As the Palestinian Authority prepares to ask the United Nations General Assembly
to declare a Palestinian state unilaterally, a pressure campaign will begin
Wednesday asking Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to unilaterally annex the
West Bank.RELATED:Opinion: Our World - Israel’s only two optionsDanon: If Palestinians act unilaterally, so will we
The campaign is the brainchild of Likud MK Danny Danon, who
has sponsored a bill that would begin the process of making all of Judea and
Samaria part of the sovereign state of Israel. The campaign will begin on
Facebook, spread to top Israeli websites, and perhaps after that to the
“The campaign will call for the Israeli government to respond to
the Palestinians’ unilateral step by taking a Zionist unilateral action of
annexing the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria,” Danon said.
Likud legislator said the campaign was intended to remind the public and the
government that many major decisions by Israel were taken unilaterally,
including declaring the state by former prime minister David Ben-Gurion,
annexing eastern Jerusalem by former prime minister Levi Eshkol and the
annexation of the Golan Heights by former prime minister Menachem
He neglected to mention former prime minister Ariel Sharon’s
unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip.
Support for such a move is
growing as the Palestinians’ September 20 initiative comes closer. More than
half the Likud faction has endorsed the idea, including ministers Gilad Erdan,
Yisrael Katz, Moshe Kahlon, and Yuli Edelstein.
Vice Premier Moshe
Ya’alon has also spoken about Israel taking unilateral actions without being
specific. Outside the Likud, Israel Beiteinu minister Uzi Landau and Habayit
Hayehudi’s minister Daniel Hershkowitz have endorsed the move.
Minister’s Office doesn’t comment on the issue, but it helps Netanyahu to show
that there are possible internal actions for Israel and political risks for the
Palestinians,” Danon said. “The Palestinians need to know that they have a lot
to lose by taking a unilateral approach.”
Danon said that if the
Palestinians move ahead with the declaration of a state, he would ask to
expedite the legislative process. Government support would likely be necessary
to pass such controversial legislation.
Peace Now secretary-general Yariv
Openheimer said he was confident the coalition would not take what he called a
Openheimer said such threats would only encourage the
Palestinian Authority to take unilateral steps and the nations of the world to
support the moves of the Palestinians.