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October 23, 2014 / 29 Tishri, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Bayit Yehudi’

Israel Corners Itself

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

I’ve been reading Harvard University literature professor Ruth Wisse’s new book, No Joke: Making Jewish Humor. In her chapter on Israeli humor, Professor Wisse discusses the comedy trio HaGashash HaChiver (The Pale Trackers) and writes about a 1981 post-election skit of theirs:

“The three then launch into a musical number that interprets avodah, the national ethic of labor, as ovdim aleynu, ‘They’re Working Us Over,’ in which each stanza spoofs the promises made by politicians when running for office…The song’s refrain [was], ‘They’re working us over…and we never learn…”

That refrain remains valid in both claims.

In response to a recent blog about the 104 terrorist releases, a Bayit Yehudi voter from Efrat comments, “It helps show the world the corner they’ve painted us into with this prisoner release. It shows the world their shame.”

This is not the language of vigorous, sovereign citizenship—what Israel’s national anthem calls an am chofshi b’artzenu (free people in our land). This is the language of evasion, feebleness, and dependency, confirming those who describe Israel as an American protectorate.

Addressing similar claims by Bayit Yehudi MK Ayelet Shaked, an excellent blogger from Jerusalem remarks:

“The last time I checked, [U.S. Secretary of State] Kerry does not work for Israel and does not represent us. Shaked’s party leader, Naftali Bennett, her Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, and Shaked herself do represent us. If Israel is making admittedly stupid moves like releasing terrorist murderers—especially when we get nothing in return—maybe we need to be looking at our own leadership and not at the Americans.”

Compare these essentially “America made us do it” claims with the recent observance of Tisha B’Av and associated lamentations about European Jews during the First Crusade in the 11th century. Those ancestors had neither an army nor a state as they faced demonic hordes seeking to destroy Judaism.

Yet despite such physically superior aggressors, Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik zt”l noted about the many Jews who chose death rather than apostasy, regarding the lamentation Hacharishu Mimeni Va’adabera (“Be quiet, allow me to speak…”): “The enemies had a simple demand: all the Jew had to do was kiss the cross. The Jews could have saved their lives, but they would not agree to become apostates.”

Now consider the State of Israel in 2013, which has one of the strongest militaries in world history and a Yom Ha’atzmaut. How perverse is the claim that this superpower releases murderers of its citizens due to being “painted into a corner”?

The painted into a corner mentality always means rationalizing and mitigating injustice, the terrorist releases being the latest catastrophic example. Before that, it was blame Obama and the EU when the government froze construction in Yehuda and Shomron.

Or blame John Kerry and Catherine Ashton when Hamas attacks cities like Sderot with what amounts to impunity.

Or blame their predecessors when Israeli soldiers expelled 8,600 Jews from Gush Katif.

Do anything except reflect upon one’s own society and the regime it has produced. As Rabbi Yehuda Balsam commented this month in a related context, “If you’re not so happy with your leadership, perhaps it’s worthwhile to take a look in the mirror.” (See 5:00 here.)

The awful truth is that Israel corners itself and shames itself. The awful truth is that Israel invites foreign contempt because it shows contempt for itself.

“When you have no self-respect, you cannot expect anybody else will respect you,” Rabbi David Bar-Hayim of Machon Shilo has noted. Specific to the religious Zionist sector—of which Bayit Yehudi is the latest political incarnation—Rabbi Bar-Hayim observes:

“One of their characteristics is a tremendous naiveté regarding the authorities, the powers that be. They’re always trying to read into their actions more positive motivations than truly exist. They’re always willing to overlook evils done by these people.” (See 34:50 here.)

To paraphrase the The Pale Trackers in 1981: Some people get worked over, and they never learn.

An Ambushed Bennett Shoots Back and Scores

Sunday, January 6th, 2013

During the Q&A session of an election panel discussion at the Ono Academic College, Naftali Bennett, head of the Bayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home) party, was ambushed by the head of the college’s Student Union, who demanded that Bennett sign a statement that he [Bennett] would not refuse orders to expel Jews from their homes.

Bennett had set off a storm when he answered on Nissim Mishal’s show that he would be personally incapable of following an order to uproot a Jew, or an Arab, from their home. Following that statement, and the subsequent attacks from the Likud party, Bennett’s party spiked upwards in the polls.

At first Bennett tried to sidestep the ambush a number of times, including answering that the whole question is hypothetical.

