An elderly Knesset, a secretive Knesset
Only 42.5 percent of pensioners are men. Some 57.5 percent are women. For every 100 male pensioners, there are 135 women, according to the data of the Central Bureau of Statistics. But the only woman in the Pensioners Party is Sarah Shalev, chair of the pensioners of the Rehovot Municipality, who is seventh on the list. Only 17 female MKs, who constitute 14 percent of all the MKs, will be serving in the next Knesset. Part of the reason for this lies with the religious parties (including the National Union-National Religious Party) and the Arab parties, who didn't bring in a single woman.
On the other hand, there will be 15 generals in the Knesset, including one woman, a former Israel Defense forces women's affairs officer, Amira Dotan of Kadima, six former senior members of the secret services and one senior member of the police force. That, by the way, is an increase of 50 percent. There were only 10 generals at the beginning of the previous Knesset.
The youngest MK in the upcoming Knesset will be the chair of the youth faction of Yisrael Beiteinu, Alex Miller, 28. One of the results of the elections will be a very old Knesset. The reason for that is on the one hand the success of the Pensioners Party, and on the other, the fact that many young people who were placed at the bottom of the Kadima slate remained outside. In all, there will be eight people in the 18-39 age group, which constitutes almost half of the electorate.
One third of the MKs, 41 in number, will be serving for the first time. Nine of the 12 MKs of Yisrael Beiteinu will be new, as well as all seven pensioners. The next Knesset will have 11 Arabs (including one woman) and two Druze. No fewer than 15 new immigrants will be serving in the next Knesset, as compared to 10 at the beginning of the previous Knesset - an increase of 50 percent; eight of them are from Yisrael Beiteinu. And a surprise: Shas is contributing three new immigrants, one from Bukhara, one from Georgia and one from Ethiopia.
Shas attributes great importance to the entry of 33-year-old Ethiopian rabbi Mazor Bayana, to the Knesset. Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef was the one who decided in the 1970s, as chief rabbi, that the Falashas, as Ethiopian Jews were called, are Jews and should be brought to Israel. The Ashkenazi Haredim (ultra-Orthodox of European origin) do not recognize their Jewishness even today. The election of Bayana is a declaration by Shas regarding the Jewishness of the Ethiopians, as well as a clarification: For us, only Rabbi Ovadia Yosef decides.
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