Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu urged Blue and White leader Benny Gantz at a Likud rally in Maale Adumim on Saturday night to sack personal adviser Ronen Tzur without delay and cut contacts with former aide Joel Benenson after their earlier tweets resurfaced in which they likened US President Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler, The Jerusalem Post reported.
“The book of the 21st century: Mein Trumpf", Tzur posted in March 2016, calling the president “Donald Adolf Trump".
Tzur’s tweet was taken note of two weeks ago, prompting the official to apologise promptly, referring to Trump as "the bravest president of the US and the most significant one for Israel’s security in latest generations". He went on to stress that he saluted him.
Joel Benenson, who previously advised Blue and White's campaign in September, tweeted on 28 October 2018 that “he would have learned Hitler’s demonising term for the press: ‘lugenpresse'. Trump’s translation is ‘Fake News'".
Berenson's statement was highlighted last week by Jewish News journalist Ariel Ben Solomon.
In his speech on Saturday, Netanyahu also more than once called out his rival Gantz, for refusing to condemn former PM Ehud Olmert after he said he would meet with Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas in New York to jointly rip to pieces Trump’s “deal of the century” - the Middle East peace plan, drawn up by Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner’s team.
"This is not how a leader acts", Netanyahu said. "I tell you, Benny Gantz, disconnect from Olmert. Condemn him. Why are you stuttering here?” Netanyahu queried, with many recalling a similar remark in January.
On 22 January, the incumbent prime minister issued an apology for offending people who stutter when he mocked Gantz the day before during Likud’s opening campaign rally at the Jerusalem International Convention Centre. He played a video at the time of Gantz stuttering when telling supporters about his accomplishments: “Before, it was us or them, but now, it’s us or the-e-e-em", Netanyahu said in a thinly disguised dig.
“Unlike how it was presented in the press, my words, of course, did not relate to people of any handicap, and if anyone was offended by what I said, I am very sorry,” Netanyahu wrote on Twitter following a backlash from AMBI – Israeli Stuttering Association.
A number of political figures earlier also drew parallels between Donald Trump and the notorious Nazi leader. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, for instance, compared his American counterpart's actions against the Latin American country to Adolf Hitler's persecution of Jews, El Periódico reported citing Maduro’s speech in Caracas in August 2019.
Separately, Enrique Peña Nieto, ex-president of Mexico, likened Donald Trump’s “strident tone” on the construction of a US-Mexican border wall to that of 20th century dictators Hitler and Mussolini.