Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Out With Livni, In With Mofaz

The Kadima Party held its leadership "primary" the other day, and current leader Tzipi Livni has been ousted in favor of Iranian-born Shaul Mofaz. Mofaz thus becomes the first Sephardic Jew to lead Israel's main opposition party.

I'm a strong Livni booster, so obviously I'm disappointed to see her defeat. Mofaz's views are somewhat of a mystery -- 972Mag has a good takeaway of the fallout we can expect to see from his ascension -- but I'm hopeful that he is at least close to the same mold as Livni; particularly, in urging that Israel take a more proactive and aggressive approach towards securing a peace deal. It is also at least possible that Mofaz will be willing to join a coalition with Netanyahu, which Livni refused to do. This would clearly be superior to the current right/far-right coalition which can barely stand up to settler terrorists, much less forge a deal -- bringing in Kadima would relieve pressure on Netanyahu's right flank and at least open up some space for maneuvering. And for the love of God, anything that gets Avigdor Lieberman out of the foreign ministry is a good thing by me.

But all of this is predicated on a lot of unknowns -- not the least of which how well Kadima even does the next election. So I guess we'll see -- both what the Israeli electorate wants, and what Shaul Mofaz does.

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