Netanyahu's Far-right Ally: Israel Belongs to the Jews. Arabs Who Don't Recognize That Won't Stay Here

Arab lawmaker Ahmad Tibi responds to Bezalel Smotrich's statement on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day. In German

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Religious Zionism party leader Bezalel Smotrich at Knesset, this week.
Religious Zionism party leader Bezalel Smotrich at Knesset, this week. Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg
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Haaretz

The chairman of the far-right Religious Zionism party, lawmaker Bezalel Smotrich, wrote on Wednesday that he will make sure that Arabs who do not recognize the Jewish people's legitimate rule over the Land of Israel “will not remain here.” His comments came on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day.

In the last election Benjamin Netanyahu threw his weight behind the Religious Zionism party. The party, which includes a Kahanist faction, ended up gaining six seats in the Knesset partly thanks to his backing.

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In a tweet, Smotrich wrote: “I heard that after Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, may he live a long life, said that a true Muslim must know that the Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish People, Ahmad Tibi opened his mouth against him. So Ahmad, a true Muslim must know that the Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people, and over time Arabs like you, who do not recognize that, will not remain here. Rabbi Shmuel and tens of thousands of his students, including us, will make sure that happens.”

Tibi tweeted in response: “Oy Bezalel, you were and have remained an over-excited hilltop youth. The fact that you won’t be a minister unless you rely on Arabs gives me comfort. A lot of comfort. But I’m an Arab who doesn’t care about you. And doesn’t want to convince you of anything, and not the rabbi who said the land vomits out the Arabs,” Tibi added in German: “Du bist ein Rassist (You are a racist).”

Earlier today on a Radio 103 FM interview, Tibi commented on what Rabbi Eliyahu said in the past, that the “land vomits out the Arabs,” and called Eliyahu a “racist garbage can, human waste. I have contempt for him, a rabbi does not say such things. And a sheikh that would say this about Jews also needs to be condemned.”

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