Israel today is a house divided –  the message from the street, “Buckle Up”

By David E. Kaplan

It’s beginning to feel at least atmospherically – if not territorially – that Israel has finally adopted the elusive “Two-State Solution”, but Palestinians are totally out the picture. It’s the Jewish population that has opted to separate – not from Palestinians but from each other!

The clearly misguided, shamefully bigoted, and much theocratic ‘coalition of the crazies’ conjured up by star political alchemist Benjamin Netanyahu has done what no Arab enemy state or feared Palestinian terrorism group has ever achieved; it has cracked our Golden Egg – Jewish unity. Not only has it divided Jew from Jew within Israel; it has divided the House of Israel – the Jewish state from the Jewish diaspora.

What an achievement?

United in their Opposition. The once  ‘King Bibi” has achieved the impossible – uniting the country against him as reflected in protests attracting bedfellows from all sides of the political spectrum. (Photo: Getty Images)

Does Netanyahu remember or even care that  following his election victory in November 2022 he promised:

 “to be a prime minister for everyone – for those who voted for me, and for those who did not vote for me.”

Speaking then like a true democrat, Netanyahu has done everything since to undermine Israeli democracy, while all the time professing to strengthen it.

Is he ever again to be believed or trusted?

The jury is no longer out on that one. The protestors  are not waiting for the prosecutors; they are coming out in ever-increasing numbers onto the streets given their unanimous decision. They are joined from the top by Israel’s State President, Isaac Herzog, former colleagues of Netanyahu in his Likud Party, notable Israelis in commerce and banking, former top military personnel, former Prime Ministers, celebrated scientists and Nobel Laureates, top reserve Israeli fighter pilots and even the veterans of the elite commando squad that rescued hostages in Entebbe in 1976 who published a letter slamming Netanyahu for:

 “sacrificing the State of Israel and the people of Israel for your own interests.”

Appeal from the President. Warning of looming ‘societal collapse,’ an anxious Israeli State President, Isaac Herzog, lays out a plan of compromise on legal overhaul.

These heroes noted that while serving under the Prime Minister’s brother, Yoni Netanyahu in the daring raid on Entebbe “who consciously and with open eyes sacrificed himself for the State of Israel and the people of Israel……. you, Bibi, are consciously and with open eyes sacrificing the State of Israel and the people of Israel for your own interests.”

What an indictment.

From Prime Minister to Crime Minister.  Perceived now as a criminal in high office, Netanyahu’s grip of support amongst the people is shrinking.

These are not what Bibi and his cohorts label, “anarchists” or “Leftists”. These are the salt of the earth Israelis, many of them from his own political party and who voted for him in the past  who are bellowing at the tops of their voices, from city squares and major crossroads across the country and who echo the thrust of The Jerusalem Post March 14’s editorial that appeals to the government to listen to the State President and:


Netanyahu can stop this “madness”; it may cost him but failing to do so, will cost this country far more. So far, however, he appears impervious to righteousness or reason, and much like the warhorse on a medieval battlefield, gallops headlong into the history books, leaving in his ravaged wake, shameful chapters that future generations will have to erase.

As one friend said to me this morning in reference to the multiple criminal cases against him:

 “If Bibi’s guilt in the past was in doubt – no more!”

Raising her voice, she bellowed over the phone:


Streets of Tel Aviv. They say that Tel Aviv is “a city that never sleeps”. It’s now a city that never lets the government sleep either!(Gili Yaari/Flash90)

That is the increasing thinking of many. We don’t know this man anymore or the people he represents. They are not us; we are not them.

Who are we?

We are as we stand today – a country divided.

And while our precious Israel burns, the Prime Minister runs off  – or is it runs away – first to Italy than to Germany. Hardly anyone knows or even cares why he is flying or fleeing so frequently to Europe. The news media is hardly covering beyond saying “to discuss various international affairs,”code parlance for Iran,while it is the ‘affairs’ at home that lies in shambles. Yes Iran is the enemy, but right now the most immediate existential danger lies within. To face off our enemies we need to be united and that we are not; far from it as nearly every component of Israeli society and the Jewish world is warning Bibi – you are going down a very dangerous road that undermines the very existence of the State of Israel.

Barring Bibi. Israeli protesters against the Israeli government’s planned judicial overhaul try bar Prime Minister Netanyahu from boarding his plane at Ben Gurion Airport on March 9, 2023. (photo credit: ERIK MARMOR/FLASH9)

It would be naïve if we don’t see we have hard days ahead as a country.

