Does Ehud Barak want to play politics again?

Recent meetings with political factions seem to indicate a possible return to Knesset for the former PM.

July 12, 2015 12:43
1 minute read.
Ehud Barak



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The comeback of Ehud Barak into the political sphere seems to be moving from innocuous rumors to a firm possibility.

The former prime minister (Labor party), who most recently held the posts of defense minister and deputy prime minister in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's second government from 2009-2013, is slowly but surely turning himself back into a political player. His first appearance in this returning role was at last month's Herzliya Conference, in which he criticized the current cabinet for falling prey to a victim mentality. He then urged the government to "take our destiny in our hands."

Notably, Barak also recently held meetings with Labor Knesset members and other political bodies.

The meetings that seem to be the biggest indicator of his potential return are the recent ones between him and MK Stav Shaffir (Labor). Shaffir confirmed these meetings, claiming, that they were mainly security related. It has been said that Barak views Shappir not only as his protege, but as a keen ally in the event that he decides to reenter the political game.

It is important to note that conditions of his return are still unknown, as Isaac Herzog, the current elected chairman of the Labor party, has made it clear that he has no intention of going anywhere regardless of Barak's aspirations.

If Barak does in fact run, he can expect to face even more competition, as both MK Shelly Yacimovich and Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai are said to be strong contenders for Labor party chairman in the next primary election.

Former prime minister Barak is a highly decorated IDF veteran, having served in several battles and combat missions. He served as IDF chief of General Staff from 1991-1995. He also holds degrees in Physics, Mathematics and Economics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and Stanford University.

Since his retirement from politics in 2013, Barak has virtually disappeared from the public's eye. 

Herb Keinon contributed to this report.

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