Meretz MK: Bennett Knows That If He Goes to Military Confrontation, Gov’t Will Fall

YERUSHALAYIM -
An IDF soldier cleans the cannon of an artillery unit on the Israeli side of the border with Lebanon, Friday. (Reuters/Ammar Awad)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett knows that if the government decides to go to a military confrontation, his coalition will fall, and therefore he is restraining himself, MK Jada Rinawi-Zoabi (Meretz), said Sunday.

Speaking to Makan Radio, Rinawi-Zoabi said that “Bennett knows that if the government goes to a military confrontation – the coalition will fall because both Meretz and Ra’am will not agree to such a thing. The presence of Meretz and Ra’am in the coalition limits the sharpness of any military decision,” she asserted.

She was commenting on Israel’s limited response to Hezbollah’s rockets attack on the north on Friday, the first such attack in 15 years.

“If Netanyahu had been in power he would have launched a major operation against Lebanon, while Bennett is restrained because he knows he has no right-wing support,” she said.

“Once the government decides on something military, there will be a danger to the coalition. It is in the coalition agreements. The government agreed that it would only deal with economic and civil matters,” she noted.

Her statements drew a harsh condemnation of Bennett, and several politicians called on him to resign.

MK Amichai Chikli, a member of Bennett’s Yamina Party, said he agreed with Rinawi-Zoabi’s criticism and added to the criticism the fact that the Labor Party and its Arab MK Ibtism Mara’ana is a member of the Knesset Defense Committee.

“It is no coincidence that today (and not three months ago) Hezbollah chose to cross a line that has not been crossed in 15 years,” he said.

MK Shlomo Karhi said that “when the Muslim Brotherhood sets the agenda in the Israeli government, together with the anti-Zionists in Meretz and Labor, there is no doubt that Zoabi is right.”

“This government is dangerous. Extremists have taken control of the ship’s rudder, while its captains are asleep. We must wake up before it is too late,” he warned.

On the other hand, Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked, Bennett’s political partner, responded and said that “if we have to launch an operation in Gaza or Lebanon, then we will do it, and if there is no government, then there will be no government. The MKs who chat will then decide what to do. “