Israeli gov’t not likely to be as inflexible as expected

Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Chad Groening (

A U.S.-born Israeli author and former politician believes that today's elections in Israel won't result in the hardline government many pundits are predicting.

On the eve of the election, polls indicated that Israel's government was prepared to move farther to the right, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's new Likud-Beitenu Party winning the most seats. While some analysts believe the new Israeli government will be "hardline" in its foreign policy, at least one former politician disagrees.

David Rubin is the former mayor of the Israeli town of Shiloh and author of The Islamic Tsunami: Israel and America in the Age of Obama.

Rubin, David"You have to remember that Netanyahu is not right wing -- he is centrist or perhaps slightly right of center," explains the author. "He has called for a Palestinian state, even though there has never existed such a thing in world history, and I think that he's making a big mistake if he does that."

And Rubin does not believe the corruption scandal involving former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman will have any effect on Tuesday's vote.

"I think it was a factor in the beginning because Lieberman is obviously a central figure in the Likud Beitenu Party," he comments. "But Lieberman's corruption trial will not be held until after the elections, which means that his party is in the running and he will remain most likely a member of the Knesset, but he will not be a minister in the government."

Rubin says the only question is what kind of coalition will ultimately emerge from the elections to form a government.

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved.
Advice for Rick Perry re: refunding excess tax money

An economist sees an issue in Texas Governor Rick Perry's push to refund tax money it collects but does not spend.