Israeli politics has become a la-la land. First came the clashing victory declarations by Blue and White Party chair Benny Gantz and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately after the polls closed on April 9. It was followed by a reasonable assessment that the political right would be able to form a coalition government with the ultra-Orthodox parties and the far-right Israel Power Party. Then Netanyahu’s on-again, off-again ally Avigdor Liberman flipped from total loyalty to Netanyahu and joined the “anyone but Netanyahu” camp. Without Liberman and given Netanyahu’s refusal to allow anyone else from his party to form a government, Netanyahu engineered the disbanding of the just-sworn-in Knesset and set new elections for Sept. 17.
On June 25, with polls that Netanyahu commissioned showing that the elections for the 22nd Knesset could cost him his job at the worst possible time, Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein came up with an idea straight out of a Federico Fellini script: revoke the law dissolving the Knesset and form a national unity government led by Netanyahu and Gantz.