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'King Bibi': Israel's master of brinkmanship

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) delivers a speech next to his wife Sara as he reacts to exit poll figures in parliamentary elections late on March 17, 2015 in Tel AvivSome love him, others loathe him but there is one thing they all agree on: Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu, who won a shock victory in Tuesday’s election, is a master of political brinkmanship. Ahead of the vote, which was widely seen as a referendum on his six-year tenure as prime minister, the polls showed his rightwing Likud trailing the centre-left Zionist Union by up to four seats. “This amazing achievement is mainly a personal one for Netanyahu,” wrote Yossi Verter in an editorial in the left-leaning Haaretz daily, describing the burly 65-year-old leader as “resurrected”. After beginning his campaign with a series of videos poking fun at the media frenzy over allegations about his and his wife Sara’s lifestyle, he transformed himself into a prophet of doom, warning of the dangers which awaited an Israel that voted in his centre-left rival.

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