The Difficult Times of Netanyahu

Parisa Pasandepour
8 Min Read
The Difficult Times of Netanyahu

Netanyahu’s Difficult Times

Netanyahu and the Danger of Falling

Netanyahu’s difficult times this week did not start well for Benjamin Netanyahu, but luck was on his side and his government managed to maintain confidence in the Knesset, defeating the motion of no confidence against the Prime Minister. This week, the Israeli army suffered its deadliest attack since the beginning of the conflict with Hamas, and it is believed that there is no two-month ceasefire agreement. The Israeli government, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, has prevailed amidst protests against the motion of no confidence in the parliament, but political problems are increasing both domestically and internationally.

The hostage crisis and extensive damages within the Israeli army have shaken public consensus on the executive power to the extent that half of Israelis currently agree with the cessation of hostilities based on the proposed roadmap by the United States, which focuses on normalizing relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Thanks to the crisis in the Red Sea, where the Houthis continue their attacks on passing ships, rumors from Washington suggest that the Biden administration’s patience towards Tel Aviv’s actions may be coming to an end.

However, a few hours after the vote, the family members of the hostages stormed the meeting of the parliamentary financial committee to demand that the government take further actions to bring back their loved ones. However, dissatisfaction with the right-wing faction, even within the Likud party itself, is increasing.

Avigdor Lieberman, the leader of the far-right nationalist party in Israel, was among those who did not vote for the vote of no confidence, but he emphasized that Netanyahu should step down as soon as possible. In addition, some Likud party sources openly state in an interview with the Jerusalem Post that Netanyahu’s days as the head of the party and therefore possibly as the head of the country are now numbered.

Making Peace in America

In fact, from the ongoing war that has now turned from a national level to a regional level, it is believed that the perspective of Israelis is also changing and shifting. A small majority of them support the American plan, which includes freeing all remaining hostages, normalizing relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia, and irreversible steps by Israel to create a demilitarized Palestinian state.

According to a survey published by Times of Israel, it is inferred that 513% of respondents say they support such an agreement, while 289% say they oppose it, and 198% do not express their opinion. In this regard, Netanyahu has explicitly rejected a previous proposal that was raised earlier this month by Antony Blinken, the US Secretary of State.

In that proposal, Israel was asked to allow Saudi Arabia, along with four other Arab countries, to participate in the reconstruction of Gaza after the war. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Netanyahu stated that he is opposed to the creation of a Palestinian state after the conflict, and it is evident that Israel and the United States have different perspectives on this issue.

Time is running out.

It seems that the Prime Minister of Israel is aware that the current situation cannot continue indefinitely. With the approaching 2024 elections in the United States, it appears that the Biden administration intends to intensify efforts to end the crisis in the Middle East before the ballot boxes open.

Meanwhile, last Saturday, the President of the United States, for the first time in a month, had a telephone conversation with Netanyahu, as their previous phone call had abruptly ended with anger. It is also worth mentioning that the burden of war and its exorbitant costs heavily weigh on the public opinion in the United States.

Furthermore, on Tuesday, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) suffered the deadliest attack since the start of the invasion of Gaza, during which 21 soldiers lost their lives in the Kessoufim settlement in southern Israel. The operations are currently focused in Khan Yunis, where the Israeli army believes several Hamas leaders are hiding, and the number of Palestinian casualties is worsening by the hour.

This is happening while the Palestinian movement Hamas rejected Israel’s two-month ceasefire proposal, which, according to rumors, demanded the release of Israeli hostages in exchange for the release of imprisoned Palestinians in Israel. Hamas rejects the idea of negotiating the release of hostages without a complete and immediate withdrawal of Israel from the Gaza Strip.

And finally, it can be said that the actions and behaviors of both parties are reminiscent of a verse from the poems of Hafez Shirazi, which I don’t perceive any scent of goodness from these circumstances.


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Master's Degree in International Relations from the Faculty of Diplomatic Sciences and International Relations, Genoa, Italy.