Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could not have hoped for more: Within less than a week, two high-ranking leaders publicly sided with him. First, President Reuven Rivlin joined the ranks of the prime minister’s spokespeople. The popular Israeli president joined the campaign against Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Netanyahu would have been hard pressed to articulate his opposition to the French peace initiative better than Rivlin did in his June 22 speech to the European Parliament in Brussels.
Five days later, Netanyahu completed the reconciliation deal with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Israel’s partner in the fight against the European Union. The end of the crisis with Turkey came just in time for the start of the long summer vacation. Masses of Israelis — Jews and Arabs alike — can once again flock to the all-inclusive Antalya resorts. It's the surest way to make them forget or forgive the price of the luxury hotels of which the Netanyahus are particularly fond and the controversy over the prime minister’s residences. Who remembers the critical comments made last week by former Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon against Netanyahu at the Herzliya Conference and the combative appearance of former Prime Minister Ehud Barak on Channel 2?