While there have been reports of progress between Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud and Gantz’s Israel Resilience Party on what is being deemed a potential “unity” government, both sides have announced that in the last 24 hours talks have completely collapsed.
Two challenges that the sides face in reaching a deal remain elusive. The first is the issue of annexing large areas in Israel’s biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria as part of the Trump peace initiative. Netanyahu would like to move swiftly and Gantz who appears to be taking his cue from the far left on this issue, wants some sort of international consensus.
The second issue and one that is perhaps far more important is judicial appointments. Gantz’s party would like to turn the clock back on the progress the Likud and its allies have made in tearing down Israel’s judicial junta. This is perhaps the biggest sticking point and one that is not easily bridgeable.
With the Jewish holiday of Pesach closing in, Israel appears farther away than every in finding an elusive coalition.
With COVID-19 raging across the world, Iran closing in, and the economy in tatters, Israel’s ultimate test is upon it. For that it will need a different type of leadership than it has ever had.