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benny gantz

  • How Netanyahu mainstreamed his dark, anti-democratic vision for Israel

    By attacking the judiciary, bringing extremists into his coalition, and trying to subvert voting rights, Benjamin Netanyahu has presented a dark vision of an anti-democratic future for Israeli politics. By Harry Reis Benjamin Netanyahu emerged from September’s repeat elections a failure. Denied his desired majority, the prime minister’s only real hope of retaining power now depends on building a national unity government with Blue and White, a party that has pledged never to sit with him so long as the cloud of pending indictment looms over his head. But the stakes of the election outcome are far higher than the…

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  • In Israel, ‘politics as usual’ means escalating Palestinian oppression

    Three trends from Israel's do-over election demonstrate that the more Israeli politics stay the same, the more dangerous its policies become. There are many moments in Israeli-Palestinian history where landmark developments seem to change nothing and everything at the same time. Israel’s September election is one of them. While featuring many familiar and predictable patterns, the latest political contest has also exposed novel shifts that could significantly alter the conflict’s dynamics. Three key and interconnected trends that reflect this paradox can be drawn from the election, all of which present crucial strategic questions for the Palestinian struggle in the years ahead. [tmwinpost]…

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  • ‘For those who want peace, replacing Zionism is inevitable’

    For many Palestinians in the West Bank, the minor shifts in Israeli politics are a long-awaited opportunity to challenge the traditional understanding of the occupation. By Yuval Abraham Ahmad, a former officer with the Palestinian Authority’s intelligence forces, retired two years ago. Every morning for 23 years — since the PA was established — he would drive to his office in Ramallah and deal with security issues. He experienced the political upheavals of the past two decades on the ground, including the collapse of the peace talks, the Second Intifada, Benjamin Netanyahu’s rule, the building of the separation wall, and the expansion of the…

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  • PODCAST: What does Israeli liberalism look like?

    Public opinion expert Dahlia Scheindlin argues that the fierce debate over the separation of religion and state in Israel’s latest elections could lead to a wider liberal shift in society. By +972 Magazine Staff Listen here: iTunes/Apple Podcasts | Google Play | Spotify Almost two weeks after Israeli voters cast their ballots for a second time this year, it is still unclear which candidate will lead the country. To make sense of all this, The +972 Podcast spoke with leading public opinion analyst Dahlia Scheindlin, who says not much has changed since the April elections.  On the outcome of elections: “It’s hard to see where we’re going to get any…

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  • Likud vs Likud: How Revisionist Zionism conquered Israeli politics

    Israel's elections have been billed as a clash of the titans between Netanyahu and Gantz. But no matter who wins, the real victory goes to Vladimir Jabotinsky, the grandfather of the Likud. In what should be regarded as a historic photograph taken last Monday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the head of the Likud party, and Benny Gantz, the head of the Blue and White party, sat gripping one another's hands for the camera with President Reuven Rivlin, who was arbitrating their meeting in his Jerusalem office. Rivlin, himself a former Likud member, was urging the two leaders to form a national unity government following last week’s election…

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  • An election between annexationists and pro-occupation generals

    Palestinians have no say over whether they will be ruled by messianic religious zealots or by generals who previously presided over the occupation. On September 17, Israelis will return to the polls for round two of an election cycle that failed to determine an outcome in April, this time hoping for a different result. While there are some substantive differences between incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and former IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, when it comes to peace with the Palestinians the outcome matters much less. Neither Netanyahu nor Gantz is inclined or capable of positively altering the reality…

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  • Voting Netanyahu out is not going to 'save' Israel-Palestine

    Israeli citizens are about to vote in national elections for the second time in six months. But has anything changed since April? Why is no one talking about the occupation? And are we really about to see the end of the Netanyahu era? +972 writers talk about why these elections matter. Israeli voters will head to the polls for the second time in six months on Tuesday. It has been a short but brutish campaign, in which the racism, rabble-rousing, and mudslinging that have come to dominate Israeli election cycles seem more extreme than ever. [tmwinpost] Benjamin Netanyahu, embattled and paranoid, has…

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  • What do Palestinians in Gaza really think about the Israeli elections?

    On the eve of the elections, four young Palestinians in Gaza open up about their thoughts on Israeli political parties, whether they think there's hope for change, and what life is like under siege.  By Yuval Abraham Muhammad The electricity cuts out at 2pm in Gaza, but Muhammad has charged his phone in advance so he’ll have enough battery for our conversation. I call him on Facebook Video, and when he answers, he’s wearing a white vest and dripping with sweat. “Is it this hot where you are too?” he laughs, and I nod, look over at the fan in my room. [tmwinpost] I’ve…

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  • Arabs in Israel want to join the government. You'll never guess who's stopping them

    Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh said he would be willing to consider joining a center-left coalition, prompting a response from Israel's centrist party that reveals the true face of those who hope to replace Netanyahu. I do not know whether Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh is a diligent paramedic or a doctor preparing for the long-term treatment of a 72-year-old patient suffering from chronic illnesses such as racism and Zionism. In either case, the patient is suddenly showing signs of life. [tmwinpost] All it took was a single interview with Odeh with a top journalist in one of Israel’s largest newspapers last week, in which the member of Knesset said he…

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  • Not just toxic masculinity: Militarism also feeds gender-based violence

    In a society dominated by male hierarchies, violence is not only a pervasive symptom but a defining feature — especially for Palestinian women.  The Israeli media has been awash with reports over the past week about the case of a dozen Israeli male teenagers, some minors, accused of gang-raping a 19-year-old female British tourist in the Cyprus resort town of Ayia Napa. The victim told local police the youths pinned her down while some of them filmed the rape on their mobile phones. [tmwinpost] The Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel blasted Israeli media for their coverage of the…

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  • The origins of Israeli racism lie in our hyper-militarized society

    Israel was established and continues to exist in a mentality of constant war. Our racism is only a symptom. One of the most influential institutions in Iranian politics is the Guardian Council. Among its many roles, the Council filters out presidential candidates, deciding who can and who cannot run in the elections. It even has the power to disqualify former presidents, such as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, from running again. And as befits a religious dictatorship, its considerations are far from democratic. [tmwinpost] And yet, after Ehud Barak announced his return to Israeli politics last week, I couldn’t help but envy the power…

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  • The biggest myth about Israeli politics

    It’s tempting to believe that non-politicians are the antidote to bad politicians, but it's also wrong. In 2011, the Israeli pop singer Roni Superstar released a song called “Adoni” — literally “my lord,” or colloquially, “sir.” For sarcastic overtones, “His highness” will also do. Here is my free translation: “His Highness will tell me what he knows/ His Highness will make sense of what I ought to think… His Highness wishes to be Prime Minister… His Highness thinks he is so smart…” The otherwise banal song kept surfacing in my mind during the last election cycle. Something about it seemed apposite.…

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  • Why the Zionist left died this week

    Stuck in a Zionist paradigm, Israel's mainstream left-wing parties are unable to put forth a vision of equality and inclusion for all in Israel-Palestine. Tuesday’s election results were obvious to anyone paying attention. Although Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party and rival Benny Gantz’s Blue and White won the same number of Knesset seats, Gantz has already conceded to Netanyahu, acknowledging that he does not have enough partners to form a governing coalition. Netanyahu will form a government with his “natural allies,” among them the far-right and ultra-Orthodox parties. [tmwinpost] One of the most important stories that has been largely overlooked, however, is the…

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