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with all due respect

Reader comment on item: About Those Billboards in Israel ...
in response to reader comment: Oy Givalt, Bibi's Back

Submitted by David (United States), Nov 14, 2022 at 21:24

Haha, Saar is not a moderate, he is merely a backstabbing snake, who has always pretended to be to the right of Netanyahu and apparently, all of a sudden, is to the left, improbably. By some coincidence, there are rumors of court cases against him. Ditto Liberman, much more seriously. No moderate, merely a very unprincipled crook.
As for Raam, it is not Bibi who refused their participation, but to borrow an old Arabic phrase, "one cannot give something that one doesn't have." Israel does not have unity, it is difficult to establish working relations with an Arab minority in the absence of that, which results in the participation of such a party becoming conditional on all sorts of additional concessions, like an auction in a fish market. This was one reason why it could not work. There are others.
I find the complaints about his "failure" to deal with Iran to be tendentious, given that he had to work for years against scandalously insubordinate members at the highest levels of Israel's security establishment, who refused to even PLAN for an operation to take out the Iranian nuclear sites when American public support was high, in 2011. When he finally placed an IDF Chief of Staff in command and a Mossad Chief who understood the severity of the threat, he was replaced by a political leadership that largely did not. With mixed results. The negotiations with Iran were delayed, by Lapid's acquiescence, and probably by his payment to Hezbollah's extortion, which I noted that the author never had time to comment on.

The legal cases against Netanyahu are also incredibly circuitous, and largely involve interpretations of law that are without precedent both in the Western world and in Israel itself.

I would add that the current government's strategy of groveling to the administration has not borne fruit insofar as building regional alliances. Egypt has notably gone from thwarting an Obama sponsored effort to impose an early ceasefire on Israel in 2014, in a war against Hamas, to this past summer demanding (and receiving) the release of an Islamic Jihad terrorist after a very short operation in Gaza. Whereas UAE representatives penned eloquent support in favor of Israel's Guardian of the Walls operation in 2021, this summer they LED the UNSC debate against Israel's very short and almost inconsequential operation. And whereas Egypt coordinated with Netanyahu to garner support for sovereignty in the Jordan Valley, now they demand a Palestinian capital in Jerusalem, and reacted to the outgoing PM's speech in favor of the establishment of a Palestinian state by saying that "this is not enough."

With all due respect, the challenges facing Israel are indeed grave. There is no evidence that the outgoing government has dealt with them ably. At this hour, those in the United States who UNDERSTAND the severity of the challenges that Israel faces from its enemies on all sides, should not irresponsibly work to delegitimize the incoming government. And I would also add, a word of humility might be in order after the author claimed, a year ago, that the Likud would be a "suicide pact" if it continued to support Netanyahu, who against the author's predictions, both achieved a comeback, and an electoral victory that is the largest the right wing has ever had.

This hour calls for responsibility, and an end to careless utterances. The challenges are grave, the hostility of the Biden administration underestimated, and the impact of Obama on official Washington (whose own hostility the author himself noted is considerably underappreciated), is itself underappreciated. Significantly. This is the time for people to understand the gravity of the moment.


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