Speaking at a conference in Jerusalem on Wednesday, Naftali Bennett said Israel should be “very worried” about a possible detente between the U.S. and Iran.
By World Israel News Staff
The Yamina Party’s Naftali Bennett expressed grave concern over the departure of U.S. national security adviser John Bolton and the White House’s apparent willingness to roll back pressure on Iran, which the Jewish state views as an existential threat.
Bennett made the comments at an elections conference on Wednesday hosted by two Israeli dailies, The Jerusalem Post and Ma’ariv.
“We should be very worried,” Bennett said, according to the Post. The Yamina candidate added that while Trump is “obviously a big friend of Israel,” the two allies’ interests are “not identical.”
The comments were made in the context of a discussion regarding President Donald Trump’s firing of Bolton yesterday and his overtures regarding a potential meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
Bennett referred to “pressure” exerted both by the U.S., through economic sanctions, and by Israel, “by pushing away the entrenchment of Iran in Syria and other places.”
Bennett concluded that it “will be very bad” if the pressure is relaxed, adding that he is “very, very troubled” by the situation with Iran, the Post reported.
Netanyahu rival Avigdor Liberman, who leads the Yisrael Beytenu party, also spoke at the event on Wednesday, claiming that Bolton’s departure harms the prime minister’s ability to present himself as aligned with Trump on the Iranian threat.
According to Liberman, Bolton’s removal means “the end of all coordination . . . between Netanyahu and the White House on the Iranian nuclear program,” which he called “a very great problem” for Israel.
During the past year, Israel has revealed damning evidence regarding Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons development efforts, which casts serious doubt on the Islamic Republic’s claims that its nuclear ambitions are limited to peaceful aims.
Israel also continues to carry out punishing airstrikes on Iranian military personnel and bases in Syria and Iraq, in addition to striking Iranian terror proxies Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon.