National Security

The following is taken from Yisrael Beytenu’s official platform, written ahead of the 2009 elections

Yisrael Beytenu firmly believes that Israel’s deterrence ability and military strength  are absolutely fundamental to the prospects of peace

 Iran, Syrian and other terrorist entities form an axis of evil bent on the destruction of Israel.   Iran works through its proxies, such as Hezbollah and Hamas, and arms them with tens of thousands of missiles.   What motivates them is not despair, but hope that Israel can be destroyed

A new approach to security policy – Our goal is to prevent  the nuclear armament of Iran, while responding forcefully to any hostile attacks – forcefully enough so that no group or country could ever think that attacking Israel could be “worth the price.”   Syria and Iran are directly responsible for thee aggression from Lebanon.  We must substitute the policy of restraint and limited responses for one that  constantly fights terrorism and never lets the other side think that its terrorism has achieved anything positive.

Palestinian-Israeli Conflict – The assumption that this conflict is the heart of the Middle East conflict in general is unfounded.  This is just one of the many conflicts within the Muslim world, including a territorial conflict between different countries, a conflict between the various currents within Islam, and many, many civil wars.

The belief that the root of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict is territorial, and therefore can be solved by giving up territory, is a grave error.   Arab terrorism against Jews, starting with the arrival of the early pioneers at the beginning of the twentieth century is the root of the problem. The deadly pogrom in Hebron (1929), the Great Arab Revolt in the 30s and other incidents all occurred before the establishment of the State. In addition, Fatah and the PLO were established before 1967 .  It is important notethat during the 19 years between 1948 to 1967, no Palestinian state was established, and no one claimed the West Bank as a sovereign state.  It is obvious that the pursuit of a Palestinian state and the “right of return” is designed to disguise the real purpose, which is to wipe out  Israel as a Jewish and Zionist country.

Gaza  is a terrorist entity run by an Islamist organization: Hamas.  It is part of the Axis of Evil. ”Yisrael Beytenu” sees Gaza and the West Bank as two separate entities and will act to prevent current passage of people and goods between them.  Negotiations with the PA only concern Judea and Samaria.   Israel should declare after giving a reasonable amount of notice that crossings between Gaza and the West Bank are closed.  The Disengagement from Gaza should be complete – as then Prime Minister Sharon promised: no goods, no electricity, fuel, water, jobs, money transfers etc.

The Golan Heights  are  part of the historical Land of Israel and part of the State of Israel. Any future peace agreement with Syria  will not change this status.

Peace for peace – While peace is our yearning and the one of top priorities it is not a value superior to Israel’s existence as a Jewish state and the security of its citizens. We extend our hand in peace to our enemies, but as long as they choose the path of war, we must be diligent and fight back.

We must break free of the obsession with the principle of “land for peace”.  Any peace agreement signed in the future will be based on the principle of reciprocity – “peace for peace”, the maximal separation of populations, and be part of  the  a regionwide solution that includes Egypt and Jordan.

A territory and Population Exchange – The currently proposed peace settlement includes a demand that Israel evacuate all Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, similar to what happened with the Gush Katif communities. This would mean a homogeneous Palestinian state without a single Jew, while the State of Israel would become a binational state with a minority population of more than – 20%. Such a model is not sustainable. It would  only be a matter of time before Israeli-Arabs start demanding some form of autonomy in the Galilee and Negev, for example.  The next stage would be the de facto dismantling of Israel as a Jewish and Zionist state.

Therefore, any peace proposa must be a  symmetrical arrangement that ensures  long term stability, as opposed to one that only perpetuates the conflict. Everywhere in the world there is conflict where two peoples, who believe in different faiths and speak different languages.  The Caucasus region in Russia, the Balkans, and even Belgium and Canada are examples of this. Therefore, any solution must include maximal separation between the two nations.

Jerusalem - Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel and the Jewish people – and theirs alone. There will not be any negotiations on Jerusalem. The status of the  city will be strengthened by the accelerated construction of uninterrupted connection to Ma’aleh Adumim and Gush Etzion, and create territorial contiguity of communities in the “Jerusalem envelope.”

“Yisrael Beytenu” will promote special programs for strengthening the city in terms of security, economics, and tourism. We will work to promote the transfer of governmental and public institutions to Jerusalem; campaign in Congress, the White House and the American public to relocate the U.S. Embassy to the Israel’s capital and ensure the  free access for all religions to their holy sites and full freedom of worship.

Major objectives in the international arena

Israel must clearly set four main goals in the international arena:

The Isolation of Iran – This will be achieved by stiff sanctions and similar to those imposed on Libya and North Korea in the past.  Apart  from the obvious and very serious danger of Iranian efforts to acquire nuclear weapons, we must be concerned by the very real prospect of other countries seeking nuclear armament – such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Upgrading of relations with the European Union –  Israel’s foreign and security is  based on a strategic alliance and close cooperation with the U.S.  At the same time, however, Israel should advance the creation of a United States style relationship more with the European Union. Unfortunately, often we find ourselves relying solely on an American veto on the Security Council.   The accession of new countries from Central and Eastern Europe to the EU creates a window of opportunity for the State of Israel to build solid and warm cooperative ties with the EU – eventually leading to Israel’s joining the EU and NATO countries.

Strengthening ties with Russia allows Israel to serve as a bridge between the superpowers Tension and friction do rise from time to time between US and Russia as we have seen in a long line of issues such as Kosovo, Georgia, placing missiles in Poland and the Czech Republic and sanctions against Iran, among others. hit the most vital interests, the State of Israel.  Israel has much to contribute to creating greater understanding and new priorities in the international arena. We are certain priorities are not in Kosovo or the Israeli – Palestinian confict but in Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Global Jihad and the growing extremism in the Muslim world are threatening not only Israel but also on Russia and the United States.

Expanding the number of international support – We cannot be resigned to a situation where the State of Israel finds itself alone internationally, and particularly at UN votes where the Muslim bloc, the Arab League, Third World countries and countries from the EU vote against us.  We believe there are many countries, especially new countries in Central and Eastern Europe and South and East Asia, coping with problems similar or identical to those of the State of Israel with which we  can build warm ties based on common interests. This is not simple and requires openness to new ideas, investment and concerted effort and focus over several years. Eventually you can create a block of allied nations who coordinate positions and stand side by side in the international arena.

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