But holding the paper in hand, which he demanded Bennett sign, the Student Union head refused to back down, at which point Bennett got up and said, “I will not be pressured or threatened.”

Bennett walked out of the panel, but not before taking one final parting shot when he announced, “Every single Israeli party must sign a statement that they won’t expel Jews from their homes.”

And upon hearing that, the audience broke out in loud applause.

Can we say “Kol HaKavod”?

Bennett Questions If Bibi is Planning Another Expulsion (+ Videos)

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Following harsh criticism from both the Likud and the Left, Naftali Bennett, head of the Bayit Hayehudi party, went on offensive against the attacks on his statements regarding his personal inability to expel Jews from their homes in the case of another “Disengagement”.

Bennett said that he is not calling on soldiers to refuse orders, which he also clearly said in his original remarks.

He said that, as a soldier, he personally would be incapable of fulfilling an order to uproot a Jewish settlement or an Arab village.

On Channel 10, Bennett then went on the offensive against the Likud and Netanyahu.

Bennett said that the fact that the question even arises on election eve as to whether or not the Likud would have soldiers, once again, expel Jews from their homes, says it all. And the Likud would do it, he claims.

In response to Netanyahu’s statement, “Whoever refuses orders to remove settlements will not be in my government,” Bennett responded, “Mr. Prime Minister, is the reason you said that because you are planning on removing settlements in your next administration?”

A number of Likud ministers and MKs have attacked Bennett, but with the exception of Moshe Feiglin, none have yet said they would not expel Jews if given the order to do so.

The Likud sees HaBayit HaYehudi as their biggest threat in the upcoming elections.

It’s easy to see why.

 

The original interview:

Saturday night’s followup:

Moshe Feiglin on Bennett and refusing orders:

Party Registration Closed, and the Pollsters are Busy

Friday, December 7th, 2012

Registration for running in the upcoming Knesset elections officially closed on Thursday, and for the first time we actually know who is running – and where.

34 parties are running.

Among those who elected to not run are Ehud Barak’s Atzmaut (Independence) party, the Green party, and the Eretz Yisrael Shelanu party.

The first poll to be released after registration was closed was run by Dialog.

The results of their poll is as follows:

Likud-Beytenu: 37
Labor: 20
Bayit Yehudi: 11
Shas: 10
Hatnua: 9
Yesh Atid: 7
Yahudut HaTorah: 6
Raam-Tal: 5
Meretz: 4
Am Shalem: 3
Hadash: 3
Balad: 3
Kadima: 2

The Dialog poll did not give any seats to Ben-Ari and Eldad’s Otzma L’Yisrael party.

The Manu Geva poll, on the other hand, as reported on Channel 2, gave Otmza L’Yisrael 3 seats.

Latest Israel Election Polls

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

The following poll result were reported on the Knesset TV Channel, after the Cease Fire announcement:

  • Likud: 33
  • Labor: 24
  • Bayit Yehudi:  13
  • Yesh Atid:  11
  • Shas: 10
  • Yahadut HaTorah:  6
  • Meretz:  6
  • Otzma LYisrael:  4 (Michael Ben-Ari and Aryeh Eldad)
  • Am Shalem: 3
  • Balad:  3

Atzmaut (Ehud Barak), and Kadima (Shaul Mofaz) don’t pass the minimum level of votes to get any seats.

Likud has dropped since before the Gaza operation, when they were between 40-43 seats.

MK Uri Ariel: ‘Today begins the Knitted-Kipa Revolution’

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Chairman of the Knesset State Comptroller’s Committee MK Uri Ariel welcomes the new Bayit Yehudi list for Knesset: “I congratulate the contenders and those who were chosen in the Bayit Yehudi party. Now we are geared toward unifying the ranks and returning the National Orthodox camp to its historic influential position on the political map. Today begins the Knitted-Kipa Revolution.”

National Union Reaction to New “Israel Strength” Party

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

The National Union (HaIchud HaLeumi)’s reaction to Eldad and Ben-Ari’s announcement: “The Israeli political left-wing is elated at the news that our partners are splitting away and setting up a new party, because it means that tens of thousands of right-wing votes will be wasted, and that we have returned to the type of politics that brought about the Oslo Accords. We have always promoted unity in the National and National-Orthodox camps and we are sorry that our partners, who oppose running together with the Bayit Yehudi in the upcoming elections, have not learned the lessons of the past, which brought us the ‘victims of peace’. ”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/national-union-reaction-to-new-israel-strength-party/2012/11/13/

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