/ / /

haGalil onLine -


Spenden Sie mit PayPal - schnell, kostenlos und sicher!

Search haGalil


Newsletter abonnieren
Bücher / Morascha

Koscher leben...

Aktiv gegen Nazi-Propaganda!
Jüdische Weisheit

Englischsprachige Übersetzungen 
aus der israelischen Presse

Online Translation, Now!

Get this article
from english
to hebrew, french,

In der kurzen Formel
steckt alle Verachtung des Menschen
und die Laesterung G'ttes!

Erschreckende Ausbrüche des Hasses


Yael Meyer

In a shocking outburst during his weekly "Torah lesson" last night, Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef compared Education Minister Yossi Sarid (Meretz) to the evil "Haman" and predicted that God will blot out Sarid's name from the world.

In this Purim season, Jews around the world remember the wicked Haman who manipulated the Persian king into issuing a death decree against the Jews and who was, in the end, himself destroyed for his evil acts, along with his family and other supporters. During the reading of the Megillat Esther the custom is to make so much noise that Haman's name cannot be heard every time it appears in the reading. The implicit meaning to Yosef's words and their implications for Sarid's supporters are clear.

Shas Rabbi Ovadia Yosef calls for "Wiping Out Name and Remembrance" of Education Minister Yossi Sarid

Israelis understand Yosef's comparison as the equivalent of a call to destroy Sarid. Many are calling for an investigation to determine whether Yosef violated Israel's law against incitement. Israelis are particularly sensitive to this sort of incendiary remark, remembering that some rabbis issued a "din rodef" against Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, which was interpreted by one religious fanatic as justifying assassination.

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's weekly "Torah lesson" is broadcast by the Shas satellite radio network to listeners throughout the country. Those attending the lecture were heard to applaud the remarks immediately afterwards. Yosef was quoted by Israel Radio as calling for "uprooting the evil man who hates the students of the wise." He called on his followers to say, on Purim: "Cursed is wicked Haman, cursed is wicked Sarid."

Reactions of Public Officials

Shortly after the remarks were quoted by Israel Radio last night, Justice Minister Yossi Beilin condemned Yosef's statement, saying: "The rabbi should immediately erase these incendiary remarks, which place a big question mark over attempts to cooperate with his movement." MK Zehava Gal-On, head of the Meretz Knesset faction, called for Attorney General Elyakim Rubinstein to press charges of incitement. The Attorney General has said that he will decide today whether to open an investigation.

Minister Sarid initially refused to comment on the remarks, saying that the statement "speaks for itself." At a press conference called by Sarid later in the day, he said that the Education Ministry regularly supplies Shas' monthly educational system allocation as required by agreement, while Shas continues to fail to fulfill it's required administrative changes and budgetary reports. For example, Shas has still not closed the 48 schools they were obligated to close due their small student population, and they have not yet submitted their year 2000 budget.

At today's government cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Ehud Barak said that Yosef's remarks are unacceptable and must be corrected. "[The rabbi] is a spiritual leader whose words have great effect... We have seen the effect of unwarranted hatred, not only in previous eras but in recent times," Barak said. Acceding to the request of Shas Labor Minister Eli Yishai, Barak conducted no further discussion of the subject at the cabinet meeting.

Beyond the Pale

It is well known that Rabbi Ovadia Yosef is angry over the treatment that Shas Deputy Education Minister Meshulam Nahari has received from Minster Sarid - particularly Sarid's refusal to let Nahari oversee the Education Ministry's administration of the Shas independent school system. Indeed, this controversy has been behind recent repeated failures of the Shas Knesset faction to support the government in crucial votes.

Nevertheless, such inflammatory remarks are well beyond the pale even in Israel's turbulent political cauldron.

Shas Party Chairman Labor Minister Eli Yishai tried to soften Yosef's remarks by saying that the Rabbi did not intend to call for violence, which is not "the way of Torah." Still, the Rabbi has not been heard to clarify his own meaning - something that would certainly carry significantly more weight with his loyal followers.

However, Minister Beilin raised the crucial question: How can anyone - especially those working on subjects such as peace - rely upon the support of a party whose members unerringly follow the edicts of a "spiritual leader" such as this?

Prime Minister Barak has asked the Non-Orthodox Movements to be patient and wait for him to finish the peace process before advancing religious freedom issues, so that he can keep Shas and Rabbi Ovadia Yosef on board the "peace team." However, is this the person upon whose word we wait to be a "partner for peace" while putting "on hold" subjects that will "upset" him - such as support for religious pluralism, recognition of Non-Orthodox conversions, the opportunity to marry in Israel for all, equal bearing of the burden of military service through the elimination of wholesale exemption of Yeshiva students?

If the Shas/Rabbi Ovadia Yosef prior track record made gave us cause to be skeptical before, this latest attack raises the doubt to an all-time high.

Hass und Mordhetze einstecken
- um des Friedens willen!

Prime Minister Ehud Barak opened the cabinet meeting yesterday with a statement critical of Shas Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's verbal attack on Education Minister Yossi Sarid, but to avoid a heated argument he did not allow other ministers to speak on the issue.

"I know that people really want to express themselves, but as public figures, we need to exert self-control and show determination to solve crises in the proper manner, " Barak told the cabinet.

In a statement that some ministers said they found too conciliatory, Barak said that "we have already seen what unbased hatred can breed ... we therefore must be responsible not only for what we say but also for how we react. Our responsibility ... is to do all we can to conduct a dialogue in peaceful ways."

Shas's Eliyahu Suissa, minister of national infrastructures, tried to interject when the prime minister noted that "words can kill," but Barak cut him off, insisting that "there will not be a discussion here."

One Israel mum?

Outside of the cabinet meeting, most of the One Israel ministers remained silent, and did not publicly condemn the incendiary sermon by Rabbi Yosef. However, Justice Minister Yossi Beilin spoke out strongly against the rabbi's remarks and called on him to make a public apology. Without such an apology, it would be difficult for One Israel to continue its coalition partnership with Shas, he added.

Environment Minister Dalia Itzik was the other One Israel minister who spoke out against the Shas leader's remarks equating Meretz leader Sarid with the Purim villain Haman. In a reference to the assassination of prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, she noted that the rabbi's comments could be interpreted by extremists as a new license to murder.

Industry and Trade Minister Ran Cohen of Meretz said that the rabbi's words "sow hatred and create a divide - not only within the coalition, but also within the public."

MK Roman Bronfman (Democratic Choice) called on Barak to re-open the coalition agreements and form a national unity government with the Likud. In his view, Shas is a divisive element that endangers Israeli democracy.

Deputy Education Minister Shaul Yahalom (National Religious Party) said that Rabbi Yosef should issue a retraction, and called for reconciliation and brotherhood.

The chairman of the Likud's Knesset faction, Reuven Rivlin said that "our close relations with Shas compel us to tell Rabbi Yosef that he cannot call a Zionist Jew like Minister Sarid names like Haman and Amalek."

MK Michael Eitan (Likud) criticized the prime minister's mild response to Rabbi Yosef's statements, saying that Barak's stance was "embarrassing."

The Shinui Chair MK Yosef Lapid, wondered "how much longer Yossi Sarid would be willing to say that it's raining when Rabbi Ovadia spits in his face." Lapid said that Sarid should resign if Barak does not throw Shas out of the coalition.

Die Regierung erhalten
- den Friedensprozess nicht gefährden!

Political sources close to Barak said that he plans to devote all his energy to resolving the ongoing crisis between Shas and Meretz. Indeed, said some sources, Barak views the current crisis in relations as a potential "lever" to find a solution to the soured relations between his two largest coalition partners. Earlier in the day the attorney general convened an urgent meeting of his top advisors yesterday afternoon to discuss the matter. Present were State Prosecutor Edna Arbel, Nava Ben-Or of the criminal division, Talia Sasson of the special missions division, Uzi Fogelman of the appeals division and Jerusalem District Prosecutor Moseh Lador.

The participants viewed a videotape of the sermon the rabbi delivered at the Tiferet Yerushalayim synagogue Saturday night, during which he compared Sarid to Haman, the villain of the Purim story and called on his followers to curse Sarid and "wipe out his memory."

The consensus at the meeting was that criminal proceedings should be initiated because the remarks were aimed at a specific person, and not in general against Supreme Court justices, as happened the last time the authorities were faced by such a controversial statement by the rabbi. The latest outburst, they noted, appeared to contain a clear element of incitement to violence against Sarid, since Haman was hanged at the end of the Purim tale. They also expressed concern that the enthusiastic applause and calls of "amen" by the congregation at the sermon could escalate into a physical attack against the education minister.

