Israeli Defense Minister Ya’alon Resigns As Netanyahu Blows Up New Effort for Peace Talks with Palestine
May 20, 2016 (EIRNS)—Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon announced his resignation at a press conference in Tel Aviv. He said he will also resign from the Knesset. Although he said was taking a break, he did "not intend to leave political and public life." On the surface the move is a dirty deal by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to expand his coalition, bringing the rightwing-ethnic Israeli Russian Yisrael Beteinu party into the coalition and making its leader, former Foriegn Minister Avigdor Lieberman, the defense minister. Furthermore, Netanyahu aims at blowing up the initiative of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to get the Palestinian-Israeli peace talks restarted, which has the backing the United Nations Security Council.
Ya’alon blasted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, at his press conference, saying:
"In all my actions and decisions, I saw before my eyes the security of the state and its good above every other consideration....I found myself in difficult political arguments with the prime minister over core values.
"Senior politicians chose the path of incitement. It’s unbearable that we should be divided in a lust for power. A position of leadership does not subject itself to polls and the prevailing public mood."
"Fundamentalist influences have taken over Likud. This is not the same Likud that I joined. A spirit of fracturing is ruling the movement.
"I fought with all my strength against the phenomena of extremism, violence and racism in Israeli society that threatens our might and also permeates the [Israeli Defense Forces] IDF, and has already damaged it."
While it has yet to be decided, the appointment of Lieberman, who lives in a West Bank settlement, as defense minister, is nothing but a provocation to blow up any effort to get peace talks going, if not to actually get a new war started.
While Ya’alon is far from a peace activist, he did oppose launching an attack on Iran. As one unnamed member of the Knesset told Ynet, "We’ve lost a sane and sound voice within the insane and dangerous current right-wing government."