Several days ago, an outpost was evacuated in contravention of explicit written instructions issued by Min. Smotrich.
Prime Minister's Office Statement
The Government supports settlement but only when it is done legally and is coordinated in advance with the Prime Minister and security officials, which was not done in this case. The Prime Minister will convene a discussion on the issue early next week.
Defense Ministry Statement
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant recently spoke with IDF Chief-of-Staff Lt.-Gen. Herzi Halevi, and reaffirmed his full support for the IDF and security forces.
Every action on the ground must be conducted in accordance with the law. It must also be fully coordinated and must be taken in accordance with the relevant security situation assessment.
Commentary: *Coalition Agreements Give Netanyahu Veto Power in Judea and Samaria
Dr. Aaron Lerner 29 December 2022
Copies of the coalition agreements are available on the Knesset website:
The phrase which probably appears in the agreements with the greatest frequency in sections dealing with Judea and Samaria is "in coordination and subject to the consent of the prime minister".
Paragraph 21 of the appendix to the coalition agreement between the Likud and Religious Zionists dated December 1st essentially strips Smotrich of power: "The minister in the Ministry of Defense as per subparagraph 6.4 (hereinafter the minister) (AL: Smotrich) will receive receive full responsibility for areas of activity of Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories and the Civil Authority. The activity of the minister will be in coordination with and subject to the consent of the prime minister."
So when Binyamin Netanyahu reassured America in various interviews in English that he was in charge in Judea and Samaria he knew he already had this appendix signed.
So it is a test of how right wing Netanyahu really is.
As for applying sovereignty to Judea and Samaria, Paragraph 118 of the coalition agreement between the Likud and Religious Zionists dated December 28th states "...the prime minister will lead the development and advancement of policies within whose framework sovereignty will apply to Judea and
Samaria, while choosing the timing and weighing all of the national and international interests of the State of Israel."
In other words: Binyamin Netanyahu can opt to freeze Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria while ignoring illegal Arab construction and indefinitely postpone any application of sovereignty to any areas of Judea and Samaria.
The "explanation of the month" for such a policy is the opportunity to establish diplomatic relations with the Saudis.
The idea is that the Saudis would excuse the move as a measure to prevent Israel from annexing Judea and Samaria. But right now the "annexation threat" is a gun with dud bullets.
On the other hand, I daresay that if the Netanyahu coalition were to do a snap annexation of the Jordan Valley and perhaps other strategic areas that this would give the Saudis a substantially stronger justification to establish diplomaticrelations with the Jewish State to prevent additional annexations. Netanyahu might waht to bear that in mind.