Girls evicted from Gush Katif
Girls evicted from Gush KatifFlash 90

Jewish Home Chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett spoke Monday at a conference marking a decade since the expulsion of Jews from the Katif Bloc in Gaza, which was dubbed by the government as “The Disengagement.”

The conference was held by the Israel Democracy Institute, in cooperation with Makor Rishon.

“The purpose of the Disengagement and Oslo was to bring about the collapse of religious Zionism,” Bennett said. “The purpose of the Disengagement was the death of the settlement enterprise and the destruction of the Right.”

"Who today remembers Yelena Bosinova, who set herself on fire in protest of the Disengagement? We were made to forget this case. The Disengagement was the media's Yom Kippur [a reference to the Yom Kippur War, viewed as a prime example of a great failure by a body to do its duty – ed.].”

Ever since the Disengagement, Bennett said, he has been asking himself how to prevent the next Disengagement. "There is a process, in Israel, of a changing of elites,” he explained. “A process has begun, in which the old elites are desperately hanging on to the corners of the altar.”

The changing of elites

"There is one thing that was never discussed,” he recalled: “What do we need the Disengagement for? They skipped that question – the most important of all questions.”

"We are in the midst of a change,” Bennett told the audience. “Voices that were once silenced are heard. The new media, which knows how to circumvent the editors and reflect the nation's true spirit, without censorship, contributed a lot to this.”

Bennett criticized the legal elite, as he called it, which approved the Disengagement without considering the human rights of the Jews who were expelled. “A legal system that made a mockery of the term 'human rights' and made clear that human rights, too, are a matter of geography.”

"We are in the midst of processes,” he repeated. “The Justice Minister came from the new elite, and that, too, is a result of the Disengagement. We are in a process in which sanity is being brought back to culture, as well, and the truth needs to be said – we are still in the range of danger.”

"The danger is in the political establishment; the danger is the next Disengagement. It happened, it can happen again, it will come as a surprise. The next Disengagement can happen at any moment if we let go of the country's steering wheel for a moment. If we turn our head for one moment.”

"We also learned from the Disengagement that running away from the territory of our land can come from parties identified with the national camp. The Disengagement was not carried out by Meretz, or by (Labor leader Yitzhak) Buji Herzog. The Disengagement was carried out by the Likud. Whoever believes that a nation cannot be a conqueror in its own land, will never be able to carry out a Disengagement.”

"The people who carried out the Disengagement wanted us to retreat from the Golan, as well,” Bennett emphasized. “These are the same people. Had we listened to them then, too, ISIS members would now be dipping their feet in the Sea of Galilee, and it would be red with blood.”