Analysis: Netanyahu's Pyrrhic victory

All the deal did was switch one group of journalists in the unemployment line with another.

March 31, 2017 06:01
1 minute read.
PM Netanyahu

PM Netanyahu. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


As US President Donald Trump has boasted, nothing feels better than reaching a successful deal.

So when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon reached an agreement Thursday ending a two-week-old political crisis and avoiding elections, why weren’t they celebrating? Why did Netanyahu not call a press conference, and why did Kahlon deliver apologies and excuses at his press conference, and then leave without taking a single question? Perhaps because they realized the public could not care less about public broadcasting that barely anyone watches.

All the deal did was switch one group of journalists in the unemployment line with another.

Veteran journalist Geula Even-Sa’ar, who is married to Netanyahu’s former No. 2 in the Likud, Gideon Sa’ar, will continue anchoring her 7 p.m. program rather than the nightly news an hour later. If Netanyahu’s goal was to prevent her from reading the news, all he accomplished was to bring her home to her children an hour earlier.

So when counting the winners and losers in the battle over public broadcasting, the only clear winners are three-year- old David and four-month- old Shira Sa’ar.

Netanyahu and Kahlon both technically won, but they emerged so scarred by the affair that it was hardly worthwhile for them. Netanyahu’s popularity fell, his trip to China was sabotaged, and his obsession with the media made him look worse than ever. Kahlon, who was portrayed on the satire show Eretz Nehederet as “growing a spine,” hunched himself over in the press conference as if Netanyahu had crushed it.

Besides the Public Broadcasting Corporation workers who lost their jobs, the losers include Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who initiated the corporation, and Attorney- General Avichai Mandelblit, who was weakened by giving his stamp of approval to a deal that looked so bad.

But the biggest loser was Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid. He may be helped by having a relatively clean image, but a week after scoring a fawning interview in Politico under the headline, “The Man Who Would Beat Bibi,” Lapid apparently will have to wait a long time for the next general election.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

June 20, 2019
Timeless, Vulcain to produce 100 unique watches honoring Jerusalem


Cookie Settings