The latest in a long line of journalists to join politics in Israel is Merav Michaeli, a well known television and radio personality, who is famous for her radical neo-Marxist views on gender issues. Among other things, Michaeli opposes double beds, and not out of Halakhic considerations of purity. She announced Tuesday that she will vie for a spot on Labor's Knesset list.
Michaeli writes opinion pieces in radical left wing newspaper Haaretz. Her latest column, "Forced Couplehood," begins with a cite from French magazine Le Monde, according to which more and more people are buying 160-cm. wide double mattresses instead of 140-mm. wide ones. French doctors explained, she said, that people move around and snore in their sleep, and that sleeping in the same bed with another person is a completely unnatural habit.
Michaeli goes on to say that the marital double bed is an invention of the Church, which uses it to control procreation, and that this control is perpetuated by modern secular society. She goes on to explain that the heterosexuality, which encourages men and women to sleep together in the same bed, is a political institution through which men control and exploit women.
Michaeli has, in the past, exposed herself indecently while presenting a news show, in protest of some perceived injustice against women. She is also notorious for her habit of eating with her hands instead of using knives and forks.
Michaeli is the granddaughter of Rudolf Kastner, a Hungarian Jewish immigrant and Israeli government official who was accused of striking a deal with the senior Nazi official Adolf Eichmann to allow 1,685 affluent Jews to escape persecution, while failing to warn others that their resettlement was in fact deportation to the gas chambers. He also gave positive character references after the war for SS officer Kurt Becher, thus allowing Becher to escape prosecution for war crimes.
After an official defamation lawsuit was filed against a writer who accused Kastner of being a traitor, a court ruled in 1955 that Kastner had indeed, in the words of Judge Benjamin Halevi, "sold his soul to the devil."
The Supreme Court of Israel overturned most of the judgment in January 1958, stating that the lower court had "erred seriously," but not before Kastner had been assassinated.
Michaeli has come out strongly in defense of her grandfather.
According to Israeli media, she was, in the past, the romantic partner of Haaretz journalist Gideon Levy, who has been dubbed "the baron of the industry of lies" by Maariv.