Now is a good time to talk, in-depth, about Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israeli police yesterday recommended that he be indicted on corruption charges stemming from two recent incidents.
The first was a blatant cash-for-policy exchange with Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan. Milchan handed over nearly a quarter million dollars in order to obtain a U.S. visa and a tax exemption law for the millions he made off of movies such as Fight Club and Gone Girl.
The second charge stemmed from Bibi intimidating a newspaper for more favorable coverage and siccing them against a competitor who was critical of the Israeli Prime Minister.
Serious as these charges are, they’re secondary to the other crimes that he has committed: the blatant obstruction of the peace process and the repression of freedoms in the region. These actions help to maintain a tense, violent and demeaning status quo.
Many Orthodox Jews believe that they have a biblical entitlement to the “holy land” and have been moving into settlements to force this belief into fact. Many evangelicals believe that if you put enough Jews in the holy land, it will trigger the biblical apocalypse or rapture and the earth will be destroyed so that the “true believers” can be taken up to heaven to be with Jesus.
I’m not alone in finding this belief evil. Beyond the core notion that a group of people is entitled to commit celestial genocide, the practice of this has lots of real world hurt for the people of Palestine.
Don’t get me wrong, there are lots of issues I have with the Palestinian Authority and I whole heartedly condemn Hamas and their terror tactics. But the Palestinian people are suffering because of these policies. Unemployment is high and poverty is rampant.
These issues are not being addressed because the side in this fight that has money and power, and the backing of people with money and power, thinks that everything is fine the way it is. This is decidedly not true and any media outlet that tries to convey this situation for what it really is will be attacked by Bibi.
Netanyahu’s stake in all of this is that he’ll manipulate this situation in order to maintain his power at all costs. We’ll see how gracefully he gives up that power should the charges come.
Trump might watching this as a playbook for his own potential downfall.