When Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom proposed a televised debate ahead of the December 19, Likud leadership race, it was obvious that it wasn't going to happen.
Former Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu may have a reputation for speaking like John F. Kennedy. But he knows that he is leading the race and he does not want to take any risks.
and Yitzhak Mordechai
ganged up on him in a 1999 debate. It is no surprise that he does not want a debate where four candidates would likely gang up on him.
Netanyahu rejected debate requests from Channel 10's Yaron London
and Moti Kirschenbaum
, Channel 2's Udi Segal and Dana Weiss, Channel 1's Menashe Raz, Educational Television's Dan Margalit and Radio Radius. All the other candidates were willing.
But Netanyahu very reluctantly added his voice to a debate hosted here on the pages of The Jerusalem Post
Each of the five Likud candidates answered five identical questions:
1) Will the Likud under your leadership seek a coalition with Kadima?
2) If you win, will you try to build a bloc to run together with other parties on a joint list?
3) What separates the Likud under your leadership from Kadima on one side and the National Union on the other?
4) Would you be willing to make territorial concessions in Judea, Samaria
, the Jordan Valley or the Golan Heights in return for an agreement with the Palestinians for real peace?
5) Would you commit yourself to bringing future territorial concessions to a national referendum?
Click below for the answers:
Likud central committee member, Moshe Feiglin
Agriculture Minister Yisrael Katz
Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz
Former prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom