Défense et Illustration de Jacques Chirac

October 31, 2009

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Une tribune de David Berger

Le renvoi de Jacques Chirac devant la justice pour “détournements de biens publics” et “abus de confiance” dans le cadre de l’affaire des chargés de mission de la Ville de Paris est non seulement superflu, mais aussi et surtout moralement douteux, eu égard au fait que les délits reprochés remontent à plus de vingt ans et que tous les partis politiques ont eu recours à ces pratiques.

La justice devrait faire le procès de la classe politique entière au lieu de s’acharner sur un homme qui a servi la France de manière exemplaire pendant plus de quarante ans.

C’est une constante bien française, la nation décapite le Père, celui qui incarne le mieux ce qu’elle est, en érigeant l’échafaud en place publique; observez la chose, elle est invariablement la même: la tête du monarque, bon, débonnaire, doit être donnée aux chacals qui n’en feront qu’une bouchée : Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité. Comme le disait le Général De Gaulle: “Les Français sont des veaux”. Jacques Chirac s’en sortira, c’est une question d’honneur pour la France. Souvenons-nous des années Mitterrand, des suicides, des scandales personnels et des dépenses royales, corruption et république bananière à tirelarigotOui, il ira devant les juges, il passera quelques nuits blanches, mais il se relèvera, tête haute.

L’ancien président de la République et maire de Paris Jacques Chirac s’exprimait il y a près de deux ans sur tous les chefs d’accusation calomnieuse lancés à son encontre. Sa tribune parue dans le quotidien Le Monde peut être lue ici.

NDLR: Les textes et essais publiés sur HIRAM7 REVIEW n’engagent que leurs auteurs et ne reflètent pas nécessairement l’opinion de la rédaction.

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Alan Poseners Kolumne: Henryk M. Broders belangloser PR-Coup

October 29, 2009

Der britisch-deutsche Journalist Alan Posener kommentiert wöchentlich das Zeitgeschehen in Politik, Gesellschaft, Wirtschaft und Kultur für HIRAM7 REVIEW.

Von Alan Posener
Die Welt / Welt am Sonntag  / HIRAM7 REVIEW

Es ist schon erstaunlich: Wenn man in Deutschland eine Stellungnahme zum Holocaust braucht, ruft man die Agentur Rent-a-Jew an und bekommt je nach politischer Präferenz einen Juden zugeteilt, obwohl der Holocaust die Juden nicht mehr angeht als die Arier; weniger sogar, denn das Klärungsbedürftige am Holocaust liegt nicht auf der Opfer-, sondern auf der Täterseite.

Wenn es aber um Henryk M. Broders Kandidatur für den Posten des Präsidenten des Zentralrats der Juden gibt, dann haben plötzlich alle Gojim selbst eine Meinung, obwohl der Zentralrat eigentlich nur die Juden etwas angeht.

Und diese Meinung lautet: Gut, dass der Kerl den Zentralrat aufmischt.
Das sollte einen stutzig machen.

Wenn der Zentralrat, wie Henryk meint, so ungefährlich und gestrig ist, warum sind alle Gojim so froh, dass Broder ihm zeigen will, wo der Hammer hängt?

Überhaupt: Warum tun alle so, als habe Henryks Kandidatur etwas zu tun mit einer Krise des Zentralrats, wo sie doch nur etwas zu tun hat mit einer Lebenskrise Henryk M. Broders?

Ich habe mit dem Zentralrat genauso wenig zu tun wie Henryk. Weniger, denn pro forma könnte er etwas damit zu tun haben, wenn er wollte, was er aber nicht will. Ich nicht.

Ich stelle nur eine Frage: Im Spiegel hat Henryk seine Selbsteinschätzung wiederholt, er sei der „Pausenclown“ der Deutschen. Das stimmt, und diese Rolle hat er sich hart erarbeitet.

Soll der Sprecher der Juden in Deutschland ein Clown sein? Wer könnte das wollen? Wem würde das nutzen? Außer Henryk, meine ich.

