Netanyahu is a curious paradox of dubious repute, while nonetheless remaining, according to polling data, widely admired by the Israeli public. He demands to be regarded as the saviour of Israel while continuing to engage in excesses of personal extravagance, diminishing his reputation and trustworthiness, both in Israel and the US.
A recent report by Israel’s state comptroller shows that Netanyahu and his wife spent lavishly on a variety of personal goods and services between 2009 and 2012. This excessive spending while in office has created some outrage in Israel. The comptroller’s recent report revealed that Netanyahu and his wife Sara spent $68,000 in personal grooming expenses – more than $100 a day. There is also the expense of maintenance for two official residences. One of the residences is Netanyahu’s private oceanside villa in Caesarea, though the villa is mostly unoccupied by the couple. The cost for maintenance, including new furnishings, reached nearly $1 million a year for both.
Food and hosting expenses reached $125,000 in 2011 – double the expenses of Netanyahu’s predecessor. There was an additional $20,000 paid for “takeout meals”, despite paying a salary for an in-house chef.
And then there is “Bottlegate”. Sara Netanyahu ordered the return of bottles carrying deposits, bought for the household and paid for by the state, be returned for the deposits, and pocketed the money. She did return $1,000 in deposit refunds to the state, but is said to have kept nearly $6,000 in bottle deposit money.
– Read more: The Netanyahu Coup against an American President – Morgan Strong, Middle East Eye