Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

23 Shevat 5765 - February 2, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Rabbi Ravitz: The Coalition Agreement is Being Ignored

By Eliezer Rauchberger

Degel HaTorah MKs abstained from voting on two no-confidence motions on Monday of this week since no progress has been made on any of the points listed in the coalition agreement signed between UTJ and the Likud.

Both Shas' no-confidence motion to protest the rise in the price of milk and the NRP's no-confidence motion over "the government's organized and planned campaign to de-legitimize the settlers in Judea, Samaria and Gaza," were in any case rejected by a majority based on coalition votes.

MK Rabbi Avrohom Ravitz delivered a strident speech in which he explained why he and fellow Degel HaTorah MK, Rabbi Moshe Gafni, were abstaining. "We entered the coalition out of a consideration for and concern over the issue of Jewish identity and religious services, in order to return these matters to their former pedestal following two years of neglect and harm to them. We set a timetable but nothing has happened. In the 14 days since the new coalition was set up several things were supposed to happen. The Religious Council workers and rabbonim were supposed to receive their salaries — but they have not been paid. Mikvo'os have been closed. Nobody has been appointed to run religious services in the State of Israel despite the commitment to do this. Thus there is not even anyone to complain to.

"The completion of construction of mikvo'os is being delayed and this is no longer a matter of money but of bureaucracy. In cemeteries, due to the winter conditions and the rains, bodies are being subjected to terrible disregard for the honor of the dead and there is nobody to turn to. There was a commitment to attend to the matter and the matter has not been addressed.

"Likewise in the matter of kindergartens for the chareidi public, which were discriminated against compared to all other kindergartens in Israel, a commitment was made to take care of the matter and it was not taken care of. In the chareidi sector, kindergarten teachers were denied 15 percent of their salaries without any real justification. Not only has the matter not be taken care of, but the Education Ministry has not even received a directive to take care of the matter. Tomorrow is payday, and the amounts will be according to the old arrangement, with the objectionable and discriminating cut.

"When we sign an agreement we vote as stipulated even if at times this may be hard for us, because we are obligated by the agreement and we honor agreements. But an agreement must be mutual. Therefore, due to all of the above and in the name of the harm to yaldei Yisroel through the increase in the price of milk, we abstained from voting on the no- confidence motion. But we still have not voted in favor of a no-confidence motion. So do not push us into a corner, for from there it will already be past a point of no return."

When Shas Chairman MK Eli Yishai explained the reasons behind his party's no-confidence motion, he waved a bag of milk from the podium and the members of his party did the same from their seats. The Knesset Chairman immediately told the attendants to collect the bags. As he handed his bag of milk to an attendant, MK Yishai said, "Poraz' cats will drink milk, even chocolate milk, but here people don't understand that many people collect food from trash bins. Those who do not know what I am talking about are detached from the people. The chutzpah has exceeded all bounds. Cuts are being made on every side. The price of bread is rising, the price of fuel oil is rising, the price of milk is rising. These people are simply being sent to collect food from trash bins."


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