The Master

A guide for the perplexed.

Now that we know the real reason for the early elections, I wanted to ask ...

Tut, tut! Don’t go on. “We know”? The “real reason”? And what, in your opinion, is the “real reason”?

Doron Rosenblum - Eran Wolkowski - May11, 2012

Every child can tell you. Netanyahu and Barak decided between them to move up the elections so they could finally − in the framework of a transition government − attack Iran in September-October and revel in mutual backslapping without being afraid of being punished by the voters, who will anyway be staggering about in a daze among the ruins.

A fine theory, but didn’t you ever stop to think that that’s just what they want you to think?

Who is “they”?

Bibi, Barak, Arad, Morel, Adler, Simhon ...


Simhon. Shalom Simhon. One of the confidants of ... it doesn’t matter. You figure it out. Already now we see the cunning hands of the great masters at work. They want you complacent types to start quaking in your boots again − to understand that Tehran and Tel Aviv haven’t yet been spared the blast of the blitz being devised by the dynamic duo. They want to get your adrenaline flowing again, in case you had relaxed in your easy chair, thinking the adventure had been scrapped.

And with the implicit promise of a war of deception that might destroy us, they are trying to get my vote? Excuse me for not quite understanding.

My friend, they don’t need your vote. They need your fear. They want you to fear the alternative. They want you to think about “who will get the emergency phone call at 3 A.M.”: the inexperienced Shelly Yacimovich, or the authoritative Sara Netanyahu? The person who is trying to play “prime minister” with gel, or the one who has already been playing the role for a few years with hairspray? Who would you trust to manage the next war: Mofaz, who has mongered innumerable ones in his life, or Bibi, who in three years in office hasn’t embarked on even one military adventure?

So in case of war, isn't Mofaz longer preferable?

“Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz” to you. Forget it. The man is living in even more of a movie, as people put it, than Netanyahu. They say he was a bit disappointed that posters of him weren’t distributed on Independence Day by the mass-circulation dailies; that he asked his bodyguards not to call his wife “the first lady” but just “Orit,” to bolster his folksiness. And word has it that he congratulated Hollande for being elected president of France, and Holland for ... Never mind, all these stories are unfounded anyway.

Still, I don’t get it: If Iran is not the true reason for the early elections, then what is?

You mean, besides hushing the summer protest movement?


My lips are sealed ...

It’s that serious?

... But I’ll give you a hint: Akunis.

MK Ofir Akunis? Netanyahu’s loyal servant? How is he connected to it?

By his umbilical cord. Here’s the story: A week ago, this Akunis walked through the Knesset corridors and declared unequivocally to the parliamentary correspondents: “The elections will be held in 2013 as scheduled. That is what Likud wants, and none of the coalition partners wants to break up the government and dissolve the Knesset.” That tipped the scales. On the spot, Beavis and Butt-head decided to dissolve the Knesset and hold early elections. People say that Barak and Netanyahu were guffawing and snickering so much they could barely light their cigars.

And that’s the reason that a whole country is heading into an early election? Just to kid some Akunis?

Not only because of him. Because of all the others, too. The declaration of early elections generated a kind of “cherry blossoming” that extracted the best comic moments from all the Akunises in all the parties. Especially in Kadima and Atzmaut. Believe me, it was worth moving up the elections just to see MK Ronit Tirosh from the opposition pleading, “I want to see you show responsibility, members of the coalition, and vote against dissolution of the Knesset.” It was worth dissolving the Knesset just to see MK Danny Danon, who had put forward his candidacy for president of the Likud convention against Netanyahu, say on the radio, “I think I don’t want to win. Here’s a scoop for you: I am presenting my candidacy and don’t want to be elected, in order to strengthen the prime minister.” It was worth advancing the elections just to see the display of brown-nosing by the MKs from Atzmaut. One of them, Vilnai, waxed poetic, “I know him well. I am also familiar with all the alternatives. I can smell Ehud’s sweat at night.” And how can we forget Simhon’s “I have never encountered a leader who sees as far as Ehud Barak”?


Simhon. Shaul or perhaps Shalom Simhon. The minister of ... one of the leaders of the Atzmaut party, who also condemned what Diskin said ... Forget it. And there was the delectable bit by MK Orit Noked, who stood up, childishly, and read from a page like she was declaiming at a kibbutz pageant: “And how can we not talk about The Leader? About Ehud? [Glancing at the page] Ehud Barak is a true leader [peeking again] who knows how to make courageous, responsible and purposeful decisions in real time, and [looking at the page] how to implement them.” People say Ehud Barak didn’t enjoy himself so much since the incident when he pushed Moshe Shahal in the battle for the microphones. So you tell me, should we give up all that and not hold early elections?

I don’t know ...

And that’s nothing compared to the cream puffs − the surprising candidates who will be pulled out of the hat in the months ahead. Take Lieberman, for example, who pulled out Yitzhak Shamir’s son as a counterweight to Begin’s son and Lapid’s son. I can’t wait to see whose sons the sons of Prof. Eldad and Haim Landau will pull out.

To sum up, then: Why elections now? And what are they trying to hint? That there is going to be a war, or not?

Allow me. I will explain slowly. This is the winning card of Max and Moritz. Who besides the cautious and indecisive Bibi, with his sidekick the rationalist Ehud − who besides them could behave responsibly and block the attack on Iran, which has long since become, as all the security chiefs have warned, a kind of messianic Dybbuk, an unrelenting obsession of Barak and Netanyahu?