National Security Council chief v. Israeli diplomatic corpssnapped at Israeli diplomats over the timing of the announcement to build at E-1 during a briefing on Monday, and the Israeli diplomats snapped back.
Amidror then began to answer, stopped, and chastised the envoys.
"I don't think that in the British Foreign Office they would clap at a question that hinted at criticism of the government's policy," he said. "You would not have a situation where there would be applause in the State Department at a question that hinted at criticism of President Obama's policies."Although this article makes an attempt to make it appear that this was not a factor in this case, I have mentioned many times that the Foreign Ministry rank and file is crawling with Leftists. It's going to take a long time to get the rot out of the foreign ministry....
This exchange led Ran Curiel, a ministry deputy director general, to clarify that the applause was not against the government's policies, but rather because the question was one that was on the mind of many in the room. "It is possible this reflected a degree of frustration because we want to explain the government's policies, but are not always given the tools to do so," he said.
To this Amidror replied, "Gentlemen, don't get confused. You are representatives of the government. If this does not suit you, either go into politics or resign. I am a government functionary; the chief of general staff is a government functionary. Our job is to give advice and at the end the leaders make the decisions. If you think there is a problem with the policy, you can express that in closed forums."
One diplomatic official explained afterward that many of the envoys feel they were not properly briefed on the reason for the E1 decision, the timing of it, and what the objectives were of the government's settlement policy
The government's decision to respond to the Palestinian Authority's move at the UN by announcing plans for new building and planning in the settlements was taken against the foreign ministry's advice, which was that such a move would be counterproductive since it would deflect the world's attention away from the Palestinian abrogation of the Oslo accord, and onto the settlement issue.
The Prime Minister's Office had no response to the Amidror incident. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is scheduled to address the envoys on Thursday.