21st Century Wire
Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has caused controversy across the world following his racist reply to an Israeli TV stars comments on ‘Arabs’ in Israel, as well as his decision to partner up with a Jewish extremist Party for the upcoming elections.
But why has Netanyahu decided to suddenly behave like this and more importantly, what do his actions say about Israeli society?
The latest controversies of Benjamin Netanyahu began hitting the headlines this Saturday, when Netanyahu replied to the instagram comments of Israeli TV star, Rotem Sela, who questioned the language used by Israeli Culture Minister, Miri Regev, when referring to Arab parties in Israel. Netanyahu lashed out, claiming that Israel “is not a country of all its citizens” and is for “Jews alone”.
Roughly 25% of Israeli citizenship owners are Palestinians – or as Israel describes them “Arab Israelis” – and are second class citizens.
The Israeli PM is also under fire for working to secure an alliance between the Parties, Jewish Home- National Union and the Otzma Yehudit Party, which he will form a government with if he wins the April elections.
Otzma Yehudit finds its ideological origins in the former Israeli Kach Party, which openly called for the expulsion of all Arab citizens and the annexation of all land from the Euphrates River and Mediterranean Sea into Israel. I say former because the Party was once part of the Israeli Knesset, but is now outlawed in Israel as being too extreme.
Otzma Yehudit is most popular amongst Israeli illegal settlers in the West Bank, many fear that it will bring an even more extreme element to the already fascist acting Israeli government.
Evidently Mr. Netanyahu’s statements are racist and his alignment with such a far-right extremist group is deeply troubling, but why has he done this?
To address the comments of Netanyahu, firstly we have to understand that it isn’t the first time he has said something like this. For example, in 2015 during his election campaign Netanyahu published a video across his social media pages, stressing that “Arabs” are swarming to the voting booths and that “the right wing government is under threat”.
The Israeli PM’s statements on Saturday were completely unnecessary, serving one purpose and one purpose only, to win favour from potential voters.
The propping up of the far-right Otzma Yehudit party, also fits into Netanyahu’s plans as a way to win over voters. But what does this say about the Israeli society, if this is what a politician feels the need to do in order to win over voters? Surely it shows that, at least Netanyahu believes, Israeli society is racist.
In addition to this, US Senator, Lindsey Graham, added yesterday to Netanyahu’s list of extremist surprises for his election campaign, vowing that the United States would recognize officially Israel’s presence in the illegally annexed Golan Heights region. The Golan Heights is internationally recognised as part of Syria and was illegally stolen from Syria in 1967.
But it doesn’t end there, today, following an invasion of the area by Israeli settlers, Israel decided to close the Al-Aqsa Mosque, arresting and physically assaulting all those who resisted.
There is no doubt that more horrors will be unveiled in the coming days and weeks of Netanyahu’s election campaign, with two Palestinians dead in Gaza yesterday and two more killed in the West Bank today.
So again I will pose the question, if Netanyahu has to run a campaign, based upon racism, oppression and killing, in order to impress his voters, what does this say about the mentality of those living as part of the Israeli regime.
Author Robert Inlakesh is a special contributor to 21WIRE and European correspondent for Press TV. He has reported from on the ground in occupied Palestine. See more of his work here.
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