Feiglin is trying to get BiBi in a box . . . But BiBi is the Houdini of politics. Try as you might, you can’t get the guy to stay put. He always has a way out.
by Gil Ronen
(IsraelNN.com) The head of the "Manhigut Yehudit" (Jewish Leadership) faction in the Likud party, Moshe Feiglin, is putting pressure on the party's leader, Opposition Head Binyamin Netanyahu, to announce that he will not honor any agreement that cedes parts of Jerusalem, if and when he becomes Prime Minister.
In a letter made public Tuesday, Feiglin demanded that Netanyahu announce without delay that "the Likud movement sees negotiations on Jerusalem's future as illegitimate and that a future government headed by the Likud will not consider itself bound by decisions reached in such negotiations."
Feiglin, who received 23% of the registered Likud members' votes in the August primaries, warned that if Netanyahu does not rise to the challenge within the next few days, he will act to convene the Likud's Central Committee (Merkaz) in order to force a decision that makes it incumbent on the Likud's elected leaders to see any decision about dividing Jerusalem as an illegitimate one, which is not to be honored.
'Jerusalem can unite the Jews'
Feiglin explained the thinking behind his demand: "This announcement, along with a public campaign that the Likud under your leadership will conduct, can prevent negotiations from continuing, because they will become meaningless when support for the Israeli government and its head drops to single digits," he wrote. "Jerusalem can unite the entire Jewish public in Israel. I have no doubt that the leaders of the national parties and even some of the Knesset Members from [ruling party] Kadima, will join this struggle, which is one for our survival.”
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Monday that he is "not convinced" that it was necessary to add the "refugee camp" of Shuefat, as well as Arab a-Sawahra, Walajeh and other villages to Jerusalem's municipal area after the 1967 Six-Day War. He spoke at a special Knesset session marking six years since the assassination of Minister Rehavam "Gandhi" Ze'evi.
Kadima party MK Ze'ev Elkin said Monday that he was worried about talk of dividing Jerusalem. "We need to discuss the matter of Jerusalem in the Kadima faction," he said. "I think that there is no way people will live normally in Pisgat Ze'ev if we return [sic] Shuefat."
Both Netanyahu and veteran Likud MK Reuven Rivlin made impassioned speeches two weeks ago in which they called upon the Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) and Shas parties to leave the coalition in order to prevent concessions on Jerusalem.