How Netanyahu made Putin the new hero of Israel

For a week already, Israel has been actively discussing the features of the election campaign of incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party. Bibi went so far as to hang out a giant poster in Tel Aviv, on which he was captured together with Vladimir Putin. On the banner there is a funny inscription: “In another league”, implying that the prime minister of the Jewish state is a member of the club of the most influential people in the modern world. In the photo, the leaders shake hands, and their faces show that they are serious people, but are glad to meet. Nicely.


What does this mean? Everyone agrees that with such a trick the current government is trying to get as many votes as possible from Russian-speaking Israelis, and there are from 1.5 to 2 million of those. In the April elections, Netanyahu managed to enlist the support of only 150,000 people from the former Union. Not bad, but far from Avigdor Lieberman, who had already relied on Russian speakers for a long time. But there is also Benny Ganz, who lately is more confidently focusing on the religious electorate, and among our former fellow citizens there are enough of them. Looks like it’s time to move on to decisive action.


Immediately after the appearance of the poster at Likud’s headquarters, several versions of why Netanyahu showed Putin his potential voters appeared on the Internet and in the press. The first is that in Israel there are enough people who are nostalgic for their homeland and for this reason they somehow subconsciously sympathize with Vladimir Putin. Another version refers to the same inscription “in a different league.” Some experts have put forward the version that Putin is not sympathetic. In fact, they simply fear him. The fact that Netanyahu communicates with this “terrible person” on equal terms delights them. This is where the main calculation is made.


As our and Syrian troops approach, Erdogan’s army retreats.

However, after this, the same experts began to argue that Bibi would hardly achieve anything with such methods. Most likely, he will only lose his voice. Like, the Russian-speaking citizens of Israel to Putin are not just with fear. He is completely unpleasant for them, and this dislike has manifested itself especially since the beginning of the Ukrainian crisis. Many ended up on the Promised Land after moving from the Ukrainian SSR or from independent Ukraine. They are unhappy with the way the Kremlin acted with their former homeland. It is logical that they will not vote for Netanyahu because of his closeness to Putin. There were even small protests in Tel Aviv near the same building with a sensational poster.


However, be that as it may, the Israeli prime minister has achieved something. A huge photo with the President of the Russian Federation became a phenomenon on the Internet and in the press, attracted a lot of attention. So Putin became the hero of social networks in Israel. It’s funny.


We managed to communicate with some Russian-speaking Israeli Internet users. Not everyone is negative about Putin. Again, a lot depends on the age category. Most of the older people are well disposed towards president and to Russia as a whole. As mentioned above, there is a factor of nostalgia for a more defunct homeland. And here Putin is not so important as good relations with the Russian Federation and the ability to maintain constant and good relations with relatives who have remained here. With young people, things are different – there are many different opinions. Often there is not even an adequate justification for dislike or sympathy for Russia. These people are already much further from the environment so familiar to us. For the most part, it is alien to them, and for them completely different ideas about politics are valuable. In general, a rebellious spirit is felt.


Russian political scientist and orientalist Karine Gevorgyan believes that Benjamin Netanyahu could have several reasons for making such posters.


  • Yes, of course, he is looking for support among all Israeli voters, including among Russian speakers. It just so happened that for the most part local Russian-speaking people are pro-Ukrainian. There are enough reasons for this, the key is propaganda. But, I think, because of this poster, a different effect may occur. Netanyahu shows the Israelis this as well as a message to the Palestinians. Like, the latter should understand that they have no chance of making significant progress in promoting their interests through Moscow. And all because Russia is friends with Israel and so on. I think there will be a response. It is also important that in addition to Putin in Tel Aviv there is a poster with Donald Trump.


– That’s right, only the image of Trump was used on the eve of the April elections. And Putin was hung out just now.


– Well, I decided to complement the image. This is a demonstration of their influence. The Israeli prime minister has excellent relations with both. Consequently, he can attract both to ensure the security of the Jewish state. Both the Russian Federation and the United States are present in the Middle East and have some influence in the region. So everything is logical here. It’s not Xi Jingping to show him.


– Not Xi Jinping, but Narendra Modi. There is a banner with his photo.


– Yes, there seems to be a different meaning. India has excellent relations, and cooperation with it has a beneficial effect on the Israeli economy.


– That is, this message is not just to the Russian-speaking, but to all voters?


  • Yes, absolutely right.