of fraud and breach of trust by a Jerusalem
court, it marked the end of a grueling legal battle for Liberman. “After
17 years, I’m putting this chapter in my life behind me,” Liberman
said. “I missed him in the government,” said Netanyahu.
name, besmirched by the legal system and the local media, had finally
been cleared. Liberman, who was born in Kishinev, Moldova, in 1958,
changed his first name from Yvet when his family made aliya in 1978.
serving in the IDF, he famously worked as a bouncer during his BA
studies in international relations and political science at the Hebrew
University of Jerusalem. In 2013, the ex-bouncer bounced back.
as a tough but charming diplomat, the straight-shooting Liberman is
respected by friends and foes alike for telling it like it is. A
diplomatic hawk and social liberal, he is now in a position to
significantly impact the coming year in Israel both on the international
stage and domestically. For that reason, The Jerusalem Post has invited
Liberman to be a keynote speaker at its annual conference in New York
on April 6, 2014.
Read more person of the year articles:
Person of the year in Middle East diplomacy: Hassan Rouhani
Person of the year in International Affairs: Denise Williams and the South African press
Person of the year in Israeli diplomacy: Shimon Peres
Person of the year in the IDF: The C4i Corps