The interview focused mainly on Netanyahu’s personal life and his time living in the U.S. in his youth. Asked why he decided to leave the U.S. and return to Israel to serve in the military, Netanyahu explained that it didn’t even occur to him not to return. “I never thought of my life as separate from the life of my people. I think they’re intertwined. I always thought that you have to have a balance between individual ambition and collective responsibility,” he said.
Netanyahu added that when he did report for military duty, he brought with him to Israel what he described as American values. “Initiative, meritocracy, these are strong values. That’s the way you advance, is through merit; that society should be open to all to compete; that if you invest effort and ingenuity you are likely to succeed. These are strong American values that resonate in Jewish values,” he said.
The Israeli leader also addressed the challenges he faces as a politician in the modern age. “What you have on the internet is this thing of instant referendums,” he said. “You have political leaders who are constantly bombarded by polarized opinions….You’re elected, you’re given a period to exercise that power, and then they can throw you out.”
FULL VIDEO BELOW
(Israel Hayom/Exclusive to JNS.org)