There are several topics people choose to avoid discussing in public spaces, or even among close friends and acquaintances. For starters, people tend to avoid speaking about the bowel movements they underwent that day because it is both disgusting and in no way something that should be discussed among colleagues. Next up, we have conversations surrounding religion and whether one is for or against, as well as which religion makes the most sense.

From a very young age, it was heavily suggested to me never question a person about their religion in conversation because it was something meant to remain private. I never quite understood this because organized religion is anything but subtle, but I digress. Then, we have the most diametric, polarizing topic in the business. If you want the most contentious conversation starter in the world with the gusto of Rachmaninoff’s “Piano Concerto No. 3,” then might I suggest for your conversing pleasure the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

For those of you who’ve managed to keep your heads buried in the sand but have now recently decided to submerge into society, allow me to get you up to snuff. Seventy-one years ago, in 1948, the Jewish state of Israel was brought into existence. After centuries of persecution, and the horrific events of the Holocaust, Jews fleeing persecution in Europe wanted to establish a national homeland to be safe and happy, and naturally their ancestral homeland seemed like a solid choice.

Starting in 1896, hundreds of thousands of Jews journeyed to what was then British-controlled Palestine. Long story that continues to this day, short, Israel was founded, and the some-700,000 Palestinian civilians were forced out of their homes, thus creating what we’ve all come to know and avoid discussing: the Israel-Palestine Conflict.

Now that you’re all caught up, I feel it is now appropriate to discuss Israel’s latest news. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, or as the kids say “Bibi,” is facing several indictment charges relating to bribery and breach of trust-related offenses following three separate corruption investigations.

While I could rant about how politicians are the first on my list to assume foul play is occurring, I’ll avoid that rabbit hole. The announcement of Bibi’s indictment comes months before Israel’s general election, where he is up for reelection after four terms in office. 

According to several sources, Netanyahu’s key opponent in the upcoming elections, former military Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, has called for Bibi’s resignation ahead of the April general election. 

“Because of the circumstances which have arisen, sitting in a future government with Benjamin Netanyahu is not something which is on the table. Benjamin Netanyahu — I turn to you this evening. Get over yourself and show national responsibility. Resign from your position. If you prove that you are innocent, you can return to the public realm and again lead your movement.”

Benny Gantz, former military Chief of Staff

One of the first cases being brought against Netanyahu is referred to as Case 1000 which seeks to charge Bibi with breach of trust. According to Israeli Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, Case 1000 suggest that Netanyahu received illegal gifts from suspicious overseas characters totaling approximately $280,000, “including cigars, champagne, jewelry and more.” Mandelblit says that exchanges occurred between 2007 and 2016, and in exchange for these gifts, Netanyahu told his “friends” he would give them illegal tax breaks. 

I find it slightly ironic that Benjamin Netanyahu would be indicted at the same time that situations are heating up over in America with President Donald Trump and special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Trump and Netanyahu are quite good friends, and the ill-timed  backlash from their alleged actions may put a damper on their spring break plans. 

“It is regrettable that the pressures of the left and the media apparently caused the attorney general to hasten to announce a hearing before the elections, while the truth will be published..only after the hearings. I am sorry that the attorney general rejected my  request to confront the states’ witnesses  and my lawyers’ request to investigate dozens of witnessed and prove my innocence…”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

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