Cliff Savren reports for the Cleveland Jewish News on Israel and the Middle East from Ra’aana, Israel.

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Dramatic news indeed. It looks like Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should be ordering movers to come to the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem. He and his family have been living there for more than 12 years. Any Israeli under age of 20 would have little memory of anyone lead…

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In addition to the incomprehensible loss of lives in the Holocaust, another casualty of the Nazi effort to exterminate the Jewish people was the near eradication Europe’s Yiddish speakers. A language that was the vibrant repository of Eastern European Jewish life of all kinds, from secular socialism to ultra-Orthodoxy, and which on the eve of World War II had an estimated 10.7 million speakers, was nearly wiped out in Europe.

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When my family moved to Israel from Cleveland more than 20 years ago, on many Saturday mornings during the winter, I would take my two daughters, who were 5 and 6 years old when we arrived in the country, to the Mediterranean beach at Herzliya. The beach is about a 15-minute drive from our Tel Aviv suburb, and when the sea was rough, I always found it particularly beautiful.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reminds me of the story of the guy who killed both his parents and then pleaded for the mercy of the court because he was an orphan. As he heads into the witness stage of his trial on corruption charges, the prime minister is objecting to his trial being conducted during an election campaign. Israel heads to the polls for the fourth time in two years on March 23.

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This month’s takeover of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., by a mob has been a major topic of media coverage in Israel. My hunch is that it has also finally prompted a shift in how Israelis perceive former President Donald Trump – now that his term is over.

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Israel entered 2021 as a country of contrasts. It began the year with a daily count of more than 5,000 new coronavirus cases. Earlier in the pandemic, the government warned that anything exceeding 100 cases a day would set off alarm bells. On the other hand, Israel has also racked up a record unmatched in the world for the pace at which Israelis are getting vaccinated.