Politicians in the Zionist State of Israel working to oust embattled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a new coalition government agreement that opens the door to remove the longtime leader. The announcement by opposition leader Yair Lapid and his main coalition partner Naftali Bennett, came June 2, after meeting a midnight deadline by less than an hour.
The agreement spared the settler occupier state from needing a fifth consecutive election in just over two years. If the agreement is ratified by the Israeli parliament, the two leaders are expected to split the premiership in two-year increments, with Mr. Bennett serving first.
“This government will work for all the citizens of Israel,” Mr. Lapid declared. “Those that voted for it and those that didn’t. It will do everything to unite Israeli society,” he added.
Mr. Lapid and his Yesh Atid party was charged with establishing a coalition government by outgoing Israeli President Reuven Rivlin after Mr. Netanyahu who ruled 15 years total and 12 years consecutively failed the same in four attempts. Mr. Bennett was Mr. Netanyahu’s chief of staff during the mid-2000s before breaking with the Likud Party and founding what became his current Yamina party. The agreement must still be approved by the Knesset.
In a May 3 tweet, Mr. Netanyahu lashed out to discourage political support for the move which some say is also a betrayal by Mr. Bennett, a past ally and prodigy of Mr. Netanyahu.
“All legislators elected by votes from the right must oppose this dangerous left-wing government,” wrote Mr. Netanyahu, getting ahead of the upcoming vote of confidence in the Knesset to either accept or reject the government.
There is doubt the coalition of small right, left, central and Israeli Arab parties representing Palestinians with Israeli citizenship will hold long.
Observers told The Final Call the eight-party alliance is a weak marriage of convenience wrought with contention. Their singular agreement is expelling Netanyahu, who is also wading the muddy waters of a corruption trial, which if convicted can land him in prison.
The small United Arab List party is the first Arab party ever to be part of a governing coalition in Israel. Although it is not likely to play a formal role in a Lapid-Bennett coalition, their government would rely on its support to pass the confidence vote in the Parliament.
No substantive change from the “change government” is expected in light of an agreement to stay clear of the core Israeli settler-occupier and Palestinian occupied issues for the first year. Nitzan Horowitz who leads the Meretz Party, told reporters he believed the “basis for working together” lays in the addressing practical, technocratic issues like infrastructure matters.
With the coalition makeup critics see the “change government” as no change at all for the Palestinians who suffered under successive Zionist governments for over seven decades.
“There has been no substantive difference in the agenda and behavior of Zionist governments, and their assorted facilitators, from Apartheid Israel’s official beginning—1948 until today” said Mauri’ Saalakhan, founding president of The Aaffia Foundation. “Take them for what they say … and do,” he added.
Mr. Saalakhan was referring to volatile words of Naftali Bennett, the next possible premier, stating he harbors no inhibitions on slaying Arabs. He is an Israeli born son of American Jews, past Minister of Defense from 2019 to 2020, an ultra-right settler leader and staunch opposer of Palestinian statehood. “I’ve killed lots of Arabs in my life,” said Mr. Bennett in controversial remarks at one time. “And there’s no problem with that.”
Mr. Bennett has a long history of anti-Palestinian, racist extremist views. In 2013 the 49-year-old politician told the New Yorker magazine that only a “sucker” would believe there would be peace with the Palestinians, much less an independent state.
“I will do everything in my power to make sure they never get a state,” he told the New Yorker. “No more illusions,” he said.
Hamas, the Palestinian resistance group which controls the Gaza Strip, told Reuters it made no difference who governs Israel. “Palestinians have seen dozens of Israeli governments throughout history, right, left, center, as they call it. But all of them have been hostile when it comes to the rights of our Palestinian people and they all had hostile policies of expansionism,” stated spokesman Hazem Qassem.
According to Press TV, the Iranian press agency, the anti-Netanyahu coalition have stated there will be no “settlement freeze.”
Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip have dismissed a change in Israeli administration, saying Bennett, who is due to replace Netanyahu under a patchwork coalition, would likely pursue the same right-wing agenda, reported presstv.ir.
“There is no difference between one Israeli leader and another. … When it comes to us, they are all bad, and they all refuse to give the Palestinians their rights and their land,” Ahmed Rezik, 29, a government worker in Gaza, said, according to the Iranian news agency.
Mr. Saalakhan added, he found it interesting in a “twisted kind of sense” the involvement of the Palestinian party helping the coalition become a government. Despite the 11-day military assault on occupied territories in May killing nearly 300 Palestinians and destroying infrastructure and property.
Their presence is “shocking and it’s sad,” said Mr. Saalakhan. He pointed out it’s a contradiction for Arabs in the Knesset to be subjected to Mr. Bennett’s views as part of his coalition government in order to be accepted and have what appears to be some semblance of power.
“You have to swallow that and go along with it and remain in a coalition stitched together with characters like this,” Mr. Saalakhan explained.
The Washington, D.C.-based activist told The Final Call the disunity of Palestinian leadership opens the door of such exploitation. “If they were more willing to work together in unity and not allow the Zionists to exploit their petty differences for the benefit of the Zionist agenda, the Palestinian people would be in a much stronger position,” said Mr. Saalakhan.
The political infighting of the occupier state for Palestinians is a Zionist thing that exist regardless of illegal annexing, forced evictions, and acute oppression of Palestinians.
“This government is going to be largely transitional in character,” said Walter Smolerek, an organizer with the pro peace A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition.
He noted its significant because Mr. Netanyahu was the person that three U.S. presidents have had relationships with. “But in terms of policy … Israeli occupation … military aggression … new settlements, I think it’s highly unlikely that this will change,” said Mr. Smolerek.
For decades, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam has warned Israel that it has not had any peace and would not have any peace because “the peace that you want is on your terms.”
“Why would the Palestinians not want a ‘separate state?’ Why wouldn’t they want their own people that have been made vagabonds in the Earth to have the right of return to their native land? Why would you say you want ‘two nations, side-by side’ living in peace—but you will never allow the Palestinians to be armed, to protect the sovereignty of a Palestinian state?” the Minister stated during Part 12 of his 2013 lecture series, “The Time and What Must Be Done.”
“You will never allow them (Palestinians) the weapons that would allow them to protect their own airspace. You know that. And I know that. So what kind of ‘sovereignty’ will they have with no ability to protect themselves from any outside force? No, I am sorry … There will be no ‘peace’ with Israel and the Palestinians,” he warned. (Final Call staff contributed to this report.)