Rally in Jerusalem
Photo: Guy Asayag
"(US President Barack) Obama is a racist," said Rabbi Eliezer Waldman, the head of the "Nir" yeshiva in the West Bank town of Kiryat Arba.
Attila Somfalvi, agencies
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Waldman was speaking during a mass rally held Monday evening at Jerusalem's Paris Square in protest of the American demand that Israel halt all construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.
About 1,000 settlers and right-wing activists, including Knesset members Uri Ariel, Michael Ben-Ari (both from the National Union party) and David Rotem (Yisrael Beiteinu), marched towards the US Consulate, carrying torches and calling for US special envoy to the Middle East George Mitchell to "go home."
"How dare he (Obama) tell the Jews where they can or can't live? The era when Jews were banned from living in different places has ended," said Rabbi Waldman.
"Obama beware. This insolence will bring about the downfall of the American leadership," he said. "Anyone who dares give an order to prevent Israeli life in Jerusalem or anywhere else in the Land of Israel is destined to fall."
'How dare he?' Rally in Jerusalem (Photo: Guy Asayag)
Yesha Council Director-General Pinchas Wallerstein said, "This week the American pressure reached new highs that are a shame to democratic societies. We are brought here by America's treatment of Israel as if it were a banana republic and its willingness to abandon us in order to gain the support of public opinion within the Islamic world."
Yesha Council chairman Danny Dayan added, "We are here to call on the government to fend off US pressure to halt construction in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem. Not one construction plan has been approved since the inception of (Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu's government, yet the bulldozers are being readied to raze outposts.
"A government led by the Likud, Yisrael Beiteinu, Shas and Habayit Hayehudi cannot accept this. Netanyahu should follow in the footsteps of his predecessors – from David Ben-Gurion, who established Israel despite pressure from the US, to Levi Eshkol, who launched the Six Day War in the face of American pressure, and Menachem Begin, who bombed the Iraqi nuclear reactor in defiance of US demands," he said.