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Wife of Israel’s interior minister tweets, and deletes, racist joke about President Obama

silvan-shalom-barack-obamaSilvan Shalom, a senior figure in the right-wing Likud party, sits in front of a photograph of himself with then US presidential candidate Barack Obama during an interview with Reuters in Ramat Gan, near Tel Aviv, March 1, 2009

Judy Mozes, an Israeli talk-show host and the wife of the country’s interior minister, tweeted a racist joke about President Barack Obama on Sunday morning.

She then quickly deleted it and apologized.

Mozes, who is married to Silvan Shalom, a Likud party member and currently vice prime minister and head of the Ministry of the Interior, tweeted a joke she said she heard that compared Obama’s skin color to a weak cup of coffee.

She has nearly 75,000 followers.

aaMozes, 57, then deleted the tweet and posted an apology.


Yair Rosenberg, a writer and commenter on Israeli affairs, offered context for Mozes’ remarks, saying that she has become known for “her weird outbursts on many subjects.” Her comments have also plagued her husband’s political career, Rosenberg added.

The joke comes at a fraught time in the US-Israeli relationship, as differences on an array of policy and security issues have frequently set the Obama administration and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ruling Likud government at odds.

At times these differences have led Israeli leaders to stake out positions on American politics, as when Netanyahu appeared to voice support for Mitt Romney ahead of the 2012 presidential election.


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