Yair Lapid
Yair Lapidצילום: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

The opposition leader Yair Lapid linked the report on the imposition of sanctions by the United States on the Netzach Yehuda battalion to the political leaders.

"The American sanctions on the Netzach Yehuda battalion are a mistake and we must act to cancel them", wrote Lapid in response to the report, adding that "the source of the problem is not in the military but in the political leadership."

Lapid explained: "The world understands and knows that Minister Ben-Gvir is not interested in the police enforcing the law in Judea and Samaria and Minister Smotrich does not oppose Jewish terrorism and the violent acts of extreme settlers."

"The result", according to Lapid, "is a severe damage to the status of Israel as a state of law and a further severe erosion in our international standing. IDF soldiers and commanders are the first to be harmed by its forsaken policy and its political failure of the government."

But online, they quickly reminded Lapid that the event that caused a storm in the United States regarding 'Netzach Yehuda' is the death of the elderly Palestinian who was arrested by the battalion in Judea and Samaria - which occurred during the Bennett-Lapid government unrelated to the Netanyahu government and the ministers Smotrich and Ben-Gvir whom he blamed in response today.

The journalist Avishay Greenzeig pointed out that contrary to what Lapid implies, "investigation and prosecution against soldiers, including against Netzach Yehuda, are not under the police's authority (Ben-Gvir's jurisdiction) and certainly not of the Civil Administration (partial authority of Smotrich) but of the Military Police and the Military Prosecution which are under the authority of the Minister of Defense Galant."

"Besides that", Greenzeig added, "the event that aggravated the Americans is the death of an elderly Palestinian arrested by Netzach Yehuda, and indeed, the event occurred in January 2022, somewhere during the reign of the Bennett-Lapid government."

Dr. Rafael (Rafi) Biton responded to Lapid: "This message is a disgrace. Lapid knows that if there is suspicion of an offense in the Netzach Yehuda battalion, the investigating body is not the Israel Police, but the Military Police which are not under Ben-Gvir. And he knows that Military Investigation is directed by the Chief Military Prosecutor who is guided by the Attorney General without any possibility of political intervention."