It was a very embarrassing day for the pollsters and the media talking heads. No one predicted anything close to what actually happened on election night, March 17,2015. It will be studied and referred to by analysts for a long time to come.
Since elections were announced three months ago, the media, academia and entertainment class pooled their efforts to unseat their hated nemesis. prime minister Netanyahu. It was simply and unabashedly a “just not Bibi” campaign.
President Obama sent his trusted advisers and lots of tax payer money to oil the anti Bibi machine. Thousands were hired to knock on doors to get out the “just not Bibi” vote.
The Israeli Arab population ( lately they prefer to be called “Palestinians”) were their key target. This year, for the first time, three Arab parties consolidated to form the “Joint List”. The ardent “volunteers” urged the Arabs to get out and vote as the “United List” would hopefully block a right wing/Bibi coalition..
I must say, like many right wing voters, I was really concerned that the atmosphere created by the opinion maker elites would indeed grease the wheels for an Arab/Left government. Israelis were fed by the “elites” three months of doom and despair and the personal dehumanization of Bibi and his wife. Now, I am not a blind fan of Bibi but, hey, if Obama and the Left/Arabs want to destroy him, he must be doing something right.
When it looked like a sure victory for the Arabs/Left was just hours away, Bibi yelled “Gevald!”. Hours before the polls closed, he warned that the Arabs were storming the polls in droves. In a moment of urgency, the politically correct mask came off. The Jewish, if not the Israeli state was in real danger. Apparently this revelation was enough of a wake up call for lots of now very concerned Jews.
So, what was predicted as a clear Left lead over the Likud, turned out to be the opposite. Thelikud surged ahead of the left despite Obama’s advisers and money. There is an old Yiddish expression,”der mentch tracht und Gott lacht”(Man plans and God laughs). The wisest of men, King Solomon wrote in Proverbs: The hearts of kings are in the Hand of God” . In 1996 when Shimon Peres called early elections and ran against Netanyahu,a similar thing happened. The Arab/Left bloc was, according to the experts, supposed to beat Bibi hands down. After their early victory announcement Peres and Israel woke the next morning up to a slim Bibi victory.
When a stunned Peres was asked, “who lost this election? he answered, “The Israelis”. He was then asked , “and who won”? He answered, “the Jews”. Is there anything more revealing in this honest expression of a stunned loser?
One wonders, what makes the Leftists tick. It is an old and often debated question. I have not yet heard a good answer, but I saw it in action just a day before the elections.
There is a kibbutz near my neighborhood in Jerusalem called kibbutz Ramat Rachel, named after the Matriarch, Rachel whose tomb is a couple of miles down the road in Bethlehem.
The kibbutz was settled by Left / very secular pioneers in the 1920’s. They have been attacked a number of times by their Arab neighbors and invading Arab armies since. (They have a nice sports center where I am a member.)
With this back ground in mind I found the following incident particularly puzzling:
At the entrance to the sports center sat an older woman who casually remarked,” So what will be tomorrow with the elections”? I said , lets hope that the Left and the Arabs don’t win.”. Well, the young kibbutz member sitting at the desk exploded! He screamed at me,” who says that you are better than the Arabs”! They love this land more than you do”! I must say I was surprised both by the fury and the content. I told him I believe that I do love this land and country more than the Arabs do who openly support and identify with our enemies. He then made some kind of scowling reference to my kippa and I knew then that his indoctrination was much stronger than logic or basic survival instinct so I just let it go. As I went home, images of a victory for these Israelis and their Israeli Arab allies worried me.