According to reports from the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, 17 Adar-II, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Education Minister Naftali Bennett got into a harsh exchange of words. PM Netanyahu took offense to comments released by Bennett against him for his public condemnation of the soldier who shot a wounded terrorist dead in Hebron on Purim.
Bennett and colleagues in his party called on elected officials to come out publically in support of the soldier until the probe into the shooting death shows he acted inappropriately.
The Prime Minister reportedly scorned Bennett, telling him “Don’t you dare lecture me about backing IDF soldiers. The animosity between Mr. Netanyahu and Bennett is a known reality and it usually does not take too much for him to lash out at Bennett is the conditions permit.
Following the release of the B’Tselem video showing the soldier shooting the terrorist who was on the ground but at the cabinet meeting, Mr. Netanyahu told the press “Any challenge to the morality of the IDF is outrageous and unacceptable. The soldiers of the IDF, our children, maintain high ethical values while courageously fighting against bloodthirsty murderers under difficult operational conditions. I am certain that in all cases, as in the current one, the inquiry takes into account all conditions. We must all support the IDF Chief of Staff, the IDF and our soldiers, who safeguard our security.”
Joining PM Netanyahu in attacking Bennett were Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri, who criticized Bennett for his remarks.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)