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Want to change the system. Bennett (L) and Lapid Photo: Gil Yohanan
Want to change the system. Bennett (L) and Lapid Photo: Gil Yohanan

Forced and divided government

Op-ed: Lapid and Bennett's constant talk of 'values' and 'essence' giving PM Netanyahu a big headache

Yakir Elkariv
Published: 03.07.13, 19:47 / Israel Opinion

The discussion about the chances that the Netanyahu-Lapid-Bennett government will be able to operate successfully reminds me of the joke about the country that wanted to switch the side of the road people drive on from the right, as is customary in Israel, to the left side, like in Britain. A few wise people eventually decided to make the switch gradually: First we will transfer buses and trucks to the left side of the road, we'll see how that works, and only then will we instruct the rest of the drivers to make the switch as well.


Lapid and Bennett are entering the political system with a passion to change it, each according to his beliefs and values. But all Netanyahu wants is to keep things exactly as they are. He views any proposal or initiative for diplomatic, economic or social change as a personal threat and a challenge to his leadership and status.

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There is also the sense of humiliation. Netanyahu does not want this government, which he could have established a month ago. The prime minister never wanted to separate from his "natural partners" – the ultra-Orthodox parties whose votes are bought with money.


It seems that Bennett's and Lapid's talk of "values" and "essence" mainly gives Netanyahu a headache. What are these two babbling about? So how long will it be before these three white, rich men - as Merav Michaeli refers to them – will find out that the Israeli political system cannot contain their egos and agendas?


In my opinion, this is actually good news. The next government won't last more than Netanyahu's last government did. In the next elections, when Netanyahu will make the expected mistake and become the first prime minister in Israeli history to ask for the voters' trust a fourth time, the people will be even more fed up with him.


Israel and its political system are already prepared for the post-Netanyahu era. It will be an era in which leaders sit in their offices and think not only about whom they can screw over, but also about whom they can help. These leaders will support natural processes rather than try to thwart them.


Only when the current era ends will Israel be able to begin functioning properly. But until that time comes, the next government will not be good for Israel.



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