Netanyahu: I will not allow Israel to be governed by Talmudic law

The Likud leader also said his incoming government would “not ban LGBT forums.”

By World Israel News Staff

Prime minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu said he will not allow Israel to be governed by Talmudic law, in an interview with former New York Times journalist Bari Weiss on Wednesday.

The Likud leader also said his incoming government would “not ban LGBT forums,” despite the presence of the anti-gay Noam party.

Weiss, who interviewed Netanyahu for her Honestly podcast, asked Netanyahu about firebrand MK and Otzma Yehudit leader Itamar Ben-Gvir’s inclusion in the government.

The prime minister-designate defended Ben-Gvir, saying that “his eligibility to be a coalition member and a minister was determined by none other than the Supreme Court …If they didn’t he would not be here.”

“The main policy of the government is determined by the Likud and, frankly, by me,” Netanyahu said in the interview. “We are going to remain a country of laws.”

Ben-Gvir, who recently closed a deal with Likud to serve in the newly established position of National Security Minister, was accused by outgoing Prime Minister Yair Lapid of politicizing the IDF after he expressed his disdain at a punishment given to an IDF soldier who was filmed in a verbal confrontation with a left-wing group in Hebron.

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Netanyahu in response said on Twitter that the IDF  is the “people’s army,” and that all politicians “should refrain from including it in any political argument.”

Appearing to confirm reports from earlier this month that the Biden administration had warned Netanyahu not to hand the defense portfolio – which had been coveted by Religious Zionism leader Bezalel Smotrich – to “smaller parties,” Netanyahu said: “People said, ‘you’re going to give up the defense department to one of these smaller parties,’ they were very worried about it,” Netanyahu told Weiss. “I said that’s not going to happen.”

“They were very worried about it. And I said that’s not going to happen. They said we’re not going to form a government if it doesn’t happen. Well, we are forming a government, and it’s not going to happen. That’s a red line: defense is in our hands,” he told Weiss.

“Defense is not merely what you think it is. It is not merely preventing incoming missiles,” he explained. “It is also deciding on policies that could be quite inflammatory,” Netanyahu stated, adding that he is “trying to avoid that.”

During the interview, Netanyahu also addressed former President Donald Trump’s decision to host disgraced antisemitic rapper Kanye West and Holocaust-denier Nick Fuentes at his Mar-a-Lago estate last week.

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The decision to dine with them was “wrong and misplaced,” Netanyahu said.

“I think it’s a mistake…He shouldn’t do that,” he continued, but added that Trump has been a great supporter of Israel.