2012 will be the "year of the campaign" for Suzanne Bonamici. Last night, she beat Rob Cornilles to win the seat left vacant by Congressman David Wu. However, she'll have to run again in November to keep the seat. She may even have to run in the primary in May. Is Brad Avakian considering a re-do? Bonamici says she doesn't plan to campaign just yet. She probably needs some rest. As for Rob Cornilles, he says he's taking the loss in stride. His supporters are surprised at how big the gap was in this race. This is the second loss for Cornilles and he says he's not sure if he'll run again in the future. We'll continue to follow on FM NEWS 101.
Voters head to the polls to pick the person to replace David Wu in the First Congressional District.
Will it be Suzanne Bonamici or Rob Cornilles? We'll cover both camps election
night January 31st. Kremer and Abrams will broadcast live from 7-9pm. We'll also have post game analysis from Jim Moore Wednesday morning.
Also, the Oregon State Legislature is back in session on Wednesday for a month. They'll try to figure out how to close the budget gap among other things. We’ll have reporters on the scene, interviews with lawmakers and analysis from our experts. Is there anything you want to know in particular about the session? Post on the comments below or email us at News@kxl.com and we'll find out.
On my way home, I was singled out in the airport at El Al. I watched a young woman take out every single piece of my clothing and shoes and souvenirs and swab them with an explosive detection stick. It took 45 minutes. Mind you, I had carefully packed the wine and honey and other things I brought back from Israel so they wouldn’t break.
I was so irritated that it took so long. I was irritated that I was sent to another special line with another blonde woman (racial profiling?). However, I realized this is the way to make sure we are safe when flying. As long as they don’t waste their time on someone like me and let someone really scary, like Lars breeze right on through. LOL.
Should Rand Paul feel the same? Is it okay to feel a lack of convenience or a“lack of dignity” in the search process in the name of security? What’s the fine line? I don’t have the answer but I think the question is worth investigating.
Good to be back in the states by the way. I did miss America.
If you want to get a real taste of life and tradition and history in Israel, you must visit the markets. We saw numerous fresh fruit markets and stands along the highway in the smallest of towns. The tangerines are fantastic here. We spent time at the Arab quarter in the old city. We got there early so the opening line from all the vendors was: "Special deal because you are first sale of the day." They believe it gives you good luck for the day if you cut a deal first thing. At least that's what they said. It worked because I bought a lot of things I probably don't need.
We also talked to a Palestinian cousin of former Oregon Governor Vic Atiyeh. He pulled up a table in his shop, poured us some hot tea, and talked to us at length about life in Jerusalem and his hope for the future. He was very kind and even took us on a tour of the church of the holy sepulchre where Jesus was crucified. He took us to his friend's restaurant and we had a wonderful lunch.
We also paid a visit to the Shook--the food market in downtown Jerusalem. We went as vendors and people were scrambling to buy and sell food in time for Shabbat. It was an incredible experience full of energy and excitement. You can hear my story from the Shook on FM News 101 Monday morning..or on a podcast later on this web site.
A tour of the Holocaust Museum tomorrow and then we're headed back to the states. I'll still be posting pictures on KXL's facebook site....so check it out.
The Dead Sea is about 1300 feet below sea level. It’s amazing because when you’re driving there, you are in the mountains but the sign says SEA LEVEL….and then you just keep going down and down. If we had the kind of rain here that you guys are having there, we wouldn’t be allowed to go because there would be flash floods everywhere. With this hard clay land with hardly any trees, there’s just nowhere for the water to go. Yes, I floated in the Dead Sea. It was so strange. You actually have to force yourself not to float. It is very strange.
On the way to the Dead Sea, you can see several Bedouin camps along the hills…they look a lot like homeless camps and the people are herding sheep nearby. It’s like walking back in time and I ‘m told by our guide that they pretty much do what they want. The Israeli Govt doesn’t bother them and they keep a low profile in the remote areas.
There are also more Arabs as you head south in this part of the Country…we drove near Jericho with is a town that is entirely controlled by the Palestinian Authority…..there are checkpoints on the road on the way there. And across from the Dead Sea, you can see Jordan.
We also went to Masada which was King Herod’s summer palace…..it was built in 72 AD up on a hill about a thousand feet above the dead sea. You have to take a tram to get there….or you can hike it. We took the tram.
When I told my son I was coming to Israel, he said “Are you going to ride a camel?” I thought that was ridiculous because most of the time, I’ve been in the big city or in the country but today, we were in the desert and on the way to the Dead Sea, I stopped and rode a camel. A Palestinian man let me ride his camel for 20 shekles. I made Lars pay. It was cool!
Since we got here only 5 days ago, we’ve been doing a lot of interviews and burning up a lot of tape….but today, was more of a visual day so I plan to post a lot of this on our KXL Facebook site
I know this area is polarizing….political…but you can’t ignore the geography, the history here all the different people. It is really quite amazing.
Today, we went to the Judea Samaria part of Israel, also known as the West Bank, or the disputed territories. It’s a fairly vast area peppered with small towns. Some of those are Arab Palestinian towns…others are Jewish towns. Some of the Arab towns are really run down. Others are fancy. I’m told that’s because money from Palestinians in America and other countries is being sent in to build them up. Many of the Jewish cities are being built up fast too. You can see the cranes next to the buildings and varying levels of construction.
We toured a factory that makes plastic bathroom items and employs Jewish and Arab Palestinians…..They say both groups get the same benefits and are paid the same too. They let us talk to a Palestinian worker…but his bosses were right there…so I’m not sure how candid he was …but he did say he liked his job . We went to a small winery in the area which made excellent wine. The Jewish owner has been working the land since 1998. We ate on an organic farm that has a watchtower and round the clock guards and surveillance cameras.
Where it gets tricky is the Israelis are building a lot in this area and even building on empty hilltops and that has a lot of people mad because they think this will make it harder to have two state solution to the Palestinian/Arab conflict.
For now, these two groups seem to get along for the most part….they want to work and feed their families just like us. I talked to a 24 year old Jewish man who grew up in a settlement (don’t call it the West Bank he says). He played soccer and went to school with Palestinians and that they’re his friends. But, there are incidents that sprout up where the Jewish settlers have been killed. We went to one house where the whole family was killed by some Muslim teenagers who didn’t want Jews living there. They broke into their house during the night and killed the mom and dad and a three month old baby. That was less than a year ago. Those teens were sentenced to five life terms in prison this very week.
The journalists and citizens and government officials I talked to agree this problem isn’t going to end soon. Both Jews and Muslims say they have religious roots in this area and they’re not leaving. A few people also told me that most of the people who live there want to live in peace, but it is the Palestinian leadership that is fueling the hatred and ultimately, that leadership will be the one that makes the decision. They also use Gaza as an example. The Jews pulled out of Gaza and they are still dealing with missiles being shot over the fence into Israel.