Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin
Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev ElkinFlash 90

The government should, and must, prosecute Jews who incite against the IDF or the state, Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin said Thursday – but what about the incitement that comes out of mosques and the Arab media? “Police must enforce the law equally,” Elkin said on Israel Radio Thursday. “If police go after Eliraz Fein from Yitzhar for incitement, they must go after Arab imams who say much worse.”

Fein, who was accused of sending an e-mail to Yitzhar residents with inciting statements, was released to house arrest Thursday. According to media reports, the e-mail advocated “throwing rocks at Jews, and in certain situations, even at soldiers, and even that rock causes a soldier's death.”

Yitzhar officials rushed to disassociate themselves from the statement, after it was posted on several media sites. According to Channel Ten, it was Yitzhar officials who informed the police as to her identity, leading to her arrest. Samaria Council head Gershon Mesika said that “most Ytzhar residents, including all the town's rabbis and leaders, oppose this kind of talk. I call upon the provocateurs that identify with these sentiments to leave Yitzhar. Conduct your provocations outside of Judea and Samaria.”

Police arrested and questioned Fein, who said that her intention had not been to incite against IDF soldiers. “This was a private forum and the communication was private,” she was quoted as saying. An attorney for the Honenu organization, which is representing Fein, said that “we are amazed at the swiftness with which police handled this case, when there are unending incidents of anti-Israel sentiments and anti-Jewish acts, especially against residents of Judea and Samaria, that go unprosecuted.”

Speaking Thursday, Elkin said that Fein should be condemned for her comments. “Hateful comments have no place in society, and they hurt the settlement effort,” he said. “But there is much more and much worse incitement coming out of mosques against Jews and Israel by the imams and preachers who hold court there – not to mention the Israeli Arab MKs who advocated harming IDF soldiers. Where are the arrests and prosecutions there?”