Writers and publications within the Beltway appear to have decided that now is the time to push Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu out of office — a goal long cherished by both the Barack Obama and Joe Biden administrations in Washington, DC.
The war in Israel is barely one month old; some of the victims of the Hamas terror attack Oct. 7 have not yet been identified; a tiny democratic nation is at war for its survival; and yet some in the establishment have decided now is the time to strike.
Foreign Affairs was first out of the gate, with three left-of-center Israeli writers writing that Netanyahu must be ousted — not because of his handling of the war, but because, in their view, a “two-state solution” must follow the war, and he cannot deliver it.
(One of the authors is a former chief of staff for former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, who was the mastermind behind many of the protests that wracked Israel and divided the Israeli people in the nine months prior to the October 7 attack.)
There may be no Israeli leader, right or left, who is willing or able to “deliver” a “two-state solution” after a terror attack in which the governing power in a neighboring Palestinian entity — and some of its civilians — murdered 1,400 people in cold blood.
Notably, the “two-state solution” does not appear to be as important to regional Arab leaders as it is to career diplomats and pundits. Saudi Arabia even appeared to drop the idea as a condition for peace, in the hopeful weeks before the Hamas attack.
Peggy Noonan of the Wall Street Journal piled on over the weekend. Though typically enamored of elder statesmen, Noonan wrote that Netanyahu had to resign because — in her view — he should not have invaded Gaza, but rather turned the other cheek.
In our view what was needed for Israel was an absorbing, a regirding. Sometimes you must wait, build up your strength, broaden your resources, reach out to friends, let opportunities present themselves—everything shifts in life; some shifts are promising. But don’t get sucked into Gaza and spend months providing the world with painful and horrifying pictures of innocent Palestinian babies being carried from the rubble. (“We told them to leave,” isn’t enough. Some people can’t leave, they’re not capable, they’re old people in an apartment somewhere.)
Noonan also cited Netanyahu’s judicial reforms, and violence by “settlers” in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) — who have, she neglected to mention, been targets of terrorism for months. She also cited the flawed “corruption” charges against Netanyahu.
Whatever Noonan’s views, Israel is not due to have elections for another three years. Netanyahu suffered in the polls after the October 7 terror attack — but he was riding high before that, and may do so again, especially if the war is concluded with victory.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.