Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The impossible coalition.

Subject: Israeli election, commentary,

So it seems that while Kadima is the largest party, the right wing blok, headed by Netanyahu and Likud has the larger number of sits, 65 so far. The easiest Netanyahu can do is to turn this block into a coalition government.
But can he govern with such a coalition?
Because there is another coalition partner he has to take into account.
Abu Mazen and the PA.
Because what the Oslo process had done is to permanently wedlock the political leadership of both nations. Since Oslo both leadership are each other automatic coalition partner. And that is irreversible.
Because it is bound in the realities on the ground, that we – Israelis and Palestinians are stuck with each other. It is something that the various political elements within both nations had failed to realize.
To the Zionist Israeli left Oslo was a messianic catharsis, which will purify Israel from the sin of the occupation, and a vindication of their arguments.
For the PLO it was a political and a financial bailout after been excommunicated by much of the world, including the Arab world, for supporting Saddam Hussein invasion of Kuwait.
For the settler movement and their supporters and representatives in Israel’s political echelons it was an act of betrayal and religious heresy. Such an approach was and is highly arrogant since the left and center in Israel never assigned themselves to the settlers political believe system, and they had no right to impose it on others. Let alone facilitate the murder the elected prime minister.
To the Jewish anti Zionist far left it was also an act of betrayal, for the opposite reasons. Both feared the process would work.
For Arafat, Marwan Barguti, Mustafa Barguti, and other Fatah ‘moderates’ it was a Trojan horse means to destroy Israel. But as Rabin, aware of that possibility, had said: “let him see who’s strong”. Rabin new, what Arafat had found out via Arial Sharon, that it takes more then a Trojan horse to destroy Israel.
For Hamas, Islamic jihad, Faruk Kadumi, and the entire Palestinian anti Oslo coalition based in Damascus, it was an act of surrender, a defeat. For them, the struggle, the violence, the gun, is a holy cause in their own right. And international diplomacy with Israel (and the United States) is an anathema.
All these gave Oslo plenty of reasons to fail; and it did fail – fail to bring peace.
But it did succeeded to survive.
How come?
Reality: the two nations in this holy land are stuck with each other. And once both have similar civilian political leaderships, and an internationally agreed diplomatic mechanism to communicate and settle their differences it cannot be removed.
Thus it survived the second intifada and the Arafat betrayal, which lead to it. The growth of the settlements. The rise of Hamas, who found themselves doing the Fatah heresy, talking to Israeli media. And the instability of both governments.
Oslo is still around because we both are still around.
So what is Netanyahu gonna do?
The Kadima party is made up largely from ex Likud members that realized that rejecting the path of political solution is unrealistic and irresponsible, voted in by largely center left voters that realized that blaming everything on the occupation has its limits.
Netanyahu, Silvan Shalom, Dan Meridor, Limor Livnat, and maybe even Avigdor Lieberman, know this. But within the right wing block they are quit possibly a minority. With the majority wants to hit the brick wall of Oslo realities heads (of the party) first.
So can Netanyahu govern?

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