Sunday, February 08, 2009


The Conservative Netanyahu Benefiting Most From the Internet



While the Left seems to thrive on the internet in American politics in Israel Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party is clearly making the most productive use of the internet. Today, Israel's largest newspaper (generally unfriendly to Right wing candidates) published an article on how Netanyahu is bypassing the generally Left oriented mainstream press by issuing daily videos on You Tube. In the article one politician says that while Netanyahu is using the new media his main rival Tzipi Livni is running around from television studio to television studio. This race looks like a reverse of the recent election in the United States. In this case Livni is McCain and Netanyahu is Obama: A case of ideological role reversal.

Meanwhile, the polls are showing a steady lead for Likud, a falling Kadima, a surging of a minor party, and an uncertain outcome for the Labor Party. One thing is clear the Right will replace the Left in the next government. Polls show Israelis are tired of their government treating terrorists with kid gloves. One thing is quite clear, the Right will replace the Left in the next government.

Despite the polls, there are spirited campaigns taking place. Over 40 parties are on the ballot. On the Left, Labor leader Barak today criticized Netanyahu for being too much of a capitalist. In other words he wants voters to believe that Netanyahu is responsible for the world-wide economic downturn. Meanwhile Livni has launched a campaign that declares that Israel needs a woman to secure the country. This is an attempt to overcome the widespread feeling among voters that Livni is not up to the job of securing the nation. She first tried to overcome this problem by making outlandish claims about how she won the war in Gaza. No one believed her farfetched claims.

Today, on another front two more Right wing parties are trying to convince voters that they are stronger on the Arab issue than anyone else. This is because a party headed by Avigdor Leiberman which has been sharply critical of Arabs appears to be doing quite well.

Will all this activity make a difference? We shall see. The election is next week February 10.