MKs Respond to Tel Aviv Terror Attack
The shooting occurred on Friday afternoon, leaving insufficient time for Members of Knesset (MKs) to respond before Shabbat. That gave them plenty of time to carefully consider what to write on the face they put before the public. Here is a selection of screenshots from Facebook accounts of a number of MKs, arranged from right of the political spectrum to left. I leave it to you to draw your own conclusions regarding the statesmenship or lack of statemenship of our various elected leaders.
Translation: I said this evening, in an interview on Channel 2, that the terror attack in Tel Aviv was a result of incitement on the part of the United Arab List and government weakness. Patsies and wimps do not survive in the Middle East, we need to get back our security!
Aryeh Deri, leader of Shas has not updated his page since 24 December. Shuli Mualem-Rafaeli has not updated her page since just before the time of the terror attack on 1 January.
He posted the exact same item on his Hebrew FB page. This appeal was put out to all, regardless of political affiliation, to show that terror will not scare people off the streets of Israel’s cities.
Translation: Today I presented the government with the candidacy of Reserves General, Dr Avichai Mandelblit for Attorney General for its approval. After an intensive discussion of his suitability for the job, with the recommendation of the Vetting Committee and after hearing arguments opposing it, the cabinet voted unanimously in favour of his appointment.
Dr. Anat Berko:
Translation: It’s very easy and comfortable for MK Ahmad Tibi to argue that the murder on Dizengoff was a specific incident, isolated and with no wider connection. It is much more difficult to cope with the fact that he and other Arab MKs oppose Israeli symbols, refuse to renounce terror and simply incite against us from the Knesset podium. And if that’s not enough, he dares to speak about police shooting of Arab civilians – supposedly “innocents” – as if we are not talking about people who came to hurt and to kill, and as if our police have nothing to do but shoot at innocent Arabs. He wanted a civilized discussion – he got a civilized discussion where everything is on the table. Please share and spread this: The time has come to remove from this man the cloak of collegiality he so enjoys donning for years for the Israeli Jewish public, instead putting a mirror showing his real face before him.
My condolences to the families of Alon Bakal and Shimon Ruimi and a quick recovery for the injured.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu:
Translation (somewhat shortened): I arrived at the site of the murder on Dizengoff. It was here that two young men, the age of my children, were killed in cold blood while celebrating a birthday. I send my condolences to their families and wishes for a speedy recovery to the injured.
The Israel security forces are working to apprehend the murderer. We have increased the forces working in all relevant areas and ask the public to maintain vigilance.
I expect all Arab MKs, without exception, to renounce the murder. There is Islamist extremist incitement in the mosques, the education system and social networks. We are working against this incitement and have made it illegal. I am not prepared for there to be 2 states within Israel, a law-abiding state for most of her citizens and a mini-state within where there is no law and order with Islamist incitement and illegal weapons used at weddings and other events and for crime. That era is over. The government has prepared a new programme for bringing law and order to the Arab sector.
One cannot say “I am Israeli regarding my rights and Palestinian regarding my obligations”. Whoever wants to live in Israel will be Israeli through and through. I am pleased by the increasing participation in civil services by Christians, Druze, Bedouin in the north, and Muslims. I call on all Israelis to walk together, in co-existence and peace without incitement, hate and extremism. We are all citizens; we are all obligated to preserve her and keep the laws.
Translation: Such a bad start to the Gregorian New Year. Sad Shabbat Eve. I send my condolences to the families of those who were killed and my wishes for a speedy recovery to the injured. Our responses have to be careful, powerful, and calm. Simple directions: Do not hinder the police and security forces. Whoever has a legal weapon, do not leave the house without it. We will not let terrorists run our lives.
And the next day:
Translation: Within the pain and horror of yesterday, the fact that yesterday there was another firing of missiles from Gaza upon the southern communities almost went unnoticed. We cannot become numb in face of this aggression. Hamas is testing us, and the IDF responded well. Immediately. The response has to be powerful and not proportional, and to make it clear that we will not abandon the security of residents in the south.
Translation: The last attack raises unresolved problems. The multitude of weapons in the Arab sector is not a new topic. In a meeting I initiated as Minister of Justice over a year ago with Arab municipality leaders following the wave of violence at that time, they themselves raised the issue and asked for the police to enter everywhere and collect weapons and maintain law and order. I raised their request in the Cabinet meeting attended also by the Minister of Internal Security and the Police Commissioner.
Illegal weapons that are easily obtained are dangerous at times of unrest. The government has to put together a clear policy on this topic and to begin an operation of identification and collection of weapons, especially as community leaders point to the danger and request action. This is not only an opportunity, but a duty to do this now alongside other necessary actions – national and security related.
I send my wishes for a speedy recovery of the injured and condolences to the families of Alon Bakal and Shimon Ruimi, of blessed memory.
