Left-wing reporter blasted for casting new MK as ‘religious radical’

“The Noam party focuses on education and fighting the progressive movement in Israel which focuses on destroying our Jewish identity and values,” wrote a Jewish educator in response to the characterization of Maoz as a religious extremist.

By World Israel News Staff

A prominent Israeli reporter who writes for the English-language Axios outlet and Hebrew-language Walla News faced heavy criticism on Sunday evening after characterizing an MK from the Noam party as an extremist.

Barak Ravid posted a photo of Noam party chair Avi Maoz shaking hands with Prime Minister-elect Benjamin Netanyahu to his 220,000 Twitter followers, shortly after the two men reached an agreement to partner together for a new right-wing government.

“The person Netanyahu is shaking hands with is Avi Maoz, the leader of Noam, a radical religious party that focuses on opposing LGBTQ & women’s rights,” Ravid wrote as the caption to the photo.

“They signed a coalition deal today. Maoz will be a deputy minister at the PM office in charge of a new Jewish identity department.”

Roni Sassover, a Jewish educator who once was a candidate on former Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s now-defunct Yamina party list, immediately slammed Ravid for his “outright lie” about Maoz.

“The Noam party does NOT focus on opposing LGBTQ & women’s rights,” she wrote on her Twitter account. “The Noam party focuses on education and fighting the progressive movement in Israel which focuses on destroying our Jewish identity and values.”

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Sassover then posted a video of Maoz speaking in the Knesset about radical left-wing gender ideology in Israeli public schools. He said that children were being educated about the existence of multiple genders without the knowledge of their parents, and that sleeping arrangementsin overnight school trips were being made based on self-identification rather thanon biological sex.

“Release our children from this [indoctrination]’” Sassover wrote as part of her post.

Ariel Kahana, a correspondent for Israel Hayom, noted that Ravid omitted Maoz’s well-respected history as an advocate for world Jewry, who partnered to free Soviet-era “Prisoners of Zion” who were imprisoned for Zionism and attempting to immigrate to Israel.

“The person Netanyahu is shaking hands with is Avi Maoz, a leader of the ‘Let My People Go’ who worked tirelessly to let Jews in [the] USSR, including Nathan Sharansky, go free to Israel,” Kahana wrote.

“Maoz, who supports conservative families, was also a senior official in Israeli governments,” he added.

Left-leaning media in Israel and abroad have raised the alarm about the anti-progressive agenda of the Religious Zionism party, of which Noam is a part.

However, openly gay Likud MK Amir Ohana, who has two children with his partner and is likely to be appointed foreign minister, downplayed “media hysteria” about a threat to the gay community in a lengthy Facebook post.

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Ohana questioned why left-leaning activists and media outlets did not express the same level of concern over Bennett’s partnership with the Islamist Ra’am party, whose MKs have expressed their disapproval of homosexuality and characterization of the orientation as a mental illness.