Netanyahu is a supporter of one party: himself


I have known Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer since 1972. I have watched him grow from being a state assemblyman to one of the most powerful political leaders in the United States. Schumer is a serious and smart lawmaker, and he measures his every word with the greatest of caution. When he speaks, it is well planned, because he is conscious of the fact that the press will hold him accountable for his actions.

Schumer’s recent call for new elections in Israel, and for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to step down, was a do-or-die plea for peace in the Middle East. I have heard some of my friends call Schumer out for that plea, and describe it as dangerous, or even as a form of terrorism, and I have tried to tell them to consider all the facts before they speak.

Netanyahu has been playing political games for as long as I can remember. He is not some well-meaning leader of a country who is being picked on. To begin with, Bibi, as he is often called, has been in and out of courtrooms in Israel for two years. He has been charged with various forms of corruption. In Israel, cases like his can drag on for years with no resolution.

For the past two years, Bibi has been hopeful that if he can change the way the courts work, his case will be dismissed. He has pushed for a change in the law that would give the country’s legislature, the Knesset, the power to run the courts and end any kind of judicial interference. His efforts to undermine the judicial system have split the country in half and have given rise to massive demonstrations calling for his ouster. To stay in power, he has forged alliances with right-wing leaders who have their own plans to change Israel from a democracy to a banana republic.

Schumer’s speech calling for new elections in another country may have stepped over the line, but his claims that Bibi is no longer the nation’s true leader, and has lost the confidence of the people, are 100 percent correct. As a congressional leader, Schumer has every right to speak out on Israel’s political challenges, because America sends billions of dollars to Israel each year and is Israel’s strongest supporter.

If your best friend thinks you have lost your way, he or she has every right to tell you so, out of love, and not any other motive. Schumer has been Israel’s most loyal member of Congress, and has fought off other members who have questioned the need to provide so much aid to other countries.

Israel had every right to invade Gaza after Hamas’s attack on Oct. 7, one of the most brutal assaults on any nation. The conduct of Hamas will go down in history as another Holocaust, and there had to be a response to such vicious conduct. Israel responded with an all-out war against a cruel and undisciplined mob that kills and steals from its own people.

The United States has asked Bibi what his plans are for Gaza when the war is over and Hamas has been defeated, and he has no answer. As long as he stays in power, he can avoid having to face the possibility of going to prison. He has a plan, but it focuses on holding on to his job, even if his country no longer trusts him to be its leader. In the interim, he will try to hold on to power by playing partisan politics.

It’s no secret that Netanyahu has always embraced the American Republican Party. He worked against President Barack Obama, and came to Washington to promote Donald Trump on a number of occasions. He has every intention of holding on to his power in the hope that Trump will be elected again this year.

Bibi will do whatever it takes to keep his job. Schumer spoke out forcefully for one reason, which was to keep Israel a democracy. The world needs Israel to survive, and there is no question that under Netanyahu’s control, its very existence is threatened.

Jerry Kremer was an Assemblyman for 23 years, and chaired the Assembly’s Ways and Means Committee for 12 years. He now heads Empire Government Strategies, a business development and legislative strategy firm. Comments about this column?