MK Anastassia Michaeli of Yisrael Beiteinu threw a glass of water at an Arab MK who called her a "fascist woman" during an argument in the Knesset on Monday.
The Knesset Education, Culture and Sports Committee was discussing the Education Ministry's decision to reprimand an Arab school for sending students to participate in a human rights march in Tel Aviv last month. The decision was first reported by Haaretz.
The argument erupted when MK Danny Danon (Likud ) said the principal should be fired, as politics should be kept out of schools.
"Your fascism and racism are diverting the discussion into side streets when the issue is a human rights march, just to get headlines from the fascists and the Israeli right," retorted MK Raleb Majadele (Labor ). "No Jewish school that participated in such an event would be called in for an inquiry."
"Shut up!" Michaeli interjected. "You're inciting against the state."
"This is the legislature, and Michaeli won't silence me," Majadele said. "This isn't the Yisrael Beiteinu faction, and this matter won't end here - I intend to take it into other channels, so that this incident will set an example for the State of Israel. No one can take the law into his own hands and treat a school as he pleases. This is a moral and ideological issue of the highest order. We won't let this fascism take over our home. And I also know how to deal with a fascist woman."
"That's disrespect for the status of women and the Knesset," Michaeli shot back. "We'll investigate this in the [Knesset] Ethics Committee. Go learn some ethics."
A few minutes later, Michaeli suddenly walked over to Majadele and threw a glass of water at his face. She then stormed out of the room.
Majadele promptly turned to Ethics Committee chairman Alex Miller, also of Yisrael Beiteinu, and demanded that he denounce her behavior. Other MKs present did the same, and also asked him to file a complaint with his panel on the Education Committee's behalf. But Miller refused.
Later, he did issue a statement condemning Michaeli's behavior. But in it, he blamed Majadele for "inflaming tempers and causing this act to occur."
Michaeli, too, later issued a statement - in which she doubled down. "The days are past when a man could curse a woman in public, insult her and treat her violently," she wrote. "Times have changed. I won't give anyone, honored MK though he be, the privilege of acting violently, certainly not in the Knesset. In general, I think water is an excellent tool for cooling off. And for MK Majadele, water was a small price to pay - being arrested for violence against women would be much worse."
But her faction issued a rare statement condemning her behavior - as did other MKs from across the political spectrum - and Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin filed a complaint against her with the Ethics Committee.
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