'Bennett Didn't Initiate Tunnel Operation'

Science Minister Yaakov Perry (Yesh Atid) says Naftali Bennett's claim constitutes 'massive inaccuracy.'

Ido Ben Porat, Gil Ronen ,

Science, Technology, and Space Minister Yaako
Science, Technology, and Space Minister Yaako
Flash 90

Minister of Science Yaakov Perry (Yesh Atid), who participated in some of the Security Cabinet discussions in the course of Operation Protective Edge, said Wednesday morning that Economics Minister Naftali Bennett did not initiate the ground operation against Hamas's terror tunnels.

"I am not saying that Minister Bennett was not an element that pushed for this,” he told IDF Radio. “But to say that one minister or another is the one who led to this or that operation, would constitute massive inaccuracy.”

After Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon accused him of using information he obtained improperly to attack him in the Security Cabinet, Bennett insisted that he had received the information in his frequent tours of the war zone.

“From the start of Brothers' Keeper, and in the course of Protective Edge, I went to the field every two days and spoke with dozens of commanders, officers,” Bennett said.

Bennett said flat out that he was the one who initiated the operation against Hamas's terror tunnels, and that the prime minister and defense minister had not treated the tunnel threat seriously.

“I do not think that there was intentional concealment here,” he explained. “There was a preconception that Hamas does not want to use the tunnels and therefore, when I pushed for the operation, someone blocked it.”

"I definitely think that when I first floated the matter, it was treated dismissively, and were it not for going down into the field, the diplomatic echelon would not have been aware of it,” Bennett said. “I will be glad to sort matters out so everyone can see who identified the threat and who dismissed it."