For the second time in five months, Israelis head to the polls in a general election attempting to break the political deadlock there. For Palestinians, however, the ballot is effectively a non-event, and the only certainty is that they will continue to suffer under the hands of their Israeli occupiers and oppressors. The reality, too, is that the Palestinian people will only become further marginalised, living in what is effectively an apartheid state.
Opinion polls indicated that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the centrist Blue and White alliance led by ex-military chief Benny Gantz are neck-and-neck, and a repeat of last April’s stalemate cannot be ruled out. After months of political vacillation, there is every likelihood that Israelis may be suffering from burnout.
Make no mistake, the re-election of Netanyahu will effectively kill the two-state solution as the only way forward in solving the Israeli-Palestinian question.
With bribery and corruption charges hanging over Netanyahu, his days are numbered should he once more fail to form a government. Certainly, as far as Palestinians are concerned, he should also face charges for the war crimes, grand theft and blatant larceny of Palestinian lands to build colonies, deception for having occupied Jerusalem recognised by the Trump administration, and any range of criminal charges for the suppression of Palestinian rights, heritage and culture.
Make no mistake, the re-election of Netanyahu will effectively kill the two-state solution as the only way forward in solving the Israeli-Palestinian question. It is the only means of guaranteeing Palestinian rights and autonomy, securing their homeland, offering the hope of the right of return, and recognising occupied East Jerusalem as the capital of that fully fledged Palestinian nation.
Under Netanyahu, Palestinian lands have been eroded, stolen in succession for colonies to satiate Israeli demands for houses, demolishing Palestinians holdings, homes and farmsteads that have existed across generations and centuries. He now has his sights set on West Bank territory and the Jordan Valley, an annexation that would be illegal, immoral and ill-conceived, guaranteeing that conflict and violence would inevitably follow.
Tuesday’s election is likely to see more ultra-Jewish and more radical Zionist members elected to the Knesset — a trend that will only further embolden those building an apartheid state. With neither Gantz nor Netanyahu unable to form a government without their support, it is the Palestinians who will pay the ultimate price. What more indignities must be endured by a people who have lived through the injustices and transgressions of Israeli occupation and their forces of repression for the past seven decades?