- Some analysts have pointed out that Netanyahu will be attempting to win the court case through public opinion and not through the country’s formal justice system.
- Labor MK Merav Michaeli has decried the turn of events instigated by Netanyahu.
- His son Yair recently accused Attorney General Shulamit Barnea of halting funding intended for property maintenance.
The trial of Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s is set to test the Israeli justice system now more than ever before. On Sunday, the Prime Minister appeared before the court for the first time as a defendant. He chastised the country’s judicial system, which he claimed was rigged against him, and out to denigrate his political career.
Some analysts have pointed out that Netanyahu will be attempting to win the court case through public opinion and not through the country’s formal justice system. He and his party members have in recent months launched scathing attacks against the Attorney General, at times calling him a criminal who’s working for the left-wing.
The move to undercut the Attorney General is seen as one way to undermine the country’s judicial institutions and powers even before a ruling is made. Labor MK Merav Michaeli has decried the turn of events instigated by Netanyahu. She has accused him of trying to drag down the country’s justice systems for his own benefit. “It will be a sad day for the State of Israel,” she said.
“The prime minister of Israel will stand trial for harsh crimes of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. Instead of quitting, Netanyahu is dragging the country down with him, destroying our legal institutions along the way and encouraging harm to anyone who dealt with his cases.”
Protesters for and against the prime minister camped outside during his trial on Sunday. There are fears that the whole process will be subverted at some point. Netanyahu’s son, Yair Netanyahu, is already at getting into politics, and some fear that he may mobilize the masses and interrupt the justice process by leading protests.
His son recently accused Attorney General Shulamit Barnea of halting funding intended for property maintenance. He took to social media to protest the move by posting a video highlighting the poor condition of the prime minister’s residence. Yair lamented that the prime minister had been refused funding to replace a broken microwave and dishwasher.
Of course, netizens were quick to dismiss the post as a propaganda ploy by the Netanyahu dynasty to get more state funding. The prime minister is estimated to have a net worth of about 50 million shekels, which is approximately $14.1 million. He faces bribery, fraud, and breach of trust charges.
He is alleged to have received gifts worth hundreds of thousands of dollars from prominent businessmen. They include cigars and expensive champagne. He’s also accused of trying to manipulate legislation in order to favor a media house that would boost his image, while inversely issuing policies that would diminish the reach of a rival network that was against him.
A faction of voters that voted for Benny Gantz, and some of his party members, have expressed disappointment at the decision to join Netanyahu in government because it gives the prime minister power to manipulate justice.