In a searing monologue on Israel’s Channel 10, comedian Assaf Harel ended his “Good Night” show with a call to arms against his country’s occupation of the West Bank, which he framed as a dangerous human rights violation.
“We’re doing great and there are a couple million people we’re responsible for and they’re in an horrible state, infrastructure, food, healthcare, education,” he said, in the closing minutes of the last installment of his program. Almost 86,000 people have viewed the clip on YouTube.
“Ever since the right-wing took power, more and more voices are warning of apartheid. Are you kidding? Apartheid has been here for ages. It’s just that we’re on it’s good side, so it doesn’t really bother us,” he continued.
He went on to praise Israel’s human rights organizations, including B’Tselem, Breaking the Silence and Yesh Din, as “the most legitimate and healthy thing in Israeli society today.”
He also alleged that right-wing forces in the country based their political strategy on deflecting attention away from the occupation and settlement of the West Bank, which he said would be an unpopular endeavor if people realized its moral and financial costs.
Harel’s show was canceled after this season due to its low ratings, and the comedian had garnered a controversial reputation for his fiery criticism of the government and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
‘Wake Up And Smell The Apartheid’
Daniel J. Solomon is the former Assistant to the Editor/News Writer at the Forward. Originally from Queens, he attended Harvard as an undergraduate, where he wrote his senior thesis on French-Jewish intellectual history. He is excited to have returned to New York after his time in Massachusetts. Daniel’s passions include folk music, cycling, and pointed argument.