Netanyahu's coalition threatened by haredi IDF draft bill again

“If Yair Lapid doesn't support the bill, it shows Lapid doesn't care if the haredim don't serve.”

By
December 23, 2018 10:34
2 minute read.
Haredi men protest outside the draft office in Jerusalem on November 28.

Haredi men protest outside the draft office in Jerusalem on November 28.. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

The controversial haredi (ultra-Orthodox) IDF draft bill that has threatened Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition multiple times resurfaced as a potential election-causing problem on Sunday.

Coalition chairman David Amsalem (Likud) announced Thursday that he intended to pass the bill, which was drafted by the Defense Ministry according to its needs. He said that rather than make changes demanded by the haredi Agudat Yisrael party, he would instead pass it with two parties from the opposition, Yesh Atid and Yisrael Beytenu, who have said they would vote for it if no changes are made.

Amsalem is set to convene a committee he chairs to advance the bill on Tuesday. He reportedly gave Agudat Yisrael an ultimatum to agree to pass the bill by then, in a move that could lead to the departure from the coalition of the three-MK Agudat Yisrael, or perhaps the entire United Torah Judaism faction of six MKs.

Sources in UTJ expressed outrage at Amsalem, who they said did not inform them he was convening the committee and backtracked from previous agreements about changes that would be made in the bill. They threatened to boycott Tuesday's meeting.

Amsalem said in Sunday's Likud ministerial meeting that he was undaunted by the haredi threats, and would convene the committee even if they boycott it.

Netanyahu’s coalition currently has a razor-thin 61-59 MK majority. If any party leaves by the January 15 deadline of the Supreme Court to pass the bill, elections would likely be initiated that would take place between April and June.

In an interview with Army Radio on Sunday morning, Amsalem dared Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid to go back on his promise to support the bill.   

“If Lapid doesnt support the bill, it shows Lapid doesn't care if the haredim don't serve,” Amsalem said.

Yesh Atid said in response that their only demand is that the bill not be changed and that Netanyahu would not compensate the haredim through back-door deals.

“We understand from Amsalem’s panicking that it would be very hard for Netanyahu [to not do that], because surrendering [to the haredim] is his faith,” a Yesh Atid spokesman said.

"It's not that we want the elections.We are supposed to pass the law on January 15. We hope that [Avigdor] Liberman and Lapid will vote for the bill," Culture Minister Miri Regev said about the bill.



Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

July 22, 2019
Perry: U.S. is worried about Chinese intelligence-gathering, not investments

By HERB KEINON, SONIA EPSTEIN

Cookie Settings