Israel: Retired general says differences are not about annexation per se

Former Israeli National Security Advisor, Yaakov Amidror (Twitter)

Middle East Monitor  /  June 11, 2020

Retired Major General and former National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror said on Wednesday that the differences surfacing in Israel are not about annexation per se, but about what form it will take, the The Jerusalem Post has reported.

According to Amidror, the issue of annexation is political not professional, so there should be differences of opinion between the experts, who consider the threats and consequences, and the politicians with their different principles.

The former official said that the most dangerous decisions in Israel have been made without consulting experts. He pointed out that the late Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin did not consult anyone before signing the peace treaty with Egypt in the 1970s. Nor, he said, did his successor Yitzhak Rabin consult anyone about signing the Oslo Peace Accords with the PLO in the 1990s.

However, noted Amidror, the peace process with Egypt succeeded and the one with the Palestinians did not.

When Israeli journalist Ben Kaspit suggested that some of the Jewish settlers believe that Trump’s “peace plan” is good, Amidror replied: “They support the annexation, but they do not support recognising a Palestinian state. They believe that the price is too high. So their difference is not about the annexation, but about one of its foundations.”

The security expert believes that the annexation plan does not help Israel in any practical sense, as it would not improve the life of the settlers who would become part of the Israeli bureaucracy, which is worse than the current set up.

Three issues are facing the plan, he concluded: the reaction of the Arab states; its repercussions on the Israeli-Palestinian relationship; and the ability of the Israeli army to deal with its new responsibilities.