Is there an alternative for Israel?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)

Judging from the recent polls, the prime minister, minister of foreign affairs, minister of health, and minister of defense – Benjamin Netanyahu will very likely assume kingship once again.

It is speculated that Netanyahu’s Likud party is likely to horde the majority of the Knesset seats. Data varies from survey to survey, but all largely agree on 29-30 seats for Likud, while the second largest political force squeezing 13 at worst and 16 at best. We are talking about the left-centrist parties of Zionist Union, Yesh Atid, and the brand new party of Benny Gantz, Hosen LeIsrael.

Benny Gantz seems like the most promising new candidate on the political scene, but even his participation in the race is not a significant game changer. Gantz is likely to chip away at the seats of the centrist-left camp, leaving Bibi fans loyal to their leader.

The motto of the upcoming election, similar to the previous one is – “who else is there?” And it doesn’t seem to bother the majority of voters as to the fact that Netanyahu is facing possible indictment over bribery. Israelis have a saying “if it’s working, don’t touch it.” The people prefer to look the other way regarding certain issues and not rock the boat.

Putting Bibi and Benny aside, as important as they are in the upcoming race, the main character could very likely be Avichai Mandelblit the Attorney General of Israel, who still has to review the accusations and testimonies against Netanyahu and decide if he’s going to file an indictment against him. In case this happens after elections are held, it can bring about the downfall of the next government and lead to additional elections on short notice, which will cost the economy a lot and could cause more public distrust of the system.

With the government remaining unchanged, it will probably fail to provide its right-wing voters the products of promise. Settlement regulation laws will continue to fail, the conduct with the Palestinian Authority and terrorists will continue to be flimsy, and monopolies will continue to dictate the prices on everything. Things have been done, but not to the extent of promises made, nor to the expectations of voters who will once again drop the same envelopes and get same results.

Israel has a golden opportunity with the conservative American government propelling them on the international arena – such strong right-wing governments on both sides is likely to not repeat itself. The Knesset has to seize this opportunity, as it can act more freely with Donald Trump in office, receiving encouragement from the Christian Zionist movement. In a couple years the political scene in America may change, and being Israel’s strongest ally, can hinder a right-wing government on the international stage for whatever agenda it may try to push.

It comes to mind that even David, being the man after God’s heart, on his deathbed instructed the execution of his political enemies. Being the author of Psalms and many Messianic prophesies, it teaches us that power corrupts even the most virtuous of men. Netanyahu is a great leader, but his time has come to step down, maybe take the role of an advisor, but at this rate change will fail to come.

Does Israel have the prospects of positive change, or is there truly no alternative?