Lebanese newspaper dedicates front page to MK Itamar Ben-Gvir

Hezbollah-affiliated Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar dedicated its front page to Itamar Ben-Gvir, calling his party Otzma Yehudit "fascist" and warning of impending escalation.

 Far-right Israeli lawmaker Itamar Ben Gvir closes his eyes during the swearing-in ceremony for the new Israeli parliament, at the Knesset, or parliament, in Jerusalem, November 15, 2022.  (photo credit: MAYA ALLERUZZO/REUTERS)
Far-right Israeli lawmaker Itamar Ben Gvir closes his eyes during the swearing-in ceremony for the new Israeli parliament, at the Knesset, or parliament, in Jerusalem, November 15, 2022.
(photo credit: MAYA ALLERUZZO/REUTERS)

The Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar, which is affiliated with Hezbollah, dedicated its front page last week to Itamar Ben-Gvir, the Israeli MK recently appointed to serve as National Security Minister. The article said that "his party, a symbol for racism in its new form, will do as it pleases without pushback from the police."

"Fascists controlling all centers of power means that they will be able to torture the Palestinians without any actual disturbance or punishment afterward," stated the Lebanese newspaper. "Even though this reality already exists in the occupied territories, now the gloves will come off in a direct and rough fashion, without fear of a reaction from within or from outside. 

Changes coming to Knesset

Netanyahu's Likud coalition and Otzma Yehudit, the right-wing Israeli party headed by Ben-Gvir which gained several seats in the latest election, signed their coalition agreement this week. According to the agreement, Ben-Gvir will serve as Public Security Minister. 

What is more, the agreement stipulated that the Public Security Ministry will be referred to as the Ministry for National Security once the government is sworn in. It will have wide-reaching authority over Israel Police and the Border Police in the West Bank, among other security forces.

Because of this, Al-Akhbar dedicated its front page to the incoming minister under the headline "Ben-Gvir's Kingdom."

At the beginning of the article, the author Yahya Dabuk wrote that "his fascist party [Otzma Yehudit] ...is a symbol of a new kind of racism in Israel."

 Religious Zionist Party MK Itamar Ben Gvir at the Temple Mount on Jerusalem Day, May 29, 2022.  (credit: TEMPLE MOUNT ADMINISTRATION) Religious Zionist Party MK Itamar Ben Gvir at the Temple Mount on Jerusalem Day, May 29, 2022. (credit: TEMPLE MOUNT ADMINISTRATION)

According to Dabuk, "this is paving the way for [MK Ben-Gvir] to do whatever he wants without any pushback from the police, including changing the open-fire rules against Palestinians, no matter if there is a present danger or threat against soldiers or police officers. Ben-Gvir will also be the commander of the 'Border Police,' which is a special security force affiliated with the Israel Police."

"Fascists will be responsible for the Temple Mount."

Yahya Dabuk

"Additionally, Otzma Yehudit also got the Ministry of [Jerusalem and] Heritage, which means that the fascists will be responsible for the Temple Mount and the Jewish [holy] places, which will allow them to 'grab' more Palestinian territory in order to serve the Jewish narrative."

The article concluded: "While the new fascism thinks that staining the image of the occupying state in the world is an acceptable price for destroying the rest of the Palestinians' existence, it also does not care about the escalation of the security situation which will follow. Even the military described this as a recipe for an escalation whose influence won't be containable."