Prime Minister Ehud Olmert
is lubricating the wheels of terror with his bear hands and selling the Israeli citizens' security for nothing, Knesset Member Zevulun Orlev, chairman of the National Religious Party, said Wednesday.
Orlev made the remarks in response to the prime minister's decision to supply the Palestinians with 25 armored vehicles from Russia and 2 million bullets from Jordan, despite the defense establishment's objection to the move.
"The armored vehicles and the ammunition will be directed at the citizens of Israel.
The fact that the prime minister is showing contempt for the warnings of the defense establishment is complete anarchy," Orlev added, noting that "the silence of the lambs of Yisrael Beiteinu and Shas won't let them say, 'Our hands did not spill this blood.'"
MK Arieh Eldad (National Union-National Religious Party) said that "the prime minister's cynicism has crossed every logic line with this act. Olmert is releasing terrorists despite the chief of staff's demands,
and is arming them with armored vehicles and weapons despite the Shin Bet and IDF's recommendations.
"Olmert will be personally responsible for any Jew hurt, and he will have to be prosecuted for crimes against the Jewish people."
MK Eitam (NU-NRP) said, "Olmert is once against showing contempt for the defense establishment and coming up with decisions which endanger the security of the State of Israel.
"The man who evaded his responsibility for the disaster in Lebanon
is now leading the State to a security disaster in central Israel and to more bloodshed. Past experience shows that every armored vehicle and every Palestinian rifle and bullet have one address – innocent Jewish citizens."
MK Yuli Edelstein (Likud) joined the critics, saying that "in his hastiness Olmert is putting the citizens' lives in danger. For the photo-ops at Annapolis, he his making daily gestures which will increase terror, while completely ignoring the defense officials' objection.
"At the Rabin and Peres era the Palestinians at least pretended to want peace, and were awarded with gestures. Now they understand that they must increase terror in order to be awarded with gestures which will harm Israel's security, as another step toward its destruction."
MK Limor Livnat (Likud) added, "In an irresponsible decision Olmert is putting the security of the citizens of Israel in risk. The millions of bullets will eventually be directed at the citizens of the State of Israel, as has happened before after the Oslo Accords."
The Likud party said in an official response, "The Olmert-Barak-Livni government's moral deterioration is continuing, and this will only lead to an ongoing deterioration in security.
"Less than two days after approving the release of hundreds of Palestinian terrorists, the government is making more concessions without getting anything in return and repeating the past's mistake."
From the opposite side of the political map, MK Avshalom Vilan (Meretz) suppoered the move.
"We must give the PA an opportunity to fight terror, otherwise we will never leave the West Bank," he said.
A senior official at the Prime Minister's Office said in response to the criticism over the planned move, "We are asking the Palestinians to fight terror. How are they supposed to do that, with stolen Israeli cars?"
The Prime Minister's Office denied earlier reports that Israel would supply 50 armored vehicles and 1,000 rifles to the Palestinians: "Not one rifle was approved."