The senior haredi political leadership hit out angrily against both Yesh Atid
leader Yair Lapid and Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett over the weekend in
response to the ever-greater likelihood that Shas and United Torah Judaism will
be excluded from the forthcoming government.
Joint Shas leader Eli Yishai
issued a statement on Facebook accusing Lapid of trying to “exclude the haredi
parties from government and from Israeli society,” while charging Bennett with
“sacrificing the future of the settlements on the alter of hatred for
“The exclusion of haredim has become a holy value for him,”
Taking aim at Bayit Yehudi, the Shas leader said that “the
hatred of Lapid toward us is stronger than the love of Bennett for the different
parts of the Land of Israel and concern for the settlements.”
wasn’t the case, he would have known that the price of his friendship with Lapid
will be expensive for the settlements of Judea and Samaria,” Yishai
He accused Bennett of betraying the haredim, when they had
opposed any further territorial withdrawals from the West Bank and who he said
“understand that security comes before peace.”
“Anyone who wants to
advance social changes needs to do it through understanding and respect, not
through passing laws and decisions without those who will bear the changes are
when they are not part of the game and not part of the decision-making process,”
Senior United Torah Judaism MK Ya’acov Litzman also
weighed in against Bayit Yehudi, saying that “the boycott of an entire community
is despicable and revolting behavior that is a mark of shame on the leadership
of the Bayit Yehudi leadership.”
Meir Porush, another UTJ MK, said that
“the disengagement of Bayit Yehudi from the Torah world strengthens [Prime
Minister Binyamin] Netanyahu to take steps, together with Yesh Atid, to enact a
disengagement from Judea and Samaria.
“I didn’t believe that people from
Bayit Yehudi, whom we worked with to strengthen the Land of Israel, would
descend to such a dangerous and harmful process against the haredim and the
Torah world,” Porush said.
MK Moshe Gafni (UTJ) hit out at Lapid,
accusing him of deceit.
“It’s easy to say ‘We don’t hate haredim’ and
then in practice do everything to harm the way of life, faith, outlook and
compass of the haredi community,” said Gafni.
He told Lapid to “study
some history and see that UTJ has been in opposition more than in government,”
but noted that his party’s animus was directed more at Bayit Yehudi than Yesh
“Our claims are against his partners who suffer from a permanent
boycott and are now joining Lapid’s boycott against the haredi community,” Gafni
said of the national- religious party.
Bennett, in a lengthy explanation
of the course of coalition negotiations in a Facebook post on Saturday night,
said that he was not excluding either Shas or UTJ, and that the only party to
boycott others had been the Likud, when it has boycotted his party.
noted that Shas had waged “a campaign of deligitimization against the national
religious [sector],” and referenced Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s
recent comment that his party was “the house of non-Jews.”
on to explain that his party had expected to be a natural partner and the first
party to join the coalition after the election, but that a Likud decision to
boycott Bayit Yehudi had forced it to act and form the pact with Yesh Atid not
to enter the coalition without each other.