Two-state solution loses champion as Livni drops from race

Tzipi Livni couldn’t save Israel because Israel doesn’t want to be saved

Tzipi Livni quits politics

Mazal Mualem writes in Al Monitor, “Right after Israel Resilience head Benny Gantz launched his election campaign, Hatnua suffered a final collapse in the polls. Gantz’ party almost doubled its strength within a day at the expense of the other center-left parties. Inevitably, the headlines referred to the phenomenon as the “Gantz effect.” Its main victims were the Labor Party, which plunged to the single-digit range; Yesh Atid, which lost several precious seats; and Knesset member Tzipi Livni’s Hatnua, which was just within arm’s reach of the electoral threshold.”…

“Livni called a press conference on the afternoon of Feb. 18. With tears in her eyes, she announced that she was dropping out of the upcoming election. She could have drawn the process out a bit longer — the deadline for submitting party lists is Feb. 21 — but she decided to put a stop to everything, admitting that as things now stand, she lacks the political strength to see her vision, diplomatic negotiations with the Palestinians to advance a two-state solution, fulfilled.”

““The last few years have been especially hard for me,” she said. “‘Peace’ became a rude word. … Attempts to separate from the Palestinians were replaced with ideas of annexation, which would lead to an Arab majority. … Throughout this, I never hid my path or my vision.” Toward the end of her remarks, she added that she would never forgive herself if votes for her ended up being wasted. Livni’s forced exit from the game marks the end of a political era that began around the time of the Oslo Accords, before she was first elected to the Knesset. It was the first time that Israel began implementing a diplomatic plan based on the idea of partition, a real political earthquake. The concept has taken center stage in every election since.” (more…)

Ariel Sharon and Tzipi Livni, leaders of Kadima, January 13, 2001

Edo Konrad writes in +972, “It’s strange to consider that a mere decade ago, Tzipi Livni and her Kadima party won the Israeli elections. Yet 10 years since Benjamin Netanyahu pushed her into the opposition back benches, Livni tearfully announced on Monday that she will not be running in the upcoming elections. Polls show her Hatnuah party wouldn’t make it past the election threshold and running anyway could potentially siphon votes from a center-left bloc that seeks to overthrow Netanyahu.”

“Israel’s liberal commentators commended her undying commitment to a two-state solution to preserve Israel as “both Jewish and democratic,” but beyond the left-leaning intelligentsia, her resignation went on with little fanfare. At a time where the right’s twin policies of endless occupation and creeping annexationgo entirely unchallenged, it is hardly surprising that few are rushing to write Livni’s requiem.

“After all, in every election since 2009, Livni was a politician who, try as she might, simply couldn’t get things to go her way, jumping from party to party and forging puzzling alliances in an attempt to hold on to political relevancy. Yet when it came to what my colleague Dahlia Scheindlin calls doing the “politics of politics,” Livni failed time and time again.”

“Had things turned out differently, her life story would have been the stuff Hollywood kitsch is made of: born to right-wing parents who fought in the ranks of the Irgun terrorist group during the 1948 war, Livni went on to serve in the Mossad and become a member of Knesset on behalf of Likud. That is, until she realized the effect the occupation has on Israeli society, and particularly its threat to Israel’s ability to preserve a Jewish majority and still call itself a democracy.” (more…)


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