In Which, Once Again, Politics and Creativity Meet

Is there nothing new under the sun?

Since it could be too much to expect that Bibi and Likud would be the only ones to blatantly take a page or two from the Obama campaign, those anti-establishment outsiders over at Shas have decided to get in on the fun:

Yes, that’s an ad for Shas, proclaiming, “Yes We Can!”

Filed under Israel, Politics

16 Responses to “In Which, Once Again, Politics and Creativity Meet”

  1. That could be confusing, since “ken” is the ballot symbol for Kadima.


    BZ · December 18th, 2008 at 10:07 pm
  2. More confused votes for Tzipi! We can take what we can, here.


    B.BarNavi · December 18th, 2008 at 10:09 pm
  3. The evil Likud and Shas! The nerve!

    Shas is a hell of a lot more anti-establishment than any JewSchool reader, btw.


    Jonathan · December 18th, 2008 at 10:32 pm
  4. Depends on which direction their “anti” in anti-establishment will go, Jonathon. They want the education minister portfolio — and the abolishment of secular education with it.


    Kung Fu Jew · December 19th, 2008 at 1:28 am
  5. Yeah, but they’ve supported a lot of things that were/are heretical in the “religious” world–recognizing the Ethiopians as Jews and supporting land-for-peace efforts…to name a few examples. Plus, look at what they’ve done for the Mizrachi community in Israel.

    They aren’t perfect for sure, but let’s give them some respect.


    Jonathan · December 19th, 2008 at 1:53 pm
  6. Jonathan–

    It is indeed true that Shas has done good work here and there, partic. on social services and the like. But they have been part of the mainstream political machine for a long time, and have long since played all the political reindeer games–they’re not outsiders, by a long shot. Not to mention that they take plenty of positions that the Obama administration or the UFW folk would find abhorrent.

    This is certainly slicker than their posters last-ish time around, the ones with Rav Ovadia’s image and “Vote for Shas and you’ll get into heaven” or something like that emblazoned on it. I maintain that there’s room for some cynicism here.


    Danya · December 19th, 2008 at 4:47 pm
  7. jonathan,

    shas have becomee one of the most right wing parties in the knesset. Gone are the aryeh deri days of land for peace.
    like, 15 years gone.
    And what have they done for the mizrahi communities in israel? made them permantently dependant on wellfare and on community charities? mimicked an eastern european version of fundamental judaism? why is that a good thing?
    (oh, and bringing in ethiopians to fight demographic problems with palestinians isn’t such a good thing either)


    yael · December 20th, 2008 at 3:45 pm
  8. “oh, and bringing in ethiopians to fight demographic problems with palestinians isn’t such a good thing either”

    Wow, that’s not racist.


    jonathan · December 20th, 2008 at 11:09 pm
  9. no it’s not. Please explain why it is. Also, can you comment about my other points?


    yael · December 21st, 2008 at 10:42 am
  10. First and foremost, I stand corrected (not unusually.) It is not racism.

    “oh, and bringing in ethiopians to fight demographic problems with palestinians isn’t such a good thing either”

    This comment is a bit ambiguous, but it might be inferred to mean that you don’t consider Ethiopians to be Jews, and accordingly they were brought here on false Jewish credentials, in order to fight the demographic “battle” that we are waging against the Palestinians. That criticism seems more valid in regard to many of the immigrants from the FSU, and the story of their aliyah–which of course is another story.

    Regarding the Ethiopians, and specifically Shas, the rabbinic world in Israel, which yields enormous power, did/does not recognize the Ethiopians as Jews. You might agree with them, and that is your right. In 1973–back when the idea of a Shas political party was but a dream in the head of yeshivah boy Arye Deri– Rav Ovadiah Yoseph ruled that they are Jews. Personally, I agree that they are Jews (certainly those who came until the conclusion of Mivtzah Shlomo.) And, because I consider Ethiopians to be part of our Jewish world, I am grateful that Rav Ovadiah paved their return to Israel. But, if you don’t consider them Jews I can understand your consternation.

    “shas have becomee one of the most right wing parties in the knesset. Gone are the aryeh deri days of land for peace.
    like, 15 years gone.”

