Israel on Verge of Change

The eight political parties that make up the ‘change group’ have completed the signing of coalition agreements on Friday, shortly before the 4pm deadline. That means those agreements are available for public review before the crucial Knesset meeting on Sunday 13th June.

Yair Lapid meeting with Mansour Abbas (photo: courtesy of Lapid`s office)Yair Lapid meeting with Mansour Abbas (photo courtesy of Lapid`s Office)

When the incoming Prime Minister, Naftali Bennett, signed the Yamina party agreement with the Yesh Atid party, he said:

“The signing of these agreements brings to an end two and a half years of political crisis.
The government will work for all the Israeli public - religious, secular,
ultra-Orthodox, Arab – without exception, as one.
We will work together, out of partnership and national responsibility,
and I believe we will succeed.”

Colleagues of Benjamin Netanyahu say that he is now reconciled to the fact that his 12-year tenure as Israel’s Prime Minister will end on Sunday. It seems that he has resolved to fight the so-called ‘change government’ from the opposition benches.

Netanyahu’s Likud party has also said for the first time that he is committed to enabling a ‘peaceful’ transition of power. Although that may be difficult given the extreme nature of his recent statements.

He has accused his opponents of betraying their voters, which has led to some needing special security arrangements. Netanyahu has also claimed that he is the victim of a “deep state” conspiracy:

“They are uprooting the good and replacing it with the bad and dangerous.
I fear for the destiny of the nation.”

Nir Orbach was perceived to be the member of the coalition most likely to change his mind and ruin the 61 to 59 majority. But after his initial refusal to change, he found his house surrounded by hundreds of protestors for the next four-and-a-half days.

Prompted by Benjamin Netanyahu, that extreme pressure seems to have persuaded him to stand firm with the coalition. He wrote on Facebook that the founders of Zionism aspired to build ‘an exemplary society,’ and he no longer finds such a society among supporters of the present Netanyahu government.

And while many evangelical Christians have been strong supporters of Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister of Israel, it has long been an issue that his ultra-Orthodox coalition partners are strongly opposed to Messianic Jews.

That has meant many Jews who believe in Jesus as Messiah have been unable to immigrate to Israel while Netanyahu’s government has been in power.

So, while some may regret Netanyahu losing the role of Prime Minister, others will welcome the end of his coalition’s hold on power.