|Date of birth||(1963-11-05) 5 November 1963|
|Place of birth||Tel Aviv, Israel|
|Faction represented in Knesset|
|2013â€“2014||Minister of Finance|
I feel we’re at risk that a whole generation of young Israelis, who went to the army, work hard, pay taxes, one day will look around and say, ‘Hey, this country is going nowhere.’
The Golan Heights is an area in the north of the State of Israel that has no part in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Netanyahu needs to stand before the Israeli public and say, ‘I failed.’
I want to do everything in my power to ensure the equality between all movements of Judaism in the state of Israel: Orthodox, Conservative, or Reform. In conversions, in budgets, in the eyes of the law. No one can claim ownership over the Jewish God.
Arab society features apartheid of women, apartheid of homosexuals, and apartheid of Christians, Jews, and democracy.
Hebrew is the language I use to thank the Creator and, also, to swear on the road.
I don’t reject caution, but you also have to be careful about caution because there’s a stage when it turns into paralysis.
If, for 2,000 years, you dress up differently, believe in a different God, celebrate different holidays, and on top of it insist on telling everyone that you’re completely different than them, ultimately they’ll believe you.
The Internet, Facebook, synagogue pamphlets, and the plethora of TV channels and cellular networks in our lives increasingly blur the boundary between the public and private sphere.
Intellectuals know how to answer the question, ‘What God do I believe in?’ not only through the question of ‘What God do I abhor?’ Intellectuals can also answer the question of ‘What flag do I wave?’ without having to answer the question of ‘What flag do I burn.’
In politics, there is only one crime that is unforgivable – showing weakness.
Israel was founded as a refuge for the Jewish people, but today it isn’t a safe place. It is safer to be Jew in New York.
People like to invent enemies. It spares us the need to address complex worldviews.
The Tower of David is important for Israel’s heritage and existence because it is more than a tower, it is a symbol. It is more important than the Azrieli Towers.
Corruption is when a politician uses public funds to deliver pistachio ice cream to his home and transfer garden furniture to his Caesarea villa, then requesting that the expenses be covered for the water in his pool and fights to get a private jet.
If someone doubts our right to exist – be it on the hills of Umm al-Fahem or in Munich’s beer halls, in Gaza’s crowded streets or in the thick woods of Babi Yar – it’s their problem. Proud states do not break into wails and crawl under the carpet when they discover someone doesn’t love them.
The Left doesn’t understand the importance of God in the Israeli public discourse, and Yesh Atid does.
The settlers do not have a problem with the leftists but, rather, with Israelis who like settlers: Israelis who are unconcerned by the fact that national-religious youngsters are overtaking our elite units. Such Israelis actually appreciate the settlers for that.
The Palestinians must be brought to an understanding that Jerusalem will always remain under Israeli sovereignty and that there is no point for them in opening negotiations about Jerusalem.
Decisions are never easy. If they were easy, they wouldn’t be called decisions.
The State of Israel was not established by anxiety but, rather, through pride.
Children believe that if they just want something badly enough, it will happen.
There is a clear interest within ISIS to drag Israel into a war with them. If they do so, they will be able to paint Israel as having an alliance with the states fighting against them.
My children receive education that greatly emphasizes the fact they are part of a human group that has tradition, collective memory, and a state. I am a great believer in the need for Israel to be a Jewish state. I certainly believe my children will pass that on to their children.
The Israeli media are very important to me. I’ve been part of them and they a part of me all my adult life.
Quite a few people feel uncomfortable when faced with the claim that the Jews are the world’s smartest people. In our politically correct era, one is not expected to argue that one group within humanity has an advantage over all the others.
For years, Judaism has been a sort of product put on the religious shelf, and on holidays, we would take it off the shelf and let seculars play with it for a bit. Now, Judaism is going back to being something that more closely touches everyone.
I have written to Israel’s friends around the world, including the U.S. Congress and the E.U., and asked them to make funding for the United Nations dependent on ending blatant discrimination against Israel at the U.N. Human Rights Council.
Freedom of expression is tested during times of anger and conflict and enables all opinions and outraged expressions of dissent that we may not want to hear. But even for this there have to be limits.
Israelis want peace and security, and Palestinians want peace and justice – these are two very different things, and this is the real gap we have to close.
The views of religious-Zionist rabbis are of course worthy of being heard, yet they represent a very defined and very narrow camp within the Israeli spectrum. This is not the way to shape the perception of future division and brigade commanders.
One of the greatest fears of the Arab world is a direct conflict between Israel and the Islamic State.
Israel’s master strategy needs to be moving toward a regional arrangement that will enable a full normalization of relations with the Arab states and the establishment of a demilitarized Palestinian state alongside the State of Israel.
The Israeli public’s willingness to enlist, the warm embrace for the soldiers and the residents of the south, and the desire to contribute and to give at any given moment really warm the heart, and it gives all of us strength.
The democratic system is premised on trust in the masses’ wisdom. We believe that the collective is wiser than its parts and that, at the end of the day, it shall make the right choices and take the right decisions.
Succeeding in life is a difficult business – you need to work 16 hours a day, face failures along the way, remember that nobody owes you a thing, and take risks.
The rabbis and their wives may say whatever they wish in private conversations. I may not like their views, but a person is allowed to say anything in his or her own home.
