After Israel’s tight election for prime minister Kadima Party moderate Tzipi Livni is now just ahead of right-wing Likud Party leader Benjamin Netanyahu (with 28 vs. 27 seats in the Knesset). But the real power sits with rising radical Avigdor Lieberman—an ultra-conservative who wants to establish a blanket denial of all Arabs for citizenship—who can throw his support to either to determine who becomes prime minister. (He said he’s open to talking with both but will no doubt side with fellow hard-liner Netanyahu.)
This is not good news.It’s not good for anyone. Jews and non-Jews, Israelis and non-, and bad not only for those who want to see a just, fair, and reasoned outcome, because what is just is relative, but for anyone who don’t want to live, and have their kids live, in a war-ravaged country where their disenfranchised enemies have nowhere else to go, nothing else to turn to, than radical suicide-bombing, missile-firing jihad.
A Livni government would have meant a new approach to Israel’s Palestine Problem. Namely, she promised to get rid of the illegal settlements metastasizing throughout the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem. (The settlement population grew at 120% the rate of the Israeli population in 2007, and construction accelerated last year.) Under Netanyahu, settlements will continue to grow; Lieberman lives on a settlement. Which means impossible navigation for Palestinians, and shrinking options for a people now in the midst of their own (you’re free to object in the comments), holocaust.
Livni also strongly favors a two-state solution, a sentiment shared shared by Barack Obama, and one he’s going to have a bear of a time working out with Netanyahu in office and radicals ruling the day.
Godspeed, Mr. President.