Chareidi Parties Shift Left to Save Yeshivos


Amid reports of an imminent deal with The Movement party of Tzipi Livni, with six seats, and Shaul Mofaz’s Kadima party with two seats, the chareidim appear willing to support the removal of yishuvim towards saving yeshivos, the daily Maariv reports.

It appears that a deal is imminent by which Tzipi Livni will serve as Minister of Justice and Shaul Mofaz as Minister of Strategic Affairs or Minister of Negev & Galil Development, bringing eight seats to Likud/Beitenu’s 31 seats. If both Shas and Yahadut Hatorah come on board, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will have 57 seats, close but still without a Knesset majority. However, signing with Livni and Mofaz will send a clear message to Yesh Atid and Bayit Yehudi.

Maariv reports that in their increasing desire to get into the coalition Yahadut Hatorah is completing its statement of principles, which includes giving the coalition a green light to uproot yishuvim in return for “saving the yeshiva world” and maintaining the status quo regarding the drafting of bnei yeshivos.

This document includes the chareidi party approving a number of measures that will most likely be part of US President Barak Obama’s diplomatic list when he arrives in Israel on March 20, 2013, primarily pertaining to ‘settlements’. The Maariv report signals the Ashkenazi chareidi party is willing to back uprooting all yishuvim with the exception of the so-called settlement blocs, which would include Efrat, Ariel, and Maale Adumim in return for continued yeshiva funding. They have reached a point, a source quoted by Maariv reports, that Yahadut Hatorah will raise the issue of how much it costs to maintain and protect isolated yishuvim in Yehuda and Shomron as compared to yeshiva funding.

The formation of this document appears to represent a cessation of efforts to form a religious bloc with Naftali Bennett and his Bayit HaYehudi party, realizing Bennett remains committed to his agreement with Yesh Atid and Yair Lapid.

There is no mention of Shas in the Maariv report, but Yahadut Hatorah and Shas have both stated one will not enter the coalition without the other.

Regarding the prime minister’s need to bring the coalition to a majority, he is still working to bring Labor on board with its 15 seats, or in worst case scenario, it is reported that he has offered Labor MK Binyamin Ben-Eliezer support for his bid to become the next president if he and a number of Laborites defect and join the coalition, giving him the required majority. In such a case, Bennett and Lapid may opt to remain in opposition, or take what is offered for the sweet deal for signing on will no longer be available.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)


  1. Getting Tzipi into the government coalition and giving her the Justice Ministry with authority over the courts and police would be a terrific outcome for Netanyahu and provide some real expertise in that agency. The tradeoff involving withdrawal from some non-strategic west bank settlements in return for allowing a few more kollel yungerleit to avoid the draft also makes good political sense in advance of the Obama visit

  2. I try and stay out of Israeli politics. But the “modern orthodox” party has made it clear where they stand. Time for torah yidden to do what they need to do to protect the torah (which of course protects the “state”).

  3. Great idea, UTJ! I propose we start by dismantling Beitar Illit and Kiryas Sefer, both of which are “settlements” our Arab cousins can put to much better use.

  4. Is this truely a shift?

    The Hareidi parties made a point of saying they weren’t “orange.” The rabbanim have generally favored peace over war, and not only because it looks bad to be a “chicken hawk.” A society in which being “karavi” is the dream of little children is not conducive to one in which we want our children to grow up and become “bnei Torah.”

    In economic matters, the hareidi are and have always been solid leftists. The same holds true in the USA. Economic conservatives (supporters of Von Hayek as opposed to Lord Keynes) are a clear minority among the frum.

    On social issues, the Israeli right isn’t necessarily “conservative”, whereas the Arabs who tend to support the left, tend to be social conservatives.

  5. To No. 2

    I’m assuming your preferred strategy is more limud torah to protect the state rather than posing a subtle suggestion that bnai torah should engage in “price tag” types of actions which c’v no one should ever consider.

  6. here’s a novel idea, why not make all the yeshivas receiving state funding into Hesher yeshivot, learn Torah and serve. Why is this concept so foreign to many.
    Torah learning is clearly very important, but who is going to protect us, if not for our selves history has been quite clear on this. The idea of the army in Israel is not like serving in the US, you will not be sent “overseas” to protect or defend a foreign nation.
    You will simply be defending JEWS as the Torah clearly spells out as to whom may go out to war.
    Defending Torah and learning begins with following the Torah. Did not our teacher and Master Moshe Rabbenu go out to war, did not Arron Ha Cohen, David Hamelech and so.
    IF not you, Then who, will defend your families?

  7. If this report is true, it will be a move of tragic proportions for the chareidi zibbur and will end up be a disaster. Not oly because they will run out of places where to live in moderately priced areas (like beitar illit and kiryat sefer) but it will cut into their support at any future is no accident that Yesh Atid and Bait Hajehudi came out the victors in the past election- such a cynical move will only make the right more determined and remember that Likud has actually turned more rightwards and Netanayuhu will no be bale to become Prime Minister without his own party.

  8. #6 – I second the motion, but will the Board of Directors vote for it? Time will tell.

