February 12th, 2009
10:00 AM ET

How Israel's anger issues hurt us all

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/meast/02/11/israel.elections.polls/art.netanyahu.gi.jpg caption="Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu and wife Sara vote in Jerusalem on Tuesday."]

Joe Klein

One by one, in reverse order, the leaders of Israel's top three political parties appeared on television the night of the Feb. 10 elections and declared victory. This was clever, since none of them had really won. Avigdor Lieberman, whose extreme anti-Arab Yisrael Beitenu party finished third, went on first.

His party had surged in the final weeks and would now, he boasted, be "the key" to forming a majority coalition in the 120-seat Knesset. Maybe. Benjamin Netanyahu, whose Likud party finished second, appeared next. He had won, he said, because Likud was the leading right-wing party and conservatives of various stripes had gained a majority of seats in the Knesset.

But Netanyahu had been expecting a big victory; his support had plummeted in the last days. Finally, there was Tzipi Livni, whose moderate Kadima party won one more seat than Likud ... but didn't really win either, because Netanyahu was right: he would probably have an easier path to building a parliamentary majority than Livni would.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Global 360° • Israel
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Melissa

    Israel's whining like children only affects Israel unless you decide to get involved in someone elses problems. Lets keep your religion a proper private matter.

    February 12, 2009 at 12:21 pm |
  2. Gene Penszynski from Vermont

    Sorry S Callahan from New York ... but 'God's Plans' as envsioned by Jesus Christ don't promote human torture and GREED and Racism and hating your fellow man simply because his/her beliefs might be different. I find it hard to believe that 'God's Plans' promote what IDIOTS like G W Bush and Conservative Isreali leaders have promoted. Promoting denying food and medical treatment to those in need, branding those who believe differently from Fudamentlaist Christian and Jews as 'Devil Worshippers' is NOT 'God's Plan' OR God's Will and those that practice this I am sure will find their places in their own HELLS of their OWN making.

    February 12, 2009 at 12:07 pm |
  3. Nathaniel B.D., Indianapolis, IN USA

    In response to other comments: God doesn't intervene in politics whether Israel is involved or not, and I'm sure both sides are claiming God's favor anyway. Whether you agree or disagree probably depends on your political or religious affiliation.

    Israel needs a leader who will take actions in the best interest of 1. the Israeli people, 2. Its Jewish tradition, 3. the peace with other nations.

    Livni and Natanyahu both have the ability to bring peace with its neighbors if they agree to similar peace terms developed with Pres. Carter in the Camp David Accords, and then actually honor the terms of their agreement. If they give Palestinians the land agreed to from the 1948 borders "Palestine" and its people will be satisfied. Animosity between the two nations will still exist BUT the violence will decrease tenfold. Even the anti-Israel nations surrounding Israel have stated they would recognize Israel if it honored this agreement. Both Livni and Natanyahu have the ability to do this without risking harm to Israel itself as a nation.

    Avigdor Lieberman on the other hand would lead to the destruction and end of Israel. An extreme Zionist and self proclaimed racist against all non-Israeli's not just Arabs. His views would lead to constant military offense. A government under his regime would eventually lead to the end of America's support for Israel. At some point America's support of Israel under his regime would exhaust fiscal support and bring more terrorist attacks on American soil. America would eventually wash it's hands of Israel with the thought that supporting Israel brings more con's than pro's.

    February 12, 2009 at 12:03 pm |
  4. sean brizendine

    there are few things in this world more frustrating than the situation in israel, the palestinians should of took the deal in 2000 at camp david because now everyone is paying the price.
    "sean in santa rosa"

    February 12, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  5. earle,florida

    Absolutely riveting article ,Mr. Klein. It seems so easy to equate todays circumstances to past Jeruselem. I put my trifocals on ,and all became crystal clear.Time,nor human nature has not changed in two thousand years! Josephus suggested that King Herod's pawns,the Pharisees,Saddusees, were subjects to the Israelites under his rule;but no matter ,the King broke more than bread with Pontius Pilate!

    February 12, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  6. Joanne, Solvay, NY

    As America supports Israel, individually, so should we all; however, let them determine their political fate, support their rights and give them sustenance if they need it; but also, let them solve their own problems and deal with their own form of anger management.

    February 12, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  7. Josh Guttman

    "Israel's anger issues"? that's an attention-grabbing headline if I ever saw one. and also a bit offensive i think. you'd be angry too if your neighbor kept firing rockets into your house.

    February 12, 2009 at 11:05 am |
  8. S Callahan New York

    People tend to ignore the political matters of Israel are God's matters...and knowing the scriptures as I do..I suspect God will make sure Benjamin is the next leader. In the near future not only dealing with the arms issue be a focus but so will the building of the Third Temple. Benjamin will be instrumental to this and God's plans.

    February 12, 2009 at 10:38 am |