Min. Ariel: We'd Like to See Hareidim Replace Livni
Jewish Home's Minister Uri Ariel fired back Friday at Justice Minister Tzipi Livni (Hatnua), who was quoted as saying she would like to see hareidi parties replace the Jewish Home in the coalition, in order to make possible far-reaching concessions as part of a “peace” deal.
"In the month of Adar, when the Purim spirit is upon us,” said Ariel, “the Justice Minister, too, may dress up in costume and play at let's pretend. I and my friends would also like to see the hareidim in the government alongside the Jewish Home. She can figure out for herself, at the expense of which party this would come.”
Livni reportedly recently told Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that she would be willing to “wear a shtreimel for peace,” and suggested that he bring hareidi parties into the government, on the assumption that they would support the kind of concessions she envisions Israel making in "peace talks" with the Palestinian Authority.
A shtreimel is a fur hat worn by many hareidi men from the hassidic stream.
Hareidi parties are generally perceived as being much less nationalistic than the religious-Zionist Jewish Home, and significant parts of their electorates are at least nominally anti-Zionist. Their opposition to diplomatic plans that involve ceding land is therefore less predictable than nationalist parties like Jewish Home, which opposes such withdrawals categorically.