Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech on Monday to the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) was interrupted by pro-Palestine protesters who heckled him and criticized Israeli policies.
Protesters from the group ‘Move Over’ say they are Jewish, opened their banners and made statements which criticized Israel’s defense policies.
Earlier, there were groups of Arab and Muslim students who disrupt speeches by Israeli officials on university campuses, but recently left-winged Jewish student groups have joined the attacks.
Last year, Netanyahu's speech at the Jewish Federations General Assembly in New Orleans was also marked by a similar incident when Jewish students in the audience protested the loyalty oath and Israel's occupation of the West Bank.
At the AIPAC conference on Monday, protesters used the same language that Netanyahu has used repeatedly in recent days and re-contextualized it, inverting its intended meaning for political points. After Netanyahu told AIPAC that the borders that Israel occupied until the 1967 Six Day War were militarily indefensible, protesters riffed on the word, using it to mean unjustifiable, as reported in Haaretz.
Continue Reading Below
The leftist in the audience started criticizing Israel's policies towards Palestine, shouting slogans like, Occupying Palestinian land is indefensible, Bulldozing homes is indefensible, “Starving Gaza is indefensible, Silencing dissent is indefensible and Displacing refugees is indefensible.
As the hecklers were escorted out, Netanyahu asked, Do you think they have these protests in Gaza?, implying that such protests in Israel prove that Israel is a democratic country and it permits rebellious views, unlike Hamas government.
Netanyahu also added that he will “speak the truth when another heckler yelled denial!, and he was also escorted-out by securitymen.