Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström once again put her foot in her mouth when criticizing Israel last Friday for extrajudicial executions of Palestinian terrorists. When asked by a Swedish parliamentarian why she refused to condemn “Palestinian acts of violence” against Israelis, she replied that the Israeli responses are “disproportionate” and amount to “extrajudicial executions.”
In what seems like a new hard line policy of the Israeli Foreign Ministry toward European countries supporting discriminating acts against Israel, Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Netanyahu called Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven on Sunday to express his concern for Wallström’s remarks. “This is the second time [Wallström] referred to Israel making statements that are unacceptable to us and are not true,” he told Löfven. He also called Löfven’s attention to the fact that Wallström did not make similar comments after terrorists were killed in Paris and San Bernardino.
Netanyahu was more explicit in addressing the Israeli Cabinet. “I denounce these outrageous comments by the Swedish Foreign Minister. Her statement,” he continued, “is scandalous, surreal, impudent, and detached from reality. The Swedish Foreign Minister is suggesting that Israeli citizens should offer up their necks to murderers who would stab them with their knives.”
The Foreign Ministry has added that Israeli citizens and security personnel have the right to defend themselves. “Israeli citizens are dealing with terrorism, which is inflamed by irresponsible and false statements like [those of Wallström].” The Swedish Foreign Minister has said outrageous things about Israel before. Last October she tweeted, “escalating violence in Jerusalem. Attacks against civilians unacceptable. Bring perpetrators to justice. Leaders must act responsibly.” Needless to say that the “civilians” and “perpetrators” were terrorists attempting to kill Israelis with knives and cars.
On November 13, after the Paris attack, she linked the Palestinian situation to Muslim terrorism and suggested that killing Israelis is an act of desperation. This was understood by many as legitimizing Muslim terror, not only in Israel but also on European soil.