Growing Anger Fuels Protesters Outside Israeli PM Netanyahu’s Residence

Growing Anger Fuels Protesters Outside Israeli PM Netanyahu’s Residence

Protesters Gather Outside Israeli Prime Minister’s Residence in Anger Over Gaza Attack

Police had to intervene as demonstrators gathered outside the residence of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday. The protest, fueled by widespread anger over the failures that led to last month’s deadly attack by Hamas gunmen on communities around the Gaza Strip, saw hundreds of people waving Israeli flags and chanting “Jail now!” as they pushed through police barriers in Jerusalem.

The demonstration coincided with a poll that revealed more than three-quarters of Israelis believe Netanyahu should resign, highlighting the growing public fury directed towards their political and security leaders. Despite the mounting pressure, Netanyahu has yet to accept personal responsibility for the failures that allowed the surprise assault. On October 7, hundreds of Hamas gunmen stormed southern Israel, resulting in the deaths of over 1,400 people and the hostage-taking of at least 240 individuals.

As the initial shock of the attack has faded, public anger has intensified. Many families of the hostages held in Gaza have expressed bitter criticism of the government’s response and are demanding the safe return of their loved ones. In Tel Aviv, thousands of people demonstrated by waving flags, displaying photographs of the captives, and brandishing posters with slogans like “Release the hostages now at all costs.”

Following the attack, Israel launched a vigorous air and ground offensive in Gaza, causing a death toll of over 9,000 people, according to health authorities in the Hamas-controlled area. Large portions of the enclave have been reduced to rubble as a result.

Even prior to the conflict, Netanyahu had been a divisive figure, facing corruption charges that he vehemently denies. He also pushed through a plan to limit the powers of the judiciary, prompting hundreds of thousands to take to the streets in protest.

A recent poll conducted for Israel’s Channel 13 Television revealed that 76% of Israelis believe Netanyahu, who is now serving his sixth term as prime minister, should step down. Additionally, 64% of respondents indicated that the country should hold an election immediately after the war. When asked who is most to blame for the attack, 44% of Israelis pointed fingers at Netanyahu, while 33% blamed the military chief of staff and senior IDF officials, and 5% held the Defense Minister responsible.

The ongoing protests and the overwhelming public sentiment calling for Netanyahu’s resignation reflect the deep discontent among Israelis towards their leaders amidst the fallout from the Gaza attack.

(Reporting by Emily Rose; Editing by Ros Russell)