Home Israel recent The Fall of the Israeli Left
Home Israel recent The Fall of the Israeli Left

The Fall of the Israeli Left

The last time that Israel had a prime minister from the Labor Party was over twenty years ago. Most military recruits were not even born or were in diapers the last time a member of the leftist socialist movement that had ruled the country in a virtually unbroken line of succession for a generation from Ben Gurion to Rabin last headed the country.

The news is even worse now with Labor, which once dominated the legislature of the Knesset, receiving only 4 seats making it the smallest party, below the Muslim Brotherhood’s Ra’am and the Arab Communist Hadash-Ta’al, not to mention the Jewish religious parties and the parties of Middle Eastern and Russian immigrants.

The last time this happened, Caroline Glick’s Latma, with hilarious cruelty, mocked the Labor Party for having more letters in its name than Knesset seats. “Hello, I would like to request a taxi for the entire Labor Party.” “Don’t bury us, there aren’t enough of us for a minyan.”

As badly as Labor did, Meretz performed even worse, failing to meet the legislative threshold. For the first time in a generation, the radical leftist party won’t even make it into the Knesset.

The parties of the Jewish Left, if you can even call them that, are down to 4 out of 120 seats.

The Left has become unelectable so it disguises itself in a rotating series of fake centrist parties, the latest of which is Yair Lapid’s ‘Yesh Atid’ whose function is to trick Israelis who would never vote for Labor or Meretz into voting for the Left. And Yesh Atid picked up 24 Knesset seats.

Yair Lapid, a television celebrity and the son of a famous father, is Israel’s Trudeau, a convenient front for the same old gang to run things while he mugs for the camera. He’s one of a line of retired generals and public figures fronting fake third parties who hold office only long enough for the public to realize that they didn’t vote for Labor, but got it anyway.

The electoral decline and fall of the Israeli Left was caused by two national revelations, the first was that Netanyahu’s free market economic policies, while not perfect, worked far better than Labor’s socialist monopolies, and that Labor’s signature policy, cutting a deal with the PLO was a murderous failure that threatened Israeli lives and the country on an unprecedented scale.

But the paradox of the Israeli Left is that it has virtually no electoral power, but nearly unlimited political power. There may not have been a Labor prime minister since 2001, but it still controls the machinery of officialdom from local bureaucrats to Supreme Court justices. Even while the media declares that the latest right-wing bogeyman is a “threat to democracy”, it is the civil servants, the prosecutors, judges, brass and administrators who actually run most things.

And who are the real threats to democracy.

There’s a reason Democrats often describe the Israeli Supreme Court with its unlimited power of judicial review and ability to override government decisions on everything from the macro to the micro, from where people can live to who should receive the Israeli Prize, as their model.

Beyond the upper echelons of the judiciary, prosecutors openly collaborate with the media and leftist activists to indict, prosecute and remove conservative, patriotic and Zionist elected officials. It was a bunch of these groundless prosecutions that forced Netanyahu out of office. To understand the Kafkaesque absurdity of the prosecutorial campaign against Netanyahu, it’s enough to mention that his wife was investigated over recycling bottle deposits.

To make sense of what’s going on though, you have to understand Israeli demographics.

While immigration moves the United States leftward, it moves Israel rightward. The conservative Likud’s base of support comes from the Middle Eastern Jewish immigrants who fled Muslim rule. The Russian immigrants, French and even Americans who move to Israel are not universally conservative, but tend to want governments that will protect them from Islamic terrorists.

The media is howling over the newfound influence of Itamar Ben-Gvir described as “far-right”, a “hateful extremist” and a “supremacist”. The Biden administration and Democrats have warned that they will have nothing to do with him and that Israel will alienate the United States.

What they don’t mention is that he’s the son of Iraqi Jewish immigrants.

Israel’s Left derives the majority of its support from the upper class elites of Tel Aviv who were part of the old socialist establishment. Israel’s Right leans heavily on the Middle Eastern and Russian immigrants whom they treated like dirt. They want a strong country and a weak bureaucracy. The old establishment Left wants a strong bureaucracy and a weak country.

