On Tuesday Israeli citizens are set to go to the polls deciding the future direction of their country. As the election campaign reached its climax religious and right-wing extremists could not resist the temptation to spoil the otherwise civil election campaign.
For example, Jeremy Gimple, the American born Bayit Yehudi candidate, calling for the destruction of the Dome of the Rock. A video clip, which was first uncovered by Channel 2 television, shows the 14th candidate on the Bayit Yehudi list, Atlanta native Jeremy Gimpel, addressing a group of Christian Zionists in Florida in November 2011. Gimpel states in the clip, “Imagine today if the golden dome, I’m being recorded so I can’t say blown up, but let’s say it was blown up, right, and we laid the cornerstone of the Temple in Jerusalem. Can you imagine what would be? None of you would be here. You would be going to Israel. It would be incredible.” His comments sparked an uproar within Israel and were condemned by most TV commentators. Gimple later defended his remarks as a “joke.” He obviously does not understand that such “jokes” can spark an immediate anti-Israel propaganda wildfire.
Shas TV campaign commercial represents another example of “sick” campaigning. In the ad, a tall blonde woman named Marina, who is speaking Hebrew with a thick Russian accent, punctuated with phrases in Russian, dials “star conversion” on a fax machine while standing under a wedding canopy with her fiancé. “Wait, you’re not Jewish?” her Sephardi-looking husband-to-be asks in surprise, as the reply fax rolls in.“Now I am,” Marina responds happily.
Nino Abesadze, a Labor MK and head of the working group for immigrants within the party, denounced the commercial and appealed to the Central Elections Committee to ban the ad.
“The Shas broadcast is racist and ridicules the immigrant population,” Abesadze said. “It’s hard to imagine that in Israel in 2013, they could present in such simplistic terms a topic that is so painful and complicated, and give a platform at the expense of the taxpayer to such shadowy opinions.I casts aspersions on the state conversion system has been labelled as “racist” by several politicians.
Shas acquiesced to a request by Central Election Committee Chairman Judge Elyakim Rubinstein, who criticized the ad, following two complaints.
Shas claimed the ad’s aim was to fight Yisrael Beiteinu’s so called attempts to damage traditional Jewish conversion.
No, they think that anyone daring to make a bid for the same ministries they control is intruding on “their” territory, and act as though they’re the only ones capable of doing a good job. Please.Central Election Committee Chairman Rubinstein offered Shas to cease airing the ad, to which party officials agreed.
The chairman implicitly criticized the ad and wrote: “I thought that a sense of generalized abuse could be felt, and should be avoided if possible.” […]
Yisrael Beiteinu responded angrily to Shas’ campaign and said that the party “is loosing its wits and lapsing to racism and incitement.”
Another Shas campaign poster reads “Shas – my home, Sudan – their home,” implying that Sudanese migrants and refugees must leave Israel, even though they might face persecution and torture in their homeland.
Shas officials refused to pull this ad.