Photo: Ohad Zwigenberg
Netanyahu. Stop whining
Photo: Ohad Zwigenberg
Shimon Shiffer

Netanyahu’s grotesque campaign

Op-ed: The prime minister’s increasingly outlandish claims in recent days show we are dealing with a leader whose judgment, according to John Kerry at least, is questionable.

"Had it not been for the action I took against Iran, it would surely be in possession today of several atomic bombs," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday in one of the countless interviews he gave on the eve of the elections.



If the prime minister really believes what he said, he is worthy of another title to add to those he already boasts of – disconnected. Seriously? He has single-handedly prevented Iran from being in possession already now of nuclear bombs? It's not even funny.


If he is so desperate in light of the unflattering polls that he is willing to voice bold-faced lies and assume the qualities of a magician, then we, the voters, would be well advised to head for our bomb shelters because we are dealing with a leader whose judgment, according to US Secretary of State John Kerry at least, is questionable.


Not everything was permissible in this grotesque campaign, the aim of which was to remain in power at all costs. In other words, even if it turns out that Netanyahu is forced to vacate the Prime Minister's Residence on Balfour Street in Jerusalem, there is still no reason that could justify the hysteria he's been conveying in recent days.


Benjamin Netanyahu. No reason can justify his hysteria in recent days (Photo: EPA) (Photo: EPA)
Benjamin Netanyahu. No reason can justify his hysteria in recent days (Photo: EPA)


We're not dealing with the "danger," as Netanyahu puts it, of the rise to power of a left-wing government, but with the free elections that he called some three months ago. Netanyahu has stood at the helm for more than nine years, and perhaps he should learn something from another leader from his party, the late Menachem Begin, who believed that a government that remained in power for extended periods of time posed a threat to the freedom of the nation and the morals of its people. Begin also wrote that the essence of democracy is the option to facilitate a change in government, noting that there is a great deal of truth to the notion that power corrupts.


I advise Netanyahu to stop whining, and I'm referring to his statements about "forces" that have joined together to topple him. Netanyahu has the advantage of being the prime minister. To a certain extent, he can determine the public agenda and take advantage of the governmental resources at his disposal. So what's all the wailing about?


Elsewhere, the election campaign would have included a serious discussion of all the issues that unfortunately weren't tackled here – including what happened last summer, in which for the first time, an evil terrorist organization forced kindergarten children across the country to huddle frightened in shelters as barrages of rocketsrained down on our cities.


And there was no serious discussion about the collapse of the health and education systems and the high cost of living on Netanyahu's long watch. These things must be said: Netanyahu was an absent prime minister. He did not do a thing for which we elect the leadership of the country.


Former British prime minister Oliver Cromwell dissolved parliament in 1653 and delivered an address in which he said: "It is high time for me to put an end to your sitting in this place, which you have dishonored by your contempt of all virtue, and defiled by your practice of every vice." The British leader ended his speech with the unforgettable words, "In the name of God, go!"


Bibi, it's time for you to step down from the stage and call in the movers to collect your belongings from the house on Balfour Street. But be careful this time around. Whatever belongs in the official residence should remain there. You don't want anyone to open another investigation, do you?


פרסום ראשון: 03.17.15, 20:13
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