BNEI BRAK, Israel — A recent wave of terrorist attacks in Israel, the deadliest in seven years, has presented a stark challenge to Israel’s fragile coalition government, which has come under criticism from both ends of the political spectrum for policies that critics claim have compounded the risk of violence.
On the right, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has been criticized for including an Arab party within the coalition, a decision that right-wing critics say has dampened the state’s willingness to police Israel’s Arab minority and limited its ability to respond to the recent attacks, two of which were carried out by Arab citizens of Israel.
On the left, Mr. Bennett has been criticized for making small concessions to the Palestinians while ruling out peace talks or any moves toward the formation of a Palestinian state — an approach that left-wing critics say has increased Palestinian despair, encouraging a minority to respond with violence.
Mr. Bennett is also constrained in his options in responding to the violence by the composition of his ideologically diverse coalition, an eight-party alliance that includes right-wingers like Mr. Bennett, centrists, leftists and a small Arab Islamist party, Raam — the first independent Arab party to join an Israeli government. Ten months into their tenure, the alliance has consistently found ways of circumnavigating their differences, but the violence has accentuated the gaps in their worldviews.
A senior lawmaker quit Mr. Bennett’s coalition last month, leaving it without a majority in Parliament and auguring a return to the political instability that has hobbled the country in recent years.