First of all - a bit of funny political fantasy from David Horovitz. Funny, I said? Oh well...
To be truthful*, I don't envy Bibi's current situation. He made two unfortunate (for him) decisions: the first about canceling the looming elections in September 2012, when his popularity was at its zenith; the second to merge with Lieberman's gang for the purpose of attracting more votes (the opposite of what really happened, which was quite easy to predict - if I succeeded, that is...).
Now he has a coalition to build - from fragmented and warring bits and pieces. And then try to hold it together for four years... oh yeah, good luck with that.
Anyway, inspired by that puny success with my prediction of Likud Beiteinu poor show in the elections, I am ready to predict Bibi's coalition-building moves. Not to the level of naming the eventual partners, but the puzzle is really limited to a few elements, so let's instead concentrate on generics.
Bibi has two straightforward options:
1. To go directly where his Likudnik's heart is: to invite all the right wing parties, possibly with a light addition of non-ideological fractions like that of Shaul Mofaz (two seats), to beef up the numbers. The coalition will steadfastly refuse to negotiate with Ramallah, Bibi will be a permanent pain in the neck for the White House and EU, but at least this way he will keep the ideals and the credo untouched. This coalition will fall for reasons not necessarily having to do with international politics, rather because of the blackmail from the haredi and other fractions for money from the limited public trough.
2. Do a Sharon: turn to the left, at least where the negotiations with Palestinians are concerned, strike a bargain with a few left wing fractions and go directly to negotiating table. This may make him a darling of the international opinion, for a short while, before the negotiations fail as usual and for the usual reasons. But at least Bibi will be able to show to the anti-Israeli crowd that we have done our best - not that it will mean a thing to that crowd in the long run. This coalition will fall for reasons not necessarily having to do with international politics, rather because of the blackmail from other fractions for money from the limited public trough.
But forget the options 1 and 2. This is not the Bibi's way. The way his paranoid and vacillating brain works, Bibi will strive to create a coalition that could maximize his maneuverability and allow him to zig left or to zag right depending on the pressures applied. And to have a ready excuse when put to scrutiny in the White House: you see, the way the coalition works, I can't go there or move here... And to sic one coalition partner at the other, himself playing an objective and impersonal arbiter.
So Bibi will invite partners both from the right and the left, create a fiction of a common platform and play one side against the other, hoping to keep the unsteady equilibrium for as long as possible.
What will in fact happen is another catatonic coalition, unable to come to a decision, to stick to it and to carry it out, with another inflated government of 25 or more ministers of this and that. And this coalition will fall for reasons not necessarily having to do with international politics, rather because of the blackmail from the haredi and other fractions for money from the limited public trough.
But we shall see in a week or two. Just remember where you've read this, OK?
One thing for sure: toward the planned Obama's visit, Bibi will have all the ducks in a row, prepared to deflect anything addressed at him.
(*) A sure sign, at least in Israel, that a man is going to start lying in your face.
Update: Now, this is what I would call a shining example of wishful thinking:
Moreover, joining with Lapid, a perceived moderate and the darling of the elite and liberal media who advocates social conscience issues, will help change the perceived extremist rightist Netanyahu government's international image into that of a moderate centrist government and could ease tensions with the Obama administration, the Europeans, and the leftist media.Who is being kidded?