Aryeh Deri reneges on apology for making ethnically charged statements
Ultra-Orthodox politician Aryeh Deri (Shas) continued with his ethnically charged attacks on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud-Beytenu party on Sunday, writing on his Facebook page that no politicians of Sephardi origin are slated to fill a significant post in the upcoming Cabinet.Just when was ethnicity what determines a person's talents? Definitely not today. This man is as much a disgrace today as he was years before. As someone who's got a brother-in-law of Sephardic background, I can assure you he would never vote for a part with such awful people leading it.
Accepting as a given that Netanyahu will be the one to win the elections and form the next government, Deri wrote that, “As if it weren’t enough that there are no Sephardim at the helm of any major party — never mind daring to dream of a Sephardi prime minister — when we examine the expected makeup of the next Netanyahu cabinet, we discover that no Sephardim are slated for any of the senior portfolios: Defense, Finance, Foreign Affairs, nor even for the second-tier portfolios of Education or Justice.”
And Deri isn't the only one in Shas who's a problem: even their spiritual leader, rabbi Ovadia Yosef, has been saying some very questionable to downright galling things. For example:
Army Radio reported that Shas' spiritual leader, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, called yeshiva students on Saturday night to stop their studies on election day to vote for his party and recruit other voters to do as well, so that Shas members can "dictate terms to the government."He sounds like a spoiled child who thinks public property is solely theirs, and funny how a man who believes in non-stop Torah study 24 hours a day thinks it's perfectly fine for yeshiva students to drop all their studies just so they can promote and campaign for the party. The Yeshiva World took notice, and said that:
"I appeal to yeshiva students - let them get up from their studies and go from house to house," Rabbi Ovadia said, according to Army Radio.
"Then we will have a lot of seats and we can dictate to them that we will not enter a government without so and so ..." he added. "The more seats we have, the more we can bend the Prime Minister. They will not have a coalition without us." [...]
Last Saturday night, after Netanyahu blamed Shas in a television interview for failing to promote necessary housing reforms, Rabbi Ovadia criticized the Prime Minister over his intention to take the Housing Ministry from his party, saying, "They want to take away the poor man's lamb. What did the minister do, not only to Sephardim but also to Ashkenazim? There were constantly Housing Ministers who did nothing, just sat at home and smoked a hookah. Our Minister (Ariel Atias) worked day and night to build new homes."
The rav stated the issue of those wishing to pull avreichim from yeshivos is at the heart of this election and this alone justifies one’s interrupting one’s limud Torah towards working to enlist additional support for Shas...Really! Pure hypocrisy in motion. And what about army service? Isn't it also important to defend the country? Rabbi Yosef is a shame to the nation, and an embarrassment just as much as Deri.