In the last elections I voted Blue&White. Here’s why:
1. Bibi has been in office for a long time, and as much as some see him as an artist at rhetoric and the only person fit to lead this country, it seems that he’s busier keeping his seat and avoiding prosecution than moving the country forward. His attitude has been choosing the path of least resistance, while not really taking any action. He won’t implement a two-state solution, but he won’t build settlements. He wants to keep everything status quo including his JOB. Giving a vote to any of the right wing parties was basically giving a vote to Bibi.
2. Gantz was my commander in the army. He was a very middle of the road, fair commander. He had good logic, and was respected by most. As we know, he later became Chief of Staff. On the other hand, when he spoke, he wasn’t authoratative like Bibi, and didn’t have clear solutions for Israel’s problems. However, I felt it was time for a change, and he seemed like he could be the right man for the job.
Bibi tried to portray Blue&White as a Left Wing party (like he’s doing now to Lieberman), but in reality, it was a mixed bag-middle of the road party with people like Bogie Ya’alon who actually left Likud to join. Although I didn’t love Lapid’s attitude towards religion, there was something intellectually honest about him that I could relate to or somehow tolerate.
The outcome we all know, the magician (Bibi) came out on top again, winning the election but choosing to drag us yet to another election in order to avoid going to prison. Gantz and Lapid had different reactions to the outcome. Lapid was seen with in an undershirt at Ben Gurion Airport, preparing to fly abroad. He lost. He needed a vacation. Fair enough. His attire was quite surprising, given that he’s not a simpleton, rather a member of Knesset who represents segments of the population, and should dress accordingly. Furthermore, the day after the election should have been a time to thank the voters who believed in him, and prepare the strategy ahead. Instead, he left the country in his white undershirt.
Gantz’s reaction was very bold. He came out saying that he would make life miserable for Bibi’s government. Seriously? That’s all he had to say? Making life miserable for the government. Mmmm. Interesting. What about a positive agenda? What about sharing a new strategy, a new plan, a new solution? What about sharing love and hope for a better tomorrow for your voters? A party that builds itself on hatred won’t survive for long. The people want hope, not rage.
Finally, a person is measured not by how he wins, rather how he loses. When you win it’s easy to be a gentleman, to be positive and to be leader-like. The real test is how you deal with adversity, how you take a loss. This is the time when peoples’ true colors show. Blue&White was a nice idea, and it did succeed to some extent, but watching them lose gave me deeper insight to their leadership abilities. Perhaps they were not the right vehicle to bring this so desired change, or maybe they weren’t yet ready to lead.
Bibi seems to take his voters for granted. Perhaps if he sat out for one term he would understand that the voters loyalty is not something to be taken for granted but something he must be worthy of and work for, daily (and not just the month before the election). Hopefully Blue&White’s leadership, has learned valuable lessons from this last election, and drawn conclusions that will help them tighten up their game to take on this great challenge.