Danny Danon (do not publish again).
(photo credit: Flash 90)
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has not set a date to deliver an anticipated,
dramatic address to the world and his diplomatic plans haven’t yet been
finalized, but his opponents on the Right have already started taking
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The entire Likud faction and thousands of Likud central committee
members received a phone call Sunday informing them that they would soon hear
Netanyahu’s big speech. But the speech they heard was one from a year ago when
he told residents of Ariel that he would soon start building there and that the
city would remain in Israeli hands in any diplomatic deal.
was sponsored by the Council of Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria, which
also compiled quotes from 20 Likud MKs calling for renewed construction in West
Bank cities. The quotes were published in ads in newspapers in Israel and will
soon reach newspapers in the United States.
“We feel Netanyahu shouldn’t
be left alone to fight this battle internationally,” council director-general
Naftali Bennett said.
“President Obama has proven that he lives in
Lalaland with his whole approach to the Middle East. He paved the way for
engaging with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. This is the guy we should trust
to secure Israel? Netanyahu should remember that Israelis voted for him because
they thought he could say no to Obama. They don’t want him caving in to a
president who clearly knows nothing about the Middle East.”
canceled Sunday’s Likud ministerial meeting, where he was expected to be
attacked from the Right, and he has not convened his seven-member inner security
cabinet for several weeks. Ministers among the seven have complained in private
conversations that Netanyahu was deciding key issues with only one minister:
Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Monday’s Likud faction meeting will be the
first opportunity for his opponents on the Right to confront him since he told
the faction last week that he needed to be focusing on maintaining the current
construction rather than issuing new permits.
MK Danny Danon intends to
ask him at the meeting when he will give the key speech and warn him that the
Likud central committee could be convened to stop him.
“If it walks like
a leftist diplomatic plan and it talks like a leftist diplomatic plan, it
certainly isn’t a duck,” Danon said. “We won’t let him get away with it, just
like we didn’t let him get away with extending the freeze.”
Union head Ya’acov Katz blasted Shas chairman Eli Yishai on Sunday for
threatening a coalition crisis over the Finance Ministry preventing the
advancement of a bill that would help young couples obtain discounted mortgages.
Katz said what was really harming young couples was the lack of construction in
Judea and Samaria and that Yishai should leave the coalition to protest
Meanwhile, opposition leader Tzipi Livni attacked Netanyahu from the
Left, saying that Netanyahu was displaying a lack of leadership by considering
delivering a diplomatic speech only so the American administration would not be
mad at Israel.
“Israel’s standing in the world will not be decided by a
speech, even in the most fluent English in Congress or on CNN,” Livni told
students at a high school in Mevaseret Zion. “Netanyahu is merely looking for
what he could say that could satisfy both Obama and Lieberman without
considering what is right for our people. His rightwing government is begging to
enter negotiations on worse terms than we had when we held talks.”