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A GOOD DAY FOR ISRAEL — WITH MORE TO COME, by Conrad Black (National Post)

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Apr. 13, 2019


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s narrow victory in this week’s election, prevailing through the complicated Israeli electoral process while under preliminary criminal indictment, is a formidable achievement. Next year he is set to become the longest serving prime minister in the country’s history, over 14 years. In Israeli elections, the composition of the Knesset (parliament) is entirely by proportion of the total vote; there are no constituencies. In their zeal to ensure that all voices are heard, the founders of the State of Israel determined that any party gaining one per cent of the vote would be seated in the 120-member chamber. The result has been bulky coalitions, and the occasional grand coalition between the two major parties in which the four-year term is divided; two years as premier for each of the principal party leaders. The proverbially argumentative Israelis make self-government as difficult as possible. According to the Old Testament, God Himself described the Jews as “a stiffnecked people;” apparently, according to ancient scriptures, even the Almighty, in contemplation of His chosen people, was reduced to understatement.

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