Ideology is OK, but what's really important is if the party has a good jingle. Now is YOUR chance to vote for your favorite Israeli political party election commercial in the 2009 Knesset elections. Leave your comment and make your opinion be heard! As host of one of the better music programs featured on Israel National Radio, I have taken it as my duty to share with you my intricately hand-picked videos featuring awesome and cool songs.
Ichud Leumi - National Union, lead by Yaakov "Ketzele" Katz and Aryeh Eldad - The song really is just a jingle at the end, but I like the heroic imagery. Their web site also has some dramatic photos of young Israelis holding flags. This a good solid, normal video with a straightforward message and a pretty catchy jingle. No gimmicks here.
Yisrael Beiteinu - Israel is Our Home, lead by Avigdor Lieberman - This could possibly be the greatest election song of all time. It's from 2006, so maybe it doesn't count. It also includes some heroic imagery, and some classic historical footage from Entebbe and the Six Day War. The song is so catchy that even though I only understand some of the words, I still walk around singing it all day. It is sung by Alexander Rosenbaum, a Russian singer of Jewish ethnicity. I love his outfit.
Likud, lead by Binyamin Netanyahu - Now that the 2009 elections are upon us, Lieberman has a new ad with this cool typography thing. So I would have to say that the Likud video takes the cake as the most catchy and awesome video and song of the year. I love this guy's hair. His name is Shi 360 and I interviewed him several years ago. His parents are Israeli but they moved to Canada when he was very young. He then made aliyah as an adult after coming on a Taglit - birthright trip. He raps in Hebrew, French and English. Here's another video of Shi 360 singing Home, a pro-aliyah song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vzjEl8JVYlA.
Shas, led by Eli Yishai - A great Mizrachi style song that makes me want to dance and pretend I'm Sephardic. It was mostly filmed in Mahane Yehuda, an open air marketplace in Jerusalem, commonly referred to as the shuk. One of the vegetable stalls in the shuk has a giant hand-painted portrait of Menachem Begin on the wall. I don't know the name of the singer. If anyone does, tell me in the talkback section. In the late 1980's and early 1990's, a guy named Benny Elbaz sang at many Shas functions and was considered their offical singer. Elbaz was a formerly secular pop singer with long hair who became religious. He is known for his song "It's Not Hard to be a Jew" which is a duet with his then young son Gad Elbaz. Now Gad Elbaz is a popular singer in his own right who mixes Sephardic, hasidic, hip-hop and other styles.
HaBayit Yehudi - Jewish Home, led by Daniel Hershkowitz - I used to call this party Yehudi HaBaytah, which is a big faux pas because that actually means "Jew, go home." I have heard that "oi oi oi ay ya ya" song a million times but now I can't place it and I guess now I will forever associate it with this commercial.
Torah Ve'Eretz Yisrael - Torah and Land of Israel, lead by Rabbi Moshe Levinger - This video is from 1992. In one scene, it shows Rabbi Levinger at a firing range. After he fires a few shots he turns to the camera and begins talking about his political platform. Now that's hardcore. I wonder how many other political commercials feature firing range scenes? If anyone knows of any, in any country in the world, please post it in the talkback section.
OK, I know this one is also not for the 2009 elections, which are to take place Tuesday February 10th, by the way, but it is so awesome, I just had to end with it. It begins with a guy laughing at the newspaper, and then crying. In the middle there is a great scene where a guy is flying on a dollar bill like a magic carpet. Then a giant hand comes and pulls it out from underneath him. It ends with a guy in a white tuxedo who pulls a pickle out of his pocket and takes a big bite out of it. Forget those new wacky Ale Yarok commercials, this one from 1984 rocks.
In conclusion, I really do think ideology is the most important thing, not whether or not the party has a cool jingle. I love Israel, I love Israelis and their sense of humor and I love voting. This article was in no way meant to endorse or insult any particular candidate. It was meant to be humorous and show a cultural side to the elections. Hope you enjoyed.
To vote, just leave a comment about which is your favorite commercial and why.