On December 10, Israel’s Civil Service Commission issued orders to all civil servants “forbidding them to be involved in any election propaganda or to express themselves on political issues. The instructions said senior officials must be especially careful about this. But less than two weeks later, Israel's US Ambassador Ron Dermer violated those rules.
Above: Ron Dermer
Israel’s US Ambassador Allegedly Violates Civil Service Rules, Openly Backs Prime Minister’s Reelection
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Israel’s US ambassador allegedly violated civil service rules by publicly backing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s reelection.
On December 10, Israel’s Civil Service Commission issued orders to all civil servants “forbidding them to be involved in any election propaganda or to express themselves on political issues. The instructions said senior officials must be especially careful about this,” Ha’aretz reported.
“A state employee must be careful that his actions or behavior cannot be interpreted as being aimed at promoting the interest of any particular party or candidate.…[Anyone violating these instructions] will face criminal or disciplinary proceedings in accordance with the law,” Civil Service Commissioner Moshe Dayan wrote.
But Tuesday, in response to a question about Israeli polls that show large swaths of the Israeli public believe Israel is headed in the wrong direction, Dermer told the the Fusion cable network that in the last US presidential elections in 2012 a percentage of Americans believed the US was moving in the wrong direction, but President Barack Obama was reelected anyway.
In and of itself, that may not have been a problematic statement. But what Dermer said immediately after it is.
“I have no doubt that when they [the Israeli public] look at all the people that stand for the leadership of the country, that they will have confidence in the leadership of Prime Minister Netanyahu,” Dermer said.
Before being appointed ambassador last year, Dermer was Netanyahu’s close political adviser and he worked on Netanyahu’s 2009 and 2013 election campaigns.
After being appointed ambassador, any open political support or involvement on Netanyahu’s behalf, or on the behalf of any other politician as opposed to the country of Israel as a whole, was supposed to stop.
Even so, since becoming ambassador, Dermer has reportedly continued to advise Netanyahu on a wide range of issues – including issues that benefit Netanyahu’s personal political future rather than Israel’s needs.
Both Dermer and the Israeli embassy in Washington, DC reportedly failed to respond to Ha’aretz’s questions about Dermer’s statement.