Rabbi Benny Lau responds to Ben Gvir

Rabbi's lawyer sends letter to Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir rejecting demand for compensation and apology.

Mordechai Sones ,

Rabbi Benny Lau
Rabbi Benny Lau
Hezki Baruch

Rabbi Benny Lau's attorney Eyal Rosovsky sent a letter to Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir this evening in response to the demand for compensation and an apology for the rabbi's remarks regarding the Otzma Yehudit party.

In the letter, the attorney rejects Ben Gvir's claims and tries to clarify that his client's words did not constitute slander, but that his Sabbath sermon remarks were a legitimate expression of opinion.

Click here to read the full response letter in Hebrew.

"Rabbi Lau explained that the 'Otzma Yehudit' party is a new reincarnation of the Kach party and its leaders see themselves as students of Rabbi Kahane, and Rabbi Lau mentioned that the Kach party was a racist right-wing movement with fascist characteristics. This emerges from explicit positions expressed by Rabbi Kahane and his followers, both orally and in writing, over the years," claims attorney Rosovsky.

According to him, "Rabbi Lau sought to point in full force to the goals of the party whose students are candidates to enter the Israeli legislature. For this purpose, Rabbi Lau reviewed positions expressed by Kahane and his followers, including calling for the expulsion of Arab citizens from Israel and the promotion of racist legislation against them."

He adds that "Rabbi Lau did not call anyone 'Nazi'. Rabbi Lau expressed harsh criticism of racist positions being allowed in the Knesset, especially through the Jewish Home Party - the historical National Religious Party - that was flesh of its flesh engraved with the values of Torah and respect for man as a human being.

"Rabbi Lau believes his duty as a community rabbi and Torah scholar, who teaches values and educates, is to defend fundamental values ​​and stand against the racist and dark opinions that every moral person must shun. One must fight for this goal, declared Rabbi Lau. His remarks within the framework of his sermon are part of permitted, legitimate, and even important and necessary public discourse.

"The words of Rabbi Lau do not contain lashon hora (slander) because the words - which are true and have great public interest in their publication - were uttered by Rabbi Lau in good faith, among other things in the framework of his public, moral, and social duty towards his community and the general public," the attorney closed his letter.