Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bibi was right to be afraid.

(First and foremost,  I know all of you are wondering who I voted for in the end.  When it came down to the moment of truth, I couldn't bring myself to vote Likud.  Both my wife and I voted Ichud Leumi.)

The results are pretty much in.  For those of you who don't read Hebrew:
Likud 27
Kadima 28
Labor 13
Israel Beiteinu 15
Shas 15
Meretz 3
United Torah Judaism 5 
Ichud Leumi 4
Jewish Home 3
Ram Tal (Arab) 4
Chadash (Arab) 4

Of course these results are still not entirely final.  There is still about 0.3% of the vote that has not been counted.  This is mostly from Army bases and hospitals.  Those votes have to be counted very carefully to make sure that those people didn't vote once at their regular polling place and then again at the mobile polling place.  Once these results come in, they could be enough to shift any one of the parties at most 1 seat in either direction.

What does all of this mean?  Here's my take.

What it really boils down to is this.  Who is the real Bibi Netanyahu?  

If he is only interested in power, keeping his seat as long as possible, and looking good in the eyes of the world (especially the USA), he will work out some kind of power sharing situation with Kadima, Labor etc.

If he is truly a nationalist who wants to retain all of the Land of Israel without compromise, he will form a right wing/religious coalition.  If he does this, he will have a very stable 65 seats.  

Bibi holds the keys here.  It is next to impossible for Tzippy Livni to form a coalition if Likud refuses to join.  

This makes me very happy that I voted Ichud Leumi in the end and not Likud.  You see, we now have the perfect test scenario to know who is the real Bibi.  If Likud had a clear majority, Bibi would have been able to give in to his bad habit of turning left after he gets elected.  Now he will have to make his intentions clear from the outset.  If he chooses a Right/Religious coalition, then we will know that he meant everything that he said during the campaign.  More importantly, he will have the smaller, more right wing parties like Ichud Leumi, there to hold him to his word.
If Bibi chooses to make some kind of deal with the left, it will mean that he never intended to be strong and hold on to our land.  In that case, I will be even more happy that I didn't vote Likud!

When all is said and done. I think that this is the very best result that us right-wing-extremists could have hoped for.  At least there is a descent chance that we are going to get a government made up of parties who's sole thing in common is a desire (albeit to varying degrees) to not give away land to the Arabs.

When all is said and done, Bibi was right to be afraid.  His worst nightmare has come true.  He is not going to be left to do what he feels like.  Whichever path he chooses, he will have a strong babysitter sitting over his head making sure that he sticks to it.   

Let's hope he makes the right choice.


  1. Hello:

    Allow me to preface my comments by identifying myself as neither Jewish or Muslim and therefore has no reason to support either the Zionist or Palestinian cause. I have a question for a person such as yourself based on this from your "What About Collateral Damage" post that I believe represents your opinion:

    "The moral answer is to wage a moral war. A war who's goal is to SOLVE THE PROBLEM. That is to eject the Arab threat from our land altogether. We need transfer now!"

    The fatal flaw with this position is that the millions of Arabs cannot simply be driven out of Israel. This rather large population would need a destination, and not a single place on earth will provide it for them. Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bolivia ... you name it, none of those nations would accept a single Palestinian, let alone millions of them, and there is no way to make them. Quite the contrary, Egypt, Jordan, and all the other Muslim or Arab nations would choose all out war with Israel over being forced to accept all those refugees. Not only would the U.N. side with the countries refusing to take the Palestinians, but they themselves would be unable to take responsibility for this population because there is nowhere to resettle them. Even if there were, the Palestinians would simply refuse to go, as the UN is not into the business of using the threat of machine gun fire to herd millions of people onto ships or other relocation vehicles.

    I know that many Jews such as yourself harbor fantasies of Israel being emptied of Palestinians, but until an actual destination for the Palestinians is identified, they are just that ... fantasies. I have read in other places where such Israelis speak of "pressuring" this or that Arab state into accepting the Palestinians after Israel drives them out ... excuse me but forcing another nation to accept a foreign population against its will is a declaration of war. The nation that Israel attempts to force the Palestinians down their throat will defend itself, and their allies will help them. It honestly seems as if everyone realizes this obvious fact but the Israelis who repeat the "there are 22 Arab/Muslim states, and the Palestinians are free to pick one" mantra. The Palestinians may well be free to choose a destination, but that destination will say no, and when they do there is nothing that the Palestinians, the U.N., or anyone else will be able to do about it.

    I would be very interested in your response.

  2. Thank you very much for your comment. Your question is an excellent one that I have thought a lot about. I think I have a very good answer to it. The problem is that it requires a bit of of background to lay it out and it is going to take me about an hour to put it together. I don't have the time today for that. What I will do, God willing, is make your comment and my response into a post sometime in the next few days.

  3. Gerald Bald said, ..." excuse me but forcing another nation to accept a foreign population against its will is a declaration of war."

    Congradulations Mr. Bald, you correctly understand what the so-called "right of return" is. And the motive behind it. The destruction of Israel, were millions of Arabs be allowed to stream into Israel. And this is precisely why they make such a demand. They know Israel could never agree to such a thing. So by making that as a key demand, their real purpose is exposed.

  4. Amerisrael:

    Well, the "right of return" would be, I suppose, a reasonable line of demarcation between Palestinians that actually support a two state solution and those who do not. I would understand it if Palestinians who actually do support a two state solution were to retain the "right of return" as a negotiating point that would be conceded and dropped in the "final status" phase of negotiations. However, dropping the "right of return" any point prior to then would be foolhardy for any negotiator worth his salt.

    So, what percentage of the Palestinian population would be willing to abandon "right of return" as part of a two state solution? That is the percentage of the Palestinians that actually want to turn their backs on Syria, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt (Muslim Brotherhood), Al Qaeda, Hamas, Fatah (etc.) and live side by side with two states for two peoples in peace.

    However, that does not address my primary point with Mr. Jehoshaphat, which is that advocating the expulsion of Palestinians from Eretz Israel is not only useless but even counterproductive until a practical place for relocating the Palestinians - and also a practical plan for getting them there, for as I have stated before, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan have already made it clear that they are not taking them, and there is no way to either force or bribe them to do so - is discovered. Thank you.

  5. Just to clarify: I believe that a two state solution would only result in an all out war between Israel and Palestine shortly after, which Palestine would start but Israel would finish. After then, hopefully the Palestinians would be forced to acknowledge that they have lost and give up their long, futile struggle. And as victors, Israel, of course, would be well within their rights to whatever spoils of war they desire. However, the end result would still be with millions of Palestinians in Eretz Israel, and no place for these people to go. Which would place us right back where we started. The only difference would be Israel would be allowed to say to the international community "we gave them a state before, and look what happened!" I believe that a war would finally silence Israel's critics. And incidentally, I should point out that I am definitely not pro - war, quite the opposite, but if someone else is bent on drawing you into a war, then one has to defend itself.