‘Haaretz’ says Netanyahu could incite ‘another political assassination’ (as ‘NYT’ runs cutesy election coverage)

US Politics
on 17 Comments

The lead editorial in yesterday’s Haaretz is titled: “Netanyahu Resorts to Accusations of Treason—Again.”  Here are some excerpts:

“As Election Day nears and the criticism of him mounts, Benjamin Netanyahu is returning to the troubling and threatening patterns of behavior that characterized him during his early years in politics and his first term as prime minister. Once again, he is spouting conspiracy theories and accusing his political rivals of treason.” “His response returned him to the days when he stood on a balcony in Jerusalem’s Zion Square as the streets below seethed with murderous incitement against then-Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. The victim of his incitement this time was Tzipi Livni, whom Netanyahu accused of being “a danger to the country” …From there, he went on to claim that Livni and her colleague at the head of the Zionist Union ticket, Isaac Herzog, seek to establish a Hamas-run state in the West Bank…Netanyahu’s lies, twisted and worrying though they be, pale beside his depiction of the leaders of a rival party as abettors of terror and dangerous to the country.”

“Netanyahu can’t offer a straight response to substantive criticism of his performance, so he responds to it instead by denying the legitimacy of the people running against him. Such behavior is characteristic of a leader who specializes in incitement, and is liable to lead to another political assassination. It provides yet another answer to the question of why Israel’s government must be replaced.”

However, the New York Times evidently is not a bit worried about the future of Israel.  Yesterday’s lead story on Israel, by the ever-predictable Isabel Kershner, is titled: “As Vote Nears, a Not-So-Serious Battle for ‘Likes.’”  The story begins:

“With a month to go before Israel’s elections on March 17, the race has turned into a context of cheeky online videos.”

The rest of the  story describes the dueling and mostly cutesy campaign slogans, videos, and social media postings of the contending candidates.

To be sure, the last paragraph of the story does quote Israeli President Reuven Rivlin’s criticism of the campaign for not addressing the serious issues.  But that hardly makes up for the preceding light-hearted  tone and trivializing of the issues of the long piece.

This piece first appeared yesterday on Slater’s site, with the headline “Haaretz vs. the New York Times, Chapter 19,243”

About Jerome Slater

Jerome Slater is a professor (emeritus) of political science and now a University Research Scholar at the State University of New York at Buffalo. He has taught and written about U.S. foreign policy and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for nearly 50 years, both for professional journals (such as International Security, Security Studies, and Political Science Quarterly) and for many general periodicals. He writes foreign policy columns for the Sunday Viewpoints section of the Buffalo News. And his website it www.jeromeslater.com.

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17 Responses

  1. pabelmont
    February 21, 2015, 11:34 am

    All to the good. Let us imagine some fireball does assassinate one or both of those leaders. Then the attention of the world will focus on Netanyahu and the Israeli system. Notice: no arrest and prosecution for “incitement” of Netanyahu. Not yet. After all, the police etc, all work for him and his present ministers.

    BTW, isn’t this what Giuliani was doing w.r.t. Obama recently? Obama, he said, doesn’t love America the way he does. Is Giuliani accusing Obama of treason? Maybe not quite. But what will the right-wing crazies on Fox News do next, with this?

    • Mooser
      February 21, 2015, 4:43 pm

      Keep in mind that Netanyahoo has a free newspaper, published by Adelson, with a top distribution in Israel (such as it is) to back him up and puff him.

      • Real Jew
        February 22, 2015, 1:41 am

        Mooser let that idiot adelson spend more of his millions on free newspapers and ccampaign donations to any scum willing to say the most despicable anti arab islamaphobic shit possible. His influence is mostly irrelevant considering every candidate he sponsors at least in the states fail. Hopefully that momentum will rub off on bibi this time around. Enshalla

    • David Doppler
      February 21, 2015, 6:55 pm

      Yes, Pabelmont, it is the same, and reminds me of the deep South in the Sixties, where, if, in white society, one dared to suggest some merit to the Civil Rights protesters, you were dismissed as a “N*****-lover,” or asked if that is who you were? It’s a technique to change the subject from Obama’s topic, how to contain the dogs of war in the Middle East, to the subject of proposed character defects of the critic, how much do you love America, or how much do you love those African Americans, which is irrelevant to the debate, and, in fact, turns the debate into a personal confrontation. It is akin to, although not as funny as, Arnold Schwarzzennegger’s description of Democratic economic consultants as “economic girly men.”

