Eyal Berkovitch stands for a minute of silence in memory of Israeli democracy (from "Ofira and Berkovitch", Keshet 12, February 24, 2023)
"We are Zionists, even though we are leaving the country," says Esther Shatsky, who will soon move with her husband Assaf and their children to live in Paphos, Cyprus.
Esther and Assaf, a pair of hitkists from Tel Aviv, are part of a group of Israelis who appeared in Ilan Lukach's article about "The Race for the Foreign Passport" that was broadcast on "Olan Shishi" (Channel 12).
Lukács, who has already made TV shows on almost every topic - from pressure chamber treatment to the madness surrounding the pistachio shell, made one of the most depressing articles in his career.
Perhaps the most depressing of all.
He met with a group of Israelis who decided to immigrate, with a guy who specializes in helping Israelis who move the center of their lives abroad and also with Helina Birnbaum - the Holocaust survivor about whom the song "Ashes and Dust" was written. Birnbaum can't believe this is happening to her. The Jews, she sees how everything crumbles in front of her eyes. When Lukacs spoke to her, it sounded like even his very characteristic voice broke.
The late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin called the Israelis who are leaving the country "a fall of desperation."
When you hear Israelis and these Israelis it is hard to think if Rabin himself - if he had not been assassinated - would not have preferred to immigrate today himself and look at this madhouse from a cold European capital.
An article about thousands or tens of thousands of Israelis who choose to leave their country, their families and their friends (Estar tells with teary eyes that she is leaving a 75-year-old Parkinson's disease mother here), she is not "another magazine reporter".
There is a sense of summary here, of fear that we did not know before and this is written by someone who grew up here in the nineties and ate their lunches after school in front of live broadcasts from terrorist attacks.
"The media", that aerial body that many have already turned into an enemy at the level of the Iranian threat, is made up of people who are also just at a loss for words and don't really know how they are supposed to behave these days.
Itamar and Thelma Eligon Rose (photo: screenshot, News 12)
Next to Lukach's article, "Olan Shishi" presented business as usual.
Yes, there was quite a bit of yelling but yelling is the default on this show.
So this time it was about the legal revolution.
The news companies have not yet switched to broadcasting on open wave, but it seems that the emphasis is on yet.
Israel is currently in a state of war, but not the kind we used to know.
This is an internal war.
There are no missile strike sites to send reporters to, no victims of shock and anxiety.
At least not in the classic sense of the word.
The reporters who are most identified with a state of war - Nir Davori and Ohad Hamu - sit on the lines, they are not needed.
It seems that all the news and current affairs programs already understand that we are in an emergency but don't know how to cover it.
I don't know if there is a right answer.
I don't think anyone at the Channel 12 news company has prepared a protocol for a situation where the country moves from a democratic regime to a non-democratic regime (and we all have to wait and see what it will be).
Here we can exclude "Ofira and Berkovich".
So many words have been written about these two and their plan, for better or for worse, but what is certain is that they play by their own rules.
This week, in a segment that went viral as soon as it aired, Eyal Berkovich opened the show with a minute's silence in memory of Israeli democracy.
While holding the Israeli flag, bowing his head and muttering the national anthem (if my lip reading is accurate), Barko took a braver step than many journalists of his stature.
He is "all in all a former footballer".
It is clear that Barko's act angered quite a few Israelis.
It's no coincidence that the two have become a red sheet for the Bibist camp when they sound too harsh a program of criticism on the actions of this government, but regardless of your positions, it's hard not to admire two people who are so true to themselves.
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It's hard not to admire.
Berkovich (photo: screenshot, Keshet 12)
"Ofira and Barko" started as a soft current affairs program, one that covers what happened this week and is seasoned with "Why did you unfollow me" debates with Eyal Golan, but from season to season it has become a program that creates an agenda.
This minute of silence should be a necessary wake-up call not only for all viewers who do not understand the magnitude of the hour and think that we are in another 'political debate'.
But also to all the journalists and more of them - the program editors, who don't know how to cover the situation.
For example, Gideon Oko's program on Friday afternoon, which is not defined as soft current affairs, but actually chose to invite the model and actor Aviv Elosh to talk about the legal revolution straight from the photo set for a new campaign.
I hold the opinion that artists who wish to express their political opinion despite the damage that may be caused to their career is a welcome thing.
However, the question arises, is Aviv Elosh the most eloquent speaker that the supporters of the revolution could find for themselves?
Elosh, who already in October 2020 said in an interview with "Yediot Ahronoth" that "Netanyahu is the last prime minister of the State of Israel", appears to be a supporter of the revolution and also explained that a judge who does not believe there is anyone above him (by God - B.B.B.) does not can judge justice. When Oko tried to develop the discussion, Elosh invited him for a deeper and longer conversation, but the whole atmosphere felt like a Torah lesson in the courtyard of a house and less like a press interview.
Ofira and Berkovich