Die in HIRAM7 REVIEW veröffentlichten Essays und Kommentare geben nicht grundsätzlich den Standpunkt der Redaktion wieder.


Sumit Lal: The ubiquitous Indian

October 28, 2009

Our friend from New Delhi, Sumit Lal, former Director and General Manager at ECCO INDIA, and currently Business Adviser at ECCO Asia Pacific Limited, has just started his own blog.

Please check it out here.


Earl Shugerman’s Corner: Life’s little pleasures in Israel

October 27, 2009

 Earl Shugerman brings every week a serie of stories about Anglo-Saxon immigrants to Israel. This project is aimed to promote a more realistic view of life in Israel.

Yesterday, a group of my Anglo friends and I were sitting at Lias Books sharing ideas about entertainment for the weekend. Israelis are avid readers and my favorite pastime is reading detective novels and attending book clubs. I am a particular fan of James Patterson.

Israelis also love movies. Haifa, my hometown has 22 theaters that show movies in most major languages and for all ages. Popcorn, hot dogs and cokes are usually available, but often at inflated prices. The ticket costs are comparable to those in America. Most movie theaters are located in malls, and allow the audiences to enjoy cafes, window shopping, and other mall amenities. Many cafes have outdoor terraces due to the balmy climate.

Cinema King: The Cinemall at Lev Hamifratz, Haifa boasts a spectacular 23 screens.

The Cinemall at Lev Hamifratz, Haifa boasts a spectacular 23 screens.

Very sadly, the revered American pastime of the Sunday afternoon drive is not part of Israeli entertainment. Driving in Israel is at best a rugged adventure. Israeli drivers are not known for their patience and in many parts of the country parking is a real nightmare. By contrast, the public transportation in the country is wonderful. In many places, bus and train services are readily available and inexpensive.

The entertainment of Haifa surely showcases a wide range of fascinating things you can do here, and in many cities in Israel. Among the large number of things to do in Haifa, you would probably first look for some eating joints in the city. Dining is one of the best forms of Haifa entertainment, with a large number of places offering everything from French, Italian, Chinese, Continental and the traditional Middle Eastern dishes. Located in some of the most convenient spots and serving delicious dishes, the popular restaurants in Haifa are surely a must try. The joy of international dining in Israel is enhanced by the number of nationalities and languages spoken by diners and staff in most houses of cuisine. One Saturday night, my American companion, Linda and I counted seven languages while dining at our favorite cafe. We strolled along the Haifa beachfront after dinner.

After a wholesome meal at the restaurants you can also check out the scintillating nightlife of Haifa. Wonderful ambiance and great music, combined with the liquor of your choice will surely give you an excuse to party the night away. Shopping in Haifa is great. You can buy fashionable clothes, hand-blown glass, silver, enamel, pottery and also gold jewelry. Entertainment in Haifa thus includes the major shopping zones of the city on Masada Streets and also the Panorama Center. Many American products are sold in major malls.

The theaters in Haifa are popularly endorsed by both indigenous folk and tourists. They showcase the best of the local culture and traditions. Thus the major places of interest in Haifa also include the performance halls like the Haifa Auditorium and the Haifa Municipal Theater. Other than live theater, they are also known for hosting dance recitals, musical performances, orchestra and many more.

For the family, entertainment in Haifa is not complete without Sports and Recreation. Full of fun and pleasure, the activities like tennis, bowling, basketball, skating, football, fencing, diving hiking, biking, swimming will provide you with a lot to indulge yourself in.

Israel is a small country about the size of New Jersey.  The three major cities of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa are relatively close. A road trip running north to south can embrace them all in an hour and one half. My friend Helen commented yesterday that; “it is still amazing to me that I can visit the holy sites in Jerusalem, take a short swim in the Sea of Galilee, and dine in Tel Aviv in the same day!”

Israelis watch more television and play more video games per- capita than any nation in the world. I am writing this article at the University of Haifa. My computer neighbors asked me to join them in a few hands of video poker! “This is my favorite pastime”, exclaimed David, a young American Oleh! “What about your work?”, I joked. He laughed in a good natured manner and drew a losing hand.

