Hubris Meets Nemesis in Israel
By ruling out any political process in Palestine and boldly asserting that “the Jewish people have an exclusive and inalienable right to all parts of the Land of Israel,” Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s fanatical government made bloodshed inevitable. But that doesn't explain Israel's failure to prevent Hamas from attacking.
TOLEDO – Sooner or later, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s destructive political magic, which has kept him in power for 15 years, was bound to usher in a major tragedy. A year ago, he formed the most radical and incompetent government in Israel’s history. Don’t worry, he assured his critics, I have “two hands firmly on the steering wheel.”
But by ruling out any political process in Palestine and boldly asserting, in his government’s binding guidelines, that “the Jewish people have an exclusive and inalienable right to all parts of the Land of Israel,” Netanyahu’s fanatical government made bloodshed inevitable.
Admittedly, blood flowed in Palestine even when peace-seekers such as Yitzhak Rabin and Ehud Barak were in office. But Netanyahu recklessly invited violence by paying his coalition partners any price for their support. He let them grab Palestinian lands, expand illegal settlements, scorn Muslim sensibilities regarding the sacred mosques on the Temple Mount, and promote suicidal delusions about the reconstruction of the biblical Temple in Jerusalem (in itself a recipe for what could be the mother of all Muslim Jihads). Meanwhile, he also sidelined the more moderate Palestinian leadership of Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank, effectively beefing up the radical Hamas in Gaza.