Likud Beytenu has no intention to negotiate with the Palestinian Authority for a
two-state solution, Tzipi Livni said on Monday at Bar-Ilan University, where in
2009 Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu became the first Likud leader to agree to
a Palestinian state.
“Netanyahu did not want to say those words, and
refused to say them before the last election,” Livni said. “Those are the words
he had to say after the election because of international pressure, the words he
refused to make a reality over the nearly four years that passed since
Livni referred to reports that Likud Beytenu would not include a
Palestinian state in its platform, saying Netanyahu’s 2009 speech was just a
shield he held up on his travels around the world in which he said Israel sought
“Today, the whole world knows that this speech was just lip
service, a mask of moderation on an extremist face,” she said.
platform has never recognized a Palestinian state, and Yisrael Beytenu’s current
platform says the idea of a Palestinian state is meant to camouflage the
Palestinians’ goal to destroy Israel. The joint list has yet to publicize its
platform ahead of the January 22 election, as the Likud campaign pointed out in
response to Livni’s speech.
Livni spoke out against politicians who make
election promises and then act differently, saying Israelis should demand they
tell the truth.
“The Bar-Ilan speech was spin and a trick, and now we see
the reality, which isn’t spin, of extremism washing over Likud-Beytenu and
Netanyahu’s partners,” she said. “This election should not be about words but
Netanyahu buried the Bar-Ilan speech, and I will revive
Livni said she believed in a two-state solution from the
time she entered politics, adding that diplomatic issues are what led her to
return to the political arena after taking a break earlier this year.
a Bar-Ilan graduate, Livni said she found it important to discuss peace talks in
a place that teaches Jewish values, because an agreement is the only way to keep
Israel a Jewish State.
“Anyone who thinks a twostate solution means we’re
doing a favor for [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud] Abbas, [US President
Barack] Obama or [US secretary of state-designate] John Kerry is totally wrong.
It’s the only way to continue the Zionist vision of a Jewish national home,” she
According to Livni, refusing to talk peace would turn Israel
into a binational or Arab state because there is an Arab-Palestinian majority
between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.
She also criticized
Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett, saying he was the same as Netanyahu and
that any argument between them will have been conjured up for their election
“It’s very comfortable for Netanyahu to get in front of the
cameras and criticize Bennett for talking about refusing orders – and he’s
right, refusing orders goes against our values – but it’s less comfortable for
him to face his party,” she said.
“[Likud-Beytenu candidate Moshe]
Feiglin criticized Bennett for taking back what he said because Feiglin thinks
refusing orders is the right thing to do. [Likud- Beytenu candidates Tzipi]
Hotovely and [Uzi] Landau are the same, and Netanyahu will have to keep living
with them and pay ideological lip service to them.”
The Tzipi Livni Party
leader explained that the shift rightward was the reason she left the Likud with
former prime minister Ariel Sharon, and accused Netanyahu of not following the
path of the Likud’s founding leader, Menachem Begin, who emphasized the rule of
“Judges, not rabbis. Law not halacha [Jewish law],” she
Livni also appealed to national-religious voters, saying that
as a group they had great values but the extremists among them “who fight to
keep every inch of the Land of Israel” and “give a monopoly on Jewish values to
haredi parties” will lead Israel to cease to be a Jewish state.
Jewish people have a historical right to every inch of Israel, but to keep the
country Jewish, we need to give some of it up,” she stated.
Likud-Beytenu campaign stated in response to Livni’s speech that it was
“amazing” how quickly she “once again defends the Palestinians.”
needs to be deaf in order to not hear, blind to not see what is happening in
Gaza and the countries in the region, and still insist on rushing to the
diplomatic abyss,” the statement added.
“All that’s left is to wait and
see when Livni will admit her blindness, which endangers Israel. Should Hamas
take over Judea and Samaria, too, and shoot at us from there?”