Senior rabbis of Religious Zionism, led by Rabbi Dov Lior, Rabbi Haim Druckman and Rabbi Chaim Steiner, on Monday signed a statement in which they respond to the hostile criticism made by Rav Ovadia Yosef, the most respected posek (rabbinic jurists) of our time and the spiritual leader of the Shas party, Srugim reported.
On Saturday night, Rav Ovadia attacked the Jewish Home party saying it was not the home of Jews but of goyim, and that religious Jews must not vote for this party.
The attack by Rav Ovadia followed a Srugim expose which stirred political and religious circles with the revelation that Ayelet Shaked, number 5 on the Jewish Home list, supports civil marriages for Jews who are unweddable according to the standards of Israel’s chief rabbinate.
In their Communiqué, the Religious Zionist rabbis avoid direct criticism of Rav Ovadia Yosef, stating only that they heard “regretfully the comments made in error about a large community of Israeli supporters of Jewish Home.”
The Rabbis noted that the supporters of the Jewish Home are “loyal to the Torah and the commandments and many have martyred themselves for the sake of Torah and for settling the Land of Israel.”
The rabbis further write that they “recognize and appreciate Jewish scholars who support Jewish Home.” They also state that Jewish Home has carved on its banner its dedication on behalf of the Torah of Israel in all areas of public life.
In addition to Rabbis Lior, Druckman and Steiner, the document was also signed by Rabbi Isser Klonsky, Rabbi Gideon Perl, Rabbi David Chai HaCohen, Rabbi Eliakim Levanon, Rabbi Michael Hershkowitz and Rabbi Shimon Cohen.