It is not entirely true that the upcoming elections
are about the quality of life. The elections are about life itself. Those who are still undecided due to the price of cottage cheese and small radish may find themselves in a few months faced with a question that will have a crucial influence on their lives: Should Israel bomb Iran?
Some say that if we do not attack and destroy Iran's nuclear
installations and the Iranians build an atomic bomb, the Zionist enterprise will be hanging in the balance. Israel's leaders will have to make a decision in April 2013, more or less, for a number of reasons. Benjamin Netanyahu, who considers the prevention of a nuclear Iran to be the country's most important goal, is wisely letting nature "take its course."
The trouble-makers Yuval Diskin
and Meir Dagan
have retired from their posts; opposers such as Benny Begin, Dan Meridor and others failed to secure a realistic spot on Likud's Knesset roster and will not be members of the next security cabinet; Ehud Barak, who is undecided, will not be defense minister come April; and the military men, Benny Gantz and Amir Eshel, will follow orders.
The politicians who will likely decide on this most important matter include Tzachi Hanegbi, who is staunchly supports an attack on Iran; Moshe Ya'alon, who had his doubts but in the end said "yea"; and Netanyahu himself, who wants to very much but realized he couldn't, at least for now. These elections are also, and perhaps mostly, about the Iranian issue. If the planes take off in April, the price of cottage cheese won't matter.
And here is some food for thought about what happened to us over the past few decades. Once, years ago, as Israelis we took pride in our attacking capabilities, in our ability to move the war almost immediately to enemy territory and in our deterrence. We threatened, as we do today, but back then we could back it up.
What are we proud of today? Of the Iron Dome missile defense system, which protects a small segment of Israel's population and instills false hope in most of the country's citizens; of the fence in the desert along the border with Egypt; the existing fence along the Lebanon border; the fence that requires fixing along the border with Syria; the separation fence in the West Bank and the fence on the Jordanian border. All of Israel is "tower and stockade." They say this is how Sparta was built. But Israel's decision-makers should look into how Sparta's story ended.