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BACK TO POLITICS: Bennett Slams Netanyahu, Says Are “Several Options” For Forming Gov’t

Now that Operation Guardian of the Walls has ended, it’s back to the perpetual political stalemate in Israel and Yamina leader Naftali Bennett used the opportunity to excoriate Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and other politicians in a Facebook post on Sunday.

“During the fighting, I refrained from speaking out against the government and sharing advice during interviews and on Facebook while the soldiers and police endangered their lives on the ground. Hamas and critics of Israel in the West had an empty playing field for propaganda, and I did my best to contribute, if only slightly, on this front.

“At the end of the fighting, when it’s clear that it’s over but not complete and that the fronts are still not quiet – not in Gaza, not in Jerusalem, or inside Israel, I want to share with you the way I see things.

“I can’t remember such a period of weakness, lack of function and national embarrassment. But there’s nothing to be surprised about – the writing was on the wall. For a whole year, during the pandemic, we cried out against a government that simply didn’t function – not in crisis management nor education.

“The same symptoms that we preferred to suppress and forget: Netanyahu appoints mediocre people, who in turn appoint mediocre people, crooked decision-making, dictated by personal and political considerations. And all this amid creating a smokescreen of personality worship for the leader, while anyone who dares to criticize him is lambasted.

“In recent weeks and days, no citizen has not felt distressed by the state of the country.
Terrorists shooting at residents of Lod, Akko, Be’er Sheva and the Galil. Humiliated policemen on Har Habayis. Hamas victory celebrations in Gaza and inside Israeli cities.
Even Netanyahu’s most ardent supporters are beginning to understand that admiring the leader at all costs is not a substitute for policy, that their personal security and their family’s personal security have deteriorated to an unbearable level, that the state’s deterrence – in the face of a group of terrorists in Gaza and armed gangs inside Israel – is at the lowest point in history.

“In the government sit ministers who are busy day and night with politics, fleeing during times of difficulty. All power, with zero responsibility, including after the disaster in Meron. It is a government that is busy day and night with self-congratulations and blaming failures on the people they themselves appointed. The logic that guides the government is to postpone the treatment of the problem, any problem, until the moment it explodes.

“That’s how it’s been pushed off, year after year – dealing with the increased strength of
Hamas and Hezbollah, which have turned from terrorist organizations into real armies, with a rocket array of 150,000 weapons aimed at every city in Israel. It is no coincidence that our enemies are raising their heads right now. Our inner division and self-destruction weaken us. When the enemy recognizes a weakness, it attacks.

“We are after two and a half years of endless and purposeless elections. Even at this moment, there is no budget for the State of Israel (!) This is not the time to insist on boycotts, this is the time to do what is required and form a functioning government.
There are two choices – doing what is needed or worsening the crisis. Whoever drags the country to fifth elections, to more poison and hatred, to another year of state dysfunction, to a huge waste of money – plays into the hands of those who want our harm. That would be one mistake too many.

“Even today, there are several options for forming a government, if we just get rid of the boycotts and understand the significance of the time. The politicians won’t come to their senses until the citizens force them. Now is the time to build and repair, not to deepen the rift.”

It’s widely thought that Bennett is referring to New Hope leader Gideon Sa’ar as “those who are dragging us to fifth elections” since he has adamantly refused to join a government headed by Netanyahu.

Currently, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid holds the mandate to form a government until its expiration date on June 2. However, Bennett backed out of negotiations with Lapid during Operation Guardian of the Walls and the anti-Netanyahu bloc currently lacks enough mandates to form a government.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)

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