‘Irresponsible to remove key players Bennett & Erdan at this time of crisis’

Yossi Yehoshua, military correspondent for Yediot Aharonot, appealed to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday not to replace Defense Minister Naftali Bennett (Yamina) and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) at the height of the coronavirus crisis.

“With all due respect for your attempts to resolve the political crisis and establish an emergency government, the removal of Naftali Bennett from the Ministry of Defense and Gilad Erdan from the Ministry of Public Security at the height of the biggest crisis that we’ve ever had here is irresponsible,” he wrote.

“[This is the worst time for] the government to lose one of its key players, Naftali Bennett, and replace him with [a political appointee]. The price we’ll pay for this until the new appointee learns the ropes will be a big one, and the public should refuse to pay it.”

Yehoshua added that due to his handling of the coronavirus crisis, Bennett has made a name for himself even among his political opponents as a mature and responsible politician and one of the most serious and professional members of the government. He works around the clock and plans a few steps ahead, and he gives almost daily briefings at which he accepts questions from the public.

On Sunday, he presented his own plan for the future management of the crisis, in which he argues that decisions should not be based solely on the recommendations of experts from the field of medicine and that the current economic restrictions should not be made any harsher. Yehoshua noted that Bennett’s proposal includes a gradual easing of restrictions immediately after Passover, with schools reopening and the economy starting up again.

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