With the semi-resignation of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Likud leader Bibi Netanyahu is calling for early elections. Netanyahu has the early lead in the polls and with an increasing threat from Iran, it may be his time to lead once again. I’ve always been a fan of Netanyahu, who was one of the people who recognized the threat of terrorism to the world well before 9/11. I also noted how unpopular he was with the American media and their commanders in the Democrat Party because he wouldn’t suck up to Arafat. Bill Clinton worked behind the scenes to have him removed from office when he was Prime Minister in the mid-90s and we all know how well Ehud Barak fared in the quest for “peace.”
The former Israeli Prime Minister who bent over backwards to try and gain peace with the Syrians and the PLO, (only to be played the fool) staged a bit of a comeback today as he won the Labor Party leadership post replacing the incompetent Amir Peretz. It seems all but certain Barak will also take over for Peretz as Defence Minister and once again face Bibi Netanyahu in the next election for Prime Minister. Barak was billed as “the only politician that can defeat Netanyahu” who is extremely popular right now. He did it once before in 1999, but after many failures was trounced by Ariel Sharon two years later.
Never a dull moment in Israeli politics. What I’m going to be watching for is whether Barak, when he becomes Defense Minister, makes some rather hawkish moves militarily in order to quell Bibi’s popularity. Stay tuned.