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December 18, 2014 / 26 Kislev, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘Shas’

Shas Continues Petty Attacks Against Rav Amar for Control Over Sephardim

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

It was a first for Shas, when the spiritual leader of the Sephardic-Haredi party was chosen by the politicians, rather than the politicians being chosen by the spiritual leaders, Shas’s Council of Torah Sages.

Until now, Rav Ovadia Yosef ruled the Shas party with an iron fist and making all the major decisions, but since his death, and even a little before, the party has been effectively ruled by the Shas party chief, Aryeh Deri.

On the face of it, the current battle Shas is fighting is over who will be considered the spiritual heir of Rav Ovadia, and they hope by default, the spiritual leader of Israel’s Sephardic community.

It’s that last part which guarantees Shas votes for the Knesset.

On one side there is former Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar, an acknowledged Torah giant and until Aryeh Deri’s political coup, the heir-apparent of Rav Ovadia as spiritual leader of the Sephardic community. But to his political disadvantage (and to his credit), Rav Amar is not part of the Shas party’s inner circle.

On the other side is Aryeh Deri, who is empowering rabbis he believes are aligned with him politically, further entrenching his position as the party’s leader to whom everyone answers.

Kikar Shabbat, a Haredi news website controlled in part by a member of the Yosef family, has been reporting what they describe as the political fight between Rav Amar and members of the Yosef family. The latest is over which politician visited whom during Pesach and for the Mimouna.

For Shas, these political visits provide much needed legitimacy to their rabbis and their party, and are thus very important. It is just as important for them that political leaders don’t visit Rav Amar, as they see those visits as undermining the legitimacy of their politically chosen spiritual heirs.

Kikar Shabbat even discusses which official robes Rav Amar wears as former chief rabbi and how that is an attempt to undermine their spiritual leaders. And during the most heated period before Rav Ovadia’s death, Kikar Shabbat even stopped using the honorific titles they grant senior rabbis they approve of.

But the Kikar Shabbat article that really shows how petty the Shas blood-feud really is, is the babyish article that attempts to denigrate Rav Amar as contradicting his own halachic rulings, entitled, “In contradiction to his own past rulings, Rav Amar will light the bonfire after Shabbat”.

Previously, Rav Amar gave a ruling that on Lag B’Omer, the traditional bonfires should not be lit right after Shabbat when it falls out then, but instead, anytime throughout the next day. This is to avoid any possible desecration of the Shabbat.

This year Lag B’Omer falls out right after Shabbat.

Kikar Shabbat reports out that Rav Amar sent out invitations to his bonfire which will take place on Saturday night at the graveside of Rav Shimon Bar Yochai.

The Shas controlled website “innocently” asks, why is Rav Amar contradicting his own rulings, and running his bonfire on Saturday night.

Sources close to Rav Amar pointed out to Kikar Shabbat that Rav Amar is running the bonfire on Sunday morning at 3 AM, and that doesn’t contradict the previous ruling, which explicitly permits bonfires “any time throughout the next day,” which includes 3 AM Sunday morning.

Shas Party Appoints New Spiritual Leader

Friday, April 18th, 2014

The Shas political party, founded and run by the late Rav Ovadia Yosef, has a appointed a new spiritual leader, according to a Galei Tzahal report.

The rabbi chosen to replace Harav Ovadia and be the new president of the party’s Council of Torah Sages is Rabbi Shalom Cohen.

Aryeh Deri is the political leader of the party. Deri displaced Eli Yishai, who was interim leader for the years that Deri was in jail, and until he was allowed to return to politics.

Liberman Vetoes Haredim Participation in the Coalition

Friday, March 14th, 2014

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman reportedly vetoed the idea of bringing Haredim into the coalition government, according to senior Likud sources, as reported by Makor Rishon.

Now that the fight over the Haredi draft law is over, advisers to PM Netanyahu believe that it is time to bring the Haredim into the coalition, and if that upsets Yair Lapid to the point where he pulls his Yesh Atid party out – so be it.

But resistance came from an unexpected source.

According to Likud sources, Liberman said, “I won’t remain in the coalition, if that were the case,” referring to Haredim joining the government.

Liberman has been a staunch supporter of drafting Haredim.

In another example of the tensions between Liberman and the Haredi community, Liberman and Aryeh Deri (Shas), who were friends in the past, are apparently not friends anymore.

This past week Aryeh Deri said that he could see Yitzchak Herzog (Labor) replacing Netanyahu as Prime Minister.

Netanyahu’s people have begun an anti-Deri campaign as a result of that remark, reminding Shas supporters how Deri dragged their party to the far Left, a position which doesn’t represent the view of the majorty of Shas voters.

