Beyond the Cusp

March 18, 2015

Long Night Births Hard Questions on Israeli Election Results

Filed under: Administration,Ahmed Tibi,Amalekites,Anti-Israel,Anti-Semitism,Anti-Zionist,Appeasement,Appointment,Arab Appeasement,Arab Authority,Arab World,Aryeh Deri,Assimilation,Avigdor Lieberman,Bayit Yehudi Party,Benyamin Netanyahu,Building Freeze,Calaphate,Civil Unions,Civilization,Class Warfare,Commander in Cheif,Condemning Israel,Conflict Avoidnce,Count Ballots,Defend Israel,Defense Minister,Dhimmi,Direct Elections,Ditherer in Chief,Divided Jerusalem,Domestic NGOs,East Jerusalem,Elections,Eli Yishai,Equal Responsibility,Equal Rights,Equal Treatment,Equality,Europe,European Governments,European Pressure,European Union,Executive Order,Finance Minister,Forced Solution,Foreign Funding,Foreign Minister,Foreign Minister,Foreign NGOs,Gender Issues Lobby,Government,Hanin Zoabi,Hatnua,Herzog,History,Holy Sites,Housing Minister,Internal Pressures,International Politics,Iran,Islam,Islamic Pressure,Israel,Israeli Capital City,Israeli Interests,Jerusalem,Jewish Heritage,Jewish Home,Jewish Leadership,Jewish State,Jews,Jihad,Jobs,Judea,Justice Minister,Knesset,Labor Party,Leftist Pressures,Likud,Mainstream Media,Media,Meretz,Middle East,Minimum Wage,Ministers,Muslim World,Nationalist,Netanyahu,Obama,Old City,One State Solution,Oslo Accords,Palestinian Authority,Palestinian Pressures,Parliamentary Government,Peace Process,Politicized Findings,Politics,Post-Zionist,President Obama,Prime Minister,Promised Land,Recognize Israel,Record Vote,Samaria,Same Sex Marriage,Secular Interests,Security Prisoners,Settlements,Shas,Shooting,Support Israel,Taxes,Tel Aviv,Temple Mount,Temple Mount,Tribe,Unemployment,Union Interests,United Nations,United States,United States Pressure,Validate Elections,Victims,Voting,War of Independence,World Opinion,World Pressures,Zionism,Zionist — qwertster @ 3:15 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 

With virtually all the votes counted we have the preliminary picture but the lines are fuzzy and the results produce more questions than answers. Likud is leading the pact with 29 seats with the “Zionist Camp” of Labor and Hatnua following with 24 and the Joint Arab List has 14 seats, followed by Yesh Atid with 11, Kulanu with 10, Jewish Home has 8, the Haredi parties Shas and United Torah Judaism tied at 7, Yisrael Beytenu has 6 and Meretz closes out the list with 4 seats and unfortunately Yachad party will be left out. The raw numbers would indicate a huge win for Netanyahu and loss for the “Zionist Camp” falling well behind due to Likud exceeding its lower polling and Labor-Hatnua equaling expectations. A closer look reveals where the Likud came by its higher numbers and it appears that Likud gains came at the expense of largely Jewish Home and potentially prevented Yachad from making threshold. The other obvious change has been that instead of preventing the fragmentation and reducing the number of minor parties the raising of the threshold only served to drive the smaller leftist, anti-Zionist Communist and Post=Modernist parties into a single block under the name of Arab Block and given them two to three additional mandates making Zoabi and Tibi appear all the stronger. These raw results are meaningless until the different parties, unions and blocks make their desires and support clear to President Rivlin producing a clearer picture who should be given first shot at forming a coalition.

