The Knesset marked two very different events today: 65 years since the victory over Nazi Germany and National Student Day. The Knesset also chose today an Arab, MK Magadela (Labor), as the Knesset’s 9th Deputy Speaker, despite the National Union’s objections. The Knesset now has 3 deputies who are not Jewish, MKs Walhaba and Tibi being the others. Only 20 MKs chose to participate in the one minute speech segment and attendance was light throughout the short day that lasted about 3 hours.

One Minute Speeches

Seven of the twenty MKs chose to discuss the victory over the Nazis, while five Arab MKs chose to talk about Arab issues.

MK Wilf (Labor), MK Tirosh (Kadima), MK Orbach (U.T.J.), MK Levi-Abuksis (Y.B.), MK Boaim (Kadima), MK Micheali (Shas) and MK Agbriah (Chadash) all discussed the significance of the victory over Nazi Germany 65 years ago. MK Baraka (Chadash) and MK Magadela (Labor) talked about Israel joining the OECD despite the tough position of Arabs in the country. MK Ganem (Ra’am-Ta’al) and MK Zachalka (Balad) blasted the government for supporting the recent arrests of Israeli Arabs accused of being spies saying it was unjust. MK Zoabi (Balad) talked about the discrimination against Arab students.

MK Zoaretz (Kadima) talked about the recent wave of robbing and murdering elderly people. MK Bensimon (Labor) talked about the national student day. MK Shai (Kadima) talked about his recent trip to the states and reported that American Jews are worried about the relations between Israel and the U.S. The second issue that worries them is the conversion issue. MK Ben-Ari (N.U.) gave a dvar torah on parshat Bamidbar. MK Mula (Kadima) talked about Jerusalem day and how Jerusalem became the poorest city in the country. MK Ariel (N.U.) talked about the settlement freezes ending on Sukkot and the possibility of authorizing building in Jerusalem in honor of Jerusalem Day tomorrow. MK Eldad (N.U.) talked about the end of the settlement freeze and accused the Arabs of destroying Jewish archeological items on the temple mount. MK Levin (Likud) talked about his recent visit to Chevron’s Jewish community and criticized the illegal construction of Arab homes.

Vote on House Committee’s recommendation regarding the appointment of Deputy Speaker of the Knesset

House Committee Chairman Levin presented the nomination of MK Magadla (Labor) who was chosen to replace former Labor MK Tamir as the 9th Deputy Speaker.

The selection was passed by a vote of 28-2. MKs Ben-Ari and Eldad voted against.

Special meeting to mark 65 years since the victory over Nazi Germany

Speaker of the House Rivlin, Prime-minister Netanyahu and Opposition Leader Livni all gave speeches marking the very special day.

Minister Landver (Y.B.), Minister and holocaust survivor Peled (Likud), and Arab MK Bareka (Chadash) also spoke in honor of the day.

National Student Day

Speaker Rivlin gave a speech on the importance of the day.

MK Miller (Y.B.), chairman of the student lobby in Knesset and the second youngest Knesset member, spoke proudly of all the laws he successfully passed in the Knesset, including the Student Bill.

Opposition Leader Livni acccused the Likud of voting against student rights.

Further Discussion on Student Day

MK Tirosh expressed her frustration about the issues of today’s higher education. She questioned how extreme left professors are allowed to use their positions to speak against the state of Israel and the I.D.F. and suggested the education ministry order a poll in order to check how widespread the situation is.

MK Wilf talked about the need to give students more rights in order to increase the number of Israelis who go to college and expressed the need to bring back to Israel the academics who have left the country.

MK Zuabi brought statistics that displayed the number of Arabs accepted into university this year as 7% of the population, down from a previous high of 9%. She claimed that most Arabs learn in Jordan or Jenin instead.

MK Eldad questioned why affirmative action wasn’t enough for Zuabi and told the Arabs to study harder if they want to learn in university. Eldad expressed frustration that his bill that would help students was defeated by the government last week. He also doubted that the Likud would do anything that they promised on the subject.

MK Regev (Likud) talked about the visit to the City of David in Jerusalem that she took with students earlier in the day. She exploded at the universities for discriminating against reserve soldiers, reading several letters her office received.

Education Minister Sa’ar (Likud) praised the 5 MKs who brought up a wide spectrum of issues. He said that many of the problems have been there for a long time. He assured that things are getting better, slowly, perhaps, but still getting better.

Other Notes:

Notice by the Constitution, Law and Justice Committee that would apply the continuity law to the Adopting Children Bill. MK Rotem (Y.B.) chairman of the committee asked that everyone support him on this matter.