Welcome to modern Israel!

About the author: Earl Shugerman is a retired American Government public relations specialist,  currently spokesperson in Haifa for The Jewish Agency and a writer specializing in interfaith relations. He has worked together with the Catholic and Southern Baptist Movements, the Reformed Jewish Movement and Muslim groups in interfaith activities.


Start-Up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle

October 24, 2009

The Story of Israel's Economic Miracle

“The West needs innovation; Israel’s got it,” write Dan Senor and Saul Singer, authors of Start-Up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle. They argue that the Israeli economic model, based on innovation, can help the West, in particular, “get out of its economic hole.”

Start-Up Nation addresses the trillion-dollar question: How is it that Israel – a country of 7.1 million people, only sixty years old, surrounded by enemies, in a constant state of war since its founding, with no natural resources – produces more start-up companies than large, peaceful, and stable nations like Japan, China, India, Korea, Canada, and the United Kingdom?

Drawing on examples from the country’s foremost inventors and investors, geopolitical experts Dan Senor and Saul Singer describe how Israel’s adversity-driven culture fosters a unique combination of innovative and entrepreneurial intensity.

As the authors argue, Israel is not just a country but a comprehensive state of mind. Whereas Americans emphasize decorum and exhaustive preparation, Israelis put chutzpah first. “When an Israeli entrepreneur has a business idea, he will start it that week,” one analyst put it. At the geopolitical level, Senor and Singer dig in deeper to show why Israel’s policies on immigration, R&D, and military service have been key factors in the country’s rise – providing insight into why Israel has more companies on the NASDAQ than those from all of Europe, Korea, Japan, Singapore, China, and India combined.

So much has been written about the Middle East, but surprisingly little is understood about the story and strategy behind Israel’s economic growth. As Start-Up Nation shows, there are lessons in Israel’s example that apply not only to other nations, but also to individuals seeking to build a thriving organization. As the U.S. economy seeks to reboot its can-do spirit, there’s never been a better time to look at this remarkable and resilient nation for some impressive, surprising clues.

Reviews & Endorsements

“An eye-opening look at a side of Israel that most people never think about.” (The Week)

“There is a great deal for America to learn from the very impressive Israeli entrepreneurial model—beginning with a culture of leadership and risk management. Start-Up Nation is a playbook for every CEO who wants to develop the next generation of corporate leaders.” Tom Brokaw, special correspondent for NBC News, author of The Greatest Generation

“Senor and Singer’s experience in government, in business, and in journalism—and especially on the ground in the Middle East—come to life in their illuminating, timely, and often surprising analysis.” George Stephanopoulos, host of This Week, ABC News

“In the midst of the chaos of the Middle East, there’s a remarkable story of innovation. Start-Up Nation is filled with inspiring insights into what’s behind Israel’s dynamic economy. It is a timely book and a much-needed celebration of the entrepreneurial spirit.” Meg Whitman, former president and CEO of eBay

“Senor and Singer highlight some important lessons and sound instruction for countries struggling to enter the 21st century. An edifying, cogent report, as apolitical as reasonably possible, about homemade nation building.” Kirkus Reviews

“The authors ground their analysis in case studies and interviews with some of Israel’s most brilliant innovators to make this a rich and insightful read not just for business leaders and policymakers but for anyone curious about contemporary Israeli culture.” Publishers Weekly

To order the book, click here.


Alan Posener’s Column: The Open Society and its Trends

October 23, 2009

by Alan Posener
Die Welt / Welt am Sonntag  / HIRAM7 REVIEW

Something’s going on in Europe, and I don’t like it.

There’s the future German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle’s refusal to even listen to the question of a BBC correspondent, unless it’s put to him in German:

There’s the BBC giving the British National Party’s Nick Griffin a nationwide TV platform for his racist and anti-Semitic views.

And there’s people not only defending German Central Banker Thilo Sarrazin’s right to make racist comments, but denying that they are racist and demanding a muzzle for people who dare to say they are racist.

