Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Wednesday said Israel had been a hostage to the two-state solution for over two decades, and that the election of Donald Trump in America represented an “historic opportunity” to change course.
“It is in our hands to change the course of the State of Israel. To take Israel out of the ‘Oslo’ perception of a ‘Palestinian State,’ to which we have been held captive for 23 years and has brought us only terror, pain, suffering, and a dead end,” read a lengthy statement released by Bennett.
The Jewish Home party leader lamented that the notion of a Palestinian state…has turned into a national and international obsession," despite the fact that pushing for such an outcome has only brought more conflict and bloodshed.
Bennett said it was time for Israel to re-adopt an attitude of “sovereignty.”
He noted that two important world events had provided a rare opportunity to do just that: “On the one hand, the collapse of the Arab-Muslim world in recent years, and on the other hand Trump’s victory in the US.”
Indeed, one of Trump’s close advisors, Jason Greenblatt, confirmed to Army Radio on Wednesday that the US president-elect would break with America’s traditional policy of viewing Jewish settlement in the biblical heartland as an obstacle to peace, and instead put the onus on the Palestinians.
“It is certainly not Mr. Trump’s view that settlement activity should be condemned and that it is an obstacle for peace - because it is not the obstacle for peace,” said Greenblatt.
Rather than direct and overbearing interference, like past presidents, Greenblatt said Trump “is not going to impose any solution on Israel. He thinks that the peace has to come from the parties themselves.”