Likud-Beytenu Knesset candidate Moshe Feiglin on Friday called on soldiers to disobey orders to dismantle West Bank settlements, prompting a fierce rebuke by his party.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s party rejected Feiglin’s statements advocating insubordination, saying the views he expressed on Channel 2 on Friday morning did not represent those of the party or the prime minister.
“We regard insubordination as a dangerous phenomenon that harms the state, the IDF, and the nationalist camp,” the Likud-Beytenu campaign office said. “It grants legitimacy to insubordination by the left-wing, which is likely to endanger the operation of settlements.”
“The prime minister opposes uprooting [settlements] and doesn’t intend to evacuate settlements,” it added.
In an interview on Channel 2 Friday morning, Feiglin, No. 22 on the Likud-Beytenu Knesset slate, expressed support for insubordination in the IDF when it comes to settlements.
“Sometimes it’s mandatory not to follow orders,” he said, citing as an example the anecdote in last week’s Torah portion in which Israelite midwives refused to carry out Pharaoh’s orders to kill Israelite babies.
The issue of politically-motivated insubordination by IDF troops was raised three weeks ago when Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett said that if commanded to participate in the evacuation of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, he would opt for the path of conscientious objection.
“If I am ever given an order to evacuate a Jew from his home… personally, my conscience won’t allow me to do it; I’ll ask my commander to grant me an exemption, [but] I won’t call for [mass] insubordination,” Bennett said during a heated conversation with Channel 2 interviewer Nissim Mishal. He said he would go to jail rather than follow the order.
Politicians from both sides of the spectrum lambasted Bennett for his comments, and Netanyahu reacted to his statement saying “anyone who upholds insubordination will not serve in my Cabinet.”