Ehud Barak, Israel's defense minister and a former prime minister, announced Monday that he is stepping down after January elections. "I feel I have exhausted dealing with political life, which has never been a passion of mine, and I feel there is room to allow other people to serve in senior roles in Israel," he told reporters. Barak, a highly decorated former army chief of staff, led the opposition Labor Party until 2009, when it had a disastrous showing at the polls. He then joined the conservative Likud-led government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Barak's popularity was on the rise in Israel after the suspended offensive against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Obama just kneecapped Jeb Bush and Chris Christie's 2016 prospects
- It's official: The religious right is calling it quits
- 6 tiny scientific mistakes that created huge disasters
- 10 things you need to know today: November 22, 2014
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The dangerously childish morality of liberal ObamaCare supporters
- 10 classic Sesame Street moments we wouldn't show today's kids
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1: 10 major differences between the book and the movie
- Don't change a thing: 8 inventions that never needed updating
Subscribe to the Week