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Photo by: TOVAH LAZAROFF
'Refusal of orders is a sign of political breakdown'
By TOVAH LAZAROFF
08/01/2013
Bayit Yehudi's Orit Struck says party will ensure that soldiers won't be faced with the prospect of evacuating W. Bank settlements.
 
A vote for Bayit Yehudi is a vote against the evacuation of West Bank settlements, politician Orit Struck told a large auditorium of male yeshiva high school pupils on Monday afternoon.

They had gathered in Yeshivat HaShomron’s auditorium in the Karnei Shomron settlement to listen to Struck (Bayit Yehudi) MK Michael Ben-Ari (Strong Israel) Rabbi Shai Peron (Yesh Atid) and Minister Yuli Edelstein (Likud) explain their parties’ positions.

As Struck spoke, Ben-Ari challenged her to clarify her party’s position on whether a soldier should refuse orders to evacuate Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria.

It should never get to that point, Struck answered.

The 2005 withdrawal from Gaza was a breakdown of the political system, she said.“Parliamentarians betrayed the promises they made to the public when they were chosen for the Knesset,” she said.“They chose to sacrifice the land of Israel.”

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As a result, soldiers were faced with the question of evacuating settlements.

“This is not supposed to happen, and we will ensure that the political system won’t break down and soldiers won’t have to deal with this question,” Struck said.

“We will be there for you on this point first,” she said to resounding applause.

Edelstein defended his party’s record with regard to West Bank settlements.

He promised the students that he would never make use of a phrase, “Things that you see from here, you do not see from there.” Former prime minister Ariel Sharon often used that phrase to defend the Gaza withdrawal, which occurred under his premiership.

It is one of the most terrible sentences ever uttered in Israel’s history, Edelstein said.“It is one of the most un-democratic sentences I have heard in my life.”

Applause greeted his words.

As it died down, English teacher Aliza Kravat, one of the few women in the room, yelled out, “Bibi says it all the time.”

“This is the reason we left the Likud,” she said.

Kravat later told The Jerusalem Post that she had been an active party member, but left because she felt betrayed by Sharon.

When Edelstein spoke, she said, it struck a nerve and reminded her of her anger against the Likud, even though she likes Edelstein.

Peron reminded the audience that social justice issues were important, particularly in Judaism. Adherence to social justice, should be treated as seriously as one honors other laws such as the Sabbath, Peron said.

Struck noted that the elections had been advanced because of the budget, and that the next government would be asked to make cuts.

“We won’t allow the disabled and the weak [members of society] to be harmed,” she said.
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