Sketch: Election Season In Ramla
Tomorrow is municipal election day in Israel. While local elections are less important to national political fortunes than in the U.S., they increasingly have national undertones and implications. The New York Times has a nice write up about the mayoral race in Nazareth. Other important races to watch are in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Beit Shemesh.
Ramle is less central to the country’s collective imagination, but it has not stopped the city’s walls from becoming a visual forum on the competing visions of its political future. I do not have time for a eschatological investigation into the meaning of it all, but here is a quick photo tour of the cityscape during municipal elections:
This is Yoel Lavi. He has been mayor of Ramla for 20 years and is credited with the city’s turnaround. He used to be in Likud, but now runs as an independent. Tellingly, he is the only political candidate, as best I could tell, with campaign signs in both Arabic and Hebrew. Not that he has a perfect relationship with the city’s Arab minority: In 2006, rejecting a request to change street names in Arab neighborhoods, he told a reporter, ”If they don’t like it, they should go and live in Jaljulia (an Israeli Arab village)”
The next few shots are from one of the city’s Arab neighborhoods.
Twelve images of deputy mayor Nissim Pinchasov #1
Twelve images of deputy mayor Nissim Pinchasov #2
I call this one “hedging your bets.”
Moses dances with the ten commandments behind a campaign ad for deputy mayor Nissim Pinchasov.