Meretz to A-G: Probe Likud for incitement in campaign ad featuring ISIS
ISIS fighter on a street in the city of Mosul, June 23, 2104.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Netanyahu's "incitement" could have dangerous consequences, Meretz candidates warn.
Likud incited to violence by releasing a video implying that the Islamic State will reach Jerusalem if the Left is elected, Meretz candidates wrote in a letter to Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein on Sunday.“We already have experience with [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s inciting statements in demonstrations in the 1990s against [former prime minister Yitzhak] Rabin and last summer during Protective Edge when the Left and the Arab public were the target,” Mossi Raz and Gaby Lasky, sixth and seventh on the Meretz list, wrote. The subject of the Meretz candidates’ complaint was a clip Likud released Saturday night showing actors playing Islamic State terrorists driving as Arabic rap music plays in the background. They pull up next to another car and ask the driver how to get to Jerusalem and get the response, “turn left.”As the terrorists drive away, the slogan “Anyone but Bibi” can be seen on their pickup truck’s bumper with the words, “The Left will surrender to terrorism,” and bullet holes appear on the screen. “For his election campaign, Netanyahu is once again using incitement to create fear, intimidate and turn the Left into a target for his poison, even at the price of the possibly dangerous consequences,” the Meretz candidates wrote.The two also complained about a Samaria Citizens’ Council video that shows a left-wing activist accepting money to slander Israel in the international press. At the end of the clip, the activist hangs himself, apparently at the request of his European patrons. Raz and Lasky added that freedom of expression is important to them, but said the videos are dangerous and that they learned from history they could have dangerous and disturbing reverberations.After viewing the Likud clip on Saturday night, former Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) chief Yuval Diskin said Netanyahu has no shame.“‘The Left will bring ISIS into Israel,’ says Netanyahu – the man who released [Hamas founder] Sheikh Ahmed Yassin in 1997 and rebuilt Hamas. The man who released over 1,000 terrorists, some of whom already went back to committing attacks during his term as prime minister,” Diskin wrote on Facebook.Diskin also called Netanyahu “the man who threatened Iran but is unable to defeat a terrorist organization in Gaza.”The Likud responded by calling Diskin a leftist who favors dividing Jerusalem, establishing a Palestinian state on pre-1967 lines and partially allowing Palestinians to have the right of return.According to the Likud, Diskin “will bring a defense disaster” – though he is not currently running for any position.“Netanyahu will continue standing firmly against all the pressures.He will not give in or surrender, and will continue to protect the security of all citizens of Israel,” the party added.Labor MK Miki Rosenthal said the Right moved to open incitement.“They learned nothing from Rabin’s assassination,” he said.“Without shame and without restraint, the Likud put out a film that accuses the Left of promoting terrorism, no less. The chief inciter then, Bibi [Netanyahu], the man who stood on the balcony in Zion Square as people called Rabin a traitor, cannot say he doesn’t know any better.”According to Rosenthal, the video is a turning point that will lead to the nationalist camp losing to the Zionist Union.Meanwhile, Jordanian Palestinian rap group Torabyeh threatened legal action over Likud’s “ruthless infringement of intellectual property rights and distortion of [the group’s] reputation” for using its song “Ghorbah” in the video.“The use of the song in the particular context cannot be considered anything but deliberate propaganda of the Zionist Right for the purpose of electoral propaganda,” the group wrote on its Facebook page. “Furthermore, it implicates the Torabyeh group by containing serious accusations of terrorism and association with ISIS, which is consequently putting the group’s members’ lives at risk.”Torabyeh added that it “reject[s] all forms of cooperation with the Zionist enemy (Right and Left) and the fascist expansionist colonial entity.”“Victory for the Palestinian people and the Arab[s] against colonialism, glory to the martyrs,” the Facebook post concluded.