One would think with ALL the rabbis in the ruling coalition, there would be some prevailing wisdom of lessons learnt from our Torah to avoid another cataclysmic clash amongst our people. Why did our ancient kingdoms in Jerusalem ever endure? We can understand seeing how our leaders today are behaving; no compromise; no listening to the counsel of our State President, just barreling ahead blaring their mantra “The people want it?”, “The people voted for it” and “It will not weaken but strengthen democracy?”

Flying or Fleeing? No adoring fans, PM Benjamin Netanyahu faces the media ahead of his departure to Germany on March 15, 2023 (Haim Zach/GPO)

Not too many are buying. The government’s vocabulary today is but the sour substance of soliloquy not conversation and is being drowned out by Israel’s ‘winds of change’ as the market place of ideas has shifted from the nation’s shuks (markets) to its streets as protestors take to the soles of their feet for the soul of the nation.

I am proudly one of them.

While the mission of Lay of the Land (LotL) is to provide a wide and diverse perspective of affairs in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world, the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by its various writers are not necessarily ones of the owners and management of LOTL but of the writers themselves.  LotL endeavours to the best of its ability to credit the use of all known photographs to the photographer and/or owner of such photographs (0&EO).

6 thoughts on “TWO-STATE SITUATION!

  1. A Rabbi once said that there is no such thing a coincidence. Therefore, it’s not coincidental that in today’s edition of LoL there are two articles so far apart but with much in common when it comes to government and leadership.
    Israel is in the throes of a critical leadership crisis so aptly described last week and today by David’s assessment of the situation under its caustic and destructive government.
    South Africa as Ostern Tefo, describes, is tottering on being a failed state due to its inept and pathetic leadership.
    So much in common – appaling leadership …the ‘p’ should be replaced by ‘t’ in that last word. An apt description of both!
    Neither will listen and both drunk with power
    Many say Israel should have had a constitution which would have prevented this meltdown…Well S. Africa with an outstanding constitution has not prevented its descent into the abyss

  2. The subheading after your excellent opening, is ‘STOP THE MADNESS’ .
    Greed for power, wealth and control can certainly increase to a state of madness – the same components now seen in megalomaniacs like Vladimir Putin and in S.Africa, like Julius Malema. –
    It is also well summed up by Allan Wolman: ‘drunk with power’.

  3. This must be one of the most intellectually challenged articles written on this subject, EVER. Quite obviously written by someone who does not live in Israel and has been blind to what has been happening in Israel for the past few years.
    Lapid started with the anti-Bibi process and he created a coalition which was called by the vast majority of Israelis, the Coalition of Hate (not change) because it was simply a coalition of parities that hate Bibi. Lapid was the one who coined the phrase “us and them”. If you had changed the article to Lapid, it would be more accurate.

    As for what is going on now, it has nothing to with reform as over 80% of the country know that it is needed. This is pure and simply because the country voted the left out. It is not 64 against 56 but more 64 against 40 as the Arab Parties are not leftist. These uprisings are funded by anti-Israeli American organizations, partly through Ehud Barak, and the American Embassy. It is foreign meddling in our affairs.

    Here we have a legally elected government (elected by the people) who make laws by a majority and 12 people who only elect their own cronies and do not represent the people, decide that they can reject the law. Why, because of their own agenda. Two cases in point: Ahmed Tibi as a person, breaks Knesset Law 7a, but the Supreme Court rejects all claims against that because of their agenda. Deri was rejected recently, his agreement last year said nothing about not running again and it was accepted.

    As for the president, he doesn’t represent the nation seeing as how the nation didn’t elect him. His proposition would have turned Israel into a true dictatorship unlike it in history whereas the Supreme Court is at the top, then the legal advisor to the Knesset, then the military and only then the people’s elected body!! Only an idiot or someone with interests would think this is good! By doing this the president showed that he doesn’t have the country’s interests at heart.

    Before ending, did you ever wonder why all the ex-military leaders (of this century) and pilots and generals are all against judicial reform and are refusals? Do you know what their common denominator is? The American Vexler Fund!!! The same fund that is funding Ehud Barak! The same fund that funded the March on Balfour.

    Your article was a total embarrassment, and I am sure that the only people who say it is a good one are those that are called Lapidiots!

    1. This comment must be the most intellectually challenged ever! It brings to mind this wonderful quote of Einstein that I recently heard:
      “The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.”

      1. An answer by a true Lapidiot who doesn’t like hearing facts. In your case facts are nice but irrelevant. The Einstein quote refers to you! Thank you for reminding me of it.

      2. Sir, your faith and understanding of politicians clearly surpasses your understanding of the reality of this world we live in

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