The office of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday rejected the remarks of his brother-in-law Hagai Ben Artzi, who called President Obama 'anti-Semitic.' But how many other Israelis share Mr. Ben Artzi's view?
Gil Cohen Magen/Reuters
At the height of the worst Israel-US crisis in decades, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was forced to distance himself Wednesday from the views of his brother-in-law, who called President Obama "anti-Semitic" over the airwaves this morning.
In an interview with Israel Army Radio on Wednesday, Hagai Ben Artzi, the brother of Netanyahu's wife Sara, reportedly said: "it needs to be said clearly and simply: There is an anti-Semitic president in the US. It's not that Obama doesn't sympathize with [Mr. Netanyahu]. He doesn't sympathize with the people of Israel."
Netanyahu's office swifty published a condemnation: "I entirely reject the remarks of Hagai Ben Artzi."
Mr. Ben Artzi, who has a history of controversial remarks, is family in more than one way.
The hardliner – who's held positions as a bible lecturer at a religious college in Jerusalem, and in the Education Ministry, and has a doctorate in Israel thought and philosophy from Hebrew University in Jerusalem – also represents the family of hawkish nationalists who support Netanyahu and for whom any movement on the peace process is going to stir tension.