(February 14, 2019 / Israel Hayom) Knesset member Aida Touma-Sliman (Joint Arab List) has aroused public ire by tweeting that the murder of Ori Ansbacher last Thursday was a gender-based crime, rather than an ethno-religious one.
“The murderer being Palestinians doesn’t make the crime any less horrifying, and it cannot be part of the struggle for [Palestinian] national liberation,” Touma-Sliman tweeted Tuesday.
“This government is committing a crime by using Ori’s murder to continue to taint the Palestinian people’s fight with a crime committed by a single person.”
MK Robert Ilatov of the Yisrael Beytenu Party said in response, “Sadly, Israel, which is dealing with terrorists who are trying to attack it from outside, is also forced to deal with terrorists who are trying to attack it from inside the Knesset. I suggest that MK Touma-Sliman look somewhere else to promote her destructive agendas. The terrorist [who killed Ansbacher] clearly said when questioned that he had left his home carrying a knife so he could attack Jews.”
Meanwhile, Facebook removed a post by Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely on Tuesday.
Writing in response to Ansbacher’s shocking murder and assault, Hotovely said she was “horrified at the brutal act of terrorism against an innocent young girl. The Palestinians prove once again that they have no humanity. Ori’s killer should face death, and he and his family should pay the price.”
Hotovely published the post on Saturday night. On Tuesday, Facebook’s Israeli offices deleted it. Hotovely’s office contacted Facebook about the message being removed, and her staff were told that users had complained about the content of the post. Facebook Israel said that after reviewing the post, the company had decided it comprised a violation of its policies against hate speech since it contained “statements about inferiority that hint at physical, mental or moral flaws of a person or group of people.”
Hotovely’s office protested the decision by Facebook.
“Rejecting a post that condemns a despicable act of terrorism is unparalleled hypocrisy and an attack on freedom of expression. Facebook is demonstrating a lack of sensitivity to the horrifying murder of a young girl. The Palestinians incite constantly, and a platform like Facebook should be bolstering those who defend values, unlike those who sanctify a culture of death,” the deputy foreign minister’s bureau said.
Maayan Sarig, communications manager for Facebook Israel, said in response: “At Facebook, we don’t allow people to personally attack entire populations on the basis of race, nationality, religion, sex or anything else. We have a clear policy and rules, and when we receive a report about content that violates our politics, including hate speech, it is removed.”
Delegation of Israels and Palestinians pays their respects
Meanwhile, an Israeli-Palestinian delegation arrived at the Ansbacher home in the settlement of Tekoa to pay a condolence visit.
The delegation included activists from the Tag Meir group, which combats hate crimes by both Palestinians and Israelis; MK Mossi Raz (Meretz); New Israel Fund director Mickey Gitzin; and about 10 Palestinians who live in villages near Tekoa who were friendly with peacemaker and negotiator Rabbi Menachem Froman, and who maintain ties with his widow, Hadassah Froman.
Tag Meir said Tuesday that other than the Palestinians who were part of the delegation, the organization had received many letters of support from other Palestinians that it passed on to the Ansbacher family during the visit.
Gadi Gvaryahu, head of Tag Meir, said “the delegation included local Palestinians who wanted to condole the family and condemn the horrible murder. The visitors were received gracefully and with warmth. May Ori’s memory be a blessing.”
Upon leaving the family’s home after the visit, Raz said, “Personally, I will do everything so Ori will be the last. The Palestinians have been waiting for this visit, and it needs to herald what will come—that we need to join them and they need to join us. We’re all people. Murder is murder, and it must be condemned.”