Nine months and 6 days after the inauguration of the Israeli government and the coalition that brings together the “Blue and White” bloc headed by Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and the Likud party led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the 23rd Knesset is expected to dissolve automatically at midnight on Tuesday and Wednesday due to the lack of approval of the 2020 budget.
The expectation of dissolving the Knesset and going to new elections on March 23, 2021, is strengthened despite the continuing political talks between the poles of the government coalition parties with the aim of reaching understandings and a settlement that postpones the dissolution of the Knesset.
What reinforces the expectations of dissolving the Knesset is that the timetable for the budget law barely allows for a last-minute breakthrough, and the possibility of restoring cohesion to the marginal government coalition that was originally marked by the disintegration of the party partners and the internal splits of the coalition-forming parties.
In spite of the drama accompanying the Netanyahu government, who is facing corruption files and his failure to recruit the majority in a vote aimed at delaying the elections, it is technically possible to put forward the same bill with some changes, knowing that the law fell in the first reading after 47 Knesset members voted for it and 49 opposed it. As a placeholder.
However, the chances of submitting the bill again are very slim, due to the deep rift between Gantz and Netanyahu, the withdrawals of Blue and White Knesset members and Likud from both parties, and the rebellion against internal decisions by voting against a bill that would delay ratification of the state budget for two weeks, and in light of these withdrawals and the timetable What remains will be difficult to reach a solution, and therefore the most likely scenario is to go to the fourth elections within two years.
Disintegrate and change
Analysts agree that without any connection to the Knesset vote on a bill to postpone the ratification of the state budget, but this suggests the beginning of the disintegration of Blue and White and even the possibility of disappearing from the political arena, noting that recent opinion polls give him 6 seats, while the approach that accompanied the voting process suggests The fragility of the coalition government, chaos and rivalries within it, and the depth of the crisis of confidence among the poles of the government, which accelerates its disintegration.
Political analyst Akiva Eldar believes that the sure scenario is that Israel will go to a fourth election in 2021, pointing out that Netanyahu wanted to elude by delaying the vote on the state budget for two weeks, in order to avoid dissolving the Knesset and heading for elections next March, which coincides with his trial. On charges of corruption and deliberations of the trial, which will begin next February.
In his speech to Al-Jazeera Net, Eldar ruled out the resilience of this government for another period, stressing that Israel would go to settle the fund, indicating changes in the Israeli political arena and the possibility of new personalities entering and forming new blocs and alliances that might be an alternative to Blue and White and his boss Gantz, who was a candidate to form a government. But he became naive and deceived Netanyahu.
Netanyahu and Sa’ar
The political analyst explained that the alignment and alliances in the right-wing camp, and the changes in the partisan and political arena in Israel, even if they are not fundamental, indicate that the upcoming election battle will be difficult for Netanyahu, who will face parties, alliances and figures affiliated with the right-wing camp and even the center, as opposed to previous election rounds, During his election campaign, he described his political opponents as “the left.”
Eldar explained that the split of Gideon Sa’ar from Likud and the establishment of his new party, “New Hope – Unity for Israel,” which encourages the settlement project and opposes the establishment of a Palestinian state, as well as the growing strength of the coalition of right-wing parties, settlers and renewed religious Zionism headed by former Minister Naftali Bennett, transforming it to be a strong competitor to Netanyahu. Especially in the traditional right-wing camp.
Despite Likud maintaining its strength according to opinion polls, Netanyahu – as the political analyst says – is being dragged into a fourth election with poor conditions and data, whether he began his trial on corruption charges in February and the economic and social repercussions of the Corona crisis despite a virus vaccine. Sa’ar defected from Likud, with polls giving him 20 to 22 seats.
Alliances and alternatives
The same argument is adopted by the journalist specializing in Israeli affairs, Muhammad Majadleh, who indicates that the most likely scenario is that the 23rd Israeli Knesset automatically heads to its end at midnight Tuesday-Wednesday, after Netanyahu’s unexpected failure to help all Likud and Blue and White members. Internal party rebellion, and 6 members of both parties not voting for the government.
Majadele explained to Al-Jazeera Net that this situation in the government means that Netanyahu faces fourth elections within two years, which are the most difficult for two main reasons, the first reason is that the timing of the elections was imposed on him, in contrast to the three previous election battles, and the second reason is that for the first time there is a real competition for Netanyahu inside the right-wing camp represented. Basar and Bennett, which threatens to overthrow Netanyahu and the continuation of the rule of the right.
The researcher on Israeli affairs believes that the scenario of overthrowing Netanyahu with the continued rule of the right may be the satisfactory equation for the majority of Israeli society that supports and supports the right-wing orientations, which puts the Israeli political scene for the first time in the last decade before strong possibilities to sort and produce a political and party alternative to Likud as a ruling party elected from the right. Israeli.
Majadele stated that, in addition to the state of sorting and producing the political alternative to the ruling party, with the continued rule of the right, a very important shift has been noticed, which is Netanyahu’s success in marginalizing the center and left camp to a degree that can be considered non-existent.
Fateful and close
And this comes – according to the researcher on Israeli affairs – through the possible close post-election relationship between Sa’ar and Bennett and the two ultra-Orthodox parties “Shas” and “United Torah Judaism”, which over the past decade were the guarantors of the formation of Netanyahu’s governments.
On the other hand, the traditional center and left parties – Majadla says – “their impact on the political and partisan scene ranges between disjointed, collapsed and lost leadership, especially after the Blue and White experience.”
It is certain – according to the estimates of the researcher on the Israeli issue – that Netanyahu’s Likud will be the largest party after the next elections, which means that Netanyahu will remain the central player and the favorite candidate to form the next Israeli government.
But the initiation of the deliberations of his trial on corruption charges and the absence of Donald Trump from the White House, in addition to the new alliances in the right-wing camp, Majadle says, “All of these factors seriously threaten Netanyahu’s chances of obtaining the largest number of recommendations to form the next government, which keeps the upcoming elections to an extent. Large and convergent to a greater extent. “