Dr. Anat Roth
Dr. Anat RothPR photo

Jewish Home Chairman Naftali Bennett confirmed Tuesday morning that he intends to place Dr. Anat Roth in the 14th spot in the Jewish Home's Knesset list. Bennett noted Roth's move from left wing to right wing views symbolizes Israelis' awakening from pipe dreams of "peace."

Roth's performance in the Jewish Home primaries was lukewarm, and she reached the 22nd spot, which is not considered a realistic one. Polls currently give the party 15 or 16 MKs.

Roth used to be an activist with the leftist Peace Now organization and an advisor to former Labor leaders Ehud Barak and Amram Mitzna, but changed her views years ago. She is currently the Director of Megalim, the Higher Institute for Jerusalem Studies at Ir David and leads a religious lifestyle.

She was also director of the Centers for Deepening Jewish Identity.

Bennett said Roth has “a big Jewish soul.”

"The nation of Israel is sobering up,” he added on Facebook. “The fashion used to be to retreat. To run away. To apologize. The Disengagement was the fault line. The nation understood that this doesn't work anymore. That we have a land and that we did not reach it by accident. That there are no 'security considerations,' 'ideological considerations,' and 'painful concessions.' It's all the same. Either we believe in our right here, or the world will despise us.

"From the amazing houses that we evacuated in the Disengagement, missiles were fired at residents of central Israel, just in the last few months. And the nation is sobering up and joining the Jewish Home,” he added.

Roth, he said, “is a brave researcher and a truth-seeking academician, who goes against the flow without apologizing.”

"After a long period of being connected to the Labor party and working for its senior members, she chose to stop working on a doctoral thesis about the party and research the expulsion from Gush Katif instead. What she learned led her to sober up, without fear, and to rethink everything she had believed in until then.”

"Anat will fight in the Knesset so that no more Jews are expelled from their homes. The Nation of Israel is moving, daily, from the apology camp to its Jewish Home.”

'Reality has set in'

According to Dr. Roth, "The Labor movement and the Israeli left have stocks in the creation of Israel and the Zionist enterprise, but the facts have changed and reality has set in, and the Labor party cannot handle them. The last decade shows us that the desire for peace was and remains a thing of the Israeli side only, and that the processes in the Palestinian Authority and around us show that an Israeli withdrawal from land will lead to the establishment of a terrorist state.”

"Jewish Home is the only party that is correctly reading the map and the processes that take place around us, and is not selling illusions to the public. It connects between secular and religious, and not just talks about unity, but works to strengthen our common ground, our connection to Israel and the Israeli and Jewish and Zionist identity among the people,” said Dr. Roth.

"These are the issues with which I’ve dealt with in the last decade, and I hope I can continue to work for them in the Knesset, with the excellent Knesset members of the Jewish Home," she added.

Making Jewish Home more popular

Bennett is currently using his powers as party head to make final changes in the Jewish Home list, in an effort to make it attractive to the widest possible base. The party constitution gives him the right to add one person of his choice for every five spots on the list. This means that people lower on the list move downward, except those whose places are reserved, like those of Tekuma members. 

He explained on Monday evening the reasoning behind his recruiting of former soccer legend Eli Ohana to the party.

Speaking to Arutz Sheva, Bennett said that he reached out to Ohana in order to attract more voters, resulting in a stronger Jewish Home after the elections.

Ohana became famous when he played for Betar Yerushalayim, a Likud bastion, and his recruitment is an effort to woo Likud voters, and the traditionalist Mizrachi population.

Roth may appeal more to former leftists, to people who are less strictly religious, and to female voters.