 

The raw data would make Likud out to be the victor and to the victor go the spoils, but what spoils? The name of the game is coalition making and hopefully doing so with in kind minds and supporters of your positions. This means that any seats gained by Likud at the expense of Jewish Home makes the resultant total possessed by the two presumed to be allied parties no different and all the Likud gains from Jewish Home losses as simply rearranging the chairs on either a cruise ship or the Titanic. The truth is that Netanyahu does not really want the religious, Zionist, nationalist allied parties to be the base of his support when forming his coalition. Netanyahu wants to have as much political leeway allowing him to go in whatever direction provides him with the easiest path in the new government. By Netanyahu weakening the standing of Jewish Home, when forming any coalition now would make Yesh Atid’s Yair Lapid and Moshe Kahlon’s Kulanu parties more important and carrying a greater influence than Jewish Home and making Naftali Bennett’s voice virtually powerless and squelched while Yair Lapid and Moshe Kahlon will be the roaring lions in the government and also place them ahead of Jewish Home in choosing the Ministerial position of power in the cabinet. This will give Netanyahu the leftward freedom to ignore the demands of the Religious Zionists as he desired. Netanyahu’s ploy of assailing Jewish Home voters laying any loss he might face to Hertzog and Livni at their feet just as he had done previously except this time he did so with no apparent loss in voter totals that he faced in 2013.

 

So now we wait and see who will be chosen to form a coalition first and then suffer through six weeks of excruciatingly boring power plays which we already see Jewish Home and the Zionist and nationalists being mostly sidelined while the personal aggrandizing Yesh Atid and Kulanu parties empowering Yair Lapid and Moshe Kahlon loudly impressing their demands and thus control over the most critical areas in the next government. Lapid may demand Treasury Minister for himself and two other high position Ministerial position for his main people with Kahlon likely to demand Foreign Minister or Defense Minister and two other major Ministerial positions for his list leaving Jewish Home with second pickings of the scraps for the supporting members and a middle level leftover for Naftali Bennett. The one certainty is that the governing coalition will not be the nationalist, Zionist government that Netanyahu once again ran on but will once again claim he is prevented from pursuing due to the lack of support from, you guessed it, a weakened and ineffectual Jewish Home. As long as the religious Zionists fall for the Netanyahu cry after running a weak campaign making the certainty of his returning to the Prime Ministership a definitive possibility from the polls and then turning to the supporters of Jewish Home and the other ardent Zionist parties to vote Likud to stave off the leftist challenge then Jewish Home will be forever the bridesmaid and never the bride. Eventually the leader, be it Bennett or be it his successor or beyond down the road, assuming there is a down the road, decides to challenge and present Jewish Home as the new leadership for Israel, Netanyahu will continue to utilize this ploy of siphoning off the votes of those more Zionist than Netanyahu desires to govern with and neutering those Zionist parties from where Netanyahu glides to victory with the stolen support, then the real Zionist political power will remain neutered and voiceless in the future Likud Party led governments. For now we must wait and see what develops but be warned that the expectations of the ardent Zionists have once again been sacrificed to the Bibi and thus lower expectations are their feed in the coming government. The other reality is that it appears that Netanyahu will require Yair Lapid and his treasonous backstabbing to permit a coalition to be cobbled together, so expect new elections again in two or so years when Lapid again sees a wounded Netanyahu for his actions such as the silent building freeze or whatever other sacrifices made presumably in response to a powerful United States President Obama in order to salvage continued friendship from the White House. Anybody else notice that it is only Israel who needs to obey and bow to the will of Obama? Can bowing to golden calves or worse be far behind?

