Benzion Netanyahu — , the middle of three children. A copy of his evaluation from his 6th grade teacher Ruth Rubenstein indicated that Netanyahu was courteous, polite, and helpful; that his work was "responsible and punctual"; and that Netanyahu was friendly, disciplined, cheerful, brave, active and obedient.
To this day, he speaks fluent English, with a noticeable Philadelphia accent. This is a unit that changes the reality of our lives even though its actions are a secret. Although it is a small unit, it influences all branches of the military My service in the unit strengthened my understanding of the risks involved behind approving operations and the risks that fighters are taking on.
It is tangible and not theoretical for me. He trained as a combat soldier and served for five years in an elite special forces unit of the IDF, Sayeret Matkal. He took part in numerous cross-border assault raids during the —70 War of Attrition , rising to become a team-leader in the unit. He was wounded in combat on multiple occasions. Concurrently, he was studying towards a doctorate  in political science,   until his studies were broken off by the death of his brother in Operation Entebbe.
He was very bright. He knew what he wanted to do and how to get it done. This fact has been used by his political rivals to accuse him indirectly of a lack of Israeli national identity and loyalty. Yonatan was serving as the commander of Benjamin's former unit, the Sayeret Matkal, and died during the counter-terrorism hostage-rescue mission Operation Entebbe in which his unit rescued more than mostly Israeli hostages hijacked by terrorists and flown to the Entebbe Airport in Uganda.
In Netanyahu graduated near the top of his class at the MIT Sloan School of Management,  and was headhunted to be an economic consultant  for the Boston Consulting Group in Boston, Massachusetts, working at the company between and At the Boston Consulting Group, he was a colleague of Mitt Romney , with whom he formed a lasting friendship.
Romney remembers that Netanyahu at the time was: For 20 years the Arabs had both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and if self-determination, as they now say, is the core of the conflict, they could have easily established a Palestinian state.
Between and he ran the Jonathan Netanyahu Anti-Terror Institute,  a non-governmental organization devoted to the study of terrorism; the Institute held a number of international conferences focused on the discussion of international terrorism.
From to he was director of marketing for Rim Industries in Jerusalem. Schneerson , with whom he formed a relationship during the s. He referred to Schneerson as "the most influential man of our time".
In the Likud's internal elections, Netanyahu was placed fifth on the party list. Later on he was elected as a Knesset member of the 12th Knesset, and was appointed as a deputy of the foreign minister Moshe Arens , and later on David Levy.
Netanyahu and Levy did not cooperate and the rivalry between the two only intensified afterwards. During the Gulf War in early , the English-fluent Netanyahu emerged as the principal spokesman for Israel in media interviews on CNN and other news outlets. Shamir retired from politics shortly after the Likud's defeat in the elections.
Netanyahu hired American Republican political operative Arthur Finkelstein to run his campaign, and although the American style of sound bites and sharp attacks elicited harsh criticism from inside Israel, it proved effective the method was later copied by Ehud Barak during the election campaign in which Barak beat Netanyahu. When Netanyahu won the election , he became the youngest person in the history of the position and the first Israeli Prime Minister to be born in the State of Israel Yitzhak Rabin was born in Jerusalem, under the British Mandate of Palestine, prior to the founding of the Israeli state.
Netanyahu's victory over the pre-election favorite Shimon Peres surprised many. The main catalyst in the downfall of the latter was a wave of suicide bombings shortly before the elections; on 3 and 4 March , Palestinians carried out two suicide bombings , killing 32 Israelis, with Peres seemingly unable to stop the attacks.
Unlike Peres, Netanyahu did not trust Yasser Arafat and conditioned any progress at the peace process on the Palestinian National Authority fulfilling its obligations — mainly fighting terrorism, and ran with the campaign slogan "Netanyahu — making a safe peace". However, although Netanyahu won the election for Prime Minister, Labor won the Knesset elections , beating the Likud— Gesher — Tzomet alliance, meaning Netanyahu had to rely on a coalition with the ultra-Orthodox parties, Shas and UTJ whose social welfare policies flew in the face of his capitalistic outlook in order to govern.
Twenty-seventh government of Israel Netanyahu's first meeting with Palestinian President Yasser Arafat at the Erez crossing, 4 September A spate of suicide bombings reinforced the Likud position for security. Hamas claimed responsibility for most of the bombings.
One of his main points was disagreement with the Oslo premise that the negotiations should proceed in stages, meaning that concessions should be made to Palestinians before any resolution was reached on major issues, such as the status of Jerusalem , and the amending of the Palestinian National Charter. Oslo supporters had claimed that the multi-stage approach would build goodwill among Palestinians and would propel them to seek reconciliation when these major issues were raised in later stages.
Netanyahu said that these concessions only gave encouragement to extremist elements, without receiving any tangible gestures in return. He called for tangible gestures of Palestinian goodwill in return for Israeli concessions. Despite his stated differences with the Oslo Accords, Prime Minister Netanyahu continued their implementation, but his Premiership saw a marked slow-down in the peace process.
Prior to the meeting, the two leaders spoke by telephone. On their first meeting, Netanyahu said: Netanyahu and with his government. Netanyahu sitting with U. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat at the Wye River Memorandum , Eventually, the lack of progress of the peace process led to new negotiations which produced the Wye River Memorandum in which detailed the steps to be taken by the Israeli government and Palestinian Authority to implement the earlier Interim Agreement of As Prime Minister Netanyahu emphasized a policy of "three no s ": Under his watch, the government began selling its shares in banks and major state-run companies.
