Blue and White: White House Invite Timed for Netanyahu’s Benefit

YERUSHALAYIM -
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz meet at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem as Israeli president Reuven Rivlin hosts over 40 world leaders as part of the World Holocaust Forum, on January 22, 2020. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

Neither the solemnities of the Holocaust forum nor the excitement over the imminent publication of the Trump peace plan could still the ferocious, at-each-others-throats behavior of the Israeli election campaign.

The Blue and White party charged on Thursday evening that the timing of the invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu‏‏ and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz to the White House was deliberately calculated to derail the Knesset review of the PM’s request for immunity from prosecution.

“The goal is obviously to cancel the plenum or remove the spotlight from the plenum,” a Blue and White source said, according to The Jerusalem Post.

But, they said, they were determined to proceed in any case.

“We are moving forward normally,” a Blue and White source said. “These are two separate processes that we will respect.”

Because Gantz has also accepted Vice President Pence’s invitation to go to Washington (made at Netanyahu’s suggestion), the two could pair off on a vote to convene the committee handling the immunity issue.

The opposition is said to be confident that the House Committee will reject the immunity request. Asked if it would be proper to act against the prime minister while he’s on such an important mission abroad, the source said: “We are not doing an act against the prime minister. It would be nice if the prime minister came, but he is not needed.”

Subsequently, seeking to squelch such imputations, President Donald Trump tweeted: “The United States looks forward to welcoming Prime Minister Netanyahu & Blue & White Chairman Gantz to the White House next week. Reports about details and timing of our closely-held peace plan are purely speculative.”