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

Advertisements

December 2, 2014

Existential Crisis Most Likely to Bring New Elections

Filed under: Abdullah Abdullah,Absolutism,Abu Mazzen,Act of War,Administration,Al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade,al-Aqsa Mosque,al-Aqsa Mosque,Amalekites,Appeasement,Appointment,Arab World,Arabs,Ariel Atias,Aryeh Deri,Avigdor Lieberman,Balanced Budget,Ballot Access,Barbarian Forces,Bashir al-Assad,Battle of Khaybar,Blood Libel,Borders,Britain,British Mandate,Budget,Cabinet,Cabinet,Caliphate,Chancellor Merkel,Civilization,Class Warfare,Coalition,Colonial Possession,Corruption,Count Ballots,Courts,Crusades,Danny Danon,Debt,Divided Jerusalem,Economy,Employment,Equal Responsibility,Equal Rights,Equal Treatment,Equality,Estonia,Eugenics,Europe,European Governments,European Union,Executive Order,Failed State,Fatah,Fatah Charter,Fayyad,Federal Reserve,Financial Crisis,Fiscal Cliff,Foreign Trade,Gaza,Germany,Golan Heights,Government,Government Control,Government Shutdown,Government Worker,Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Hussani,Green Businesses,Green Line,Haaretz,Hamas,Hamas Charter,Hate,Hatnua,Health Care,Herzog,Hevron,Hezballah,History,Holy Sites,Hunger Strike,IDF,Inquisition,Internal Pressures,Internationalist,Intifada,Iron Dome,ISIS,Islamic Jihad,Israel,Israeli Capital City,Israeli Interests,Israeli Media,Jerusalem,Jerusalem Day,Jewish Heritage,Jewish Home,Jewish Leadership,Jewish State,Jews,Jordan River,Joseph’s Tomb,Judea,Judean Hills,Justice Minister,Kever Yosef,Knesset,Labor Party,Land for Peace,League of Nations,Lebanon,Leftist Pressures,Likud,Mahmoud Abbas,Mainstream Media,Meaning of Peace,Media,Mediterranean Sea,Mercaz Harav Yeshiva,Meretz,Middle East,Middle East Media Research Institute,Ministers,Ministership,Moshe Feiglin,Moshe Yaalon,Mount of Olives Cemetary,Muhammad Abu Shahala,Muslims,Nablus,Naftali Bennett,Nahariya,Nasrallah,Nationalist,Negev Desert,Netanyahu,New York Times,Old City,One State Solution,Oslo Accords,Palestinian Authority,Parliament,Parliamentary Government,Partition Plan,Peace Process,PLO,PLO Charter,Pogroms,Politicized Findings,Post-Zionist,Power,President for Life,Price Tag Crimes,Prime Minister,Prime Minister,Prisoner Release,Promised Land,Protect Citizenry,Protective Edge,Public Service,Rabbi Yosef,Ramallah,Recognize Israel,Red Lines,Refugee Camp,Refugees,Religious Jews,Response,Response to Muslim Takeover,Response to Terrorism,Right of Return,Rock Throwing,Rocket Attacks,Roman Empire,Rome,Ron Prosser,Run-Off Elections,Saeb Erekat,Samaria,San Remo Conference,Sanctions (BDS),Security,Seige of Vienna,Senate Majority Leader,Senate Minority Leader,Separation Barrier,Settlements,Shas,Shechem,Shelly Yachimovich,Siege of Vienna,Single Payer Plan,Speaker of the House,State Legislature,Statehood,Support Israel,Syria,Tel Aviv,Temple Mount,Terror,Terrorist Release,Third Intifada,Threat of War,Tribe,Tzipi Livni,United Nations,United States,Uri Ariel,Validate Elections,Vote of No Confidence,Waqf,West Bank,World Opinion,World Pressures,Yair Lapid,Yasser Arafat,Yesh Atid Party,Yisrael Beiteinu,Yuli Edelstein,Zionism,Zionist — qwertster @ 3:40 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 

Prime Minister Netanyahu and Prime Minister in his own mind Yair Lapid had their fateful meeting where the real Prime Minister basically laid out what would be required from Yair Lapid and his party members in order to continue the current coalition. One of the problems which have struck the coalition has been the idea by the other party leaders that they should be the Prime Minister and run the government. Yair Lapid was rumored to even have attempted to patch together his own coalition and exercise a coup of sorts and take over the government through a deal with opposition parties thus forcing a new government without having new elections. Then we have the twisted dreams of Tzipi Livni who believes that she is fated to be Prime Minister because she honestly feels she has been robbed of her opportunity to lead the nation and will likely continue to pursue this phantom reality for the rest of her political life. There is the expected leader and head of the opposition parties Yitzhak Herzog, the leader of the Labor Party, has already claimed his rightful position as Prime Minister in waiting convinced that new elections will serve as the cleansing of the government of Prime Minister Netanyahu and instead bring a liberal wave sweeping Herzog into the Prime Minister slot. He was quoted speaking of the inevitable results of new elections stating, “The Labor party will lead the bloc that will win the election and give hope and a new reality for the citizens of Israel.” Apparently these Prime Ministerial candidates holding these delusional beliefs have either not read any of the polling done or they believe, as Yitzhak Herzog stated just the other day, that the polls are meaningless as they have sampled those they know and all of the people in their circle agree that new elections will place them at the head of the next government. If I were to ask those closest to me if I would win the coming elections and get to form the next coalition government I am sure that at least one or two would play along and assure me that I was not delusional, but they would also realize I was joking. Unfortunately for Israel, these Prime Minister wannabes are not joking and believe their own propaganda that they are the next chosen one.