You only have to look at the comments on Youtube and elsewhere to realize what it is that is going on here: the political and chattering classes have abandoned the rules governing their chatter; nationalism, racism and intolerance in general are being allowed back into polite society after spending the past 40 years out in the cold.

Political correctness – that great civilizer – is dead. Multiculturalism is under siege. And the ban on anti-Semitism – which the Catholic Church has already lifted by welcoming back the anti-Semitic Pius Brotherhood into its ranks – will soon be as worthless as the paper on which Sir Karl Popper’s great book on the Open Society was written.

I mention Karl Popper, because in the age of Totalitarianism he confronted a vexing question of democracy head-on: was the open society bound by its own philosophical, legal and political parameters to tolerate the propaganda of its enemies?

Popper said no: there was no reason to tolerate intolerance; no reason to grant freedom to the enemies of freedom; there should be no openness towards the enemies of openness. People who want one man, one vote one time should not – as they were in Gaza – be allowed to contest elections. Democracy is more important than freedom; more important than truth; more important than justice – or any one of the multitude of ideas, concepts, slogans and ideals in whose name one could (and people have tried to) suspend democracy.

It’s always the enemies of tolerance who chafe at this seeming intolerance of democracy. One shouldn’t let oneself be fooled. People say, “If you stop people from saying what Sarrazin said, you are denying 80 percent of the population a voice.”

Well, if 80 percent of the population are racist, which I don’t believe for a moment, but I’m saying if, then fuck them and there’s all the more reason to keep a tight lid on what is said by public figures, isn’t there?

Popper didn’t call his book “The Majority Rules”, he called it “The Open Society”. Even 99 percent of the population don’t have the right to dismantle the open society and replace it with a society in which privileges are awarded or denied according to race, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation or social background.

That’s what Europe has been about this past half-century. Let’s keep it that way.


Earl Shugerman’s Corner: Hannah’s Aliyah to Israel

October 18, 2009

Earl Shugerman brings every week a serie of stories about Anglo-Saxon immigrants to Israel. This project is aimed to promote a more realistic view of life in Israel.

Aliyah is the word that describes the return of the Jewish People from the exile in the Diaspora back to the Land of Israel. The word Aliyah is derived from the verb “laalot” which means “to go up”, or “to ascend” in a positive spiritual sense. A person who makes Aliyah is called an Oleh, meaning “one who goes up”. Making Aliyah heralds a new dawn. People redefine their aspirations and focus on a positive future. Finding a meaningful and loving relationship is an inherent feature of Israeli culture. As Hannah discovered, help was close at hand.

When I came to Haifa for a family Seder in 2006, I decided I could retire here.  I had wanted to retire for some time but didn’t know where.  I had lived in Massachusetts for 28 years but couldn’t imagine spending my winters there as a retiree.  When I got to Haifa, a very big light bulb came on!

I had a very good life in the States but there was one goal I hadn’t been able to reach.  I wanted to meet a kind, intelligent, sexy, fun Jewish male around my age and for years I put this goal on my “top goals list” but never reached it.

When I got to Haifa, one of the first things I did was to attend services at Or Hadash, a reform synagogue in my neighbourhood.  I met a very kind Israeli woman called Pnina there and she made me feel very welcome and introduced me to many members of the congregation. I immediately felt very comfortable and “at home” and Or Hadash became my shul.

One day Pnina and I were looking over at the male congregation and every man I asked about was married. She asked me if I wanted to meet someone and I said yes.  She arranged for me to meet the father of one of her friends – an Australian widower, a year older than me. We had a blind date and continued seeing each other on an irregular basis. After seven months of getting to know each other, we began a more serious relationship and now, just over a year later, we are very happy doing many things together. He has introduced me to his children and grandchildren and has met my mother, sister, brother-in-law and various friends. In October we are planning to travel to Australia together to welcome his son’s first child there.

I was already enjoying my Aliyah here and meeting Shmuel was the “icing on the cake.”