    As you refer, the Oslo Accords would not have passsed without Shas. You might want to check your facts, though, because the Camp David meeting was 8 years ago. As we may recall, Shas was part of Barak’s coalition. Rav Ovadiah gave Barak a very public blessing before the talks, and said that Shas would support Barak if he brought back a good agreement. Indeed, Shas then left that coaltion over what was discussed at Camp David (I agree that Shas should have supported Barak.) Maybe that makes Shas very right-wing. Maybe Shimon Peres is ultra right-wing too, because at the time he said that Barak offered far too much at Camp David. Maybe Leah Rabin was very right-wing, because she said that Yitzak would be turning in his grave had he seen Barak’s proposals. In later years, Shas has been coalition partner with Sharon government(s) advocating a Palestinian state. Again, these are value-judgements, in my opinion these are not the actions of a far-right party (on the Israeli spectrum); maybe you just disagree. But what cannot be denied is that Rav Ovadiah’s posek that there is a requirement to give up parts of the Land of Israel in order to save lives still holds today. (Again, Shas opposed the disengagment because it was “not the peace of which we dreamed” as Rav Ovadiah said. I wish they had supported the disengagement too.) Maybe Rav Ovadiah’s posek is not such a big deal to the average JewSchool reader. But, Yael, as a person who lives in Israel, you know how radical that view is today, amongst the rabbis.

    “And what have they done for the mizrahi communities in israel? made them permantently dependant on wellfare and on community charities?”

    They’ve set up thousands of schools and social programs, to support a Mizrachi community that for decades was given second-class status in priorities, funding, advancement, etc.. Were things better for the Mizrachim in the heydey of the Alignment, when Mrs. Meir admonished them for not being good boys? If so, why do Mizrachim by and large vote for Shas or Likud? Are they so stupid that they don’t know which political parties support their communities?

    “mimicked an eastern european version of fundamental judaism? why is that a good thing?”

    Again, these are value-judgements. We know for sure that the Ashkenazi-dominated Zionist establishment attempted to strip the Mizrachi community of their connection to many of their religious traditions when they came to Israel. If there is a “BT” type Mizrachi movement, driven by Shas, that’s their right. I don’t know what is or isn’t fundamentalist Judaism. I’m for sure not Heredi, but Heredim seem to have a place in the calidiscope that is the Jewish people/religions/ethinicity. Just like the Reform movement has a place; just like anti-Zionists have a place…

    I’d be happy to read your criticisms, Yael, but I’m done writing
    because
    1) Obvsiosly, I’m no expert on these matters.
    2) I need to take a Jewschool break for a while.


    Jonathan · December 21st, 2008 at 4:51 pm
  11. Jonathan writes:”Plus, look at what they’ve (Shas) done for the Mizrachi community in Israel”.

    Sadly I would say look what they have “done to” the Mizrachi community. They have guided their dress to mimic Ashkenazi Haredim. They have provided schooling that is good enough to get families to be grateful but not good enough to allow many of the graduates to pass matriculation exams.

    And, yes, Shas and Rav Ovadya were once moderates who could be part of a moderate government. But, other than to suck up taxpayer’s dollars, they want little to do with moderate thinking these days. Yes, one can still find the Psak of Rav Ovadya on the books.And one can still remember the days before so many Shas MKs were arrested for fraud and betraying the public trust.


    Meir Eynaim · December 21st, 2008 at 10:50 pm
  12. Let’s be clear here. Shas is a left-wing party, not a right-wing one. It is also an authoritarian-patriarchal party.

    Different dimensions.


    MSS · December 25th, 2008 at 9:37 pm
  13. [...] Shas? [...]


    Fruits and Votes » Prof. Shugart's Blog » Yes we can! · December 26th, 2008 at 9:33 am
  14. Yet another ruling by Rav Ovadia…

    www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1067910.html


    Jonathan · March 2nd, 2009 at 12:44 am
  15. Can I ever stop admiring the guy? Thanks for bringing the Megilla thing to our attention. This deserves to be on the front page of Jewschool!


    B.BarNavi · March 2nd, 2009 at 2:40 am
  16. The animosity on JS toward Rav Ovadia I’ll never understand.


    Jonathan · March 2nd, 2009 at 2:52 pm

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