The latest “round of fighting” between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the State of Israel ended with Netanyahu’s surrender. On Wednesday, three hours before the High Court of Justice was going to hold a hearing on the illegal appointment of Ofir Akunis as justice minister, Netanyahu decided to appoint Kahol Lavan chairman Benny Gantz to the post in the transition government. The appointment was approved in a telephone vote. The criminal defendant also announced that he plans to bring other ministerial appointments to the cabinet for a vote on Sunday.
One cannot dismiss the seriousness of what transpired. Netanyahu, as is his wont, set out on a brainwashing operation to distort what had happened and get the public to believe that the illegal was actually legal, the crooked actually straight, and the con man actually the victim. “The prime minister submitted a detailed response to the High Court that categorically denies the claim that the discussion held yesterday in the cabinet was unlawful,” the prime minister’s announcement said. He added that he has the authority to name a justice minister and that the court and the attorney general “are not an uber-government.”
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It’s always the same method: It’s not he who publicly violated the Basic Law that he himself legislated, it’s once again that gang of conspirators headed by Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit, the prosecution, Gideon Sa’ar, Naftali Bennett and the wife of Zeev Elkin, who framed him and are leading a regime-change effort to crown “the left” and Ibtisam Mara’ana.
The truth is far simpler. As Mendelblit explained, under the rotation government clause – an amendment to the Basic Law on the Government that Netanyahu himself cooked up as part of his plot to set up a rotation government and dismantle it just before it was time to actually implement the rotation – there cannot be votes on ministerial appointments without the agreement of both blocs, and the head of the Gantz bloc didn’t agree to the appointment of Akunis. Period.
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Although Netanyahu backed down on this, it’s only a matter of time until the next eruption. Netanyahu will do anything to stay in power, and he is backed by a gang of blind sycophants, who instead of restraining him have totally submitted to his authority. A long list of ministers and MKs preferred to embarrass their claims and themselves, just so the boss wouldn’t get angry at them. The great damage that Netanyahu has done to democracy, the rule of law and proper administration is their fault as well.
The heads of the change bloc, who watched what was happening in horror, must let go of the ideological differences between them, harsh and bitter as they may be, and establish a government that will bring an end to this toxic regime, headed by a man who is threatening Israel’s future. To conduct the ideological battle between right and left, it must first be assured that Israeli democracy is still standing.
The above article is Haaretz’s lead editorial, as published in the Hebrew and English newspapers in Israel.