Lieberman stepped down as Israel’s defence minister on Wednesday in an act of protest against Netanyahu’s Gaza ceasefire, which he called a “capitulation to terror.” This comes as yet another controversial statement in his more than two-decade-long political career – but perhaps not the most bombastic so far.
The 60-year-old Avigdor Lieberman entered the Israeli political arena in 1993, when he masterminded Netanyahu’s Likud party leadership. He then became Likud’s director-general and even founded his own right-wing party, Yisrael Beitenu, in 1999. Lieberman has occupied a number of ministerial posts, including in the ministry of foreign affairs, and has twice served as Israel’s deputy PM. He had plenty of time to express his hardline views and launch fiery rhetoric — and has hardly missed a chance to do so.
The Palestinian Issue: Dare I Axe
Addressing a rally ahead of the 2015 Israeli legislative election, Lieberman said that the Arab Israelis that oppose the State of israel should have their heads cut off.
“Those who are with us should receive everything. Those against us, it cannot be helped, we must lift up an axe and behead them — otherwise we will not survive here.”
Paying Palestinians to Move Out?
Lieberman has long advocated the separation of Israeli Arabs and Jews. In November 2014, he suggested that Palestinians should be given money to move to a future Palestinian state.