Yeshua: Netanyahu’s nickname at Walla was ‘Kim Jong Un’

Judah Ari Gross is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.

Former Walla CEO Ilan Yeshua says he and the former editor in chief of the news outlet, as well as other senior staff, developed a number of nicknames and codewords to discuss Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the skewed coverage that the website gave to him.

Yeshua says Netanyahu was sometimes called “Kim Jong Un,” North Korea’s dictator, around the office, while Sara Netanyahu was called “Ri Sol-ju,” Kim’s wife.

In addition, the former editor of Walla, Yinon Magal, would tell Yeshua that he was “delivering a kebab” when a positive news story was due to be published, while a “kebab with paprika” was the code for a negative story.

Yeshua says his employers Shaul and Iris Elovitch also had their own nicknames for various political figures.

According to the former Walla CEO, they called former finance minister Moshe Kahlon, who was born to Libyan immigrants, as “the Arab,” “the smiler” and “smiley,” while Naftali Bennett was referred to as “the naughty religious boy.” The Elovitches referred to Netanyahu as “my friend from Jerusalem.”