Mossad 'legend' praises Germany's far-right, is berated by Israeli ambassador
AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner
A former Israeli minister and top spy has drawn criticism -- including from Israel’s ambassador in Berlin -- after publicly voicing support for the populist right wing party Alternative for Germany (AfD) at in event marking the International Holocaust Remembrance Day earlier this week.
“The AfD is a great hope for many people, not only in Germany, but also for us in Israel and in many Western countries, above all in order to stop the false and dangerous policy of open borders,” former intelligence officer and politician Rafi Eitan said in a speech read out at the event.
Eitan rose to fame after he led the Mossad team that captured Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann in Argentina and flew him to Israel, where he was put on trial and executed.
He later served as head of another intelligence agency and was later a junior coalition minister from 2006 to 2009.
Eitan was scheduled to attend the event on Thursday, organized by the AfD parliamentary group in Berlin, but instead sent a video message, saying he had the flu.
Faction leader Alexander Gauland thanked Eitan for his support, saying that the encouragement that the party receives from Israel and from the Jewish community in Berlin “shows once again that we as the AfD are on the right track.”
In his message, Eitan praised the AfD’s pledge to protect the Jewish community, “especially against the new and violent threat from Islamists,” and applauded the party for “clearly speaking out” against anti-Semitism.
“This is the time to remember the past, but it is also the time to face the challenges of the present and the future,” he stated. “There is still the old anti-Semitism, but there is also a new one. Anti-Semitism has a different face today than it did in the past, but it is no less dangerous.
“Islamic anti-Semitism today is aggressive and threatens not only Jews, but also Christians and all peaceful citizens. This ideology is incompatible with an open and peaceful society like today's German,” he added, echoing the AfD’s criticism against Chancellor Angela Merkel over her decision to allow nearly one million asylum seekers to enter the country.
“I wish from the bottom of my heart that you will be strong enough to end the policy of open borders, to stop the further Islamization of your country, and protect your citizens from terrorism and crime. Security and sovereignty are what we need and want for our countries. In Israel, in Germany, in Europe. Let's do this together.”
Eitan’s remarks were blasted as “shameful” by Israel’s ambassador in Germany, Jeremy Issacharoff.
“I completely reject Rafi Eitan's statement,” he wrote on Twitter after the speech was publicized in Israel. “It is hard to believe how the person who captured Eichmann and brought [him] to justice is able to praise German right-wingers who so admire the Nazi past and wish upon us that it would be the alternative of Europe! Sad and shameful.”
The tweet was liked and retweeted by several other Israeli ambassadors and the foreign ministry spokesperson, Emmanuel Nachson.
The party, which strongly oppose Muslim immigration, won 92 out of 709 seats in the German Bundestag in elections last year, and have also made gains in regional elections.
In September Gauland, also the party’s co-founder, said Germans should not be ashamed of the conduct of their soldiers during the two world wars.
“People no longer need to reproach us with these 12 years. They don’t relate to our identity nowadays,” Gauland said in a speech.
“If I look around Europe, no other people has dealt as clearly with their past wrongs as the Germans,” he said.
Holocuast survivor Rabbi Chaim Rozwaski also attended the AfD event. He has previously warned that's Europe's growing Muslim population is causing a spike in anti-Semitism on the continent.
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i do tnt know if afd is the right answer but it sure appears that western liberalism is Not!
This filthy goyim must be severely punished. No one can be allowed to challenge the zio masters.