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Netanyahu's Silence on His Supporters' Sickening Action Is Even More Malicious Than His Words

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Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport, early November 2020.
Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport, early November 2020.Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg

The first reports of a demonstration outside the house of a bereaved family in Caesarea appeared Tuesday, before midnight. The sickening videos appeared the next morning on all the news websites. The president, the defense minister, the head of the opposition and others from the left hurried to condemn what happened, as is appropriate. The person in whose honor the demonstration took place, whose honor protesters wanted to redeem, waited until 12:50 P.M.

We’ve become accustomed to Netanyahu’s silences. They are often more evil than his words. They all have a malicious, calculated intent. A silent wink and nod. The champion tweeter, with vast social media resources at his disposal for spewing responses, tweets and video clips, took his precious time.

The naïve among us who were wondering about the meaning of the prime minister’s silence got their answer on his son Yair’s Twitter account: “The Farkash family hosts anarchists on their roof every week. They yell and curse the prime minister, even mentioning his deceased brother, Yoni,” he tweeted at 10:26. “But the right to demonstrate in the other direction? Heaven forbid! They’re saints.”

We already know that Yair dictates the tone. He’s the real head of Netanyahu’s government. His attitude is combative and uncompromising, and his father obeys. Otherwise, testify veterans acquainted with the doings at Balfour Street, he gets hell when he comes home. As noted, only hours later did someone release their grip and the anticipated response showed up.

It too should be examined. The Likud is behind it, not, heaven forbid, the prime minister. As usual, it begins with a reminder that he is a “bereaved brother.” It all revolves around him. And then comes a condemnation, much feebler than others we’ve heard, and then the mendacious symmetry, “This is how everyone, left and right, should conduct themselves.”

Likud activist Orly Lev at a pro-Netanyahu demonstration in Holon, October 2020.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

And then, so we’re not left with a bitter taste in our mouths, comes the castigation of the demonstrators (from Saturday night, not Tuesday), for daring to demonstrate less than 300 meters away from the house of a “public official” (yes, he means the house in Caesarea that’s soaking up hundreds of thousands of shekels of public funds on the pretext that the prime minister uses it for work, just like at Balfour). Needless to say, the feeble condemnation did not include terms such as anarchists, disseminators of hate. These are reserved for other segments of the population.

The attributions, framing and text smell of Junior, with the stench rising over this entity called “the family.” But, truth be told, one can understand the prime minister. The demonstration’s organizer, a Likud activist called Orly Lev, is a Balfour darling. “A soulful presence,” she’s called there. She was among those invited to the official residence on the day Netanyahu’s trial began, pouring out her love for him. She’s a walking puddle of scum, full of slanders and lies, libel and evil, all directed at the family’s enemies: Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit and prosecutor Liat Ben-Ari.

Lev was questioned by police after disseminating a fake video clip that documented, she claimed, Ben-Ari’s son hitting a policeman. It’s no wonder that her actions gained her affection in the eyes of the family. It’s also no wonder that the minister for the security of Balfour, Amir Ohana, invited her to a meeting, lauding her for doing “good work.” So, would Bibi say anything bad about her? About Orly? The term “birds of a feather” was meant for her and the Netanyahu family.

He had enough time to call the Farkash family, his neighbors, and express regret over what happened. Their pilot son, Tom, was killed in the Second Lebanon War, on whose smoldering embers Netanyahu began his political comeback. After all, he did find time to call Charlie Azaria, the father of the soldier who shot and killed a dying Palestinian. Undoubtedly, they’d talk to him politely and kindly. He won’t do it because human values, basic norms of civilized people, which he did possess once upon a time, have gone, making way for patterns of behavior such as those we saw Tuesday in Caesarea or, in short, for Bibi-ism.

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