Shaul Mofaz's rapid about-face, from harsh critic of Netanyahu to his coalition partner, is not the first 180-degree turn of his political career.
Unfortunately for Mofaz, the record is replete with statements the former defense minister would live to regret. Who can forget Mofaz's forceful assertion in 2005 on the eve of the establishment of the Kadima party, that "you don't leave your home," regarding whether he planned to defect from the Likud. Shortly afterward, Mofaz abandoned the Likud and joined Ariel Sharon's new party.
On repeated occasions, Mofaz has insisted that he would not join Netanyahu's government. Only last month he said, "we are the only alternative to the government, there are no other candidates for prime minister. Netanyahu's failure is resounding, he has lost his governing legitimacy."
"Listen to me carefully," he wrote on his Facebook page on March 3, "I will not enter a Netanyahu government, not today, not tomorrow, and not after I become chairman of Kadima on March 28. This is an evil, failed and uncaring government. Kadima, with me at its helm, will replace it in elections. Is that clear?"
At a meeting of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on Jan. 17, Mofaz hurled the word "liar" at Netanyahu no fewer than 12 times and caused an uproar when he claimed that the Prime Minister's Office had distorted his words. "Netanyahu committed a despicable deed. He will not be able to fix this lie," Mofaz said.
On Monday, at a press conference at his office in the Knesset, Mofaz attacked Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yachimovich for saying she had no objection to joining Netanyahu's coalition. "Recently, Yachimovich has decided to join Netanyahu's shady operation. This is the price the Labor party would be willing to pay to become dead wood in a Netanyahu government," he said at the time.
Mofaz is not the only Kadima member to flip-flop over the last two days. The top story on the Kadima website quoted Mofaz saying, "There aren't and won't be negotiations for entry into the government. Over the course of the morning, website staff were quick to change the headline and update it in accordance with developments."