Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid offered Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a way to break the blackmail from his ‘permanent war’ coalition partners, free the hostages, and still stay in office. Supposedly, National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich have blackmailed Netanyahu into the ethnic cleansing of Gaza and, next, of the West Bank, by threatening to disband Netanyahu’s governing coalition. Lapid refused to join Netanyahu’s War Cabinet in October, but yesterday he reiterated his offer to Netanyahu to enter the government to replace them, in order to secure backing for a deal to free hostages still captive in Gaza.
Following a meeting with Netanyahu on Feb. 5, Lapid said:"I told the prime minister—I am not interested in portfolios, I was foreign minister, I was finance minister, I was prime minister. I am interested in one thing—returning the hostages. And if he needs a safety net of any kind from me—by entering the government, from the outside, in any way—just tell me. Because the important thing is to return the hostages.”