Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid harshly criticized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's conduct during Operation Protective Edge, saying that the prime minister did not have the courage to lead to the demilitarization of the Gaza Strip. The former finance minister termed such conduct "diplomatic cowardice".
Speaking at a cultural event in Holon, Lapid said that no diplomatic effort was made after Operation Protective Edge ended. "Netanyahu feared that we did not appear sufficiently determined during the operation, and as such, going to the Gaza donors conference would have been perceived as weakness on our part. No effort was made, and that is a mistake. This is (part of) the prime minister's continuous attempts to not do anything. If you aren't doing anything, why are you in power?"
Lapid added that he has no doubt Netanyahu will aim to increase the number of cabinet ministers if elected as prime minister again. "Before we arrived there were 30 ministers, 3 ministers without portfolio. We stopped that – in this government there were 21 ministers and none without portfolio."
If Netanyahu wins, Lapid added, "there won't be an equal share of the burden of military service, the national program for Holocaust survivors will be cancelled, and "the government will consist of 30 ministers again."
"We won't let him undo everything we worked for," Lapid said.
Likud MK Danny Danon, who is running against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in their party's leadership primary, was also present at the event, where he stressed the importance of a show of support from party leaders for a candidate for prime minister.
"I call on Kahlon, Lieberman and Deri, whose majority of voters are from the national camp, to gather courage and tell us if they support a right or left-wing government. I am positive that any voter from the national camp will feel that he has been deceived if it turns out that his vote was shifted from the right to the left."