Former Mossad director, Efraim Halevy, reveals that Israel’s top generals want Hamas to run Gaza
Efraim Halevy, former director of Israel’s national intelligence agency, Mossad, speaks with Al Jazeera English’s UpFront:
- Says appointing Avigdor Lieberman as defence minister “heralds the beginning of a countdown of the end of the administration of Mr. Netanyahu”
- Agrees that Israel’s current government is the most right-wing in history: “It’s a fair description”
- Believes there will be “no two-state solution in the foreseeable future” and accuses Benjamin Netanyahu of “fear-mongering”
- Calls on Israel to accept “the political reality of Hamas” and says “Yes” he’d be willing to negotiate with Hamas if asked by the Israeli government
- Reveals that Israel’s top generals want Hamas to run Gaza because “the best situation… is that Hamas should be there rather than anybody else.”
- Admits that unfortunately “Yes” there is a link between Israel’s occupation and Palestinian violence and that Israelis should “expect” that Palestinians feel they “have to fight against it.”
In an interview with Al Jazeera English’s current affairs show, ‘UpFront’, Efraim Halevy, the former head of Mossad, says the appointment of Avigdor Lieberman as Israel’s defense minister could mark the beginning of the end for Prime Minister Netanyahu’s government.
“I believe the events of the last few days with the impending appointment of Mr. Lieberman heralds the beginning of a countdown of the end of the administration of Mr. Netanyahu,” Halevy told ‘UpFront’ host Mehdi Hasan.
When asked if he thought the current government was the most right-wing Israel had ever seen, he responded, “It’s a fair description.”
Asked if there was a connection between Israel’s ongoing occupation of the West Bank and the recent spate of Palestinian attacks on Israelis, Halevy replied: “Unfortunately, yes… I think one has to admit that since we are in control of the West Bank and since there is no political movement to move the situation… one should expect unfortunately that there will be people who think that they have to rise up and have to fight against it.”
Halevy, who served under prime ministers Netanyahu, Barak and Sharon and was both head of Israeli intelligence and head of Israel’s national Security Council, called on the Israeli government to “accept the political reality of Hamas”.
He also acknowledged that he would be willing to take on an official role negotiating with Hamas. “If it was something I was asked to do, yes,” he said. “I don’t think that they would necessarily choose me,” he added.
Halevy was also asked to respond to claims that Israel’s security forces “mow the lawn” by periodically attacking Gaza, as a substitute for a political solution. “I think it’s the truth,” he replied.
“Let me let you into a secret,” he continued. “If you go now to Israel and you speak to the commanders in the field, and the IDF…every brigade commander who has been commanding a unit opposite the Gaza Strip believes the best situation for Israel at this point is that Hamas should be there rather than anybody else.”
“I think it is fair to say that there is no two-state solution in the foreseeable future,” the former Mossad chief told ‘UpFront’ host Mehdi Hasan. Asked by Hasan if such a solution would happen on Prime Minister Netanyahu’s watch, Halevy replied: “I doubt it”.
Halevy labelled Netanyahu a “fear monger” who “uses fear in a way one should not use [it]”.
This UpFront interview with Efraim Halevy will air this Friday May 27th at 19:30 GMT