Meretz Head: Netanyahu Should Dump Bennett
Meretz chairwoman MK Zehava Galon blasted Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Tuesday for failing to reprimand Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett for his remarks against the idea of having Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria live under the Palestinian Authority (PA).
In a post on her Facebook page, Galon said that Netanyahu should get rid of Bennett and branded the Prime Minister “a coward.”
"Could it be that Netanyahu decided to run away and hide in Davos? He definitely left his spine behind there,” she said mockingly.
"It is not clear how he allows Naftali Bennett, who is playing the role of the delinquent child in the class, to go on an hysteric rant, to curse, to trash the government and mainly spit out a series of violent and repulsive statements that are more reminiscent of speakers from Hezbollah than of an Israeli minister - and all in response to Netanyahu’s spin behind which there is nothing other than feeding the group of warmongers on the extreme right,” charged Galon.
"Our Prime Minister is as cowardly as ever, weak and suffering from an acute shortage of leadership. His pathetic response this morning about Bennett, that a rebuke by Netanyahu would only present him as ‘a hero of the right’ is more than embarrassing," claimed Galon.
She further noted that "Naftali Bennett does not deserve to be a government minister and Netanyahu should get rid of him” and added that after he gets rid of Bennett, Netanyahu should “do us a favor and resign himself” since, she claimed, he is not taking the peace talks with the PA seriously.
In responding to Netanyahu’s idea, Bennett said on Sunday that it is “a very grave matter, and it reflects a panicked loss of values.”
"2,000 years of longing for the Land of Israel did not transpire so that we could live under Abu Mazen's rule,” Bennett added, noting the idea “pulls the ground out from beneath our settlement of Tel Aviv” as well.
Sources in Netanyahu's office later criticized Bennett's comments, claiming Bennett harmed Netanyahu's clever attempt to "expose" the PA's true face: its hatred of Jews, as shown by its refusal to accept a Jewish presence in areas under its control.
As expected, PA chief negotiator Saeb Erekat confirmed the PA position, responding to the reports Sunday by declaring "no settler will be allowed to stay in the Palestinian state, not even a single one."
There has been an outpouring of criticism of the idea from Netanyahu's Likud party as well, lending credence to reports of Likud "rebelliousness" against Netanyahu's apparent readiness to make extreme concessions to the PA.