      And you’re right, Mooser, Adelson is not only feeding the Israeli population Likud propaganda, he proposes to force the Sulzburger family to sell the NYTimes to him and Haim Saban to “make it more Israel-friendly.”

      It’s not easy, but I think the appropriate response is to attack the attacker for trying to change the subject. “Why are you trying to change the subject? Did the Iraq War turn out as you planned? Did it have the ‘positive reverberations throughout the Middle East’ that Netanyahu ‘guaranteed.’ Would you have us invade and occupy all the Islamic nations of the world until they all decide that their Western and Israeli occupiers and the Quislings they install really are better colonial masters than they could come up with on their own? Does one have to hate America to question your dangerously ill-thought-out approach to containing rather than continuing to amplify the threat of Islamic extremism?”

  2. a blah chick
    February 21, 2015, 12:51 pm

    “From there, he went on to claim that Livni and her colleague at the head of the Zionist Union ticket, Isaac Herzog, seek to establish a Hamas-run state in the West Bank”

    The psychosis runs deep in that man.

  3. American
    February 21, 2015, 1:11 pm

    Netanyahu and Co. have lost it, their US minons have also lost it…..accusing US legistators of being traitors to Israel?…gawd…gets more orwellian every day.

    And they keep upping the anty against Obama. Are they trying to inspire an assassination of Obama also–as the zionist nut case of the Atlanta Jewish Journal suggested a few years ago?

    Ex-envoy to US: White House boycott of AIPAC tantamount to boycott of alliance with Israel

    http://www.jpost.com/Israel-

    “Former ambassador to the US Michael Oren addressed on Saturday media reports that the White House may boycott the upcoming AIPAC conference in an attempt to undermine Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Congress address, calling AIPAC a “strategic asset” to the State of Israel whose status “must not be harmed.” “Should the American government choose to boycott AIPAC,” Oren said, “it will essentially choose to boycott its strategic alliance with Israel.””

    The way I see Obama has two choices right now………..give in to the lobby and Israel or kick their asses to the curb.
    He should deploy and plant even more damaging info on Israeli betrayal and damage to the US—-make it explosive info the media cant resist even if they have the zios come on to scream anti semitism and deny it……there’s plenty of it to release that would infuriate americans.
    Wouldnt hurt either for some zionist agent names to be dropped in these leaks.

    Call him and tell him to go for it—–202-456-1111

  4. just
    February 21, 2015, 2:14 pm

    Is there no end to Netanyahu’s hubristic delusions? An inciter, and an egomaniacal and inveterate liar.

    “8:28 P.M. Likud video compares Netanyahu to Ben-Gurion: If Ben-Gurion listened to U.S. State Department, would we be here today?

    A new video released by Likud saturday evening compares present-day Israel to 1948, drawing parallels to Netanyahu’s Congress speech and the U.S. State Department’s opposition to Israel’s 1948 declaration of independence.

    Opening to a background of warlike music, in stark black-and-white images, the text reads “In 1948, Ben-Gurion stood before a fateful decision: The creation of the State of Israel.”

    “The U.S. secretary of state firmly objected. Ben-Gurion – contrary to the State Department’s position – announced the establishment of the state,” the ad continues. “Would we be here today had Ben-Gurion not done the right thing?”

    The 30-second clip ends with the slogan “Only Likud. Only Netanyahu.””

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/israel-election-2015/1.643494

    As if it’s all worked out so well for Israel so far.

  5. eGuard
    February 21, 2015, 8:33 pm

    the New York Times evidently is not a bit worried about the future of Israel — me neither. Why worry whether Israel can or can not infect their own ass?

    As Mondoweiss stated earlier: Let Netanyahu win! That will not reduce the level of abuse of Palestine & Palestinians, but it will shorten the time Palestinians are kept in this Guantanamo II.

    BDS.

