Skip to main content

Holocaust comments gaffe won't harm Bibi

Even if Israeli media treated with satire, rather than drama, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's comment on the Holocaust and Palestinian leader Haj Amin al-Husseini, he scored some points again with his electorate.
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is pictured during a meeting with United States Secretary of State John Kerry in Berlin, October 22, 2015. Kerry hopes to persuade Netanyahu to tone down his rhetoric, days after the Israeli leader linked a Muslim leader to the Holocaust. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri? - RTS5L3C
Read in 

European media have latched on and won’t let go — headlines and analyses everywhere. It’s completely wild. Bibi [Netanyahu] has caused us grave damage,” a former Israeli ambassador to a major European capital said in despair, speaking on condition of anonymity on Oct. 22.

The former envoy, who monitors European media on a daily basis, sounded horrified. He described at length the pointed discussions being conducted abroad since Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed that the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al-Husseini, was the one who planted the seed for Hitler’s Final Solution idea. This claim, which has been discredited by many historians, set off a huge storm, as expected. In Europe, and especially in Germany where Netanyahu landed Wednesday, Oct. 21, for an official visit, the discussions dealt with the essence of his comment and its significance. On the other hand, Israeli media, and especially the social networks, reported what he said and then immediately went on to the wholesale production of jokes at the prime minister’s expense.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.