It took Israeli politics nearly a year to get back to square one.
That’s the basic fact to understand about the third round of general voting held within a year. While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is right to claim the vote as a personal victory, it is only by comparison to his near defeat last September that it can be viewed as a great triumph. Israel’s crazy political system may have exhausted and infuriated its citizens, but the three contests held in this period changed very little about the way the country is governed.
Though it shouldn’t have taken three elections to clarify that point, when Netanyahu goes, it will be either of his own volition (something that he doesn’t seem to contemplate in the foreseeable future) or because the judicial system takes him down. As long as his fate is in the hands of the voters, he will remain prime minister.
These are two basic facts about the country that its foreign friends, and especially its critics, should take to heart.
The process did give birth to a new party – the Blue and White – whose sole goal was to unseat the prime minister. Continue Reading….