The secretary-general of World Bnei Akiva, Rabbi Noam Perel, called for revenge of the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens, the bodies of whom were found Monday.
"An entire nation and thousands of years of history demand revenge," Perel posted on his Facebook page, shortly after the bodies were found.
"The government of Israel is gathering for a revenge meeting that isn't a grief meeting. The landlord has gone mad at the sight of his sons' bodies. A government that turns the army of searchers to an army of avengers, an army that will not stop at 300 Philistine foreskins," Perel wrote, alluding to the biblical tale of David, who killed 200 Philistines and gave their foreskins to King Saul as the bride price for his daughter.
"The disgrace will be paid for with the blood of the enemy, not with our tears," Perel concluded.
Perel posted the same message in a Facebook group of World Bnei Akiva envoys.
Responses to Perel's post on his Facebook profile were predominantly negative, with many expressing their disappointment that the leader of the youth movement they were once a part of espouses such views.
"I'm ashamed of the movement I grew up in. I'm pained that you make me ashamed of Judaism, because you speak in its name," one comment read.
Others called Perel "insane" and a "Judo-Nazi," with one comparing the rabbi to Adolph Eichmann. Some comments ridiculed Perel's implied call for the mass-circumcision of Palestinians, with one alerting the rabbi to the fact that as most of the Palestinians are Muslims, they have already been circumcised.
Perel has since removed the post, saying in a new post that he was misunderstood.
Perel, 44, has been the secretary-general of World Bnei Akiva since 2012. A Zionist-religious youth movement, World Bnei Akiva has over 150 branches in dozens of countries worldwide. According to the movement's website, it is dedicated to fighting "intermarriage and social assimilation" by encouraging immigration to Israel, by "deepening Jewish identity" and by "strengthening and connecting the Jewish nation abroad to the values of religious-Zionism and the state of Israel."
Rabbi Perel is also the founder of the high-school yeshiva in the settlement of Susiya near Hebron, which he headed for many years.
On Tuesday evening, after the funerals of the three teens, Perel wrote: "We've returned from the funerals of our murdered with new and clear insights. Mountains of words don't do it for us anymore "
Opposition leader and Labor Chairman Isaac Herzog called on Minister Bennett to condemn Perel's statement. "This is serious incitement that a senior member of the Habayit Hayehudi must never say in the state of Israel," Herzog said, adding that if Bennett failed to issue a denouncement, he will urge the prime minister to sack him.
Dozens of social media groups calling for revenge of the murders of teens have been launched in the last two days, after the bodies were found. One of them, a Facebook group named "The people of Israel demands revenge," has already raked in over 35,000 likes.
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