The disconnect between both sides’ interpretations of that crucial aspect of their call doesn’t necessarily mean that one or the other is lying, but just that they might have interpreted parts of their discussion a bit differently, which is natural and actually works to both of their benefit.
The Mainstream Media (MSM) is going wild after Israeli Prime Minister Bennett’s latest call with Russian President Putin. He claimed that the Russian leader apologized for Foreign Minister Lavrov’s anti-fascist remark a few days back where he controversially used the example of Hitler’s alleged Jewish ancestry to make the legitimate point that one’s ethno-religious identity at birth doesn’t predetermine their political views later in life. Tel Aviv threw a temper tantrum in response, with its officials – including Bennett himself but also Foreign Minister Lapid – describing Russia’s top diplomat as an unforgiveable antisemite who’s absolving the Nazis of the Holocaust and politicizing that fascist genocide.
Curiously enough, however, the Kremlin’s readout of their call makes no mention of President Putin’s purported apology. The closest that it comes to this recent scandal concerns these two leaders discussing their countries’ shared historical memory of World War II, including “the Red Army’s decisive contribution to the Victory over Nazism.” The disconnect between both sides’ interpretations of that crucial aspect of their call doesn’t necessarily mean that one or the other is lying, but just that they might have interpreted parts of their discussion a bit differently, which is natural and actually works to both of their benefit.
To explain, these leaders certainly touched upon the recent scandal provoked by Israel’s overreaction to Lavrov’s legitimately anti-fascist and factually based point, but it’s unlikely that President Putin apologized. He probably just clarified the intention behind his top diplomat’s remark and reiterated that nobody in his government is antisemitic since they truly treasure the contribution that Jews have had on the development of their civilization-state’s cosmopolitan society over the centuries. For reasons of mutual political convenience, however, they might have agreed that it’s best for Bennett to publicly interpret this as an apology in order for them to move past this scandal as soon as possible.
The Kremlin, meanwhile, would remain ambiguous about this by neither confirming nor denying the Israeli leader’s statement but pointing interested observers to Russia’s official readout which makes no mention of a so-called “apology” but does indeed report that they discussed their countries’ shared historical memory of World War II. While the MSM has an interest in misportraying this as though “madman” Putin was finally humbled by one of his international peers – and none other than the West’s allied Israeli one at that — in order to present the Russian leader as weak and embarrassed, these slings and arrows aren’t anything new and don’t significantly add to the West’s anti-Russian infowar.
To the contrary, they actually contradict it to a large extent. That’s because the West’s “politically correct” narrative is that the leader of Israel, who represents Holocaust survivors and their descendants, is among the most powerful authorities in the world when it comes to determining whether someone is really an antisemite or not. By claiming that he accepted President Putin’s alleged apology for Lavrov’s remark, which was in reality always anti-fascist and thus not even remotely antisemitic like it was falsely twisted by Israeli officials to be after they misunderstood it, Bennett absolved Russia’s top diplomat of the previous claims that he and Lapid made about him allegedly being an antisemite.
The MSM can no longer “credibly” describe Lavrov or President Putin as antisemites or fascists since the standards of their society’s own “political correctness” are that the Israeli Prime Minister who represents Holocaust survivors and their descendants is among the top authorities in the world when it comes to this sensitive issue. In fact, far from being a soft power setback for Russia, this latest development is actually a soft power setback for Israel since it decided to bury the hatchet with Moscow despite its leading officials launching an unprovoked infowar campaign against their counterpart’s top diplomat alleging that he’s an antisemite after misunderstanding his anti-fascist and philo-Semitic point.
Israel likely decided to end the toxic spat with Russia that it unilaterally provoked because it felt very uncomfortable after Moscow shared facts contradicting Tel Aviv’s claims that no Jew had any responsibility whatsoever for the Holocaust, which is a sacred issue for that country and upon which it heavily relies to justify its scandalous creation after World War II. Keenly aware that its Prime Minister is regarded by the West as among the world’s most powerful authorities on this subject, Israel probably decided that it’s better to absolve Lavrov of the antisemitism that Bennett and Lapid accused him of in order to blow the dog whistle implying that Tel Aviv wants the MSM to “memory hole” this scandal.
The outcome is that Israel’s soft power was negatively impacted to such a degree by this totally unnecessary scandal that it artificially manufactured after misunderstanding Lavrov’s anti-fascist and philo-Semitic point that it’s willing to walk back the toxic attacks that its officials made against him in a desperate attempt to put an end to this episode. President Putin probably expected that the MSM will describe him as weak and embarrassed in response but pragmatically realized that this is an acceptable compromise in exchange for moving past this scandal so that Russia and Israel can return to responsibly managing their differences with a view towards preventing any further worsening of their ties.