JERUSALEM (JTA) — Bereaved families heckled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Israel’s official Memorial Day ceremony on Mount Herzl for terror victims.There's no point in speaking to them, they don't want to hear the words of a man they rightly feel betrayed them. Here's an interview with one of the angry folks:
Some families waved red flags and yelled at Netanyahu, preventing him from beginning his speech at the Monday afternoon ceremony. Many then walked out.
The hecklers were protesting a series of releases of more than 80 Palestinian prisoners involved in terror attacks as part of the failed U.S.-backed Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations.
“You are freeing the murderers of our children,” one protester shouted, according to Israeli media reports.
In response to the protesters, Netanyahu said, “The decision that has been made was difficult, it goes against the value of justice – everyone feels this way. The complicated reality in our region has created a situation in which, for the last four decades, the governments of Israel had to make decisions that were hard to bear — over and over again. I knew I would meet you here, but I viewed it as my responsibility as the prime minister of Israel. I salute your bravery and resistance.”
One of the Israelis who protested Monday when Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke at a memorial service for fallen soldiers and terror victims at Jerusalem's Har Herzl military cemetery, Rami Cohen, told Arutz Sheva that he was protesting Netanyahu's plan to release terrorists.Even if the last number of terrorists scheduled for release didn't go through, because of the PLO's reconnection with Hamas, their concerns are still very valid, and honestly, I have to congratulate the guy for speaking out.
Cohen, along with about a dozen other attendees, protested as Netanyahu got up to speak at the memorial event. The group staged a highly unusual protest, standing up and leaving the site while holding up red flags. Cohen shouted at Netanyahu, criticizing his release of the terrorists.
“The Prime Minister is planning to release terrorists, and I decided to protest,” Cohen said. “We have had enough of these 'gestures,' we have had enough of concessions. Too many terrorists have been released with Israel getting nothing in return.”
While we're on the subject, here's an op-ed about the day by Ruthie Blum, and another by Eli Ben Shem, whose son died during army service.