Thousands Protest, Urge Netanyahu To Call Early Election

( – In October 2023, Hamas terrorists launched a coordinated attack on Israel, killing around 1,200 people and starting a war. Israel responded by targeting the group in the Gaza Strip, killing at least 32,800 people and counting. Protesters around the world have been calling for the end of the war, and some want new leadership in Israel.

On March 31, tens of thousands of Israeli citizens hit the streets in Jerusalem to urge Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to agree to a cease-fire so that the hostages in Gaza can come home. They also want an early election in the country to replace Netanyahu — he’s not up for re-election until 2026. While much of the country is still in favor of bringing down Hamas, the protestors are concerned about the safety of the 136 Israeli hostages still in the hands of terrorists. They don’t believe Netanyahu is doing enough to bring them home, with some saying he is “only working on his private interests.”

But the war itself and hostage negotiations aren’t the only reasons the protesters are demanding a new prime minister. Some believe Netanyahu weakened the country because of the corruption charges he’s currently facing in the courts, leaving Israel vulnerable to an attack. His critics say the PM is more worried about his own political career than his country. Some also think Netanyahu has damaged Israel’s relationship with the United States. Others are upset about ultra-Orthodox Jewish seminary students’ exemption from military service — everyone else in Israel must serve.

The prime minister responded to the call for an early election, stating that holding such an event in the middle of a war would be bad for Israel. Netanyahu claimed the country is on the precipice of a victory and having an election now would paralyze the country for up to eight months, halting all hostage negotiations. Sheli Shem Tov, whose son was kidnapped on Oct 7, agreed with the PM, stating she doesn’t think an election now will bring her boy home.

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