In his weekly address given this past Saturday night, Rabbi Meir Mazuz, the dean of the Kisei Rahamim yeshiva, attacked MK Bezalel Smotrich, head of the Religious Zionism party, for the decisions he made during negotiations with other parties when attempting to establish a right-wing government.
“Ironically, it was on the very anniversary of the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s passing that the government changed – and not for the better,” Rabbi Mazuz said. “I spoke with Smotrich at length and asked him: What do you think you’ll get better than this? And he answered that ‘We won’t enter a government together with Arabs.’ I told him, ‘Enter it, and you won’t need the Arabs.’ But he didn’t want to understand.”
Rabbi Mazuz cited the words of the Torah in Proverbs (19:8): “The person who is slack in his work is brother to the one who is actively destructive,” noting that, “The time will come when each person pays for his deeds. A person who acted for the sake of Heaven will receive his due reward; a person who only claimed to do so and his intention was actually evil deserves to be punished. There is no escaping this.”
Smotrich himself has rejected accusations that he was the one responsible for removing former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from power, writing last week that, “Our main argument is that whitewashing supporters of terrorism and turning them into legitimate partners in government will, ultimately, lead to the loss of power for the right wing in favor of the Left, for many, many years to come. In the long run, the Left is capable of giving the Arabs a lot more [than the Right] in return for their support, even to the extent of paying a heavy national price.
“The division between Right and Left in the State of Israel goes back a long way and is certainly not limited to the issue of settlements. Rather, the division between the national camp and the Left cuts to the very question of the Jewish identity of the state – whether it will be a Jewish and democratic state, or whether it becomes a secular, progressive ‘state of all its citizens.’
“The rise of the Left and the Arabs to power will bring about incredible destruction to the world of Torah and the Jewish identity of the State,” Smotrich concluded, “no less than it will bring for the Land of Israel, for Shabbat, for kashrut, the integrity of the family and the People, our culture, and so much more.”