President Obama’s conspicuous silence — followed by rote condemnation — about the murder of an American-Israeli teenager apparently at the hands of Palestinian terrorists brought a series of rebukes on social media.
Naftali Frankel, 16, who had dual Israeli-American citizenship, was one of three teenagers abducted June 13 on their way home from a school function.
The youths were the subject of a huge manhunt by Israeli authorities, but their bodies were found bound and buried in a shallow grave near Hebron in the West Bank. Members of the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas are being blamed for the killings.
Obama’s silence over Frankel’s fate during an appearance in the White House Rose Garden on Monday was notable. He’s used the same venue May 30 to publicly host the parents of another American citizen who had been capture by Islamic militants – Bob and Jami Bergdahl, parents of suspected Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl.
The president also hasn’t hesitated to thrust himself into other high-profile news events, such as the death of black teen Trayvon Martin at the hands of neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in Florida in 2011.
A State Department release quoting the president’s condemnation of the killing — and of course calling for restraint on all sides — didn’t quite match the president’s anguish at Martin’s death, or even his musings over whether a fictitious Obama Jr. would be allowed to play football.
Twitter users took note of the apparent double standard – and they weren’t charitable.
Obama: “If I had a son, he would have looked like Naftali Frenkel.” No, wait, Obama DID NOT say that. #missingteens #Israel #Hamas #tcot
— Larry Elder (@larryelder) June 30, 2014
Obama leaves no man behind, unless you’re a Jewish American killed by Hamas http://t.co/7sSaotPrfU
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) June 30, 2014
Conservative columnist and Twitchy.com founder Michelle Malkin took note of the silence.
Cue crickets chirping. RT @TwitchyTeam ‘Not one word:’ Obama silent on murder of American teen Naftali Frenkel http://t.co/kAqVs1VTzY
— Michelle Malkin (@michellemalkin) June 30, 2014
Actually, there was eventually a word, with this pro forma statement released by the State Department Monday.
“The US condemns in the strongest possible terms this senseless act of terror against innocent youth,” Obama statement in #Israeli teens.
— Matt Lee (@APDiploWriter) June 30, 2014
Here are some of the other Twitter comments Twitchy collected after Obama’s Rose Garden ceremony Monday.
#BringBackOurBoys Subhuman butchers of Hamas left 3 bodies in a shallow grave http://t.co/XYnJGewkYs One was an American Obama says Nothing
— DANEgerus (@DANEgerus) June 30, 2014
The quintessential Obama State Department: it urges “restraint” in response to the Hamas-backed murder of 3 Israeli teens. Not no. HELL NO.
— Ken Gardner (@kesgardner) June 30, 2014
#Obama during the #kidnappedteens is quite telling. With #Trayvon he was empathetic and said it could’ve been his son. With #naftali nada.
— Common Sense (@elliottau) June 30, 2014
Empty words are even worse than “nada.”
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