Translation: Alon Bakal and Shimon Ruimi were murdered Friday afternoon as they were out enjoying themselves and feeling secure with their friends in a new pub that Alon managed. Michal and I arrived that evening to the site to show our condolences to the families and light candles in their memory and to wish speedy recoveries to the injured.
We are in the midst of a murderous wave of terror that has taken the lives of dozens of Israelis. We must powerfully strike those who choose the way of terror, to demonstrate zero tolerance and immediately invest all our resources and power to study the connection between the terrorist and Daish.
I want to strengthen the hand of the security forces, the police and Shabak who under difficult weather conditions are working extremely hard to catch the contemptible terrorist.
The citizens of Israel are heroes and will prove to all who try to hurt us in Tel Aviv, Raanana, Kiryat Gat, Beersheva, Gush Etzion and Jerusalem – that we will continue to live, to laugh and to go out on the town.
Translation: I send my condolences to the families of Shimon Ruimi and Alon Bakal who were murdered yesterday in a despicable terror attack in Tel Aviv, and I wish for speedy recoveries for the injured. It is horrible to think about the struggles ahead of them, and important to remember that anxiety and loss of a sense of security that many experienced yesterday are shared by hundreds of thousands of residents of Jerusalem and the settlements who are coping with a long wave of terror.
I call on the government to do all it can to bring calm, and not to let this abominable attack be the grounds for incitement and further division of our society. In such sensitive and dangerous days, responsible leadership must fight extremism that exists in both the Arab and Jewish sectors and not turn us all into enemies. Exactly as those who burned the family in Duma act with the encouragement of a known infrastructure that provides support and incitement. This is exactly how fundamentalist groups act among Arab Israelis. In both cases the vast majority of the population opposes choosing this kind of act and supports strict steps to take care of the inciters, and that is exactly what the government must do.
Above all, I hope and believe that the terrorist will be apprehended quickly, and wish us all that the new year will continue in a better fashion than it began.
Interesting that on a TV programme on Channel 2, Galon argued that Bibi suggests solutions that do not promise hope or change for Arab Israelis while he talks only of Arab incitement to violence. We need to talk about 50 years of our oppression over another people.
Translation: Netanyahu is the same Netanyahu and the sea is the same sea, since the days the buses of Arabs were surging to the ballot boxes. And also before that. (From my interview on the morning programme on Reshet Bet.)
In the interview programme on Channel 2 he claimed that if you argue that everything that is happening is because of incitement than you are giving a very bad diagnosis. Palestinians, he said, don’t need incitement to spur them to violence – they are living under occupation, humiliation, oppression. These are the best incitements. If things continue as they are now, we will continue to fall to the depths. Tibi says that the violence gives the terrorist hope – he knows he won’t free Palestine, but he will, at the price of his own death, demonstrate his despair by attacking the Israeli.
Ayman Odeh posted nothing on his Facebook page about the attack. Perhaps he was too busy enjoying his birthday festivities as birthday greetings dominated the weekend’s postings. He came back to his page yesterday to post about domestic violence in the Arab sector, a very important topic, but still nothing about the terror attack that shook up the nation. He was interviewed on Channel 2 and I give a summary of what he said. The interview can be heard in Hebrew by clicking on the image below.
He claimed that Netanyahu is a man who incites. Odeh claims that he renounced the attack before knowing anything about it, saying that nothing can excuse such an act, whether the motivation is nationalistic or otherwise. The interviewer asked: if it was nationalistic, would you agree it was a terror attack? AO: I want to start by saying that I am against, clearly against, such acts. Nobody knows what the motivation was and so I will not say anything about that. Bibi talks about law and order? For a decade we have been requesting the collection of illegal weapons from Arab towns. There is also racism – when an Arab murders an Arab nobody cares. But when an Arab kills a Jew all the police come out and the Prime Minister comes out. That is a form of structural racism. The interviewer asks about incitement in the Arab sector. AO: The proof lies in the hands of the stronger side. I have heard Bibi talk against Muslims for being Muslims. Interviewer asks about the fact that this is the third Israeli Arab who chose to kill Jews because they are Jews. AO: What is the motivation of 1.5 million Arabs in Israel who are fighting without being violent? Interviewer asks: Are you not worried that you may be missing something, as a leader in the Arab sector, that perhaps there are some who are copying the ways of Daish? AO: I don’t see that because that is not the situation. You can find one here and one there. Do you know how many Arabs have been beaten by Jews recently? Do you know how many Arabs are afraid to come to Jewish towns? Let’s go to the roots of the problem – do you kill the mosquitoes or dry the swamp? The ongoing occupation, the ongoing incitement, we need to get to the root of the problem.
Interestingly, someone put up the following screenshot on his FB timeline:
Translation: But I of course support the just fight of the Palestinian people.
Now, you might want to compare these FB posts to those that went up just after the current wave of terror began. I collected a few of them and published it on 4 October 2015. You can read it here: MKs React to to Terror Attacks . . . Or Do They?