Israel’s communications minister has said the government must condemn Nazism, but that the country’s relationship with Donald Trump is more important.
The US President has ‘a proven track record in opposing anti-Semitism and religious extremism’ says Ayoub Kara.
Ayoub Kara, who is reportedly one of the ministers closest to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has said that Israel must move to defend Mr Trump following outrage at how the US President responded to violence at a neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia that resulted in the death of a woman.
In an interview with the Jerusalem Post last week, Mr Kara, who is not Jewish himself said: “Due to the terrific relations with the US, we need to put the declarations about the Nazis in the proper proportion.”
He added: “We need to condemn anti-Semitism and any trace of Nazism, and I will do what I can as a minister to stop its spread. But Trump is the best US leader Israel has ever had. His relations with the prime minister of Israel are wonderful, and after enduring the terrible years of Obama, Trump is the unquestioned leader of the free world, and we must not accept anyone harming him.”
Mr Kara then praised the US President for having “a proven track record in opposing anti-Semitism and religious extremism”.
Similarly to Mr Trump, Mr Netanyahu also faced criticism for not condemning the far-right violence in America, but eventually tweeted that he was “outraged by expressions of anti-Semitism, neo-Nazism and racism” and that “everyone should oppose this hatred.”
However, other Israeli ministers have been less sympathetic. Without connection to Mr Kara’s remarks, the science, technology and space minister Ofir Akunis, a former spokesman for Mr Netanyahu, wrote on Facebook on Thursday that “Nazis and neo-Nazis are a nauseating phenomenon that is dangerous and must not be tolerated in the US or anywhere else in the world.”