- Israel has been donating vaccines to friendly nations.
- Israel and Syria reached an agreement on exchange of prisoners.
- Netanyahu is still short of forming a government.
Israel a small nation of no more than 10 million people in a world of much larger nations considers diplomacy of utmost importance to its existence. It is faced with a crisis concerning relations with its neighboring states Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria about the future of a Palestinian state. It has also danger from Iran who is interested in being the major power in the Middle East when it will complete its project to make nuclear weapons. The world is seeking a peaceful solution to the Middle East crisis, stabilization of the region. America has interest in maintaining peaceful relations with Israel and in stabilization of the region.
A young Israeli girl accidently wandered into Syrian territory and was taken captive by Syrian authorities. Efforts were made by Israel for her release through negotiations by Russia. Prime Minister Putin helped to negotiate her release. The girl was freed to come home to Israel by a Russian brokered prisoner swap. Israel released two Syrian shepherds arrested two weeks ago for the return of the girl. This event is an example of the potential for peace in the Middle East even between two nations who are today enemies Israel and Syria.
Israel under the leadership of Netanyahu acquired vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna enough to vaccinate the entire population. Already over 4,000,000 Israelis have been vaccinated. As a result infections have declined, hospitalizations and deaths. Israel took a leadership role in experimentation of the new vaccine with an emergency FDA approval.
So far, Israel is able to give the world positive feedback about the use of the vaccine in its country to be an example for other nations. Netanyahu began to offer vaccines to other nations aligned with Israel such as Honduras. In the middle of the attempt to use vaccines as a way to improve its relations with these nations, the Attorney General asked Netanyahu to stop using vaccines as bribery.
Benny Gantz the opponent partner to Netanyahu in the government objected to making vaccines a weapon of Israel diplomacy. Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Thursday called a halt to the plans of Netanyahu to use their surplus of vaccines to give away without consent from the Knesset. In the meantime, Bernie Sanders America Jewish politician attacked Israel for offering spare vaccines to its allies instead of sharing them with the Palestinians. Under the terms of the Oslo accords the Palestinian Authority are responsible for the healthcare of its own population.
This week was the first time since the American elections that Netanyahu spoke with President Joe Biden. There were many opinions for the delay between the two leaders of nations to converse. Finally Biden called Netanyahu. He insured Netanyahu that America will continue its support for Israel. They discussed their strategies in calming the Corona Pandemic in their nations and other matters of security.
Netanyahu spoke this week with Nancy Pelosi California democrat leader of the House of Representatives to reaffirm the unbreakable bond between the two countries. United State Secretary of State Anthony Blinken spoke to Israel Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi to reaffirm their stand on the importance of the two-state solution for normalization of the region. He also affirmed the desire of America to eliminate the hatred what he called disproportionate focus to Israel from the Geneva forum.
A Purim Eve poll shows the Likud bloc has nearly enough seats for a government 56 seats. Likud is the largest party at 27 seats. Yesh Atid on the left central side has 18 seats. New Hope party break off from Likud has 13 seats. Yamina Zionist religious party has 11 seats. There is enough to make a right-side government but both New Hope and Yamina are not committed even agains having Netanyahu as Prime Minister. Blue White the party of Benny Gantz has fallen in the polls. Who will be the next Prime Minister is unknown.