Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is caught between ultra-Orthodox Jews and the reality of growing disgust within Israel for those who want the government to care for them without being willing to care for the state of Israel. An alliance between Yair Lapid, leader of the Yesh Atid party and Naftali Bennett, of the far right HaYeudi party is blocking his efforts to form a government. Bennett and Lapid want an end to exemptions for ultra-Orthodox males from military service and subsidies so they can study the Torah and have plenty of babies.
Looming in the background is President Obama’s visit to Israel this month. He will expect proof from Bibi of a desire for genuine peace with Palestinians. Netanyahu is caught between the proverbial rock and hard place.