 

This crisis was brought to a head when the proposed Jewish State Law which was intended to restate and reaffirm that Israel is the home of the Jewish People as well as a democracy where every citizen is guaranteed their respective rights as citizens. To any casual observer this law would be a no brainer but instead it became the initial protest vote where both Yair Lapid and Tzipi Livni threatened their voting against the Jewish State Law should it be brought to the Knesset for a vote. This led to rewording the bill in attempts to make it palatable to the few who insisted on remaining unappeasable. The reality is that both party leaders were actually more upset that the governing coalition refused to tow their line and follow their agendas and instead were following the agenda put forth by the Prime Minister and originally voted for as part and parcel of joining the coalition upon its formation. So, it now appears that Israel is about to go into another election with all the usual posturing and backstabbing starting with each party holding their disparate meetings or votes or some combination thereof in order to present their list of proposed Knesset Ministers for well past their polled expectations to receive once the election results are finalized. The expectations from current polling, something that is almost meaningless as elections have historically brought surprises and twists beyond belief, has Likud remaining the largest block of Ministerial positions and thus most likely to be chosen to form the next coalition. There are indications that the next largest party might be Jewish Home which will be a surprise to the leftist parties who are expecting the Israeli voters to cast off both Likud and Jewish Home in favor of Labor, Meretz and Yesh Atid. The polling has also indicated that Lapid’s Yesh Atid Party will only manage to win half the number of seats in the Knesset than they did in their initial and surprising success in their inaugural presentation before the voting public in the last election. These polls also depicted Tzipi Livni’s HaTnuah Party as barely making a minimal entry number of seats if even breaking the threshold required to be represented in the Knesset, let alone receive the nod to form the next government. The one hope all of those vying to be the next Prime Minister can invest their aspirations upon is that the least likely thing which was unexpected by all the pollsters, party leaders, experts and prognosticators and initially dismissed as insignificant can still resonate with the Israeli public while remaining below the radar and surging forth on election day to produce the unexpected results in the next elections completely throwing all the news outlets an unseen curve which they will be at a loss to explain. The elections may prove once again that there is no such thing as a sure bet when the voting public gets to make the decisions.

 

Of course new elections are not yet guaranteed as it will take a vote in the Knesset to dissolve the parliament and hold elections and there is the possibility that Yair Lapid will return to the fold and swallow his pride for the good of the coalition and by such an action garner some new supporters which always is a desired result for any politician. Lapid was given five acts he must agree to if he desires to avoid new elections. These were to stop attacking the coalition and especially to end his criticisms of the building plans in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and the Israeli relations with the United States. Next he was to transfer the six billion shekels to the defense budget as promised for their development of Iron Dome systems and armored personnel carriers. Third was to release the funding for the IDF relocation to the new Negev as was agreed upon by coalition agreements, something Lapid was blocking going so far as to have frozen this funding taking what he referred to as a principled stand. Fourth was for him to support the final version of the Jewish State Law. Finally he would be required to surrender and shelve the zero percent VAT relief bill he had been pushing for very determinedly. This final demand is expected to be the last straw and the one Lapid will refuse to meet thus likely forcing new elections.