I’m not particularly fond of Shoah jokes, yet there is one I cannot forget: Why was Auschwitz an optimistic place? Because all the pessimists were already in New York by then.
I’m willing to take a polygraph test to prove that I’m happy about Kahlon’s return to politics. He’s a good man, a man who cares. It’s good to have people like that in politics, I have no problem with that.
Does the global Left – as well as the Israeli Left – truly not care about the horrific Taliban regime, the terrible oppression of women in Gulf states, and the mass hanging festivals in Iran?
One of the things that hold together a human society is the existence of basic politeness among its members.
I urge the senior members of the political system to form as broad a government as possible that would unite the moderate forces from the Left and Right so that we will be able to bring about real change in the State of Israel.
The settlers, as we know, are the only people in Israel who take the Left seriously. When you read the settlers’ publications, you think that the leftists are everywhere: The leftists infiltrate the government, the leftists run the Defense Ministry, the leftists dominate the legal establishment, and the leftists control the media, of course.
Journalists always explain that people are mad at them because they tell the truth, which is often unpleasant or uncomfortable to hear. However, they fail in situations where there is more than one truth.
You want private education for your students? No problem whatsoever; pay for it.
How can Israel say that everyone is equal before the law – that you’re equal before the law – when the law defines Judaism as the cultural, national and legislative basis for the state?
The Human Rights Organisation deceives the world by calling itself a human rights council.
Twenty percent of students in Israel’s schools are haredim; another 20% are retired; another 20% are Arab. I have no problem with any of them.
If you want to change a country, you’re going to be bumped every now and then.
As opposed to journalists, politicians cannot make do with questions. They must also offer answers.
Jewish existence in the Land of Israel depends only on the Jews, and on what the Jews think of themselves.
Judaism shouldn’t be the jailhouse of ideas but a liberator of ideas; not a disintegrator of people but what brings people together.
Yesh Atid is a Jewish, religious-secular party. Our DNA is center – both Left and Right. The difference between center-left and center-right is more emotional and hereditary than having to do with what people think about the Palestinians.
The win-win situation is the basis for America’s entire business world. Instead of wasting our time attempting to defeat each other, let’s find a way that will make both of us gain and go home satisfied. In Israel, it doesn’t work because the only meaning of victory is seeing your rival’s body lying trampled on the floor.
When you say to Israelis, ‘European boycott,’ they think it means that this year they won’t get Camembert cheese on time… That is not the case.
I’m going into politics because I think that the kind of discourse taking place in Israel is leading this country to oblivion, and I want to change it.
At times, we need to stop and rethink everything. Our entire history is made up of people who were sure they knew the truth yet forgot that the truth has an annoying tendency to change on occasion without us noticing it.
The Holocaust changed our perception of morality not only because we discovered that morality is the only thing that can stand up to the ultimate evil, but also because it shifted the focus from society to the individual.
Why doesn’t anyone remember that the Palestinians already had four real opportunities to establish their state, yet each time they preferred to revert to terrorism?
When the Americans see someone like Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg, who made billions thanks to their talent and determination, the first thing they say to themselves is, ‘I want to be like him.’ This, in many ways, is the engine that drives Western society: The desire to make it like the winners.
Judaism is a whole line of values that have existed for thousands of years, but the democratic idea is a new idea, and significant parts of it stand in contradiction to Judaism.
I think that haredi children should study the core subjects and that their parents must work, and I believe that there are many haredim who think like me and would be glad to discover that someone is fighting the radical functionaries and rabbis who embitter their lives.
Holocaust survivors came to Israel in order to establish a new human society where nobody would be able to hurt them just because they’re Jewish. This is both a furious and vulnerable message.
Israel can’t be the only country in the Western world not to have freedom of religion.
The State of Israel was not established so that the anti-Semites will disappear but, rather, so we can tell them to get lost.
The liberals will surely argue that every person has the right to fall in love with no regard to religion, creed or gender, but I am not that liberal.
I want to live in a country that is not just a place but also an idea, and Jerusalem is the heart of the idea. There may be practical considerations, but a country cannot exist without an ethos, and Jerusalem is an ethos.
Israeli teachers are not required to hold an academic degree, and their salaries are the lowest in the Western world.
Even in an enlightened democracy, the media have to check themselves to make sure they are not contributing to an unnecessary mass hysteria.
Instead of personal security, citizens are afraid to walk down the street in Jerusalem.
I like Tel Aviv; I live in Tel Aviv, but our right of return is Jerusalem. We did not return after 2,000 years for Tel Aviv but for Jerusalem.
I’m not telling you what to do on the Sabbath, and you won’t tell me.
Politicians around the world are very different, but they all have one thing in common: The first thing they respond to is public opinion.
Intellectuals are people who manage the world in their head. They look at life and try to see some kind of truth, and if they cannot find it, they attempt to create it.
I don’t feel we need a declaration from the Palestinians that they recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
An old friend of mine, an economist by trade, once explained to me that the statistical definition of ‘dilemma’ is 49.9% in favor and 50.1% against. If the gap is greater, there is no dilemma, because the answer is clear.
There’s always a reason not to do anything… to flee the need to make decisions.
Israel’s middle class is paying for those below it, and that’s fine, but also for those who are above it, and that’s very wrong.