Daily Israel Report

Secular MK Fears Israel Becoming a Religious State

Knesset Member Daniel Ben-Simon said at a Sabbath “cultural event” that “a quiet religious revolution” is taking place in Israel.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 7/17/2011, 9:48 AM / Last Update: 7/17/2011, 10:33 AM

Flash 90

Knesset Member Daniel Ben-Simon, a former journalist for the left-wing Haaretz newspaper, said at a Sabbath “cultural event” that “a quiet revolution” by the religious community is taking place in Israel.

"I have a feeling the national religious establishment is preparing a long-term plan,” he said in Rehovot. “The settlers and their fanatical ideology are more determined than ever. A quiet revolution is taking place in Israel, without an army and without violence and through legislation in the Knesset and actions. These people aim to take over the country.”

Ben-Simon, who left the Labor party to form his own faction, charged that as soon as anyone ”touches” a rabbi with criticism, “his followers” appeal to the High Court.

He admitted that the secular community has not been able to create a national identity, leaving the religious community an opportunity to become more dominant “even though “it is not the majority.”

Ironically, Ben-Simon spoke while religious Jews were hearing the weekly Torah reading that describes the “covenant of peace” to the priest Pinchas by HaShem for putting an end to the anti-religious rebellion by many Jews in the desert.