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European Pressphoto Agency

Later this year, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to become Israel’s longest-serving prime minister in its 71-year existence. To reach that mark, both he and his right-wing Likud party will need a strong showing in elections April 9.

Polls show that Netanyahu, who was prime minister for three years in the 1990s and has held the office since 2009, is locked in a close race with former general Benny Gantz and the opposition Blue and White alliance. 

But Netanyahu isn’t just fighting for his political life, he’s also fighting for his freedom. That’s because Israel’s attorney general has said he plans to indict Netanyahu on criminal charges stemming from three separate corruption investigations after the election. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, an in-depth look at the political legacy one of Israel’s most influential and polarizing leaders, and his prospects in a tight campaign.  


AP Photo

Fifty years ago this week, Israelis were riding high. In just six days, the Jewish state’s army had won a stunning victory over the combined militaries of Egypt, Syria and Jordan. Israel more than tripled in size, winning control of the West Bank, the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and the Sinai peninsula.

But a half century later, the legacy of that war looks decidedly different. This month’s celebrations in Israel were muted, not least because its military continues to occupy the West Bank and guard over 3 million stateless and impoverished Palestinians.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the mixed legacy of the Jewish state's greatest military victory.


AP

It’s said that truth is often the first casualty in war. And for media in the Palestinian territories–where conflict has been the norm for more than six decades– giving the public an accurate picture of the news is a huge challenge.

In Gaza, where Hamas rules, Palestinian journalists must toe the line or face consequences. In the West Bank, governed by the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, reporters can face criminal charges for covering corruption or criticizing officials.

Meanwhile Israeli forces have become increasingly aggressive towards Palestinian journalists, sometimes placing them in indefinite "administrative detention" without trial.


Israeli Ground Operation In Gaza Continues

Jul 18, 2014

This post was updated at 6:15 p.m. ET:

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will travel to the Middle East on Saturday in hopes of finding a way to stop the fighting between Israel and Hamas.

"Israel has legitimate security concerns, and we condemn the indiscriminate rocket fire from Gaza into Israel that ended yesterday's temporary cease-fire," Jeffrey Feltman, deputy U.N. secretary-general for political affairs, told the Security Council on Friday. "But we are alarmed by Israel's heavy response."