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Sunday, August 18, 2013 

Labor/Meretz undermine their goal in Kiryat Yovel by celebrating a Muslim holiday

In the Jerusalem neighborhood of Kiryat Yovel, there's been opposition by non-Haredis to plans to build a kindergarten for Haredis-only in a vacant lot. While I'm fine with opposing the plan in itself, what I discovered the Labor/Meretz activists coming there for solidarity doing is not:
Residents of Kiryat Yovel were joined Wednesday evening by politicians from the Labor and Meretz parties for a barbeque to celebrate the end of Ramadan, the beginning of the High Holidays, and to voice support in what has become a focal point in the capital’s religious wars.

Warburg Lot – a roughly seven-dunam vacant area in the largely secular neighborhood – has become ground zero for many Jerusalemites and politicians from both parties in the city’s religious tug-of- war between the non-religious and ultra-Orthodox Jews.

While the haredim element of the community wants to construct an ultra-Orthodox kindergarten there, secular residents and leading politicians from the aforementioned parties, have united to demand a pluralistic cultural center or school be built instead.

“The location for tonight’s barbecue is not a coincidence,” said Uriel Russ, spokesperson for the Municipality of Jerusalem Labor Party. “Right now in the municipality there’s a fight about what’s going on here.

He added that “Labor and Meretz have joined together to support the secular part of this neighborhood.”
Okay, what's the big idea? If they want to oppose having an elementary school that could indoctrinate children into showing contempt for everybody else, or that could lead to having bigoted Haredis coming around who could harass locals, that's one thing. But why are they paying tribute to a Muslim "holiday"? To a religion with even worse beliefs in discrimination than even the Haredis have? In that case, I don't think they've repented for any of the damage they caused earlier, and the only reason I can think of that they're opposing this now is because a right-wing government is at the helm. Labor was the one, after all, who gave in to Shas's demands to do things their way in exchange for keeping their coalition erect. And if they return to power, I've a hunch they'll go right back to their old capitulations again, all for the sake of keeping the Haredis happy at everyone else's expense. The activists in Kiryat Yovel should consider.

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