Opposition MKs rip Netanyahu as 'inept' leader, harmful to Israel's security

Netanyahu over the past week has made a number of moves that have put his image in the sights of the opposition, starting with a transportation fiasco and ending with a rebuke from the US.

By
September 10, 2016 12:26
2 minute read.
Netanyahu and Livni

Netanyahu and Livni. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later



Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was slammed as "inept and clumsy", and was accused of "harming Israel's security" by a number of opposition Knesset members early Saturday morning.

Speaking at a cultural event before a small audience in the Tel Aviv suburb of Rishon LeZion, Zionist Union MK Itzik Shmuli launched the opening salvo against the premier, ripping him for his handling of a train crisis that left thousands of commuters experiencing long delays on Sunday. 

"For infrastructure work to be carried out on the Shabbat is an overall normal occurrence, which only points how clumsy and inept the prime minister handled the situation," the MK said.

What was mishandled, according to Shmuli, was Netanyahu's acquiescence to his ultra-Orthodox coalition partners who demanded that train work not be conducted on the Sabbath.

Threatening to dismantle the government if the condition was not met, Netanyahu agreed and pushed the infrastructure work back behind schedule, drawing criticism for putting politics before the citizens of Israel. 

"When the moment of truth came, Netanyahu gave into the ultra-Orthodox parties, which created complete chaos for commuters, instead of making the public interest his priority," Shmuli added.

Following the episode, Netanyahu declared the crisis regarding work by Israel Railways on Shabbat to be over, after the High Court of Justice on Tuesday issued an interim order permitting the work to continue, and stating that any order to the contrary is invalid.

Meanwhile, Shumli's colleague in the Zionist Union party, MK Tzipi Livni, also chastised the prime minister, this time taking issue with comments he made in a video posted to Facebook Friday evening before the start of Shabbat.

In the two-minute clip, Netanyahu said the Palestinians wanted to form a state devoid of a Jewish population and termed it "ethnic cleansing", drawing sharp criticism from the United States.


"With this one video, designed either for the ears of Likudniks or (American) Republicans, Netanyahu is helping destroy all the achievements made by (former prime minister Ariel) Sharon," the MK said during a parallel cultural event held in Holon.

Following the clip's release, US State Department spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau said at a briefing in Washington that the Israeli leader's words were "inappropriate and unhelpful."

"We obviously strongly disagree with the characterization that those who oppose settlement activity or view it as an obstacle to peace are somehow calling for ethnic cleansing of Jews from the West Bank. We believe that using that type of terminology is inappropriate and unhelpful," she said.

Livni added that Netanyahu's continued collisions with the United States would bring an "end of the right of return" for Jews to Israel and the destruction of our "separation fence."

"When the people of Israel wake up and want to be separated from the Palestinians, it will be too late," Livni said, adding "Netanyahu harms our security."

Reuters and Yonah Jeremy Bob contributed to this article.






 

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Hispan TV logo
April 22, 2019
Google blocks Iranian accounts claiming Israel experiments on Palestinians

By JTA