Trying to force a solution to Israel’s conflict with the Palestinian Authority and Hamas would be dangerous, Minister of Economics Naftali Bennett warned in a new interview with Arutz Sheva.
“In Oslo, they thought they had found a solution to an intractable problem… When they tried to force a solution, it led to more than 1,000 people being killed,” he said, referring to Israeli victims of PA terrorism in the years that followed the Oslo Accords.
“We have to understand that not everything has a solution. There’s a tendency towards ‘solutionizing,’ and – no. Not everything can be solved,” he stated.
“We’re in a complex neighborhood. Iran is taking over the field. There’s Syria, Lebanon and Gaza, and only Israel cuts through that Islamic crescent.
“What makes our lives here possible can be summed up in two words, ‘Be strong.’ Be economically strong, be strong in values. If we will be strong, we will survive here,” he declared.
Bennett confirmed that the government is heading toward negotiations with the PA. “Let them talk as much as they want. When they bring peace in a basket, then we’ll talk,” he said.
“We knew what government we were getting into. In the opposition we would have had no influence,” he said.
The planned negotiations will have limits meant to protect Israel, he continued, “The parameters here are that we are not paying any price just to negotiate, and that negotiations on various issues will be simultaneous. Not borders first, then recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.”
Unlike MK Danny Danon, Bennett said he believes Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu means what he has said about the “two-state solution.” Netanyahu thinks the least bad option for Israel is an unarmed PA-led Arab state alongside Israel, he explained. “He thinks there will ultimately be a solution.”
Bennett has suggested his own plan, a “calming plan” rather than a peace plan, aimed at “allowing us to live with the conflict.” Part of the plan is the annexation of Area C, the part of Judea and Samaria under Israeli control, and the granting of citizenship to the 40,000 Arabs in the area.