Dear List, amv"sh
Paul Eidelberg brings some very strong points objecting to Feiglin being part of the Likud party. I too have the premonition that voting for Feiglin or Shas (they too wish to join with Likud) under Likud is a vote for Netanyahu and Netanyahu's politics. This mean a willingness to negotiate and establish a Palestinian State. A vote for Feiglin is a vote for Netanyahu and is no way a vote for Feiglin. It seems to me that in the Likud party, Feiglin is an outsider and has no real clout.
Netanyahu's rhetoric is nice but his voting patterns have been a betrayal of our Covenant with Hashem, shows a disregard of the special sanctity the Jewish people have with the Land of Israel and a betrayal to the Jewish Nation.
This goes way beyond politics. A vote for Likud is not consistent with a Torah platform. Only a vote for NU is.
A vote for NU is a vote for what Feiglin really believes in.
Date: Tue, Jan 27, 2009 at 3:48 AM
Subject: Feiglin's Fatal Flaw
Feiglin's Fatal Flaw
Israel National News (INN) asked Moshe Feiglin, leader of the Likud's Jewish Leadership faction, to comment on Benjamin Netanyahu's latest remarks regarding a unity government. Feiglin said, in part: "Our job is to make sure that within the [Likud] party faction, there are enough nationalist MKs who will prevent Netanyahu from carrying out dangerous moves [like supporting a Palestinian state]." [The present writer will address this last remark later.]
In contrast, National Union party leader Yaakov "Ketzaleh" Katz said that the way to ensure that the Likud remains "nationalistically-oriented is by voting for a party to the right of it." Moreover, "If the religious-Zionist voters who are now supporting the Likud would vote for the National Union, then many left-wing Likud candidates will not get into the Knesset - while the National Union could get 10 seats! We must not let Feiglin steal away national-religious votes for people like Dan Meridor … and others." [Katz might have added that Meridor may become Justice Minister if included in a Netanyahu cabinet. This is tantamount to bringing Aharon Barak into the government!]
Now let us consider the central issue of the February 10 election.
1) There is abundant evidence that Netanyahu supports a Palestinian state. Hence, a vote for the Likud is a vote for an Arab state in Israel's heartland, Judea and Samaria. The same may be said of Kadima. But since Kadima's leader Tzipi Livni is to the left of Netanyahu, nationalists will prefer a Likud-led government.
2) Nevertheless, voters should have certain facts in mind about the Netanyahu-Likud record on the territorial issue, specially the following:
a. During his tenure as Israel's prime minister, Netanyahu failed to abrogate the Oslo or Israel-PLO Agreement even though his own office issued daily reports of the PLO's brazen violations of that agreement.
b. In the Hebron Memorandum of January 30, 1997, Netanyahu surrendered 80 percent of Hebron to the Palestinian Authority (PA).
c. In the Wye River Memorandum of October 23, 1998, he agreed, for starters, to surrender approximately 30 percent of Judea and Samaria to the PA.
d. In 2002, that is, even after the Arafat Terror War broke out in September 2000, Netanyahu and his Likud colleagues (with the exception of Naomi Blumenthal) voted against MK Michael Kleiner's resolution to abrogate Oslo.
e. As a cabinet minister in the Sharon government, and despite the warnings of Israel's highest defense and intelligence officials, Netanyahu voted for unilateral disengagement from Gaza (which, by the way, doesn't prevent him from boasting now and everywhere that he anticipated the dire consequences of that retreat).
f. Of the Likud's 40 Knesset Members (two were former Israel B'Aliya MKs that joined the Likud), 23 voted for unilateral disengagement on October 26, 2005.
3) In the January 2003 election, the Likud won by 38 seats to Labor's 19. This large plurality enabled PM Sharon to appoint more Likud MKs to his cabinet vis-à-vis MKs from parties to his right on the Palestinian state issue—parties such as National Union.
4) A comparable situation will occur in the February 2009 election. Accordingly, voters who support Feiglin should think strategically: "Although Feiglin urges us to vote Likud, we don't want the Likud to win too large a Knesset plurality—as happened in the 2003 election—because that will allow Netanyahu to stack his cabinet with more Likud MKs vis-à-vis MKs from parties to his right."
5) Therefore, if these "Feiglinites" vote for a party to the right of the Likud—say National Union—they would increase the number of Knesset seats won by that party. Netanyahu may then have to include MKs from that party in a unity government. The cabinet would then include NU opponents of a Palestinian state, bolstering "mavericks" from Netanyahu's own party.
6) Of course, given a unity government, Netanyahu could appoint enough Kadima (as well as Labor) MKs to his cabinet, to the possible exclusion of National Union. However, this will depend on the number seats won by these and other parties—and this is speculative. Besides, I have not forgotten Israeli Beiteinu, which may become the third largest party and complicate Netanyahu's ability to form a unity government supportive of a Palestinian state.
7) Speculation aside, there is a fatal flaw in Feiglin's position. He claims that with more people voting Likud, the Likud will have more MKs opposed to a Palestinian state. Perhaps, but this overlooks the fact that it will not be new Likud MKs supportive of Feiglin so much as incumbent Likud MKs that Netanyahu will appoint to his cabinet, and their track record on a Palestinian state is not encouraging. Indeed, by luring more people to vote Likud, Feiglin will enable Netanyahu to appoint more Likud incumbents to the cabinet, hence more MKs who, like Meridor, do not oppose a Palestinian state.
This suggests that Feiglin's flaw may be nothing more than a case of tendentiousness, not to say self-promotion.