‘You’ll be left on your own’: The unmasking of Netanyahu’s politics – Haaretz

Posted By on February 23, 2022

The Calcalist business daily's report on police use of NSO spyware apparently only has negligible impact on former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's corruption trial. Netanyahu knows this, though he called for a state commission of inquiry on the issue anyway, and asked his supporters to fill Tel Aviv's Habima Square to underscore his demand.

What happened on the evening of the protest was nothing less than a sociological turning point. That morning, Netanyahu responded with humility to a letter that Supreme Court President Esther Hayut sent to Netanyahus Likud party colleague David Amsalem, as would be expected of a man from an established Ashkenazi family, a man who had always respected the judicial system and submitted to its authority until the criminal investigation was opened.

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The assumption that he used Amsalem and then threw him under the bus after Amsalem lambasted the court, presumably at Netanyahus bidding, again shows how flawed and inadequate the reading of the Israeli reality is when it comes to status and social standing particularly by the left wing. Thats apparent from the reaction of Netanyahus supporters, who flooded social media with statements that they would stay away from the demonstration until Netanyahu backtracks on his decision to disassociate himself from Amsalem and his flattery of Hayut. Amsalem had taken the court to task claiming bias against Mizrahim.

Surprised? The public discourse over the courts racism is important to this segment of the public. The conflict between Amsalem and Hayut in which Netanyahu naturally falls on the side to which he belongs socially, economically, ethnically and culturally reveals the bare bones of the story.

Let me tell you, someone with a Twitter profile picture of pro-Netanyahu commentator Jacob Bardugo tweeted, addressing Netanyahu. Next time that you contradict Dudi Amsalem, you lose 200 voters. I guarantee it. Your next tweet against our Mizrahi cell in Likud and you will be left on your own and that also includes your nonsense over your fabricated [criminal] cases.

Do you feel the earthquake? Because at my house, the windowpanes are rattling, the books are falling from the shelves and the light fixture is swaying back and forth. The Twitter account holder publicly stated that the conspiracy to fabricate the cases against Netanyahu was nonsense, that his supporters dont believe him, but they have stuck with him because he suits their purposes in their war against the social elites and their dazzling whiteness.

This isnt an isolated anecdote. There have been similar tweets on a daily basis. And if one can judge from the turnout at Habima Square, a considerable number of people made good on their word to stay away.

Amsalem did his job. He attacked the court as part of a broader effort in which he throws Netanyahu crumbs by undermining public trust in government institutions, but Amsalem wants dialogue with Hayut not the Esther Hayut of the immigrant transit camp of her childhood, but with Hayut the Supreme Court president. He wants a serious conversation about ethnic identity and oppression and discrimination.

Netanyahus attitude toward the judicial system is related to his legal situation. Its possible that hes attempting to maintain good relations with Hayut because hes pursuing a plea bargain, but deep down, he really believes in the judicial system.

On the other hand, in the Likud Mizrahi cell, they think the claims regarding fabricated criminal cases and a government run by civil servants is rubbish, but theyre prepared to go along with Netanyahu as long as he understands whos the man (Amsalem). Those making fun of the new Mizrahi middle class that supports the millionaire former prime minister from Caesarea can see that this support comes with considerable limitations.

Amsalems attacks are wild, crude and damaging, but they keep the discourse on structural anti-Mizrahi bias alive. A nervous Netanyahu attempted to appease the crowd by tweeting that the under-representation ofMizrahi communitiesis a real and painful problem in Israel.But the rift has already been exposed.

Read more from the original source:

'You'll be left on your own': The unmasking of Netanyahu's politics - Haaretz

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