The Ministry is headed by Sofa Landver, who belongs to the ultra-nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party led by Israel’s foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman.
Intended to cajole Israelis living in the United States to come home, critics say the ads smack of arrogance, ignorance and cultural disrespect of America. The Jewish Federations of North America called them insulting. Abraham H. Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, called the videos “heavy-handed, and even demeaning.”
On Friday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu aborted the campaign.
“We are very attentive to the sensitivities of the American Jewish community,” said Mark Regev, a spokesman for Mr. Netanyahu. “When we understood there was a problem, the prime minister immediately ordered the campaign to be suspended.”
In related news, Jewish women in the Britain and the US are being urged to send photographs of themselves holding signs saying “women should be seen and heard” in a campaign against efforts by the ultra-orthodox to remove female images from advertising billboards in Jerusalem.
Extremist ultra-orthodox groups in Israel have also demanded the segregation of women and men on public transport and separate hours, entrances or queues at supermarkets, post offices and medical centres.