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Benjamin Netanyahu Tag

The last time we checked in on the dysfunctional Israel elections, it looked like Bibi Netanyahu's Likud Party had won a sweeping election -- the third in a year -- which would allow it to put together a right-wing coalition government. BUT WAIT, then the exit polls were off and the actual results still had Likud in the lead, but without the ability to put together a ruling coalition. A majority of Knesset members said they would back Blue-and-White challenger for Prime Minister Benny Gantz, leading Israel's President to give Gantz the 'mandate' to form a government....

The magician pulls another rabbit out of his hat. The last we checked, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fell just short in his effort to build a ruling coalition after the third election in a year ended in stalemate again. Rival Benny Gantz' Blue and White coalition was given the nod to try to form a government, but as we reported, that was unlikely, Bye-Bye Bibi, hello Prime Minister Benny Gantz? (maybe, maybe not):

Israel is heading for a third election in eleven months after repeated rounds of negotiations failed to yield a coalition government. In consecutive elections, which took place in April and September, neither Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party nor the opposition Blue and White alliance managed to secure a majority in a 120-seat Knesset, Israel's parliament.

Israel held an election after the last election left the nominal winner, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party, unable to form a majority coalition. This time around, the result may be the same. Based on exit polls, which have been wrong in the past, there is no clear 'winner' -- keep in mind it's not like here where one party gets a majority. In Israel, whoever is able to form a coalition of 61 Knesset seats is the winner, and that can take days or weeks.

Many in the media and policy circles are fretting about the effect Benjamin Netanyahu's reelection will have on the peace process. But few are examining the true impediment to peace: the Palestine Authority. A recent Washington Post article took the approach that a Netanyahu victory "clouds prospects" for the success of the Trump administration's yet-to-revealed peace plan. Though the article refers to the Palestinians, it doesn't mention the Palestinian Authority, PA President Mahmoud Abbas, or Hamas.

With election day on Tuesday, April 9, in Israel, will Benjamin Netanyahu win his fourth consecutive bid (and fifth overall) to become Israel's prime ministe Or will he be displaced by a ticket headed by Benny Gantz, two other former chiefs of staff, and former journalist Yair Lapid? Lori Lowenthal Marcus provides a synopsis of the parties and process. Haviv Rettig Gur has a more comprehensive overview at Mosaic.

Then-president Obama's Iran Nuclear Deal was widely condemned on the right and by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who referred to the deal as a "bad" and "very bad deal."  One of then-candidate Trump's campaign promises was to extract the the U.S. from this very bad deal, and he did so in the second year of his presidency. Much to the chagrin of Democrats, the DNC, and the former Obama administration, this withdrawal from the Iran deal has been far more successful in stopping Iran from obtaining nuclear capabilities and from sponsoring worldwide terrorism than the original, bad deal was sold to accomplish.
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