Uri Ariel: 'Israel Will Not Concede'
Housing and Construction Minister Uri Ariel (Jewish Home) sent a clear message to the US Tuesday: that Israel will not tolerate threats - economic or political - and will not give up land.
"Across the Jordan river there will be only one state, and that is the State of Israel," Ariel stated at Arutz Sheva's 11th Jerusalem conference. "All this talk of two states will not succeed and will not weaken our nation. This is a nation which has survived Pharaoh, survived hardship and will also survive this."
Ariel attacked the extreme Left for pressuring Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to sign a peace deal to "save" Israel's economy.
"Our nation is strong and will not give up land just for money," he stated.
"This pressure will pass. There are external pressures which are not logical and which don't advocate shalom (peace) based on its root word, shleimut (completion)," he added, using a Hebrew play on words to illustrate what he saw as the illusory nature of any US-brokered deal.
"I say to our dear friends overseas: be logical in your demands, and don't threaten us - not with boycotts and not with ostracisms," he continued.
"We don't have a 'partner for peace' and we don't have a nation to conduct talks with," Ariel stressed, referring to the Palestinian Arabs.
Ariel called on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to stay strong in the face of international pressures. "Do not bring us into temptation and into contempt," he stated, using a phrase found in Jewish liturgy. "[Don't cause us] to bring papers that no one can agree to. Jewish Home, headed by Naftali Bennett, will not sign any paper which means that Israel will make concessions."
US Secretary of State John Kerry's comments at the Munich Security Conference Saturday, during which he threatened Israel with international boycotts, have sparked an immense backlash from the Israeli government.
He said then, "today’s status quo absolutely, to a certainty, I promise you 100 percent, cannot be maintained. It’s not sustainable. It’s illusionary," Kerry stated. "You see for Israel there’s an increasing de-legitimization campaign that has been building up [. . .] there are talk of boycotts and other kinds of things. Are we all going to be better with all of that?"
Similar threats were echoed by EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen Monday.
"There is a risk that you will face increasing isolation [if talks fail]," Faaborg-Andersen said, in a statement to Channel 2. "Not necessarily as a result of European Union policy, but Israel has to realize that economic relations are established by private economic actors - be it consumers, be it companies - and we, as a government, has no influence on the private decisions that private citizens and companies are making."