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The Government That Israel Must Have

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What did the election achieve? First, for the first time in a decade, there appears to be a realistic possibility of removing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from power. The achievement of a bloc – 56 or 57 Knesset seats including the Joint List of Arab parties or 63 to 65 seats adding on Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu – makes this possible.

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Second, at the last minute both Democratic Union and Labor-Gesher stayed above the electoral threshold. Their absence from the Knesset would have guaranteed Netanyahu a bloc of at least 61 MKs and paved the way for another right-wing government with him at the helm.

The importance of this result cannot be exaggerated; Israeli democracy this week was only a few inches from being Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey. And the threat to its existence hasn’t been totally lifted: a government led by Netanyahu – who’s fighting desperately to escape the wrath of justice – designed to pass a law letting the Knesset override Supreme Court rulings, thereby neutering the court and establishing a dictatorship. In other words, a regime in which a person, or small group of people, control all three branches of government: the executive, legislature and........

© Haaretz