Israel prime minister Netanyahu’s son under fire for anti-Semitic post

known anti-Semitic themes used to describe Soros and enemies of Yair Netanyahu's father
The following article by Josie Ensor, Middle East Correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, published on 1o September 2017, deals with the latest scandal to hit the family of Israel’s prime minister Netanyahu. A scandal that come in the shape of a social media post against his father’s critics, taking on an anti-Semitic colour.

Yair Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister’s son, is under fire for posting an anti-Semitic caricature aimed at his father’s critics on social media.

Mr Netanyahu, 26, shared a meme on Facebook captioned “the food chain,” which featured a photo of Jewish billionaire George Soros dangling the world in front of a reptilian creature, who in turn dangles an alchemy symbol in front of the pejorative “happy merchant” image.

The other figures in the chain are former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, who has led weekly protests calling on Benjamin Netanyahu to step down over growing corruption allegations.

Mr Soros, a Hungarian-born Jewish American businessman, has spent part of his fortune funding left-wing groups and Human Rights Watch, a frequent critic of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and its policies toward the Palestinians.

The images of Mr Soros and the reptile evoke anti-Semitic conspiracy theories claiming that Jews control the world.

The post was shared by David Duke, former Ku Klux Klan leader, and other anti-Semites.

Avi Gabbay, Israel’s Labor Party chairman, said on Sunday the post “crossed every line imaginable” and was a “very sad” day for Israel.

The Israel office of the Anti-Defamation League denounced the cartoon on Twitter, writing: “The caricature posted by Yair Netanyahu includes explicit anti-Semitic elements. One cannot belittle the danger inherent in an anti-Semitic discourse.”

In further Facebook posts following criticism for posting the cartoon, Yair Netanyahu, who is a university student, condemned the Israeli left for being two-faced in trying to silence him.

A family spokesman said the younger Netanyahu would not be making any other comment.

The prime minister refused to ask questions from reporters about the post on Sunday morning at the start of his weekly cabinet meeting.

Last month, the son made another headline-grabbing post after a protester was killed during a white nationalist rally in the US state of Virginia.

It appeared to suggest that hard-left organisations now pose more of a danger than neo-Nazi groups, which he wrote are a dying breed.

Some critics in Israel suggested Netanyahu junior’s online activities were meant to deflect attention from his parent’s legal troubles.

The Netanyahu family is facing a slew of corruption allegations. The prime minister has been questioned about his ties to executives in media, international business and Hollywood.

His associates have been engulfed in a probe relating to a possible conflict of interest involving a $2 billion purchase of German submarines.

Israel’s attorney general has said he intends to indict the prime minister’s wife, Sara, for fraud over her bloated household expenses.

 

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