Israeli News: A Daily Analysis

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A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman

February 20, 2009--Netanyahu Get Official Nod to Form to Government

Today President Peres officially gave MK Netanyahu the responsibility of forming a new government. Netanyahu has 45 days to put together the government. He can ask for an extension of another two weeks. Netanyahu had stated in the past that he would first turn to his 'natural coalition partners' (from the right) to form a new government. Instead he announced that he would meet first with Livni and then with Barak in an attempt to form a new unity government. That is not likely to happen since Livni has made it clear that she prefers to remain in the opposition, and most of her party seems to support that idea. While there is always a chance that Netanyahu is now willing to double cross his right wing supporters and enter into a real coalition with Livni and Barak without the right and religious, but it is quite unlikely…..

There was a difficult piece on Channel 10's weekend magazine show. The piece examined the cost of Hamas' demands for the release of Shalit. The segment revisited the sites that the terrorists that Hamas wants released destroyed. They want to release the planners of Sbarro attack, the Hebrew University cafeteria, the Moment Café and many others. The magazine interviewed fathers of young terror victims. One made fun of the term "at any price" by asking if Hamas said bring 10 Israelis to the fence and then kill them and then they would release Shalit, would anyone listen.

Leaving aside the natural emotional feelings of parents of victims, all independent analysis state that agreeing to anything close to what Hamas is demanding will permanently solidify Hamas' rule in Gaza and probably lead to their eventual control of the West Bank. Israelis are not having a real discussion about what this deal means and are deciding emotionally, in the same way an academic political analysis said most of them voted in the election, not based on any understanding of the positions of the parties or their views, but emotionally.