Israel: coronavirus undermines the ruling coalition

Israel: coronavirus undermines the ruling coalition
Israel: coronavirus undermines the ruling coalition
17 July 2020, 15:26In the world
The coronavirus pandemic and economic problems in connection with this have exacerbated the already difficult relationship between the current head of the Israeli government, Benjamin Netanyahu, and his coalition partner Beni Ganz, who holds the post of Minister of Defense.

The one, who, as it is customary to say today, is the alternative Prime Minister.

Valery Rubin, Israel

Disagreements between them on a number of fundamental issues not only persisted, but also received an impetus to exacerbate as a result of the apparent inability of the cabinet for most Israelis to cope with the spread of a dangerous disease, which has already infected more than 25 thousand people and almost four hundred patients died in hospitals. Although Israel ranks 54th in the world in the anti-mortality rate, Israelis are traditionally sensitive to such statistics.

In the last days in front of the Netanyahu residence on Balfour Street in Jerusalem, numerous spontaneous rallies were held demanding him to resign. The number of supporters of the prime minister fell to previously unthinkable levels, one might say, a historical minimum. If new elections were to take place today, the opposition Yamin (requiring a “full” annexation of the territories of the West Bank), according to recent polls, would increase its representation in the Knesset to 15-16 seats, while the ruling Likud party "would lose 3 places. At the same time, on the whole, the right-religious camp is ahead of the center-left in the ratio of 2 to 1, in other words, it does not smell like a balance of power.

Nobody is talking about new snap elections yet, but the prerequisites for this remain or, more precisely, are ripening. Netanyahu and Ganz disagree on financial issues and the budget, the “scheme” of annexation, which causes a variety of senses and fermentation in society, a sense of uncertainty. On the other hand, the fall in popularity of the prime minister may prompt him to go all-in until the situation finally got out of control. In addition, there is a possibility that the government will be forced to take extreme measures, a nation-wide regime of strict isolation in the coming days, which can only add oil to the fire. And who will extinguish it if nurses threaten to start a strike: “The Association of Nurses announces that it will begin an emergency strike on July 20, 2020,” wrote Ilana Cohen, chairman of the board of directors in a letter to the directors of health funds and the Ministry of Health.

In an attempt to pacify the "rebels," the prime minister and the finance minister took a populist step - without notifying Ganz, they announced a grant package of 6 billion shekels for all citizens, without distinguishing between them who really needed help and who no, dividing it according to their marital status. However, will belated mother aid help relieve tension and bring back jobs for more than 1 million Israelis when unemployment has reached 21 percent? A new surge of coronavirus forced the Israeli Ministry of Health to close the bars and restaurants that were opened, to recommend the obligatory wearing of masks in public, other unpopular measures, such as closing beaches, as well as limiting meetings (up to 10 people) for prayers and weddings, closing synagogues and yeshiv, which caused literally rage in the quarters of ultra-Orthodox Jews, which required police intervention.

One way or another, the distribution of money to the population played a role. Dissatisfied became distinctly less, and Netanyahu was "on horseback." How long? The wick of mistrust between the prime minister and his counterpart smolders as before. There were no conditions for collaboration in the cabinet of “extraordinary unity”. There was no control over the coronavirus, for which, in fact, it was created. It turned out to build an enormous in size, unprecedented in the modern history of Israel government of 36 ministers and 16 of their deputies. For what? - a rhetorical question.

Gants is confident that Netanyahu is setting the stage for early elections and does not intend to leave the post of prime minister after a year and a half, as the agreement, consecrated by the president of the country, between the Likud and Kahol Laban parties says. In other words, he intends to deceive him, in the jargon, to "throw" him. In this case, this is not an assumption, but a real opportunity. Netanyahu used to rule alone and it is vital for him to get out of the water in a lawsuit on criminal charges.

The favorite tactic in such cases is known: bring the blame on the healthy. A senior Likud functionary (apparently with the approval of the boss) sharply criticized Ganz - and his words were quoted in the media - because he did not take the necessary measures to stop the spread of infection, he pulls the blanket (authority) over himself, and this is done for political reasons, and such behavior, they say, threatens the lives of Israeli citizens. Ganz, of course, immediately repaid the same coin.

Israeli media write that both sides still do not want to bring the situation to a split in the coalition and are making efforts to extinguish the flames of inter-party war. Will it succeed? Otherwise, the next extraordinary elections will become inevitable. The time bomb laid down in the agreement of the right-left coalition will sooner or later explode and pull the country... Where? I would not want to prophesy, according to A. Zinoviev, to "yawning heights".

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