Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in an interview with Israel National News - Arutz Sheva that if he is elected to another term as Prime Minister, he will promote the regulation and normalization of the 'young settlements' in Judea and Samaria.
"I will regulate the settlements in the first week. The time has come to settle the matter. We wanted to do it in the existing government but I couldn't because of Benny Gantz who blocked it together with Yair Lapid in the background. That's why this is the first thing I will do," Netanyahu declared.
He said; "I was in the young settlements last week and we are putting an end to this situation. Therefore, we must go out and vote, otherwise we will have Yair Lapid as prime minister together with Mansur Abbas and the Muslim Brotherhood."
Netanyahu said that he will act in a completely different manner from Defense Minister Gantz when it comes to the settlements. "I convened the supreme planning council every few weeks. We have doubled and doubled the Jewish population in Judea and Samaria under the Obama administration and under the most hostile administrations. Gantz is a leftist who says: 'A Palestinian capital in Jerusalem.' Gantz doesn't convene the supreme planning council and says that he is proud of the fact that he endangered the soldiers of the Golani Brigade for the benefit of the Palestinians. I want him to stand before to mothers whose children were harmed or, G-d forbid, killed as a result of this position."
Netanyahu said that he is worried about complacency on the right and is specifically calling on the residents of Judea and Samaria to turn out to vote for him. "We are currently in a tie, this is an emergency call for the settlements. The [residents of] settlements needs to understand what is at stake right now, the future of the Land of Israel, our entire enterprise, is on our shoulders. If they go out to vote, they can make the deciding. In the first elections, the government was decided by 1,400 votes. We are in a draw, one step away from victory and one step away from losing and there is a drop in motivation. Don't stay at home and don't come the next day when it is too late and ask: why did I stay at home? Why did I abandon my Jewish identity? Why did I abandon the Land of Israel?"
When asked why he is calling for increased support for his party specifically instead of strengthening the entire bloc, including the haredi parties and the Religious Zionism party, Netanyahu answered: "They will be in our government, a right-wing government. Lapid has a fairly obvious plan: if there is a tie or he will be the largest party, he will receive the mandate form the government and will work to dismantle our bloc. This is what he wants to do. He can't do it if the Likud is bigger. Another mandate or two for Ben-Gvir won't matter because they will be part of our government. Another mandate for Lapid will allow him to win. Today he is at 27 and the Likud is at 30. If he increases by two mandates and we decrease by two - he will get the right to form the government."
The chairman of the Likud spoke about his concern over the current government's disconnect from Israel's Jewish roots."Lapid puts on tefillin on Yom Kippur, he has no idea, he is not connected to [Judaism] and abandons it. He is submissive and falters in the face of all the pressures to establish a Palestinian state and his partner Gantz wants to establish a Palestinian capital in Jerusalem. I draw my strength from the Bible, from our roots. from my education and knowledge, from my faith, this is not an act for me or idle statements."
To the question of whether he would arrange for the appointment of a chief rabbi from the religious Zionist movement, Netanyahu replied: "I will examine the issue. I have sympathy for religious Zionism. First of all, we need to win, because if we don't win, it won't matter. You can't divide the bear's flesh before you hunt it. In Likud, by the way, there is a 'minyan' (a quorum of ten men) of religious Zionism. Every third Knesset member is from religious Zionism."
Netanyahu attacked Ayelet Shaked and calls on right-wing voters to refrain from voting for her party. "She doesn't pass in all the polls, it's as if you are taking your vote and threw it away. Worse, as if you gave it to Lapid. I remind you that those who stay at home do the same and give their vote to Lapid."