June 14, 2021
I usually don’t spend too much time on political developments in other nations because Americans aren’t that interested. But the replacement of Benjamin Netanyahu after 12 years as Prime Minister of Israel is not an Israeli news item, it’s a story that affects the entire world.
After a 60-59 vote in the Parliament, Netanyahu was replaced by Naftali Bennett, who is backed by a fractious coalition ranging from Israel hawks to Islamic Arabs. The major concern with a coalition that covers the entire spectrum of left to right is whether there can be consensus without capitulation on critical issues such as sovereignty in Judea and Samaria and building on the Abraham Accords.
Netanyahu has been the focus of Israel haters worldwide because there has never been so tough, eloquent or resolute a defender of Israel’s right to exist and to defend itself from those who aim to eradicate it. The elites who are always pushing Israel to compromise more never explain how you can compromise with people who want to kill every Jew. By letting them kill half the Jews?
In a strong outgoing speech, Netanyahu said that Iran is "celebrating" his loss because "they understand that starting today, there will be a weak and unstable government that will align with the dictates of the international community." He also revealed that he had privately warned President Biden that his attempts to reinstate the Obama Iran nuke deal would pave the way “for Iran to have an arsenal of nuclear weapons with international legitimacy." He even compared Biden’s blindness to the consequences to FDR’s tragic failure to bomb the train tracks leading to Auschwitz when he had a chance in 1944.
He also predicted that he will soon be back. I hope it’s not under similar circumstances to Winston Churchill’s replacement of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain after a period when he was out of government. He came back because Britain’s leaders tried to appease the Nazis and ended up needing a tough, resolute leader to win World War II.
Benjamin Netanyahu has been a personal friend of mine for many years, and I’m not sure the people of Israel fully appreciate his statecraft that has led to unprecedented peace, prosperity, and security not just for Israel, but for the entire Middle East. It will take years for the new leadership to develop the depth of relationships that Netanyahu had fostered over his 12 consecutive years and 15 total.
Having said that, Israel is where it is because of God, not any one man or political party. I’ve also known Naftali Bennett for over 10 years and have high hopes that he will use his very significant executive skills to keep Israel stable and secure. I hope all my Christian friends will join me as we “pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”