MK Boaz Bismuth (Likud), in a conversation with Arutz Sheva-Israel National News, criticized the US sanctions on Israeli citizens accused of violence against Palestinian Arabs and called out the use of the term "settler violence."
At the beginning of the interview, MK Bismuth emphasized the importance of Israel's friendship with the United States: "We are very grateful to the United States, for the support that they give us since the beginning of the war, more than 300 planes have come, which is important, as well as for the veto at the UN. You must understand one thing, in Israel we share the same values and the same interests. But sometimes we don't see priorities the same way, yet we share the same views. And I also think we share the same friends and enemies. Our American friends should understand one thing we are not a war against Hamas, we are at war with an axis of evil. That same axis, be it Iran or the Houthis, isn't that friendly with America, and America should remember that. We will win this war, not only for us but for the free world and for America."
Regarding the US sanctions on Israelis, he says that the US should respect Israel's judicial system. He added that when he was at the Council of Europe last week, he saw a report from after October 7th which along with condemning the Hamas massacre there was a point about violence in Judea and Samaria and "settler violence." Bismuth says he was amazed to see that a report about October 7th discusses violence by Israeli citizens. He added that he fears that the concept was born in Israel, noting that he was in Knesset committees where members of the opposition spoke about it.
According to Bismuth, the term "settler violence" comes from a need to "make a balance between violence on the other side and violence in Israel." He proclaims: "No, in this specific war the bad one is Hamas, the bad one is Iran, the bad one is Hezbollah, we are the good ones. So let's not invent 'violence of settlers' in order to try to make a certain balance."
He adds: "I'll be honest, maybe there's one or two cases, but it's not a pattern, that people are trying to call 'violence of settlers' maybe it's violence of 'a' settler. 99.9% of our settlers are heroes, and they are now fighting in Gaza, fighting for my life, fighting for my children, for my future, for my country. Go tell the kids studying in Eli who lost 16 of their boys, about violence of settlers."
MK Bismuth was also asked about UNRWA, to which he answered that the reason that countries suspended funding to the organization is that it "portrays itself as an agency that aids poor Palestinian refugees, but the IDF proved that at least 12 of them participated in the massacre. So what are we dealing with? It's not an agency for helping, it's a terrorist group, so it should not function or act, not in Gaza, in Israel, or any other country in the world."
He says that a different body that is not "terror-oriented" must be found to oversee the humanitarian aid. He added that he thinks his government must do much more to fight UNRWA and close the organization.
However, he says he is "not waiting for the government to decide, on Sunday the ministerial committee for the laws is going to speak about my bill whose aim is to close the UNRWA offices in our eternal capital, which is Jerusalem. You must agree that an agency that was created to maintain the idea that the Palestinian refugees participated in the October 7th massacre, is helping Hamas in Gaza, and is educating children to hate Israel, how come such an office functions in my capital? This is a disgrace for us, it has to be closed."