Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Hiding Behind the Likud

June 17, 2013 1:40 am 0 comments

Tzipi Livni. Photo: Antje Wildgrube/Wikimedia Commons.

I must confess, I’m not exactly a big fan of Tzipi Livni. Whether it was her incessant bashing of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the last government or her indefatigable efforts in the past as well as in the present to promote the suicidal two-state solution, the current Justice Minister simply rubs me the wrong way. Nevertheless, and perhaps a bit ironically, in certain ways I’m coming to respect her more than Netanyahu himself.

Despite their nearly ten-year age difference, ideologically the two of them share a similar background; they both come from right-wing Revisionist families connected to the ideas and vision of Ze’ev Jabotinsky and they both entered politics via the Likud. However, that’s where the similarities end.

While Livni has, politically speaking, come out of the closet and no longer pretends to be even remotely associated with the right-wing nationalist camp, Netanyahu on the other hand continues to hide behind the guise of the Likud, a rather convenient cover in that it allows him to project himself as a mature right-wing nationalist leader. Of course his public support for the two-state solution, his implementation of a complete freeze on Jewish building in Judea and Samaria during the last government, his current semi-official freeze on Jewish building in eastern portions of Jerusalem, his appointment of Ehud Barak in the last government and Tzipi Livni in the current government to key positions of power vis-à-vis the very Jewish settlements that they oppose, makes it absolutely clear to anyone who is not blind where Netanyahu stands on the issue of Judea and Samaria.

Even if we assume that Netanyahu’s declared support for the two-state solution is just a bluff, as Danny Danon would want us to believe, it’s still an extremely damaging bluff since the public assertions of a Prime Minister, and a Likud one at that, only increase the expectations of the world, making it that much more difficult for Israel to eventually change direction and choose another path.

Personally I don’t buy the bluff theory and I’m certain that what the Prime Minister says, the Prime Minister means. However since Netanyahu, unlike Livni, cannot fully come out of the closet, he continues to veer leftward ideologically yet simultaneously continues to hide behind the cozy confines of the Likud. Although such behavior might be a bit schizophrenic and has probably fooled quite a few people, it’s one that has greatly benefited Netanyahu since it’s enabled him to stay on top for quite some time.

The question is, when will someone finally blow the whistle? Although in the past there were several Likud MKs who were openly critical of Netanyahu’s increasingly leftward leanings, unfortunately most of them have apparently been stricken with an acute case of laryngitis ever since the Prime Minister appointed them to be Deputy Ministers. Their silence is not only deafening but it’s truly tragic since it’s inadvertently inching the country that much closer to the point of no return vis-à-vis the two-state solution.

Similarly, for far too long many good rank and file Likud members have been defending Netanyahu saying, “He’s the best possible leader of all the bad options”. The question is, what are these people going to say after he affixes his signature to a document that officially proclaims an Arab state in Judea and Samara? Will they be mesmerized by the star-studded White House ceremony or made proud by the Nobel Peace Prize that is certain to follow? This is no longer a hypothetical question as day by day Netanyahu, perhaps as part of a deal with America concerning Iran, is dragging Israel in the direction that would make both Barack Obama and Jimmy Carter proud.

This September will mark twenty years since the Labor government of Yitzhak Rabin launched the tragic Oslo process and in doing so began digging our national grave. Will the current government under the leadership of Benjamin Netanyahu close the coffin by signing away Judea and Samaria? If Netanyahu continues to hide behind the cover of the Likud, and everyone allows him to get away with it, then unfortunately there’s a very good chance that Netanyahu is going to sign that piece of paper on the White House lawn.

This article was originally published by Ynet.

I must confess, I’m not exactly a big fan of Tzipi Livni. Whether it was her incessant bashing of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the last government or her indefatigable efforts in the past as well as in the present to promote the suicidal two-state solution, the current Justice Minister simply rubs me the wrong way. Nevertheless, and perhaps a bit ironically, in certain ways I’m coming to respect her more than Netanyahu himself.

