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July 6, 2015 / 19 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Uri Ariel’

The Day Jews Prayed in a Minyan on the Temple Mount

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

The issue of whether or not to allow Jews to pray on the Temple Mount is bound to come up for heated discussion before the elections March 17, but a rarely shown photograph proves that Jews once managed to pray there with a minyan, the minimum of 10 men needed for public prayer.

Jewish Home Knesset Member Uri Ariel and Likud MK Moshe Feiglin have been the most prominent legislators insisting that Israel change the “status quo” and allow Jews to pray at the holy site.

The official status quo, as reported here several weeks ago, has been replaced by a new status quo in which Jews still are not allowed to pray on the Temple Mount but also are restricted in their visits, even without praying.

The police implemented the new and unofficial status quo by limiting the number of Jews at the site and often closing it to Jews for reasons of “security,” meaning they don’t want to deal with Muslim rioters.

The 1995 peace treaty between Israel and Jordan not only does not specifically prohibit prayer by non-Muslims but also leaves it open as a possibility.

Paragraph 3 of the treaty states:

The Parties will act together to promote interfaith relations among the three monotheistic religions, with the aim of working towards religious understanding, moral commitment, freedom of religious worship, and tolerance and peace.

Regardless, the government policy not long after the Six-Day War in 1967 was to ban Jews form praying there. However, visiting was common.

Amos A., now in his 60s, told The Jewish Press that his father took him to all of the holy sites where Jordan had barred Jews. ”We went to the Patriarchs Cave in Hevron, Rachel’s Tomb at Bethlehem and the Temple Mount. No one said a word.”

He added that he and his father did not pray on the Temple Mount.

At that time, the Chief Rabbinate ruled that it is forbidden for Jews even to visit the Temple Mount, because of all kinds of issues of impurity and prohibitions of any Jew to walk on the ruins over the area where the High Priest entered only once a year, on Yom Kippur.

Very few rabbis were willing to question the opinion of the Rabbinate at the time, but that has changed in recent years. There now is an increasing number of prominent national religious rabbis who permit walking in certain areas of the holy site. Some also permit praying on condition of immersion in a ritual bath beforehand

Around 1980, give or take year, a group of 10 Jewish men, some posing as tourists, formed a minyan and prayed on the Temple Mount, as seen in the photograph above.

Yisrael Medad, a resident of Samaria, a former activist and now a blogger whose writing also appears on The Jewish Press, was one of the 10 men who formed a minyan.

The prayer service took place between 1979 and 1981, as he recalls. The picture shows nine men, with Medad on the far right. The 10th men was the photographer.

“It was one of the very, very few times that Jews have prayed on the Temple Mount,” Medad told The Jewish Press. “The group sneaked in and was able to pray until a Muslim guard was getting very upset and told us to stop. We motioned to him to wait because we were in the middle of the Amidah prayer,” the silent prayer in which interruptions are not allowed.

Medad said the guard “may have simply thought we were just looking around and not praying, but when he realized what was happening, he called the police, who hauled the men away.”

Update: Bayit Yehudi Finally Has the Education Ministry – and Turns it Down

Thursday, December 25th, 2014

UPDATE: In a very unexpected move, the Bayit Yehudi party has turned down the Ministry of Education portfolio, as well as the Welfare ministry. The party said it was inappropriate to take over these ministerial position for such a short period of time.


Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett is slated to take over the Education Ministry, and another party official will take over the Welfare Ministry, Yediot Acharonot reported Thursday.

Bayit Yehudi, or its predecessor, the Mafdal party, hasn’t held the Education Minister’s portfolio since 1999, when Meretz took it over. Historically, the Ministry of Education has always been considered the flagship ministry for the religious-Zionist party.

After 15 years in the desert, even 3 short months of water looks good.

Both Education and Welfare ministries were held by Yesh Atid Knesset Members, who quit after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu fired their party’s leader Yair Lapid and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, prompting new elections.

Bennett, who is Minister of Economy, has not officially responded to Netanyahu’s offer, which also includes giving the Jewish Home party the Welfare ministry. It probably will beheaded by either MK Uri Orbach or Housing Minister Uri Ariel.

Yesterday, Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud) received the Ministry of Health.

Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) has been approved to receive the position of Deputy Minister of Science and Information. Hotovely is already the Deputy Minister of Transportation and Road Safety.

Ofir Akunis received responsibility for Environmental Quality as a deputy minister.

Netanyahu appointed the lawyer Ofir Nimrod to oversea the Ministry of Finance.

Uri Ariel Promises to Lower Housing Costs

Thursday, December 25th, 2014

Minister of Building and Construction Uri Ariel (Bayit Yehudi) said that he plans to lower the costs of buying an apartment, according to an article in the Israeli economic paper, Calcalist.

Ariel said that currently it takes an average of 140 monthly salaries to buy a home. He plans to lower that down to 85.

Jewish Home Unity Overcomes the ’Yesha Faction’

Sunday, December 21st, 2014

The “Tekuma” faction, headed by Housing Minister Uri Ariel, decided Saturday night to remain in the Jewish Home party and not join forces with Eli Yishai’s new party or run separately in a move that saves the right-wing from another weak if not useless party based on Judea and Samaria.

Ariel, whose integrity and intellectual honesty often place him in contradiction with the art of compromise in politics, has been upset with the Jewish Home party and its chairman Naftali Bennett because of the ostensibly democratic system of primaries, which is susceptible to wheeling and dealing even more  than a party’s central committee decision to decide who will be candidates.

Ariel last week met with Eli Yishai to discuss the chances of running on Yishai’s new party, following his leaving Shas.

Ariel left the decision up it his rabbinical advisers, who were split. The Tekuma Central Committee decided Saturday night to make the smartest decision and remain with the Jewish Home party.

A split would have been disastrous both for Tekuma and for the Jewish Home party.

The decision also leaves the “Yesha” rabbis and their followers weaker than ever, another blessing for a right-wing faction that has been hampered by decades with the mentality that a Jewish presence in the Judea and Samaria and that national religious yeshivas are the only issues that are important for Israel. They have tried to make Judea and Samaria the most important region in Israel and have tried to establish Beit El, dominated by prominent national religious rabbis, as the capital of Yesha.

The establishment of the Jewish Home party, which incorporated the Tekuma faction and the old-guard National Religious Party (“Mafdal”) was a political revolution because it finally made Yesha, the acronym, for what once was known as the Council of Jewish Communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, a part of the country and not apart from the country.

The Yesha platform of “Greater Israel” in practice was concerned only with Judea and Samaria and yeshivas and not with the rest of the country. It operated on the principle “if you are for Yesha, or you are against the country.”

Bennett, who is religious but lives in metropolitan Tel Aviv, changed that. He also brought in a secular MK, who, horror of horrors to some rabbis, was a woman. Her name is Ayelet Shaked, and her presence helped the party win 12 seats in the Knesset. All polls show the party will win at least 16 as of today.

If Tekuma had split, it would have taken seats away from the Jew Home but also might have made it itself extinct, wasting tens of thousands of votes.

Joining with Yishai’s party became problematic because his rabbinical adviser decided that a woman’s contribution to the country is cooking in the kitchen and not making trouble by being a Knesset Member.

That was a big problem for Ariel, whose Tekuma colleague MK Orit Struk was anxious to bolt the Jewish Home and follow Tekuma.

Ariel, too well-rooted in the kibbutz movement to ostracize women, would not have accepted keeping Struk out of the new party. If he had set up a new party, it is questionable if he and Struk could have garnered the minimum number of votes needed to enter the Knesset.

The inability of his rabbis to take a unified stand on the future of Tekuma shows indicates how much the “Yesha bloc” no longer is in charge.

Their correct rulings of Jewish law that Judea and Samaria are part of Israel, and that it is a mitzvah to live there, only enlarged the black image in the eyes of Israelis that all settlers are religious and robots to rabbis.

Election Tidbits: Michael Oren, Rami Levi, Jewish Home and Shas

Monday, December 15th, 2014

Rabbis and Shas political leaders Monday morning failed in a last-ditch attempt so stop former party leader MK Eli Yishai from leaving Shas and setting up his own party, possibly with the support of the Jewish Home’s Tekuma faction, headed by Housing Minster Uri Ariel.

