Middle East

After US Capitol storming, Israel fears same scenario – Middle East Monitor

On 6 January, the US Congress building was stormed by supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump, after the latter called on his supporters to rally to defend the Republicans.

Israeli officials and political parties have criticised Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for not commenting on the events of the US Congress, voicing fears of similar reactions in Israel.

Knesset member Orna Barbivai stated in statements translated by Shehab News Agency: “Netanyahu should contact his friend Donald Trump to tell him that this scene will not be reproduced in Israel.”

Knesset member Eli Avidar predicted: “What happened in Washington could happen in Israel the day after the elections, as Netanyahu continues his incitement against the judiciary.”

Knesset member Ofer Shelah expressed: “What happened in the US, despite being the strongest and most prominent democratic state, indicates that one person can undermine the foundations of a state. Therefore, we must protect the democratic system in Israel before it is too late.”

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Leader of the New Hope party Gideon Sa’ar also noted: “What happened in the United States reminds us of what could also happen in Israel due to the state of polarisation and extremism.”

Knesset member Ron Huldai conveyed: “Netanyahu’s refusal to comment on the disgusting disturbances in Washington did not come by chance, as he thinks he is more important than the state.”

According to Knesset member Tamar Zandberg: “The attempted coup in the United States is the result of Trump’s attempts to convince his supporters that his victory is a divine decision and that no Democrat can change that fact. Unfortunately, many right-wing parties believe that democracy works only one way. Therefore, I hope this will not happen in Israel, but I cannot promise that.”

MK Karin Elharar stressed: “The events seen in Washington should scare all Israelis, yet, incitement turns into violence at the end.”

A protester screams “Freedom” inside the Senate chamber after the U.S. Capitol was breached by a mob during a joint session of Congress on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC [Win McNamee/Getty Images]

She added: “What happened tonight in Washington is an attempted coup that could soon be reduplicated in Israel. Netanyahu was doing the same thing during the last four years and since the beginning of the investigations. We must therefore alert and warn all the Democrats in Israel to avoid the chaos wave led by Netanyahu.”

Israeli politician Eldad Yaniv remarked: “After four years of insulting the institutions of democracy and its principles, the election day marked the climax of this path. Trump’s allegations that the elections are flawed have prompted his supporters to use weapons and storm the Congress.”

He added: “What Netanyahu has done over the last four years is similar to what Trump has done, so I am afraid that the same scenario will be happening again. Netanyahu keeps spreading lies and claims that a conspiracy has been set up against him to bring him down using flimsy arguments and fallacies. He dragged Israel to the elections four times, and he will not hesitate to drag the country to the fifth election.”

Foreign Minister of the Israeli occupation government Gabi Ashkenazi expressed his dismay over the attack on the US Congress last night and communicated strong condemnation of the incident.

Ashkenazi added: “Since its independence, the US, our great and sincere friend, has been a beacon of democracy and stood up defending the values of freedom, justice and independence.”

He continued: “I am sure that the American people and their elected representatives will know how to block this attack and continue to defend the values on which the United States was founded.”

Previously, a number of European officials proclaimed their shock upon hearing the news from Washington, stressing the need for restraint and respect for the rule of law in the country.

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