Politicians from Left, Right slam Plesner report

Yechimovich calls the committee a "political puppet show"; Danon accuses Plesner of of aiming to please Arab voters.

Labor party chairwoman Shelly Yacimovich 370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Labor party chairwoman Shelly Yacimovich 370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Coalition and opposition parties slammed the Keshev Committee’s findings, following committee chairman and Kadima MK Yohanan Plesner’s presentation on Wednesday.
Opposition leader Shelly Yechimovich said that the committee was tricking the public and was part of a “political puppet show that must end immediately.”
“A press conference on a flight to Mars would be worth as much,” she quipped on her Facebook page.
According to Yechimovich, Plesner had good intentions and some of his recommendations are worthy, but they are not legitimate due to the “cynical connection between Kadima and Likud, which occurred only for reasons of political survival.”
The Labor leader added that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had no intention of seriously looking for a solution to inequality in the burden of IDF and national service and was busy with political tricks.
“We must stop this theater of the absurd and go to elections as soon as possible, which is what was supposed to happen before Netanyahu and Mofaz’s political trick,” she concluded.
Water and Energy Minister Uzi Landau said that the committee’s choice not to deal with Arab enlistment brings “unequal equality.”
“It is strange that the enlistment of haredim [the ultra-Orthodox], who make up 8 percent [of those who don’t serve], is obvious, while national service by Arabs, who make up half of those who don’t serve, is seen as illegitimate,” Landau stated.
The Yisrael Beytenu minister also pointed out that the number of secular Jews who do not serve in the IDF is significantly higher than the number of haredim.
“Everyone should learn these numbers,” Landau said. “Yisrael Beytenu will oppose any partial recommendations and all attempts to soften the blow, as Plesner and his friends did.”
Landau called for the Knesset not to miss a “historic opportunity” to bring all Israeli citizens into “the army of the people.”
MK Danny Danon (Likud) said that the Keshev Committee marked Kadima’s end, because rather than seek to end inequality, Plesner was more concerned with pleasing his party’s Arab voters.
“The people of Israel are sick of seeing Arabs sit back while a small percentage of the population carries the whole burden,” Danon stated. “All Israeli Arabs must do national service.”
Meretz leader Zehava Gal-On called the report “Kadima’s swan song,” saying that it was meant to “strengthen their pointless partnership with Netanyahu.”
“Instead of proposing a bill to bring equality, the report is meant to purify discrimination,” she stated. “Mofaz is a ‘paper tiger’ who creates fake crises and threats to leave the coalition to keep Kadima alive.”
Yesh Atid founder Yair Lapid accused Plesner of giving “discounts” to different sectors in society, such as postponing haredi enlistment to age 23 and thereby preventing equality.
“This is an impractical outline that will prevent many from enlisting,” he said. “Expanding the number of those who serve and requiring it of all 18-yearolds is necessary in order to stop Israeli society from breaking apart.”
According to Lapid, Netanyahu is responsible for creating equality, but instead he is “doing everything to run away from making a decision and trying to fool the Israeli public with tricks.”