Defense minister Bennett: ‘History is knocking on the door, take it all and now’

“The campaign now moves from the White House in Washington to the Cabinet room in Jerusalem,” Bennett said.

By World Israel News Staff 

On the heels of Tuesday’s announcement of President Donald Trump’s peace plan for Israel and the Palestinians, Israel’s Defense Minister Naftali Bennett declared that “history is knocking on the door.”

“The campaign now moves from the White House in Washington to the Cabinet room in Jerusalem,” Bennett said.

“Don’t put it off until after the elections, and don’t suffice with partial sovereignty. Take it all, and now,” the defense minister urged, referring to the aspect of the Trump plan which allows the Jewish State to extend its sovereignty to parts of Judea and Samaria, territory which is part of the biblical Land of Israel but was not part of the modern state until it was captured by the Israeli military in the 1967 war.

Israel is scheduled to hold a parliamentary election on March 2. Both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his main challenger in the election, MK Benny Gantz, held talks with the U.S. president this week at the White House and discussed the peace plan.

Gantz said the process should move ahead only after the election.

Cabinet minister Yariv Levin, who was a member of Netanyahu’s delegation in Washington, called it “a historic day, a day of immense victory for the policy led by Prime Minister Netanyahu.”

Levin said that contrary to earlier anticipation, the Cabinet would not approve Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria at its next meeting on Sunday, as Netanyahu said earlier, but he added that the delay was only “technical,” as various documents would first be reviewed by Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit over the legality of the move.

MK Ayelet Shaked, a former justice minister, predicted that Mandelblit would not oppose the measure.

Kan public broadcasting said that the attorney general would be reviewing international law among other aspects of such a move.

Shaked said in an interview with Israel’s Army Radio on Wednesday, that “there is no basis…in the law” for prohibiting a transition cabinet from acting.

Differences of opinion have emerged among leaders of Israeli settlement in Judea and Samaria over whether to accept the Trump plan.

David Elhayani, Chairman of the Yesha Council of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, said on Tuesday that “we cannot accept a plan that would include the establishment of a Palestinian state, which would pose a threat to the State of Israel.”

Members of the Yesha leadership added that they would even prefer to forego Israeli annexation in parts of the territory over accepting a Palestinian state within other parts of Judea and Samaria.

However, various other leaders of Jewish localities in the territory said it would be a mistake to reject the U.S. president’s plan and urged the Israeli government to impose sovereignty as soon as possible.