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Israeli right prepares for post-Netanyahu era

Rivals from within the Likud Party and leaders of other coalition partners are already preparing for the moment Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will have to step down.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem January 29,  2017. REUTERS/Abir Sultan/Pool - RTSXV3R
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Until two months ago, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seemed unbeatable. Then, police accelerated investigations against him. If indicted, he could actually vanish from the political scene abruptly. And so, even if it is not at all certain whether Netanyahu will be indicted, his unstable political situation has provoked potential heirs within the Likud and right-wing camp rivals to quietly start preparing for the day the Netanyahu era comes to an end.

Netanyahu’s rivals all share the same working assumption that the right will stay in power, and so the leader of the right will be Israel's next prime minister. The exciting succession battle that is fought right now will reshape the right-wing camp, since Netanyahu has no natural heir. For the most part, the leadership of the right has long been in the image of a single man (Netanyahu), who made sure to eliminate his rivals and sideline his party's most upper echelons.

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