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How Netanyahu's government is unifying Israeli Arabs

Members of the Joint List feel that coalition head David Bitan's insulting Israeli Arabs is backfiring and instead strengthening and uniting the Israeli Arab sector.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem December 11, 2016. REUTERS/Abir Sultan/Pool - RTX2UHUI
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Knesset member and coalition chairman David Bitan (Likud) kicked off another storm over the weekend when he echoed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s controversial statements during the last Knesset elections. Bitan went even further. At a public event on Dec. 10, Bitan defamed Israeli Arab citizens when he said, “If they weren’t able to come [to vote], that would be preferable.”

A similar sentiment about the vote of Israeli Arabs first appeared in a video clip disseminated by Netanyahu last election day, when the prime minister was afraid of losing the government. He used a scare technique on his constituents by saying "the right-wing government is in danger" and "Arab voters are coming out in droves to the polls.”

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