 

One reading the polls would expect that Lapid would find it easier to remain in the current coalition where his Yesh Atid Party enjoys nineteen seats in the Knesset, a far cry better than the nine seats which many polls have indicated he would receive from new elections. The guessing here believes that Yesh Atid would probably suffer an even bigger embarrassment and only manage six or maybe seven seats and be on its way to extinction unless Yair Lapid could find a path back to the promises and apparent ideals he initially presented as the guiding essentials set forth in the last election. Those who suspected that much of the Zionist and nationalist line that Minister Lapid had professed was more ruse than ideological foundation as it was presented. These suspicions proved to be valid as once in the government Yair Lapid appeared to inexorably veer to the left and discard much of his nationalist agenda and instead attempt to inject his liberal slant into policy even at the expense of manipulating the budget which he had promised certain arrangements and allocations which he in the end did not deliver on. And this may only be the tip of the iceberg of potential changes which might be produced by holding new elections. The largest changes are always the ways in which the factions and parties arrange their own coalitions’ makeup. The most evident breakup has already taken place in which the one-time marriage of Likud with Yisrael Beiteinu which will also mean that Avigdor Lieberman will be leading his own party rather than being second on the combined ticket with Bibi Netanyahu taking the top slot. Netanyahu is probably expected by most to continue to take the top slot on any Likud ticket but that may not be as guaranteed as one might believe. There will be a credible challenge to Netanyahu in the voting for the Likud ticket as Danny Danon is expected to give Netanyahu a challenge from the right and even more nationalistic Zionist side of the party. We could potentially see a Likud ticket with a new face at the helm which may signal a changing of the guard within Likud even should Danny Danon fall short in his challenge. Danon is definitely one of the future leaders in Likud and the time is rapidly approaching for these new leaders to step forth. Other than the breakup of Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu, there may be other alterations to more parties and combinations than could be readily covered in this article and are best left for after the parties have all filed and made public their intents. Then there will be the leadership challenges in parties other than Likud. We have to wait and see if the somewhat controversial leader of Jewish Home, Naftali Bennett, remains the top man on their ticket and whether they will continue with their current makeup or if some factions might go it on their own. Then there may be a contest for the leadership position of the Haredi parties, largely concerning in Shas and whether the more liberal and left leaning Arye Deri remains in the number one slot or if Eli Yishai or Ariel Atias will make a successful challenge from the more nationalist and right leaning side of the party. With the passing of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef there can now be a true contest for the leadership of the Shas Party. Labor just recently had a change in leadership with Yitzhak Herzog taking the top spot replacing Shelly Yachimovitch. After all is said and done the next government may very well have a similar outward appearance to the current coalition but within there will be some changes, just how many and how far this difference proves to be remains to be seen. If Likud has a new person topping their ticket, such a change could excite the electorate or perhaps the shock of Bibi Netanyahu being replaced will be too much for the Israeli public. Then there are some polls which have shown Jewish Home Party actually replacing Likud as the leader in the Knesset and thus very likely making their first name on their Knesset list the next Prime Minister. It still remains to be seen if that name will continue to be Naftali Bennett. And then again, there is still hope for yours truly as, after all, those I have talked to still hold out hope for me to be picked to form the next government, and why not? Talk about strange happenings, that would take the cake.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

March 11, 2013

Shas Reacts Facing the Unthinkable

In the entire history of the state of Israel, Shas has been included as part of the ruling coalition ever since its inception going into elections for the eleventh Knesset without concern for the political alignment, be it right, left, Zionist or any other conceivable alignment except for the sixteenth Knesset under Prime Minister Sharon. This has made the leadership of the Shas Party begin to expect that they would be included in every government going forward as they have proven to be loyal members of coalitions led by Labor or Likud and anyone inbetween. As such, the Shas leadership now has to deal with not being included in the next ruling coalition for only the second time since their inception and they are definitely not pleased with this situation. This begs the question of whether or not any party can rightfully view themselves as indispensable to any ruling coalition and what leads the membership of Shas to have such beliefs.

 

