Miriam Peretz urges sides to form unity government

"I wish that Peretz had been the candidate for prime minister."

By DAVID GEFFEN
October 7, 2019 22:37
2 minute read.
Miriam Peretz (L) shakes hands with Israel President Reuven Rivlin (R).

Miriam Peretz (L) shakes hands with Israel President Reuven Rivlin (R) during the Israel Prize ceremony in Jerusalem on Independence Day, April 19th, 2018.. (photo credit: GPO)

When I was a teenager in Atlanta, Georgia, I watched Meet the Press on Sundays. I knew nothing about the news, so maybe these panelists helped me to be a little more informed. In the last few years, I have watched Meet the Press, or whatever it is called in Hebrew. One reason I put it on my post-Shabbat viewing list is because you hear news that is not in the newspapers on Sunday. Second, it is a lot of fun. Watching educated individuals, men and women, screaming at each other is a big joke. The worst is the moderator who cannot control those who constantly break in to someone else’s conversation.

On Saturday night, October 5, I turned on the TV to see the program. A different woman, who deals with the Knesset, was the moderator for the evening. She announced that her first guest was Miriam Peretz, winner of the Israel Prize who, sadly, lost two of her children killed in battle. Wonder of all wonders, she had been invited for the interview so she could speak to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz on the air about how important it was to form a unity government.

I saw Golda Meir z”l negotiating, but she was a politician. Other Israeli women have tried to negotiate. The owner of Bank HaPoalim has not urged the politicians to make peace and work together. A noted Azrieli woman has not tried anything. I guess Dr. Miriam Adelson is trying to do so because she owns Israel Hayom.

What thrilled me about Peretz’s interview was that it made sense. Here is a woman who has suffered two major tragedies and has rebounded in a way few could have anticipated. She was trying to talk sense to these two leaders with giant egos. She emphasized that the Israeli people indicated through their votes that they wanted a unity government to try to deal with their most difficult issues. A key problem, which we have not felt the brunt of yet, is the enormous deficit. Ms. Peretz did not address that directly but, as an educated and sensitive woman of the people, she realizes how the poor are suffering. And Holocaust survivors, the elderly, the disabled. In time, school budgets will also be cut, and the money for development of all this country’s new devices will be reduced.

I wish that Peretz had been the candidate for prime minister. Like great women of our people in the past, my favorites being the biblical Deborah and Hannah, she has leadership ability, and care and concern for the people. Nothing can faze her because as a person, she has faced the worst but still moved ahead in a poignant manner. She is a realist, whereas our political leaders are dreamers who do not know how to make their dreams come true. They are just too full of themselves.

She stressed that Yom Kippur is at hand, when we seek forgiveness from one another and from God. Her hope was that this fast day and its impact would influence our “leaders” so we can have unity, which could lead to peace in all its many forms.
My fellow Israelis, Miriam Peretz means business.


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