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January 31, 2015 / 11 Shevat, 5775
 
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Meet Religious Zionism’s New Hope


Naftali Bennett

Naftali Bennett
Photo Credit: Moshe Shai/Flash90

YM: You’ve been promoting for the last six months a plan for Israel to annex what is known as “Area C” in Judea and Samaria. How do the secular Zionists that have aligned themselves with you feel about this issue? Do they support you on this?

NB: In terms of the national camp, whether religious or secular, there is overwhelming support for declaring sovereignty over Israeli controlled areas in Judea and Samaria.

By the way we just did a poll and it showed that a majority of all Israelis (not just the national camp) support it; not a huge majority but a majority nevertheless.

YM: In a nutshell, what are the most important issues that need to be addressed in Israel?

NB: The first is to instill a very strong Jewish and Zionist identity in our youth via the education system. Every kid needs to know who Yoni Netanyahu was and who the Rambam (Maimonides) was. Unfortunately this isn’t the case so we have a lot of work to do. The second big issue is to take care of Israel’s periphery because right now there’s a huge and growing socio-economic gap between those living in the center of Israel and those dwelling in the north and south. This is simply a time bomb. The third issue is the big security threat from Iran which has to be dealt with within the next year or two one way or the other.

YM: Thank you for your time and good luck.

About the Author: Yoel Meltzer is a freelance writer living in Jerusalem. He can be contacted via http://yoelmeltzer.com.


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