It was a long time coming, but just before midnight on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, Binyamin Netanyahu became Prime Minister of Israel for the second time. Mr. Prime Minister, please prove to Israel, the Jewish people and the world that the wait was worthwhile.
You started off well, in your addresss to the Knesset Tuesday night, when you concluded your remarks with these words:
"From this podium in Jerusalem, which is our eternal capital, I am uttering a prayer to God, to bless that the work of our hands will be blessed, and that the unity with which we started on our way will be a good sign... that will ensure our future."
It is a siman tov, a good sign, when any leader of Israel or the Jewish people recognizes that the success of his efforts relies on the blessing of God. Recognition of the importance of achdut, unity of the Jewish people, also is important.
Mazal tov and yasher ko-ach, Mr. Prime Minister, congratulations and well done. In your leadership of Israel, may you go m'chial l'chial, from strength to strength.
In closing, I note that for the 32nd consecutive time since its declaration of independence in May 1948, Israel has undergone a peaceful transition into power of an democratically elected government. In addition to stable democratic government, Israel boasts a vibrant economy (althouh it endures the current recession with the rest of the world)and has achieved a Western-European level standard of living for its citizens. Its Arab minority enjoys more civil liberties, better educational opportunities and a higher standard of living than the citizens of any Arab nation. What other nation created after the Second World War can point to such a record? Shame on those who would somehow suggest it is a failed state.