Profile picture
Anshel Pfeffer @AnshelPfeffer
, 28 tweets, 7 min read Read on Twitter
If Lieberman does resign in 2 hours, it will be a brilliant act of timing, preempting Netanyahu's expected decision on elections and linking the campaign with Gaza - which is exactly what Netanyahu was trying to avoid by pushing for the ceasefire.
Theoretically, Netanyahu can soldier on without Lieberman's lot, with 61MK coalition. But elections will have to be held within 12 months anyway, and will be impossible to hold coalition together for other reasons (draft law, Bennett needs show he's as right-wing as Lieberman)
Lieberman's 3 problems in the upcoming election - 1. His party's perilously close to the electoral threshold, spelling political extinction. 2. With Netanyahu and Bennett as strong rivals, it's even harder to stay above water. 3. As Defense Minister, he's tainted by Gaza failure>
Resigning and accusing Netanyahu of rejecting all his plans on Gaza, he tackles all these problems. He defines the parameters of the upcoming elections, and presents himself to the right-wing voters as the real deal, unlike "weak Bibi and Bennett".
And if Lieberman leaves, Bibi needs a new defense minister and Bennett is planning to demand the job, putting Netanyahu in another bind. If he gives Bennett the job, he elevates another right-wing rival. If he doesn't Bennett can also leave the coalition and force elections.
While we're waiting for Lieberman's (resignation?) statement in half an hour, here's my in-depth analysis of last night's Jerusalem mayoral election result, what it means for the city, for Israel and for Jews everywhere.…
Unconfirmed reports from within the closed meeting of Yisrael Beitenu Knesset faction, that Lieberman has told them he's resigning. Still not clear if that means the party will also be leaving the coalition (the party also has another minister) and calling for early elections.
More quotes coming out of the closed Yisrael Beitenu meeting. Lieberman: I will resign and call for early elections.
So that's it. Netanyahu still has the smallest majority of 61 MKs without YB, but they can't hold on. Early elections on the most disadvantageous terms for Bibi.
Likud is briefing like mad that there's no reason to go for early elections. It's hopeless, they won't be able to drag the coalition's carcass along. But they want to try and move the narrative on as far as possible away from Gaza before the official election campaign begins.
Best bit in the Likud briefings: They're saying for now Netanyahu can hold on to the Defense Ministry. That will make him PM, Foreign and Defense Minister all at the same time. I'm sure he'd be fine with the rest of the ministers resigning as well, he could do all their jobs.
Lieberman's on. Looks quite cheerful. "You've guessed right. I'm here to resign from the defense ministry"
He calls yesterday's Gaza ceasefire "a surrender to terror, there is no other name for it. We're buying short-term quiet with damage to our long-term security"
Lieberman listing some issues he's fought over with Netanyahu, in addition to Gaza ceasefire - Diesel fuel to Gaza, Khan al-Ahmar eviction.
"I didn't mean to resign, but there were 2 critical turning-points": 1. Transfer of Qatari money to Hamas. 2. Gaza ceasefire. "Unacceptable"
Lieberman: "If I had remained in post, I couldn't have looked in the eyes of our citizens in the south and the family members of the dead IDF soldiers whose bodies are held by Hamas. Any humanitarian improvement in Gaza should have been conditional on their being returned".
Lieberman piling on to the list every criticism the ideological right-wing has had of Israel's security policy going back to the Shalit prisoner deal in 2011 and even disengagement from Gaza in 2005. He's not mentioning him by name but of course he's saying "Bibi supported that!"
On to reporters' questions and Lieberman's already called a journalist asking him something difficult "not a serious journalist, you're a journalist with an agenda". Everyone everywhere is learning how to do it from Donald Trump.
So apparently Netanyahu hasn't even been informed in advance. Lieberman told his party colleagues first, now the media, and later today he'll be sending the PM his official resignation letter. Then he'll be talking with party heads on a date for early elections.
And now Lieberman's confirmed that his resignation means the departure of all the Yisrael Beitenu Knesset members from the government/coalition. So that's it, the coalition is down to 61, smallest possible majority. It can survive for long. Early elections, probably in March 2019
Question to Lieberman from (Sheldon Adelson-owned) Yisrael Hayom freesheet. "All the security chiefs opposed your views didn't have they?" - we can of course expect that to be a central part of the Likud pushback in the next few hours.
Reporters trying to draw Lieberman in to saying something about Netanyahu, but he's so far not mentioned the PM personally even once. He doesn't have to, it's clear who he's gunning for, but he also wants to taint all his other cabinet rivals, who he'll be running against as weak
Lieberman's resignation statement over. Israel's election season begins.
1 quick observation. Lieberman chose the best moment for him to leave, and the worst for Netanyahu. But it will be difficult for either of them, to attack each other over the security policy they were jointly responsible for. Both will fudge the details. Lieberman went first.
Netanyahu BTW is this morning down in the Negev, at David Ben Gurion's annual memorial service. He just made a speech about what's expected from the national leader. Bibi is conciously trying to emulate BG and still hopes of course to beat his record term in office, in 6 months.
Here's our @haaretzcom report on Lieberman's resignation statement and press conference, by @chaimlevinson…
Two fresh Likud spins: 1 Lieberman is weak, all it took was a 24-hour battle with Hamas in Gaza for him to resign. He could never handle Iran. 2 Those threatening Netanyahu will be held responsible for bringing down a right-wing government (double-headed warning to Bennett also)
How sad. Donald Trump's grand peace deal of the century for Israel and Palestine will have to be postponed again until after the election in Israel.
And here's my @haaretzcom analysis on Lieberman's resignation which has sparked off Israel's election campaign. Been an interesting day so far.…
Re-upping my @haaretzcom piece from last night why Netanyahu was so eager for a quick ceasefire deal with Hamas. One reason, to get Gaza off the agenda before elections, also the reason Lieberman resigned today, while Gaza's still fresh in voters' memories…
In wake of Lieberman's resignation, @NewsChannelIL poll has Likud down to 29 seats (from peak of 35 just a few months ago) and Lieberman's Yisrael Beiteinu which was languishing at 4-5 up to 7. Public satisfaction with Netanyahu's handling of security Affairs plummeting to 17-74.
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Anshel Pfeffer
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member and get exclusive features!

Premium member ($30.00/year)

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!