Actor Who Called Nationalists 'Beasts' Left Home

Haaretz says Oded Kotler left his home ahead of a right wing demonstration Tuesday, on police recommendation; doesn't say if he came back.

Gil Ronen ,

Oded Kotler
Oded Kotler
Oren Nachshon, Flash 90

Ultra-leftist paper Haaretz reported Thursday that veteran actor Oded Kotler left his home in Tel Aviv Tuesday, on police recommendation, ahead of a nationalist demonstration that took place outside his home that day.

The newspaper does not say if and when Kotler has returned to his home, and appears to imply he has not.

Kotler told Haaretz that police warned him ahead of the demonstration. Kotler sounded defiant, telling the paper: “Sometimes there is a big demonstration that is followed by a big silence. The thing is to continue and not let up until it is clear to all those concerned that freedom of expression is our life's blood and that there are only a few rules [defining what one may not say], bordering on the criminal, for which one must pay the legal price. All the rest is permitted.”

A group of Otzma Yehudit activists, led by former MK Dr. Michael Ben-Ari, Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir and coordinator Yossi Davidov, held a symbolic and comical protest outside Kotler's home on Tuesday.

Kotler raised a storm at an artists rally on Sunday when he called Likud voters "straw-chewing beasts," saying that without the artists of Israel, there would only be the ruling party "followed by a marching herd of beasts chewing straw and stubble."

In response, Ben-Ari, Ben-Gvir and the other activists brought a bale of hay and straw to Kotler's home, placing it at the entrance while exchanging words with the actor's neighbors and explaining that Kotler's insult was directed against all nationalists and not just the Likud party.

"We came here today to expose the hypocrisy and the arrogance of Kotler, (Yair) Garbuz and their friends who are sure that they are the masters of culture and everyone else are beasts," said Ben-Ari, in a reference to the artist Garbuz who possibly lost Labor the elections by slamming "amulet kisser" right-wingers at a leftist rally.

"We came today for an operation of free distribution of hay and straw," Ben-Gvir joked. "While he (Kotler) pretends to be an enlightened person, in fact he's a very primitive man. We will continue to expose the hypocrisy of the left."

Video from the protest, in Hebrew, can be seen below.