Unclear future for Livni’s daring diplomatic agenda

Tzipi Livni's two-state agenda leaves her isolated in Israels centre-left

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni speaks during a Zionist Union faction meeting

Mazal Mualem wrtites in Al Monitor, “The ouster of Hatnua Party Chair and chair of the opposition Tzipi Livni from the Zionist Camp in front of the cameras on Jan. 1 was for Chair of the Labor Party Avi Gabbay an act of leadership that was meant to rev up his faltering election campaign for prime minister. But according to responses in the field and various polls, the effect of the ouster shattered not only the Zionist Camp but also both Labor and Hatnua. This is bad news for the left at the beginning of the election cycle. Alliances and unions have not formed yet in the left-wing camp in order to create an alternative for the Likud’s rule headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and this option only grows more and more unlikely.”

“According to initial polls after the ouster, the Labor Party continues to collapse to only 7-8 mandates. The Hatnua Party headed by Livni teeters around the vote threshold. The Zionist Camp, with its 24 mandates, fell apart in one ugly moment. Much has been written — and will be written — on the event, the likes of which Israeli politics hasn’t seen yet: a party leader brutally on live TV ousts his senior political partner who holds the role of chair of the opposition. To Livni’s credit, it can be said that she recovered quickly from the hit, stood in front of the cameras an hour later and announced that she will continue in her path.”…

“Livni too is now at a crossroads. The woman who was very close to being Israel’s prime minister, who led a coherent diplomatic agenda of two states and negotiations with the Palestinians, and with this platform even reached 28 mandates in the 2009 election, today heads a party that is not at all certain to pass the vote threshold.”

“Since the dissolution of the Zionist Camp, Livni has made frequent appearances in the media to say that she feels relief and good about herself. In regard to Gabbay, she said that it is now clear to her that he has no capacity to serve as prime minister and has no path. In an interview to the morning news on Channel 12, Livni said, “We have a mission, and I am now the only one in the field who is still fighting for the diplomatic process.” Livni’s statement is very close to reality. Aside from the Meretz Party, there is no party today in Israel for which the diplomatic process tops its agenda and which does not wink to the right or speak in vague terms.” (more…)


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