The Opposition took aim at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wednesday during a special hearing on "The Netanyahu government's failure in the political, economic, and social fields".
"You have isolated the State of Israel," said MK Dalia Itzik (Kadima). "You and your government sit in shocking idleness while the Arab states conduct a de-legitimization campaign. Your answer to that: They hate us."
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"You have divided Jerusalem. No one has ever divided it more than you have. You are establishing the Palestinian state, it's happening on your watch. You have turned construction in isolated settlements into the most meaningful thing. It was a huge achievement by the Barak, Sharon, and Olmert government and you have ruined it."
The MK went on to criticize Netanyahu's recent visit to the US, saying relations with President Barack Obama are currently at an all-time low.
"In two years… everyone became your enemies," she said, naming Germany, Turkey, Russia, and Jordan. "Where are your talents when it comes to international treaties? In international relations you are a total failure. We don't have a single ally in the world."
Opposition chairwoman Tzipi Livni also took to the podium, criticizing the prime minister for saying in an interview that the conflict with the Palestinians is insolvable. "Who said you could determine that?" she asked, adding that "there has never been a greater gap between the smugness of a prime minister and the distress of his state."
Tibi removes wafers, cottage cheese
Netanyahu had earlier responded to the Opposition's claims against him by defending the stalemate with the Palestinians, saying that the conditions he had insisted upon were widely accepted.
"I believe we need to unite around these principles that are shared by a large part of the people," he said, referring to Israel's stance on issues such as the Palestinian refugees, demilitarization of the future Palestinian state, and the recognition of Israel as the Jewish nation.
Netanyahu dictated each condition to the Knesset plenum amid a wide variety of catcalls. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin was forced to intervene a number of times.
Netanyahu also stressed that certain settlement blocs would remain in Israel, and Jerusalem its capital. "I hope you will finally decide to support these founding principles, and that you will finally place the state's wellbeing above the benefit of the party," he told Kadima.
During the hearing Netanyahu feasted on wafers and coffee, but was quickly lit upon by Deputy Knesset Speaker MK Ahmad Tibi. "I'm allowed coffee," the prime minister said in his defense. Tibi replied, "Coffee, yes, wafers, no."
Another food-related issue was brought to the plenum's attention when MK Ronit Tirosh placed a plastic container of cottage cheese on the Netanyahu's desk. She explained that it was an "expensive gift" for the prime minister. Tirosh was referring to a recent mark-up in cottage cheese prices.
This move also sparked Tibi's ire, and he ordered the Knesset's guards to remove the cheese from the plenum.
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