Israelis return from their New Year (Rosh Hashana) celebrations to find their politicians pleading, yet again, for extra time in order to form a new government. Many voters would think a yellow card for time wasting would be more appropriate.

Israel has been in electioneering mode for most of this year. An inconclusive general election on April 9th brought on another inconclusive election on September 17th. Add to that the complication of the long-serving outgoing prime minister Bibi Netanyahu facing indictment on corruption on three counts.

Preliminary hearings on the indictments have begun this week. Mr Netanyahu needs to stay in some sort of office to keep claiming judicial immunity. Out of office for 100 days, he has to face the likelihood of going to trial.