Well, we’re heading to a new round of elections — SURPRISE! Who could’ve seen that one coming?
All indications are that this is a race for the right. Unless the center-left comes up with something so shocking and new, the right will ultimately be leading this election. The question is, what will that look like? We’ve got a bunch of returning parties like Likud and Yamina. As of now, we have one new party that’s headed by a relatively old face – Gideon Saar. The other confirmed New Hope party members are 2 “party-hoppers” and a few Likud defectors – most notably Zev Elkin. Like them or not, at this point they are familiar faces.
The majority of Israeli society is tired. Tired of Covid, lockdowns, school and business closures. And really really tired of the state of our government and politics. The leaks that have been coming out of coronavirus cabinet meetings and party negotiations have been underwhelming if not completely off-putting. Where we once felt that we had leaders that we could believe in and who would do everything in their power to do what’s best for our country, we now have ego trips and power plays.
I am a right wing voter. While I have typically voted for Naftali Bennett in the past, I have also genuinely felt that Bibi Netanyahu was the best candidate for Prime Minister. I am sad to say that I no longer feel that way. I no longer have faith that he is working solely for what is in Israel’s best interests. Unfortunately, I am not sure that I can say differently for many other members of Knesset. The same old names and faces keep circulating and, with very few exceptions, have not shown themselves to be up to the task of putting their own interests to the side. I am not naive enough to think that politicians will and should always be completely self-sacrificing, and of course ambition and power struggle will always have a part to play in politics. There does come a time though when it becomes too much. Keeping the same people around over and over again will never change anything. We need fresh faces, young faces, faces that can relate to what the average Israeli is struggling with and worries about. And I firmly believe that new blood can inspire the old guard to do and be better. We do still need experienced politicians and many of them have earned their places and still more of them deserve their chance to shine in the top spots. But let’s not rely on the old model too much – right now it’s not working. The only way forward is to change it.