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By Rhonda Spivak, June 2, 2010

P.M. “Bed” Manners on Flight to Canada come under Scrutiny 

The Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported  on May 25, a day  prior to Prime Minister Netanyahu leaving on a trip to France and Canada (Netanyahu was here on May 30-31) , that   the price of Netanyahu’s trip  had risen by  $300,000  due to  “special requests made by members of his bureau, including the installation of a double bed on the plane for the prime minister and his wife to allow a direct return flight to Israel.”

Israel’s Globes financial newspaper reported that the Netanyahu couple has requested that a double bed be installed on the PM’s private plane. As a result, a Boeing 757 which the couple has used until now is not large enough and a new Boeing 767 will need to be leased. This will increase the cost of the couple’s trip by $300,000, the newspaper reported.

Netanyahu was here for a diplomatic visit, during which Netanyahu met with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and addressed the Jewish community during May 30’s Walk for Israel in Toronto.

Is it any wonder that Netanyahu has gotten a lot of  bed press  for his rather bed decision to expect the public purse to pay for the installation of  a double bed for he and Sara? 

Clearly, the reclining seats weren’t good enough. It’s too bed, that Israeli planes aren’t like Air Canada planes which would have at least allowed both Bibi and Sara to  have had  separate completely reclining beds in executive class.  This would have a been a single bed for each of them however-not a double.

You’d think that the price of a couple of sleeping pills would have been a bedder option  than  assembling a double bed for the couple.

If not, you’d suppose that by now  a home-decoration type store would have designed some sort of fold out/ closet bed that should have cost $50. 99 and even if it only lasted for one night before breaking, it would have done the trick.

Camp Massad where I went to camp as a teenager used to have those folding cots with thin mattresses that I swear could have fit into the aisle of a Boeing 757. But perhaps my memory deceives me.

What about a good old fashion sleeping bag? Even a really high end one?

Another option, of course, would have been to leave Sara at home and just have her skyped in for the events that she was missing. Then only a single bed would have needed to be installed.

Note that Sara’s trip expenditures have come under scrutiny before, including her many thousand dollar hair do while she and Bibi were in London on an advocacy trip during the Second Lebanon War.

In any event, I hope that when Sara landed in Canada she didn’t complain of having   “bed head,” or a “bed hair day.”

On further reflection, maybe to make the money back , one day the bed will be installed in the  Israel Museum with a big sign “The Netanyahu’s slept here,” and people from around the world would pay to see it.  It would be a good exhibit for a wax museum where wax figures of Bibi and Sara would be sculpted into the bed (designers would have to decide how the couple was to be positioned !)

Or alternatively, maybe the government could store the plane on a hilltop in the Galil with a nice view and  open up a “Bed’N Breakfast.”

Do the Netanyahu’s have bed manners in all of this-I’ll let readers decide.

As for whether Netanyahu deserves all of the bad press he got over this, it’s kind of  difficult to feel sorry for him. As the saying goes, “He made his bed. Let him lie in it.”

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.