Despite their nearly ten-year age difference, ideologically the two of them share a similar background; they both come from right-wing Revisionist families connected to the ideas and vision of Ze’ev Jabotinsky and they both entered politics via the Likud. However, that’s where the similarities end.

While Livni has, politically speaking, come out of the closet and no longer pretends to be even remotely associated with the right-wing nationalist camp, Netanyahu on the other hand continues to hide behind the guise of the Likud, a rather convenient cover in that it allows him to project himself as a mature right-wing nationalist leader. Of course his public support for the two-state solution, his implementation of a complete freeze on Jewish building in Judea and Samaria during the last government, his current semi-official freeze on Jewish building in eastern portions of Jerusalem, his appointment of Ehud Barak in the last government and Tzipi Livni in the current government to key positions of power vis-à-vis the very Jewish settlements that they oppose, makes it absolutely clear to anyone who is not blind where Netanyahu stands on the issue of Judea and Samaria.

Even if we assume that Netanyahu’s declared support for the two-state solution is just a bluff, as Danny Danon would want us to believe, it’s still an extremely damaging bluff since the public assertions of a Prime Minister, and a Likud one at that, only increase the expectations of the world, making it that much more difficult for Israel to eventually change direction and choose another path.

Personally I don’t buy the bluff theory and I’m certain that what the Prime Minister says, the Prime Minister means. However since Netanyahu, unlike Livni, cannot fully come out of the closet, he continues to veer leftward ideologically yet simultaneously continues to hide behind the cozy confines of the Likud. Although such behavior might be a bit schizophrenic and has probably fooled quite a few people, it’s one that has greatly benefited Netanyahu since it’s enabled him to stay on top for quite some time.

The question is, when will someone finally blow the whistle? Although in the past there were several Likud MKs who were openly critical of Netanyahu’s increasingly leftward leanings, unfortunately most of them have apparently been stricken with an acute case of laryngitis ever since the Prime Minister appointed them to be Deputy Ministers. Their silence is not only deafening but it’s truly tragic since it’s inadvertently inching the country that much closer to the point of no return vis-à-vis the two-state solution.

Similarly, for far too long many good rank and file Likud members have been defending Netanyahu saying, “He’s the best possible leader of all the bad options”. The question is, what are these people going to say after he affixes his signature to a document that officially proclaims an Arab state in Judea and Samara? Will they be mesmerized by the star-studded White House ceremony or made proud by the Nobel Peace Prize that is certain to follow? This is no longer a hypothetical question as day by day Netanyahu, perhaps as part of a deal with America concerning Iran, is dragging Israel in the direction that would make both Barack Obama and Jimmy Carter proud.

This September will mark twenty years since the Labor government of Yitzhak Rabin launched the tragic Oslo process and in doing so began digging our national grave. Will the current government under the leadership of Benjamin Netanyahu close the coffin by signing away Judea and Samaria? If Netanyahu continues to hide behind the cover of the Likud, and everyone allows him to get away with it, then unfortunately there’s a very good chance that Netanyahu is going to sign that piece of paper on the White House lawn.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Relationships Yossi Vardi Credits Pushy Jewish Mother for His Startup Success

    Yossi Vardi Credits Pushy Jewish Mother for His Startup Success

    Millionaire entrepreneur Yossi Vardi credited his success in start-ups to his Jewish mother continuously pushing him to do better, Daily Mail reported on Thursday. “Jewish mothers are never satisfied and nothing is ever good enough,” he said, adding that his mother, who died 15 years ago, used to compare him with his cousins and say he was “an idiot.” “For most of my life I have been trying to show her I’m not,” he continued. “I keep on trying even now.” Vardi, […]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada Seth Rogen Unveils New Christmas Movie — ‘Will Open on Thanksgiving, Made by Jews’ (VIDEO)

    Seth Rogen Unveils New Christmas Movie — ‘Will Open on Thanksgiving, Made by Jews’ (VIDEO)

