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Netanyahu Dissolves Israeli Parliament, Calls For New Elections In Risky Political Gambit

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Originally appeared at ZeroHedge

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has somehow retained his popularity with the Israeli electorate despite the fact that he and his wife Sarah Netanyahu (who was indicted back in June) have been implicated in several corruption and bribery scandals. If prosecutors accept the advice of Israeli police, the prime minister could face criminal charges in the new year.

But none of this has apparently deterred Netanyahu from a risky political gambit: On Monday, Netanyahu and the leaders of Israel’s coalition government formally dissolved the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) and hold early elections as soon as April in order to try and win a broader majority that will allow them to pass a controversial military conscription reform bill that has alienated some far-right members of Netanyahu’s coalition. The Knesset is expected to approve the dissolution during a Wednesday vote.

According to the Washington Post, which cited local media reports, the election will likely take place on April 9. During the vote, Netanyahu is hoping to expand his coalition’s razor-thin one-vote majority in the legislative body (various member parties control 61 of 120 votes), which would (in theory) allow him to pass a bill aimed at making it easier to draft ultra-orthodox Israeli’s into the Israeli Defense Force, which has been struggling in recent years with a shortage of man power.

Netanyahu Dissolves Israeli Parliament, Calls For New Elections In Risky Political Gambit

As it stands, all Israelis must serve at least two years in the IDF. But most ultra-othodox jews who study in the country’s Yeshivas have been exempted from this rule. The new law, if passed, would mandate service from all ultra-orthodox men except the very best scholars.

Netanyahu publicized his decision in a tweet:

Likud’s governing coalition has been struggling since the Nov. 14 resignation of Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, who stepped down over the government’s handling of demonstrations  along the border between Israeli territory and the Gaza Strip.

Making the situation worse for Likud, after Liberman’s resignation, ultranationalist Education Minister Naftali Bennett threatened to withdraw his Jewish Home party from the governing coalition if Netanyahu didn’t allow him to take over defense duties. Instead, Netanyahu said he was determined to add the defense minister post to his responsibilities (the prime minister also occupies the roles of foreign minister, immigration minister and health minister), forcing Naftali to backtrack.

But the final straw that lead to the vote appeared to be an earlier announcement from opposition leader Yair Lapid, leader of the centrist Yesh Atid party, who said his party would not support the conscription reform bill.

Drafting a law that all of Netanyahu’s coalition members would support has proven impossible, so without a stronger majority, or a popular mandate to force more support from the opposition, the bill would have little chance of passing. Centrist critics have accused Netanyahu of not going far enough with the bill and “surrendering to the orthodox”, while the orthodox oppose all efforts to extend conscription to their community.

Netanyahu remains very popular in Israel, and has vowed to stay on and fight any criminal charges that might arise. According to Reuters, recent polls show he has a good chance of winning the votes he needs to strengthen his position. But if he falters, he could face a challenge from the center as well as from his right. No one in the Likud Party has said they would challenge Netanyahu, and he’s expected to retain his position as prime minister barring a major upset.

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  • Tudor Miron

    Bibi off his meds again…

    • FlorianGeyer

      Bibi could always arrange a False Flag incident on the Lebanese or Syrian borders and declare Martial Law for a year or so I suppose :)

      • Zionism = EVIL

        That is exactly what the Zionist modus operandi is FALSE FLAGS and that is how they are manipulating the dumbed down sheeple in the so-called west by scaremongering and “terror” nonsense while they kill millions. Nutter Yahoo is a dictator as Zionism is an evil system built on sheer lies and oppression of the dispossessed Palestinians and other Arabs.

    • Rob

      Netanyahu perminantly went down for ever. There is a serious chaos buildup in Israeli terror state. For this chaos they blame each other. The corruption in Israel has also increased many folds recently due to the uncertainty of the future of Israeli terror state.

  • Assad must stay (gr8rambino)

    this pos sohuld be in jail already!!! wtf??

  • potcracker2588

    BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:10 P.M.) – The U.S. Coalition carried out a new
    airstrike in the Euphrates River Valley region of Deir Ezzor, today,
    targeting an area near the front-lines of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and
    Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

    According to a military source in Damascus, the U.S. Coalition bombed
    the Halbiyah-Zalbiyah Bridge that links the territories controlled by
    the Syrian Democratic Forces and Syrian Arab Army in western Deir Ezzor.

    The source said that the Syrian Arab Army was
    recently reconstructing this bridge and was nearly finished until it was
    bombed by the U.S. Coalition.

    The U.S. Coalition has not issued any statement about this bombing.

    Al-Masdar’s source in Damascus said that the Syrian Arab Army
    believes the reason for the bombing was to prevent them from being able
    to cross the Euphrates and enter the SDF’s territory.

    trust the jews and you will get backstabbed!!!!

  • Barba_Papa

    There’s got to be something to this guy that makes Israeli voters keep on voting for him again and again. It can’t be his disastrous foreign policy, it’s got to be the economy. In the end its always the economy, stupid. After all, that’s why Turks have kept on voting for Erdogan. Or why the British did not vote Tony Blair out of office despite the disastrous Iraq invasion. If the economy does well people will put up with amazing political shenanigans.

    Yeah, okay, he did put the Middle East ablaze, but we can now afford a 2nd car, extra mortgages and holidays, so meh, dude’s still got my vote.

  • Zionism = EVIL

    This ugly repulsive flat head war criminal is getting desperate and declared itself “PM for life” of a dead man walking Zionist shithole charity case regime illegally occupying Palestine. The Zionist child killers can see their doom.

  • Rob

    Netanyahu perminantly went down for ever. There is a serious chaos buildup in Israeli terror state. For this chaos they blame each other.

  • Lazy Gamer

    Netanyahoo will have better results if his soldiers are all lapping like dogs. lol A long time ago there was a power struggle between religion and state. It went badly for the state. Maybe Elisha can help with reinforcements?
    Seriously though, it is as if they need all the men they can get. Sounds like something important is coming up

  • verner

    the best gift to humanity netanyahu can give is to close down israel for good and disperse the population on a voluntary diaspora. maybe they, the just dispossessed israelis, will be welcome in by the crooks on capitol hill and given lebensraum somewhere in the 48 states, provided they promise not to enlarge the place they are given.