Middle East Monitor / July 26, 2023
Israeli Transport Minister Miri Regev has asked Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara to open an investigation into former Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Forum 555 for inciting a coup d’état, the Jewish News Syndicate reported yesterday.
Citing a video circulating on social media, Regev claimed it “shows without any shadow of a doubt that beginning in March 2020, former officials began concocting a plan for a coup d’état and civil disobedience, with detailed and careful planning.”
Referring to the massive pro-democracy protests, the right-wing minister added: “We have been seeing the attempt to implement it in recent days.”
According to Regev, the plan included “falsely presenting a danger to democracy with funding and investments totaling millions of shekels, leading to the point of no return—a civil war—as [Barak] begs them [opponents of judicial reform] to create clashes with the police.”
This comes days after Public Diplomacy Minister, Galit Distel Atbaryan, Tweeted on Friday her claim that Barak planned to bring down the government.
Atbaryan referred to an interview with Barak from 2020 to Forum 555, a group of retired Israel Air Force pilots and navigators, accusing Barak of deliberately inflaming the civilian population, creating a false representation of a danger to democracy and bankrolling protests, including purchasing flags.
In the interview, Barak detailed his “master plan” for creating civil unrest in a future coalition, she said.
Barak in a Twitter post published on Friday claimed that the video interview being shared was incomplete, and said it hadn’t revealed any new information.
She noted that a former pilot and a founder of Forum 555 told Channel 14 this week that “indeed, the coup d’état has been planned for a number of years, together with Ehud Barak, and it is not connected to any political and/or legislative event.”
Regev added: “We cannot ignore these things at a time when we see the plan concocted years ago becoming reality and chaos reigning in the streets. Therefore, I demand that a criminal investigation against Ehud Barak and members of the 555 organization be immediately opened, and that they be brought to justice for the forbidden acts that they have committed.”