Left-wing Americans weren’t happy when the Democratic Party nominated the center-left Joe Biden for the presidency, but, unlike in 2016, few sat out the election.
Nor there were major spoiler candidates on the right. Voting for Hillary Clinton was apparently too much to ask of five million Donald Trump skeptics in 2016, who voted for libertarian Gary Johnson or conservative Evan McMullin. They could have tipped the election in Clinton’s favor.
In 2020, Democrats wisely nominated the least divisive old white guy they could find and anti-Trumpers voted like the republic depended on it. Biden won fifteen million more votes than Clinton and flipped five states, handing him a comfortable Electoral College victory.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu saw the largest protests against him in nearly a decade on Saturday, when some 10,000 rallied outside his residence in Jerusalem and outside his private home in the coastal town of Caesarea.
The protesters are upset about Netanyahu’s handling of the outbreak of coronavirus in Israel and his remaining in power despite standing trial for corruption.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s declared intention to annex the West Bank has sparked intense debate in Israel. Although many Israelis seem to favor annexation, the consensus among security experts, including military professionals, is that such a move would have severe negative repercussions for the Jewish state’s security, its standing in the world and the prospects of peace with the Palestinians.
They fear Netanyahu will pander to right-wing voters, emboldened by the American president, Donald Trump, whose own peace plan would allow Israel to annex up to 30 percent of the West Bank, including the Jordan Valley, in exchange for ceding territories on the Egyptian border to a Palestinian state. (A part of the plan Netanyahu has, unsurprisingly, said nothing about.) Read more “Why Netanyahu Won’t Annex the West Bank”
Donald Trump has finally unveiled his “deal of the century” for peace and prosperity in the Middle East — and set the region ablaze with criticism.
The president’s plan recognizes Israeli control over most, if not all, of the settlements in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank), excludes most of Jerusalem from a future Palestinian state and accepts Israel’s position that “refugees” (the descendants of Palestinians who were displaced in the 1948 war) will be resettled outside Israel.
With less than a month left in his presidency, Barack Obama has managed to infuriate the Israeli right by hardening America’s stance on the construction of West Bank settlements.
Whatever the merits of their quarrel with the American president, though — and there are leftwingers in Israel and Jewish supporters of Obama in the United States who are disappointed as well — the over-the-top reaction from the Israeli right is unjustified and, more importantly, ill-advised. Read more “Israeli Right Jeopardizes Alliance by Hectoring Obama”
A bit of armchair psychology is required to answer that question. Based on the way way he conducts himself and the many profiles I’ve read about the man, I think it’s safe to say that a powerful motivator was his desire to prove himself. Read more “The Trouble with Electing an Outsider”
It looks certain now that Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu will draw Avigdor Lieberman and his nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party into the ruling coalition, expanding his parliamentary majority by five seats. Lieberman, a hawk and former foreign minister, would become defense minister in the new arrangement, replacing Moshe Ya’alon.
The news comes after speculation that Netanyahu was working out a deal with Labor’s Isaac Herzog instead.
Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu has secured a majority for his fourth government but lost the support of an ally, making him more vulnerable to demands from the far right.
“Israel now has a government,” Naftali Bennett, the leader of the nationalist Jewish Home party, told reporters after hours of talks with Netanyahu’s Likud.
Bennett served as economy minister in Netanyahu’s last government. The position is now expected to go to one of the Orthodox parties.
The new finance minister will be Moshe Kahlon, a Likud defector who formed his own party, Kulanu, to campaign on cost-of-living issues. He won ten seats in the March election.
Jewish Home lost four seats, ending up with eight. Israeli media reported it would still get three cabinet posts: education, justice and possibly agriculture.
Netanyahu earlier signed deals with Kulanu and the two religious parties, Shah and United Torah Judaism.
The former negotiated a raise in salaries for soldiers and the extension of unemployment insurance to the self-employed; the latter won a freeze in legislation that would have phased out the exemption for Orthodox Jews from military service as well reductions in cutbacks on child allowances and religious schools.
With Jewish Home in his coalition, Netanyahu commands a one-seat majority in the Knesset.
Avigdor Lieberman was expected to join the government but stepped down as foreign minister after his right-wing nationalist party, Yisrael Beiteinu, lost more than half its seats in the election.
Netanyahu is keeping the foreign ministry for himself.
Israel’s Channel 2 reports that the premier had hoped to lure Labor Party leader Isaac Herzog into the government by giving him the post, but both Labor and Likud have denied this.
In alliance with the centrist Hatnuah party, the left won 24 seats while Netanyahu’s Likud got thirty.
Herzog immediately criticized the new government, saying it was “susceptible to blackmail” and predicating that it would “quickly be replaced by a responsible and hopeful alternative.”