The Foreign Ministry has launched disciplinary procedures against Yigal Caspi, the Israeli Ambassador to Switzerland, after he posted a quote from a Nazi leader on Facebook in an attempt to compare the Israeli government with the genocidal Nazi regime.
Caspi posted a picture of Hermann Goering, founder of the Gestapo secret police and head of the Luftwaffe Nazi air force, together with a quote of his from the Nuremberg trials, reports Yedioth Aharonoth on Monday.
"Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger. That works in any country to the same degree," Caspi wrote in a Hebrew translation of Goering's words.
The ambassador capped off the quote with the words: "we're on the right path."
Caspi's use of the quote, indicating that the government can control the public through fear mongering, together with his post-script would seem to be a clear statement comparing the Israeli government and the Nazis.
Public servants, particularly those in the Foreign Ministry, are forbidden from taking a political stance, and therefore the Foreign Ministry called Caspi back to Israel for clarifications.
"The management of the Foreign Ministry views this act with exceptional severity," said the Foreign Ministry in response. "In a check conducted with the ambassador he apologized and immediately removed the harmful post."
"Foreign Ministry director-general Dore Gold ordered disciplinary procedures to be opened immediately against the ambassador Yigal Caspi."
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) responded to the post, saying, "I view the sharing of these disgraceful statements on Facebook with very great seriousness, there will be a disciplinary procedure here that in the end will reach conclusions regarding this serious statement."
This is not Caspi's first time running afoul of regulations, as back in February he was investigated and suspended over serious political statements made on Twitter.
In one tweet he reposted a comment by Haaretz reporter Barak Ravid, who wrote: "every time one thinks Netanyahu has taken the relationship with the White House to the lowest point ever, he manages to take it even lower."
He also retweeted from Israel Radio reporter Esty Perez, who ahead of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's visit to Congress wrote: "is it not enough to scare us here in Hebrew? He has to fly to the US Congress, and tell them in English how dangerous a nuclear Iran is?”
According to a report by the Foreign Ministry general inspector, the embassy managed by Caspi has suffered from clashes that harm its ability to function.
The inspector visited the embassy and spoke with Israeli and local workers, who told him that Caspi shouts at them, and deals with them impatiently when they try to speak with him.