The Jerusalem Post
Shas spiritual leader: Boycott this ‘wicked’ government
The head of the Shas Council of Torah Sages Rabbi Shalom Cohen forbade the party’s MKs and officials within the movement from cooperating in any way with the new government, its ministers or ministers for any purpose whatsoever.
The rabbi, 89, spoke during a meeting at his home in the Old City of Jerusalem with the members of the ultra-Orthodox Shas Knesset faction, the Shas official newspaper “HaDerech” reported, during which he denounced what he called “the iniquitous government” which he alleged seeks to uproot religious faith.
“It is forbidden in any way whatsoever for the heads of [Shas] institutions, the heads of organizations, and non-profits, to cooperate with those destroyers of religion and their partners in this wicked government,” said Cohen.
“Someone who turns [to the government] to get assistance or [to advance] his interests desecrates God’s name and no blessing will come to him,” continued the rabbi in reference to the financial needs of Shas’s many institutions, including yeshivas and its network of schools.
“There is absolutely no need to turn to them [for assistance], God will ensure that we will not want for anything.”
Cohen said that the new coalition was “a government for uprooting religion and Judaism, and that Shas must be united to topple “this wicked government,” and fight to preserve Judaism and tradition in the Land of Israel and for the sake of the pure education of the children of Israel and to strengthen the yeshivas.”
Also on Monday, MKs from Shas and the ultra-Orthodox United Torah Judaism party met for a joint faction meeting and pledged to work together particularly to thwart reforms to religious life in Israel, which the new government plans to enact.
The MKs also committed themselves to avoid cooperating in any way with ultra-Orthodox advisers to the new government to advance plans like the construction of a new ultra-Orthodox city which Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has promised, HaDerech reported.
“We will not allow those who denounce us to confuse and divide us with tricks, excuses, and different explanations, as if their goal is really to take care of those who fear God,” the MKs vowed.