'Time for Israel to present its own vision'

Jewish Home chairman says Israel needs to initiate its own vision instead of the two-state solution.

Uzi Baruch,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Jewish Home chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Saturday night called for Israel to present a new vision for the region that does not include a “two-state solution”.

His comments came a day after U.S. national security adviser H.R. McMaster said that during his upcoming visit to Israel, President Donald Trump “will express his desire for dignity and self-determination for the Palestinians", which appeared to hint that Trump would back a two-state solution.

“We can no longer operate a ‘bunker policy’,” Bennett said on Saturday night. "Israel must initiate and present its own vision. Otherwise, as it once again appears, its fate will be determined by others. The Bar-Ilan speech was made during President Obama's term. The speech and the agreement to establish Palestine brought about boycotts, terrorism and a serious demographic threat, and now is the time to announce its cancellation."

"There are two methods before us: A continuation of the Bar-Ilan policy that advocates the establishment of a second Palestinian state, in addition to that in Gaza. That is a failed messianic formula that until now has led to bloodshed, political deterioration and will bring about a demographic disaster,” he continued.

“Alternatively,” Bennett said, “The State of Israel can establish its own vision for the future of the region: Regional economic development based on entrepreneurship, the prevention of a second Palestinian state in addition to that in Gaza, the imposition of sovereignty over the Israeli territories in Judea and Samaria, the stabilization of the Gaza Strip and the strengthening of the State of Israel as a security, intelligence and economic anchor in the region. It's time to initiate. Our future is in our hands.”

Likud responds: Bennett should stop preaching
The Likud responded to Bennett’s remarks and said, "Bennett's remarks are an example of a false self-flagellation, this time coming from the right. The boycotts of Israel stem from the very opposition to a Jewish state and nothing else. Prime Minister Netanyahu is the one who is fighting for the acceptance of the Jewish state in the world, as we hear from President Trump.”

“He who sends Jewish students to prostrate themselves in mosques, who hires an extreme leftist to be responsible for civics studies and does not lift a finger in order to deal with the incitement in schools in eastern Jerusalem, should not preach to us. He who cannot withstand the pressure from the left in the Education Ministry, which he heads, should not preach to Prime Minister Netanyahu, who stands firm and determined in the face of all the international pressures more than any other Prime Minister in recent decades.”

“The self-flagellation policy of the right has never achieved anything but toppling the rule of the right and bringing about the rule of the left,” said the Likud.