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      Activists to Bayit Yehudi: Time to Wake Up

      Activists with Regavim call on the Bayit Yehudi party to “wake up,” break its ties to Yesh Atid.
      First Publish: 8/22/2013, 1:15 AM

      Lapid and Bennett
      Lapid and Bennett
      Flash 90

      Activists Yehuda Eliyahu and Betzalel Smotrich have issued a public call to the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party to break its ties to Yesh Atid.

      The two activists, who head the Regavim NGO, published a letter to Bayit Yehudi saying, “It’s time to wake up, the concept of an agreement with Yesh Atid has totally collapsed.”

      From the letter:


      Dear friends, we are lost. The time has come to wake up, and better late than never.

      The partnership with Lapid was never something natural. We abandoned our natural partners and friends for someone different – in beliefs, in worldview, and in behavior. We thought, apparently, that if we were smart, we would get something good about it, and maybe even ‘convert’ Lapid and bring him to our side.

      When our gut fears grew, we told ourselves that we had no choice other than this strange process… The time has come to be brave, to look reality in the eye, to accept the situation and to look for an escape route.

      Let’s start with the big things: the rationale for a deal with Lapid was based on an agreement that Yesh Atid would support our opposition to preconditions to diplomatic talks, and in exchange, we would agree to hold such talks… The government that we are part of first freed murderers with blood on their hands as a precondition to talks, and is now in the midst of a dangerous diplomatic process.

      The very existence of the diplomatic process is already doing tremendous damage in terms of public awareness, and is likely to end with the establishment of a Palestinian state, even in temporary borders, in giving up parts of our homeland and even uprooting Israeli communities.

      More big things: we dealt mortal damage to the Torah world, both the hareidi and the Zionist. The yeshiva budgets were cut, and for now, Lapid is ignoring the quiet agreements on the matter… We’re not saying our MKs aren’t trying, but the reality is that it isn’t working. The Finance Minister is spitting on us, and we aren’t responding.

      The state budget that passed, with the cut to child payments, demonstrates warped priorities that we should not have agreed to. This is a new set of priorities that pushes aside family values… Lapid’s disparaging remarks that whoever chooses to have children needs to take responsibility for providing for them are disgusting comments that demonstrate a disturbing set of values… And we are quiet.

      Even when it comes to the “small” things, for the time being we have not accomplished anything. The bill to sell the Negev to the Bedouin for a pot of stew passed a first reading at our hands. We didn’t bring a Zionist Chief Rabbinate. The abuse of “settlers” continues… The Levy Report is already covered with such thick dust that even we don’t remember what’s written in it. Administrative distancing orders are handed out like we’re in a banana republic.

      We’re afraid, and we’re not alone. The time has come for us to stand up for ourselves and to promote the agenda that we believe in. That’s why we got 12 mandates, that’s why we’re in government.