Blue and White Party poster "Am Yisrael Chai".
(photo credit: BLUE AND WHITE PARTY)
Blue and White will attempt to portray Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a supporter of slain right-wing extremist leader Rabbi Meir Kahane in its political campaign, sources in the party said on Thursday.
The party has become more blatant in its attacks on Netanyahu since its lead over Likud fell from six seats to three and the main competition to Netanyahu in the April 9 election failed to capitalize on Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit’s decision to indict Netanyahu pending a hearing on charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. Blue and White’s leaders held a late night meeting in which they decided to have their most experienced political leader, Yair Lapid, lead the campaign and make it more negative.
The campaign will contrast Blue and White leaders with Netanyahu and the leaders of the extreme Right. Benny Gantz, Lapid, Moshe Ya’alon and Gabi Ashkenazi will be shown with the Hebrew slogan Am Israel Chai – the people of Israel will endure – alongside Netanyahu and Union of Right-wing Parties candidates Bezalel Smotrich, Michael Ben-Ari and Itamar Ben-Gvir with the slogan Kahane Chai – the name of a party of supporters of Kahane that was not permitted to run for Knesset in 1992.
The right-wingers were shown with a background of yellow, the color of the Beitar-Jerusalem soccer team, whose fans have been accused of racism against Arabs. Gantz and his allies were given a background that is blue and white.
“The moment of truth is coming, and the choice will be between a government of Bibi-Smotrich-Kahane and a Blue and White government under Gantz that would bring about change and hope for Israel,” Lapid said.
In an attempt to take advantage of a comptroller’s report that held Transportation Minister Israel Katz responsible for massive transportation problems all over the country, Blue and White leaders will also be sending the message that those who vote Likud will receive Katz as prime minister if a final indictment from Mandelblit leads to Netanyahu leaving the Prime Minister’s Office.
“Begin would be ashamed of Netanyahu,” Gantz said in a speech on Monday. “[Netanyahu’s inspiration Ze’ev] Jabotinsky would be ashamed of Netanyahu. [Former prime minister Yitzhak] Shamir would be ashamed of Netanyahu. But Kahane would be proud of Netanyahu.”
Meanwhile, Labor revealed new ads in Tel Aviv that will feature a quote from former cabinet secretary Zvi Hauser, who is 14th on the Blue and White list, speaking about residents of the city in a manner that could be seen as insensitive.
“Tel Avivians live in a bubble,” the ad quotes Hauser as saying. “They count kiosks and not explosions.” (The words for kiosks and explosions in Hebrew are similar: pitzutziot and pitzutzim.)
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