Rabbis Denounce Sharon’s Plan for Disengagement

Published February 20, 2004, issue of February 20, 2004.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Former Israeli chief rabbi Avraham Shapira warned Tuesday night that any politicians who even considered “evacuating a flourishing part of the land and expelling Jews from their homes [would] lose their seat and power.” Shapira made his statement as several hundred rabbis convened in Jerusalem to denounce Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s proposal to remove settlements from Gaza as part of a unilateral “disengagement” plan.

The “emergency conference” drew rabbis from the West Bank and Gaza, as well as from the rest of the country, under a banner calling them “Rabbis for the Unity of the Land of Israel.”

“If we do our part — bringing together the people of Israel — God will do his part,” said another former chief rabbi of Israel, Mordechai Eliahu.

Ze’ev Hever, the head of the settlement group Amana, took the podium at the meeting to explain that the rabbis and settlers should take Sharon seriously. Hever usually stays out of the limelight and has long worked closely with Sharon, serving as the chief operations officer for the establishment of the outposts in the West Bank at Sharon’s instigation. Explaining Sharon’s tactics, Hever said, “He throws a bomb. Sometimes it’s a Palestinian state, or evacuating outposts or evacuating settlements. He throws a bomb, retreats a little and then takes another two steps forward.”

“But this time it’s not media spin,” Hever continued, discussing the plan for withdrawal from Gaza, “because this step is not contingent on anyone. The government’s ministries are working on the plan very seriously. This is a unilateral step, not contingent on the Palestinians or any other factors. It is impossible to trust anyone in this matter. It must be taken very seriously.”

Rabbi David Hacohen, from Bat Yam, called “dismantling settlements a crime against the Jewish people” and said that “there shall be no forgiveness for it. Any agreement to evacuate a settlement is like the Munich agreement with the Nazis, may their names be erased.”

The rabbis decided that “nobody — from wood choppers and water-drawers to ministers and the prime minister” has any right to advance “this destructive plan and it is forbidden to participate or cooperate with it in any way.”

The rabbis called on Israel’s right-wing political parties to foil Sharon’s plan and to quit the government if it decides to adopt the disengagement plan and the evacuation from Gaza, “or if the prime minister goes to the U.S. to present the plan to President Bush without any government decision.”






Find us on Facebook!
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • A grumpy Jewish grandfather is wary of his granddaughter's celebrating Easter with the in-laws. But the Seesaw says it might just make her appreciate Judaism more. What do you think?
  • “Twist and Shout.” “Under the Boardwalk.” “Brown-Eyed Girl.” What do these great songs have in common? A forgotten Jewish songwriter. We tracked him down.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.