Netanyahu Returns

In June 2021, just 18 months ago, I wrote

“Israel’s Prime Minister for the past 12 years, Benjamin Netanyahu, is officially out of power.  In his place is Naftali Bennett who was sworn in as Israel’s new prime minister on Sunday, after winning a confidence vote with the narrowest of margins, just 60 votes to 59.

What this will mean remains to be seen.  Over the past 12 years, Netanyahu has dominated Israeli politics. He’s not only successfully implemented a series of right-wing policies, such as entrenching Israel’s presence in the West Bank, but also consolidated a dangerous amount of power in his own hands. He is currently on trial for corruption charges stemming from, among other things, his attempt to buy off media outlets.”

Given the amount of turmoil and political chaos here in the U.S. over the past several years, it’s no surprise that I have not kept up as much as I would like with events ‘round the globe, so imagine my shock when I read last month that Netanyahu will be returning to power.  According to an article on November 3rd in Al Jazeera …

A coalition led by the right-wing former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has won a majority of seats in the 120-seat parliament, or Knesset, allowing the controversial figure to return to power.

Final election results announced on Thursday show that Netanyahu and his ultranationalist allies – many of whom were considered beyond the pale in Israeli politics only a few years ago – won 64 seats in the 120-seat parliament, with 32 of those seats going to Netanyahu’s party, Likud.

As prime minister-delegate, Netanyahu is in the process of forming Israel’s most extreme right-wing government to date.  Two groups of people stand to lose the most in the immediate future:  Palestinians and the LGBTQ community.  A moving article by a Palestinian lawyer, Diana Buttu, helps us understand some of the trepidation by Palestinians living in the West Bank, saying that, “The atmosphere of racism is so acute that I hesitate to speak or read Arabic on public transportation. Palestinian rights have been pushed to the back burner.”

I find it amazing that a nation populated by the descendants of the most persecuted people ever in history can be so bigoted against another group of people.  Did the Jewish people learn nothing from the fact that another racist, Adolf Hitler, was directly responsible for murdering some six million of their grandparent’s generation, for trying to eradicate their entire populace?  I’ve said before that Netanyahu is a bigot, and that so many were willing to vote his party back into power, knowing he would be once again elevated to Prime Minister, makes me wonder what the people of Israel are thinking … or are they even thinking?  Are they like some portion of people in this country who don’t think about who would be the best leader, but rather who puts on the best show?

Already Netanyahu’s new coalition allies are pondering laws against the LGBTQ community.  Netanyahu is set to form the most ultranationalist and religious government in Israel’s history between his Likud movement and several openly anti-LGBTQ parties. This has raised fears among Israel’s LGBTQ community that the new government, expected to take office in the coming week, will roll back gains made for LGBTQ rights in Israel in recent years.  Netanyahu insists that there will be no harm to LGBTQ rights in his upcoming government, but already several of his coalition partners are planning to curtail the rights of the LGBTQ community.

One member of the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, has posited that hospitals should be allowed to refuse to serve LGBTQ people.  Another said that private business owners, such as hotel operators, should be allowed to refuse service to LGBTQ “if it harms their religious feelings.”  Harms their religious feelings???  WTF???

Again, I shake my head at the bigotry coming out of a country peopled by those who suffered the most from the same sort of bigotry 70 years ago.  I see no good to come out of Netanyahu’s return to power and I find it highly puzzling.  Netanyahu is set to be sworn in on Thursday, although I understand there are still some hurdles to be scaled before that can happen.  On an international level, I see this as yet one more right-wing authoritarian regime being added and I find it deeply concerning.

17 thoughts on “Netanyahu Returns

  1. Jill, the old truism holds serve. “Power corrupts.” This is why we must be vigilant as citizens and is the best argument for term limits. It matters not political affiliation, the temptation is there for all. It is also a truism that outgoing elected officials tend to have more wealth than incoming elected officials. Why? Insider trading and undue influence of illicit donors. Full stop. Keith

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    • I’ve long been an advocate for term limits. Grassley, McConnell, and yes even Pelosi and Schumer … I think Congress would benefit from some younger blood, although not if it’s going to welcome people like George Santos, Marge Greene, Matt Gaetz et al. They seem to look under the rocks to find the sleaziest!


  2. They come back like a bad penny these Nethanyahus, Trumps, Farages… and I start to think the people of Israel might have learned from the best in being tribal and racist 😑 What a menace Hitler and those of my ancestors who supported him have unleashed 😪

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  3. It seems to be an act of vengeance, in my mind. For centuries Jews have been persecuted, and now it is their turn to be the persecutors. If Netanyahu consolidates his power, we are liable to have a return of Apartheid. Even Israelis who are considered “coloured” may find themselves powerless, knowing Netanyahu’s past. They may be Jewish, but they won’t be the “right” Jewish. And being non-heterosexual might become a capital crime. I hope I am wrong, but I do ‘t feel wrong. History repeats itself in the strangest and most unexpected of ways.
    Another blow to life. Next thing you know, Jewish women may find themselves without legal status, Oh, I do not like where my premonitions are heading…

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    • I think it’s about time we realize that we are ALL humans facing the same needs. Doesn’t matter what religion/skin colour/gender/sexual identity/nationality … we are all humans. Until we can realize that and put aside petty bickering over irrelevant differences, we are doomed to failure as a species.


  4. But dare criticising Israel’s genocide of the Palestinian people and you’re marked an anti-semite, a fuxn nazi. 😮 I’m quarter Jewish, lost great grandma in Hitler’s concentration camp, my gramps ended up in prison cause he refused to divorce from his Jewish wife, and my bastard dad was a forced labourer, ffs! 😐 In the end it saved his life tho. While he was at home building bunkers for the nazis, his whole school class was wiped out in Stalingrad.

    So I was always a fried of Israel back when I was young and naive – even worked for 2 weeks in a kibbuz during school vacations. Nowadays I hate Israel’s politics.

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  5. Pingback: Netanyahu Returns | Ned Hamson's Second Line View of the News

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