by Andrew Friedman
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Monday that an Israel-Palestinian peace summit, set to convene on January 15 without the participation of either Israeli or Palestinian Authority representatives, will be little more than a “modern day Dreyfus affair” to conjure up false charges against the entire Jewish people. He added that the current diplomatic offensive against Israel has nothing to do with Israel’s domestic behavior.
“The timing of this farce – 15 January, just four days before President Oabama leaves office, and not to mention the 23rd of April, when it is clear the French government will be voted out of office – makes it absolutely clear that this is not a peace conference. It is a tribunal against Israel meant only to damage Israel’s security and to sully Israel’s good name,” Liberman said.
Speaking to reporters before the weekly meeting of the Yisrael Beteinu Knesset faction, the defense minister said Israel must prepare for the summit by clearly articulating its positions and its relationship to the gathering, and to any declarations that come out of it. He added that the foreign policy establishment in Jerusalem is now focused on looking to the future and coordinating policy and expectations with the incoming Trump administration, particularly on four major policy issues: Iran, the Palestinian Authority, Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and Syria.
Liberman also used the statement for a blistering attack on the French government, and called on French Jews to move to Israel.
“I think that this is transparent, that everybody understands the logic behind holding this conference at this time. People say that I’m exaggerating, but look at all of France’s votes over the past year, in every UN forum imaginable – UNESCO, the Security Council, the General Assembly. Once you consider all that, everything falls into place and the point of all this becomes clear.
“I don’t want to get into a long history Jews in France, but the past few years – from the attack on the Jewish school in Toulouse to Hyper Cacher, to all the anti-Semitism of recent times. Maybe this is the right time to tell French Jews that France is simply not your country. Get out! Come to Israel. If you want to stay Jewish, if you want to protect your children and grandchildren, get out of France and come to Israel,” he said.