This week Israeli artist Itay Zalait did something truly amazing in Tel Aviv’s famed Rabin Square. Zalait erected a golden statue of right-wing extremist and mass murderer Benjamin Netanyahu, who also currently serves as Israel’s prime minister.
This depiction was revolutionary for several key reasons.
Statues of living figures are forbidden in Israel, as are other forms of political speech normally protected throughout the first world. Hardly unpopular, a 2014 survey by the Israeli Democracy Institute found 46% of Israelis believed “public criticism” of Israel should be banned.
Israel’s censorship czar Miri Regrev, who recently promoted a “loyalty in culture bill” condemned Zalait’s statue, as “an expression of hatred towards Netanyahu.”
This golden statue of Israel PM’s was erected in Tel Aviv. The creator says he is highlighting what he views as the idolatry of Netanyahu. pic.twitter.com/PCqFB7PUJQ
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) December 6, 2016