Rivlin: ‘Price tag’ is terrorism – but don’t blame settlers

Knesset Speaker to address anti-Arab and anti-settler incitement during Knesset session in memory of Rabin.

Rivlin 311 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Rivlin 311
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin plans to slam “price tag” vandalism, calling it “Jewish terrorism,” during a special Knesset session in memory of former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin on Wednesday.
Rivlin released on Tuesday his speech for the upcoming memorial session, during which Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres, Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch and opposition leader Tzipi Livni (Kadima) are scheduled to speak.
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“Rabin’s assassination carries two messages on democracy: We must have zero tolerance for political violence, and at the same time, we must avoid demonization of political groups and minorities,” Rivlin wrote. “We must avoid gross and negligent generalizations, as those who opposed Oslo faced after the murder.”
The Knesset Speaker will call on MKs to remember that “in the days following the assassination, legitimate democratic discourse was silenced in Israel,” and that “kippa-wearers, pioneering settlers and those on the right [became known as] enemies of peace, instigators and partners to murder.”
“The phenomenon known as ‘price tag’ is perhaps the clearest test of our ability to implement these lessons,” wrote Rivlin. “First of all, this is not a ‘price’ or a ‘tag,’ this is terror,” he wrote. “These villainous criminals, who harmed houses of prayer, fields, homes and property belonging to Palestinians, are Jewish, and this is ‘Jewish terrorism,’ that should be called nothing else.
“‘Price-tag’ acts are the biggest threat [to] the Zionist vision – greater than Arab terror, or even the Iranian threat.
At the same time, we must remember, especially on this day, that not only cheapening the blood of Arabs is dangerous, but so is cheapening the blood of Jewish people due to negligent generalizations,” Rivlin’s speech continues.
According to Rivlin, haredim face the same demonization, in which “harmful marginal groups” are portrayed as the norm.
“This does not strengthen democracy, does not strengthen Israeli society and does not prevent the threat of violence – it does the opposite,” his speech reads.