PM Netanyahu Gathers Israeli Arab Community Leader to Apologize

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2Realizing his comments on Election Day warning voters of the large Arab turnout at the polls, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday, 3 Nissan, hosted Arab leaders from around the country to apologize in person. Mr. Netanyahu explained that he was sorry for his words that he now realizes were hurtful to members of the Arab community.

“I know that my comments last week offended some Israeli citizens and offended members of the Israeli-Arab community. This was never my intent. I apologize for this.

“My actions as Prime Minister, including the significant investment made within our minority communities, proves the exact opposite. At the same time, no foreign entity should be interfering with Israel’s democratic process.

“I view myself as the Prime Minister of each and every citizen of Israel, without any prejudice based on religion, ethnicity or gender. I view every citizen as my partner in building a more secure, more prosperous State of Israel and a nation that benefits the needs and interests of all our citizenry”, he told those present.

While his remarks were received warmly by those present, the head of the Arab bloc in Knesset told Israel news that he and his colleagues do not accept the apology, adding the prime minister plans discriminatory policies harmful to Israeli Arabs in this incoming administration so they prefer to judge him by his actions and not his words.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem / Photo: PM’s Spokesman’s Office)




12 COMMENTS

  1. Har Nof, Itamar, Mercaz HaRav, daily rock throwing, firebombing a little 11 year old girl, countless support for terrorism, on-and-on the list goes – Apologize?

  2. As far as I have understood the ent only Druze Israelis meet with Netanyahu. NO muslim/arab israeli was there! And Netanyahu didn´t regret his words only that people were offended by them.

  3. UTJ , Shas and and all who are traditional,should have a core commonality of Family values that c/should provide a basis to be mutually built upon !

    While this will seem to some as naive, but they are most probably unaware that in the past the Arab leadership have stated that of all the reasons for their opposition to the state of Israel, the most serious one is the degenerate morality that the state continues to flaunt and foist on their whole region.

    They ought to welcome the large arab contingent and use the new Term as an crucial opportunity to somewhat finally bury the hatchet !

  4. The Obama administration is pushing him to apologize. Bibi is right, there should not be a Palestinian State.

    There never was a “Palestine”.
    Obama is scared Bibi has now stepped up into becoming a strong leader then him and just woke up that he lacks leadership skills!

    Hate to you break it you Barack HUSSEIN Obama, but when you turn your back on G-d, G-d will turn his back on you.

    Don’t mess with the G-d of the Jewish people!

  5. VosIzDos: That’s because he was responding to Obama’s phony outrage. What he said was factual, that the Arabs were voting in higher numbers, to mobilize his base to go vote. Every politician everywhere does the same thing.

    What about your outrage that Obama paid NGO to get the Arab vote out and drive them to the polls? Is that ok with you, interfering in another democracy’s election and using taxpayer dollars to do it?

  6. #7 VosIzDos
    Go tell them, that they and you are both ignorant and wrong

    In the public sphere ,Words and what they create, count more than actions

    (e.g. Dovid Hamelech actions,though arguably worse than some others, was punished less..

  7. Read this [Translated ]article from a Hard Liner in The Makor Rishon newspaper:

    by Moshe Feiglin

    Nov. 5, ’13

    The
    Arab Knesset Members’ horror show during the Interior Committee session on Jewish rights to pray on the Temple Mount is business as usual. The general public may see these MKs as uncultured and unmannered hooligans. There are actually a few Arab MKs who fit that description, but since I have been in the Knesset I have learned that most of them are cultured people. Some of them are even friendly and well-mannered. But when the cameras turn on – particularly the Arab media cameras – they all try to outdo the obnoxiousness of Ahmad Tibi. They shout, curse and make a ruckus – a real jungle.

    Why do they act this way? Why do the Arab MKs go wild when they think their constituents can see them? Is this a testimony to the low level of their voter-base or to something deeper? In private conversation with me quite a few Arab citizens have admitted their discomfort with this behavior. The intelligent Arab public understands very well that Ahmad Tibi does not bring them great honor. Tibi is a hooligan, riddled with inferiority complexes, but he is not stupid. Why does he act this way?

    The answer is that it is Israeli society that has created the Arab MKs uncivilized behavior.

    The State of Israel attempted to build a new Israeli identity, detached from its previous identities. We wanted to be a nation like all other nations. To accomplish that, we invented Israeli-ness: Not as another tier on the shoulders of Judaism, but as a new identity. If only Jews could be Israeli, the reasoning goes, then we have not yet built a new identity – all we have managed to do is exchange our Jewish identity for a new, political garb. If we really want a completely new Israeli identity that is independent of Judaism, then we need the Arabs. They are the largest non-Jewish ethnic minority that we have in Israel. If they cannot be Israelis, then our attempt to build a new Israeli identity will have failed. To put it succinctly, the Israeli needs the Arab to help him forget that he is a Jew.

    Now we can better understand the Arab MKs. They represent a large constituency whose national identity has always been and always will be attached to the larger Arab nation. The modern state-nation invention does not interest them. In any case, those nation-states are disintegrating in all 22 puppet states that Western imperialism established in the Middle East following World War I. They are Arabs, and now the Jews come and tell them that they are Israelis. They justifiably reject the attempt to force a new identity up on them with scorn. But they have no choice – they live here. So they live a dichotomy in which their existence contradicts their identity.

    The Arab MKs are in the worst predicament of all. They are not just ordinary citizens who carry their Israeli ID cards so that they can collect social security; they are part of the beating heart of Israeliness. What can be more Israeli than being a Knesset Member? So the Arab MKs have to constantly demonstrate contempt, scorn, rudeness and worse – simply because they must always prove to their constituents that they have not lost their Arab identity.

    And the Israelis?

    They are also captive to the same dichotomy. Just as the Arab MK must always scorn the Israeli just to preserve his Arab identity, so, for precisely the same reason, the Jew must pander to the Arab misconduct in order to maintain his new Israeli identity.

    It is a strange costume ball.The Jews come to the ball with the Israeli mask and force the Arabs to come with a similar Israeli mask. This mask is very uncomfortable for the Arabs and they try to squirm out of it with increasing rudeness. But if they take off their masks, everyone will understand that the only other people left with the masks are Jews – not Israelis – (just) Jews!

    So the Jews are willing to put up with any kind of behavior, as long as the Arabs continue to wear their masks. The Supreme Court will never remove them from the Knesset. Tibi will pour water and turn his back on the speakers, an MK spying for the enemy in real time will be allowed to leave Israel without trial, Zoabi will go for a ride on the Marmara and more.

    “You have to thank me for being willing to be here,” said Hanin Zoabi in the Knesset plenum.. And she’s right..