|Barack Obama meeting Elie Wiesel (wiki)|
So back to Israel and Meretz. What is the party doing in the run-up to polling day? For one thing, Meretz has started firing broadsides against the weird new Frankenstein's monster that has resulted from the electoral merger of Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu. Lieberman, Beiteinu leader, is the "Israeli Putin", warns the Meretz PR campaign Not everyone in Likud is happy with the merger either, it seems. Nonetheless, the fusion has been approved and Israel's political landscape has suddenly altered.
|Meretz convention, Tel Aviv, 2011 - photo: Nir Kafri, Haaretz|
Meretz's own appearance may also change after primary elections set for 11 November (this coming Sunday). It is good to hear of the possible return of former MK Avshalom Vilan, as well as Mossi Raz, who gave such a brilliant speech to Meretz UK not long ago. Regrettably Meretz has had problems meeting the wishes of important Arab supporters. Recent news suggests a 7th place slot for the impressive Isawi Farij from Kafr Qassem. But if Meretz maintains its current tally of just three MKs after 22 January, neither he nor three other top figures will make it to the Knesset.
Clearly the more MKs are elected, the greater the variety Meretz can show on their list, and the happier everyone will be! Realistically, Meretz has a mountain to climb to bring in newer votes. All that said, optimism is riding high. Maybe the party can promote a clear programme based on peace and social justice. Then they can convince voters that they present an alternative to the failed policies of existing parties and the ethereal promises of newfangled entities. More to follow!