Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by the Forward

Bibi Accuses Press Of Ignoring ‘Under A Rock’ Condemnation Of Neo-Nazis — Which He Never Made

Image by getty images

Taking a page from President Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the media for not reporting on his condemnation of racist events in Charlottesville, Virginia.

And taking another page from Trump, Netanyahu misrepresented the media’s response.

Netanyahu came under fire for his belated response to the events, which were laced with anti-Semitic themes, and for not reacting to Trump’s comments in which he equated neo-Nazis to those protesting against them.

In a Thursday interview with Israel’s right-wing leaning Channel 20 TV, Netanyahu responded, to the claim: “I said, and of course our media did not exactly cover it, that these people should crawl back under the rock they came from. I usually choose my words carefully, but that was a very harsh statement. This, of course, was not covered and led to all sorts of irrelevant interpretations.”

The reason Netanyahu’s comments weren’t covered by the media? Because he never said them publicly.

Netanyahu was apparently referring to a Facebook post of the Israeli embassy in Washington about an address Ambassador Ron Dermer gave in Arkansas on August 14. In his speech, Dermer said he had spoken earlier to the prime minister and that Netanyahu asked him to convey the message that “these people should crawl back under the rock they came from.”

Contact Nathan Guttman at guttman@forward.com or on Twitter @nathanguttman

Author

Nathan Guttman

Nathan Guttman

Nathan Guttman, staff writer, was the Forward’s Washington bureau chief. He joined the staff in 2006 after serving for five years as Washington correspondent for the Israeli dailies Haaretz and The Jerusalem Post. In Israel, he was the features editor for Ha’aretz and chief editor of Channel 1 TV evening news. He was born in Canada and grew up in Israel. He is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Bibi Accuses Press Of Ignoring His Rebuke To Racists

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Bibi Accuses Press Of Ignoring ‘Under A Rock’ Condemnation Of Neo-Nazis — Which He Never Made

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close