Israel's Parliament voted to dissolve itself after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to form a government.
BEIRUT -- For Israel, Hezbollah must be incapacitated or destroyed; war becomes inexorable by implication. The question is whether Israel has concluded that now -- with America engrossed in its presidential election -- is the moment to launch the war.
The Prime Minister also signed a coalition deal with Avigdor Lieberman's party, forming the most right wing government in Israel's history.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been engaged in public negotiations designed to bring Isaac Herzog into his coalition government. And then, out of the blue, Netanyahu did a complete reversal, dropping Herzog and instead bringing the far right Avigdor Lieberman into his government.
It was a political sleight of hand worthy of a "House of Cards" script.
Conservatives believe that Israel's Likud defeated the liberal Zionist Union. But the evidence shows that's not the case. Benjamin Netanyahu was able to pick up 12 more seats, almost entirely at the expense of other conservative parties, with a shift to the right.
On Monday, Joint Arab List candidate Ahmad Tibi compared Lieberman to the Islamic State and demanded a police investigation
Netanyahu's insistence on passing a bill that will define Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people is as disgraceful as his denial that Israel is not an occupying power. If the bill were to pass now or in the future, it would blow up what's left of Israel's democracy and destroy rather than save the Jews' last haven for which they have yearned for centuries.
One need not look far and wide to discern Netanyahu's disingenuousness and misguided policies that have only undermined Israel's future security. He uses his political skills to deceive and mislead in order to "protect himself from political defeat" while disregarding what is best for the future of the state.
While I can humanly and psychologically understand why fear pushes many Israelis to the right, I cannot help feeling, along with many of my friends, that the country is moving so far away from our ideals and values that we are becoming strangers in our own land.
The Netanyahu-led government's announcement of its decision to annex nearly 1,000 acres of Palestinian land in the West Bank between the Etzion settlement block and Jerusalem amounts to nothing less than a reckless and offensive act that only further undermines Israel's moral international standing and has dire future consequences.
The new ceasefire between Israel and Hamas has immediately raised the same old question: Will it last, or is it merely just another pause, providing the prelude for the next round of fighting à la previous ceasefires? I believe the current ceasefire is different as it was achieved under completely different circumstances and may well last.
Jewish liberals -- in Israel and the Diaspora -- need to realize that the time has come to stop mourning Israel's idealized image.
Sign up below to get Ryan Grim's occasional newsletter Lieberman and Bennett were the only two members of Netanyahu's security