Beit El Rabbi: No Rabbinic Apology Due Over Army Base Incident

Rav Zalman Melamed says violence at base was wrong but there is no need for rabbis to apologize over something they did not do.

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Gil Ronen,

Rabbi Zalman Melamed
Rabbi Zalman Melamed
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Rav Zalman Baruch Melamed, Rabbi of Beit El, said in his weekly conversation with students that while the violence at the Ephraim army base last week was wrong, the rush by some religious figures to apologize for it is also a mistake, leading people to feel the rabbis are culpable for the acts of the rioters .

"Someone did a bad thing and there were some, including rabbis, who began to denounce the acts," he said.

"It is true that we think protest should be carried out in a passive manner, and not through acts that hurt others and that are wrong and unhelpful," he said. "But the media is not interested in the act of that particular young man or young men, but in the path we all tread as a group. They want to prove that we are walking down the wrong path, that the whole settlement enterprise is wrong."

"Those who denounced the actions assisted in strengthening the arguments of those who think we are not legitimate," he added. "Our response should have been to maintain silence until the wave of condemnation passes, or to tell them: 'you will not succeed; we will continue to settle the Land of Israel. I do not need to apologize for something I did not do.'"