  6. Blownaway
    February 21, 2015, 10:13 pm

    From Ukraine to Palestine NYT reporting has become a race to appeal to the lowest common denominator. Its a continuation of the dumbing down of America. It’s an effort to appeal to the elite 1% that support their advertising. In both cases they outright lie about the facts as if no one will ever check. And the sad truth is most never will. Once the free press is no longer free this country will slip far and fast. Today the internet is the only free press we have, all that stands against total control of information. The wars are buried and serious criticism of Washington suppressed. That leaves the net, only the net, without which we would know nothing.

  7. crone
    February 21, 2015, 10:59 pm

    Richard Silverstein has piece up about Bennett…

    After Gay Activists Assaulted, Naftali Bennett Claims Leftist Conspiracy to Assassinate Him

    Yesterday, Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi Party held a festive celebration in support of its election campaign. Recently, a number of candidates on its Knesset list have made disparaging comments about gays, specifically denouncing gay marriage, which is still prohibited in Israel (where the Orthodox rabbinate largely controls matters related to marriage and divorce).

    In response, Israel gay activists have begun shadowing Bennett and his Party events to raise awareness of both gay rights and Bayit Yehudi’s rejection of them. At last night’s rally, when activists began shouting slogans in favor of gay marriage and displayed a rainbow flag, Party thugs attacked them viciously. You can see part of the assault in the video. What you don’t see is Lilach Ben David being punched in the face and all over her body in an effort to muzzle her.

    That wasn’t terribly surprising given the extraordinary level of violence in Israeli political discourse (including a number of assassinations over the decades). What was surprising was Bayit Yehudi’s response to the assault. Instead of acknowledging what happened and the role Party members played in the attack, it spun a tale of a leftist cabal conniving to assassinate Bennett. Though the protesters were entirely non-violent, the Party accused them of fomenting violence:

    Habayit Hayehudi responded that it was the left that was responsible for the violence at the event. “We call on the leaders of the left to denounce the violence of their activists before it is too late and the violence of the left causes irreversible damage.”

    The party said that its leader, Bennett, is currently the country’s only politician who is being advised by security officials not to attend events where left-wing activists are present. “The left has not learned a thing from the murder of [Yitzhak] Rabin and the incitement that it is carrying out at the moment will have harsh consequences while Bougie and Tzipi [Zionist Union leaders Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni] are silent.”

    more at http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2015/02/20/after-gay-activists-assaulted-naftali-bennett-claims-leftist-conspiracy-to-assassinate-him/

    —————-

    after reading Slater’s article and Silverstein’s… seems to me someone is up to some political dirty tricks…

    • crone
      February 21, 2015, 11:23 pm

      Poll at Haaretz today indicates Zionist Union Party is edging ahead of Likud…

      Maybe Bibi is losing his teflon coating?

      • Kay24
        February 22, 2015, 6:22 am

        This article says Bibi has hired a top defense attorney to face his corruption charges, and that the Israeli people do not seem to be bothered by corruption and misuse of nation’s funds. Low standards. It seems Sara needs a lot of makeup, and too lazy to clean up their own home, herself.
        When someone is guilty, they usually hire a high priced attorney. I wonder if Adelson will pay for this, or the GOP. Mr. and Mrs. Sara have been accused of misusing tax payer money, throughout the years. Bad habits.

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/21/benjamin-netanyahu-corruption_n_6727022.html?ir=WorldPost

  8. just
    February 22, 2015, 6:31 am

    Gideon Levy nails it… again! He is not only writing about Lapid, but also the 95%.

    (I linked to Lapid’s article and letter in The Guardian on 2/19 because I thought it egomaniacal and just plain wrong…)

    “The pundits are predicting that Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid will be the surprise of this election, the dark horse. So here’s a job for him in the next government, which he will undoubtedly join: minister of propaganda.

    Israel needs a propaganda minister, and no one is better suited to the job than Lapid. True, the merchandise is staid and ridiculous, and nobody is seriously buying it. But that’s the way it is with propaganda.

    Last Thursday, Lapid tried to sell cheap Israeli propaganda to the readers of British daily The Guardian. It was an insult to their intelligence.

    In contrast to the readers – especially the female ones – of his columns in Yedioth Ahronoth, it is unlikely any that Brits will be hanging his “Why no petition to protect Jewish people?” article on their refrigerators.

