Benjamin Netanyahu

Netanyahu pledges to face down Iran

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 2, 2009

Stabilising the Israeli economy, dealing with the Iranian threat and establishing a dialogue with the Obama administration will be the first priorities of Binyamin Netanyahu’s new government, which was sworn in on Tuesday night.

With 30 ministers and eight deputy ministers, Mr Netanyahu’s Cabinet is the largest government in Israel’s history, and is based on a coalition of six parties and 74 members of the Knesset.

More..

Netanyahu pact splits Likud

By Anshel Pfeffer, March 26, 2009

The only obstacle still standing in the way of Binyamin Netanyahu forming a government next week is a possible revolt within his own party.

Likud members are angry with Mr Netanyahu for allocating most of the senior cabinet positions to the other parties in his coalition. “We are going to give him a rough ride when he presents the coalition agreements to the Likud Central Committee next week,” said one disgruntled MK. “Netanyahu has given everything away to the coalition partners and Likud, the ruling party, has to make do with leftovers.”

More..

Top job for Lieberman as Bibi is forced right

By Anshel Pfeffer, March 12, 2009

The key appointments in Israel’s new government, being sworn in on March 18, will be Avigdor Lieberman as Foreign Minister and Moshe Yaalon as Defence Minister.

Prime Minister-designate Binyamin Netanyahu has failed to convince the leaders of Kadima and Labour, the mainstream parties in the Knesset, to join his coalition. His new government, therefore, will be based on a narrow, right-wing coalition, leaving Mr Netanyahu no choice but to accede to most of his partners’ demands.

More..

Ehud Barak may leave Labour for Netanyahu

By Anshel Pfeffer, March 5, 2009

Defence Minister Ehud Barak is considering leaving Labour to join Binyamin Netanyahu's government as an independent MK, according to party sources.

Mr Barak mobilised business leaders, former Supreme Court judges and retired senior IDF officers to lobby his colleagues in an attempt to forge a party-wide coalition with Likud. So far, however, Labour's Knesset members remain overwhelmingly opposed.

"There are rumours that Barak has support from the party for coalition talks," said MK Danny Ben-Simon. "But the rumours are being put out by Barak's political advisors.

More..

Netanyahu will face 'tough' US demands

By Anshel Pfeffer, March 5, 2009

Sources close to Prime Minister-elect Binyamin Netanyahu have warned that they anticipate "a tough time" from the Obama administration over the Middle East peace process.

Visiting Israel this week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave a clear indication that she expected Israel to do more on both the Palestinian and Syrian fronts.

"Clinton left us with no illusions," said a senior adviser to Mr Netanyahu.

More..

Netanyahu’s coalition offer splits Kadima

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 26, 2009

Senior figures in Kadima are putting pressure on leader Tzipi Livni to accept Prime Minister-elect Binyamin Netanyahu’s offer to participate in a national unity coalition.

The two party leaders met on Sunday and Mr Netanyahu, tasked by President Shimon Peres last Friday with forming Israel’s next government, offered Kadima eight ministerial positions — equal to that of Likud — including two out of the three senior portfolios of defence, finance and foreign affairs.

More..

Peres turns to Netanyahu

By Marcus Dysch, February 20, 2009

Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu has been asked to form a government and be the next prime minister of Israel.

President Shimon Peres met Mr Netanyahu and Kadima leader Tzipi Livni this morning, and will entrust the former PM with creating a coalition.

Mr Netanyahu is likely to ask Ms Livni and Labo u r party chairman Ehud Barak to join him in a broad administration, although Ms Livni has suggested she will turn down any approach.

The new prime minister will have six weeks to create a cabinet.

More..

Lieberman endorses Netanyahu

By Daniella Peled, February 19, 2009

The head of the far-right Yisrael Beiteinu party has publically backed Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu to be the next prime minister of Israel.

Avigdor Lieberman told President Shimon Peres today that his party - which holds 15 seats in the Knesset - would endorse the Likud chairman, providing he could create a broad coalition.

Mr Lieberman said the options were “a broad government, which is what we want. A narrow government, that will be a government of paralysis, but we don’t rule out sitting in it.

“And the third option is going to elections, which will achieve nothing.”

More..

Kadima set to implode as defeat looms

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 5, 2009

In the last frantic days before the elections on Tuesday, the ruling party, Kadima, is already in disarray over what is expected to be its defeat at the hands of Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu.

Kadima leader Tzipi Livni is being attacked for the campaign she ran and plans are already being made to mount a leadership challenge immediately after the elections.

More..

Bibi plans ‘comeback book’ on the economy

By Anshel Pfeffer, May 30, 2008

Likud Leader Binyamin Netanyahu is preparing to bring out an autobiographical book on his term as Israel’s Finance Minister as part of his plan to rehabilitate his image and sweep back to power in the next elections.

The new book, expected to come out towards the end of summer, deals with the reasons that Israel’s economy is booming, despite a lack of natural resources and devoting a significant portion of its GDP to security costs.

More..