US should ‘call out Netanyahu’s corruption,’ Sen. Elizabeth Warren says


(JTA) — Sen. Elizabeth Warren, an announced presidential candidate for the 2020 Democratic nomination, said the United States should “call out” corruption in Israel under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Warren, of Massachusetts, posted the remark on Twitter Thursday following the Israeli attorney general’s announcement that he intends to indict Netanyahu on three counts of criminal abuse of power, pending a hearing.

“Corruption — in Israel, in the US, or anywhere else — is a cancer that threatens democracy. We need to fight back. And we can start by having the courage to call it out wherever it occurs. Even among our allies,” Warren wrote.

“First embracing right-wing extremism. Now manipulating a free press, accepting bribes, and trading government favors,” she wrote, accusing Netanyahu of delivering a “cut to the heart of a functioning democracy.”

Netanyahu has been criticized in Israel and beyond for facilitating a deal including a far-right party ahead of April’s national elections that would help to ensure that a right-wing coalition emerges in the Knesset.

The pending indictment against Netanyahu accuses him of taking bribes and interfering with the media for positive coverage of himself. Denying the accusations, he said in a speech televised to the nation Thursday that the indictment will “fall apart” and “was rushed to manipulate the elections.”

Warren followed with a link to a post describing her foreign policy goals of opposing “right-wing demagogues.”

She has criticized Israel’s policies toward Palestinians. Warren voted in favor of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and skipped Netanyahu’s controversial March 2015 speech to Congress opposing the agreement.

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