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Father of ‘hate wedding’ bride blames Shin Bet conspiracy

Lenny Goldberg alleges ‘bad taste’ footage of revelers was orchestrated by security agents; says he doesn’t care about Duma victims

Screenshot from a video showing extremist Israeli Jewish wedding-goers celebrating the killing of the Dawabsha family. (screen capture: Channel 10)
Screenshot from a video showing extremist Israeli Jewish wedding-goers celebrating the killing of the Dawabsha family. (screen capture: Channel 10)

The father of the bride whose wedding guests were filmed celebrating the murder of a Palestinian family has said he has no sympathy for the victims of Jewish attacks, and has claimed the entire affair at the wedding was a conspiracy orchestrated by the Shin Bet internal security service.

Lenny Goldberg, whose daughter Roni’s “hate wedding” in December was featured in a video clip, showing dozens of far-right guests celebrating the Duma firebombing attack with guns, knives and a mock Molotov cocktail, made the claims in a letter to the right-wing news site Israel National News.

“Not only don’t I care about Duma, neither does the Left or the Shin Bet,” wrote Goldberg, explaining that the murder of the Dawabsha family in July was “just a good excuse for them to harass and torture” young far-right activists that “they so despise for the Judaism that they represent.”

The video, aired by Channel 10, also showed revelers holding and stabbing a photo of 18-month-old Ali Dawabsha, who was burned to death in the July 31 firebombing at the family home in the West Bank village of Duma. His parents, Riham and Saad Dawabsha, succumbed to their injuries in the aftermath of the attack.

Goldberg wrote that it was very likely the entire photo-stabbing scene was orchestrated by the Shin Bet in order to deflect widespread right-wing claims that suspects in the Duma case were tortured by the security services.

Lenny Goldberg (Facebook)
Lenny Goldberg (Facebook)

“I really don’t know who brought those pictures anyway. Knowing the hilltop youth, I can tell you that photographing pictures and mounting them on signs is not their specialty,” he said, using the colloquial name for young, hard-line settler youth. “If you look closely, everyone dancing is wearing white shirts, but the guys holding the signs are wearing jackets and their faces are blurred.

“And even if those holding the signs are not Shin Bet agents themselves, it’s no problem to give the signs to some overzealous youth and let him run with it. We know for sure that the Shin Bet had a heavy presence at the wedding.”

While Goldberg, a follower of the late far-right rabbi Meir Kahane, said he thought the photo incident was “in bad taste,” he stressed that “I’m much more concerned about the Jews who are being knifed in Israel every single day — not pictures of Jews, but real live ones.”

Three people arrested over the wedding video were released to house arrest on Thursday, after the police decided not to appeal the move. The courts had ordered that the three — groom Yakir Ashbel, far-right activist Daniel Pinner and an unnamed minor — be sent home on Wednesday, but delayed their releases in order to grant the police time to appeal. The police later said they would not object to the court order, and the trio were sent home on Thursday.

The suspects were arrested on Tuesday, and questioned for alleged incitement and illegal handling of firearms.

File: Yakir Ashbel (center), the groom from what came to be known as the 'hate wedding' is brought to the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court on December 31, 2015 after being arrested on suspicion of hate and racist incitement at his wedding celebration (Flash90)
Yakir Ashbel (center), the groom of what came to be known as the ‘hate wedding,’ is taken to the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court on December 31, 2015, after being arrested on suspicion of hate and racist incitement at his wedding celebration. (Flash90, File)
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