Israel’s longest serving Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s re-election this past week, is seen by many of his over one million supporters who voted for the Likud Party as a sign from above. His triumphant return symbolizes for many an awakening, to the unsuccessful efforts of the previous government led by Yair Lapid, to weaken and dilute the national identity of Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people.
The people have arisen in response to the past year and a half and responded by voting out the unnatural alliance of progressive Israeli political parties and anti-Zionist Arab parties supported by a biased progressive media and a politicized judicial system. Instead the Israeli public voted in for the first time in Israel’s history, an exclusively nationalist and religious governing coalition. By showing up in mass, the Israeli public seemed to have wanted to send a message not only to our allies throughout the world, but also to our enemies. The Israeli public’s message was powerful, clear, and unequivocal.
We the people of Israel are unashamed to embrace Zionism, unashamed to embrace Jewish tradition and our belief in God. We will not refrain from asserting our uniqueness as a Jewish nation and we reject the illusion and false promises of Progressivism, reject the “wokeness” of post-Zionism, and reject the political policies of the past year and a half that have attempted to erase Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State. Above all, voters reiterated their love of Zion, their attachment to the mission of the Jewish People in their Land, and their great enthusiasm for the ongoing narrative of the State of Israel that remains unashamed of our exceptionalism while at the same time serving as a light unto the nations of the world.
The people of Israel have shown the world that the common folk are more than capable of rising above the subliminal messaging and progressive bias of the media and influential publicists. The voters of Israel have expressed themselves boldly, independently, and unambiguously. Israel has shown in its own democratic way that other Western nations that see themselves afflicted with similar political dilemmas that have created feelings of alienation, distrust of political leaders and helplessness can and should be faithful to their own common sense and understanding of conventional wisdom.
Despite Netanyahu’s affirmation that his newly elected government will continue to share the values of an open, democratic society, including tolerance and respect for all in civil society, particularly minority groups; his longstanding priorities to maintain law and order within Israel by not compromising enforcement within the Arab Israeli community and Palestinian society is not only expected to continue, but will be at the forefront of the new government’s agenda. During the previous government’s watch, Arab-Israeli Knesset members have gotten away with hailing Palestinian terrorists who murdered IDF soldiers as heroic martyrs will no longer by tolerated. Over the past year and a half of the national unity government there has been a dramatic uptick in Israeli-Arab violence and Palestinian terror that took place in all of Israel including Judea and Samaria (West Bank).
The Israeli public witnessed a dramatic upsurge in violence; stabbings, shootings, criminal gang warfare by Israeli Arabs against other Israeli Arabs, and against Israeli Jews. In addition, Netanyahu’s uncompromising stance against Iran and his determination that the Iranian’s will not acquire nuclear weapons will continue unabated by outside pressure from the Biden administration and European leaders.
To get a close up sense of the meaning of what the elections really mean for many here in Israel, the response by a Haredi parliamentarian who spoke from his heart tells it all in a nutshell. MK Yitzhak Pindrus of the Haredi United Torah Judaism party told his progressive political opponents “we’re not animals like you” in a message apparently meant to assuage the opposing bloc. Pindrus spoke as polls and early vote counts predicted a victory for Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-religious bloc, which included Pindrus’s UTJ party. “We won’t treat you cruelly like you treated us,” Pindrus stated in a message to his political opponents. “We’re civilized people, not animals like you. In the government you stole, you treated us, you walked all over us. You thought we were just rags. We’re human beings,” he says. “We will treat you well, we won’t persecute you, we won’t harass you,” he says. “We’ll take care of our rights, but we won’t look for where we can harass you a little bit, where we can do you harm. We’re not like you. You have problems? Look in the mirror, not at us.”
In the coming days as the Prime Minister elect, Benjamin Netanyahu goes through the arduous effort of building a governing coalition, much will be said and reported to hinder his efforts. Names like Ben-Gvir and Smotrich will be paraded by the media as right-wing extremists who endanger Israel’s democracy. The losing side of Israel’s election will shriek their message that violence, hatred, and incitement is detrimental to democracy without taking any responsibility or accountably for the incitement that they themselves invoked and expressed without caring for the consequences. I like many others remain optimistic for the coming period for I have no doubt that the new government will respond with a spirit of goodwill and mutual respect, diffusing the poisonous discourse of the past year and a half.