The outspoken Haredi MK Moshe Gafni (UTJ), who has called for the destruction of non-Haredi Hesder yeshivas, had angry words to say about PM Netanyahu, the Knesset, the government, Naftali Bennett, Avigdor Liberman, adding that he will “never forgive” Netanyahu or those that were involved in the Haredi draft bill, not even on Yom Kippur, according to a Makor Rishon report.

The funny thing about politics is that one should never say never.

Bennett’s Jewish Home and Labor Up in the Polls

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

A poll by the Knesset Channel released on Thursday confirms the trend of increased popularity for the Jewish Home party, headed by Naftali Bennett, and lesser support for Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party.

Unlike recent polls, strength in the Likud-Beiteinu party dropped a bit. Labor and Meretz gained backing at the expense of Yesh Atid, and the other parties drew more or less the same support as in recent polls.

If elections were held today, according to the new survey, Likud-Beiteinu would win 30 seats in the Knesset, one less than it has today. Labor, which recently elected Yitzchak Herzog to replace Shelly Yachimovich as its leader, would replace Yesh Lapid as the second largest party, with 19 Knesset Members.

Third in line is Jewish Home with 17 seats, five more than it holds today.

Yesh Atid would drop from its current 19 to only 12. Meretz, as in previous polls, would be the biggest winner in terms of percentage gains. The survey gives the left-wing party 12 seats, double its current strength.

Shas would drop to seven seats, the Ashkenazi Haredi United Torah Judaism would hold its own at seven, and Tzipi Livni’s party continues to be in the dumps, this time with four projected MKS. The remainder of the Knesset seats would be occupied by Arab parties.

Netanyahu Says His Son and Non-Jewish Girl only ‘Study Together’

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

The son of Benjamin Netanyahu simply is only “studying” with his non-Jewish Norwegian girlfriend and is not dating her, sources in the Prime Minister’s office told the Shas Haredi party.

Earlier this year, a picture of Yair and Sandra Leikanger, 25, who both study at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, showed them together, and he recently visited her in Norway.

Prime Minister Netanyahu now denies the earlier report that he told the Norwegian Prime Minister in Davos last week about the relationship, which was headlined in Norway’s newspapers.

Aryeh Deri, head of the Shas party, told an Israeli radio station after the initial report, “I know friends of mine who invest tens of millions and more, hundreds of millions to fight assimilation in the world. If God forbid it’s true, woe to us…. It is no longer a personal matter — it is a symbol of the Jewish people.”

Whether Prime Minister Netanyahu has carried out damage control or the couple really has nothing going on between putting theirs together to study, the shock waves are enough to convince Yair to find another study partner, or, if h really s dating Sandra, to start her on the road to an Orthodox version.

JTA contributed to this report.

Haredi Leaders Call Ruling for New Beit Shemesh Vote ‘Corrupt’

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

Haredi political leaders across the board called a court ruling for new elections in Beit Shemesh” corrupt,” “racist” and a sign of “dictatorship,” among other less than complimentary adjectives.

The court accepted a petition by Attorney General Yehudah Weinstein that documented corruption in the voting October 22 as ground for voiding the election results, which gave  incumbent Shas Mayor Moshe Abutbul a 956-vote victory over Jewish Home challenger Eli Cohen.

The real corruption is the court decision itself, according to Haredi Knesset Member Menachem Eliezer Moses of the United Torah Judaism party.

Not only was it corrupt to invalidate a proven corrupt election, it also was “racist,” he said. Any time a court rules against Haredim, it is “racist.” If it rules in favor of Haredim, it is proof of God’s will.

Shas Party chairman Aryeh Deri was much more polite and limited his disgust at the decision by stating that the judges surrendered to a “media campaign” to cancel a democratic decision. Perhaps he thinks corruption is democratic.

The booby prize for idiotic reactions goes to United Torah Judaism Knesset Member Yisrael Eichler, who stated that the decision “proves there is no difference between dictatorships in the Egyptian and Israeli judiciaries.”

He suggested that Israel’s secular court might declare Haredim illegal, just like the Egyptian courts ruled against Muslim Brotherhood, which now is an official terrorist organization.

He opened his mouth too wide by lumping  the Brotherhood, the mother of Hamas, with Haredim.

Lapid Stages Slight Comeback in Polls

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party would win 14 Knesset seats if elections were held today, compared with 11 in a poll in November, according to the Hebrew-language Walla! website.

The increased strength is attributed to recent bills on more rights for homosexuals that Yesh Atid has sponsored, although they not yet been passed into law. The results still show Lapid is far from returning to his present Knesset representation of 19 Knesset Members.

The poll gave the Jewish Home party 11 seats, one less than it now holds in the Knesset, while Shas would nine seats, two less than it now holds. Shas is holding its own better than expected since the recent death of the party founder and spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

Party chairman Aryeh Deri and his predecessor Eli Yishai are in in a power struggle that could divide the party.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/lapid-stages-slight-comeback-in-polls/2013/12/25/

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