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Monday, February 09, 2009

Western Standard poll: Which party would you vote for in the Israeli election?

RealClearWorld predicts that the Israeli legislative election, beginning in just hours, will be the most influential election of 2009:

Given its tumultuous history, it may be a cliché to dub an Israeli election “momentous.” But if any qualifies, surely the returns from Tuesday’s elections must. In the balance hang the future of a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians and the possibility of military action against Iran.

[...]Early indications point to a rightward swing in the electorate. Former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party are projected to secure 26 of the Knesset’s 120 seats, followed by Tzipi Livni’s Kadima party with 23 seats. Among the surprises is the performance of Israel Beiteinu ("Our Home"), an ultra-nationalist party, which may win 18 seats and, by extension, help Netanyahu forge a right-wing coalition. Ehud Barak’s Labor party is currently expected to snag 15 seats. Yet there is also a sizeable pool of undecided voters, who could tip the balance.

Already groaning under the weight of the Gaza war, some wonder if Netanyahu’s return shovels dirt over any potential for peace. Others suggest that Netanyahu is the only politician willing to face down Iran. Whatever the outcome, the vote will almost certainly impact U.S. policy towards Iran. In the summer, prime minister Ehud Olmert petitioned the Bush administration to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities. As the centrifuges continue to whirl, the next prime minister may very well need to make a fateful call: to launch a military attack against the Islamic Republic, or trust in deterrence. With military forces in two countries neighboring Iran, the U.S. will be deeply impacted by whichever decision Israel’s elected leadership makes.

(h/t Jesse Walker)

Participate in our reader poll about the Israeli election after the break:

Posted by Kalim Kassam on February 9, 2009 in International Affairs | Permalink


I would probably vote for Likud because of Netanyahu. Although, I also like some of the policies from NRP and Our Home Party. The important thing is to kick out Kadima.

Posted by: David | 2009-02-09 10:44:33 AM

What Canadians think does not matter. This is an Israeli election. Why do Canadians obsess over the elections of other countries but grumble when asked to participate in one of their own?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-09 11:32:18 AM

While it is true that what common Canadians think of this elections is unimportant, I have to admitt I would be interested to know which of those parties are counting on foreign economic assistance and aid to go on with their agenda.

Posted by: Marc | 2009-02-09 2:08:23 PM

Perhaps, Marc, but whichever party receives whatever aid, you may rest assured that none or nearly none of it will be coming from Canada.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-09 2:50:52 PM

Likud hands down. For one, the liberal a-holes in Kadima forced legal residents from their homes to hand over Israeli land to terrorists. Smooth move geniuses - one wonders if Kadima has a Warsaw Ghetto complex. Time for Israel to tell the world to take their opinions and shove them where the sun don't shine and secure its territorial integrity.

Posted by: Faramir | 2009-02-09 3:27:22 PM

Where is the spot to vote for the Holocaust Survivors & Green Leaf Party? That's the ticket!

Posted by: Marc Scott Emery | 2009-02-09 6:54:37 PM


For this audience, I should have known to put that coalition as an option. you'll just have to vote "other".

My guess is that a couple of the votes for "The Greens" were actually intended for the "Green Leaf"s.

For my part, I wasn't sure who to vote. I ended up going with Meretz. The way I see it, the stronger their voice in the Knesset, the sooner we see an end to settlement expansion, and the less distant the possibility of a peaceful two-state solution seems. Hadash got ruled out because they're straight-up Commies, and the Arab parties were out because they're never allowed into ruling coalitions or granted any power or influence.

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2009-02-09 7:03:44 PM

Likud is the only acceptable one if one is concerned about Israel's national security and ending the socialist hold on the economy. What is still sad is that Israel does have representative democracy, which means voting does not grant you a local political representative of any party. Granted that it is an improvement over the neighbouring countries, but it is not a true democracy.

Posted by: Alain | 2009-02-09 7:30:34 PM

Definitely the National Union;

"Dr. Michael Ben-Ari, No. 4 on rightist party's Knesset list, offers to expel Israel's Arabs to countries such as Venezuela and Turkey, seeks to banish 'leftists' from High Court, and believes in rebuilding Temple in Jerusalem

Ben-Ari explained that his plan was to open a "humanitarian corridor" for Arabs to places like Turkey or Venezuela, and raise money worldwide that would go towards providing them with an "acclimatization grant" in their new countries.

Are you referring to the entire Arab population in Israel ?

"I suppose not all of them are enemies. The Druze, for instance, are highly loyal and aren't hostile. But the Arabs in Umm al-Fahm who dance on the rooftops when Jews are being slaughtered? What I'm suggesting isn't cruelty or racism, but survivability. It's either us or them. If we're nice to them and keep dreaming of coexistence – they will fight us."

He added that "the Supreme Court will be made up of sensible jurists whose worldview falls in line with those of the people of Israel… the judges in Israel will act in favor of the Jews and the IDF soldiers, whose lives are more valuable than those of others."

Posted by: DJ | 2009-02-09 8:44:21 PM

Netanyahu is the best choice by far. A smart man who will be the best for the job!

Posted by: Markalta | 2009-02-09 9:46:52 PM

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