Israel’s Gideon Saar challenges lengthy Netanyahu Likud rule
JERUSALEM (AP) — Gideon Saar has done what no Israeli politician from the ruling conservative party has done in more than a decade — openly challenge its chief, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
And he did it with a simple, two-word tweet: “I’m ready.”
The brazen move against the long-serving Israeli leader has solidly positioned the 52-year-old Saar as the Likud party’s leading candidate to replace Netanyahu, who is fighting for his survival amid a pending corruption indictment and post-election political paralysis.
Saar has long been considered a rising star in Likud and one of the lone independent voices in a party that has, in general, blindly followed its leader.
But that’s changed. Netanyahu failed in two elections this year to capture a parliamentary majority, and now faces the possibility of a criminal indictment.