Herzog: Netanyahu hostage to Smotrich, driven crazy by Bennett

Opposition leader says Trump envoy arrival to Israel proves Netanyahu a failure. Livni: 'Jewish Home party runs government policy.'

Mordechai Sones,

Isaac Herzog
Isaac Herzog
Hezki Baruch

Chairman of the Zionist Camp and opposition leader MK Isaac Herzog, attacked Tuesday Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and called for a "sane Zionist bloc" to beat the nationalist camp in the next Knesset election.

In the Zionist Camp faction meeting Herzog said that "US President Trump's envoy visiting the region is the clearest proof of Netanyahu's leadership failure. Over a year ago, I offered a practical proposal, a brave Regional Plan, which could lead to a dramatic bolstering of Israel's security and political situation and to breaking through the political deadlock in which we find ourselves.

"My plan has won unprecedented international backing, and has received tremendous public support. Unfortunately, Netanyahu is unable. He is a hostage to Smotrich, afraid of Elkin and Levin, and insane from Bennett," Herzog charged.

According to Herzog, the Trump administration is much shrewder than Netanyahu: "The reality is the same reality. The solution is the same solution. Our job is to set up an alternative bloc: Pragmatic, moderate, responsible, and prudent. Only the formation of a bloc that is Zionist, stately, centrist, and sane can make the connection between a strong and just state, and living in peace with itself and its neighbors.

"The bloc would consist of existing forces from the moderate center of the political spectrum. There are such within the Likud. Many in the Likud understand that Netanyahu is the problem, not the solution. I believe that the good of the country requires the establishment and consolidation of alternative forces. The good of the country is more important than any individual one of us," added the opposition chairman.

MK Tzipi Livni (Zionist Camp) said that "Greenblatt's visit to Israel is a positive sign of President Trump's seriousness about resolving the conflict. We all want a deal that benefits the people of Israel, and what's becoming clear to the new administration and what we already know - that there is only one deal that will keep Israel as a state with a Jewish majority, as a democratic and safe state - and that is separation into two nation states.

"And if the Jewish Home is planning a coup and think they will pass the annexation law only after he leaves - I have news for them, Israel is still part of the world and the media in Israel - meanwhile - is open and free - and one needn't be physically in Israel to know what's going on here."

Livni explained, "There will be no annexation by coup - and the time has already come for the government to stop allowing Jewish Home to manage its policies in every field and receive agendas from a party with 8 seats, with most people not believing in its way.

"As we hear more and more about the annexation of millions of Palestinians without rights, it must be clear from now - Israel will not be an apartheid state. Not that the world will not allow it, but that we will not allow it."