    Famed actor Seth Rogen on Tuesday unveiled with typical comic fanfare the trailer for his new Christmas film. The movie “was made by Jews… and opens on Thanksgiving,” Rogen pointed out on Twitter. The Night Before tells the tale of three “ride or die homies” celebrating one last debauchery-filled Christmas Eve reunion before they become too busy to keep up their annual tradition. In an effort to make the night as memorable as possible, they set out to find the “Nutcracka Ball – the […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish History Art Can Inspire Faith; It Can Also Empower Destructive Ideologies

    Art Can Inspire Faith; It Can Also Empower Destructive Ideologies

    A June 2015 art exhibit, “The Transformative Power of Art,” at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, harnessed the universal language of art to convey an important message: “Our fragile Mother Earth faces the devastating consequences of climate change, a defining challenge of our time.” The exhibit also included sixteen portraits of people from all over the world who have “contributed to the common good of humanity in one way or another and have transformed the way we […]

    Read more →
  • Israel Sports Israeli Muslim Cage Fighter Says He’s Proud to Fight Under Jewish State’s Flag

    Israeli Muslim Cage Fighter Says He’s Proud to Fight Under Jewish State’s Flag

    A 32-year-old Circassian Israeli Muslim Mixed Martial Arts fighter from Abu Ghosh says he takes pride in fighting under the Israeli flag, Israel’s Walla reported on Sunday. Like most Circassian Israelis, Jackie “the Punishment” Gosh was born Sunni Muslim. He became observant about eight years ago, and is now scrupulous in following his religion’s tenets, praying five times a day and fasting during the holy month of Ramadan. Gosh is also very proud of his Israeli nationality, and sees no contradiction between […]

    Read more →
  • Israel Music New Mark Skinner Documentary Explores Jewish, Arab Rap Scene in Israel (VIDEO)

    New Mark Skinner Documentary Explores Jewish, Arab Rap Scene in Israel (VIDEO)

    A new documentary explores the lives and work of Jewish and Arab rappers in Israel and how the ongoing conflict in the region has impacted their lyrics, the U.K.’s Jewish Chronicle reported on Thursday. Hip Hop in the Holy Land is a six-part series co-directed by Mike Skinner, the British frontman of hip-hop group The Streets, and produced by Noisey, a music channel published by Vice news. The first episode, published last week, shows Skinner meeting with Tamer Nafar, the founder of one of […]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada 49ers Running Back Jarryd Hayne Apologizes for ‘Hurtful’ Jesus Tweets

    49ers Running Back Jarryd Hayne Apologizes for ‘Hurtful’ Jesus Tweets

    New 49ers running back and Australian rugby star Jarryd Hayne apologized on Wednesday for a tweet in which he raised the age-old myth that Jews were historically responsible for Jesus Christ’s death. Reaching out to his Jewish fans, and the chairman of the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission, Hayne tweeted: “To the Jewish community @DvirAbramovich #WeAreAllOne.” Underneath, he keenly included a screenshot of a text message to elaborate on his apology: “I sincerely apologize for my tweets on July 1. I […]

    Read more →
  • Theater Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Recalls Being ‘Extremely Surprised’ at Winning Miss Israel Contest

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Recalls Being ‘Extremely Surprised’ at Winning Miss Israel Contest

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot reminisced about her childhood in Israel during an interview published in this month’s edition of Vanity Fair. “I don’t remember this, but my mom told me that when I was three they threw a party on the rooftop of the house. They put me to bed, and I heard people coming into the house and no one came to me. I went to the rooftop and took a hose and I started to spray water on everyone, just […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Features Wounded Israeli Soldiers Unite With American Veterans to Help Their ‘Brothers for Life’ Heal (INTERVIEW)

    Wounded Israeli Soldiers Unite With American Veterans to Help Their ‘Brothers for Life’ Heal (INTERVIEW)

    An Israeli organization is helping wounded U.S. veterans move past their physical and psychological challenges by connecting them with injured Israeli soldiers who understand what they’ve been through. “What we discovered very early is that there’s no ‘professional, psychiatrist, social worker’ or anything like that [or] pills that can come even close to helping a soldier who fought in combat, who was wounded, who lost his friends. No one can help him like another person who’s been through exactly what he has,” Rabbi Chaim Levine, […]

    Read more →