Peter Malcontent on current elections in Israel

Verkiezingen in Israël © iStockphoto.com/yula
© iStockphoto.com/yula

On March 23, Israelis go to the polls for the fourth time in two years. In the campaigns surrounding these elections, the issue of Palestine has hardly been addressed, although silently, a consensus seems to arise on how it should be dealt with. In various media, Dr Peter Malcontent (History and Art History) explains the role of Palestine in the current elections.

Dr. Peter Malcontent
Dr Peter Malcontent

Shifting power relations

Shifting power relations in the Middle East are one reason why Israeli politicians are silent on the issue of Palestine. "Palestine’s status as Israel’s number one perceived security threat has been overtaken by Iran due to its nuclear program and its quest for regional hegemony," Malcontent writes in The Conversation. "This change in attitude among voters is supported by regular opinion polls as well as campaign rhetoric."

Rising consensus

At the same time, recently, there seems to be a tendency among voters to support right-wing parties. "As a result, we are confronted with a situation in which there is a rising consensus in Israel itself on how the Palestinian issue has to be dealt with," Malcontent says in an interview with Indus News. "And this consensus is that the Palestinians should be confronted with strength, by the sword, so to say". This rhetoric is also used in the context of Israel's tensions with Iran.