Netanyahu also greatly eased Israel's strict foreign exchange controls , enabling Israelis to take an unrestricted amount of money out of the country, open foreign bank accounts, hold foreign currency, and invest freely in other countries.
Throughout his term, Netanyahu was opposed by the political left wing in Israel and lost support from the right because of his concessions to the Palestinians in Hebron and elsewhere, and due to his negotiations with Arafat generally. Netanyahu lost favor with the Israeli public after a long chain of scandals involving his marriage and corruption charges. In , police recommended that Netanyahu be indicted on corruption charges for influence-peddling. He was accused of appointing an attorney general who would reduce the charges and prosecutors ruled that there was insufficient evidence to go to trial.
By law, Barak's resignation was supposed to lead to elections for the prime minister position only. Netanyahu insisted that general elections should be held, claiming that otherwise it would be impossible to have a stable government.
Netanyahu decided eventually not to run for the prime minister position, a move which facilitated the surprising rise to power of Ariel Sharon , who at the time was considered less popular than Netanyahu. Netanyahu was not present at the protest, having remained at Montreal's Ritz-Carlton Hotel throughout the duration. He later accused the activists of supporting terrorism and "mad zealotry".
Some pundits speculated that Sharon made the move because he deemed Netanyahu a political threat given his demonstrated effectiveness as Foreign Minister, and that by placing him in the Finance Ministry during a time of economic uncertainty, he could diminish Netanyahu's popularity. Netanyahu accepted the new appointment. Sharon and Netanyahu came to an agreement that Netanyahu would have complete freedom as Finance Minister and have Sharon back all of his reforms, in exchange for Netanyahu's silence over Sharon's management of Israel's military and foreign affairs.
Netanyahu claimed that a bloated public sector and excessive regulations were largely responsible for stifling economic growth. His plan involved a move toward more liberalized markets , although it was not without its critics. A host of state assets worth billions of dollars were privatized, including banks, oil refineries, the El Al national airline, and Zim Integrated Shipping Services.
The retirement ages for both men and women were raised, and currency exchange laws were further liberalized. Commercial banks were forced to spin off their long-term savings. In addition, Netanyahu attacked monopolies and cartels to increase competition.
As the Israeli economy started booming and unemployment fell significantly, Netanyahu was widely credited by commentators as having performed an 'economic miracle' by the end of his tenure.
He later modified the ultimatum and voted for the program in the Knesset, indicating immediately thereafter that he would resign unless a referendum was held within 14 days. His most recent attempt prior to this was in September when he had tried to hold early primaries for the position of the head of the Likud party, while the party held the office of Prime Minister — thus effectively pushing Ariel Sharon out of office.
The party rejected this initiative. Specifically, Netanyahu said, "This is not a relaxation, it's an Israeli agreement to the rearming of Hamas What are we getting for this? Opinion polls showed Likud in the lead, but with as many as a third of Israeli voters undecided.
A possible explanation for Likud's relatively poor showing is that some Likud supporters defected to Avigdor Lieberman 's Yisrael Beiteinu party. Netanyahu, however, claimed victory on the basis that right-wing parties won the majority of the vote, and on 20 February , Netanyahu was designated by Israeli President Shimon Peres to succeed Ehud Olmert as prime minister, and began his negotiations to form a coalition government.
Despite right wing parties winning a majority of 65 seats in the Knesset , Netanyahu preferred a broader centrist coalition and turned to his Kadima rivals, chaired by Tzipi Livni, to join his government. This time it was Livni's turn to decline to join, with a difference of opinion on how to pursue the peace process being the stumbling block. Netanyahu did manage to entice a smaller rival, the Labour party, chaired by Ehud Barak, to join his government, giving him a certain amount of centrist tone.
Netanyahu presented his cabinet for a Knesset "Vote of Confidence" on 31 March The 32nd Government was approved that day by a majority of 69 lawmakers to 45 with five abstaining and the members were sworn in. On 14 June, ten days after Obama's Cairo speech, Netanyahu gave a speech at Bar-Ilan University in which he endorsed a "Demilitarized Palestinian State", though said that Jerusalem must remain the unified capital of Israel. He also argued the right for a "natural growth" in the existing Jewish settlements in the West Bank while their permanent status is up to further negotiation.
Senior Palestinian official, Sereb Ereket, said that the speech had "closed the door to permanent status negotiations" due to Netanyahu's declarations on Jerusalem, refugees and settlements. The prime minister's military secretary, Maj. Meir Kalifi, later reported Netanyahu had visited a security facility in Israel. The announced partial freeze had no significant effect on actual settlement construction, according to an analysis by the major Israeli daily Haaretz. Government that acts such as this thwart the peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
The Israeli government's announcement occurred during a visit by U. Vice-President Joe Biden and the U. Mitchell and Mahmoud Abbas at the start of the direct talks , 2 September In September , Netanyahu agreed to enter direct talks , mediated by the Obama administration , with the Palestinians for the first time in a long while. On 27 September, the month settlement freeze ended, and the Israeli government approved new construction in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem.
Responding, the Likud party defended Netanyahu by saying that most Israelis supported the Prime Minister and that he had broad support in the United States. President Bill Clinton had privately agreed to release Pollard. Hundreds of thousands of people protested Israel's high cost of living throughout the country. In response, Netanyahu appointed the Trajtenberg Committee , headed by professor Manuel Trajtenberg , to examine the problems and propose solutions.
The committee submitted recommendations to lower the high cost of living in September