Leaked recordings of Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked (Yamina) speaking in a pejorative manner about the Foreign Minister, Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid), and the Defense Minister, Benny Gantz (Blue and White), have led to no small amount of embarrassment in coalition circles.
The recordings, which were broadcast on Wednesday on Channel 12, reveal something of what Shaked thinks of at least one of her key coalition partners – with her calling him “superficial,” and accusing him of “messing things up at least once a week, and then [Prime Minister] Naftali [Bennett] has to bail him out.”
On Thursday morning, Amit Segal, political commentator on Radio 103FM, alleged that, “Ayelet Shaked thinks she knows who recorded her. She’s constantly trying to persuade members of the right-wing that we have a great government, and she’s also trying to expand her ties within the government. But with all due respect to her criticisms of Lapid and Gantz, they can figure this all out in a jiffy.”
“The main issue here is her accusing Lapid of making policy errors that damage the country, every single week, ‘already three times’ as she said, and that ‘no one knows about this.’ The minimum she should now do is tell the public what she was referring to here,” Segal suggested.
Lapid might not be too happy about that, of course, and neither would Defense Minister Benny Gantz be any too pleased.
“Gantz is going to ruin everything,” Shaked can be heard saying in the recording. “He’s not even the prime minister, and he’s worse than Lapid. Much worse… I don’t know.”
While Shaked didn’t specify which foreign policy gaffes she was referring to when accusing Lapid of messing up three times, she did offer some hints: “With the Jordanians, the Americans, with the… and then Naftali comes to the rescue. Absolutely.”
She then expressed her doubts regarding the rotation deal that is supposed to see Lapid take over as prime minister halfway through the government’s term in office.
“I have no answer on that one,” Shaked said. “I have no idea what will happen. We’ll just have to wait another two years and see. It depends on whether there’s a crisis or not. We’ll see.”
Responding to the revelations, Foreign Minister Lapid’s office issued a statement saying: “We spoke, we sorted things out, and Lapid said, ‘Sometimes people get angry, but we don’t have to make a big deal out of every little thing.’”
As for Shaked, her office responded that, “These words were spoken in a private conversation in the heat of the moment, following briefings that were publicized against the Minister [Shaked]. Minister Shaked regrets the words spoken and hopes that nobody was hurt by them.”