Israel fears ‘absolute power’
Protests in Israel continue. According to Israeli President Yitzhak Herzog, the country even risks disintegrating. “The protesters are fighting for the preservation of democracy,” says foreign commentator Jan van Benthem of the Nederlands Dagblad.
Israelis have been taking to the streets in droves for weeks. There are fierce protests against Prime Minister Netanyahu’s legislative reforms. These changes would sideline the Supreme Court, while giving more weight to Parliament. “Protesters fear that Netanyahu will gain absolute power,” on this subject. It is also rumbling within the army now that many reservists are taking part in the demonstrations.
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Netanyahu’s absolute power is dangerous, says Van Benthem. Because currently, the government in place is the most right wing in the history of Israel. This not only affects foreign policy, but also escalates the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. “The far-right government will certainly not favor the peace process. There is a good chance that the unrest will escalate. World leaders like Joe Biden are voicing their concerns, and the Jewish community in the United States is also watching with tension.
Although this government is democratically elected, a large part of the population opposes Netanyahu’s radical ideas. This is due to a demographic shift, says Van Benthem. “The liberal population group is getting smaller and smaller. This explains the shift in power to the far right.
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