Early Tuesday morning someone set fire to a mosque in the West Bank village of Maghayer near Ramallah. From the graffiti sprayed on the walls it is obvious that the arsonist(s) were Jewish Israelis: security authorities suspect settlers from the neaby settlement of Alei Ayin. (Read details at Haaretz)
Prime Minister Netanyahu claims to be shocked, and called the act criminal."Freedom of religion is a core tenet of the State of Israel," he said - forgetting, for a minute, that Israel has not in fact annexed the West Bank where the crime took place: it prefers the muddled legal status of occupation.
But is Bibi really shocked? If so he shouldn't be. Not when his own ministers speak at at a rally where, moments later, particpants shout "Death to Arabs" and "May Arab Villages Burn", and where the Israeli police protect the shouting mob as it parades through Arab neighborhoods intimidating all in its path. (See here.)If calling to burn Arab villages is condoned, why is the burning of a mosque in an Arab village such a surprise.
Or is Bibi just playing for the cameras: like Louie, the police inspector in Casablanca, it is hard to belive he didn't know or really cares.