Politics? Not Again!

Our distinguished President Reuven Rivlin has lost his “cool”. He is frustrated and angry that talks between Netanyahu and Gantz have so-far failed to reach an agreement. The president has made ultimatums, particularly to Netanyahu, who the president feels is the source of the dissention.

He has set a deadline on which an agreement must be signed or new elections, for the fourth time in a year, will be called. How successful another round of elections will be is doubtful. How many voters will want to go to the polling stations with large crowds? They believe it will be better to stay at home and let the High Court make the decisions for establishing a new government.

Readers, largely from anglo backgrounds, still fail after so many years in Israel to understand how our rotten and corrupt-filled political system really works (when it is, at least, working). We are not Canada nor Australia. We are a tiny nation dominated by a corrupt government.

We need to change our political system at once. We have more than 38 political parties, mostly small splinter groups. We need no more than four (4) political parties and they are: Right wing, left wing, religious and Arab. Those four parties should be able to include every Israeli voter.

In the past few years of Netanyahu’s “one-man” rule (his own) we have seen more indecisiveness and false statements, some at the level of a dictatorship.

President Rivlin has given an ultimatum. Either sign an agreement at once or we shall go to new elections.

If Bibi Netanyahu is smart (which he is, only sometimes) he would conclude that it would be best for him to voluntarily step down due to illness brought on by tensions and fatigue.

Surely it would be a better thing for him to consider rather than being booted out by legislation or elections.

On the other hand, if Bibi receives a mandate to form a government, the petition to the High Court demanding that no indicted person can hold the position of prime minister may be accepted by the court.

That, of course, would be more humiliating to Netanyahu. Besides his Likud party there are not many others in Knesset or in political huddles who would want another Netanyahu-led government.

Should Bibi begin packing his suitcases and personal belongings in preparation to exit the prime minister’s residence on rehov Balfour in Jerusalem? Don’t ask him. Ask only Sara. She makes the decisions.

President Rivlin is old and tired and yet continues working feverishly on behalf of the nation. He does not need more aggravation. We should applaud his forthright ultimatum to Netanyahu. Form a unity government with Benny Gantz, sign the agreement, end the stubbornness, or take a leave of absence from governing (a permanent leave many of us hope for).

Gantz wants his party to have control of the judiciary and authority of selecting judges to our courts.

Netanyahu opposes it and demands that those functions be given to Likud and its political allies.

They are stuck in finding an agreement. Yamina, under Naftali Bennett, is fuming that so many of the highest cabinet and ministerial offices have been given to the Blue and White party, thus alienating Yamina in its relationship to Likud.

Experts inform us that no coronavirus vaccine will be available before the coming 12 – 18 months.

Hopefully those same experts can invent a vaccine that will put Israel’s political system into a sleep… one that will last for 20 years.

The author Washington Irving wrote a charming story about Rip van Winkle who fell asleep for twenty years. When he awoke he did not recognize where he was nor the people in the town.

Wouldn’t it be nice if Binyamin Netanyahu could fall asleep for twenty year? When he would awake he would be 90 years old. Too old to damage our government, our State and our people.

Well— I can dream, can’t I?

About the Author
Esor Ben-Sorek is a retired professor of Hebrew, Biblical literature & history of Israel. Conversant in 8 languages: Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, German, Spanish, Polish & Dutch. Very proud of being an Israeli citizen. A follower of Trumpeldor & Jabotinsky & Begin.
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