In his desperation, Mr. Netanyahu resorted to fear-mongering and anti-Arab attacks while failing to address the issues that Israelis said they were most worried about, namely the high cost of housing and everyday living in Israel. Although the economy has grown, the country has experienced widening income disparities and is now one of the most unequal societies in the advanced world. [New York Times]
HE THOUGHT it would be an easy election, but Benjamin Netanyahu found himself struggling to survive. What the world finally saw is the cynical, saturated anti-Arab soul of Bibi, a man who had every chance to prove he could have his own Nixon to China moment and instead picked an anti-Palestinian rallying cry that leaves Israel isolated.
How the U.S. treats the truth that has now been exposed out of Netanyahu’s near political desperation will reveal what kind of nation we will be in the 21st century.
U.S. foreign policy is now challenged directly, with the history of supporting a two-state solution opposed by Netanyahu.
Republicans on one side, Democrats on another, we’re at the tipping point beyond where the all-American political game show of Who Can Be More Pro-Israel helps our strategic interests.
How Benjamin Netanyahu won is as important as anything.
The reaction from Republicans is foreshadowing for a pattern of scorched earth they’ve followed many times before. The thrill they’re getting from Netanyahu’s showing of 30 seats, however, belies what it means for the international political consensus on acknowledging a Palestinian state.
John Podhoretz just couldn’t help himself in the New York Post.
The three-month election process was heart-stopping and melodramatic, like an old “Batman” episode from the 1960s without the camp — including the startling role played by Special Guest Villain Barack Obama doing everything in his power to take down the man he seems to have chosen as his Enemy No. 1.
The president (or his team) shipped close campaign aides to Israel to help Bibi’s opponents, and one State Department-funded group helped coordinate the line of attack.
The domestic storm to help Netanyahu began by Republican Senator Tom Cotton, who decided to challenge a sitting Democratic president on foreign policy, will benefit from Bibi’s outcome, which they’ll see as providing cover for the political provocation.
In the middle of the mess left by Israeli voters stands Israeli President Rivlin, who on Tuesday urged a unity government, obviously understanding the wider implications of Netanyahu’s dog whistles against Palestinians and Arabs that helped him win.
Holding a United Nations veto, the United States will have to face some very ugly realities. Special relationship notwithstanding, how can the American president continue to ignore the human rights imperative of the Palestinian people by continuing to veto their struggle for a state?
The two-state solution is dead under Netanyahu unless President Rivlin forces an Israeli unity government with someone to balance Bibi’s anti-Palestinian belligerence.
The result is an inflamed Palestinian leadership, themselves on the cliff of collapse, and the threat of the International Criminal Court action, while Israel acts as if all of outside pressure doesn’t matter at all.