Their behavior has drawn a cascade of condemnations from Israel's president on down.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opened his weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday with a call for fans to reject racism.
"The last thing we want, and which we absolutely reject is violence, racism and boycotts. These are unacceptable to us. I say this in regards to a team that I have supported for years, Beitar Jerusalem," Netanyahu said. "Lately, we have seen displays of extremism that we find unacceptable. These must be uprooted from the public sphere and, of course, from the world of sports."
Beitar Jerusalem, which has won six league championships and seven cup titles in its 77-year history, is a powerhouse in Israeli soccer and has a legendary following that includes several Israeli prime ministers.
The team has historically been strongly aligned with Israel's nationalist right wing and its name, Beitar, comes from the Zionist youth movement that is linked to the ruling Likud Party.
The team and its fans have since been a steady source of support for Likud politics and a string of politicians have served as team chairman. Prime ministers with Likud roots — from Ariel Sharon to Ehud Olmert to Netanyahu — have called themselves fans and made pilgrimages to the club's Teddy Stadium.
Olmert recently said he would stop attending games because of the fans' racism. On Sunday, he joined other top Israeli officials, former players and notable fans of Beitar in signing a petition against racism that was published in Israel's main newspapers.
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