NYT: New Netanyahu-Led Government ‘Significant Threat’ to Israel, Biden Must Rein It In

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

The New York Times on Saturday published an editorial warning that the incoming “far-right” Israeli government headed by Benjamin Netanyahu was a “significant threat to future of Israel.”

The editorial, titled “The Ideal of Democracy in a Jewish State Is in Jeopardy,” argued that while Netanyahu “clearly has the support of the Israeli electorate,” the concessions he is offering his “ultrareligious and ultranationalist” partners jeopardize the country’s democratic values.

The editorial goes on to note the Times “has been a strong supporter of Israel,” despite its long record of anti-Israel bias, from sugarcoating Palestinian terrorism, to accusing Israel of war crimes to spreading outright lies.

“Netanyahu’s government, however, is a significant threat to the future of Israel — its direction, its security and even the idea of a Jewish homeland. For one, the government’s posture could make it militarily and politically impossible for a two-state solution to ever emerge,” the piece warns.

The Times also calls on the Biden administration to “do everything it can to express its support for a society governed by equal rights and the rule of law in Israel, as it does in countries all over the world. That would be an act of friendship, consistent with the deep bond between the two nations.”

The paper warns that Netanyahu is forming a cabinet that will work on “expanding and legalizing settlements in a way that would effectively render a Palestinian state in the West Bank impossible” – even though it is the Palestinians who are far outpacing Jewish construction in Area C, the area of the West Bank where both Jewish and Palestinians live, with illegal Palestinian construction rising by 80 percent last year.

It further warns incoming ministers will change “the status quo on the Temple Mount, an action that risks provoking a new round of Arab-Israeli violence,” even though every single one of the clashes on the Temple Mount in the past year and a half have been started by Arab rioters. The Temple Mount is Judaism’s holiest site yet Jews are forbidden from praying on the site, even under their breath.

Regarding Israel’s notoriously left-wing judiciary, the Times warns that the incoming government led by Netanyahu, who is on trial for corruption for what many claim are trumped up charges, will undermine “the authority of the Israeli Supreme Court, thus freeing the Knesset, the Israeli legislature, to do whatever it wants, with little judicial restraint.”

“These moves are troubling, and America’s leaders should say so. The Biden administration’s main response so far has been a cautious speech by Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the liberal advocacy group J Street on Dec. 4, in which he declared that the United States would deal with Israeli policies, not individuals,” it read.

Israel’s Likud Party leader Benjamin Netanyahu arrives for the swearing-in ceremony of Israeli lawmakers at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in Jerusalem, Nov. 15, 2022. (Abir Sultan/Pool Photo via AP, File)

“Moderating forces in Israeli politics and civil society are already planning energetic resistance to legislation that would curtail the powers of the Israeli Supreme Court or the rights of the Arab minority or the LGBTQ community. They deserve support from the American public and from the Biden administration,” the editorial continued.

“Anything that undermines Israel’s democratic ideals — whether outright annexation of Jewish settlements or legalization of illegal settlements and outposts — would undermine the possibility of a two-state solution. America’s support for Israel reflects our two countries’ respect for democratic ideals. President Biden and Mr. Netanyahu should do everything they can to reaffirm that commitment.”


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