PM Netanyahu blames publisher of Yedioth Ahronoth & Ynet News for their mounted ‘smear attacks’ against his wife & himself.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu launched a blistering social media attack on Monday against Arnon Mozes, the publisher of the Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth and theYnet news website.
“The time has come to put this out on the table: The main element behind the wave of smear attacks against my wife and myself is [Arnon] Mozes, publisher of the newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth and of the Ynet website,” Netanyahu wrote on his Facebook page and on Twitter. “He does not shrink from acts to bring down the Likud government that I lead, close the newspaper Israel Hayom, and restore Yedioth Ahronoth’s rampant control of print journalism.”
Yedioth is the largest competitor of Israel Hayom, a free newspaper owned by Jewish billionaire and close Netanyahu ally Sheldon Adelson.
“Both these platforms deliberately engage in, and coordinate, slanders that are ludicrous, false and biased against me and against my wife, as part of a media campaign to replace the Likud government with a left-wing government and to restore [Arnon] Mozes’ control over the media market,” the post continues.
“This broad-based and coordinated smear campaign uses former employees, tries to obtain money from the state illegally, and makes use of all sorts of other interested parties, among other things. I do not claim that all criticism expressed against me comes from [Arnon] Mozes. There are many in the media who do their jobs faithfully. They criticize the government in a practical, albeit harsh, manner. But this is something else entirely: A well-connected businessman in the media is engaging in a systematic smear campaign against a sitting prime minister, in order to replace the government in Israel, for the sake of obvious business interests and personal profit.”
In response to Netanyahu’s social media posts, a journalist from Yedioth Ahronoth told Israel’s Reshet Bet radio station that the “prime minister woke up on the wrong side of the bed.”
“I can understand his obsession with Iran and Hamas and Hezbollah. But a newspaper? All we do is hold onto a keyboard. This is a matter for the psychological department, not the journalistic one,” the journalist said.
“This man should be hospitalized. Why does he care if a commercial war is going on and involving a newspaper that he likes or doesn’t like?” he said.
“A person who is prime minister has to maintain some measure of sanity. If this is what he posts on Twitter, we may call other decisions of his into question, such as the damage caused to us in the United States because of his dependent relationship with Adelson.”
The remarks were made on the same day that a poll was released showing that most Israelis don’t support Netanyahu’s upcoming speech to the US Congress, which was planned without the approval of President Barack Obama.
הגיע הזמן לשים את הדברים על השולחן: הגורם המרכזי שעומד מאחורי גל ההכפשות נגדי ונגד רעייתי הוא נוני מוזס, המו”ל של ”ידיעות אחרונות“ ו-ynet
— בנימין נתניהו (@netanyahu) February 9, 2015
View original i24news publication at: http://www.i24news.tv/en/news/israel/politics/60583-150209-netanyahu-launches-attack-on-rival-newspaper