The former head of World Bnei Akiva has come out with strong criticism against Rabbi Haim Druckman, perhaps the most senior and influential rabbi in the religious-Zionist community, for having lent his support to claims that the indictments against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are “a coup.”
Daniel Goldman, who headed World Bnei Akiva from 2000 to 2015, said that recent comments by Druckman had put him at odds with the traditional respect held by the religious-Zionist community for the institutions of the state and the rule of law.
On Sunday, Druckman said that the indictment against Netanyahu amounted to a “field trial” and an “injustice,” and called on the public to attend a scheduled demonstration in support of Netanyahu where activists are expected to employ Netanyahu’s message that the indictments are indeed an attempted coup.
“The idea that because Netanyahu has suggested there is a some kind of putsch makes it a fact, and that the most senior educator in the religious-Zionist community said we should go to this demonstration undermines everything that we are taught about the rule of law and respect for it,” Goldman told The Jerusalem Post. “Rabbi Druckman is signing on to the notion that the police, the state attorney and the attorney-general are somehow in cahoots in a putsch and a coup d’etat. This is absurd at the very minimum, and damaging because of his status in the religious-Zionist community.”
Goldman said that Druckman’s status as the most senior rabbinical figure in the religious-Zionist community, and his position as titular head of the Bnei Akiva network of schools, meant that his comments against the institutions of the state were particularly grave.
“You can be in favor of Netanyahu without asserting that there is a political coup,” he explained. “I don’t have a problem that he is on different political side from me, but I do have problem with his attack on the rule of law.”