Rubinstein yesterday decided to postpone his decision in order to have time to consider which articles of law the rabbi apparently violated.

According to one judicial source, the possible charges include incitement to violence, insulting a public official and issuing threats. Since the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in November 1995, there have been 20 indictments for incitement to violence.

MKs and Justice Ministry officials recalled yesterday that Attorney General Rubinstein had explained his decision not to pursue an indictment against Rabbi Yosef for his scathing comments about the Supreme Court by saying that these were directed against an institution, rather than an individual.

Rubinstein used the same argument to explain why he did pursue an indictment against MK Avigdor Liberman, who allegedly threatened a senior police officer. This precedent would make it very difficult for Rubinstein to avoid charging against Rabbi Yosef, whose remarks were clearly targeted against a specific individual several different scenarios, including the possibility that Rabbi Yosef would refuse to cooperate with police investigators.

They also discussed the legal implications of a public apology by the rabbi.

Rabbi Yosef issues statement

In a handwritten statement prepared by Shas chairman Eli Yishai last night, Rabbi Yosef explained: "In my words Saturday night during the lesson, I had no intention of acting with violence toward Minister Yossi Sarid since this is not the way of the Torah. And I hereby publicly declare ... that it is absolutely forbidden to harm any person, even if he does not act honestly with us."

Yossi Sarid, who earlier wished the rabbi a "Happy Purim," said that the rabbi's statement did not put an end to the matter. He said that he did not hear an apology and that "as a matter of fact, I am not waiting for an apology. But I am waiting for all of the authorities to do their duty."

His Meretz colleague, Minister Ran Cohen said that the rabbi's clarification was meaningless and demonstrated obtuseness: "In comparison with the clear words of hatred that the rabbi voiced, the letter of apology is hesitant and insufficient," Cohen said. He added that the law requires that the rabbi be indicted for incitement".

MK Ophir Pines-Paz, the chairman of One Israel's Knesset faction, also said that Rabbi Yosef's apology was unacceptable and insufficient: "Until Rabbi Ovadia puts aside his pride and make a complete apology to Minister Sarid, the matter cannot be closed," he added.several different scenarios, including the possibility that Rabbi Yosef would refuse to cooperate with police investigators.



He says in his pre-Purim sermon: "When reading the Book of Esther, after 'Cursed is Haman' - say 'Cursed is Yossi Sarid.'"  "He is wicked, satanic and he must be erased like Amalek."  Sarid: "Remarks speak for themselves."  Meretz to Attorney-General Rubinstein: This is serious incitement, try Rabbi Ovadiah."

Jedioth Achronoth

Sarid refuses to respond to Shas leader's attack.  Minister Haim Oron: Incitement to murder.

Einen Mindestrespekt fuer das Volk Israel 
kann und muss von jedermann verlangt werden!

Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser: At the opening of the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday), 19.3.2000, Prime Minister Ehud Barak expressed regret over the severe remarks made by Rabbi Ovadia Yosef against Education Minister Yossi Sarid.

Prime Minister Barak expressed his reservations about Rabbi Yosef's comments and added that they are unacceptable.  He expressed the hope that they would be rectified, especially since they were said by a spiritual leader whom hundreds of thousands of people listen to attentively.

"We must find the way to maintain a public dialogue with mutual respect, fraternal love and courtesy," Prime Minister Barak said.

Prime Minister Barak added that we have already seen the consequences of baseless hatred, not just in past, but in the present as well.  This requires us to accept responsibly for what we say and for how we respond.  "Our national, substantive and public responsibility demands that we maintain a courteous dialogue that respects us, the People of Israel," he said.

Torquemada im Lande Israel:
Der Anfang der Inquisition?


[Suchmaschine haGalil onLine] - [What's New]


Werben in haGalil?
Ihre Anzeige hier!

Advertize in haGalil?
Your Ad here! ist kostenlos! Trotzdem: haGalil kostet Geld!

Die bei haGalil onLine und den angeschlossenen Domains veröffentlichten Texte spiegeln Meinungen und Kenntnisstand der jeweiligen Autoren.
Sie geben nicht unbedingt die Meinung der Herausgeber bzw. der Gesamtredaktion wieder.
haGalil onLine

haGalil - Postfach 900504 - D-81505 München

1995-2006 © haGalil onLine® bzw. den angeg. Rechteinhabern
Munich - Tel Aviv - All Rights Reserved