Netanyahu tells voters: If you don’t vote Likud, Arabs will ‘annihilate us all’

Benjamin Netanyahu

Yumna Patel reports in Mondoweiss:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is coming under fire again for anti-Arab comments made by his campaign, this time for a message on his official Facebook page telling voters “Arabs want to annihilate us all – women, children and men.”

Israeli media reported that upon accessing Netanyahu’s official page, viewers are greeted with an automated popup message in Hebrew with a message to voters, imploring them to “make sure” their friends and family vote Likud.

The pre-set message is written from the perspective of a volunteer with Netanyahu’s campaign, who tells voters “I am donating my time because we cannot have a dangerous left-wing government… in a week’s time,” according to Haaretz’s translation of the message.

“A secular left-wing weak government that relies on Arabs who want to destroy us all – women, children and men, and will enable a nuclear Iran that will eliminate us,” the message continues, saying “we cannot allow this to happen!”  The message also boasts that Netanyahu “brings a right-wing policy of a Jewish state, security, and a strong Israel.”

According to Haaretz, following their report on the message, Likud claimed that the message “originated in a staffer’s mistake” and that Netanyahu had not seen it prior to publication.

Despite claims that the message was not approved by Netanyahu, anti-Palestinian sentiment has been a feature of his current and past campaigns for reelection in an effort to rile up support amongst his rightwing base.

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