Israel is aflame. Figuratively.
It began weeks ago, with doctors protesting their low salaries; then the nurses joined in complaining there are not enough staff positions to cope with overcrowded wards. Then a national campaign began because of the high price of dairy products, and that soon spread to other consumerables. Recently “the students” (a wide-ranging designation if ever there was one) began a campaign to achieve affordable housing. They were joined by “young couples”, and then by single mothers, working mothers, the aged, the disabled, the unemployed – all yelling for price reductions, lower taxes, affordable health care, affordable housing.
The protests have been largely a-political, although it didn’t take long for politicians to spot the niche. Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu is taking flak from all sides, even though the situation – a result of years of social justice errors and geo-political issues – is far from his making.
Israel’s economy is strong. Israel recovered quickly from the world financial crisis, and real estate prices have remained stable (part of the problem apparently). Israel’s currency stands up well to market forces and unemployment is at an all-time low. Tourism is at an all-time high, restaurants are packed, hotels booked...More >>