The Government and Politics of Israel

By Don Peretz; Gideon Doron | Go to book overview

8
Second Transition of Power

The first transition of power occurred in 1977 when Likud took control of the government from Labor; the second took place in 1992 when Labor regained political domination. Several factors contributed to the second transition, including the social realignment of certain groups, economic conditions, a change in society's value systems, and external events--including three wars. The quality of leadership and effective campaign strategies were also conducive to political change.


Stabilizing the First Transition of Power

Likud's victory over the Labor alignment in the 1977 election marked the beginning of a new era. At first, many observers believed Begin's victory was an aberration in the country's politics caused by the intrusion of the DMC, which had been formed a few months before the Ninth Knesset election from a diverse coalition of political figures who were disenchanted with both Labor and Likud. Many former Labor supporters voted for the DMC or joined its leadership. Thus, it was argued that if the DMC were co-opted into Begin's coalition cabinet or if it disintegrated after outliving its usefulness, the alignment would again capture the votes of those who had defected to the DMC in protest over thirty years of entrenched Labor rule.

During the 1977 campaign, Likud blamed Labor for the national economic plight. Its leaders argued that inflation was the number-one enemy of the people and promised to reduce it from 30 percent to 15 percent within a year. Within five years, Likud said, it would raise the GNP at least 40 percent by encouraging investment, reducing the adverse trade balance, ending bureaucratic interference, and abolishing currency controls. Both state and

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The Government and Politics of Israel
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Tables and Figures ix
  • Preface xi
  • 1- Historical Origins of Israel 1
  • 2- Political Culture 46
  • 3- Political Parties and Ideologies 70
  • 4- The Electoral System 118
  • 5- Interest Groups 146
  • 6- How the Government Works 173
  • 7- Government Administration And Public Policy 208
  • 8- Second Transition of Power 244
  • 9- Challenges of The Israeli Polity 275
  • About the Book and Authors 291
  • Index 292
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