Israeli opposition leader and former Prime Minister Yair Lapid is expected to visit the U.S. to mobilize the Jewish community against the Netanyahu-led government.
Lapid came in for condemnation from government members following the reports that he will try to enlist U.S. groups in his domestic political battles.
Lapid already has been accused of crossing a red line when it comes to the stridency of his opposition to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, having called on local authorities to flout the government’s directives in connection with the appointment of a far-right Knesset member to a department at the Ministry of Education.
Netanyahu then accused Lapid for “attempting to incite rebellion among army officers and mayors against the elected government under our leadership.”
“I call on the opposition to behave responsibly. We have one country, one army and one people. We must not harm them,” Netanyahu tweeted on Dec. 2.
Lapid dismissed Netanyahu’s criticism, saying, “If you think what I’ve been saying the last few days is rebellious, I have news for you, you ain’t seen nothing yet.”
It’s not clear whether Lapid will make the trip to the U.S. given a brewing political battle at home involving judicial reform and the fact that he has already come under fire for taking a Paris vacation this weekend with his wife.
Lapid felt compelled to write on his Facebook page: “I paid for the plane tickets with my own money, we paid for the small apartment near the Eiffel Tower, and also the meals and the traditional gift for [our daughter] Yaeli. I understand that there are those who suspect that I enjoyed myself. They are right. We both needed this trip like air to breathe.
“On Sunday I return, to continue the fight with all our might, until we bring down this terrible government. There is only one condition that must be met for it to succeed: that we stop bullying each other, stop performing purity tests on each other, and instead fight together against the real danger: a dark government with a weak prime minister, which threatens to destroy common life in Israel.”