Polls showed that Netanyahu would win a fourth election in Israel, and the deal he cut for a unity government with Benny Gantz reflects his strength. Fewer than a third of Israeli voters believe Netanyahu will respect his rotation agreement with Gantz.
Israel’s third election inside a year shows the rightwing continuing to gain ground. This is what Jewish nationalists want. A society governed by an authoritarian leader, no matter how corrupt. Just so long as there are no Arabs anywhere near power. The only hope politically is the burgeoning Joint List of Palestinian parties, which reject apartheid and discrimination.
Benny Gantz plays into Netanyahu’s racist attack, and says he will refuse to have the Palestinian Joint List as participants in a government, preferring the rightwinger Liberman, as if the math makes sense. It doesn’t. Gantz needs the Joint List. He spurns Palestinians because of primal Israeli Jewish fears that by welcoming the other into the Zionist community, Jews will want to leave the fold.
Some commentators are predicting Netanyahu is about to be betrayed by a “broad” coalition of Israeli centrists. But the race-baiting against Palestinian legislators continue unabated. And one likely replacement says Netanyahu has been soft on Gaza and Israel must speed up “targeted killings” of Palestinian leaders.
Naim Mousa writes, “There are two candidates for prime minister, one incites violence against Arabs and constantly carries out racist policies, and the other does the exact same but is called Gantz.” Yet Palestinian voters have shown their growing power through the Joint List’s endorsement of Gantz to lead the government.
Today is the last day Israeli election polls may be published before the vote, and the latests gives Likud a substantial lead over Gantz’s Blue and White party. This suggests Benjamin Netanyahu may be in a good position to form a new right-wing government.
The governing coalitions that are likely to come out of the Israeli election are all absent the third largest party, the Palestinian Joint List, because it’s not Jewish and Zionist. “We will not invite a party that does not recognize Israel as a Jewish state,” Blue and White leader Gabi Ashkenazi says. So what does that say about Israel’s claim to be a democracy?
Polling suggests that Netanyahu will fall from power in Israel’s September elections His Hail Mary to stay as prime minister and avoid indictment is that the Trump administration interferes, by releasing its peace plan, thereby putting pressure on Netanyahu’s rivals to make a government with him, says Evan Gottesman of Israel Policy Forum.
As Israeli elections approach, Avigdor Lieberman remains the kingmaker of a likely rightwing coalition. Even if the new leftleaning Democratic Union and center join up, they would need the Palestinian parties and Lieberman to create a majority bloc, and that is not going to happen, Jonathan Ofir observes.