If there was one country thought not to be in danger of catching the contagion of uprisings in the Middle East, it was Israel. Nobody thought much of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu' statement on March 30 that, at a time when "everything is shaking and rocking.the only stable place, the only stable country, is this democracy Israel."
But a month and a half later, Netanyahu' statement is laughable. A mass movement has now erupted in Israel, shaking the status quo. What first started as a tent-city protest in Tel Aviv over the high cost of housing has mushroomed into tent cities all over Israel, hundreds of thousands of demonstrators pouring into the streets and disruptions of business-as-usual in the Israeli Knesset. Angry over the high cost of living and the yawning gap between the rich and the poor in Israel, the protestors have called for "social justice" in the form of public housing, rent control and a raise in the minimum wage, among other demands. Stanford University professor Joel Beinin recently wrote that the Israeli protests were a revolt against neoliberalism.http://wagingnonviolence.org/2011/08/the-social-order-shakes-israeli-journalist-noam-sheizaf-on-the-israeli-social-justice-movement/?utm_source=feedburner