Bennett Says Religion in Middle East No Longer Needs to be Defined by Brutality and Extremism
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett spoke to Bahraini students during his visit to the Gulf country Tuesday, February 15. Following are some of his remarks.
“I have come here to talk about the future. Your future. My people’s future. Our shared future. A future that chooses cooperation over conflict, hope over hostility, and friendship over fear. A future that is dependent on all the people sitting in this room.
There was once a tent — that was the first home of all of us: The tent of Abraham. Abraham, you know, he was not your average leader. He was a man of God, he was a man of the world. He wasn’t just a family man — but a businessman. A man who was both deeply attached to his faith, but at the same time — open to the world. Everyone was welcome in Abraham’s tent. It was wide open.
I think it is remarkable that the historic agreements between Israel and the Arab nations are called “the Abraham Accords”.
When I became Prime Minister, I was asked what I thought about the “Abraham accords”; I was asked if I planned to keep using this name — I said, “There could be no better name.” Religion in the Middle East no longer needs to be defined by brutality and extremism. For the like-minded leaders of the Abraham Accords, our faith was the glue that healed the wounds of our past — and strengthened the connection between us.
My Bahraini friends — together we sit in the great tent of Abraham. In this tent, no one is a stranger — we are all family.
Come and see for yourself what Israel is about. The Israeli people welcome you with open arms. The Middle East is changing and I am convinced that Israel’s growing friendships with Bahrain and other countries in the region — are a leading force in the profound change. Together, we are creating a new reality in the Middle East that will greatly benefit our people, our countries and the entire region.
We must seize the momentum of the historic Abraham accords, we must make the most of the opportunity we’ve been given.
וַיֹּאמֶר אַבְרָם אֶל לוֹט אַל נָא תְהִי מְרִיבָה בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶיךָ וּבֵין רֹעַי וּבֵין רֹעֶיךָ כִּי אֲנָשִׁים אַחִים אֲנָחְנו:
And Abraham said unto Lot — who your Quran refers to as ‘Lut’: “Let there be no strife between me and you, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brothers” (Gen. 13:8). We are brethren and together, God-willing, we can fulfill Abraham’s dream.” (INN / VFI News)