MK Benny Gantz, chairman of the center-left Blue and White party, opened a party meeting Monday afternoon by discussing a new proposal for a unity government and emphasizing that he would not sit in a government led by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
Beginning the meeting, Gantz said: "Politics is the art of compromise, and compromise between values is the right thing to do when it serves a purpose - great purposes for the nation and the land, and not purposes which serve personal interests. I understand that some of the compromises - that we won't form our dream government - but I am not willing to form a horrific government."
"I understand that we will need to accept offers of compromise - but not a facade of compromise. In order to send an offer of compromise, there's no need for leaks, talks with people close to you, or 'closed discussions.'"
Turning to Netanyahu, Gantz said: "Yes, there are compromises in life. Blue and White won the elections, but we are willing to allow a rotation deal between us as part of a unity government. I will begin by serving for two years, during which time you can remain head of the Likud and handle your [personal] issues. I promise that we will find a position for you which befits your unique situation, one that will allow you to return if your name is cleared."
"We are facing significant security challenges: Iran is entrenching itself on our northern border, diplomatic opportunities are being offered to us, and the residents of the south are under fire. At the helm of the country there needs to be a person who can unite the country in the face of these threats - not a temporary government which lacks legitimacy and at whose head is aman who is suspected of criminal activity. Long-term strategic processes and significant diplomatic processes cannot be handled when there is a sword at your neck. These processes are not personal issues of a leader, but of the entire country."
"Our commitment to the Jordan Valley as a protective wall on Israel's eastern border is not connected to how chairs are arranged around the government's table, but to the security of the State of Israel," Gantz claimed.
Likud has offered Blue and White a deal in which Netanyahu would serve as prime minister for the first 3-4 months of a unity government, after which Gantz would serve the rest of the term. However, Gantz has claimed that Netanyahu will not keep his word and plans instead to topple the government after his turn is over - ignoring the fact that the reverse may also occur.