(photo credit: ILLUSTRATIVE: REUTERS)
A Bar-Ilan University Chemistry and Biology student who wrote a series of Facebook posts calling for the murder of Arabs and left-wingers was indicted for incitement and harassment in Ramle on Monday.
According to the indictment, Eliyahu Eliav Moalem of Modi’in wrote a series of Facebook posts in the summer of 2014, during a time of great tension in Israel, following the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens in the West Bank by Hamas and the killing of 16-year-old Palestinian teen Mohammed Abu-Khdeir, who was abducted and burned alive by Jewish extremists.
“Amid the sensitive and incendiary public atmosphere at the time, Moalem deliberately and repeatedly published on his Facebook account a series of posts directly calling for violence against Palestinians and Israel Arabs and published statements with the intent of inciting racism against them [Arabs],” the indictment states.
In a status written after the murder of Abu-Khdeir, he wrote “death to all Arabs….Jews unite! On with the murder of the next Arab… It’s very good that the murder victim was 16, let’s hope the next Arabs to get murdered are even younger.”
The indictment was personally approved by Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, and lists 22 Facebook statuses written by Moalem, as well as the number of “likes” each one received. Among others, these include one calling for the kidnapping of Israeli Arab MK Hanin Zoabi (Joint List), which received 6 likes, one about murdering Zoabi which received 20, and a status calling for lethal “Price Tag” attacks against random Arabs which garnered 10 likes.
The indictment says that by posting the statements on Facebook he “created a platform for others to show public, symbolic support for his statements”, through the use of the like button and the comments. As the owner of the Facebook page, Moalem had the ability to remove other incendiary comment in his feed, but refused to do so, the indictment states.
At the time he wrote the statuses, Moalem had 1,280 friends on Facebook and his statuses were public, making them open for anyone to access online.
The indictment also includes a charge for harassment, after he sent threatening messages to a fellow student at Bar-Ilan. The complainant is an Arab-Israeli woman who wrote a message criticizing an Arab-Israeli youth who showed solidarity with Israel after the kidnapping the teens in a YouTube video that went viral.
After the murder of Abu-Khdeir, police arrested a number of Israelis accused of inciting to violence on social networks. In recent months, amid the “Stabbing Intifada” police have arrested dozens of Arabs, mainly in East Jerusalem, accused of inciting to “lone wolf” attacks on Facebook and elsewhere.