A triple-murder-suicide in Haifa makes several front pages on Monday, with papers detailing the string of killings around the bay that culminated with the killer taking his own life in front of police Monday evening.
Yedioth Ahronoth channels its inner Dashiell Hammett with the headline: ”Four bodies and a question mark.” (Another question mark is its front page story about another vote-buying scandal from senior MKs “in a major party.”) The paper gives a tick-tock of the deadly rampage making up the four bodies, but has no answers for the question mark.
It does, however, offer some clues that the triple murder may have been some time in the making, quoting a neighbor of Hatuella Konizev, the suspected murderer’s girlfriend who was stabbed to death along with her son Alex: “I remember I saw her on the road and we spoke. She said to me ‘don’t stay next to me too long. He’s on his way and it won’t look good.” The neighbor also says the suspected killer, Dov Tagar, didn’t strike him as a violent or threatening guy.
Israel Hayom also leads off with story, adding a tidbit from the same neighbor that Tagar was a jealous lover who somewhat smothered Konizev. As for the third victim, childhood friend Yosef Dov, the paper offers hints that the killer may have thought he was involved with his girlfriend, via denials from his family. “I don’t know what was between this woman that was killed and my son,” Yosef’s mother tells the paper. “I also don’t know the killer. There’s no chance my son was friends with this girl, because I would have known.”
Another lover’s dispute may be brewing in Jerusalem, though (hopefully) a less deadly one. With Yesh Atid and Jewish Home now looking to enter the government coalition, the battles have begun for who gets which ministerial post. Maariv reports that the main quarrel between the partnered factions is over who will get the Housing and Construction Ministry (and get to score political points for any reforms that might lead to cheaper housing) though a side battle is also percolating over the number of ministers there should be in the government. Yesh Atid has been firm in its demand that the number of ministers be capped at 18 (the current government has over 30) but Jewish Home is open to there being a few more.
The paper also reports that Yesh Atid is opening fronts against Yisrael Beytenu for two ministerial posts: The Foreign Ministry, which Yesh Atid head Yair Lapid is reportedly interested in, and the Absorption Ministry, which for seem reason it wants to pry away from the immigrant-heavy party.
Yedioth reports that Netanyahu told Lapid to give up on the Foreign Ministry, which will be reserved for Liberman should he beat his fraud rap, and said Lapid needs to decide with Jewish Home head Naftali Bennett which of them will get the Finance Ministry, no small prize but also not the top diplomatic post. “If Lapid and Bennet are so in sync, they’ve surely already come to an agreement and won’t fight about it,” a senior Likud source tells the paper. Do I detect a hint of smarmcasm?
Despite the fact that the rest of the media world couldn’t seem to care less, Haaretz is sticking to guns and is continuing to report on stories about asylum-seeker deportations that nobody else is touching. This time, its lead story reports that Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein has ordered Israel to stop sending Eritreans homeward, after an asylum seeker all but forced out was refused entry to Uganda and wound up in a Cairo prison instead.
“To prevent, God forbid, such incidents from happening again, I expect the population authority to uphold the directive of the attorney general under which, pending a clarification of the related legal issues, no Eritrean citizen will be allowed to leave the population authority’s custodial facilities to any destination outside Israel’s borders,” the attorney general wrote.
Speaking of less-than-welcome Africans, the coming locust swarm also engenders a fair amount of media coverage. Yedioth publishes a recipe for locusts in coconut milk, and Israel Hayom has a first-person account from a Yemenite remembering the delicious and kosher locusts she ate in the old country: “Mom would wash the locusts in water and dry them. Afterward she would lay them in a large frying pan and fry them until they were crispy. I love to eat them hot out of the pan. It was a delicacy, really salty, toasted like sunflower seeds, only with meat. The taste was roast without a lot of spices. It’s something I will never forget,” Tziona Gudi tells the paper.
Less easy to swallow is hawkish former foreign minister Moshe Aren’s opinion piece in Haaretz, in which he calls for Israel to tear down the West Bank separation fence: “The barrier is a severe imposition on the Palestinians. Farmers are separated from their lands, the movement of those who live within the area cut off by the barrier has become restrictive. Life for the Palestinian population has become more difficult. Can this be justified? Is it reasonable to continue construction of the barrier? Has the time not come to pull it down? It is true that Palestinian terrorist activity originating in Judea and Samaria has been essentially suppressed for some years now, and lives have been saved. It is not at all clear that that is due to the construction of the security fence. On the contrary, there are a number of indications that other factors should be credited for this improvement.”
In Maariv, Nadav Eyal uses his acerbic sarcasm to question all the celebratory hullaballoo surrounding the stories of the people profiting off the meteoric rise in real estate prices: “It’s possible that all the contractors are right. Maybe I’m just a cynic and all the real estate sharks have given their due modestly. All power to them, right?”