It is actually understandable why Shas has been able to join governing coalitions without regard to most of the political considerations which affect other parties. Shas is only beholden to the Sephardic Haredi population and as such has a very narrow definition of concerns. With such a specific and narrowly defined membership, Shas can be accommodated in any governing coalition without sacrificing any of the more secular principles which often go into the formation of a coalition. Shas would appear to favor more religious Jewish values which are also considered to be at least in part the basics for Likud, Labor and most of the other Israeli Jewish political parties and as such pose no difficulties for the inclusion of Shas in a government. Simply all the major party forming a coalition need implement to have Shas as a member party is to grant them the demands for Torah worship funding including stipends for their adult students, especially those with families, so they may study full time and not need to hold employment and also give those students of Torah deferment from military or public service requirements. This had not been a problem as it had been established through the Tal Law. That came crashing down when Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch annulled the Tal Law as a parting gift when she stepped down from her position. The Tal Law was in need of replacement as the Haredi portion of the Israeli society has grown to the point where it is becoming unfeasible to continue to carry them on the backs of the rest of the country and excuse them from any responsibility solely so they are free to study Torah and only study Torah. The transition had already shown the early signs of stirrings and would have been accomplished, albeit slowly, but it was being addressed. By annulling the Tal Law the government was faced with a pressing situation which more resembled a crisis than having to address a gradual change altering perceptions over time. This made Shas the political hot potato of this election cycle and was further exacerbated by Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid Party making the immediate enlistment and end of deferrals for almost all Torah students which placed them totally at odds with Shas. This led to a predicament where only one of the two political parties would be able to join the ruling coalition if either were to be included. As Lapid reached an agreement with Naftali Bennett of the Jewish Home Party that they would join their Knesset seats together and join a coalition or the opposition as one party. This left Prime Minister Netanyahu with a choice, either include both Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid Party and Naftali Bennett’s Jewish Home Party or allow Shas to join his coalition. Apparently Shas will end up on the losing end of such a choice.

 

The resulting anger and recriminations which have emanated from the Shas membership and leadership both during the campaign and the ensuing coalition negotiations has been, shall we say, less than cordial or polite. Their vindictive rhetoric towards Yair Lapid and his party’s secular core which demanded equal sharing of the burden was predictable but their venomous outpourings at Naftali Bennett did come as a surprise to some, especially members of the Jewish Home Party. It will remain to be seen if the uncomely actions and accusations from some Shas members, particularly their newly returned leader, Aryeh Deri, have shocked many and left a rather putrid aroma over the whole coalition building scene. Their demands and appearance of feeling owed a position in the next government would affect adversely any regular party in upcoming elections. Not so Shas as their support comes from a close knit community which is obliged by their Rabbis to vote for Shas and without considerations of anything other than supporting their community at the expense of all else. This is part of why they are immune to normal influences that might cripple other parties and why they appear to garner the same portion of Knesset seats election after election. It will remain to be seen if the discipline to keep the members of Shas dependent upon their party once their insular community is no longer supported separate from the rest of Israeli society. Once they are no longer permitted universal deferment from IDF or public service it is possible that their world and societal views may change and outside influences may forever alter their previously closed society.

 

There is one item that also must be addressed if one is to be fair to the Haredi community. They have not exactly been accepted with open arms by those outside their community. Where there may be some credibility to the excuse that the Haredi have not exactly made enormous efforts to be accepted by the outside society, those outside of the Haredi community share at least an equal amount of blame for not making the Haredi accepted or make efforts to make the outside world accessible for the strictly religious. The lack of understanding has been shared by both sides of this debate and any solution is going to require sacrifices and efforts by both communities. Where the Haredi community has been portrayed by the secular media and secular society as a bunch of freaks living in a backwards and exclusive community, there has not exactly been any real efforts made to make the secular society accessible to the Haredi or to be sensitive to their culture and societal rules and standards. Much of the public discussion has been of a nature to criticize the Haredi with little effort put forth towards understanding and acceptance. The Haredi have just as much right to live according to traditional rules as the secular society has to ignore those very same rules which their ancestors no more than a few short generations ago lived by. That is the one small fact that many in the secular community ignore that they are not that far removed from the exact same societal structures and strict rules of the Haredi in their own families. Where it is true that the Haredi are going to need to join Israeli society and start to pull their fair share of the burden, it is also going to be necessary that the secular make adjustment which allows the Haredi to share the burden while not forcing them to abandon their principles and traditions. It is a two way street and neither side is going to be able to demand of the other that they forfeit their way of life and the lifestyle to which they are accustomed. If both are to share the burden, then both will also be burdened with making Israel a place which respects and accommodates both in equal amounts. The extent to which such accommodations and adjustments are made will be the measure to the tolerance and respect both societies are able to grant the other. The one truth is that the future of Israel is dependent upon a shared effort and interest in working together instead of competing for prevalence.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.