Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses awful massacre in Orlando, FL

The reason that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s response to the Orlando massacre was met with an unprecedented response on social media for a statement made by a politician was his “tone of voice,” wrote a prominent columnist in the Financial Times on Monday.

Sam Leith, author of You Talkin’ to Me?: Rhetoric from Aristotle to Obama, said this in answer to the question he himself posed: “How do you, as a politician, a public speaker or the spokesperson for an organization, respond to tragedy?”

What one is reaching for, he wrote in “The Art of Persuasion,” is “[d]ignity, restraint, a suspension of hostilities… but what a tiger to ride: to be dignified and restrained in a climate of grief; to be bipartisan and gracious in a climate of rage. Naturally, orators seek to channel strong crowd emotions. Here, they are seeking in some sense to calm them down.”

Netanyahu’s statement was similar in content – he placed blame on radical Islam – it “went down differently.”

“It is not what you say, it is how you say it,” concluded Leith.


Watch Netanyahu’s full statement below:



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