Skip to main content

Netanyahu paves way of radical-right party to enter Knesset

By choosing to help Otzma Yehudit pass the voter threshold, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has paved the way for the party to enter the Knesset.
Israeli extreme right-wing activist Dr. Micael Ben-Ari, leader of Otzma Yehudit party is carried by supporters at the party's election campaign event in Bat Yam on April 06, 2019.  (Photo by Gili Yaari/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Read in 

Just before last April’s election, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu forced the radical-right Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) party into the wavering arms of Rabbi Rafi Peretz, then-chairman of the religious right United Right party. By doing this, Netanyahu granted legitimacy to the violent, often feral disciples of the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, making them an inseparable part of the right-wing bloc that he so wanted to strengthen.

The merger of Otzma Yehudit with the other right-wing parties came to an end in the current election campaign. The leaders of Otzma Yehudit realized that they are deemed undesirable by at least some leaders of the religious right, so they decided to take advantage of the publicity and legitimacy, which Netanyahu offered them in April, and attempt to pass the voter threshold on their own.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.