Gershom Gorenberg makes an interesting case that the occupation
was actually what led to the split between Netanyahu and Kadima:
"Ostensibly, the problem was conscription. Kadima wanted to impose
financial penalties on ultra-Orthodox men who defer the draft for
religious studies past age 22. The two ultra-Orthodox parties in
parliament utterly rejected the plan, and Netanyahu's Likud proposed a
much-softened version of the reform. Kadima's view is politically
popular, and Kadima has nearly twice as many Knesset members as the
ultra Orthodox parties combined. Sticking with Kadima would seem the
"But Kadima is a party of reconstructed rightists. It consists mainly of
ex-members of Netanyahu's Likud who have concluded that Israel will have
to give up most of the West Bank. The ultra-Orthodox parties, on the
other hand, have consistently supported the Likud's policies as long as
they receive the concessions they want, including the draft exemption.
Netanyahu could count on them now to be disinterested in peacemaking. As
long as he did not break the decades-old deal with them, he can count
on them to line up with him in parliament after the next election, too."
I actually think this is right. I can't picture Netanyahu as that wedded to the idea that Torah study is the Haredi's form of service, and that would suggest this was about maintaining his preferred political alliance for the reasons suggested.
Labels: Israel, Palestine