    In the meantime, this has gone from a potentially constructive negotiation to a high-stakes poker game, and Bibi and UTJ have just further upped the ante. Poker is a game that should not be played by anyone, but especially not by those who cannot afford to pay up.

  9. Lets hope the tragic info contained in this report isnt true.(considering the left wing source that a good posibilty,just like you can’t believe the ny times)

  10. It astounds me that this red herring issue leads to (at least according to Maariv) such cold blooded callousness. The army does not want the chareidi en mass. The few that will be pushed in, will this indeed “destroy the yeshivos”? The destruction of settlements is the destruction of peoples lives and fortunes. That is real. The chareidi parties have not yet cleansed the bloodstained hand they lent to the churban of Gush Katif. There are still homeless, depression, heart attacks, early deaths stemming from that quid pro quo. What differentiates them from the Judenrat and kapos of the past?

  11. How sad it is that after standing up תחזית המתים the מפדל appears to be rejoining the dead. Unfortunately for the חרדים this will not be received well by the country at large and will lead to virulently anti-chareidi electorate in the next election cycle.

  12. #10 – The IDF has expressed little interest in conscripting hareidim. All they have said is that they will follow orders from the civilian politicians, and if order to conscript them, they will do so. It is pretty obvious that mass conscription of the hareidim will weaken the army by crating far more soldiers than are needed adn will undermine unit cohesion.

    The plan is to conscript each and every 18 year old hareidi or hareidiot without exception. That is what is on the table. The Israeli Superme Court has rules that public policy doesn’t allow for making an exception. If everyone between the ages of 18 and 21 is removed from them, that will seroously weaken the yeshivos. The government also is talking about closing down yeshivos that don’t cooperate in conscription of their students.

    The settlements (as the Arabs define them – anything founded since 1800) at risk include places like Bnei Brak and Sanhedria. If push comes to shove, the only weapon available to the hareidim is to offer to support a “one state” solution in which Jews could live anywhere in Eretz Yisrael (including the West Bank, assuming the land is lawfully purchased from the pre-1948 owner) in return for Eretz Yisrael ceasing to be a zionist state. Compared to this “nuclear” option, forming an alliance with the left wing parties, who share the Hareidim’s views on welfare and economics, and who increasingly oppose conscription albeit for other reasons, is a very moderate solution. The fact that a Religious Zionist is the leading back stabber, demanding the blood of the hareidi students, is a “game changer”.

  13. To No. 6

    There will obviouisly have to be some settlement withdrawals as part of a long-term peace agreement which will be the focus of President Obama’s meetings with Netanyahu next month, along with the Iran nuclear program. It is much better to resolve the settlement and draft issues at the same time. The rabbonim know best what mix of concessions is the “right” package.

  14. I am amazed that its considered acceptable for the chareidi party to have left wing economic views,to me that is as shameful as having left wing viewsconcerning the arabs. Also to Gadolhadorah,what long term pieceagreement are you talking about,have you been living under a rock for the past, forever?

  15. Guess what? Lapid also wants to dismantle the settlements. Bennett could have prevented all of this were it not for his inexplicable love for Yesh Atid.

  16. The ‘cat is finally out of the hat’.

    All those wondering why UTJ does not yet have 9-10 seats according to the number of Charedim who vote have NOW FINALLY READ/UNDERSTAND the REASON. Why were there MANY voters for Bayit Yehudi, Likud and particularly Marzel/Eldad from every Charedi kehilla because there is NO RED LINE in Charedi parties determining security, peace or withdrawals.
    The majority of Yehuda, Shomron or ‘Settlements over the Green Line’ are Charedi & Religious people. UTJ is willing to evacuate Yeshivos, Kollelim, Betai Medresh, Kiruv centers just to sit in a Left-Wing government. Oh gosh, the next election will be a major smack in the face for SHAS & UTJ.

  17. Great idea. Chareidim are not Zionists. Yahadus Hatorah is returning to its roots. Rav Shach was always opposed to constructing settlements. Less settlements = less soldiers needed to protect them, this should also please the share the burden crowd as their burden will be lightened.

  18. #10 Twisted wrote “What differentiates them from the Judenrat and kapos of the past?”

    I hope that this comment was not meant literally. It is disgusting and repulsive.

    On another point. It is astonishing that those who (rightfully) express righteous indignation every time a chareidi kid yells “Nazi” at a soldier or policeman have absolutely no qualms about using Nazi terminology and imagery against those who evacuated their “holy” settlements in accordance with the directive of the law of the land of the Democratic state of Israel (and BTW international law).

  19. Socalist programs desired by the Labor and UTJ/SHAS parties will bankrupt Israel’s budget and put us in the same matzav as Greece. The ‘entitlement programs’ of the Democrats/Labor parties slow down employment, GNP, and eliminate any work ethic.

  20. #17 Are you ready to dismantle Beitar and Kiryat Sefer which are beyond the green line? or for the matter Sanhedria Murchavet, Ramot and Nvei Yakkov. Or the real early settlements of Meah Shearim and Sharei Chesed….

  21. #21 Zionflag you pose a question to #17. However you are number 17. Are you talking to yourself or do you mean to address the question to someone else?