Governance Matters

Sober lessons from Israel.

Dan Drezner asks in a piece in Politico, Will the United States Be the Next Israel?

What’s happening in Israel now is a disturbing example of what can happen when elected officials use partisan and personal motivations to warp national security. For years, Republicans in Congress have attempted to sabotage what they call the “Deep State.” This includes placing holds on political nominees and castigating diplomats, officers and analysts employed in the government as captives to “Big Woke.” They might see it as political theater, necessary to boosting profiles and fundraising. But as this week shows, there can be a price.

Reporting suggests that the hardline elements of Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition were openly hostile to warnings from the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) and security agency Shin Bet that settler violence would increase the security threat to Israel. One Likud member of parliament complained: “The ideology of the left has reached the top echelons of the Shin Bet. The deep state has infiltrated the leadership of the Shin Bet and the IDF.” Another Netanyahu coalition member stated, “We see there is confusion as to who is an enemy.”

The piece provides some insights into how poor governance on the part of the Netanyahu government helped contribute to the unfolding tragedy we are seeing in Israel at the moment. And it does hold a serious cautionary tale for Americans who, if they are paying attention, can already see how crude politics, such as Senator Tuberville’s hold scheme, can negatively impact national security.

I recommend the piece in full.

I will also note the following via The Times of Israel, Poll shows backing for Netanyahu imploding, Gantz taking the rudder.

Respondents show a marked preference for Gantz over Netanyahu leading the country, 48 percent want the former defense minister, compared to 29% for the current prime minister.

They give IDF chief Herzi Halevi a 57% approval rating, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant a 54% rating, with Netanyahu only getting 42%. Even among likely Likud voters, Netanyahu only gets 67%.

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Jay L Gischer says:

    That ideology can puts on blinders is a given to me, something I can observe every day. As for support for Netanyahu eroding – that’s something I would love to see, though I would have wished for a lower price. Of course, since it’s what I want to hear, I will reserve myself from celebrating until it is a done deal.

  2. gVOR10 says:

    The use of MAGA terminology by right wing Israeli politicians is noteworthy. Is it just mimicry or is it, once again, as in Hungary and elsewhere, a sign of American, Republican, trained political consultants working for foreign politicians?

  3. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    I’m inclined to think that the difference is that we’ve already “settled” (no pun intended) our Palestinians problem and that we don’t have multiple faction/splinter political parties. If we had 6 or 7 or 8 splinter parties, our government would look a lot more like Israel’s.