MKs take to YouTube to say 'Shana Tova'

Politicians post online videos – some with thinly veiled political messages – in honor of Rosh Hashanna.

Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstei (photo credit: Courtesy)
Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstei
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Since "Shana Tova" cards became passé long ago, MKs have found a new way to wish Israelis a sweet new year in the days before Rosh Hashanna – by making YouTube videos.
Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein filmed his New Year message in front of the "lone oak," which symbolizes the Gush Etzion region, where he resides.
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The oak, Edelstein explains in the video clip, was the only remnant of the Jewish towns in the area following the 1948 War of Independence, but after the Six-Day War, settlers built their homes near the tree.
Edelstein wished viewers that in the next year they will remember the lone oak and make sure not to uproot settlements.
Speaking from his office in the Knesset, MK Ofir Akunis (Likud) wished party members a sweet, healthy new year, and promised to continue working "in the spirit of our party's leader Menachem Begin," which he said includes "nationalist legislation, social sensitivity and a free market."
"Israel Beiteinu wishes you a good year," faction chairwoman Faina Kirschenbaum's video begins. In the clip, Kirschenbaum sits in her living room with a bowl of apples on the table and wishes viewers a year of "growth, hope, love and lots of unity."
"In these days, our strength can be found in our unity, like a pomegranate whose many seeds can be found under one peel. We need to protect the peel uniting us," she explained.
Kirschenbaum also wished for captive soldier Gilad Schalit to be brought home safely.
MK Meir Sheetrit (Kadima), a professed lover of technology and gadgets, said in his YouTube clip that he hopes Israel finds peace in the coming year.
Sitting in his Knesset office, Sheetrit wished the citizens "a good, happy year, where we will be healthy and finally solve the social crises."
Kadima MK Rachel Adato wished viewers a happy, healthy new year while standing at Ramon Crater.
"We are at a crossroads in diplomatic and social matters. We must work together and act for the good of the State of Israel and the people of Israel," she said.
MK Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) said in his YouTube video that Jewish people must not only look forward to the New Year, but examine the year that is ending.
"We saw Tunisia and Egypt crashing, and all that is happening in Syria. A whole world collapsed like a card castle, and we had the opportunity to say that the Jewish People are returning to its birthright, and will not leave its land under any threats from paper tigers, like we saw last year," Ben-Ari said from his office, with a picture of his teacher, Rabbi Meir Kahane, in the background.

"The redemption of Israel depends only on the Rock of Israel and our faith in our values and traditions, and not on flesh and blood that keeps disappointing us and bringing our downfall," he explained.
Finally, Ben-Ari wished viewers health, happiness, and success in educating their children with Jewish values.
Meanwhile, Israel Radio conducted a survey in honor of the New Year, and discovered that the Israeli musical artist most-beloved by MKs is Kaveret. Israel's representatives in the 1974 Eurovision competition, who are also called "Poogy," are best known for their humorous songs.
The radio station plans to have MKs choose songs and tell personal stories about Israeli music during Sukkot, beginning with Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin at 10 a.m. on October 17.