Michael Koplow, writing in Foreign Affairs, argues that the narrative that emerged immediately after the Israeli election probably isn’t correct:
No, Israel Did Not Just Vote for the Center: Why the Right is Still Dominant
The surprisingly strong performance of Yair Lapid in Israel’s election, coupled with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s losses, have led many to conclude that Israeli voters have shifted to the center. But Lapid’s party is conservative where it counts—on security issues—and the voters who left Netanyahu largely went even further to the right.
Michael Cohen, in the Guardian, makes a similar point with regard to the peace process.
If you happen to be in or near the Omaha area, you can hear me talk about the results of the Israeli election on Thursday night.
Haaretz has a great piece on Yair Lapid and the success of his new Yesh Atid party:
Despite the constant mocking and relentless scorn he received from social media users, despite a tumultuous campaign that often ventured into clichés, having suffered from a lousy start and struggled with what seemed to be an infinite number of mistakes and gaffes, Yair Lapid did it.
[T]here’s a bigger story here, or at least a more interesting one, than the hilarity that Lapid inspires. Yesh Atid, a haven for young and middle-aged Ashkenazis with a tendency for yuppieness and a distinct feeling their country has been stolen by settlers and the ultra-Orthodox, won 19 seats on Tuesday.
Also, here is the NYT piece on Lapid.
It’ll be fascinating to see how a coalition gets pulled together out of these election results … especially as I’m supposed to lecture on precisely that topic at an event next week.