Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has been weighing whether or not to fire Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely for her comments made on channel I24 News that many U.S. Jews, primarily the Reform and Conservative, don’t understand the complexities of living in Israel and therefore don’t understand Israel.
Hotovely claimed that since most of the Jews in the U.S. don’t have children who served in either the Israeli or U.S. military, and have not lived under the constant threat of rocket fire, they don’t understand the complexities of the region.
Her comment angered many U.S. Jews and created a large backlash in public forums and social media. Channel 2 News discovered that Netanyahu was looking into ways to legally fire her from her current position due to the comments. As the Prime Minister is also the acting Foreign Minsiter, he officially oversees her office and she works directly under him in her capacity as Deputy Foreign Minister.
While a letter of termination has not officially been sent, the investigation of how to do so, plus the deliberate leaking of that search is meant to send a strong message to Hotovely from the Prime Minister to cease and desist upsetting U.S. Jewry. Netanyahu used a similar tactic in threating the then-Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon, after Danon criticized his actions during Operation Protective Edge.
Already on Thursday morning, the Prime Minister was denouncing Hotovely’s comments. “The Jews of the Diaspora are dear to us and they are an integral part of our nation. there is no place for a tongue lashing like the one we saw last night, and her words do not reflect the position of the State of Israel,” Netanyahu said in a public statement.
Hotovely also attacked U.S. Jewry by claiming that they were politicizing the Kotel in an effort to gain recognition for themselves.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)