Prime Minister Netanyahu is ‘going for broke.’ On the brink of losing the upcoming election on March 23, Netanyahu is throwing caution to the winds. In a bold step, Netanyahu opened the economy and sent kids back to their classrooms while declaring on Fox News, “COVID is behind us!”Really!
However, the statistics show the battle is still being waged, with over 5,000 Israelis dead and others on the danger list. At the same time, over 5 million Israelis have been vaccinated twice (although it is still not clear if they themselves may pass on the virus to those not vaccinated). But apparently, Bibi believes (and maybe justifiably), he has no choice but to take the biggest gamble of his unprecedented career – 12 consecutive years as PM and mopping up the opposition every time.
But now, with Israelis set to vote, Netanyahu may still be leading the pack but with only measly 29-or-so seats in the 120-member Knesset. To make matters worse, Bibi can only count on 20-or-so ultra-Orthodox and far-Right MKs. Bibi is so desperate, he has even appealed to Arab Israeli voters, but they are on the warpath charging the Netanyahu administration has not cracked down hard enough on Israeli Arab criminals who extort their community.
Ganging up on Bibi …
In the political arena, Bibi’s opponents, Yair Lapid, Gideon Saar, Naftali Bennett, and Avigdor Lieberman, are attacking Netanyahu, ‘hammer and tongs.’ They pose the threat of forming a ragtag majority that will force Netanyahu out of power. Just how they will do this remains to be seen. And who will become the new Prime Minister if they fail to agree on a scheme for power-sharing? The country could even be faced with the nightmare of yet another election!
However, where there is a will (and there is, to oust Netanyahu), there should be a way. There’s also a wildcard that the pollsters admit they cannot nail down. Many voters are disgruntled and shellshocked by this year of COVID-19 and the PM’s current trial. We are in uncharted political territory, and many voters will not make up their minds until they face the ballot box on election day and are forced to make a decision. How am I able to say this? Simply because I am one of them, and this is the case with many other Israelis.
Grandson of German U-boat commander now serving in the Israeli navy
It is fair to say this is one of the most amazing IDF stories ever! IDF Lt. Benjamin (Benny) Gerloff, the grandson of a German U-boat captain during WWII, will now become a commander of an Israel Navy patrol vessel. His parents are German Christians who immigrated to Israeli 25 years ago. Although his grandfather was a U-boat commander, he was never a Nazi but was obligated to serve in the German armed forces during WWII. Moreover, his great grandfather was a priest and opposed the Nazis. Gerloff’s congregation worships like the Jews on Friday, and he also prays and reads the Bible in Hebrew.
Lt. Gerloff has now been promoted to a “shift officer” on the bridge of a new Saar Patrol Vessel in the near future. In Benny’s words,
“In our eyes, the people of Israel and the Land of Israel are part of God’s plan, and that is why I serve in the IDF, and it is important for me to defend the country!”
What can we say? Only salute him and respond with, ‘Aye aye, Captain!’