Daily Israel Report

Gafni: We Still Embrace Religious Zionists

Hareidi MK says hareidi world will ‘embrace’ religious Zionists, but will give religious-Zionist MKs a hard time.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 4/3/2013, 5:59 AM

MK Moshe Gafni
MK Moshe Gafni
Israel news photo: Flash 90

The hareidi world still feels close to religious Zionists despite recent tension over the creation of the government, hareidi MK Moshe Gafni (Yahadut Hatorah) said Tuesday, speaking to Arutz Sheva at the Ramle Conference.

“The religious Zionist community’s cutting off from the hareidi community is a bad thing,” he said.

“I say to the religious Zionist community, which is a good community: we are here… We will continue to embrace you – but we will not make life easy for your representatives [in Knesset],” he said.

Gafni said the new government worries him. “I am worried about two things. First, the material side – the Finance Minister’s statements that there will be a serious impact to the middle class. I do not think many Members of Knesset will look out for this class,” he said.

“The second matter I am concerned about is the religious issue,” he continued. “Within a few days of the government’s creation, they started bringing gas on the Sabbath, Lapid is sending messages during the Seventh of Passover holiday. These are things that did not happen in the past. It is like he is mocking the values of the state as a Jewish state.”

Gafni also spoke of recent proposals to enlist most young hareidi men to the army. “We can say that as hareidi Jews, we are not going to change our way of life in any way,” he said. “We exist in the merit of Torah scholars… Of course it has to be done lovingly, it has to be explained, but we are not going to change.”