The Jerusalem Post
Netanyahu says Lapid ‘minimizing’ anti-Jewish hate
Opposition leader MK Benjamin Netanyahu has accused Foreign Minister Yair Lapid of “minimizing” the concept of antisemitism and diminishing its uniqueness in comments Lapid made this past week at an international conference on antisemitism at the Foreign Ministry.
In his speech, Lapid said that “The antisemites weren’t only in the Budapest Ghetto” but that “antisemites were also slave traders who threw people bound together with chains into the sea. Antisemites were the extremist Hutu in Rwanda who massacred Tutsis,” and continued on to say “Muslim fanatics” ISIS, Boko Haram and those who kill gay people, were also antisemites.
“Antisemitism isn’t the first name of hate, it’s the family name, it is anyone who hates so much that they want to kill and eliminate and persecute and expel people just because they are different,” added the foreign minister.
In a statement to the press Thursday night, Netanyahu strongly rejected Lapid’s assertion.
“Even though antisemitism, hatred of Jews, is part of the general human phenomenon of hatred of the foreigner, it is different from that in its strength, its durability over thousands of years and its murderous ideology that has been nourished throughout the generations in order to pave the way for the destruction of Jews,” argued Netanyahu. “Lapid’s comments minimize the uniqueness of the hatred of Jews in history, and the size of the tragedy of the Holocaust which destroyed a third of our people.”
Lapid actually said, however, in his speech that “The Holocaust is the extreme manifestation of hate,” and that “There has never been anything like the Holocaust in the history of humanity.”
Netanyahu described Lapid’s speech in general as “outrageous and irresponsible” and said it would make Israel’s demands of other nations to invest in protecting their Jewish communities from antisemitism more difficult.