Photo Credit: IDF
Knives Used by Passengers Aboard the Mavi Marmara

So far, only two government ministers, Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz and Housing Minister Yoav Galant, both from Likud, are on the record as supporting Prime Minister Netanyahu’s deal with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to pay upwards of $21 million as reparations to the families of anti-Zionist Turkish activists who attacked IDF soldiers with metal rods, rocks and knives when they attempted to take over the ship Mavi Marmara back in 2010. The deal also included a public apology (check) and easing the Israeli blockade on Gaza, which always ends up as a wise move when dealing with Hamas.

The loud objections from both sides of the aisle which the Netanyahu deal has raised on Monday may be the reason that four ministers Netanyahu was counting on to support him are yet to say anything on the subject: Moshe Kahlon (Kulanu), Aryeh Deri (Shas), Gilad Erdan (Likud) and Israel Katz (Likud). Meanwhile, three ministers have erected a strong front against the deal: Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beiteinu), Naftali Bennett (Habayit Hayehudi), and Ayelet Shaked (Habayit Hayehudi).

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Liberman this week denied reports that he had committed to supporting the deal, as part of his entering the Netanyahu government. In closed sessions he went as far as to say that if he thins the deal is bad, he would vote against it.

Bennett said on Tuesday morning that “the State of Israel must not pay reparations to terrorists who tried to harm the IDF. A rapprochement with Turkey is important for this time and for the interests of the State of Israel, but paying reparations to terrorists is a dangerous precedent the State of Israel would regret in the future.”

A Channel 10 News survey released Monday showed that 56% of Israelis object to the deal with Turkey, and 67% believe it should have been conditioned on the return of the bodies of IDF soldiers in Hamas’ possession, as well as two Israeli civilians believed to be alive.

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7 COMMENTS

  1. This article needs to qualify this opposition by placing it context. Israel's political system is a democratically elected dictatorship, the worst system in the western world.
    Since it has no Constitution nor Bill of Rights nor regional constituency elections, nor separation of powers, Netanyahu can either fire those cabinet ministers and replace them with others who support him. Or, which is what will probably happen, Netanyahu will have enough support for this to pass.
    Notice that the Knesset plays no part. It's majority is under the control of the Prime Minister.
    The opinions of 7 million don't matter. Only the opinion of Netanyahu counts.
    So, to get to the point I was making with my introductory sentence, what Lieberman, Bennett, et al say is meaningless, other than to show people that if they were Prime Minister, they wouldn't have made the deal as is.
    Will they topple the dictatorship over this? No. That's their only option if they want to stop it.

  2. Israel has an opportunity to reconcile with a strategic player that is in the process of accepting that it can't fight terror alone.

    Better to swallow one's pride, bend a bit, but make a deal which enhances security

  3. According to Ingtelligence information just released the Mavi Marmara action was defective from the get go and if all available intellifgence had been considered in time the outcome would amost certainly have been different and human lives spared.

    The fact that certain politicians object to the agreement with Turkey just goes to prove their being unfit for public office, particularly the Moldovan thug Liberman who is an embarrassment to the State and whose ministerial appointment the worst example of political double dealing on the part of Bibi.

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