Jewish Agency Chairman Warns Of Ramifications Of Cabinet Kosel Decision

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Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky is one of the audible voice of prominence opposing the cabinet decision to freeze the Kosel status. The decision brings an abrupt end to plans to develop an egalitarian prayer area near the Kosel, at Robinson’s Arch. Sharansky explained that while he believes PM Netanyahu cares about all “streams of Judaism”, he feels he is weak when it comes to standing up to pressure from within the coalition.

Members of Federations who were present in Israel when the cabinet decision was announced signaled their disgust, some announcing they would cut donations while others signaling they do not plan to come again. Sharansky called on them not to withdraw donations nonetheless.

Sharansky told reporters that in essence, there is nothing special in this case for anytime there is a decision pertaining to the Kosel, one donor cancels his pledge while another adds to his. He feels however, that in this case, it is more than money but it sends a message to Reform and Conservative that they are unwanted and that the Kosel is not theirs. It is even worse in this case because the decision to establish the egalitarian prayer area was made, and now, the cabinet is reversing its own decision.

Sharansky adds that a growing number of rabbis in the Diaspora avoid mentioning “Israel” in their weekly sermons and this latest decision is not going to help the situation. The Jewish Agency leader adds that he is however confident that most Israeli do not agree with the decision any more than he does.

Sharansky concluded he is aware that PM Netanyahu favors the egalitarian area and he does not hide his personal feelings, but he is unable to implement it with the current coalition makeup. Hence, he explains that since he cannot implement it, he prevented it from being canceled by freezing it instead.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)


9 COMMENTS

  1. Natan Sharansky would be serving Jewish People better if he still remained in GULAG. Since his release he brought so much trouble upon Jewish nation especially when he was minister of absorption by bringing hundreds of thousands of Russian goym to Eretx Ysroel.

  2. Don’t you people understand that there is a Supreme Court as well? Do you know why people were even considering the egalitarian section of the Kotel? It’s because the Women of the Wall got a Supreme Court order allowing them to do their lunacy! The third section is basically saying keep your stupid ceremonies over there and don’t bother us on our side. Not accepting the egalitarian section opens up the door for a toeiva marriage in the men’s section of the Kotel. Think of it not as building a platform for the Reform. Think of it as a quarantine so they don’t spill into our area.

    MoisheInGolus, watch what you say. Natan Sharansky has done a lot of great things for Jews and Israel. You can disagree with a political position without demonizing a truly good person. The non Jewish Russians who came to Israel were coming in before he was absorption minister and he had nothing to do with it.

  3. A BUNCH OF SORE LOOSES! !
    When they get what they like they Proclaim you need to respect democracy, but when it doesn’t go their way they cry like a baby!
    GET A LIFE!

  4. There can be no further compromise with the Hellenists who want to destroy the Torah and the Jewish people.Reform is dying ,its leaders don’t reflect the positions of the majority of Jews in the U.S. or the world.It’s time Sharansky steps down if he can’t understand what Judaism is about.

  5. RE: Natan Sharansky has done a lot of great things for Jews and Israel ? Name one.
    I can name you quite few bad things he did including his signature on Way Accord Agreement that brought more bloodshed and suffering to Yiden. We should stop giving honor to people who do not deserve it.

  6. Mr Bennett

    How dare you say a “slap in the face” to inflame Jews. They are our beloved brothers and sisters and we will not allow you nor them to drill a hole in tour ship so it sinks, has v shalom.
    Tell them they are always welcome to pray if they are appropriately dressed, with no tallis or tefillin, nor trousers, nor short tight skirts nor bare arms nor low necklines, nor flashy colors. No Torah scroll in the womens’ section.
    Women and men are separated by a mechitza.

  7. Religious Jews should have heeded the words of Rabbi Teitelbaum and resisted visiting the site over the past 50 years. In future, when the “haredi” parties fall out of coalition and place is made available for the non-orthodox to utilise the Kosel site, there will either be a massive public protest by “Haredim” which will succeed in retaining the status quo and paint Orthodox Jews as being intolerant of other strands of Judaism, or Reform services will transpire at our “holiest” site. Better to have abandoned the kosel in protest of Zionism in the first place. Giving credence to heretical Zionism at the historic site is not worse than allowing mixed Reform prayer there.