Talk to members of that old establishment and you find that they are a small incestuous group. Israel is a small country, but in those circles, everyone really knows everyone else, they went to school with them, served with them, or lived next door to them. They feel that their country, with its cafes and kibbutzim, red flags and membership in an international socialist order, and the more intangible cultural elements, was stolen from them by these disgusting new arrivals.

They complain about the language, the manners, the religion, the superstition and the ugliness of the Haredim, the Middle Eastern and Russian Jews. Give them a few drinks and the rhetoric can turn truly ugly with stories of beating the religious and mistreating immigrants. It was in this vein that Yigal Tumarkin, an artist and co-founder of the anti-war Peace Now, descended from Nazis, wrote, “when I see Orthodox Jews, I understand the Nazis” and “my true contribution would be if I grabbed a sub-machine-gun, instead of a pen and pencil, and killed them.”

Tumarkin spoke for quite a few members of the old establishment who still have their cafes, but feel like they lost their country. Though they can’t win elections for long, they control the machinery of power. And paradoxically they see themselves as underdogs still fighting the ‘Right’ and the influx of immigrants who don’t know their place and have ruined everything.

In a small country, their hateful views are no secret. It’s why they can’t win elections.

Israel’s politics are a struggle between an emerging multicultural conservative majority and a supremacist European leftist minority holding on to power. It’s a mirror image of how American liberals see our politics and yet when given a choice, they side with the European minority.

In this struggle, the media, both theirs and ours, depicts coalitions of Middle Eastern Jewish refugees, Russian immigrants, and Orthodox Jews as if they were all interchangeable “right-wing extremists” while painting a leftist fringe that consists of upper class elites who all know each other and look like each other as the liberal tolerant heroes of tomorrow.

That reveals as much about our media and political elites as it does about the Israeli Left.

Democrats and the media never actually ask why Israelis seem to insist on electing so many conservatives and few lefties, or why Netanyahu broke Ben Gurion’s record for the longest consecutive term in office. Instead, we’re told that Israelis are supremacists and bigots. It’s a convenient projection by the real supremacists and bigots who are smearing Israel.

Why did the Israeli Right win while the Left lost? For all these reasons the media won’t discuss.

Decades of Islamic terror, failed socialist politics, corrupt monopolies, an abusive bureaucracy, and outright bigotry and discrimination of the ugliest kind somehow never come up in these conversations even though the majority of Israelis are painfully acquainted with all of them.

The Left lost badly in Israel. Our Left is terrified that they’re about to lose just as badly here.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. 

Thank you for reading.


  1. Anonymous7/11/22

    This reminds me of the time, while walking with
    a lady friend, we were confronted by a snarling
    dog. I had a strong stick to fend it off, and
    directed my friend to stay behind me.

    She chose this precise time to express her
    feminism by wandering out and arguing with me.
    It did not end well, but it was educational.


  2. Anonymous8/11/22

    Leftist bigots and elitists are a class of jew-boys that never left Europe and still strive for that sort of acceptance. They are the Jewish front of the Arab opposition. They suffer from a superiority complex of Jewish chauvanism whilst driven by an undercurrent mix of self-loathing and the false promise of acceptance through the 'movement'. Israel is a serf nation to an unelected coterie of SC judges that put their noses everywhere they shouldn't. Netanyahu must reserve SC appointments to the Knesset and limit the SC purview to domestic civil matters. Terrorists, Arabs in a state of war with Israel must NOT have any standing to petition in Israeli courts. They must be dealt with by military tribunal with limited avenues of redress and limited means of legal defense. America can coddle its enemies but Israel must not. Death penalty for terrorism, subversion and civil unrest and expulsion of their facilitators. Arab must re-learn their fear and face the hard hand of their war mongering.


  3. AislaPS8/11/22

    Great writing MrG.
    Absolutely no analysis of this result in the MSM, so appreciate the background.
    And lots of parallels.
    If only you could claim Brazilian parentage or roots, then we would get some truth and parallels from all theta going on there
    And not being reported.

  4. Anonymous17/11/22

    From India...... Exactly the same in our country. The vast majority of patriotic people are labeled by the Leftist establishment as Right wing fanatics.


Post a Comment

You May Also Like