Kadima to join Likud in national unity gov’t. Elections off.
To remind you, Mofaz recently tabled a peace plan in which he said,
I can give a guarantee to the U.S. that at the end of the second phase the Palestinians will have most of the size of the 1967 territory, but not the exact borders because they should be based on the settlement blocs: Ma’ale Adumim, Gush Etzion, Efrat, Ariel, etc. These communities will become a defendable, eastern border for the state of Israel.
The issue of Jerusalem should be discussed in a very sensitive way. There is no chance to divide Jerusalem. It will remain united as the capital of the state of Israel and we have to find a way to handle the daily life of the Jewish and Palestinian people in Jerusalem.
Some detractors asked, Why send him a lifeline when he is dropping in the polls? So much for the idea that calling the elections paves the way for Iran. But so does this.
According to INN
The sides also agree to work together to change the current system of elections and governance in Israel. The current system will be replaced by one that enhances government stability and will make it more possible for the elected prime minister to complete his term in office.
The move came as the Knesset was preparing to disperse for early elections, which were expected to be scheduled for September 4.
Under the agreement, Kadima will join Netanyahu’s government and commit to supporting its policies through the end of its term in late 2013. Mofaz is expected to be appointed deputy prime minister, as well as minister without portfolio.
Mofaz will also serve as a member of the security cabinet, and Kadima members will serve as chairmen of the Knesset foreign affairs and defense committees, the economics committee, and any others that are agreed by both sides.
Chairperson of the Israel Labor Party, Shelly Yachimovich, will become opposition leader instead of Mofaz. The process is also likely to affect Yair Lapid’s new party, Yesh Atid – it will have to wait another year and a half for elections to the 19th Knesset.
In exchange, Netanyahu’s government will support Kadima’s proposal to replace the Tal Law, which enables ultra-Orthodox youth to defer national service.
The sides also agreed on instituting changes to Israel’s electoral system.
Yair Lapid responded to the move on Tuesday morning on his Facebook page. He described the formation of the unity government as “the old kind of politics” and “corrupt and ugly.”
“It is time to remove it from our lives,” he wrote, adding, “This is politics of chairs instead of principles… of the interests of the group instead of the whole nation. They think that now they will continue for some time, and that we will forget, but they are mistaken. This disgusting political alliance will bury all those involved.”
Shelly Yachimovich criticized the move, and calling it an alliance of cowards, and the most ridiculous zig-zag in Israel’s political history. She also said that the move represented an opportunity for the Israel Labor Party to lead the opposition.
Meretz head Zahava Gal-On expressed outrage over the surprise move, calling it a “mega-stinking maneuver by a prime minister who wants to avoid elections and a desperate opposition chairman facing a crash.”
“This is a disgrace to the Israeli parliament and a terrible message to the public, which is losing faith in the leadership of the state,” she added.
Shaul Mofaz was elected head of Kadima less than two weeks ago, when he defeated former party head Tzipi Livni in the party’s leadership primary.
In an interview with Haaretz ahead of the primary, Mofaz insisted that, if elected, he would not join a government led by Netanyahu.
“Kadima under my leadership will remain in the opposition. The current government represents all that is wrong with Israel, I believe. Why should we join it?” he said at the time.