Photo Credit: Rabbi Amichai Eliyahu's Facebook page
Rabbi Amichai Eliyahu

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sunday morning suspended Heritage Minister Amichai Eliyahu (Otzma Yehudit) from government meetings until further notice following his remarks on Radio Kol Barama that one of the options is to drop an atomic bomb on the Gaza Strip. Well, not exactly his remarks.

For some unfathomable reason, the host asked Eliyahu if Israel should drop an atomic on Gaza, the minister answered, “That’s one way, but…” Eliyahu then continued explaining that what Israel needs to do is find out what is important to Hamas, what will deter them, what will scare them – as they aren’t afraid to die. Eliyahu said the IDF needs to find the price that will deter Hamas, including taking territory, rebuilding Gush Katif, and finding some other country for them.


A livid Netanyahu noted: “His words are disconnected from reality.”

Minister Eliyahu tried to clarify that his statement was only a metaphor. But from the context of the interview, it appears that he meant the real thing. The host asked him, what about the 240 Israeli hostages who are in captivity in Gaza, he answered, “I pray and hope for their return, but war has costs.”

Does that cost include all the Jewish towns in the vicinity? Anyone teach him about nuclear fallout?

Al Jazeera, always happy to quote stuff from Radio Kol Barama, Israel’s prominent religious station, tweeted: “Urgent | Minister of Heritage in the Israeli government: Dropping a nuclear bomb on Gaza is a possible solution, and for the kidnappers, war has costs.”

OK, they didn’t catch the subtle difference between kidnapped and kidnappers. But they have millions of followers on Twitter, and the post amassed 181,000 views in short order.

Defense Minister Yoav Galant responded: “I condemn the baseless and irresponsible words of Minister Amichai Eliyahu,” and then added a jab at Eliyahu’s boss, National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir” “It’s a good thing that these are not the people in charge of Israel’s security.” Which is kind of ironic, if you think about it.

Anyway, the Netanyahu cabinet hasn’t been called for a month now, so no real harm done.


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