NetanyahuShulo Shalom/TPS

Opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the Knesset plenum during a special session in memory of former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin Monday.

"Year after year there are those who use Rabin's assassination to attack my camp and him. For 26 years I heard it in ceremonies and gritted my teeth but fulfilled my duty as prime minister. When I came they asked why I came and when I did not come they asked why I did not come. There are opposition leaders here who have boycotted other days of remembrance and are not being talked about," Netanyahu said.

"Is Lapid talking about statehood? He refrained from supporting the Abraham Accords. I voted while in Rabin's opposition in favor of peace with Jordan," he noted.

Netanyahu added that "Rabin signed the Oslo Accords on the assumption that Arafat and the PLO would abandon their commitment to the destruction of Israel and fight terrorism uncompromisingly. This did not happen. I thought this required us not only to reconsider these agreements but also to act for what I believed in for many years: we will achieve peace with many other Arab states not through Ramallah, but through the 'bypassing the Ramallah' axis. I have always believed that if peace with Arab states depends on the consent of the Palestinians, there will never be peace. They will not come at all. So why wait, why grant them a veto and why put peace in their hands?"

He said, "The Oslo Accords have demonstrated that lasting peace cannot be achieved on the basis of hope alone - and certainly not on the basis of false hope. I have always believed that peace is made with enemies - but only with those who decide to stop being enemies. You don't make a sham peace with those who use a peace agreement to improve their positions for the continuation of the struggle against Israel. In this context, I repeat: there is no such thing as 'victims of peace'. There are 'victims of terrorism'. Terrorism is terrorism and peace is peace."

The head of the opposition claimed that his words since the murder had been distorted. "The controversy with the government's position at the time was substantial, strong and acute - because it dealt with crucial issues for our existence and our future. But also in the heat of the debate I said over and over again, on every stage - and it is documented: We said, "Rabin is not a traitor. He is wrong, but he is not a traitor." Above the Knesset podium, a month before the assassination, I said unequivocally: "This phenomenon of calling Israeli leaders" murderers "and" traitors "- Rabin murderer, Begin murderer, Shamir murderer, Sharon murderer - these are things that have always been wrong, and we condemn it everywhere." I added: "What we must all do together is to stand up against these phenomena and against any attempt to tarnish the public sitting here with the stains of that small and extreme handful."

"This is the truth," Netanyahu declared, "and any other lie that is repeated over and over again will not become true. There is one side that everything he says and does, including the most extreme expressions (including the presentation of ropes for hanging people, and guillotines and contempt of state symbols), is 'democracy' 'statesmanship', 'Freedom of Expression.'

"There is another side - we - that even when we express positions that represent the majority of the Israeli public - legitimate positions - no ropes for hanging people and no guillotines and no contempt of state symbols - it is already labeled as 'incitement', ''hate speech', division ',' splitting ',' vulgarity '. "Now there is also a new addition: 'lack of statesmanship'," he concluded.