Run, Olmert, run!

Olmert is being pressed by almost all the refugees from Kadima, who see in him a life preserver to prevent the party from sinking.

October 11, 2012 21:12
3 minute read.
Ehud Olmert rejoices following court verdict

Ehud Olmert rejoices following court verdict 370. (photo credit: Emile Solomon/ Haaretz)


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He is torn. The dilemma Ehud Olmert is facing is agonizing and difficult. Yes, he wants to return. Yes, it tickles him, not letting him rest. He thinks he was a good prime minister, he believes he could be even better, if only they would let him.

He looks at the directions his replacement is taking the country and it nauseates him. He has a strong desire to correct things, he has a stubborn strain resistant to any drug or vaccine, and the adrenalin flowing through the veins of all who were once in power. Were, and want to return.

This strain was what made Binyamin Netanyahu return for a second term, and it boosted Ehud Barak’s desire (which we have to pray will never come about) to try again too.

This is what turns the average Israeli politician into a species that is never endangered, a creature that will never disappear.

Olmert will make a decision on his return within a week, perhaps 10 days, maybe earlier. He has to investigate countless things before deciding. He needs to settle his legal matters, get solid, unequivocal opinions that he faces no legal obstacles to run. He has to check out his chances in a real in-depth survey, with all possible scenarios considered.

He does not want to crash; he has crashed enough. And then he has to produce a platform. Should he run with Kadima? And if so, with what line-up? A lot of work awaits Olmert in the coming days before he makes the decision, unless someone convinces him not to throw his hat in the ring.

After all, there is no shortage of self-righteous, hypocritical and sanctimonious people in the political world and the media, who abhor the idea of Olmert’s return to politics.

For them, Olmert is corrupt, and that’s that. Barak and Netanyahu are clean, knights of the quality of government and the law. Olmert’s return would harm their sensitive souls and contaminate their sterile environment.

Olmert is under a lot of pressure. He is being pressed by almost all the refugees from Kadima, who see in him a life preserver to prevent the party from sinking.

He is being pressed by those who have left the defense apparatus and see what is being done by Barak and Netanyahu (especially Barak) to the IDF and to Israel’s deterrence.

He is being pressed by businessmen and economists.

The heads of these important sectors, elite security men and top financiers, are big fans of Olmert.

The only piece that’s missing now from the puzzle is the public itself. This is what he is checking. He is checking whether, if Shaul Mofaz moves two places down on Kadima’s candidates list, Tzipi Livni rejoins the party and former IDF chief Gabi Ashkenazi joins, and he (Olmert) leads Kadima, they will present a real threat to a Netanyahu-led coalition.

The right question in any survey is what happens if Olmert returns to Kadima with Livni and the support of former security chiefs (Ashkenazi, Yuval Diskin and Meir Dagan).

Two senior and reliable pollsters whom I talked to believe that such a move would be an electoral coup. Their opinions are based on real data.

I allow myself to add here my humble personal voice, and ask you, Olmert, to return to politics.

Run Olmert, run! Why? Because there is no other time.

Because you cannot wait. Run Olmert, because it seems to me that only you can provide an alternative to the current regime.

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