Naftali Bennett Enters the International Arena

By serving as a mediator between Ukraine and Russia, Israel’s prime minister brings his nation into new and unknown territory. Is he doing the right thing?

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at a press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Jerusalem on March 2, 2022. GIL COHEN-MAGEN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at a press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Jerusalem on March 2, 2022. GIL COHEN-MAGEN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images.

Observation
March 11 2022
About the author

Amos Yadlin served as Israel’s chief of defense intelligence and then, from 2011-2021, as executive director of the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) in Tel Aviv.

“When I was growing up in Ukraine, in Donetsk, there were many nations and nationalities. There were those with identity papers that read ‘Russian,’ ‘Ukrainian,’ ‘Georgian,’ or ‘Kozak.’ This was not so important since there was not much difference among them. The single designation that stood out was ‘Jew.’ If that was written as your identity, it was as if you had a disease. . . . This week, I was reminded of those days when I saw thousands of people standing at the borders of the Ukraine trying to escape. . . . They are standing there day and night and there is only one word that can help them get out: ‘Jew.’ If you are a Jew, there are Jews outside who care about and are waiting for you.”

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More about: Israel & Zionism, Naftali Bennett, Politics & Current Affairs