Likud MK Avi Dichter harshly criticizes Labor MK Zuhair Bahloul’s comment that the Hebron stabber is not a terrorist because he attacked a soldier rather than a civilian; Bahloul responds that Jewish paramilitary groups fought against British army before the establisment of the State of Israel.

After Labor Member of Knesset (MK) Zuhair Bahloul remarked that the stabber from Hebron is not a terrorist because he attacked a soldier rather than a civilian – a statement which caused puclic outcry – the Labor MK defended his comments on Saturday.

“The Etzel (Irgun), the Lehi, the Haganah – all of these Jewish organizations went out to the streets to fight against the British mandate and its soldiers, to make your state -which has become an incredible state – a reality. Why can’t the Palestinians do the same?” Bahloul said during a cultural event in Acre.

MKs Bahloul an Dichter at Acre cultural event, Photo: Yoel Feldman
MKs Bahloul an Dichter at Acre cultural event, Photo: Yoel Feldman


Bahloul, who was sitting opposite Likud MK Avi Dichter stated further, “Ehud Barak said, ‘If I were a Palestinian, I would be a terrorist.’ Tzipi Livni said, ‘Before we became one party, not every person fighting against soldiers to oppose the occupation was considered a terrorist.’”

Bahloul later added: “I said that anyone who harms innocent people or kills old women and children represents the occupation, from their perspective. What is a 49-year-old Palestinian who has suffered under occupation, been deprived of his livelihood, and wants freedom and independence, but doesn’t get it, supposed to do? From his point of view, the soldiers represent the occupation.”

Dichter said that he was surprised to hear Bahloul using the term “your state”, but Bahloul defended his language: “This is the state of the Jews and not the state of the Arabs,” the Arab Zionist Union MK said.

Dicthter added, “Indeed, you would not be so brazen to make such a statement in the Egyptian, American, or French parliament—nor in Jordan or Ramallah. That concept of terror means that a soldier butchered, while waiting for a bus, at the Afula Central Bus Station, is not terror. Such a way of thinking is dangerous and an official representative of the Knesset is legitimizing terror against Israeli civilians, wearing their military uniform. Anyone who plans a terror attack against a citizen or a soldier is a terrorist.”

When Dichter later discussed a nationality bill, Bahloul responded, “Then why are you attacking me when I say this is your state? This is your state! You are making the definition of the state more radical. Instead of a democratic and Jewish state, you say the state of the Jewish nationality.”

As reported by Ynetnews