Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with Likud ministers on Tuesday evening, following Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi’s statement against reservists who threatened not to show up for training due to the judicial reform.
"Refusal is a dangerous phenomenon and should be strongly opposed. But even when doing so, and even in the heat of the moment, it should be done within the limits of the pertinent discourse. The task of all of us is to try to calm the spirits and not inflame them, and this applies to everyone without exception," said Netanyahu.
Before that, Economy Minister Nir Barkat spoke on the issue as well and said, "The reservists are the salt of the earth, the best we have to offer and the people thanks to whom the existence of the Jewish people in the State of Israel is possible. I salute them."
"There is no room for any statement against the reservists who risk their lives for Israel's security while making an enormous sacrifice. At the same time, there is no room for any refusal. Even in the heat of the political controversy, we must remember that we do not have another IDF," Barkat said.
Karhi on Monday issued a strongly-worded rebuke to the IDF reservists who threatened not to report for duty in protest against the government's planned judicial reforms.
“And Mordechai would not kneel nor bow down," Karhi wrote in a Twitter post to mark the start of the Purim holiday, quoting the Book of Esther. “There are times when one must stand firm against the hegemony.”
“To those refusing to serve, we say to them what Mordechai told Esther: ‘Profit and salvation will arise for the Jews from another place, and your father’s house will be destroyed,'" he wrote. "The people of Israel will manage without you and you can go to hell.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi, and Reserve Forces Corps commander Benny Ben Ari held a discussion with soldiers and officers in the IDF reserves.
The meeting, which was held in the Defense Minister's office in the Kirya, was attended by commanders and soldiers from the IDF reserves from all branches of the service, including the naval, intelligence, air, and land forces.
During the meeting, Gallant criticized Karhi over his remarks, saying, "I intend to protect all reservists, even those whose opinions are the opposite of mine. Those who disparage IDF soldiers, from the left or the right, have no place in public service. I cherish, appreciate and support the reservists, regardless of their political position."