Netanyahu is fighting for political survival to the beat of the drums of war

Netanyahu is fighting for political survival to the beat of the drums of war

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Pressure was building on Netanyahu before the attacks, and experts say a showdown is only a matter of time.

The prime minister, who has led Israel for nearly 16 of the last 27 years, is still fighting three corruption cases in court.

In the nine months to October 7, his hard-line government’s divisive judicial overhaul has been marred by mass protests, which opponents say is a threat to Israeli democracy.

Israel was “tearing itself apart” before the Hamas attacks, Hazan said.
But “there is no politics anymore because of the war”, he said.

“At some point politics will come back. Then there will be questions and then protests will come back.”

When the war is over, the government can order a commission of inquiry – either a government commission with relatively little power, or a more independent national commission.

If Netanyahu is found guilty of the attacks, his political problems could be serious.

The government has warned that the war will take several months and Netanyahu is not obliged to call elections for three years, but observers are struggling to see him lasting that long.

“Everyone knows he is damaged,” according to Hazan, who said there were “signs” that coalition members “know the game is over”.

Polls indicated that the Israelis’ preferred candidate was now centrist leader Benny Gantz, a minister without portfolio in the war cabinet who had been in opposition before the war began.

Green said, “Netanyahu’s legacy is shattered by both the divisions he sowed through judicial reform and the multiple failures that enabled the October 7 attack.”

“Many Israelis consider these two issues to be linked.”

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