חשיפה: החשודה בשליחת מכתבי האיום והקליעים למשפחת בנט היא אילנה חניה, פעילת ליכוד בולטת
Last week, an Israeli made two death threats against Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and his family. The first was sent to his wife and contained a bullet. The second was sent to Bennett’s teenage son. It also threatened the life of Bennett and his family.
The Shin Bet has arrested the alleged culprit but placed a gag order on the case. No Israeli news media may report her name or anything about her. Tonight, I’m breaking the gag order. Her name is Ilana Khanya, age 65. She is a prominent Likud activist from Ashkelon.
כנס תקווה חדשה באשקלון. נוכחים: כל חברי הרשימה מלבד היו״ר סער. בחוץ הפגנה (חלקם תומכי נתניהו) ומישהי שקוראת קריאות מזעזעות: ״כנס כנס לים בני בגין, שם תמצא את מותך יא חתיכת נוכל״. גועל pic.twitter.com/hDjUB9EhQF
— מורן אזולאי Moran Azulay (@moran_azulay) September 12, 2021
In social media posts, she said of Bennett: “Bring the murderer to justice.” And this : “Only your [Bennett’s] blood will bring us salvation.” During the last election campaign, Gideon Saar’s New Hope Party sponsored a seaside campaign event in Ashkelon. Khanya protested outside the hall, screaming at Party candidate, Benny Begin: “Go ahead, jump in the sea and drown, you piece of shit!”
הפעילה שצעקה הערב באשקלון: ״כנס כנס בני בגין, שם תמצא את מותך יא חתיכת נוכל״.
היא אילנה חניה.
בתמונות אילנה עם ניר ברקת, יריב לוין, שלמה קרעי ואלי כהן. pic.twitter.com/uBMBHcqfTp
— 𝐎𝐧 𝐀𝐳𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐥 🇮🇱 (@iloveisraell) September 12, 2021
Here she’s pictured with four Likud MKs, among them former Jerusalem mayor (and future PM candidate) Nir Barkat and former minister, Yariv Levin. The pictures make her out to be a virtual Likud groupie. One of Bibi’s Brownshirts. Apparently willing to kill for him.
Don’t let any Likud apologist say she’s a ‘loose cannon,’ doesn’t represent the values of the Party, etc. You can see here that some of the most senior MKs in the Party were honored to be photographed with her. Here Facebook accounted is filled with such images. Her blood bleeds Likud.
Nor is this the first time anyone affiliated with Likud has incited the murder of a prime minister. In fact, none other than the current leader of the Opposition offered a Mussolini-like fire-breathing speech denouncing Yitzhak Rabin only three weeks before his assassination. Netanyahu was photographed at Party rallies featuring nooses and coffins with Rabin’s name featured prominently. In other words, this is a Party with blood on its hands. A Party not above using incitement and outright violence to gain and hold power.
The current political context is that the government is exceedingly weak and unstable. It has no majority and the Islamist Raam Party has suspended any participation in the coalition due to Israeli violence and incitement at Haram al-Sharif. The Likud Opposition has nursed a grudge since Naftali Bennett toppled Netanyahu. It is desperate to return to power. Its supporters are angry and disgruntled. They feel the country has been stolen from them. They want it back at all costs and they smell blood in the water. In periods of turmoil and instability, loose cannons like Khanya or Yigal Amir exploit the uncertainty for their own political ends. They use violence and even murder to ensure their allies retain power over society.
Silverstein has published Tikun Olam since 2003, It exposes the secrets of the Israeli national security state. He lives in Seattle, but his heart is in the east. He publishes regularly at Middle East Eye, the New Arab, and Jacobin Magazine. His work has also appeared in Al Jazeera English, The Nation, Truthout and other outlets.