    Lapid is Lapid, though: He faithfully reflects the Israeli average – the brainwashed mood of the majority, the people who shoot and cry, who love themselves to death and pity themselves ad nauseam, who self-victimize and accuse others, innocent of all guilt and certain of their absolute rightness.

    This article is for those who do not understand why Lapid will once again attract voters, and for those who do not understand why there is no chance for real change in Israeli society.

    It is an updated version of the Israeli Declaration of Independence, reality as center-left Israelis like to picture it for themselves: duplicitous, disconnected, repressed and in denial.

    … Few Israelis will disagree with the article; few in the world will take it seriously.

    Lapid’s Israel is the height of temerity – the occupier that not only presents itself as a victim, but as the only victim. It is hard to believe, but that’s the truth.

    Lapid published his article as a fitting Zionist response to the letter by 700 British artists, published in The Guardian on February 13, who called for a cultural boycott of Israel.

    Lapid mocks them and their ignorance, what they know and what they understand, and also preaches to them.

    Former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters is a “useful idiot,” as are filmmaker Ken Loach and musician Richard Ashcroft.

    The opportunist Lapid preaches to Waters, a man of conscience and morality – do you get that?

    Lapid is in favor of a Palestinian state, of course he is – it’s the Palestinians who don’t want it. Hamas hangs homosexuals. In Israel, a woman is president of the Supreme Court; there are Muslims and Christians in the army and the Knesset – what a wonderful country!

    As a former finance minister, he preaches about Gaza: Why don’t they build hospitals and schools there, but only arm themselves?

    In Israel, as we know, most of the budget goes on health and education. Only the leftovers are spent on security.

    But the apex of the article is its playing the victim. After all, what do Lapid and all Israelis want? What do they ask for, these peace seekers? A little quiet, a little security.

    But the bad Arabs don’t want it.

    What Lapid wants is “for people not to try to kill me just because I’m a Jew. For Jews in Europe to be able to stand safely outside synagogues and do their shopping in a kosher supermarket and for Jews in Israel to be safe from the threat of rockets and mortars.” And the tears fall one after the other. For the Jews.

    And what about a little quiet for Palestinians?

    What about a little security for the residents of Gaza, who are killed in the thousands? And dignity? Freedom?

    Isn’t there enough kitsch, lies and death? No, there’s more. Lapid cites 4-year-old Daniel Tregerman, who was killed by a mortar fired from Gaza last August during the war: “A little young to be a colonial occupier,” Lapid wrote, in his usual ingratiating way.

    Lapid has not heard about the blockade and the desperation, the war crimes and the occupation. What does he know about life in the West Bank and death in Gaza? It’s enough for him that the Palestinians were born to kill, and the Jews are their pure and innocent victims.

    That’s what most Israelis think. That’s what the “center-left” thinks.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.643517

  9. Theo
    February 22, 2015, 1:48 pm

    We need more jewish journalists like Gideon Levy!!

    • crone
      February 22, 2015, 6:06 pm

      Theo, don’t you mean we need more journalists like Gideon Levy? Jews don’t have a corner on the market of bad journalists… frankly one wonders if the profession hasn’t so prostituted itself that it no longer exists.

      • Theo
        February 23, 2015, 8:50 am

        crone

        No, I ment exactly what I wrote! Non jewish journalists, if they dare to criticise Israel or zionism in general, are usually shot down with charges of anti-semitism. If more jews would pen anti-zionist articles, then the zionists must invent another way to shoot them down, as it is not easy to match or even surpass the power of the word “anti-semite”!!
        By the way, a few years ago I listened to an exchange of words between Gideon Levy and our own Dersh. Later I wrote an e-mail to Dersh, voicing my agreement of what Levy had said. Good old Dersh called me a wurm, an anti-semite, and I should crawl back under the stone where I came from. Just to illustrate my point above.

        On the other hand I agree with your assesment of our jounalists, since large corporations control the MSM they become simple mouthpieces and write and say what they are told to do!

  10. seafoid
    February 23, 2015, 7:30 am

    Netanyahu also incited last summer, which resulted in the Abu Khdeir murder

    That noose in the picture above is for Israel, courtesy of YESHA.

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