There is no way to beautify, to excuse, to wash in vague descriptions of what happened yesterday at Kaplan Hospital. What happened there in simple words is the use of violence by one MK against another MK. The Knesset member who attacked was the chairman of the joint list, Ayman Odeh, and the Knesset member who was attacked is Itamar Ben Gvir from a powerful Jewish faction. All the explanations Odeh gave yesterday were ridiculous and unconvincing. Yeast Hand is the removed player.
Many of the readers, and I saw this yesterday in the responses to my tweets on the matter, will immediately say that I am exaggerating, since it is all about pushing. Well, I’m pretty sure that even in the parliaments of Ukraine, Turkey, Tunisia and some East Asian countries, it started with urgency and ended in glorious fights inside the plenary halls. The verbal violence in our parliament has been escalating for years, yesterday it has already become physical.
Some of you will argue that Odeh is actually a relatively balanced parliamentarian, usually with a comfortable temperament, and Ben Gvir is a professional provocateur, who deliberately teased Odeh and tried to trip him up. Well, it is clear that Ben Gvir came to the hospital, where the administrative detainee, Makdad Qawasmeh from Hebron, was hospitalized, to produce a provocation, so what, what does this excuse explain? If Odeh reacted violently to the provocation, it means: a. That the provocation was successful; B. That he, Odeh, crossed an unforgivable boundary, and went from a verbal quarrel, rude and blatant as it may be, to a show of hands. If a parliamentarian does not know how to control the movements of his hands, and does not know how to respond with the only ammunition he is allowed to use – the words – he does not deserve to represent the public. He failed.
Ayman Odeh speaks in plenary (Photo: Knesset Spokeswoman, Danny Shem Tov)
Yesterday’s event in Kaplan was probably meant to remind us the day after Yitzhak Rabin’s memorial ceremonies where we live. As a Jew, I am ashamed that Itamar Ben Gvir is a member of the Knesset of Israel. This is a sign of disgrace to Israeli society in general and to religious society in particular; It is a sign of disgrace to the chairman of religious Zionism, Bezalel Smutrich, who joined him in the election, and especially a sign of disgrace to former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who pushed this union between Smutrich and Ben Gvir with all his might just to survive in power. Of all the media and journalists who encouraged this union between a right-wing party (even if extremist is legitimate), and a right-wing man who sees himself as following in the footsteps of a rabbi who held racial doctrines, a rabbi who wanted to separate Arabs and Jews from bathing beaches and deprive them of basic civil rights.
It is also clear to me that, similar to what Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said in his speech, there is an ideological identity between Ben Gvir and Yigal Amir. Ben Gvir was one of the extremists among the protesters before Rabin’s assassination, bragging that Rabin’s car emblem was in his hand, saying that he and his friends could reach Rabin as they came to the emblem. He celebrated Rabin’s assassination in November 1995. This is despite the fact that this week he expressed remorse for it on the broadcast. I was glad to hear, but remorse, at least in my eyes, does not qualify his tenure in the Knesset. And yet, no matter how provocative his views may be, deal with them in words, not hands.
When Rabin said in his last speech, “Violence is the erosion of democracy,” he referred, among other things, to Ben Gvir and his ilk, who in those days led an abominable and inciting campaign for violence, a campaign that culminated that evening. 26 years later we still live in a very violent country. The incitement that accompanied Netanyahu’s last term was dangerous, frightening. I experienced this on my own in some demonstrations I covered. No prosecutor, politician or journalist was murdered during this period.
Israel cannot afford MKs who go beating
Just yesterday, two Betar Jerusalem fans were severely beaten by La Familia fans, who also starred in right-wing demonstrations over the past year, as they applauded the group’s new Muslim alien. Another expression of the stinking abyss Israel Elia, was heard yesterday at the incitement and fabrication station “Gali Israel.” You can hear your crunchy voice, it’s good that you do not know how to speak. “Gali Israel station, where broadcasters of fiction, such as Avi Ratzon and Kinneret Berashi, broadcast and broadcast, is the fruit of the despair of a populist trend led by Netanyahu during his tenure.
But in the transition from a violent atmosphere to physical violence, it does not really matter if your narrative is that you are a “victim of provocation,” or if you are “the creator of the provocation.” If you raise a hand, you are guilty, and please free us from your presence and give way to another person who holds your ideology, but one who also knows how to control himself. Anyone who wants our democracy to continue to exist should condemn anyone who contributes to this violence, and certainly anyone who crosses another red line, whether from the right or the left, whether from Jews or Arabs.
Violent Israel cannot afford MKs who are being beaten now. Odeh’s right not to follow the conciliatory line of Mansour Abbas; His right to prioritize the Palestinian issue over the issue of the situation of Israeli Arabs, he has no right to raise a hand against a Knesset member, even if that Knesset member is a racist. If there had been a relevant imaginary tribunal, he would have had to oust Odeh for Ben Gvir’s push, but even in our Knesset there is no ethics committee. Even she is disabled.