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Gary Bauer / April 22, 2022

Demonizing Israel

PM Naftali Bennett was interviewed by CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. It was more of a debate than an interview.

Lost in all the headlines about Ukraine and Russia is that Israel is confronting the most intense wave of Palestinian extremist violence in months. Of course, it’s happening during Ramadan, when Palestinians are once again lying about threats to the Al Aqsa mosque.

Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was interviewed on CNN by Christiane Amanpour. It was more of a debate than an interview, as Amanpour repeatedly demonized Israel. Just consider this remarkable exchange:

AMANPOUR: This is a picture that the world has gotten used to now. It’s a constant cycle of killing, bloodshed, all sides really…

BENNETT: Well, the way the facts were presented is not accurate. Israel is peaceful… Unfortunately, a new wave of terror was thrown upon the Israeli public. We lost 14 people in four different terror attacks… This is unacceptable.

So, I object to the notion of “both sides.” No. When they don’t attack us, we have no issues with them. But when they do attack us, I have to fight back and hit them at their terror bases. And that’s what any leader would do…

Now, regarding the broader picture, look I’m not going to [conduct] experiments on the security of the Israelis… We handed Gaza over to the Palestinians… And what we got in return is hell, tens of thousands of rockets shot at us…

AMANPOUR: Let’s just take what’s happening on the Temple Mount, Haram al-Sharif… Why do you allow Israeli soldiers to go into that mosque?

BENNETT: Christiane, there you go again starting the story in the middle… Last Friday … roughly 300 Palestinian rioters entered Temple Mount Mosque with explosives, with stones. They began desecrating their own mosque, burning, throwing stones…

My responsibility as prime minister of Israel is to provide freedom of prayer to everyone in Jerusalem, including Muslims, which is why I had to send in policemen to remove the rioters…

AMANPOUR: Again, the context, the West Bank has been occupied since 1967. Settlers are allowed to be there. It is a minority. I know that. But they’re there. And they are violent, this minority… what is your response to that?

BENNETT: No, what you have been projecting is blatantly false.

AMANPOUR: Why do you say that?

BENNETT: Because it’s a lie, simply a lie…

AMANPOUR: You cannot say that to me. You cannot tell me I’m lying.

BENNETT: Let me finish. I object to the symmetry that you’re trying to create here… But who’s getting murdered? We’re seeing Palestinians murder Israelis. We’re not seeing Israelis murdering Palestinians. And that’s why there’s no symmetry here.

For years, liberal reporters demonized Benjamin Netanyahu, as if he was the impediment to peace. As usual, their false narrative is totally wrong. The problem isn’t Israel or who happens to be prime minister. The impediment to peace is Palestinian violence, stirred up by Hamas, Hezbollah and the radical mullahs of Iran.

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