Bennett to Al-Jazeera: 'We'll hunt down every Hamas commander, every post, until we win'

MK Naftali Bennett, Yamina chairman, speaks to Al Jazeera about the rocket fire and retaliatory strikes on Gaza, and about Israeli politics.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

MK Naftali Bennett, who heads the Knesset's Yamina party, spoke with Al Jazeera about the political situation in Israel and the recent rocket fire on Israeli civilians.

"It's up to Hamas" whether the situation gets better, Bennett said. "As long as Hamas keeps its deliberate attack in order to murder Israelis across the state - by the way, Arabs and Jews alike; Hamas already murdered two Arab Israelis in Lod, a dad, 52 years old, and his daughter Nadin, 16 years old, Israeli Arabs who were murdered. A Holocaust survivor, 85 years old, was murdered by Hamas, in her wheelchair."

"If Hamas thinks they can get away with this, they're wrong. We'll hunt down every commander, every post, until we win."

When asked about the 53 people who died in Gaza due to Israeli airstrikes, Bennett clarified: "Indeed Hamas killed them. Because when you hide your rockets behind women and children, you are effectively murdering your own people."

"We will defend ourselves," he emphasized. "And if Hamas decides to turn schools into terror bases, and hospitals, in a cowardly manner, into terror bases, they are responsible for murdering their own people."

Adding that blaming Israel for the lack of bomb shelters in Gaza is "nonsense," Bennett explained, "Hamas instead of taking its money and investing in hospitals, in schools, in building a future for its people, it's spending all its money on terror, on trying to kill Israelis. It's stupid and wrong."

"We are all united, we stand strong united. And there's one way for this to stop: For Hamas to lay down its arms, and then - it'll stop."

Regarding the coalition negotiations and their influence on the security situation, Bennett told Al Jazeera: "This is not about [Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin] Netanyahu, and it's not about left and right in Israel, and I will certainly back Netanyahu and [Defense] Minister [Benny] Gantz (Blue and White) and the government of Israel at this very difficult moment. When we get hundreds of rockets a night on Israel, we all stand united. No one will divide us and we'll fight back."

"We're a democracy, I'm darn proud of that that we're a democracy, and yes part of democracy is the ability to criticize one another. but we in Israel have a sort of an unspoken rule: When we're at war with an enemy that wants to annihilate us, we stand together," Bennett said.

Regarding whether he would act differently regarding the two-state solution, he emphasized that the lack of a country for the "Palestinian" Arabs is "not the root cause" of this. "The root cause is a decision of the terrorists that whatever happens, they want to destroy Israel."

"We gave Hamas everything, unfortunately...They control - and if they decide that they want to start governing and stop being a failed terror state which is a miserable future for their own people, they'll find a peaceful neighbor. But if they continue this, it's just going to get worse.

"And I'm telling every commander, every soldier of Hamas: We're after you. We're coming after you. We're not going to let [you] off. So you might as well stop shooting at Israel."

What would change with the creation of a "Palestinian" state, Bennett explained, is that "it would create a terror state that does not exist yet in Judea and Samaria and would effectively deem Israel unable to defend ourselves. The whole width of Israel is just about seven or eight miles."

"We see what they turned Gaza into. No Israeli is going to give up Judea and Samaria and allow them to create a terror state that's just a few minutes away from my home. Would you?"



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