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Shimon Peres: Frustration and Disappointment with Netanyahu

In recent years, President Shimon Peres kept on believing that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would adhere to his vision of peace, while the Prime Minister steps away from his Bar Ilan speech and gets closer to his right wing electorate, writes Mazal Mualem.
Israel's President Shimon Peres (R) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speak during the annual memorial ceremony for Israel's first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, at Sde Boker in southern Israel November 20, 2012. Israel wants to find a long-term, diplomatic solution to resolve the Gaza crisis, but will not hesitate to escalate its military campaign against Palestinian militants if needed, Netanyahu said on Tuesday. REUTERS/Dan Balilty/Pool (ISRAEL - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST ANNIVERSARY)
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The television debate before the 1996 elections was the first time that Shimon Peres and Benjamin Netanyahu went head-to-head with each other. Netanyahu was victorious in that round, and two days later also won the elections and took the prime minister’s job away from Peres, on his way to his first term of office. Since then the relationship between the two has been complex. Over the last four years the relationship has been characterized by many hopes, mainly on the part of Peres, only for those hopes to be dashed. Nevertheless, it seems that last week, the relationship hit a new low.

After almost four years of stagnation in diplomatic negotiations, accompanied by severe deterioration in Israel’s foreign relations with the United States and Europe — Peres allowed himself to publicly express his frustration and disappointment at Netanyahu.

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