MK Ayman Odeh, chairman of the Joint Arab List, on Sunday released a video he shot at the Damascus Gate Plaza in which he attacked the State of Israel and appealed to all new police recruits from the Arab sector and their families to lay down their arms because they were harming Arab society.
“Young Palestinians with Israeli citizenship have told me that they are being harmed and humiliated,” Odeh said in his video, adding that “it’s depressing that one of our sons should join the security forces of the occupation. The forces that are here humiliate our people, humiliate our families, and humiliate everyone who comes to pray.”
“Our position is that we will be with our people to end the murderous occupation, so that Palestine will be established, that Palestinian flags will be hoisted on the walls of Jerusalem, and that peace will spread to the land of peace,” MK Odeh said.
The “land of peace” bit is a reference to the Muslim division of the world into two parts: Dar es Salam which is under Muslim rule, and Dar Es Harb––land of the sword––which is yet to be conquered by Islam. This division of the world was invented in the 8th century by the Iraqi Imam Abu Hanifa.
“Young people must not join the occupation forces,” Odeh continued. “I call on the young people who have already joined (the police – DI), whose joining is insulting and humiliating, I call on them – throw the weapon in their face and tell them, our place is not with you. We will not be part of the injustice and the crime.”
So much for the leader of the moderate faction of the Joint Arab List…
Following Odeh’s remarks, Israel Police contacted the State Attorney’s Office to check whether they constituted an incitement. The police believe that MK Odeh’s words have the potential to cause a revolt and a boycott and thus in fact incite against Arab police officers. Should the prosecution find that there is indeed a suspicion of incitement, the police will investigate Odeh.
Unless, of course, the police would be told to go do something else because the Naftali Bennett coalition is negotiating for the tacit support of the Joint Arab List, and arresting their chairman might get in the way of all that.
Former Internal Security Minister, MK Amir Ohana (Likud) sent a letter to the new Attorney General, Gali Baharav-Miara, citing Section 109 of the Penal Code:
(B) A person who incited or persuaded a person serving in the armed forces to defect from his service or military action, or assisted him in desertion, shall be liable to imprisonment for seven years; for this purpose, “serving in an armed force” includes those who serve after volunteering for the Israel Defense Forces in accordance with the provisions of section 17 of the Security Service Law.
(D) A person who has committed an offense under this section during a period in which military hostilities are being carried out by or against Israel, shall be liable to imprisonment for fifteen years.
104. These are the armed forces for the purposes of this clause:
(1) Israel Defense Forces;
(2) the Israel Police;
(3) Other armed forces operating against the enemy in cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces.
MK Ohana added it would also be possible to apply additional sections of the Penal Code against Odeh, and noted that “in a normal world this man would have been arrested last night, with a speedy indictment – the evidence against him is clear and sharp. But in our world, he may still be serving as the rescue net for the government of Bennett, Sa’ar, and Avigdor Liberman.”
The Israel Police issued this statement: “We are sorry that an elected official in the State of Israel chooses to speak in this way against uniformed men who are physically protecting all citizens of the state. Israeli police officers will continue to work daily for the peace and security of the public, regardless of religion, gender, or nationality. The Israel Police serves shoulder to shoulder with police officers from various sectors, and it would have been better if these things had not been said at all.”
Now they’re being nice?