Chances to make peace between Yishai and Shas chairman Aryeh Deri were rated as very low, but there is more optimism in the Jewish Home party. However, Ariel gained an advantage with the announcement that a member of his faction, MK Yoni Chetboun, will not run for re-lection on the Jewish Home slate.

Party member and Tekuma colleague MK Orit Struk has said she will follow Ariel if he forms a new party or joins with Yishai. With Chetboun and Struk, Ariel will have the minimum of number of Jewish Home MKs needed to take along with them millions of shekels for funding their campaign.

Suspense still surrounds Moshe Kahlon’s new Kulanu party. He is courting Michael Oren, former Israeli Ambassador to the United States, who said two months ago he would not enter politics. If he does, he will have proven his credential to be a politician by not keeping his word.

Kahlon has scotched rumors that supermarket mogul Rami Levi will join his party, whose banner will be social justice.

Rami Levi supermarkets are known for having the lowest prices in the country but he also is known for fighting attempts to raise the minimum wage, which he pays to thousands of his workers.

 

 

 

Shas to Split Up but How about the Jewish Home?

Saturday, December 13th, 2014

It is all but official that Aryeh Deri, chairman of the Shas Sephardic Haredi party, is getting rid of Eli Yishai, one of the most respectable and intellectually honest Haredi politicians whose presence ruins Shas’ tradition of selling out to the highest bidder.

An announcement is expected Sunday or Monday.

As reported here Thursday, Deri and Yishai called off a meeting to make peace after Deri insulted Yishai with a demand that he deposit a liter of resignation just in case Deri decides his menace is working against the party.

Deri tried to calm Yishai by offering him the number two slot on the Shas party list of candidates. Yishai was not about to accept the prize while handing over a letter to pave the way for his dismissal.

Yishai also has been talking with Jewish Home party Housing Minister Uri Ariel about signing for a new party.

Sources close to the issue told The Jewish Press that it is far from being a “done deal” and that there is a chance that Ariel can patch up his differences with Jewish Home party chairman Naftali Bennett.

Ariel, whose honest to his  ideology often leads him to make the wrong turn politically, has demanded that Bennett reserve several spots for his Tekuma faction.

The Jewish Home party has been the most successful of all Knesset factions in the current government,. It has rid itself of the hardline image of the old National Religious party that closed its doors to secular nationalists and carved into stone an image of considering Judea and Samaria the capital of Israel.

If Ariel cuts the cord, he will cost the Jewish Home party some Knesset seats but he, too, will pay a heavy price by being fingered, rightly or wrongly, or making the “Jewish Home” a contradictory word. As Minister of Housing, he has played a major role in promoting new building for Jews in eastern Jerusalem, much to the dismay of the Obama administration.

Bennett has been too successful to please Ariel’s old-guard national religious ideology, and Ariel has complained that Bennett has not fulfilled promises made to him and his Tekuma faction.

Ariel’s contacts with Yishai have served only to deepen the fissure between him and Bennett.

Ariel admits that he differs with Bennett on religion and the extent of maintaining a Jewish presence in all of Judea and Samaria.

Ariel is very principled. He can be trusted not to sell out for votes or power, but his red lines are too rigid and too narrow in the politics of compromise.

Which is better? A compromised but effective Jewish Home or two separate nationalist parties?

Bennett and Uri Ariel Start Peace Process for Jewish Home party

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

Jewish Home party chairman Naftali Bennett and Housing Minister Uri Ariel met on Wednesday to work together in the election campaign after a stormy meeting earlier in the week that left signs of a split in the party.

Ariel demanded that the Jewish Home party slate reserve “secure” places on the list of candidates for his Tekuma faction, a request Bennett rejected, and it appeared the two were ready to part company.

Jewish Home party Knesset Member Ayelet Shaked explained to the media on Tuesday that the blow-up was simply part of “negotiations.”

Both Ariel and Bennett know that splitting up would be disastrous for the Jewish Home, whose name often bellies its meaning.

It appears that common sense and political survival will overcome egos and that Bennett and Ariel will continue their personal peace process. They will do so without any help from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who actually would be happy to help them separate forever and disappear from the political map.

 

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/bennett-and-uri-ariel-start-peace-process-for-jewish-home-party/2014/12/03/

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