MK Avigdor Lieberman, leader of the Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) party, warned Arab Knesset members Tuesday that Israel “will deal with you as we dealt with Hamas,” causing two Arab parties to accuse him of inciting to murder.

Nationalist and Arab Knesset members confronted each other in front of the press at the Supreme Court building, before and after a hearing of motions for and against the disqualification of Arab parties Balad and Ra'am/Ta'al from the upcoming elections.

Lieberman also told the Arab MKs: “You are lucky that we don't treat our political rivals the way Hamas treats its rivals.” Turning to reporters, he asked: “Do we want to give someone a license to kill Israel, from a Jewish and democratic aspect?” Lieberman added that “the debate should have ended at the Central Election Committee; I regret that it reached the High Court.”

Do we want to give someone a license to kill Israel, from a Jewish and democratic aspect?

MK Taleb a-Sana cut into Lieberman's words. “You feed off of bloodshed,” he said, and called him a fascist. A-Sana contrasted the United States, where Barack Obama was inaugurated as the first black American president, with Israel, where a-Sana said racism is behind the debate over admitting into the Knesset Arabs who are charged with being a fifth column.

MK Aryeh Eldad (National Union) addressed a statement by MK Ahmed Tibi Wednesday morning. “We heard Tibi telling the court this morning that... the Arabs are the 'salt of the earth' and the 'lords of the land.' So we should announce that the Arabs are not that; they are the poison of the country and are not willing to accept Israel as a Jewish and democratic state."

Balad and Ra'am/Ta'al called for a criminal investigation into Lieberman's statements, on suspicion of incitement to murder.

'Lieberman no Doberman'

Dr. Ron Breiman of the National Union published an opinion piece Tuesday under the heading “Lieberman is No Doberman,” in which he chided Lieberman for his plan to cede sovereignty over parts of pre-1967 Israel that are heavily populated by Arabs, in return for territory in Judea and Samaria.

“A person who suggests swapping territory must first make sure he has someone to swap with – in other words, to create a Palestinian state in the heart of Zion,” wrote Breiman. “Lieberman supports the creation of a Palestinian state,” he added, and noted that this would place him to the left of the Likud.