There’s too much drama going on in my life. First there’s the coronavirus and all its ramifications – seclusion, isolation, alienation, claustrophobia, agorophobia, to name but a few.
And on top of all that, there’s the political situation in Israel. First there were three general elections in rapid succession, with none of them producing a clear-cut result. Then one party managed to get its act together and tried to form a government, but the party that was in power refused to step politely aside, so that a lot of time was wasted in political machinations, maneuvering and juggling. When some kind of resolution seemed to be just over the horizon, the Speaker of the Knesset, apparently in cahoots with the prime minister, conducted a series of blocking actions, culminating in his downright refusal to accept the ruling of the Supreme Court that he had to convene the Knesset so that a new Speaker could be appointed.
And all this was going on in the shadow of the pandemic which has left thousands of Israelis – and people all over the world – in inadequately equipped hospitals or at home in isolation, as well as a general lockdown which kept most of the populace confined to home. Now penalties have been introduced for leaving home without having a sufficiently good reason, namely, to get food or medicines.
After a couple of days’ delay while the politicians discussed what to do next, we were suddenly confronted by a fait accompli in which Benny Gantz, the leader of the Blue and White party that had been challenging the Likud and Bibi Netanyahu for domination of the government, threw his lot in with the very man he had been denouncing as an indicted criminal. By accepting a post in his government Gantz caused a split in his party and its virtual disintegration. The compromise of a rotating premiership is supposedly the solution, but the general view is that Netanyahu’s undertaking to cede his position after eighteen months will never be met.
There are two schools of thought about Gantz. One says that he showed that he is inept and weak, and above all self-seeking, although he claims that he acted as he did in order to bring unity to the country and end the political deadlock. The other school claims that Gantz proved that he is a consummate politician in being able to break the promises he made during the election process and stab his colleagues in the back.
One way or another, it’s a conclusion of sorts to the political impasse in which Israel has been stuck for the last year or two, with some hope of a decent outcome somewhere in the future.
All that remains to be resolved is the issue of the coronavirus, and there’s no knowing how and when that will end. Meanwhile, we senior citizens continue to remain at home, trying to keep ourselves occupied and entertained with the various means at our disposal. Hurrah for the wonders of modern electronic communications.