“We are demanding change,” Ben Guvir said late Tuesday. , indicated that it had become the Knesset, the third-largest party in the Israeli parliament.
“We demand a complete distinction between those who are loyal to Israel and whom we have no problems with, and those who undermine our precious country.” Dancing to thumping house music, they chanted, “Oh! Who is that? The next prime minister!” and “Death to the terrorists!”
Israeli Elections: Far-Right Politicians Close to Power
When the extent of his victory was revealed on Tuesday night, Netanyahu told cheering supporters, “We want our country to take back the national pride that was taken from us.”
With more than 85% of the votes counted by Wednesday afternoon, Netanyahu’s return to power is all but certain. Projections by Israel’s three largest TV news channels have given the Netanyahu-led bloc his 65 seats out of his 62, more than enough for a majority in the 120-seat Knesset.
The bloc, led by centrist Yesh Atid and caretaker prime minister Yair Rapid, is expected to win about 50 seats, with Rapid beginning preparations for the transition on Wednesday.
A Netanyahu-led government will unite far-right religious Zionism with ultra-orthodox Shas Party and United Torah Judaism, making it the most religious and right-wing in Israel’s history.
“The extremist right is entrenched here and becoming the third largest party in the Israeli parliament is a concern for all pro-democracy parties,” said Gail Tarsir, a political scientist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. I think it’s a sign of that,” he said.
Critics fear the new government will implement laws that will further undermine Israel’s beleaguered democracy.Last month, religious Zionists canceled Netanyahu’s ongoing corruption trial announced a judicial reform bill called the Law and Justice Plan. For years, Netanyahu has falsely claimed that the lawsuit was a “witch hunt” orchestrated by the Israeli left.
More broadly, these changes will perpetuate state corruption, give politicians greater influence over judicial appointments, and serve as the last bastion of Israeli liberal democracy to overthrow laws that violate human rights. could complicate the Supreme Court effort, which is viewed as one of
According to pollster Dahlia Shindlin, two issues driving the rise of the right wing are “the theme of the legal system as the Deep State” and the escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict over the past decade.
Netanyahu and his allies have sought to spread distrust of the judicial system and the attorney general. “He wants the public to see [the judiciary] It’s deceptive, politicized, compelling and conspiratorial,” Shindlin said.
The election also reflects a hardening of views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A surge in Palestinian attacks since the spring has fueled calls for a crackdown on Palestinians and a free hand for Israeli settlers in the West Bank. 2022 is expected to be the worst year for Palestinians since the United Nations began keeping records in 2005, due to intensifying Israeli attacks on the West Bank.
After Israeli elections, it is the Palestinians who need to vote
Ben Gvir has roots in the Kach party, a racist party founded by radical American rabbi Meir Kahane and banned by Israel. He made a career as a lawyer defending violent Jewish settlers and has been repeatedly accused of inciting violence himself. A photograph of Baruch Goldstein, who killed 29 Muslim worshipers in the 1994 Hebron mosque massacre, hung in his living room.
Supporters told The Washington Post on Tuesday that they would support the formal annexation of Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories and insist that alleged Palestinian militants be killed rather than imprisoned, so Ben Gubir. said he voted for
Ben Gvir requested to be appointed Minister of Public Security, a post that oversees the police. Opponents, including some members of Israel’s security services, have warned that such a move would be dangerous for Israel and raise the prospect of large-scale escalation with the Palestinians.
The National Unity Party, led by Defense Minister Benny Gantz, said ahead of the election that Ben Gubir, as head of public security, would “ignite the country from within”.
According to Israel’s Central Election Commission, voter turnout in the election was Israel’s fifth in less than four years, at 71.3%. Despite widespread fatigue, Israeli voter turnout is about 4 percentage points higher than last year.
A final vote number, not expected until Thursday afternoon or Friday morning, could push Israel’s smaller parties over the electoral threshold and complicate Netanyahu’s path to power, but such an outcome seems unlikely.
Rapid’s campaign relied on securing the support of smaller parties, but this gamble did not seem to pay off. The left-wing Labor party barely passed his four-seat limit, while another left-wing party, Merez and the Arab party, Balad, remained below that number.
The voter turnout of Palestinian citizens in Israel, who typically have lower voter turnout than Jewish Israelis, was noted as a potential determinant of elections. There are approximately 2 million Palestinian citizens in Israel, many descended from families who remained in Israel after her 1948 founding, and many Palestinians have been forced to flee their homes or flee.
Last year’s elections saw the Islamist Laam party become the first Arab party to join Israel’s coalition government. But ahead of the elections, Palestinian voters expressed disillusionment with Arab politicians and the Jewish-dominated political system.
Israelis in Palestine are divided and disillusioned as elections draw near
Last-minute pressure by politicians and Palestinian groups to win votes appears to have paid off – Arab voter turnout was estimated at around 54%, according to analysis by the aChord Center at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. A 10 percent increase from the last election.
But a split in Palestinian politics means Arab parties are likely to take fewer seats than they did last year. The nationalist Balad Party broke off from the joint roster, attracting voters unwilling to cooperate with Jewish parties.
Lucy Zumot, 69, a Palestinian Israeli citizen, said Balad party leader Sami Abu Shahade was “saying the right things”, including that “we are in the profession and we will never forget it.” That’s why I voted for Ballad.
Speaking at a polling station in East Jerusalem on Tuesday, Zumot said he wanted the government to “give me all my rights like a Jew and stop fighting.”
Tarsir said Barad’s strong performance on Tuesday showed growing support, especially among young Arab voters. Not converted.
Meanwhile, the 5.5 million Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip have had no say in the process, despite Israel’s new right-wing government pledging to strengthen its occupation vise. did.
Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said Wednesday that the rise of the far-right is “a natural consequence of the spread of extremism and racism in Israeli society, which our people have suffered for years.”
In East Jerusalem, many Palestinians have special residency status, allowing them to live in Israel but not vote.
Among them is Mohamed Saraneh, 35, who works in a dessert shop in the mixed Arab-Jewish city of Ramla in central Israel.
“We must have Arab representation in the Knesset,” he said. “I live with [Israeli citizens], the same state. you should be able to vote. ”
Rubin reported from Tel Aviv. His Sufian Taha of Bethlehem contributed to this report.