Attorney General: Otzma Yehudit video does not violate law

Mandelblit expresses reservations about video content but rules petition by Arab parties against it be rejected.

Mordechai Sones ,

Otzma activists demonstrating presence
Otzma activists demonstrating presence
Flash 90

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit today presented his position on the petition for a restraining order against a campaign video distributed by the Otzma Yehudit party that petitioners claim constitutes prohibited propaganda and a criminal act of "incitement to violence and racism".

At the beginning of the position it is stressed that "the Attorney General and State Prosecutor strongly object to the video's content that presents the military justice system as if it were allegedly tying soldiers' hands in the context of operational activity and in the face of danger to life. This is untrue and is far from the truth, but this is not the question on the agenda in the petition."

According to the Attorney General the petition should be rejected because the video does not violate Section 2B of the Propaganda Methods Law, since there is no fear that viewing the video might give the impression that the IDF and its soldiers are affiliated with the Otzma party. The video merely expresses reservations about the way the army operates.

As for the claim of incitement to racism, the position stated that the requested remedy is not part of the powers of the Committee Chairman by virtue of the law. The Attorney General added that from the initial point of view of competent authorities in the State Attorney's Office, as many complaints may have been filed, the likelihood was an investigation would not be opened under the circumstances of this video's publication.

Finally, the Attorney General recommended it be clarified that the figures appearing in uniform in the video are not soldiers.

In the video, a terrorist is seen making the approach to a stabbing attack on a soldier.

As the soldier prepares to shoot, he is faced with the spectre of a lawyer from the Military Advocate General's office arriving with a tape measure, preventing the soldier from firing. Suddenly, Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir enters, instructing the soldier to fire because it is an act of self-defense, and promising change in the situation soldiers face that they illustrated.