Israelis Face Police Violence In Protest Against Netanyahu Corruption
Contributed to TLB by: Marianne Azizi
For almost 6 months, protests have taken place in the town of Petach Tikvah – the home town of Attorney General Mandleblitt.
Protesters have been calling for an investigation into Prime Minister Netanyahu and his alleged corruption, which fills daily newspapers in Israel.
The press are more reluctant to cover these particular legal protests. It is not illegal to protest outside the home of a public official in Israel – yet gradually the protesters have been moved to over 800 kilometers away.
With an average age of over 50, the burgeoning group have been singing and dancing as well as using a megaphone. The cries of ‘medina mishtara’ (Police State) are regularly heard as police do all they can to prevent even the legal use of a megaphone.
Since December, arrests have become routine. One protester was arrested whilst singing alone in the rain. On other occasions protestors have been wrestled to the ground in attempts to use a megaphone. Tonight was no exception.
Police got involved in a tussle with a woman in her 50’s, trying to grab her megaphone and stop her speaking, resulting in her needing medical attention. “For what!” people are shouting, or more cries against the police. Two other women are seen trying to protect and cover the woman – who is by then semi conscious on the pavement, already suffering from a blood pressue health problem.
Last week, protesters went to court to appeal for their civil rights to protest. I was informed that the judge decided that every month they could possibly move closer to the home of Mandleblitt. This is unconfirmed.
I arrived just after the woman was receiving medical treatment in an ambulance. This was filmed as the event occurred.
In the following video, one regular protester, Professor Joseph Zernik, himself arrested over the past few months explains in more detail the corruption rampaging through the State.
He describes the impending imprisonment of Shuki Mishool – one of the 15 whistleblowers on the Tax Authority Fraud, who faces 2 months in prison over a financial matter of $100 over car insurance, but this is a routine method to silence civil protesters. His colleague Rafi Rotem – a protected whistleblower by the UN, was also convicted as a felon for ‘insulting public officials’.
Attorney Mandleblitt is the target of many complaints regarding corruption in Israel. His predecessor Yehuda Weinstein, endured countless protests outside of his home over the allegations of corruption of Ruth David – former State Prosecutor, who appears to have been the root of many ills. First, she endorsed the regulation 2.5 in law that women can lie in legal matters with full immunity. Secondly, when indicted she fainted, which was rumored to be a method she had taught her own clients to do when cross examined to escape investigation. Police investigators confirmed their belief it was a fake faint. But the main pressure on her is the cover up of the Tax Fraud, which also resulted in the death of an informer who should have been under her protection. Mandleblitt has continued to avoid the issue of prosecution.
The evening continued with police chasing a female who used her megaphone; a neighbor complaining about the noise, and ending with singing.
The regular protests are by no means unique or isolated in Israel in 2017 as waves of arrests and prosecutions have taken place.
The former lawyer and now activist against the major banking corruption, Barak Cohen, is also facing trial for his outstpoken activism. Here he describes the ‘regime’ at work in the State of Israel, echoing the comments and views of most social activists in the country.
Simultaneously, this year activists who have spoken out against welfare and family court corruption have been held in prison for an unprecedented 66 days, with an impending trial, and the State demanding their detention until end of proceedings, which is estimated to last until January 2018. The pen may be mightier than the sword, but in the State of Israel it is the disrespect for the oppression; police brutality; judicial corruption which ultimately results in dissent being wiped out. Fear and hopelessness permeates through the citizens who are awake to the oppression.
This article (Israelis Face Police Violence In Protest Against Netanyahu Corruption) was originally published on byline.com and is republished here by contribution with attribution to author Marianne Azizi and byline.com.
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