Rabbi Aharon Rakeffet at the meeting
Rabbi Aharon Rakeffet at the meetingReligious Zionism Party

On Wednesday morning Rabbi Aharon Rakeffet gave his full support to MK Bezalel Smotrich and the Religious Zionism Party, and called for people to encourage others to vote for the party as well.

“I am the happiest person alive to vote for Bezalel Smotrich and the Religious Zionism Party,” he said.

The party met with Rabbi Rakeffet, a world-renowned historian who was close to Rabbi J.B. Soloveitchik zts"l, in Rabbi Rakeffet’s office in Jerusalem. Also in attendence were Knesset candidate, former head of World Bnei Akiva, and Deputy Head of Mizrachi Ohad Tal; and Anglo coordinator for outreach and events for the Religious Zionism Party, Benjamin Sipzner.

Rabbi Rakefet was professor of Rabbinic Literature at Yeshiva University's Caroline and Joseph S. Gruss Institute in Jerusalem and taught for over 60 years. He spent four years studying under Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik and remained very close to him afterwards.

In the beginning of the meeting, Rabbi Rakeffet recounted that he was very hurt about how in Israel's last coalition government there was an attack on the Jewish character of the state. He placed his full trust and support behind the Religious Zionism Party and Bezalel Smotrich to defend the Jewish character of Israel while also promoting the economic and infrastructure needs of the State.

He put his confidence in the party to uphold the miracle that is the State of Israel, saying, “We made something from nothing here in Israel, and look at what we have done.”

Of the future of the State and the continuation of the miracle that is Israel, he said, “I am very proud to support this party and we have to be forthright, honest, and proud in what we have accomplished and what we have yet to do.” He also pointed to the religious community being in the army as the fulfillment of the prophecies and biggest mitzvah (Torah commandment) one can do.

Rabbi Rakeffet also emphasized that he has confidence the party will balance the values of Torah and democracy in the right way. He stated that the party is led by Torah-observant Jews and that they are representing the ideal way the State of Israel should be run.

When asked about people who don’t want to vote in the upcoming election, Rabbi Rakeffet said, “If you say you don’t want to go out and vote you are enhancing the power of the left.” He added, “I don’t believe any other party will stand firmly that when Judaism and democracy clash, Judaism comes first. I don't believe there is any other party to vote for, we have to vote for Torah-observant Jews.”

Concluding the meeting, the party and Rabbi Rakeffet agreed to continue to meet and develop their relationship as well continuing to strengthen the party’s relationship with the Israeli Anglo community and the Jewish community around the world.