Former Kach Members to Hold Purim Party at Goldstein Grave

Nadav Shragai
Ha'aretz Correspondent
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail

Former activists from the outlawed Kach party have announced a plan to meet Sunday evening, the eve of the Purim holiday, for "celebrations" of the memory of Dr. Baruch Goldstein, at his graveside at the entrance to Kiryat Arba, next to the West Bank city of Hebron.

A statement released by the movement "Friends of Baruch," founded by several former Kach activists from the Kiryat Arba area and the Golan Heights, said that the event would be "celebrations for the righteous holy doctor, Baruch Goldstein."

Goldstein killed 29 Muslim worshippers on February 25, 1994 when he stormed into the Ibrahimi mosque in Hebron and opened fire on the congregants, before he was killed by the crowd.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, a former Kach activist, said that he and his friends had wanted to hold a Purim party at Goldstein's grave last year, and even received authorization to do so. However, once the event became well-publicized, the police reversed the decision and closed off Goldstein's grave in order to prevent the "festivities" being held.

"The purpose of the celebrations," said Ben-Gvir, "is to mark the memory of Dr. Goldstein, in opposition to the wave of left-wingers who... are trying to hurt his memory in all kinds of ways... Goldstein is a saint, and what he did was a holy thing. We are respectful of his memory. He did a great thing, a holy thing."